TRAVEL: Japan Day 5


It’s our last day in Osaka and it makes me really sad to be leaving this place. But since we have an afternoon flight, we decided to have a free day. We didn’t really have any concrete plan.

First official business: Leave our hotel and drop our baggage so we can still roam around. It’s our first time to ride their cab! We never really did during our stay. We hopped from one place to another by using their trains.

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And we dropped our bags off. It’s a good thing Jude read this somewhere. We also saw this in Namba, in the underpass in the ‘malls’ / stores that you pass by going to the train but we felt it wasn’t that secured so we did some research. And we ended up here, just outside one of the train stations. (so it’s a plus)

Then we head to Dotonbori for Lunch. ❤ We decided to try some maki and sushi to fully experience authentic Japan. We picked Nigiri Chojiro, Conveyor Belt Sushi. It’s also one of the top restaurants in Yelp.

Ofcourse he had to order the set / sampler one. He says it’s really good and tasted fresh.

Me, on the otherhand ordered a which is also good. Nothing fancy, nothing special either. And we were also amazed how the order process go, since you order it from a computer. What’s more amazing is how much they trust their customers.

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Because we had Japanese for Lunch, of course I was not full. 😛 Who would be? I only ordered Tuna Yakiniku! :/ Ergo, I was eager for some dessert!

We asked our friend, Yelp for some best desserts in Dotonbori and was glad we were just a block away and to our surprise, there was a LONG line for takeout. We went inside and they still had a sit down area on the second floor.

Rikuro Ojisan

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We had to wait for 10 minutes to be seated. The wait was okay. It was nice to wait in the stairway rather than on the streets because of the weather. 😛

When we were finally seated, we ordered their set which comes with 1 pastry and a coffee. (I forgot how much). We ordered one each since they have a minimum amount for you to be seated and dine.

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I don’t normally eat cheesecake but it was fine. Hubby liked it and I was able to finish my chocolate slice. We both had some coffee to go with our pastries.

Next Stop: Shisekai Area

On the way to Tsutenkaku Tower, we passed by a certain area similar to Dotonbori. I wanted to stroll and try different food stalls but he reminded me that we had limited time. :/

Tsutenkaku, a symbol of Osaka is 64 meters in height. It reminded citizens of the famous Eiffel Tower in Paris.

There’s a lot to see inside the tower. There’s no point going in one of the tallest buuilding if you won’t, at the very least look at the view from the highest point, right? So here we are, admiring the view from the top.

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They have a separate floor for a dining area and for souvenirs too.

But most importantly, we lined up to have a glimpse and touch Mr. Biliken. 

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We were told that Mr. Biliken bring luck and happiness to those who touches his legs! ❤ After a short trip to Shinsekai, we had to rush back to the airport to have some dinner before our flight.

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We had five days of Japanese food so by this time, I was craving for some Chinese, and Chinese it is! I absolutely love YANGCHOW rice. ❤ I can eat it everyday! We also had some hot shrimp salad. ❤

This is our last train ride back to the airport. Thank you so much, Japan! I fell in love. Now I know why everyone wants to keep coming back. ❤ ❤

TRAVEL TAGAYTAY: Nurture Wellness Village


I have been wanting to go here. Luckily, some of our good friends gave this as our wedding gift. ❤ We were greeted warmly by the receptionist and was offered welcome teas.

They also have this wood theme to their surroundings down to their furniture and displays. Reception area and their restaurant is open air so it’s windy. ❤

We tried the Glamping Package. Their Glamping Site is situated in their garden where you can also find the bonfire area. Inside the tent, you will find a queen size bed, 2 pillows, towel, a table and 2 chairs, and a dresser. It also includes a set of coffee / water station and a switch! (thank god)

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Thumbs Up: It’s air conditioned but it gets pretty chilly at night given the standard temperature in Tagaytay already.

Downside: The tent has no locks and you can practically hear the conversation of the tents nearby and you have a common restroom (about 20 steps away from the tents)

We also tried their Signature Massage. ❤

Massage comes with the usual washing of your feet and the nice thing that’s different with them was they include a hot/warm bag during the massage where they place them underneath your pillow in the stubborn areas such as lower back and shoulders. ❤

At night, we brought Ruffles, Maltesers and Wine – our usuals during a movie marathon.

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For Breakfast, there’s a stub that they give out during the registration. Service was a bit late. The breads  were served first with butter paired with lugaw.

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For the mains, they served sweet and sour fish, scrambled eggs and what seemed like kaldereta / afritada.

