4 Apr 2014
Moved to ReubenTeo.com

Dear all readers of this blog or if there's any at all, I would you to know that I have moved this blog to another website. Future posts will be posted there from this day onwards. I will try my very best to keep the new blog as updated as possible and share with everyone my experiences through my photos.

My new website/blog is basically named after myself. The blog section is called The Wandering Shutterbug. I know it sounds tacky but I will change it if I happen to come out with something that sounds better. The URL is http://www.reubenteo.com (simple isn't it?) Well, besides reading my blog posts, you can also check out some of my portfolio work too. So, I guess it's a new direction I'm going for. I hope you guys like it.

I promise to share with everyone new and beautiful photos of the places around the world. If you have more questions or would like to contact me or you happen to be from National Geographic, please do contact me through my new website or click here.
5 Mar 2014
Honeymoon - Ubud Village Resort & Spa

After traveling all the way to East Java and climbing two enormous and breathtaking volcanoes, it's time for the real honeymoon to begin. We traveled down to the little town of Ubud, Bali. It is one of Bali's major arts and culture districts, extremely suitable for designers and artists from all over the world. Ubud is also famous for the Monkey Forest of Ubud but rest assured that this resort is far from it and no naughty monkeys nearby to bother you on your vacation. The resort sent over a warm and friendly chauffeur and after a warm and short introduction, we were ready to hop into the car and were on our way to Ubud.
7 Feb 2014
Honeymoon - Mount Bromo

Sunrise at Mount Bromo
After a tiring hike at the Ijen crater, our next adventure takes us to another of Java's treasures. Our next destination is Mount Bromo. Perhaps the most famous and one of the most crowded volcanoes I've ever been to. Although the place is so crowded, it didn't stop us from visiting and trying to find what's so great about this place. Well, as you can see in the picture above, that was the reason why.

Mount Bromo is an active volcano and is part of the Tengger Massif located in East Java. As it belongs to the Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park, it is not the highest peak of the massif but is the most visited tourist attraction. It's last eruption was in January 28, 2011. After checking out from Ketapang Indah Hotel, our driver took us directly to Probolinggo, a base town for Bromo goers. It took roughly about 6 hours to get there and it was quite a tiring ride. Along the way, there was nothing much to see but trees and trees. As we reached Probolinggo, it was already dark, and we were going uphill. The higher we went, the colder it got. It felt like we were never going to reach our inn.

We stayed at this inn called Bromo Permai I. It wasn't the fanciest place I've ever stayed but the staff were pretty friendly. The room was damp and it felt pretty uncomfortable when I walked in. I'm in fact horrified with wet places and it made me feel like the room was a little dirty. There was nothing to brag about the room but it was what I have expected from some inn atop of a mountain. Well, what could you do? I had to suck it up and try my best to convince my wife that it's going to fine even though I feel a little uneasy myself. The temperature was cold and there weren't any heaters in the room as well. The only best thing about the place were the hot water kettle they provided which has kept us warm and the only source of warm water for us to brush our teeth. We quickly checked all our photography gear and had gotten everything packed before heading to bed.

The next day, we left the inn at around 4am. Our driver had hired a 4WD for us and we all went up together. It was a short ride of roughly around half an hour to the viewing point. By the time we have reached the viewing area, it was already packed with millions of people. I was so shocked as I couldn't find any spot for myself. Fann and I walked around trying to find an acceptable spot when suddenly my driver called us over as he has found an area around the corner. The view was pretty great and we were fortunate as no one has found it yet. After about 5 minutes, more people came pouring in around us.

Panoramic Shot of Mount Bromo and gang
Finally, when the sun slowly came out and light started to cast over the mountains, I was so amazed with the view my jaw literally dropped. It was indeed one of the most beautiful sceneries I've ever seen in my life. The purple and pink cast from the sunrise gave Bromo this surreal and magical feeling. I couldn't have done it without my beloved wife's encouragement and the driver who took us there.

