Saturday 11 January 2020

Tips on traveling in Busan

First, I need to apologize to my blog followers for not even posting a single post in Year 2019! In fact, it's a wonderful year for us as we traveled to Europe and South Korea. I have kept up to date of our travels in my Facebook Page. Do take a visit if you are interested. 

To kickoff Year 2020, I am sharing tips that I learnt during my November 2019 trip to Busan, South Korea. I shared and updated them "on the go" in my Facebook Page on the consideration that I might forget to update later :-P. 

What to prepare, what to buy, what to avoid, what to eat......all are included. If you have more tips on traveling in Busan, please do let me know. I will include them if I find them useful :-)

Gamcheon Culture Village

1. Buy a T-money 💵 card or Cashbee 🐝 card for your public transport. You will get discount.
2. Tap when you get down the bus 🚌 if you are getting a transfer to another bus or metro 🚇 within 30 mins. The transfer will be free.
3. The English standard is still not very high. Chinese language seems to work better here if you can’t speak Korean 🇰🇷.
4. At Gamcheon Culture village, buy a 2000 won map 🗺 from the tourist counter. I strongly recommend the 2 hrs route if you got time.
5. Haggle if you are buying seafood 🦞 🐠 in the Jagalchi market. There are many stalls there and they want your business.
6. Not all restaurants got English menu. Prepare to use your mobile📱 to show pictures for your order.
7. The zebra 🦓 crossings are like non-existence here. Be bold when you use them as the drivers will not stop for you.
8. The public buses 🚌 have only Korean and English (electronic sign at front of bus) announcements of stops. The metro 🚇 has Korean, English and Chinese announcements (only for key stations)
9. Google map 🗺 can’t be used here. I used Nava Map app. Will be helpful if you prepare the Korean address in advance as the app does not recognise some English locations.
10. Be sure to eat seafood 🦞 when you are here. Using King Crab 🦀 as a comparison, you can get almost half the price compare the one you get in Japan 🇯🇵
11. A little spicy 🌶 can still mean very spicy to some people 🥵
12. You need to take bus 🚌 to Taejongdae and Oryukdo Skywalk. Not to worry if you will miss the stop 🛑. Both locations are at the end of the bus route. The bus driver will chase you down if you don’t 😂!
13. Most of the subway 🚇 has only escalator going up. If you have big luggage 🧳 and need to go down to take the trains🚆,look out for the elevators.
14. Not all shops 🏬 offer tax fund return if you buy over 30K won 🇰🇷. Make sure you check before purchasing.
15. Coffee culture is very strong here. You can almost find another coffee ☕️ cafe or outlet within the next 20 steps you take. Apparently, take out is cheaper than eat in for some for the outlets .
16. The Busan people stand to the right side of the escalators.

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Monday 19 November 2018

Trip to Hokkaido, Japan

It has always been in our bucket list to visit all the regions of Japan. We have ticked off Toyko, Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, Kobe and Nagoya. Hokkaido would be the next in our list. The trip nearly did not happened due to the September 2018 earthquake but we were glad that we took the decision to still fly to the northern region of Japan in October. It was autumn in Hokkaido. The rest was history.

Lake Toya
Otaru Canal

Hokkaido is Japan's largest prefecture and it is impossible to visit every part during our 2 weeks stay. Being this was our first trip there, I planned my trip on the more popular destination at the southern part of Hokkaido. I call it the "Southern Circuit". We would touch down at New Chitose Airport and took a Airport Bus Limousine to our hotel in Sapporo. Sapporo was our base where we would make side trip to Otaru, (a small romantic city famed for it's music boxes and glass wares)  and Asahikawa for it's famous Asashiyama Zoo.

Google Map Capturing Our Travel Route
The Sapporo TV Tower

After nearly a week stay in Sapporo, we traveled by JR train (our main transport beside buses and trams) to Lake Toya. Lake Toya is famous for it's onsen and amazing lake view. We simply loved our 2 days stay there. Historic city-Hakodate was next. Apart from it's super fresh seafood, this city has many historic architecture and of course it's global famous night view from Mount Hakodate.

Mount Hakodate Night View

After Hakodate, we would then proceed to Noboribetsu, another area famous for it's onsen. A major attraction here is Jigokudani, also known as "Hell Valley". Sulphuric steams raising from the streams and cracks of the valley gave this place it's notorious reputation. Beware of the many demons that "prowl"and protect this sacred place.Another highlight at Noboribetsu was also the Penguin Parade at the Nixe Marine Park.

Hell Valley Noboribetsu
Penguin Parade at Nixe Marine Park

We would travel back to Sapporo for a couple more days before leaving for Singapore from the New Chitose airport. Overall, Hokkaido is a thumb up for our family. More of our Hokkaido trips in our coming blog :-)

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Sunday 18 February 2018

Hong Kong Travel Video 2017

We visited Hong Kong (again) in November last year. It is almost my second home now as we would almost at least visit it once a year to visit my in laws. Many would think I have become a Hong Kong expert given my multiple trips there but I seriously do not think so. There are still so many new things to explore and learn every time we go there and I do not think I will ever get tired of this fabulous country.

For our last visit, I have specially made an video to record the places we have visited. I always think that nothing beats the visual effect of a travel video. It was purposely recorded as a third party view (Charlotte as the lead, Alison and I in cameo appearance 😀) and I hope it brings viewers to an effect like a  real time perspective experience as if as they were travelling with us at the same time.

The travel video will bring you to the all time tourists favorite like the Wong Tai Sing Temple, Hong Kong Ocean Park, Victoria Harbour etc as well as less visited area such as the UNESCO Geo Park, Sai Kung, The Cats Tea Room etc.

Sit back and relax to watch the video. Let me know if you have any question on the places we have visited. I will gladly answer on any enquiry. Give us a Like and Share the video if you love it 😊