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I don’t know exactly why they would serve sweet and sour fish and afritada during breakfast. :/ I prefer longganisa, bacon, hotdog, ham or even local viands such as danggit or pusit or dilis. that’s why we both didn’t enjoy the breakfast. 😦

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Still, Thank you for the memories, Nurture and Wellness. ❤ and our Second Glamping Experience.

EAT TAGAYTAY: The Farm at San Benito


The Farm at San Benito has a reputation for being a place to improve overall well being, one’s mental and physical health. They have what they call their five pillars which are Diagnose, Cleanse, Nourish, Repair and Sustain.

But it comes with a price, understandably. And this is something too expensive for us already. But just to get a taste of what they can offer, we went there for a 4 Course Vegan Lunch which we purchased from Deal Grocer.

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The place is quite nice and true to its promise, it was very peaceful. It’s full of greenery and free from distraction.

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We were escorted to their Alive! Restaurant, featuring a cabin like place. Sunlight is coming from all corners. ❤

Soup – Mung Bean (Php 200) with 87.4 calories – Braised mung beans with bitter gourd, malabar spinach and moringa leaves.

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It tasted Miso, but for me, it was bland. I cannot really distinguish what but it was lacking something.

Salad – Fern Salad (Php 200) with 54.6 calories – Freshly picked fern leaves tossed in Calamansi juice, tomatoes and onion.

Surprisingly, I loved the Calamansi juice! I love anything sour so probably, that’s what it was. This is the best course for me. I can this eat again. ❤

Main – Tofu Steak (Php 400) with 216.5 calories – Grilled Tofu served with coconut soy, balsamic and coco nectar sauce topped with fresh onion rings and a choice of mashed potato or brown rice.

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UHHHH. Just a little background – I tried a tofu meal in Wilflour and I absolutely loved it. So with my personal assurance that it would taste okay, I ordered this tofu steak and to my surprise, I hated it. 😦 the tofu was bland and a bit hard. I guess they didn’t soak it in water. They have this coco nectar sauce which tasted a bit like barbeque, which helped, A BIT. I didn’t even get to finish 1 slice of tofu. I gave it to my hubby.

Main – Chickpea Omelet with Creamed Carrot and Spinach (Php 400) with 363.3 calories – Chickpea Omelet filled with potato and carrots served with cream of carrot and cream of kale with a dash of extra virgin oil

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This, not so much but because it has egg, I liked it. and I also eat carrots and spinach so it was fairly okay. It was not delicious but if I were really hungry, I cannot really finish this compared to the Tofu Steak.

Dessert – Mango Sansrival (Php 300) with 344.8 calories – Frozen mango with coconut milk on a bed of ground chocolate chips topped with coconut cream

I was a bit hesitant and unwilling to try this because there’s a lot of coconut in the description and if you remember, I really don’t like coconut. But this tastes exactly like any mango sansrival. It was delicious, even. ❤

Although I enjoyed the Fern Salad and the Mango Sansrival, I don’t think I will be willing to eat here again. :/ It’s a waste for me because I really expected that they could create a really delicious vegan mains but I was disappointed.

We enjoyed strolling though. And oh, BTW. We didn’t know this when we visited but when you buy their lunch in Deal Grocer, it’s like a free trip for the day. You can use all of their amenities, swimming or join activities for the day.

 

TRAVEL: Japan Day 4


For our fourth day in Japan, hubby got us another Klook Tour: Kyoto and Nara Day Tour! I’m excited to meet the deers since they always seem so friendly. ❤

Since we were joining a Group Tour from Klook, our Pick-up Location is in VIP Villa in Namba at 7:50 am. But the hubby wants to be on time, and when I say on time – it means an hour early. We were there by 7:00 am! And I guess other guests had the same thing in mind since several joiners were there already. (And I noticed that almost half of our group are Filipinos too. Haha)

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The drive from Namba to Kyoto was about 2 hours so even though we got up so early, we had time to take a nap. 🙂 First Stop: Kinkaku-ji Temple. (or what they call Golden Temple) Entrance Fee is 400 yen. (but since we got this from Klook, it’s free already)

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The Golden Temple was previously a retirement home but became a Zen Temple. The top two floors are completely covered in Gold Leaf. AND, the temple has burned down several times already. Can you believe it?

I love how peaceful the whole place is. The temple is surrounded by a pond in the middle of a garden full of trees and plants. No wonder it used to be a retirement place.

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But before you get to the temple, you will pass by this house that used to be the living quarters of the head priest. See? It really is surrounded by lovely trees! especially in autumn. ❤

Next Stop: Kasuga Tai-sha

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This place is the most celebrated shrine in Nara and is dedicated to the deity responsible for the protection of the city. It is also one of the most sacred places since a lot of the Gods are enshrined in the place. On the way to this place, our tour guide taught us on how to honor the place: (as seen below, the husband is trying).

