Chinese New Year – A celebration of colour and glamour

The origins of Chinese New Year are unclear but there are myths and legends that surround how it all began. A mythical beast named ‘Nian’ awakens on New Year’s Eve to cause harm and destruction.

Chinese New Year | Image Credit - Mutante, CC BY-SA 3.0 Via Wikipedia Commons

Chinese New Year | Image Credit – Mutante, CC BY-SA 3.0 Via Wikipedia Commons

Preparing for New Year

The preparations for New Year begin several days before the actual event. It is important not to clean once the New Year has begun as you will be ‘cleaning away’ the good luck that has begun to gather inside the home. The New Year is also a time for shopping. Be sure to visit the street markets that crop up in the vicinity of 4 star hotels in Hong Kong the likes of Park Hotel Hong Kong in the days leading up to the festival.

NYE celebrations

New Year’s Eve is when most people put up their decorations. The decorations must be red in colour, which signifies good luck. The traditional New Year’s Eve Feast brings together family, travelling great distances to be reunited and dine on sumptuous traditional food such as dumplings and sticky rice cakes.

New Year’s Day celebrations

Loud fireworks are a key part of ushering in the New Year. Rockets and chains of firecrackers pierce the night to mark the dawning of the New Year and families look forward to this joyous time.

Following New Year’s Day

It is customary to visit relatives in the days following New Year’s Day. Most businesses will reopen on the 8th day of the New Year as eight is considered a lucky number.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.


Kunming preparing for Chinese New Year – Enjoy the Festivities

With Chinese New Year falling on the 7th of February this year, millions of employees, business people, students and soldiers from every corner of the country will visit their family and friends during this month to celebrate the upcoming spring and end of winter season.

Chinese New Year | Image Credit - Flickr user: ahisgett, CC BY 2.0 Via Wikipedia Commons

Chinese New Year | Image Credit – Flickr user: ahisgett, CC BY 2.0 Via Wikipedia Commons

Chinese New Year

The Chinese New Year also called the Lunar New Year and the Spring Festival is undoubtedly one of the most widely celebrated festivals in the world. In many cities around the world, you will find enthusiastic Chinese New Year celebrations featuring fireworks, parades and numerous cultural performances.

Kunming Preparations

As you might expect the celebrations for the Chinese New Year in Kunming is one of the grandest of them all. Visitors may take the opportunity to experience the celebration that includes cultural performances like those of acrobats, opera singers, calligraphers, stilt walkers, puppet shows and drummers.


As a rule of thumb, ensure to reserve your stay prior to your arrival in order to avoid last minute struggles. If you are planning to host a party or a meeting during this time of the year, ensure to check out hotels which offer event and meeting venues in Kunming the likes of Grand Park Kunming.

Travel & Transport

According to the General Administration of Civil Aviation of China, more than 22 million visitors are due to fly the skies of China during Spring Festival. Furthermore, they have stated that the country might put in domestic flight routes to control the spike in air travel.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.



Rainforest World Music Festival – Dance your heart out amidst lush greenery

Organised annually in July/ August by the Sarawak Tourism Board, The Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF) is a 3-day musical orgy that brings together music enthusiasts from all around the world.


This music festival is held in one of the best outdoor concert venues, Kuching Sarawak Malaysia. For 6 consecutive years from 2010 to 2015, RWMF has been awarded by Songlines 25 best international Festivals.

Work Shops

The festival features a myriad of afternoon workshops and interactive acts that wake the body up with all the right vibes and rhythms. This festival has been rocking the rainforest for years now and celebrated its 20th edition from the 14th to 16th July 2017.


RWMF unities an electric group of people, indigenous musicians from all continents and highlights the use of traditional acoustic world instruments. If you are planning to be a part of this next year, gather more details by reading travel blogs such as Well Known Places which has information on the most visited places in the world.

Must attend festival

Apart from various workshops, the festival also includes a plethora of arts and crafts, festival souvenirs and CDs and food and drink stalls. This not to be missed festival guarantees a time of your life in the heart of the Borneo Jungle

Loy Krathong: “The festival of lights” – Wish for Luck and Good Fortune!

Loy Krathong is referred to as the Festival of Lights, where almost every water body is illuminated by lights and candles and floating krathongs.

About Loy Krathong

Loy Krathong is an annual festival held on the 12th lunar month. The festivities take place during the evening where the entire city is lit up with lights, hence Loy Krathong is also referred to as the Festival of Lights. This is also a festival of luck as people gather around the water bodies of Phuket to launch the Krathong; a lantern decorated with joss sticks and candles.


