Sri Lanka’s Kandy Lake – Keep Calm and Wander

Sri lanka's Kandy Lake - Keep Calm and Wander

The views around Kandy Lake are worth seeing. I recommend you walk around the lake and just enjoy it leisurely. Stop in a nearby cafe or under a shed if you needed to. Strolling around was actually kind of therapeutic to me after a whirlwind of sightseeing days before I arrived here. On my second day in Kandy, I had a whole morning free so I used the time to stroll around Kandy Lake.

After the early visit to the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, I told my driver I’d spend the rest of the morning strolling. He was okay with it and told me where to meet him afterwards.

Kandy Lake is a man-made lake that was built in 1807 to beautify the the country’s most sacred Buddhist temple.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Sri Lanka Gay Travel Resources

Lesbian Thailand – Our Taste for Life

Lesbian Thailand - Our Taste for Life

When it comes to LGBT-friendly destinations in Asia, Thailand tends to top the list every time. We’ve spent a lot of time travelling through Thailand over the years. And we’ve always been grateful for their tolerant and open-minded attitude towards to the LGBTQ+ community. As not only can we feel free to be ourselves without fear of discrimination, but there’s a thriving gay scene both in Bangkok and other locations across the country. Combine that with sun, sea, sand, and adventure, gay and lesbian Thailand has a lot to offer.

Thailand’s fabulous gay scene aside, the ‘land of smiles’ is a stunning and diverse country. On the one hand, you have pristine beaches, sweeping jungles, and exciting cities. On the other, jaw-dropping temples, fascinating culture, and mouth-watering cuisine. Not to mention the beloved Thai people, who are always there to welcome you with a smile and a “sa-wa-dee-ka/krab”.

With something to offer everybody, Thailand is a dream destination that should be on everybody’s bucket list. And this guide aims to provide you with all the information you need to have an unforgettable time. I’ve listed all of the hottest gay bars and nightclubs; gay-friendly hotels and hostels; the best LGBT+ centred events; as well as all the top places to visit around the country. We will also touch on LGBT+ rights and social opinions in Thailand, so you come fully prepared.

So let’s get to it. Here’s our amazing and comprehensive guide to gay & lesbian Thailand.

LGBT+ Rights in Lesbian Thailand

Thailand has some of the most progressive LGBT laws in all of Asia. Same-sex relations got decriminalised in 1956, which is earlier than many countries in Europe even. It’s also one of the only Asian countries to have implemented anti-discrimination laws for the LGBTQ+ community. Meaning that it’s illegal to discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity, in employment, housing, and the military.

That said, it’s still uncertain if the 2019 bill to legalise same-sex marriage will be approved. There is a general consensus, however, that this will pass, making Thailand the second country in Asia (after Taiwan) to recognise same-sex marriage. If this turns out to be the case, there’s also plans to allow same-sex married couples the right to adopt.

Full Story at Our Taste for Life

Lesbian Thailand Travel Resources

Gay Hanoi – Keep Calm and Wander

Gay Hanoi - Keep Calm and Wander

Here are 20 things to do and see in gay Hanoi (Vietnam). If you are into Vietnamese food, this list won’t help you much. I’m not including the names of restaurants because when you are in Hanoi, you can eat everywhere, especially in the Old Quarter. The locals love their food so much that it’s no wonder food stalls and restaurants are ubiquitous in the city. The list below is mostly tourist attractions in the city which you can pretty much read in travel guides.

How to get around Hanoi

You can all do the sightseeing by yourself with no problem. However, Hanoi is huge, and walking from one attraction to another can be tiring. So, you better consult your Google map where to start first and where to end. Also, the fastest and the cheapest way to go around is by hailing a Grab bike/scooter. Another option is to rent a motorbike daily or weekly.

Tourist Attractions in Hanoi

Let’s start from the area where you can walk from one place to another. The first six attractions on this list are within walking distance from each other. 

1. Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum

This is a heavily-guarded place where tall guards in white uniforms are freakin’ good-looking. Really! Zoom in your camera and you’d know I’m not exaggerating. Unfortunately, the mausoleum is not open to the public. All you can do is walk from the entrance to the main square and to the exit. Just in case you are wondering who Ho Chi Minh is – he was once the president of Vietnam and a well-respected revolutionary leader.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Hanoi, Vietnam Gay Travel Resources

Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon – Keep Calm and Wander

Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon - Keep Calm and Wander

Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon is pure bliss in the morning. Its serenity and the murmuring whispers of prayers are calming to the soul. At least that’s how I felt because I arrived there at 4:15 in the morning – earlier than most Buddhist worshippers. And way too earlier than most tourists, too. I highly recommend that you go early in the morning, for an obvious reason: it’s not crowded.

Your visit to Myanmar’s capital city won’t be entirely complete without getting a glimpse of this golden pagoda. 