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Next: Arashiyama Bamboo Grove

One of the most famous landmarks – the sky high bamboo groves are truly instagrammable. But unfortunately, we didn’t know that we needed to pay extra to go inside the road (at the back of hubby) to get a good picture. As I said, one of the most famous, thus it attracts CRAZY number of tourists!

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We don’t have a good photo to show you the giant bamboos that fill this place. BUT!!! Along side the road leading to it, there’s a LOT of food stands and stores on the road. So we managed to try  the following:

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Husband tried the Ichigo Daifuku – It is a Japanese confection, a mochi filled with bean paste, split into two and a fresh strawberry is placed within. The hubby liked it. ❤ I tried it too but I don’t really eat strawberries. Sooooo. . .

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I normally won’t go for Gyoza since I feel like the meat usually is dry. But this is good. ❤ The sauce is perfect, it was soft and the meat was not dry. Thumbs Up!

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I was pretty excited that there were ice creams in sight but as I looked closely to each store, they were all offering BAMBOO flavored desserts. I don’t eat Matcha and Green Tea so you know where my hesitations are coming from. BUT, I still wanted to try this Bamboo Flavored Soft Ice Cream – and it tastes exactly as matcha. :/ so the hubby finished it by himself.

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We also managed to try Grilled Crabs and Rice Cakes too. There’s a bunch of stores lined up in the streets and I’m a bit overwhelmed. We both wanted to try everything. 😛

Since we consumed most of our time binge-eating in the street, we decided to eat our late lunch in one of the restaurants in front of the parking, so we can see our bus. And obviously, we ate Tempura – the safest order. 😛

Another Stop: Fushimi Inari Taisha – It is famous for its thousands of Vermilion Torii Gates.

It is the most important shrines dedicated to Inari, the god of rice. Also, You have to be really patient – since there are so many tourists here too. You can never really get a shot with no one there to ruin the shot. 😛

Fun Fact: The thousand gates are donated by different individuals — and their names are written on the gates. One gate costs around 400,000 yen.

Our Last Stop: Nara Park

A very large park home to hundreds of deers. ❤

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Like I said, it is home to deers, roaming around freely. ❤ You can interact with them! Deer Crackers are sold at 100 yen for 10 crackers!! And it’s so fun! They are so tame and it seems like no matter how many tourists are there to feed them, they always seem to be hungry.

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The deers are said to be messenger of Gods. At first, I couldn’t decipher which of them are fawns or which of them are the older ones. But after some research, I read that their antlers are removed every October. (so that’s why!) – Antler Cutting Tradition – for safety reasons.

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Another fun fact: Deer Crackers are just wheat flour and rice bran. And all of the profits from the crackers are used for the sole purpose of protecting the deers.

Before we left for Nara, we also found a good spot:

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Going back, I think everyone went back at around 6:30 pm and we left by 7:00 pm. There’s also a store where you can buy your souvenirs even deer shaped chocolates too! ❤

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It’s been good, Nara and Kyoto. ❤ I cannot wait to go back and explore you more! We got back at around 8:30 pm and since it was late, we went to dinner straight.

Dinner at Matsusakagyu Yakiniku M (The restaurant is quite famous so they require reservations.)

A winner in the 2018 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice awards for restaurants, ranking number 1 in Japan, and number 5 in Asia.

We first heard about this place from a friend who is pretty well traveled. We were warned that it is quite pricey — and it is. I believe this is our most expensive meal in our entire stay in Japan.

We ordered the Matsusaka Tasting Platter for 3,000 Yen – 2 pieces for each type of beef. The Beef that’s included are Sirloin Steak, Kyukyoku and Haneshita.

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You will be the one to cook this on grill in front of you. We were taught to cook each side of the beef for at least 2 minutes for the perfect taste. You are also given different sauces to go with it.

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I LOVE MEAT. and I’m amazed how tender the beef is. ❤ it’s so flavorful. Although it’s not quite filling since we shared this, did not regret this as we really wanted to try one of the best in Osaka. ❤

And because we only shared 1 rice (you know how we Filipinos love our rice), the hubby still wanted to eat. We ended up trying Okonomiyaki. We were trying to find a particular place, famous for its Okonomiyaki but we failed.

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We ordered the Pork Okonomiyaki with Big Size Octopus for 550 Yen with Draft Beer at 430 Yen.

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I don’t really eat Okonomiyaki. But I tried it – hubby says it’s good. The size is huge too!

