Sunday, October 28, 2018

[Media Invite] The Great Moscow Circus

ROLL UP, ROLL UP! This heart-pounding family spectacular's - THE GREAT MOSCOW CIRCUS is finally in Singapore and will be here till 23 November 2018, right under the magnificiant red and white big top, tent circumference of 40 metres!

Direct from Moscow and the circus capitals of the world returned to Singapore for the first time in over a decade, with a company of circus superstars! 45 performers, acrobats, clowns, jugglers, daredevils - all circus stars reowned world-wide for their theatrical flair and breathe-taking talents!

"We are so excited to be bringing the great Russian Circus tradition back to Singapore. Established in 1918, the Great Moscow Circus is recognised around the world as the best of the best." - Andrew Guild

Last Thursday, I managed to get a sneak preview of some of the sensational acts! Meet the Ringmaster! A must have for every great circus and Moscow Circus has the BEST - Mr Stanislav Knyazkov.
Ringmaster and Master Clown.

Endless somersaults by Fast Track Acrobats who were so agile with every single move! 

They made it looked so easy but infact it's danger personified as they landed firmly for every stunt! To execute this, strong team work, trust and alot of trainings are definately required!

How amazing but yet at the same time, every twist the contortionist made, made my heart froze! How on earth can one human being be so flexible! There must be so much of pain and sweat before he could present the best to the audience!

One of the highlight of the 2 hours show, The Globe of Death ! It was not one but up to 5 motorcycles went into the sphere and made their rounds in high speed without crashing into each other! Watch that surprise ending!

Guess what ! I was kind of suprised to see a female biker in the team! Totally had my full admiration! Totally full of guts and she did it as well as the other male counterparts! Whoooo hoooo!

The premiere was perfect and timely for his post-exam celebration! Xav's second time to a circus and Vera's first!

The opening segment, The Catwall Trampoline Troupe already sent the audience cheering and giving them continuous applause! Xav exclaimed that they looked like the acrobats were walking on a wall!

and it was a really a jaw-dropping moment when the box was revealed to show a man in the box! How flexible he was!

Man in the Glass Box

I personally love the Aerialists,

Double Giant Wheels (Exclusive to 2018 Moscow Circus and the Globe of Death! The rest were equally amazing in their own ways but these three made my heart raced faster, made me cheered and gave them all the applaused they deserved! The fearless acrobats were indeed, really, amazing. I think they deserved more than two thumbs up!

Running on the wheels without safety wires on them, no safety net on the ground, I held my breath when I watched one of them used a skipping rope, did flips on the wheel and covered his head with a black cloth the next moment! Totally exhilerating!

Double Giant Wheels

While there were moments that kept us on the edge of our seats, the hilarious Dmitry Clown would popped in and out of the program several times and sent us laughing with his really brilliant tricks! Watch how Dmitry performed with the hula hoops or spinning up to five balls. 

Be amazed!You can expect audience engagement too and the audience who were chosen were really sporting to play along! What lots of joy!

You have seen jugglers using hands, now I think this brilliant juggler, Juan Pablo Matinez, had juggling brought up to the next level by juggling with his mouth!! With ping-pong balls popping out from his mouth continuously and catching them swiftly!

Do not blink your eyes or even bid an eyelid! My ring seat was perfect to watch him upclose, as well as for other segments like Quick Change by Transformationist Sixto and Lucia ( Go to Xavvy-licious Instagram highlights if you missed the ig stories)

And Rola Bola conifirmed to send you biting your nails as you watch Sascha William goes higher and higher, balancing on one cylinder on another!

Rola Bola

Thank you @randomdaddyaw

The Great Moscow Circus provides you with 2 hours of astounding performance filled with thrills, laughter and entertainment with more than 16 sensational acts! The performances have an act for all the old and young! It is not perfect as after all the perfomers are humans too, but the audience still gave them the loudest applause when some lost their footings. This is heartening and I believed, is the best encouragement one performer could get and perform on!

