Day #13: A Travel Destination That Is Your Guilty Pleasure

I’ve totally failed doing this challenge a billion times, but I still am determined to finish it. Today’s the only day I finally found enough time to sit down and type on my laptop. For the past weeks, it’s either I’ve been to busy prepping for work, family stuff, or too tired to function after working out. But, no matter, I’m back with Day #13. heehee

I knew exactly what place I wanted to write about for Day 13. I haven’t met anyone who shares the same fascination as I do, so if you do want to go to this place too, leave a comment below! LOL

For Day 12, I wrote how I don’t see the appeal in South Korea. Now, I’m going to publicly announce that my travel destination guilty pleasure is the other Korea. Yup, not the KPop filled, cute Korea, but rather, the isolated, mysterious, sometimes scary Korea. Whenever I tell someone I want to go to North Korea, they think I’m some crazy person. Maybe I might be. BUT, it’s the whole not-everyone-is-allowed-to-go-to-North-Korea is what makes me want to go.

I want to see how they live and how different their country is. I will admit that I’ve spent a couple of hours scrolling through instagram posts of various photographers who have been to North Korea. They’ve posted a lot of pictures of propagandas posted everywhere, children having fun, North Korean technology that is a pretty out dated, tons of soldiers & cherry blossoms.

Here are a few reasons why I want to go to North Korea:

1. I want to see what’s on North Korean TV. What do they broadcast?

2. I want to see the soldiers march, specifically, the women soldiers.

3. I want to see their fearless leader.

4. I really really want to see their old computers.

5. I want to know what they know about the world.

It’s the not knowing what’s there that has got me hooked for the past decade 😀

PS. I couldn’t find nice pics to post hihi

North Korea for my travel destination guilty pleasure

Advertisements

Day #11: A Travel Destination That Reminds You Of Your Favorite Band or Music Video

I love the Pussycat Dolls, and I love this song. I’ve been listening to it lately almost everyday. I think it’s because recently I’ve been taking Belly Dance lessons again, and this song in particular gives off a belly-dance-sexy vibe. Speaking of belly dancing, that’s what this music video reminds me off. I daydream about the belly dancers from the Middle East or in Egypt or Turkey. The music reminds me about the soft movements of the body, as well as the precise isolations that the dancers make. I’d totally love to go to those places one day (when it’s safe and what not) to learn the raw belly dance techniques from those who started it all.


  Middle East for this day’s travel destination : ) 

Day #10: A Relaxing Travel Destination

Let me take you back to my country, again. I’m sure a lot of you have heard of this place!

The only time I feel truly relaxed is when I go to the beach and just lie around while drinking fresh buko juice. mmmmmmm. I don’t have to think about life HAHA. All I have to think about is what I’m going to eat, when’s my next massage or what activity I’m going to do next. I always lose track of the days when we go on beach vacations. That’s when you know it really is good.

The place I’m talking about is this tiny bit of paradise found in the Philippines.

white_beach_5

Boracay is known for its fine, white sand, diverse activities – such as parasailing, jet skiing, cliff diving, island hopping, snorkelling, helmet diving – local food, amazing sunset view & night life. It’s an hour away from Manila by plane. You land on the mainland first, then you ride a 15 minute boat ride going to the island. They have hotels ranging from very affordable to woah-man-that’s-what-I-make-in-a-year prices. I’m just exaggerating, but there are hotels that are pretty fancy (pricey)!

Personally, I don’t like partying in Boracay when I’m with my family because I’d just really really love to just chill by the pool, eat, get a massage, sleep early & wake up early to jog by the beach. That is my all time routine every time we go the island. We usually stay at Boracay Regency (located in Station 2). I super love the hotel! The rooms are great, their pool is big, their staff’s really friendly & welcoming, and their food…mmmmm, the food. When I went there with my friends last summer, I wanted to party, but I just decided to sleep instead. HAHA. Grandmother mode ON. We stayed at La Carmela (located in Station 3). It’s a cheap hotel which is great when you’re on vacation with friends because the logic is all you need is a bed & a shower to get some rest and freshen up. You don’t necessarily need all the other unnecessary fanciness. Just make sure to book room in the Executive Wing (I think that’s the name of their new wing.) The rooms in the older wings, I’m told, are not so great, even if all you need is a bed & a shower.