Okonomiyaki, when translated means ‘grilled as you like it’. It’s a Japanese Pancake with cabbage, flour, eggs and variety of meat.

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And that ends our Fourth Day! 😀 We are pretty productive, don’t you think? Sad to be leaving tomorrow. 😦

TRAVEL: Japan Day 3


Of all our planned itinerary for our Osaka Trip, I think this is my husband’s most awaited day. Why? We are going to Universal Studios, Japan! ❤ It’s his first time in Universal and more importantly, there’s a Harry Potter themed park!

We were lined up by 7:00 am and I am not over reacting when I tell you that you really need to be there by 7. It’s as if everyone was thinking the same thing, the lines were crazy long already. BTW, We bought our USJ Tickets from Klook too. They have a special ticket that allows bearers an earlier 15 minutes time ahead. It means they get to enter the park at 7:45! and man, it’s a huge difference!

By the time they opened the gates? Everyone, and I literally mean EVERYONE was RUNNING. So yes, we ran too. Haha. Our first stop? Wizarding World of Harry Potter!

In the world of Harry Potter, there’s a walking tour where you can see the different classrooms and corridors of Hogwarts. At the end of the lane, you can enjoy the Forbidden Journey, a 4k  HD ride that lets you join harry during a quidditch play! If you still want a more thrilling ride, you can to the Flight of Hippogriff, a roller coaster ride that takes you to Hagrid’s Hut. It’s a must experience for you to pass by Ollivanders where you can witness how the wands pick you. And tip? they actually choose a lucky wizard among the tourist and the chosen one gets to go home with a wand! You can also eat at Three Broomsticks Restaurant to get the full experience of Harry’s World.

And never, should anyone forget to try the Butter Beer! You can find it anywhere in the Wizarding World.

Luckily, the butter beers comes in Hot or Cold variety. And since it was freezing that time, we chose Hot Beers. ❤ It’s their signature non-alcoholic drink in butterscotch flavor. You can also get it in a collector’s item souvenir stein. ❤

Second Attraction? Jaws. The iconic giant, man-eating shark attacks during the boat tour. And contrary what one may think, no. You won’t get wet.

And because we were damn hungry already, we ate at Amity Landing Restaurant in the Jaws Land.

By the time we finished eating, it was raining. :/ We had no umbrella but because we wanted to maximize our time and we have our jackets on, we walked.

 

Next Up: The Flying Dinosaur. We chose not to engage in this ride because we were both scared. Haha. We heard that there was a 25.9 meter drop to escape the dinosaur!

And Of course, I managed to squeeze in some sweets! We tried this chocolate churros from one of the stands. They also have some Matcha flavored churros.

Next Attraction: Minions

The lines in this Minions ride is crazy!! It took us about 45 minutes to actually get inside. There are 2 rides here: Despicable Me Minion and Freeze Ray Sliders! Both are bearable for the scaredy cats like us. 😀

And here, we are transported in New York, one of my favorite places. ❤ For our next attraction: The Amazing Spiderman 3D

Thank you, Universal! You will always be one of the places that we will visit every time we return to Osaka! ❤

Since we finished early around 4 in the afternoon, we chose to binge eat our way to Dotonbori. First Stop: Ichiran Ramen

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The most iconic symbol of Japan (I guess) and their most famoust – Ichiran! It’s a good thing we didn’t go there during dinner time. ❤ We had no trouble getting in. It’s freakin good and I’m now a believer! It’s so good!!

And as if that’t not enough, we went straight to Atchichi-Hompo.

The line was long but it was fairly quick. The takoyaki is made right in front of the customers. I don’t really eat them but my husband says that it tastes authentic.

We then tried the BIG ass grilled crabs of Kani Doraku. The place was packed! If standing is not an issue and you don’t plan on dining in, it’s a good thing they have a stand where you can just order the grilled crabs.

It’s HUGE. It doesn’t taste any different but it sure was delicious. ❤

On our way back to our side, we simply had to take a picture with the famous running man!

To spare you the curiosity, The Glico Man was famous because it was marketed as a wrapper of an energy bar – where when you eat them, you can run for 300 m! (In case you were wondering).

And before we went home, we tried the Turkish Ice Cream. It’s one of the must try desserts in Dotonbori.

There’s a whole show of trickery before you can actually taste their icecream! I’ll spare you the details so you can enjoy them first hand. But really, the ice cream was so good! I didn’t mind eating the ice cream even though it was freezing cold.

