Taiwan Diary

This is my second trip to Taiwan. Our family loved it so much when we visited 3 years ago, that we decided to come back.

What is not to love? The accommodations are fairly inexpensive, it Is safe, clean, and there are a lot of things to see and do.

The first time we visited, we stayed at one of the 4 Tango Inm Hotel near Shillin Night Market, known for its vibrant night life of shopping and dining. This time, because there are 14 of us, we stayed at the Midtown Richardson Hotel in the center of Ximending area, another shopping district of Taipei. (As you may have guessed, my family’s trips always revolve around eating and shopping. (And at the end of each trip, we always wonder how we gained so much weight LOL).

A few tips:

1) If you’re going to Taipei, stay near Shillin or Ximending. Theyre not exactly Ritz Carlton type areas, but they are the real Taipei- busy and bustling!
2) For luxury shopping- head on to the two Breeze Malls or Taipei 101 (a mall at one of the talllest buildings in the world).

3) Don’t rent a car- they have an amazing bus, metro rail, taxi and inexpensive uber system. Use Googie Maps and you can choose the best option that fits your budget. It is so easy to get around and everything seems to be 15-22 min away.

4) Taiwan isnt just about shopping- they also have great street food choices.

5) Taiwan also has Uber Eats in case you prefer to stay in.

6) Taiwainese people are so kind, polite, and helpful. They don’t speak English as well Filipinos, but you will manage.

7) Taiwan is a small country- but there are so many things to do here and it has so many cool attractions from massive malls to cool museums to trendy restaurants to historical temples.

8) Check the weather before you visit! They have 4 seasons in Taiwan- so pack your jackets if you’re visiting in the winter months! (And swimsuits in the summer months).

 

The most stunning sculpture in the world can be found at this airport!

The main attraction at Changi International Airport in Singapore is not its fancy duty free shops, state of the art lounges, or its fancy architecture – but its art sculpture.

“Kinetic Rain” was created by Berlin Firm ART+COM. It consists of two sets of 608 suspended raindrops made from lightweight aluminum covered in copper and is computationally controlled by complex programming and computers. Each raindrop weighs 180 grams (6.3 oz) and is suspended by a thin wire. These beautiful raindrops are raised and lowered in a 15-minute computationally designed choreography controlled from motors embedded in the ceiling. The raindrops morph into different shapes such as airplanes, kites or hot air balloons.

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This unique moving sculpture was installed in early July 2012 in the Departure-Check-in hall of Terminal 1 of Singapore Changi Airport.

According to Art+Com, the sculpture “aims to be a source of identity for its location, and provides a moment for passengers to contemplate and reflect.”

 

Get Your Groove On In Coron

Planning our trip to Coron, Palawan was kind of difficult and frustrating. I asked a few friends, Googled it and read blogs, and no one could really explain how to plan a trip to Coron.

Having visited the island, I can go on and on about the beauty of Coron, but instead, I’d like to dedicate this article on helping you plan your trip. Just follow these simple steps and you’re guaranteed to have an amazing time:

1) Book your plane ticket thru Philippine Airlines (www.PhilippineAirlines.com). There are two flights from Manila to Busuanga (Coron) daily. Flight takes 45 minutes and costs anywhere from $90 to $350 depending on how far in advance you book your flights.

2) Book your hotel at Asia Grand View (AsiaGrandView.com). It’s one of the best hotels on the island and it’s pretty reasonably priced from $100-$150 depending on the season. And for $7/person, their van can pick you up at the airport. Just give them a call to arrange for pick up.

3) Upon arrival, the front desk will ask you if you would like to book an island hopping/beach excursion. They have four options and you really can’t go wrong with any of them. They have an amazing team of people who picked us from the hotel, took us on a boat to the crystal clear lagoons, and cooked us our lunch on the boat while we snorkeled. Menu included grilled fish, grilled pork chop, pork steak, cucumber salad and drinks. Packages start at P1200/person ($30). You have an option to join a tour group or have a private boat.

4) Pack your bags.

Yes, it’s that simple! So book your flights today before the entire world discovers these islands.

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Chiang Mai’s BIGGEST Attraction May Surprise You

I ran into my Canadian friend Chantal at the Vancouver Airport and she was so excited about her recent adventure at an Elephant Farm in Chiang Mai. She took her entire family and they took care of elephants for a few days. She showed me photos of their family bathing the elephants in the river and I was so jealous. I didn’t know such place existed.

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I was so excited that I immediately called my 10 year old nephew about this elephant farm in Thailand where we will be camping for 4 days to take care of the elephants. I explained to him that “we would wake up early to take the elephants for a walk, then bathe them in the river, and feed them before taking them for their daily exercises.” I was so excited and I knew he would be as well.

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