547954_10201006110297979_1666387106_nHere’s a picture of the Boracay sunset! This was just taken with my phone! It’s great in person!

15052_10201006117898169_318466803_n

Here’s a picture of my friends and I when we went there last summer. The sand’s super fine & soft! I love just lying down and listening to the waves crash when the sun is going down.

983967_10201237569884324_722007363_nThis is my sister and I trying out parasailing for the fist time. I was so scared because I am afraid of heights. While we were up there, I just kept shouting at my sister and telling her, “Bree!!! Talk to me! Tell me I can do this!! Talk to me! BREE!!! What if there’s a whale under us?!! Oh, Lord Jesus Christ protect us!!” haha I enjoyed it though, so we went on another ride the next day.
(lowest price: 600PHP for 15 minutes)

547079_10201006362744290_245297435_nWe totally pulled of a legit looking chicken fight, yeah? hahaha. I’d like to think so. We were killing time while waiting for the lame party to start.

68523_10201006320543235_966034546_n

Here we are helmet diving! It’s a really interesting experience. The pressure in your ears hurt like hell, though. Sometimes it goes away, other times, it doesn’t. The fishes look so beautiful! There isn’t much coral around you, though.
(lowest: 400PHP for 15 minutes)

254569_2138541186116_3814097_n

Here’s a picture of some of my family on a banana boat. You sit on an inflatable banana shaped boat, hold on tightly while a speedboat pulls you around the deep waters. It’s really fun, especially when I rode it with my friends because all we did was laugh and laugh while trying our best not to fall into the water. The only downside to this is when the speedboat is pulling you, water is splashing you on your face fast. So, it hurts! It goes inside your eyes, nose and mouth. But, that adds to the fun! haha
(lowest price: 200PHP for 20* minutes) – I’m not sure if 15 or 20 minutes. 

260409_2138499825082_6757952_n

Here’s a pic of my mom and cousins snorkelling by the boat. It’s part of their ‘Island Hopping’ package where they bring you to the different beaches on the island, and let you snorkel in a place with lots of fishes! Just make sure to bring bread so that tons of fishes will go to you. We usually just get bread from the hotel’s buffet during breakfast. HAHA.
(lowest: 300PHP per head for 3 hours of Island Hopping)

252460_2138536025987_4761989_nThis is the most tiring thing I’ve done on the island. MYGAD. It’s really thrilling, exciting and fun, but it just hurts your arms mostly, but also, your back, stomach, legs, butt when you come in contact with the water. Like the banana boat, a speed boat will pull this thingamabob. When it’s in normal speed, it’s like any ordinary inflated ride, but when the driver starts to hit the gas, the ‘Flyfish’ will automatically rise a few feet off the water in a 45 – 90 degree angle. You really really have to hang on for dear life. When you fall and hit the water, it hurts. But you’d just want to go back on it and do it again. It’s highly entertaining. Just make sure to wear something that won’t come off!
(lowest price: 400PHP for 15-20 minutes)

I totally recommend going here if you haven’t already. There are a lot of things to do (there are packages too so that you can save money!), lot’s of food choices & great scenery. I should warn you though, during the first few months up until April, the beach side is filled with seaweed. haha but everything’s still good. : )

Boracay is listed as one of the best beaches in the world!! : ) Care to judge for yourself?

Boracay for ‘a relaxing travel destination.’

Day #9: A Travel Destination With Great Beer

I do not like drinking beer. I don’t like the taste, I feel super heavy and bloated after, and I don’t want to have a beer belly haha. So, I wouldn’t really know any place with great beer. I can go with the common ones like Germany or Spain. (I think any where in Europe was great beer)

I’d just like to take this time to talk about this one beer that I really really like. I mean, I would drink this most of the time if this particular one we’re served in all the restos and bars that my friends and I would go to. I tasted it when my friends and I went on our first night out in Strasbourg during our Study Tour to France. I’m not the only one who liked it. My friends did too! We found a place where they sell it here in Manila, but we haven’t had the time to go there yet.