If you have a concern of not knowing which seats to get, we were seated at the ringside infront of Section E and F. For ground acts like juggling, quick change, watching Dmitry, Trampoline acts, we could see the acts right infront of our eyes.

But having said that, segments like Horizontal Bar would require us to lift our heads slgihtly to watch them when they were on greater heights and they gave an effect as if their legs could reach you. Double Giant Wheels from my side could see the acrobats balancing and walking from the side view but of course having said that, direct facing the stage would be the best overview for everything, go for Section D. In my opinion, all seats would be able to let you watch the show not more than 11 metres away but just the angle difference.

Some tips to share if you are planning to watch (show starts at 7.30pm):
- Visit the toilet at Marina Bay Sands first before you head over.
- Be there 30 mins earlier should you need to queue up to get snacks.
- Have an early dinner before the show starts as only popcorns, candy floss, mixed nuts and drinks are on sale.
- if your child is more sensitive to noises like Vera, bring an ear muffler helps to block off some noises which may make them uncomfortable. Do not misinterpret this, the cound system within the big top tent was just nice and further more the performances were accompanied by a live band for the sound effects. Thanks Cynthia for the adorable ear mufflers!
- No outside food and drinks were allowed and be expected that there will be bag checks before the entrance. 

Within the Big Red Top is air conditioned, just sit back, relax and enjoy the performance! Do not miss the circus of a lifetime! Get your tickets HERE ! Tickets start from $65, no regrets! I bet you will be like us leaving the Big Red Top with some sore jaws from the continous cheering, jaw-dropping and laughing moments.

Event dates are as follow:
25 Oct - 23 Nov 2018

Tuesday - Friday: 7.30pm
Saturday: 12 pm, 4 pm & 7.30pm
Sunday: 11am, 3 pm & 6.30pm
Public Holiday: 12 pm & 4pm

Age Limit:
- Infant in arms and children below 3 years old may be admitted without a ticket.
- Children 3 years old and above MUST purchase a ticket for entry.

Venue: Bayfront Avenue (Besides Marina Bay Sands)

If you have enjoyed reading my posts, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram !

Disclaimer: It was a media invite for the purpose of review and no monetary compensation is involved. We thank Sliding Doors Entertainment and The Great Moscow Circus for the invitation, we had a great evening! 

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Explore Hua Hin [Day 3] - Phraya Nakhon Cave

I would always second to go for an adventure, not knowing what lies ahead and get myself sweaty than to hide in the hotel premises or the shopping malls. I am thankful that Don is always with me on such decision though he could just hide and lepak away in the hotel.

So here is our next adventure to visit The Pavilion at Phraya Nakhon Cave.

Day 3 
Wat Huay Mongkol Temple 
On our way to Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park, we visited Wat Huey Mongkol Temple which is about 20km away from Hua Hin and did some prayers. This is a statue of the legendary monk, Luang Phor Thuat and is well known in the south of Thailand of converting sea water to plain water by foot. Don shared this story to us as he got to know of this legendary monk when his uncle gifted him an amulet pendant of Luang Phor Thuat. You can read more about the story of Luang Phor Thuat here

After this venue, we were drove to Sam Phan Nam Floating Market.

You can strike this place off even if it is along the way, I find it a total waste of time.

It was not the type of floating market as I expected, alot of shops were vacant otherwise, the products displayed for sale were identical. There were some 'eateries' as well but it did not appealed to me.

Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park

This is the first marine national park of Thailand with Phraya Nakhon Cave and the iconic Pavilion, Kaeo Cave and Thung Sam Roi Yot Freshwater Marsh. The view was awesome, the tranquility of the surrounding coupled with the sound of the waves, it was totally relaxing!

I was in for a surprise, Don did not tell me how we were going to reach Phraya Nakhon Cave. For a moment, I was thinking if I was going to wear a pair of wet jeans for the whole day because it was so hard to roll up my jeans above my knees and the water level was just right at the knee level.

