ABU DHABI – Dinner at Kuya Juan

Filipino restaurant in UAE that serves alcohol and pork so that is why a lot of Filipinos recommend it. I do not drink or eat pork but was like YEAAH LETS GIVE IT A TRY LOL.

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Tim and I ordered seafood Kare Kare and Chicken Inasal Bacolod style hehe and had ensaladang talong and garlic rice as a side. We ended our meal with a dessert called Leche Flan.

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Leche Flan: Filipino Creme Caramel
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Chicken Inasal Bacolod: Grilled Chicken marinated with Filipino BBQ Sauce
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Seafood Kare Kare: The sauce is made out of peanut butter

Every night, the restaurant has a band that performs old songs and the vibe of the restaurant really does remind me of the Philippines.

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Tim and I give 5/5 for the restaurants service. They are so nice and friendly and make sure you are happy and having a good time.

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MARAMING SALAMAT KUYA JUAN

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Bellion Travels: 3 Days in Taipei, Taiwan

Tim and I have noticed that Taipei has an art district with lots of galleries and museums to visit but since our trip was short and we didn’t have enough time, we just walked around the district but couldn’t make a quick stop but here is what we’ve done in 3 Days.

Day 1:

We bought our transport ticket at the airport to be able to use the metro and the bus, it is very easy to navigate around the city, and you will not find any difficulty.

Our first stop was the National Palace Museum located in the Shilin District. The Museum has a collection of almost 700,000 pieces of ancient Chinese artifacts and artworks.

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Afterwards, we decided to visit temples so we managed to see the Longshan Temple, which was built in 1738, and we saw the Confucius Temple.

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We had a lot of time to kill before the Night Market so we took the train and visited Taipei 101 and went on the 88th and 89th floor. Unfortunately, we could not visit the 101th floor because we had to book in advance. As it got late, we went back to the Shilin District and explored the Night Market.

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Day 2:

Tim booked a tour online to explore another part of Taiwan and we really enjoyed the tour.

The tour included Yehliu Geo Park, Jiufen Old Town, AMei Tea House, Pingxi Lantern and the Grand Hotel Taipei.

Yehliu Geo Park: North of Taiwan. Formations include the famous Queen’s Head. We did a quick stop at the famous Golden waterfall.

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Jiufen Old Tower and AMei Tea House: It’s located on the seaside mountain area in New Taipei City. The place is filled with really old markets from the 14th Century and we visited the famous Amei Tea House for tea and cakes which was also shown in the famous Japanese cartoon called Spirited Away.

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Pingxi: A very old town known for Lanterns. We bought a Lantern and wrote our wishes and we let it go up in the air. I ticked that off my bucket list so it was an experience 🙂

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The Grand Hotel Taipei: Before dropping us to Ningxia, we did quick stop at the Grand Hotel to take pictures.

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Ningxia Night Market was our last stop and the place known for the famous Taiwanese traditional street food.

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Day 3:

We decided to dedicate our last day to shopping and massages. Therefore, we visited Shi-men Ting and the Underground Mall at the Taipei Main Metro Station. Afterwards, we walked around the area of the National Museum and went for a massage.

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Food Adventure in Taiwan

As the Eid holiday was approaching and my family are abroad and busy packing their stuff to move to a new apartment. Tim suggested lets go to Taiwan, for the Eid holiday. I was a bit hesitant at first because of the Typhoon but we said let us just book the flights.

Luckily, the wind redirected to other areas and we had sunshine during our stay. Since it was a last minute trip, we did not have a plan nor an idea of what to discover but I was adamant to have a meal at Din Tai Fung and try Taiwanese cuisine. Click Here to read about Din Tai Fung restaurant in Dubai.

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Din Tai Fung is the only Taiwanese restaurant we know of in UAE, as I mentioned in my Dubai blog, the waiting time to get a table is long and so is the waiting time in Taiwan. Although they do have several branches of the restaurant, it is always full. Nevertheless, it is worth the wait and so we did wait for 70 minutes. The restaurant has more options, is much cheaper than the one in Dubai, and has many pork dishes in the menu. Now, I do not eat pork so they customised my dishes and I loved it.

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Before heading to Taiwan, a friend of ours suggested to try the famous stinky Tofu, which apparently smells worse than Durian. I agree; it smells DISGUSTING but guess what? We tried it. Once you have it, for some reason you become immune to the smell. Tim and I enjoyed some of the street food at the night market but I did not have the courage to try intestines, organs, and all that so I just tried the basics.

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One thing that amused us about Taiwan was its history. The natives of the land are actually Filipino and during the Chairman Mao, many Chinese people fled to Taiwan and started a new life on that tiny island and afterwards Japanese people moved to Taiwan and settled there for 50 – 60 years so the Taiwanese cuisine is a blend of Japanese, Filipino and mainly Chinese. Tim and I went to two Taiwanese/Japanese restaurants that were artistically prepared and served. It was delicious and I would love to go back just to eat there again.

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I have a sweet tooth and if you love desserts, I highly recommend the sun cakes and the green tea cakes made of beans and matcha. I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE THEIR CAKES. I bought five boxes of cakes just for myself to have with my Chinese tea.