The beer I’m talking about is this…

Desperados: Tequila flavored beer
Desperados: Tequila flavored beer

Hope you guys get to try this out too, and tell me what you think!
Enlighten me, what’s a travel destination with great beer? : )

Day #8: A Travel Destination Where You Know All/ Most of the Sites

I chose a place I’ve fallen in love with in books, TVs, and magazines. It was my first time travelling alone so I really wanted to explore and just walk aimlessly in the city.

I think I’ve mentioned this on here a few times, but for the sake of this post, I will mention it again. Last year, I interned at the Philippine Department of Tourism in London. I stayed there for a month and a couple of weeks. Going to London for me felt like the first dip into the pool after a long hot day, the first time you tasted chocolate cake (If you don’t like chocolate or cake, then..why?), the first sip of water after doing a really tiring workout.  It was that aaaaaaaah-feel-good-heaven-on-earth feeling.

When I arrived there, I didn’t waste my time. I immediately wanted to tour the city with my mom’s friend, who was such a good tour guide and host! Trisha, my friend who interned in the Department as well,  said that she was able to see the famous sites in one day. Seeing as I did not want to fit everything in a day, I tried to divide the places in the 3 free days I had before my internship began. What really happened was that I saw 90% of the places in 1 day and just reserved 2 or 3 places on the 2nd day, and wen’t shopping for the rest of my free time…

The tourist spots I saw were: The London Eye, Big Ben, Piccadilly Circus, Tower Bridge, London Bridge, Trafalgar Square, Buckingham Palace, Temple Church, Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Oxford Street, Hyde Park… just the ones that we mostly see on the television or magazines.

On the other days that I was there, I went to the Victoria and Albert Museum, Greenwich with Trisha, and I went on a ‘Jack the Ripper’ tour with my bosses and Trisha as well (This was really cool and highly entertaining!) I think I can still find my way around their tube!

The rest of my days were spent in the office or going outside London to visit other famous tourist places. I’d have to say that Trisha and I have been to a lot of places in the span of a month! I mean, come on, who knows when we’ll be ever going back there again, right? Might as well make the most out of our stay.

Although, I regret not doing more research before hand on the other places that I could’ve gone to that I know would interest me greatly. Maybe it’s written in my path again to go back. Just Maybe.

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

There you have it. ‘Til the next entry.

London for the ‘travel destination where I know all/most of the sites’ : ) 

Day #7: A Travel Destination Where You Love The People

I will get my shit together for this challenge. I’ve been totally busy! Lo siento. I will do my best to be back on track this week. 

Let me take this time to appreciate my country and my fellow Filipinos. hehe

When tourists come to the Philippines, they say that the Filipinos are very nice and hospitable. Even Filipinos abroad do not disappoint! (REPRESENT!) Filipinos are known to always have smiles on their faces and find the good out of every situation, even the bad ones. Sure, there are a few stereotypes, but in general, I think we’re doing pretty damn good.

We have a dancing traffic enforcer. Gone are the days when being stuck in traffic is such a drag.

Our inmates spend their free time learning dance steps.

We have an elevator attendant that brightens up your day!

Aside from the good vibes that Filipinos bring, I love love love our nationalism!  PINOY PRIDE! I love how whenever there is a Filipino somewhere joining an international competition, we never fail to support them. I especially love how we cheered on the Smart Gilas in the FIBA Asia 2013 games. (See you in Spain, bitchezz)

If you’ve never been to the Philippines, I suggest that you book a ticket now ASAP. Aside from the amazing people, we have really really great tourists spots that’ll just take your breath away! Oh, and almost every Filipino can speak English! Watch the first video again if you need more convincing.

