Friday, May 30, 2014

Top 11 Street Food in Myeongdong, Korea

I heard so many comments that Korea is an expensive place to travel just like Japan or Singapore especially when it comes to the price of food... I beg to disagree because you can survive with not more than Php 1,000 per day for food allocation in Korea especially if 1) you have someone to share or divide the cost with and 2) you're game in eating street food.

Speaking of street food, here are my personal Top 11 fave street food in no particular order...

1) Jajangmyeon or Black Spaghetti- Is a popular noodle dish in Korea. It's made up of black bean paste, noodles, onion, pork, and potato. It is popular because it is a symbolic dish that single people (after Valentine's Day or White Day) eat with friends during Black Day. It's a celebration for all single people who did not get any flowers or chocolates during Valentine's day. Jajangmyeon is sweet and very filling. If you're a fan of Koreanobelas, then I am sure you know this dish very well. In Myeongdong, 1 small bowl of Jajangmyeon is KWN 3,000 or about Php 120.
2) Freshly squeezed lemonade or orange- While you try to taste as many street food as possible in Korea, make sure you have something to quench your thirst and clean your palate to get ready for round #2 or 3 of street food tasting. These limes are mixed with chilled Cider (equivalent to 7-UP or Sprite) and placed in a resealable plastic bag with straw. It costs KWN 3,000 or Php 120.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Basic Korean Accomodation, Hotel Gyerim

My Korea trip for 2014 came in a surprise. This trip was not really planned as we have other 2 trips toward quarter 4 of the year. The only reason why we went back to my so called "happy place" was because my boyfriend's cousin will get married...actually there are 3 weddings on their side one per month haha but due to budget constrains, I only attended the 2nd one.

Because everything was done in a breeze, we didn't get to book a cheap and nice guesthouse--which we normally do at least 1-2 months before. With just few days before the trip and more than 10 hotel prospects...only 1 was available for 9 nights and 10 days! Hoooray! and this hotel is called Hotel Gyerim in Myeongdong.

Looking at their amenities via (unfortunately do not have their own website), the hotel is pretty much basic. They don't have added values such as a pantry or free breakfast but that's okay because the location is very very close to the MRT station and it is across the famous shopping area, Myeongdong.
We were sold about the convenience of this hotel and I will tell you how breezy to go there.

How to get there?

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Taiwan Itinerary for 2 nights 3 days

Wednesday (Nov 20)
Thursday (Nov 21)
Friday (Nov 22)
Saturday (Nov 23)
6:00 AM

Yehliu Geopark

7:00 AM
Wake-up and prepare
8:00 AM
Wake-up and prepare
9:00 AM
National Palace Museum
10:00 AM
Taipei 101:
Observatory, Din Tai Fung/Mos Burger, Mall
11:00 AM
12:00 PM
Ikea Lunch
1:00 PM
Lunch: Tian Wai Tian
2:00 PM
Hello Kitty and Barbie Cafe
Miramar Shopping Mall
3:00 PM
Rest at Hotel
4:00 PM
Chiang Kai Siek Memorial
5:00 PM
Taipei Zoo: Maokong Gondola
Longshan Temple
6:00 PM
Shopping and Modern Toilet
7:00 PM
Travel to Airport
8:00 PM
9:00 PM
Shilin Night Market
Shrimping at Shilin
10:00 PM
Flight to Taiwan
Shilin Night Market
11:00 PM
12:00 AM
Back to Hotel
Flight to Manila
Taipei is a very small city and we felt that there very few things we can do in Taipei which is why we had a short trip (3 full days) arranged for our visit. We were right about the small part as we were able to complete our itinerary ahead of the schedule but what we were wrong about was that there were so many things you can do in 
Taipei that really made our trip exciting and memorable!

How we created our itinerary?

We listed down all the things we want to do in Taipei, places we wanted to visit, and food that we wanted to eat. Then we grouped them together based on proximity to each other so we’ll save time travelling back and forth. Based on our research, there were only 4 must do things in Taipei: Night Markets, Food, Taipei 101, and Palaces visits. We also added in themed restaurants as part of our must do since we wanted to capture the experience and share it in this blog.

Day 1 – the places we visited did not take long so we were able to complete it very quickly. Bulk of what we did was to eat since our objective was to try out all the themed restaurants on day one. So the itinerary looked very cramped but we took our time to go around Taipei 101, Ximending, and also Shilin Night Market.

Day 2 – since we already completed some of the day 2 itinerary in day 1 (themed restaurants), we looked for any other places we can visit outside of Taipei and good thing that we were able to search Yehliu Geopark which is outside of Taipei but just 1 hour and 20 minutes away. You may spend half day here if you decide to walk to the top of the mountain but we decided to skip that since we wanted to finish our other itinerary on time. For the Taipei Zoo, we arrived a bit late so the Zoo was already closed when we arrived at 5pm but we decided to for a Maokong Gondola ride on the top and enjoy their world famous Tea.

Day 3 – We went to these places just for the sake of visiting but we were not able to do anything here (National palace and in Miramar Shopping Mall). We decided to go to Longshan Temple last minute as well and enjoy again their night market.

Overall – you can visit Taipei in only 2 days and if you decide to skip visits to Themed restaurants, you’ll have more free time on hand. You can also skip Miramax Shopping Mall as it is an ordinary mall and IKEA as we only went there for their meatballs and Salmon. My advice is for you to spend more time on night markets since these are huge and also enjoy nature by going to Maokong and Yehliu Geopark.
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