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El Nido

Getting there:

We arrived straight from Manila via Air Swift -a boutique commercial airlines which only flies Manila to El Nido. Our plane landed at Apulit Island where a private jeepney took us to a small receiving area. We helped ourselves with a few drinks and some snacks.

Check out Air Swift here.

Most of my trips involve a lot of walking and going to places. Given my limited travel time, I always make sure to fill up my itinerary with places to visit and food to eat. This time it was a bit different. Our day was filled with activities yet all were fun and relaxing at the same time.

We are here to chill, eat and enjoy.

They welcomed us with some singing and dancing. A lay was hung on our necks as we were served their signature welcoming drinks.

Tempting Taiwan – PINGXI SKY LANTERN FESTIVAL

Tempting Taiwan – PINGXI SKY LANTERN FESTIVAL

 

As Chinese New Year Festival (also known as Spring Festival) comes to a close, another celebration is called for. The Lantern Festival marks the end of the Chinese New Year. It is symbolized by different colored lanterns released in the air. Thousands of people all over Taiwan and around the world gather together as they celebrate this breathtaking event.

In Pingxi, flying sky lanterns have been practiced for more than 2000 years ago during the Xing Dynasty. Back in the day, outlaws used to raid the town of Pingxi, which caused the people in this town to hide in the mountains. The town’s lookouts use these sky lanterns to signal to the townspeople that it is safe to go back to their homes.

Today, people light up sky lanterns with a different purpose. They believe that writing their wishes on the lanterns would send them straight up to heaven. People from all over the world have come here and lanterns are being sent up the sky every single day.

I am so excited to witness and be part of this celebration.

NORTH OF TAIWAN
DAY 3, PART 4 – YEHLIU, JIUFEN, PINGXI

Joseph dropped us off to the bus station and told us that we were to take a bus to Pingxi. The bus ride cost NT30 ($0.93)each. We were lucky to get there on time for the next bus. Excitment was building up as more people entered the bus.

The ride took another 20 minutes after we got dropped off at the stop. Vehicles are no longer allowed to enter from this point on. All of us walked downhill towards Jingtong train station. It was about to get dark and people were already flying their own lanterns as we looked up the sky.

Those little black dots are lanterns floating in the sky.

This is how crowded the place was once we got to the old street of Jingtong train station. People from all over the world all come here to witness the lantern festival.

Wishes on a bamboo.

Shops selling mini lanterns. They also light up!

This street is lined with lantern shops. Everyone is eager to assist you in setting up your lantern and lighting it up.

Different colors represent different meanings for each lantern. We chose the color red for luck.

All prices are in Taiwan Dollars
If you wish to get all eight colors in one lantern, that’s NT300 ($9.28 USD)
NT200 ($6.18 USD) for a four-colored lantern
NT150 ($4.64 USD) for a single-color lantern

Painting our lantern making sure we write down all our wishes and dreams to send to the heavens.

 

A quick video of the Jingtong Old Street.

Big thanks to this guy who took our photos while we were setting up our lantern. He’s the one wearing a vest with the camera on it. Don’t really know if he does this out of fun or what but it’s best to give him something to say thanks.

I just love being in this area. Walking along the street, eating, looking at people and reading their hopes, wishes and dreams. More photos below.

  • Love and peace
    Love and Peace

A quick video of the releasing of lanterns.

Magical moment.

Tempting Taiwan – PINGXI SKY LANTERN FESTIVAL

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TEMPTING TAIWAN – JIUFEN OLD STREET

NORTH OF TAIWAN DAY 3 - YEHLIU, JIUFEN, PINGXI After an hour's ride from Yehliu, we arrived at an old decommissioned mining town called Jiufen (Chiufen). Before the gold rush, this place was said to be very hard to reach with only a handful of people living in it....

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TEMPTING TAIWAN – YEHLIU GEOPARK

NORTH OF TAIWAN DAY 3 YEHLIU, JIUFEN, PINGXI Today is the last day of my trip. I had to go home a day earlier than Kait and Cham because dad had plans somewhere so I had to stay at the office. We decided to spend whole day driving around the north of Taiwan. Luckily...

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TEMPTING TAIWAN – XIMENDING

TAIPEI, TAIWAN DAY 2 BEITOU HOT SPRINGS, XIMENDING In an hour, we are scheduled to meet up with a long time friend, our grade school classmate, Diorella. We passed by shops after shops of clothes, food, beauty products and souvenier items as we walked towards...

