Found Out the Hard Way – Taxi Scam, Tipping & More! ||Lisbon, Barcelona

IMG_8831It’s been awhile since I posted due to school. Oh the bundles of joy of exam month…… But I think this will be useful to some of you as this would have been extremely nice to know for myself!

If you have been following me recently, you probably already know by now that I recently went a week trip to Lisbon and Barcelona. If you haven’t, don’t fret! You can read them about it here: FoodAdventuresMarket

As I have probably mentioned before, this was my first time in Europe hence it was a very foreign place to me. After being a first timer in Europe, we learned some important things and I hope these would be of help to you first timers as well 🙂 Continue reading

A Foodie’s Heaven ||Barcelona

IMG_9200Is there a market number one in your heart? That no matter how many times you go to it, it still excites you and makes you tingly inside! According to National Geographic and other various sources (clearly did my in depth research here), the St. Lawrence Market in Toronto is listed as the best market in the world. I have been raised in Toronto for all my life and a part of me is proud that we have achieved such a title. But after experiencing this incredible place, the other side of me asks, why? I have to admit, St. Lawrence Market offers a wide range of products and is a pretty awesome place to visit in Toronto but holding the number one title is a bit too much in my book (still love you though St. Lawrence market♥).

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The Alluring Coastline ||Lisbon

I recently went on a trip to Lisbon, Portugal with my sister and two other friends during reading week. For all of us, this was our first time in Europe and we were ecstatic to step into this untouched world. Unfortunately, our first impression on Europe was not so great as we arrived on a Sunday morning and to our surprise, nothing was opened…. So on the first day, we took it easy and wandered the streets, getting lost in the city. I definitely suggest bringing a good pair of shoes as there is going to be a lot of walking and the evil of all evils, uphills. AIRBNB – Alfama Charming Apartments (Tiles)IMG_8843 This little neato place was located in the Alfama District, which is known to be the oldest district in Lisbon. I definitely would recommend staying here as everything was conveniently accessible and the host provided us with great hospitality.

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Thinking of Bringing That?

what-to-bring1I love going on trips (but then again, who doesn’t!) however packing is not my thing. I always question “but what if it’s too hot or cold? What if it rains?” Plus, having asian parents does not help with the packing process. I don’t know if it’s an Asian thing but my parents love to over pack and usually the rule of thumb for them is, if you think you need and you’ll have to pay for it there, bring it. (Mind you my parents brought a rice cooker for a 3 night stay at Quebec city.) Sometimes I regret not listening to my mom but most of the times I blame her for the extra 5 shirts I brought along and did not wear.

1. Make a list. If you’re a last minute packer like I am, I find creating a list is very useful. It’s always the little things that I will forget until I step out of the door. I suggest writing down what you want to bring as you think of it, that way when the time comes to pack, you can just shove everything into your suitcase. It is also a great way to double check if you have everything with you on the return back home.

2. Reuse. Recycle.  The majority of my luggage when traveling, consists of clothing and as I mentioned before when you have an asian parent, your suitcase tends to be 5x unnecessarily larger. I tend to bring as little clothing as possible so I usually pre-plan outfits that recycle the same item of clothing. Also if you know you’re going to shop for clothes then pack even less cause you can just wear your new brand items while you’re there. Or if there is a washing machine in hand, you can wash your clothes there and recycle some clothing as well.
However, I do suggest bringing extra tops if you’re going to humid and hot areas except for beach vacations as you can wear swim gear basically everywhere you go. No judgement at all.

3. Roll it, don’t fold it. I didn’t realize How much of an effect this technique had on clothing. The best part of it is that a) takes up less space hence you can fit more things and b) makes your clothes less wrinkled!
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Sun and Endless Beaches ||Punta Cana

Punta Cana #2Resort Life. Something I have never experienced and was definitely looking forward to. Imagining myself laying on the beach with the sun on my face, the best thing you can do – nothing and just relax. Well…so I thought.

When we first arrived, the storm of humidity and heat hit us right in the face. Off we went to find the bus that was going to bring us to our resort. (Note: Most all-inclusive packages will have a transportation service from the airport to the resort. But remember to double-check!) Honestly, this was like finding a needle in a haystack. It was a sea of buses; different shapes and sizes parked that belonged to different companies. Most of these had a number on them but they were NOT parked in any type of order. You can imagine…two hungry and groggy ass people trying to find a bus number in the heat and humidity; I, myself was about to punch someone.
Luckily, we found our bus after a 10-15 minutes hunt. We waited for other passengers to hop on and off we went.

In most cases, these buses will carry travellers staying in different resorts which were relatively located close to each other. Unfortunately, we were the last of the stop of the journey.

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