So there you have it.
Philippines for the ‘travel destination where I love the people’  : ) 

Day #6: A Travel Destination Where You Love The Food

(Forgive me for the slight MIA. I’ve been totally busy these past few days because my mom came into town. We always had to leave the house and go do something. Thus, I always came home feeling really tired. haha Anywaaaaay…)

Whenever Marco asks what do I want to eat for lunch, I always say “JAPANESE FOOD!!!” I can never ever get sick of eating Japanese food. If I’m craving something, it’s almost always Japanese food. Is it because I’m part Japanese? I don’t know. Maybe. I’ve only been to Japan once, and every meal time was like heaven on earth for me. I have an aunt who married a Japanese man, so whenever she comes home here in the Philippines, we visit her in her condo, and she cooks all these Japanese deliciousness.

First up, let me show you a pic of a Japanese resto with their food on a conveyor belt. You just grab whatever you want and they charge you accordingly. I know many of you have seen something like this. It is the coolest and most stressful dining experience I’ve had. Stressful because I feel like if I don’t get the food immediately, it will be gone forever, and I just lost my chance of tasting it.

First up, let me show you a pic of a Japanese resto with their food on a conveyor belt. You just grab whatever you want and they charge you accordingly. I know many of you have seen something like this. It is the coolest and most stressful dining experience I've had. Stressful because I feel like if I don't get the food immediately, it will be gone forever.

Miso soup. How do I even begin to explain my love for Miso soup? I can have it allday errday and still want more.

Miso soup. How do I even begin to explain my love for Miso soup? I can have it allday errday and still want more.

I love trying the different kinds of sushi everytime we eat at a Japanese restaurant. Right now, I’ve been really liking the friend makis. They taste so good! 8 pieces of these babies for any meal, and I’m good to go.

bigstock-Sushi-and-rolls-12361364

I love Sashimi. Period. People find it odd eating raw fish, but, they’re so good! Am I right or am I right?

I love Sashimi. Period. People find it odd eating raw fish, but, they're so good! Am I right or am I right?

Of course, how could I forget this bad boy? I have a joke!
What did the japanese say to the bee?
WASABI ?!?! (Like, “What’s up, Bee? Please tell me you got it.)

Of course, how could I forget this bad boy? I have a joke for you guys.  What did the japanese say to the bee?  WASABI ?!?! (Like, "What's up, Bee? Please tell me you got it.)

I love bento boxes because you have everything you need in a neat container.

I love bento boxes because you have everything you need in a neat container.

Shabu-Shabu/ Sukiyaki dinners are the best. I can’t wait for my aunt to come and invite us to have dinner with them. hehe.

Shabu-Shabu/ Sukiyaki dinners are the best. I can't wait for my aunt to come and invite us to dinner hehe

Anything Katsu goes in my belly.

Anything Katsu goes in my belly.

I love  any type of Japanese cracker! Perfect snack to have when you’re on the go!

japanese-food-rice-crackers-senbei-big

I made myself hungry. Great.

Japan for the ‘Travel Destination where I love the food’.

*All pictures are from Google Images.

Day #5 – A Travel Destination That Reminds You Of Someone

Space Needle
Space Needle
Gum Wall
Gum Wall
Pike Place Market
Pike Place Market
Waterfall Garden
Waterfall Garden
S-A-M: Seattle Art Museum
S-A-M: Seattle Art Museum
Seattle Underground Tour
Seattle Underground Tour
Myrtle Edwards Park
Myrtle Edwards Park
Cherry Blossom at the University of Washington
Cherry Blossom at the University of Washington
The Fremont Troll
The Fremont Troll
Original Starbucks
Original Starbucks

Seattle reminds me of Marco. Can’t wait to see where you grew up!: )

Seattle, Washington for Day # 5

**all pictures are from Google Images

Day #4 – A Travel Destination That Makes You Laugh

542003_3896296688905_1665641885_n

I just remember laughing a lot in Edinburgh (pronounced Edinbruuuuh – saying it this way instead of EdinBERG, which is how it’s supposed to be pronounced based on how the letters are placed togehter,  always makes me giggle. mehehe). One weekend when I was in London, Trisha invited me to go to Scotland with her mom’s friends. So, on a cold English morning, we drove at around 5am to Edinburgh.