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Anyway, I will blog separately about our Taiwan travel itinerary and places we visited but I must admit Taiwanese food needs a blog dedicated to their delicacies and delicious cuisine.

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ABU DHABI – Dinner at Katsuya

Yas Mall opened a new Japanese Restaurant and damn it’s expensive. The restaurant is called Katsuya. Honestly, it should be under fine dining.

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Since I started a new job, I thought it would be a great idea to invite Tim for a meal. This time, I decided to go full on meat since I was treating Tim and he is not really fond of vegetarian dishes.

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While reading the chef’s signature dishes, I came across Black Cod which reminded me of Zuma. It’s my favourite dish from Zuma, I LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE IT. Of course, I ordered the dish, it doesn’t taste as good as Zumas HOWEVER, it is the closest than any other restaurants I’ve tried and so was the price LOL.

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We also ordered Wagyu beef since Tim is a  massive red meat lover and I’m not but I gave it a try and the quality of the meat was fantastic.

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We also had crispy chicken and mochi for dessert. For drinks, we ordered Jasmine Tea and it was WOW.

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I highly recommend it but heads up, it’s extremely expensive.

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Images of Beirut 2019

I wanted to take a break and travel to Beirut before I started my new job but unfortunately Tim couldn’t join because of work and he is still under probation so I travelled by myself for 4 days to visit friends and families in Beirut.

Here are some photos of Beirut through the lens of Bellion Travels. Hopefully, we will be visiting Beirut soon.

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Tim’s 30th Birthday in Nepal

Tim’s Birthday was on 23rd September and today I blogged about his birthday. I had a lot of pending blog posts and finally, I got the time to blog about his Birthday.

I planned Tim’s birthday as a surprise but I had to tell him where we were going because obviously he needs to know what to pack but I did not tell him where in Nepal and what we are actually doing.

Our first stop was New Delhi, a 3 hours layover to go to Kathmandu. At Kathmandu airport, I made Tim walk for 10 minutes to the Domestic Airport and we flew to Pokhara. Tim had no idea where we were going and what we were doing.

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Day 1: 21st September 2018

We stayed at a place called MingTang Garden Cottage. The place was cozy and warm and has a small garden to enjoy the fresh air. Tim and I went for a walk in Pokhara City and passed by the lake and of course had a lovely Nepalese meal at a local restaurant. At night, we went for a body massage to relax after having a very long flight.

Day 2: 22nd September 2018

Tour guide picked us up from our accommodation and that was my surprise gift for Tim’s 30th. We went PARAGLIDING. Afterwards, we went for a boat ride to trekking all the way up the small mountain to visit the Peace Temple. Yeah! I wasn’t peaceful when we arrived. Later, we went on a boat ride around the lake and headed back to our hotel.

Day 3: 23rd September 2018 – Tim’s 30th Birthday

We travelled to Kathmandu and stayed at Kumari Boutique Hotel. We booked a day tour of Kathmandu and visited

Kathmandu Durbar Square

Pashupatinath Temple

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At night, I invited Tim to Melrose Restaurant and Bar for a Birthday Meal.

Day 4: 24th September 2018 – Last Day in Nepal

We visited Kasthamandap, Narayanhity Palace, Taleju Temple, Local Market and had Coffee at the Garden of Dreams.

We had a great time in Nepal. So far, we have listed Pokhara as one of our favourite destinations. Hope we get to visit Nepal again and hopefully I will be fit LOL

Eid Holiday in Bangkok

Tim, Mimi and I were having lunch at YoSushi and were discussing Bangkok and that’s when we realised we 3 should travel there. So Tim took out his mobile phone and booked our flights with Etihad Airlines and Mimi took out her phone and booked our hostel stay. We stayed at a hostel called Once Again Hostel. Hell Yeah! it was so random.

We decided to travel during the Eid Al Adha holiday since it was 5 days off which included the weekend. We took a day off from work and spent 6 days in Bangkok together mostly going for massages.

Day 1: 

We arrived in Bangkok in the evening, checked in our hostel and visited Khao San Road had dinner and of course massage.

Day 2: 

We booked our tour with the hostel and went on a 2 hours drive to the Floating Market called Damnoen Saduak. That is where we all tried the coconut ice cream for the first time and it was HEAVEN. As we headed back to Bangkok we went for a Temple Tour around the city and visited the famous temples below.

Wat Phra Kaew
Wat Pho (Temple of the Reclining Buddha)
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At night, we visited Rot Fai Market.

Day 3: SHOPPING DAY

We visited the Art Museum, Terminal 21, MBK Mall, Siam Discovery and the Cat Cafe. We also had dinner at a restaurant called the Condom Restaurant which promotes safe sex.

Day 4: 

We went to the Creative District and visited Warehouse 30 and they sell the most amazing vintage and quirky items and had the best CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM EVER. They served only chocolate ice cream but different levels of chocolate. We later went to River City to check out the galleries. We took a boat to cross the river and ended up having Pad Thai at a local street food restaurant. As it got darker, the rain poured like crazy so we went to 2 malls Siam Paragon and Central World. The rain got worse so we decided to go to the cinema and watch Crazy Rich Asians.