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This may probably be one of my favorite days because we were able to cross so many food on my bucket list. ❤ The day was so tiring but I love that we were able to visit so many places and tried a lot of food. ❤

TRAVEL: Japan Day 1 and 2


We finally tied the knot! ❤ and for our Honeymoon, we visited Osaka, Japan. We nearly had no time to do our respective research but the husband managed to get us a few tickets through Klook.

HOTEL: Best Western Hotel – It’s only a 2-minute walk to the train station. There’s also a family mart beside  the station. It’s a quite neighborhood.

Day 1 – We arrived in Osaka at around 9 in the evening and got lost. We still had to learn how the transportation system works. Thus, we arrived at our hotel at around 11 in the evening.

And like I said, there’s a convenient store nearby. For dinner, we purchased the items below: (spicy seafood noodles, 2 chicken fillet, 1 box of rice and 1 stick of chicken skin)

Day 2 – We are up and about at 7 am. we head to Osaka Castle Park. We then had the opportunity to try another set of breakfast at a convenient store just outside the park. We were able to try the Melon Pan, Maple Syrup Pancakes and their store coffee.

You can already take lots take of pictures in the garden. The garden is absolutely beautiful especially when we went the there as the trees are already in various colors.

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Inside the Castle Museum, you can try-on a battle armor they used to wear before. It’s the Kabuto Helmet and Armor.

The Nishinomaru Garden is a lawn that houses miles and miles of trees, a tea house and the Osaka Guest House.

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The Osaka Museum of History is just across the Osaka Castle.  It opens from 9 am – 5 pm.

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It shows life sized ancient times of trading, shopping exhibits and local villages.

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And because we had a deadly long walk, we were heavily starving by this time.  The hubby searched for the Top 1 restaurant in the area and we ended with Tokumasa Moronomiya.

Dubbed as having the Best Curry Udon in Osaka, we just had to try it.

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We both ordered the sets. The sets run from 600 – 900 yen. We ate Beef Set Curry Meal and Tempura Curry Meal Sets both for 900 yen. I was doubtful about the curry udon since I’ve tried some before and I didn’t like it. The curry udon was flavorful and so filling. The Beef Yakiniku was really good. I finished my rice meal. The tempura was good too.

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We were so full and I was really happy with my order. We then decided to take the cruise of Aqua Liner Cruise in Yodayabashi Pier.

The Aqua Liner Cruise can be boarded in 4 different locations. The glass roof of the boat can be lowered when passing some of Osaka’s lowest bridges on route. It also explains the history and other landmarks. The river is lined with different colorful trees which makes it the perfect scenery during the cruise.

And since we already had our rest during the cruise, we then walked to the center of Umeda to see the HEP Five Ferris Wheel. The Shopping Mall is open from 11 am – 9 pm, the restaurants are open until 10:30 pm and the ferris wheel is open until 11 pm.

The HEP Five is home to 7 floors of clothing stores, an amusement floor on the 8th and the famous ferris wheel on the 7th floor.

The highest point is at 106 meters above the ground and has 52 seater gondolas. It offers an amazing view of the Busy area of Umeda.

For Dinner, we head to the famous Dotonbori Area, home to the best food in Osaka. We searched for the must try dishes in Dotonbori and of the top is Kushikatsu. The Kushikatsu Daruma is one of the best out of the bunch.

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Kushikatsu means deep fried skewered food. We tried the 1800 Yen set. This is a set that includes some beef, shrimp, rice cake, asparagus, quail egg, pork cutlet, chicken meatball, sausage, cheese, chicken karaage and sweet potato. It is dipped with thick tonkatsu sauce.

Everything practically tastes the same but I especially like the beef, sausage and cheese. It’s a bit filling but not particularly full. I can still eat. I’m glad we tried this. ❤

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We ended the night strolling the streets of Dotonbori and mentally ticking the food that we want to try the next day. And oh, this is probably my favorite place. Dotonbori is alive, it’s full of people and you can already see the culture and practices of the locals. It’s full of tourists too and it reminds me a bit of the Times Square in New York, everyone doing their own thing, everybody busy with something.

And that’s where we end our first day. ❤ ❤ ❤

TRAVEL: Coron ’19


It’s my second time and apparently, Coron doesn’t disappoint. Other than the fact, that I wasn’t able to actually go under water, I still enjoyed being a bystander. 😛

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Majestic waters of Coron, Palawan. ❤ ❤ ❤

We are actually here because my cousin, my brother and his girlfriend’s first time here.

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For the first day, we had our second prenup. You wouldn’t believe what we had to go through. I suggest for everyone travelling the beach, make sure not to wait for the water to be low tide. Dang! such an experience.