It is believed that Loy Krathong originated approximately 800 years ago in Sukhothai. In the local dialect, Loy means “to float” while Krathong refers to a bowl or leaf cup.

How to take part

During this time, Phuket town is a flurry of activity and celebration. Stay at Anantara Mai Khao Phuket Resort or a similar accommodation in the area, to be at the heart of the festivities. You can buy a krathong from one of the many stalls in the area and join the locals as they set their krathongs in the nearest lake, beach or river.

Feeling lucky?

The belief lies that by setting the krathong on the water body, you are wishing for luck and good fortune. If the krathong drifts away from you, the year ahead will bring you luck and good fortune. However, if the krathong floats back to you, you might not be that fortunate.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.


Songkran: The Thailand Water Festival – The Wettest Festival in Asia

The culture of Thailand is just as renowned as her lush natural beauty. Anyone who is familiar with Thailand or even Asia in general will be aware of the legendary Songkran festival.

What is Songkran?

This festival is associated with new beginnings and purification, which is why the country turns into a massive water-fight. During Songkran, Thai people also gently and respectfully wash the hands of their elders, and even wash Buddha statues with water scented with flowers. In the modern day, things are taken to the extreme with people taking to the streets with water guns.


When is it?

This iconic festival officially takes place over the course of three days starting on the 13th of April and concluding on the 15th. Many people take leave from work during this time and the duration of the festival usually ends up being extended to around six days.

The Best Places to Be

Extended festival celebrations usually take place in the more tourist-oriented areas such as Phangan. Resorts are aplenty in this region with many to choose from such as Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas, which means Songkran is particularly intriguing here.

Tips to Remember

Everyone excluding religious figures, royalty and pregnant women will be splashed. Since you’re guaranteed to get very wet, leave any electronic belongings at your place of residence/accommodation. Due to increased accidents during this time, it is recommended you do not ride a bike when Songkran happens.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.


Tips for a Successful International Conference – Covering all the Angles

Organising a conference is a tremendous task that requires a great deal of foresight and planning, especially if it’s going to take place in a foreign nation.

Choose an Ideal Location/Venue

One of the most fundamental criteria to consider is capacity. A venue must have enough space to support guests, exhibitors and workshops. If you’re having multiple workshops or speakers happening simultaneously, it will require some sound-proofing and acoustical-knowledge by the venue provider.


The language barrier is an absolutely essential factor to consider if there’s any sort of international basis for the conference. It is also worth having a contingency for guests who might be impaired visually or on an auditory level.


This is particularly important for conferences abroad. If you want opt for an exotic location and choose a convention centre in Bali then transportation will definitely be an issue. Although air-fare is commonly provided to special guests, transportation within the country might not always be provided.


It’s always good to choose a venue belonging to a hotel or one that has a selection of accommodation options nearby. Some places such as Bali International Convention Centre have their own on-site accommodation. If you’re choosing a hotel as a venue for the conference, you can pretty much always get special rates for the rooms.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.


The Algarve Sardine Festival – A Seafood Celebration

The people of Algarve, which is the southernmost region of Portugal, consider grilled fish to be a hallmark of their culture, and this belief led to the Sardine Festival.

Fish, Grid, Sardine

The Food

Grilled sardines are served with farmhouse bread and a ‘mountain salad’ which consists of chopped tomatoes, onions and green peppers that have been sprinkled with oregano topped off with a dressing of oil and vinegar.

Dining Etiquette

One has to place the fish on the bread and then eat the flesh, flipping the fish after one side has been consumed. Then the skeleton is discarded and another fish is placed on the same slice of bread. Once you’ve had your fill of fish, you may consume the now deliciously flavourful bread.

Festival Season

The exact timing of the festival changes depending on the town you’re in but most places have it during the months of July or August. Attending this festival is one of the most interesting things to do in Vilamoura and if you’re staying at one of many hotels nearby such as Anantara Vilamoura Algarve Resort, be sure to check it out.

Festival or Feast-ival?

The festivals are known to feature some of the finest chefs in the region, who conduct cooking lessons as well. You can also generally find various kinds of beer and wine from the most renowned breweries and vineyards of the nation.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.


Phuket Vegetarian Festival – For purification of mind and body

Phuket is a holidaymaker’s paradise for many reasons. If you are planning a trip, be sure to include these must-visit attractions in your itinerary.