There were two ways, you can either go by foot if you would want to spend 20 to 25 mins to do a trail (350m) over the hills or go take a boat the sea way which costs 400 Baht per pax for a round trip. We chose the latter, took a boat to Laem Sala Beach and that was where the campsite was. We started our trail of 470m, making our way up to Phraya Nakhon Cave.

Was it tiring? Yes, you bet! 430m seriously seemed to be a piece of cake to someone like me who walks alot but with the terrain made up of mainly loose stones, some parts of the trail was pretty steep, uneven and slippery, the 430m unconsciously seemed like a 430km to me.

Vera had the privilege to be carried when she was tired but I must say, she was really good. She climbed and walked quite a distance, she was carried when the trail became steep while Xav took over the task of carrying the big haversack that contained our bottles of water. I was trying to catch my breath when we reached a view point, overlooking the Gulf of Thailand.

Reaching soon? But the cave was still far from sight.

Finally, saw the exterior of the cave but not there yet!

An exhausted but happy me, feeling a sense of accomplishment ! The journey would have been esaier if I did not wear jeans. But then again, it had saved me from all the mosquito bites. I got a handful of bites on my arms when my repellant wore out.

There was still another steep slope to walk down. Spot the miniature beings waving to me from the bottom.  

We saw the first cave with a stone bridge formed naturally and had trees sprouting, growing towards the sunlight.

Hell Bridge

The very last bit to go ...... We had to walk into the cave along a path which connected the two caves.

Here it is ! By the time we reached, it was around 3 to 4 pm, the beams were not as golden as compared to the morning or evening sun. If only it was not a cloudy day, else the rays could do magic. The cave was surreal and mystical, totally worth our every step to get here when I saw the Pavilion, beautifully standing on the hill. 

The pavilion was built at the end of 19th Century for the purpose of King Chulalongkorn the Great (Rama V) 's visitation and has also been visited by King Prajadhipok (Rama VII) and King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX)

Signatures of the kings. 

Going back is always easier if you agree with me.

Best things come to those who do not give up, this visit was one great experience to teach Xav not to give up easily in challenging times. I am so proud of all of us!

We did it ! 

The tired souls bidding goodbye, till we see you again! It had been a great experience!

What to bring if you are planning to come here:
- Bottles of water
- Dress light
- Insect repellant
- Covered shoes preferably unless you are confident you can complete the trail in slippers without any challenges.
- Cap
- Portable fan if you have to hang around your neck.
- 1 Towel for drying of feet after washing and 1 towel for wiping perspiration.

Thank you for reading and do stay tuned for the last part of our trip. Hope the posts have been helpful in your planning. 

Related Travel Thailand Post: 

- Khao Yai 2016 Day 1 

Disclaimer: This holiday is a NON SPONSORED post. All expenses are paid through our very own pocket. Just purely documenting down these lovely memories and to be shared to all who are looking into kids friendly places in Thailand! 

Monday, October 22, 2018

Explore Hua Hin - 华欣 [ Day 1 & 2 ]

Usually, we do not travel during September holidays, this trip was kind of a impromptu decision made, to have the much needed break for Don. Here we are back to the land of smiles and decided to explore Hua Hin District in Prachuap Khiri Khan Province, at our leisure pace. This is our 5D4N itinerary, with the two kids.

We engaged the same driver which we had for our Khao Yai trip. This time, Neck came with a van with a capacity to hold about 10 - 12 passengers comfortably at the same rate as her former vehicle but this time, more spacious. 

Day 1

Cha-Am Beach 
I always love to experience the local lifestyle whenever possible. Neck was nice to drive us to Cha Am before we head to our Hotel at Hua Hin. Cha-Am, if you are a backpacker, the type of accomodation there can be much more afforable while Hua Hin on the other hand, has a line of hotels with bigger and more established names and of course, more luxurious.