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Kudos to this team who was so patient, so bubbly and energetic. I was so hesitant to try them at first but the outcome was just how we requested. 🙂

As you can see, the hubby to be is so happy to be with me. 😀 HAHA. We are now about to start our day at the beach!

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At the famous spot where every freakin’ tourist has a picture.

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This is where they enjoyed their time in the water at Kayangan Lake. 

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And here, we had lunch at the Green Lagoon at a floating bamboo house. ❤

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We had a lot of free time in our hands. Most of us swam, some kayak, snorkel and everything in between.

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The Green Lagoon at its finest. ❤

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And a picture at the Maquinit Hotspring. ❤

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I will be creating a video to capture what transpired during the trip. ❤ ❤ ❤

Until next time! ❤

TRAVEL: CORON DAY 2


Palawan can never and should never be traveled without devoting a day for beach! Ain’t that right? so you know where we spent the day huh? Sand and sun.

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First Stop: Kayangan Lake

Where the famous overlooking view is at. You should have a wonderful photographer friend with you, our tour guide was a failure. Thus, it’s almost impossible to see us in this picture. Haha

We had to go down and up, to reach the actual Kayangan Lake.

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And if you swim just a bit more, you get to swim under a big rock or cove or something until you reach the Hidden Lagoon. 

This is CYC Beach – it was a bit small, but it’s peaceful and white and serene.

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We had an amazing seafood fest  in front of the ocean. ❤

And they got to look around and explore in the Skeleton Wreck part of the ocean..

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We ended the day with a relaxing hot spring experience at Maquinit Hot Spring.

I’m glad I have my ❤ with me all throughout.

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TRAVEL: CORON DAY 1


Alright! If you have been following my life thru this blog, we have this annual out of town trip with my college friends and whoever are plus ones are. HAHA. You’ll meet a new one in this blog.
This year, we went to Coron since we haven’t visited the resort of Tandem, one of our friend. It has been so stressful at work so I was really looking forward to this trip. And finally, here we are.
We boarded at Terminal 4, which is a bit near my house. The three of us are early but 1 couple were really late and we almost missed the cut off.
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By the time we land, we were greeted by a placard of Ana and Friends & definitely some rainfall. The van was spacious enough and the ride was less than 30 minutes from the airport. Whew. I wanted to sleep but the road is being fixed so it was obviously bumpy.
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We got there by around 2pm, dropped our bags, freshen a bit, toured the resort and finally settled for some lunch at about 3pm. Deadpan Hungryyy!
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We ordered the following:
Bagnet with Pinakbet, Stuffed Squid, Kilawin and Sisig. ❤ All from the in-house kitchen of Sophia’s Garden Resort. And did I mention that everything was absolutely delicious? ❤
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Since we only have the late afternoon to ourselves,
Our first stop: Mt. Tapyas
Dreadfully climbed 700 steps to the top. Whew. If you’re worried about slippery mud and soil, don’t fret. There’s stairs to save the day. BUT remember the magical pull of gravity, weighing down all your strength, every carbs is put to good use. But man was I so tired!
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There’s no better way to enjoy the view than to share it with friends and  the most important person in your life.  After a very tiring two hours of our lives, we head to The Viewdeck Grillhouse. 

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After this glorious dinner, we head back to the resort and the biggest surprise of my life was waiting for me. My future, is waiting for me. ❤ (due for another post).

But before we went to sleep, we struck out a few songs, some soju and a lot of laughter. ❤

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One of the best nights. ❤

TRAVEL: SINAGTALA


Months and months… We have not seen each other for so long. A little stopover for some lunch, all thanks to the generosity of Cortez Family..

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Another destination in Bataan: Sinagtala

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Alfonso + In-between Cards Game. 😀 Annnddd, we always have a target! Guess who?

 

Am really grateful for the people in this photo. 😀

 

When there was a bit less crowd… we then head off to – the pool.

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and we deserve some buffet, I reckon…

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TRAVEL: SAN FRANCISCO


Obviously, outlets are a priority. 😀 We went to livermore, about 30 minutes from San Francisco City. ❤ Ready your wallets! Aside from 40% – 70% discount, they also give you coupons for the day that gives you an additional 10% – 20% discount on top of the usual. ❤

 

Then, we went to the famous Fisherman’s Wharf, alongside Pier 39.

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It is one of the busiest tourist attractions in San Francisco. You’ll see souvenir shops and specialty stores in both sides of the streets on the way to Pier 39. 😀

 

I also got to try Lotus Biscoff Coffee. ❤ ❤ It’s so good!! Perfect to combat the windy nights of SF.