Day 5:

We booked a full day tour with the hostel and we visited Kanchanaburi Province. Over there, we went to Erawan National Park and Waterfalls. We also went for Water Rafting and Elephant Ride. Our tour guide dropped us to Khao San Road where we went there for GUESS WHAT??? YESS!!! A MASSAGE!!!

 

Day 6: Farewell Bangkok

We packed our bags and headed to the airport and flew back to Abu Dhabi. We were really sad the trip was over.

Sometimes, a last minute trip is really worth it.

Monkey Forrest in Ubud

Tim and I stayed in Ubud and the first highlight of our trip was the Monkey Forrest which we highly recommend. It is a sanctuary for Balinese Monkeys. It’s in a village called Padangtegal. There are approx. 700 monkeys in the Forrest. It is one of the most visited places in Ubud and have about 100,000 visitors a month.

The Monkey Forrest is huge and has 3 temples inside. Good Luck finding it all. The villagers believe the Monkey Forrest to be a spiritual place. Honestly, the Forrest is breathtaking and the pictures are not enough proof of how wonderful the place is.

 

 

 

4 Days in Bali

In our 4 days in Bali, we stayed at an amazing resort called Sankara Resort which is located in Ubud. They serve amazing meals and offer free yoga classes early in the morning and the view is extremely breathtaking.

Day 1:

We arrived late afternoon because we had to wait for almost 2 hours for our luggage. We were picked up by the resort and since it got late, we decided to have dinner in the resort. They had a Traditional Night and served an amazing 5 course meal and we enjoyed a night of Balinese music and food.

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Day 2:

Our resort offered a reasonable private tour around Bali. We started our day with a delicious 3 course breakfast and headed out to explore Ubud. Our adventure started at the Monkey Forrest which we highly recommend. We then visited a small town and walked through the rice field. Funny thing you need to pay for every level of rice field you walk to. Tim and I just used the drone LOL. After taking pictures and meeting locals, we continued our journey to the Volcano called Galunggung. We were so unlucky, it started raining heavily so we took lots of pictures and drove straight to the Holy Spring. The Tirta Empul Tampak Siring, the Bali Holy Spring Water Temple. When we arrived there, the rain stopped but the weather became so humid and SUPER HOT. I don’t do well in heat and I’m a desert girl but I’m used to cool weather and air condition. So whenever it gets really hot, I need tsunami of nose bleed. It was over flowing and I was standing in the middle of the temple. I rushed to the toilet, people thought I got beaten up and I left the toilet looking like a murder scene and I’m not exaggerating. It was so embarrassing so I paid the lady and helped her clean the toilet.

After relaxing for a bit and getting cold iced water and ice cream for me to cool down, we visited the Rocky Temple and the Elephant Cave. I felt like Lara Croft when we got there, I never would have imagine historical places like that. You see it in movies like Indiana Jones or something. It was WOW!!! Left me speechless.

We stopped to try different types of Balinese coffees and had the Luwak Coffee. The famous and most expensive coffee that has poop. LOL

Summary of the Day Trip: Monkey Forrest, Rice Field, Volcano, Holy Spring, Rocky Temple and Elephant Cave.

At night, we walked around the town and of course went for a foot massage (fish massage) where those little tiny creatures just bite your feet to remove the dead skin. Although it was my second time to do it, I don’t find it pleasant at all because I’m ticklish. Of course, we also had a full body massage followed by dinner.

Day 3:

We got up early in the morning to have breakfast and head really early to the medicine man. Our hotel guide dropped us to the medicine man who was mentioned in Eat Pray, Love. Sadly, he passed away; however, his son took over his fathers duties and read my palm. I’ve blogged about it previously. Check it Out ‘Meeting the Medicine Man from Eat, Pray, Love’.

After our session, we rented a moped and drove around town. We went to local markets to do some shopping. At night, our tour guide took us to the Bali Zoo and we went for a Night Safari and had dinner there.

Summary: Medicine Man, Ubud Market and Bali Zoo

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Day 4:

We got up really early in the morning and had a quick breakfast and packed our swimming gear. We went for a swim under the Tegenungan Waterfall, Ubud. It was so slippery, everyone were helping each other not to slip.

As soon as we were done, the tour guide asked ‘so guys, where would you like to go?‘. I just shouted the WATER TEMPLE. The temple is called Ulun Danu Temple, it’s located in Bratan Lake. It took us 3 hours but we stopped to take a break but BIG BIG MISTAKE we stopped at the strawberry farm. If you guys don’t know, I’m allergic to strawberry so I started getting rashes so we had to move immediately.  As we got there, it started raining so we took lots of pictures and stopped at a restaurant called De Danau. The food was delicious.

We later visited the biggest rice field in Bali and headed to Tanah Lot Temple to watch the sunset. We ate dinner at the local market and tried a lot of street food. That’s how we. Bellion Travels spent our time in Bali.

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