Viewing area packed with some tourist leftovers
View of Cemoro Lawang
After the sunrise and some selfies. We hurried to our 4WD and it took us down to the dessert. This mini desert which has Bromo within it's vicinity is called Segara Wedi. On the way down, I looked out the window and the view was magnificent. We passed by trees after trees but I just couldn't get my eyes off Bromo. As we reached the gray desert, there were a shroud of mist around and it made the entire place look mysterious and eerie. As we got closer to the parking zone, we could see these people on ponies in the distance. These are locals trying to make a living by offering you a ride on their ponies to ease your pain of walking in the desert and up to the volcano. We didn't accept any rides from the locals because we thought it was a cruel exploitation of the animals. But, the other tourists seemed to be enjoying themselves on the poor ponies. The ponies were small in size and could barely walk through the heavy sand. Fann was so depressed when she saw the poor ponies' eyes. I had to comfort her while we hiked ourselves through the desert.

Cute yellow land cruiser
Horsemen of the desert
Beautiful view of Segara Wedi
Pura Luhur Poten
While we were walking through the desert, a mysterious looking oasis appears as a silhouette. It was a Hindu temple in the middle of the desert. This temple is called the Pura Luhur Poten. It holds a very important position for the Tenggerese scattered across the mountain villages. What intrigues me is the architecture of the temple. It's made from black stones from the volcanoes, unlike most of the Hindu temples in Bali which are built from red bricks. The position of where it's situated just makes the entire scene so awesome.
More and more tourists are here
Handsome horsey standing in front of a huge lava cake
The culprit smoking inside Mount Bromo
After a long and difficult walk through the desert, we have reached the famous Bromo staircase. The staircase is said to have 250 steps, but legend has it that if you count your steps up and down, you won't get the same figure. We tried but we seemed to have lost count when one lady in front of us farted halfway up the staircase. At the peak, all we could see was the smoke coming out from the Bromo volcano. The view up there was pretty amazing. It was pretty cool but when the sun came out, it started to get really warm.

After a couple of shots and enjoying the view, we headed down and back to our 4WD. We had a quick breakfast at the inn and left Probolinggo at around 10am. Now, our Java trip has ended and we had to get back to Bali using the same way. It was a long long long long drive back. Java was a great experience for the both of us. Little did I know that Indonesia had these beautiful sceneries that were literally out of this world. It was a mind blowing experience and it was an unforgetable trip for us. It sure is a weird place for many to spend their honeymoon but it wasn't for us. It was quite an adventure and we pretty much enjoyed every part of it. Our honeymoon has not ended yet, we still have lots of places to visit and relax when we reach Bali, our favourite paradise. Please enjoy some of our other shots.

Mount Batok
Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park
No, that's not gold. That's horse poop
Tourists and a horseman coming my way
Car trails on the desert
The famous Bromo staircase
Beautiful view from Probolinggo

Our trekking shoes have changed colour
19 Jan 2014
Japan Trip 2012 - Tokyo Disneysea

After spending an entire super duper fun day at Tokyo Disneyland, we then head on to the one and only, Tokyo Disneysea! The famous Tokyo Disneysea is one of the best theme parks in the world and is unique only to Japan. It is the fastest theme park in the world to reach it's 10 million guests in just 307 days. Boasting a whopping 11.9 million visitors in 2011, making it the 4th most visited theme park in the world. This theme park is also not owned by Disney which is similar to Tokyo Disneyland. The park is inspired by myths and legends of the sea and is made up of seven themed 'ports of call" - Mediterranean Harbour, Mysterious Island, Mermaid Lagoon, Arabian Coast, Lost River Delta, Port Discovery and American Waterfront.
7 Jan 2014
Japan Trip 2012 - Tokyo Disneyland

Our final few days in Tokyo were spent without waste. As mentioned in my previous New Year post, we welcomed the new year of 2013 at the most happiest place on earth - Tokyo Disneyland! In fact, we spent two days there, one was at Disneyland and the other at Disneysea. Tokyo Disneyland is the first Disney park to be built outside of the U.S in 1983. It's modeled after California's Disneyland and the famous Magic Kingdom of Disney World of Florida. Well, Tokyo Disneyland consists of 7 themed lands and features seasonal decorations and parades. The seven are the World Bazaar, Adventureland, Westernland, Fantasyland and Tomorrowland, Critter Country and Mickey's Toontown.

My Engagement Shoot