Vegetarian Festival


Phuket Vegetarian Festival

Phuket Vegetarian Festival , Binder.donedat via Flickr, (CC BY-ND 2.0)

The Phuket vegetarian festival in Thailand is an event filled with colour and gaiety that is celebrated each year between 20 to 28th October.

Good Health

As its name suggests the festival lays emphasis on the abstinence of any kind of meat and is a totally vegetarian fair. Supposedly this festival is dedicated to the nine emperor Gods to induce good health and peace of mind. Phuket is amongst the top vacation destinations in Thailand.


Get to know more about this festival and local fairs and events in blogs such as The Vacation Gateway. In fact, the origins of this festival can be traced back to the time when a wandering band of performers was stricken with a severe bout of malaria and went on a strictly vegetarian meal and prayed to God for purification of the mind and body and sure enough the entire troupe miraculously recovered completely.


Face piercing in Phuket vegetarian festival

Phuket vegetarian festival, Photo via Public Domain Pictures

As a token of appreciation to the Gods, the people celebrated their recovery from what at that time was considered a fatal illness and henceforth the abstention of consuming any form of meat continues to this day. People fly in from Asian destinations, China, and other parts of the world to attend this colourful event.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world. Google+

How to spend your free stopover in Qatar – Quick guide to Qatar

Despite the recent conflict and blockade of Qatar by some of the other countries in the Middle East, Qatar is still a Go-To destination and with good reason! Keep reading this awesome guide on what exactly you could do during your free stopover in Qatar!

Doha Fort

Also known as Al Koot, this historical fortress in located in the heart of Souq Waqif in Doha. Built in the 19th century, the Doha Fort is a popular tourist attraction and is a great way for visitors to learn about the country’s history and the history of the fort.

Souq Waqif

Souq Waqif is a great place to shop, eat and stay at! There are many Souq Waqif hotels to choose from if you want to spend a day in the city, such as Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels, which provide an ideal escape and haven from the heat!

Al Maha Sanctuary

Animal lovers! This place is for you! Al Maha Sanctuary is the controlled breeding ground for the Oryx – this ensures that the speicies doesn’t reach the extinction stage. The Oryx is beloved by the locals – hence why the national airline, Qatar Airways uses it as their symbol!


Who doesn’t love shopping, right?! Spend the day walking through the shiny malls in the city and leave the store only after you’ve purchased bags worth of items!

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world. Google+

Rituals related to Sri Lankans – An interesting culture.

Rituals and customs go to the heart of the ancient culture of Sri Lanka. They have been passed down from generation to generation straddling over the 2,500 year history of the island. A majority of these customs and traditions are interspersed with the daily routines and livelihoods of people in their respective regional, social and religious spheres.

Taprobana, was the name given to the island of Sri Lanka by the ancient Greeks. Some of these cultural significances and rituals are based on colonial influence and are mostly still in practice within the island and is more to do in Galle , Kandy, Colombo and Negombo and other areas that were subjected to extensive colonial rule. You may catch the architectural wonders when staying at these areas in a tourist resort or villa such as Taprobana, Wadduwa Sri Lanka.

The aboriginals of the country also known as the ‘Veddhas’ are famous for prayers to avoid misfortune which they believe to be caused by the lifeless. Charms and various rituals are carried out by ‘Kattandiyas’ often to bring good fortune and chase away evil spirits. In the ancient times, before the discovery of calendars the people of the country had a habit of considering full moon days as a day for spiritual awakening. In the modern times, Poya Days are preserved for practising Buddhism by visiting temples to engage in various religious rituals. Most Buddhists observe the ‘Eight Precepts’ on these days to stay away from the pleasures of materialistic life. One of the biggest religious festivals of Sri Lanka similar to most Buddhist counties is Vesak, this is a commemoration of the birth, Enlightenment and ‘Parrinirvana’ (passing way) of the Buddha.

Thovil or “devil-dancing” are a ritualistic healing ceremony exclusively practised by Sri Lanka.

The temple of tooth relic ‘Sri Dalada Maligawa’ in Kandy, is a dynamic temple complex that has a series of ingrained rituals. The annual Perehera at Dalada Maligawa is a cultural phenomenon. During this glorious event, the Tooth Relic is paraded through the vibrant streets, alongside cultural dancers, traditional drummers, and majestic Sri Lankan elephants.


Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world. Google+