That's my friend, Trisha : )
That’s my friend, Trisha : )

We were laughing a lot because we were shooting for the travel video that we decided to make. Also, the Scottish accent was so cool and fun to listen to, it made me grin every time! Being with Trisha just made it all the more fun and memorable!

We were allmost always at this state.
We were almost always at this state.
I forgot what the pillars behind us are called! Breath taking view from up there!
I forgot what the pillars behind us are called…
Edinbruuh behind us. A friend of ours said all our pictures look like couple pictures. haha.
Edinbruuh behind us. A friend of ours said all our pictures look like couple pictures. haha.
The sun added to the happy vibes.
The sun added to the happy vibes. The view from up there was UH-MAAAY-ZING.
I think that's Arthur's Peak. I am 2% sure.
I think that’s Arthur’s Peak. I am 2% sure.
We wanted to roll down the hill. We did eventually, but on the not so steep part. hehe
We wanted to roll down the hill. We did eventually, but on the not so steep part. hehe
Tourist jump shot picture:  CHECK!
Tourist jump shot picture: CHECK!
We strolled around town while we were looking for a legit Scottish costume for Trisha's collection.
We strolled around town while we were looking for a legit Scottish costume for Trisha’s collection.
The photographer asked for a really wacky pose. We did our best.
The photographer asked for a really wacky pose. We did our best.

So, there you have it! I had a hard time thinking about a place for this post because it’s not like there’s this one place where you can go, “oh, (place), you so silly! haha stop it!” Do you feel me? Anyway….

Edinburgh, Scotland for the ‘Travel destination that makes you laugh’ 

Day #3 – A Travel Destination That (Makes) Would Make You Happy

This is really a tough for me. Whichever place I think of, I feel like it’s the perfect one for this day’s post. But, I think of another place, and that one just knocks the last place out of the park! But, I think I’m going with my all time favorite travel destination ever since I was a little girl. I’ve never been to this place (hence, the slight edit of the title), so, if I do get the change to visit, that would really really make me very happy!

Are you guys familiar with the story of the Grand Duchess Anastasia? I fell in love with the history behind it,  as well as the urban legends. When I was a kid, the movie, Anastasia, was a big thing. It became one of my favorite animated movies of all time. It took place, of course, in Russia.

So, why Russia? Aside from Anastasia influencing me, when I was a kid, I’ve always wanted to learn ballet at the Bolshoi Ballet Company. Everyone in the dance world knows that Russians are one of the best dancers in the world, and the Bolshoi Ballet Company produce the best of the best ballet dancers ever. I wanted to be like the prima ballerinas I saw on TV. Sadly, that didn’t happen. Right now, I can hope to at least watch one of their full length performances, like Swan Lake or Giselle, at the Bolshoi Theater. Totally on my bucket list! In addition to that, I’ve always wanted to learn Russian! This just all came from watching that animated movie. haha. cray cray child.

I totally know Russia isn’t the best place to be in, and I know that maybe when I go there, I might have the ‘shattered glass effect’. But, who cares?

Now, enough chatting. Let’s look at some pictures!

Bolshoi Ballet Company (photo from Google Images)
Bolshoi Ballet Company
(photo from Google Images)
Bolshoi Theater (photo from Google Images)
Bolshoi Theater
(photo from Google Images)
Catherine Palace, St. Petersburg, Russia (photo from Google Images)
Catherine Palace, St. Petersburg, Russia
(photo from Google Images)
Peter Paul Cathedral  (photo from Google Images)
Peter Paul Cathedral
(photo from Google Images)
Church of Our Savior, St. Petersburg, Russia (photo from google images)
Church of Our Savior, St. Petersburg, Russia
(photo from google images)
Druzhba Narodov Fountain (photo from google images)
Druzhba Narodov Fountain
(photo from google images)
Saint Basil Cathedral (photo from google images)
Saint Basil Cathedral
(photo from google images)
Red Square, Moscow, Russia  (photo from google images)
Red Square, Moscow, Russia
(photo from google images)

So, there you have it. I’m totally loving this challenge so far! : )

Russia for the ‘travel destination that would make me happy’.