 

We also went to Ghirardelli Square

 

It is now the home of a stylish collection of shops and restaurants—one of the most pleasant places to stroll and shop in the city. Wind through passageways and across plazas to visit an assortment of boutiques and gift shops, or relax with bay views from a selection of restaurants. If you have kids along, you probably have one destination in mind more than any other: the Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop.

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I am 110% you’ll be overwhelmed inside their chocolate shop!

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Of our downtime moments. ❤ We also bought tickets for the Cable Car. 

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You can buy them at Pier 39. We bought it for $7.00, a single ride ticket. You can buy it for $21 where you can hop on and off the cable stops around the city for the day.

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We hopped off at the last stop, Union Square. It is the commercial hub of the city. Many major hotels and department stores are packed into the area surrounding the actual square. Numerous upscale boutiques, restaurants, nightspots and galleries occupy the spaces tucked between the larger buildings.

This is where you’ll also find the famous Cheesecake Factory with an overlooking view of the whole Union Square. The restaurant is situated in their roofdeck but be sure to make a reservation. Or if you’re planning to have lunch there, be sure to be at restaurant around 10. When we got there about 12:30, we were already 23rd on the list. WOW right? So no. We did not wait.

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Okayyyyyy… so my favorite of all SF Spots —- Palace of Fine Arts

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It is the last remaining structure from the 1915 Panama Pacific Exposition. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this classical looking building is beautifully situated on a lagoon that reflects the mirror image on the surface of the calm water, while ducks and geese drift by. (planetware).

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Ofcourse, you can’t visit this place without going to Napa Valley, famous for Wine Tasting.  It’s known for hundreds of hillside vineyards in the Napa Valley wine region.

 

They actually have a wine train where you get to visit at least 5 wineries. But we opted to just visit 1 — V. Sattui Winery

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This particular winery offers 5 wines for $20. 😀 Good deal right? You can choose from a long list and they will also help you choose and recommend based on your preference.

 

Finally ticked off Napa Valley on my list! But I have to bring judey here. :/ He should be here.

 

Want to know another first time for me? Sleep in a yacht!

 

It’s a real work! It’s nice to experience it but I wouldn’t want to sleep in one again. I don’t normally get sea sick or car sick — but sleeping on a boat is like floating for hours and hours.

And finally, the movie famous — Golden Gate Bridge

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Connecting San Francisco with Marin County and other districts further north, the Golden Gate Bridge was, at one time, designated the greatest man-made sight in the United States.

 

Hope to be back again, San Francisco! ❤ There’s still a lot I haven’t seen. :/

TRAVEL NEW YORK: DAY 4


Terrible sadness floats in the air.. because it’s our last day in the city.. since it was Ash Wednesday, we heard mass at St. Monica’s Chapel

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Also, before we left.. we checked out some stores and I’m just really really glad that even in some parts of the world… MY brand, my brand is highlighted in different stores. ❤

Side note: Please patronize Champion Authentic Athletic Apparel and Champion Life!

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And some paparazzi shots from my cousin as well. ❤

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It’s official … New York City has my ❤

TRAVEL NEW YORK: DAY 3


Our third day starts with a trip to THE STATUE OF LIBERTY, a gift of friendship from the people of France to the United States and is recognized as a universal symbol of freedom and democracy. The Statue of Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886.  It was designated as a National Monument in 1924.

Each person has to pay about $14 for the ferry. Mind you, the line was super long and going inside the boat has a little bit of stampede situation since there was no proper line.

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Also, the priority here is for you to go inside first for you to grab a seat inside. If you’re like me who easily gets cold… you have to stay inside. When the temperatures drop and its hella windy outside, the cold is terrible. Upon reaching the island, you can freely roam the island and take good pictures..

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The ferry boats are scheduled to arrive every 30 minutes so if you’re done taking pictures, there’s also a cafe and restaurant slash souvenir shops in the island while you’re waiting for the boat.

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After our trip to the liberty, we were so hungry and feeling a bit under the weather (literally).. so we took our lunch at Fridays near Wall St. 

Wall Street is one of the world’s most famous streets. Historically known as the center of New York’s financial district, Wall Street is often associated with wealth and ambition in America.

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One of the Financial District’s most famous symbols is the ‘Charging Bull’ Statue (The bull represents a bull market, a constantly rising market).

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I know you are familiar withe 911 bombing that left thousands of casualties.. we went there to pray and pay our respects. Twin Towers of World Trade Center.  You see the square hole in the middle of the water? That’s where the building used to stand.