We were told that locals love to spend their weekends at Cha Am Beach just to relax. As we cruised along the road, we saw the long stretch of Cha Am beach lined with beach chairs, tables and fully sheltered all the way with umbrellas. Food stalls lined both sides of the road, patrons could placed their orders and pay a minimal fee to "rent" those beach chairs (around 40 Baht) for the whole day. 

The whole shore was filled with huge jellyfishes believed to be washed up the shores by the rough current, just be very careful not to touch them be it dead or alive, lest that you got sting. In the event should you got stung by one, do seek medical treatment immediately.

There were water sports available and the kids went for horse-riding after lunch as promised.

This was also the first time, I experienced fear. Come to think of it, it was also my fault for not insisting to sit with Vera when she confidentally said and insisted that she could be on her own.  

After 10 mins, the horse which she was riding on, from where I was standing, I saw that the horse was not its usual self. It seemed like it was trying to have Vera off it's back. With just two flicks using its body, the little people lost her gripe and fell off. 

The horse was not moving any further at that point of time and I think it was lucky that Vera fell onto the beach instead of a concrete ground which could have been more painful. Till date, she remembered this incident of the horse being angry and thus, losing its control. 

To make her less fearful, I rode with her after picking her up. When we rode back, several times, I did not feel quite right by the horse's behaviour. It seemed rather irritated, I requested to the man who was walking along side with us to stop the ride as I would not want to risk another accident, I rather forgo the payment than to have getting ourselves injured. 

However, he insisted that it would be alright and kind of refused to let us get off the horse's back, I rode back feeling jittery while holding on tight onto Vera but yet at the same time, I could not let her feel my fear. Thanks but no thanks, it was a bad experience this time. So if you happened to be there and wanted to go for horse riding, ride at your own risk. 

Cicada Night Market 
Only on the weekends if you are planning a visit, this night market sells more handmade products instead of knockoff merchandise.

Procedure in purchasing food operated the same way as foodcourts in the malls, using vouchers and get the remaining encashed after you are done.

The dining area was pretty huge and spacious with a wide variety of food to go for. I would very much prefer Cicada night market as compared to the rest which I have been to before and usually would leave without buying anything.

Day 2 

Plern Wan Vintage Market (Free-Entry)
This place is great to visit if you love photography, there were plenty of lovely spots for photography! I love the quaint, little place with retro setting and a mini fun fair within. 

The beautiful, vintage ferris wheel on display definately made a nice background for photos or simply just watch it made its rounds. 

On display only

The first thing she requested to go for, was to go on the carousel.

I loved the place being small and cosy and not flooded with shops selling the same kind of products. Great place to get some customized souvenirs or gifts but I left empty-handed though! I remembered there was a toy shop and photo studio if you would love to have some photos taken. Even locals would visit, a good place to relax too! 

 It also offered a few stalls selling some local thai food and desserts on the second level.

Lovely resting area for food and drinks.

Enjoying her ice-cream

We went in the early morning but I think the setting would be better in the evening with all the lights lighted up. 

The Venezia (Cha-Am)
This place was just like a massive photo playground with some areas beautifully decorated. With Italy as its main theme, they did up a replica of Venice, completed it with St Mark's Square, St Marco Plaza with its pretty bridges and even gondolas in the canal. Of course, I am missing and prefer the real Venice I onced visited 15 years ago. 


Entrance fee for the ticket was based on a combination of three different packages with a mix and match of different interest spots within the compound. Even if we chose to skip any one of them, it would still be the same amount we needed to pay.

It offered a combination of 3D Museum/ upside down house which we gave it a skip because I did not want to keep asking the kids to posing for the camera. There were also train ride to tour around the premises, horse cart rides and mini zoo.

You would not want to miss these coloured brollies that made up a nice backdrop and also doubled up as shades as well from the scorching hot sun, near to the entrance. What a brilliant idea !

had a mini-zoo but I found it quite disappointing that it had only feeding for sheeps (for a small fee) and I saw a few horses in the stables. Probably that was all but I was expecting more. The rest of the place was more for photo taking but the kids were easily contented with just feeding the sheeps.