Shwedagon is the most iconic landmark of the country that used to called Burma under British rule.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Myanmar Gay Travel Resources

Borobudur Temple: World’s Largest Buddhist Temple – Keep Calm and Wander

BLOG - Borobudur Temple

Borobudur Temple is the world’s largest Buddhist Temple. Judging from its massive size, artistry, handiwork, and significance, this temple deserves a UNESCO World Heritage Site status. 

Take a tour – that’s what I did. The van driver picked me up at 4:00 in the morning and we picked up four more passengers. It was an 11-seater van so it was not crowded at all. We slept all throughout an hour journey. By the time we arrived, some tourists were already ahead of us – in a busload!

Another way to go there is by getting a private car/driver. You can always flag down a taxi and negotiate with them. My hostel told me that IDR500,000 ($37) is a fair price. Take this option if there are 3 or 4 of you in a car.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Indonesia Gay Travel Resources

Karni Mata Temple in Udaipur – Our Taste for Life

Karni Mata Temple in Udaipur - Our Taste for Life

Karni Mata Temple in Udaipur overlooks the city of lakes and the surrounding landscapes. While the temple itself is only small and modest, the view from the fort is one of the best sunset points in Udaipur. After experiencing a magical sunset at Karni Mata Temple, we consider it to be one of the top places to visit in Udaipur in 2-days.

To capture awe-inspiring views of Udaipur, Karni Mata Temple is up there with the Monsoon Palace, as one of the best viewpoints in the city. Located on the Machla Magra Hills, east of Lake Pichola, you can access the temple via a short hike or ropeway.

In this guide, we advise everything you need to know ahead of visiting the Karni Mata Temple in Udaipur. Including entrance fees, opening times, what to expect & more.

Karni Mata Temple Udaipur

How to Get To Karni Mata Temple

Udaipur is an essential addition to any Rajasthan itinerary. It is one of the most popular tourist cities in the country and forms a part of our suggested one month in India Route. You can conveniently reach Udaipur via bus, train, or plane from all over the country.

Set East of Lake Pichola, Karni Mata Temple is accessible via foot if you don’t mind working up a bit of a sweat. From Udaipur City Palace, the distance is approximately 2km.  It’s a pleasant walk as you pass through various boutique stores and restaurants that you miss in the center of the town.

By Charlotte & Natalie – Full Story at Our Taste for Life

India Lesbian Travel Resources

The Stephansdom Cathedral in Vienna – Keep Calm and Wander

The Stephansdom in Vienna is, perhaps, the most-visited of all tourist attractions in the city. Apart from its towering Gothic tower, its multi-colored roof tiles are ones that you will recognize instantly. When I asked a friend who lives there now on where I can take a photo with my rainbow wig, she didn’t blink an eye to highly recommend this Cathedral. And being an obedient friend, I went there early morning to avoid the crowd. 

The Stephansdom cathedral is the seat of the Roman Catholic archbishop of Vienna. For visitors, they call it St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

As you can see from its facade, the Cathedral is obviously of a Gothic architectural style. 

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Austria Gay Travel Resources

These Meteora Monasteries Seem to Hover In the Air

Meteora monasteries

These Meteora monasteries are hovering in the air. On our way to see these monasteries, our jaws dropped as we passed by the towering rock formations. They are amazing geological formations that will never fail to make you wonder how they came into existence.

While these are marvels of nature, the monasteries on top of these rock pillars are themselves, marvels of human ingenuity. I declare that these natural and human-made wonders are one of the attractions that you have to see, to believe.

Who Built these Monasteries?

Meteora’s first Christian monks set up their monastic life here back in the 14th century. They constructed monasteries on top of these gigantic rock cliffs that must have been very difficult to climb. But, I guess, that was the point of putting these monasteries up there – to get away from worldly temptations and possessions.

And by looking at them, I have no doubt that the monks succeeded in their mission to practice their faith without much distractions from the outside world. They would do everything to live in unreachable places just to experience (or, maybe see?) God in their lifetime.

By Alain, Keep Calm and Wander

Greece Gay Travel Resources

 

The San Miguel de Allende Cathedral

The San Miguel de Allende Cathedral

The San Miguel de Allende Cathedral in Mexico is the most iconic landmark of this colonial city. This postcard-perfect town is located 170 miles north of Mexico City.

San Miguel de Allende was voted by the readers of Travel + Leisure Magazine as the “World’s Best City” in 2017 and 2018!

The old part of this town was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

San Miguel de Allende Gay Travel Resources

 

The Cologne Cathedral Facade – Keep Calm and Wander

Cologne Cathedral Facade - Keep Calm and Wander

I am going to show you the 360 views of the Cologne Cathedral facade in Germany – before I’ll take you inside. This imposing Gothic Cathedral is Cologne’s most famous landmark and the pride of its people – regardless of their religious affiliation. And true enough, from a glance outside, the cathedral is nothing short of stupendous and magnificent!

If you look at its sky-scraping spires, you feel nothing but like a tiny human in front of a towering giant.

Cologne Cathedral (aka Cathedral Church of St. Peter) stands right on Rhine River. You can’t miss its colossal structure which can be seen anywhere on almost everyone’s rooftop.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Germany Gay Travel Resources