After which, we also visited the mall with a unique architecture across the memorial building — Westfield Mall World Trade Center

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It has has roughly 365,000 square feet of retail space, which once again makes it the largest shopping mall in Manhattan. It just opened last August 2016.

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And on to my second favorite part of NYC — Brooklyn Bridge.

The bridge is really something. It has this majestic feel that captures you in an instant. It is lovely in all ways. It looms majestically over New York City’s East River, linking the two boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn. Since 1883, its granite towers and steel cables have offered a safe and scenic passage to millions of commuters and tourists, trains and bicycles, pushcarts and cars. The bridge’s construction took 14 years, involved 600 workers. (see here)

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And the last stop for today —- DUMBO. (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) is a neighborhood in the Newyork City Borough of Brooklyn. The area known as DUMBO used to be known as Gairville. It encompasses two sections: one located between the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges.

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I love you, again and again.. New York City. ❤

TRAVEL NEW YORK: DAY 2


The second day of our visit was a lot more better – no rain and no luggage in toll. A better morning walking the streets of New York..

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And we are going to the most photographed, scenic, well used scenery of park – CENTRAL PARK 

 

 

Yes, it’s the most famous park from the movie Maid in Manhattan, Enchanted, Spiderman, Men in Black, Eat Pray Love, Bridewars, Night at the museum, Devil wears Prada, Hitch, 13 going on 30, Sweet Home Alabama, Two weeks Notice and You’ve got mail among all the other movies. Have I pysched you up yet? I have to say — It’s just so beautiful. ❤

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Central Park is a must-see for anyone visiting the five boroughs, no matter the time of year. The 843-acre destination is Manhattan’s most famous park, full of trees, gardens, rolling meadows, arches, sculptures, statues and vistas.

 

 

Then, the BETHESDA TERRACE AND FOUNTAINwhere Blaire and Chuck got married in Gossip Girl. 😀 

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The two-story terrace, which overlooks the Lake and southern sections of the Ramble, features intricate carvings that represent both the times of day and the four seasons. At the center sits Bethesda Fountain—also known as the Angel of the Waters—a biblical allusion and also a celebration of the water system that first brought water to New York City in 1842.

 

 

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Central Park is probably my most favorite part of New York. ❤

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We walked over to the metro to go to the nearest station to GRAND CENTRAL STATION. It is the most complex station that links route 4,6 and 7 at all times.

 

 

Do you know the movie Friends with Benefits where there was a flashmob dancing to closing time? GAH. I am there. ❤

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And so, there’s this famous burger place that everyone thinks can match up to In & Out so ought to try it out right? It’s SHAKE SHACK, baby!

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Like any other grilled burgers, it’s unnervingly satisfying!! But I have to say, I’d go for the In & Out burgers but Shake Shack fries is so much better. The milkshake is good too! 🙂 Uhh. Burps.

Next on the list? EMPIRE STATE BUILDING

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The world’s tallest building from 1931 to 1977, the Empire State Building is topped with a stepped Art Deco pinnacle that’s floodlit at night and boasts holiday and commemorative colors throughout the year. We only paid to be on the 86th floor, which is the main deck for $39 with tax already although you can still try to go to the 102nd floor. But, you can see everything from the 86th already, so no need to pay for extra. ❤

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From the empire, next stop is about 20 mins away.. Next stop, FLAT IRON BUILDING

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The Flatiron Building was designed by Chicago’s Daniel Burnham as a steel-frame skyscraper clad in white terra-cotta. At 21 stories and 307 ft (93 meters), it was one of the city’s tallest buildings.

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Just right across from the flat iron building. . . EATALY

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Eataly is an Italian market place that has all sorts of chocolates, pastries, a cafe and a grocery in one! ❤

 

And, BTW — I tried their gelato! Italians are not just about the pasta. right? They are famous for their gelatos too! I tried their Stracciatella and it was di-VINE. It was creamy and so, so, so good though it did not taste like hazelnut at all. 😀

 

After finally getting some walls to separate us from the wind outside and celebrating with a gelato and their famous hot chocolate.. we went to SOHO, NEW YORK

So, get this — I was about tired as a monkey at 9 in the evening so I wasn’t able to take a picture. But this place is a prime shopping center where all the branded stores are. They are lovelllyyyy. ❤ Since no one is buying that night.. we walked about 30 minutes before we reached our dinner destination.. KARAKATTA

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This is the nearest place though I mentioned that we had to walk for about 30 minutes before reaching this place. Sadly, the wind was blowing so hard at 3 degrees. It’s a good thing they have ramen and can serve us hot soups, right? so, good choice all in all…

DSCF1380DSCF1378 And that sums up our second day in the lovely city of new york. ❤