Trying so hard to get a wefies with these darlings but they were only keen on the food in my hand. 

As for shopping, when we visited, there were less than five units of the shops in operation. Most of the units were vacant, except for one or two gift shops plus a food court. Do not expect too much from this place but it is of good to take a slow walk around if you have the time to spare.

The Venezia Hua Hin, 
1899 Phet Kasem Rd, Tambon Cha-am, 
Amphoe Cha-am, 
Chang Wat Phetchaburi 76120

FN Outlet 
From the name, you would have thought that it would be some kind of outlets selling some of the common brands we probably were familiar with at an outlet price but no, merchandise were pretty pricey. Seemed to me that it was just another departmental store, I would suggest not to waste your time shopping here.

What I loved was, it's beautiful inner yard and with those pretty flamingos (fake though) !

Could not resist to have a photo taken too!

With larger than life dinosaurs around the premises, this would definately appealled to kids who love dinosaurs!

There was not alot of choices for food but we stopped by Suzette for lunch. I love the minimalism design with ample natural lighting that came in from the huge window glass panels, gave me a very relaxing feel, nice place to chill out! 

The western food were quite decent and price was reasonable in my opinion.

The pizza was great, Vera polished off almost everything by herself.

Cha-am, Cha-am District, 
Phetchaburi 76120, Thailand

Santorini Park Cha-Am
About 40 mins drive away from Hua Hin, Santorini Park was located in Cha-Am. This place is another mini theme park just that the design of the premises was a replica of the real Santorini in Greece. I preferred the settings here more than Venezia, if you are looking to places to take your #OOTD posts, this place has plenty of instagrammable spots. 

There were more shops with common brands like Timberland,  Adidas, Converse if you would love to do a bit of shopping. 

Entry fee per pax, inclusive of a ferris wheel ride.

For Miffy fans, there was a Miffy's Garden Cafe and Miffy Garden for more photo opportunities. We skipped the garden as the sky was totally overcast. 

As promised, her ferris wheel ride. 

To sum it up, basically this attarction is divided into two parts, an area for photography and the other for rides with activities like Carousel, Haunted House (a small scale). Time over-ran at Venezia, hence, and we planned to drop by Swiss Sheep Farm and Camel Republic as well.  We did not managed to finish covering the whole of Santorini Park Cha-Am but I wished there weren't any last min changes, as there were alot more to cover. Till the next visit if I ever return to Hua Hin, which is unlikely not. I will prefer to explore another new province. I came upon a blog with more pictures of this park posted in 2013 but the photos in it were quite the same I saw personally. 

Energy level was low by the late noon, the tuk tuk driver told us that Camel Republic was similar to Venezia and Swiss Sheep Farm and we decided to skip it. 

Khao Yai, Cha-am District, Phetchaburi 76120, Thailand

Swiss Sheep Farm 
This was just right beside Camel Republic, who knows the kids decided to just skip it as well. I guess they were probably looking forward to dive straight into the pool instead from the sweltering weather.  We could see that there were more variety of animals as compared to Venezia and if you would like to bring your little ones for more interaction with animals, Swiss Sheep Farm is more recommended.

These places were planned with the kids in mind, since they had fed the sheeps earlier and we have seen the adorable alpacas before in Khao Yai. We were totally fine with skipping this place as well.

Petchkasem Road, Cha-am 76120, Thailand

That's so much for Day 1 &2! The places we went to on Day 2 were all along the same stretch / cluster. I hope it is helpful in giving you a rough idea of where you can head to should you be planning for a trip to Hua Hin. 

Thank you for reading through and do stay tuned for the second part of our trip. There is some sales going on on Klook too, get some savings too as you plan for your next holiday! 

Related Travel Thailand Post: 
Disclaimer: This holiday is a NON SPONSORED post but the post does contain affliliated links. All expenses are paid through our very own pocket. Just purely documenting down these lovely memories and to be shared to all who are looking into kids friendly places in Thailand!

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