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TEMPTING TAIWAN – BEITOU HOT SPRINGS

February weather in Taiwan is so nice and cool and perfect for long walks. TAIPEI, TAIWAN DAY 2 BEITOU HOT SPRINGS, XIMENDING On my last trip to Taipei, I got lost in Yang Ming Shan National Park which ate up my time to go to the town of Beitou. I definitely won’t let...

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TOP 10 FOOD FINDS IN SHILIN NIGHT MARKET

Shilin Night Market is the biggest and most famous night market in Taipei. There are actually a lot of night markets in Taipei, but if it's your first time, make sure to visit Shilin Night Market. Don't let the huge crowds bother you, it's part of the experience....

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TEMPTING TAIWAN – TAIPEI 101, DIN TAI FUNG

First day in Taipei – Xiao long bao, you tiao and soy milk in the morning. Breakfast has never been more satisfying! Lunch at Din Tai Fung, the most popular restaurant in Taiwan. We went to see the world famous Taipei 101 tower.

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TEMPTING TAIWAN

Second time in Taiwan, but even more excited this time around. We arrived late night, checked in at a cute hotel in Ximending.

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BF Homes – Kantori Yakitori

Kantori Yakitori is a Filipino version of the Japanese yakitori. The name came from a combination of the words kanto and yakitori, which suggests corner yakitori bar. Best to go here drinking sake or beer with the barkada (friends).

An assortment of meats and veggies on a stick. While they do offer yakitori samplers, I prefer to order them separately so that I can choose which ones I like.
 

Furikake Fries – labelled as a must try so I ordered it. Coated fries with strips of nori.

Cost: P98.00 ($2.08)

Bonjiri(left) or bluntly put, chicken butt on a stick and Shiro(right) chicken intestines cleaned, sliced and placed neatly on a stick.

Cost: Bonjiri- P48.00 ($1.02) Shiro- P48.00 ($1.02)

Sushi Fire Ball – one of their best sellers, it has kimchi rice and cheese inside. Dip it in Japanese Kewpie Sauce.

Cost: P58.00 ($1.23)

Gyu – wagyu on a stick

Cost: P99.00 ($2.10) per stick
 

The place is cozy and great for small groups of people. There’s a mural inside which added to the Japanese feel of the place. I especially liked the Shiro (chicken intestines) because it’s so much different from the usual isaw that you’d find in the streets. Other than that, everything’s just OK. Would I come back? If it was a hangout with the group, then yes.

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Look from inside the restaurant.

Check out the place here at Google maps. It’s location is at the old Milly’s place.

51 Aguirre Avenue, BF Homes, Paranaque City
(02) 358 9709
Open: Sunday to Thursday: 5pm to 12mn
Friday to Saturday: 5pm to 2am

BF Homes – LITTLE QUIAPO

Little Quiapo – Possibly my favorite Filipino restaurant in BF Homes.

On my first food trip to BF Homes, I didn’t do research on which restaurant to go to. I just wanted to drive around and see which place would call my attention. This restaurant is located near the entrance of Aguirre St. and for some reason it just caught my attention. I drove around until almost the end of the road just finding myself back at the start of Aguirre and dining in this restaurant. It didn’t disappoint.

Pancit Palabok – One my all time favorite Filipino dishes. Just look at how much toppings they put on this one! Obviously a best-seller. Almost every table on the restaurant ordered this.

Cost: P93.00 ($1.97)

Tokwa’t Baboy – Fried tofu with not just any pork… it’s lechon! Tokwa’t lechon!
 

Cost: P199.99 ($4.22)

The restaurant also accepts big orders and bilao (big plates) take outs. Pasalubong (food souveniers) is also available at their counter.

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Look from inside the restaurant.

BF Homes – SOUTHERN DAIRY

Southern Dairy serves homemade gelato, milkshakes, cakes and desserts.

I was a bit disappointed with the peanut butter and banana milkshake. Even if it really looks good, the taste was bland. I feel like half of the jar is just cream.

Cost: P170.00 ($3.61)

Love the french toast! Two slices of toast with marshmallows and hazelnut spread in between, topped with vanilla ice cream.

Cost: P185.00 ($3.92)

If you’re looking for something to eat, Southern Dairy has a few meals to keep you filled.
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Look from inside the restaurant.

View from outside the restaurant.