After my 21st Bday, a relaxing weekend getaway was needed! My friends and I went to Bangkok, Thailand! At first we tried to change our flight to Phuket, Thailand instead, because Bangkok just got flooded, but our airlines didn’t travel there. So, we decided to just stick with Bangkok and make the best of it! Most of the flooding was around the river fronts and not in the touristy areas, but its still really bad. There are a lot of first story buildings just completely underwater and there were sandbags EVERYWHERE. It was kind of sad to see that. Also, you could see the indirect impacts of the flood; like grocery stores would be running out of food and water and 7-elevens would just be barren.
But besides all of this, Bangkok was really great and just the break I needed. Everything in Thailand is so so soooo cheap. Meals would be like 1-3USD. Our first night in the hotel we ordered milkshakes through room service!! It was only like 3 USD!!! ahaha Best thing ever!
Our hotel was incredible, and what was even better was that we got it for 50% off!!! Because of the flood in Bangkok, hotels have been cutting down prices to get more customers. The hotel was right in downtown and close to a lot of shopping malls, and flea markets.
The second day in Bangkok we went to the floating markets! This place is just another canal place where you take a boat around and there are lots of souvenir shops on boats! In this town we got to ride elephants!!! LOOK AT MEEE!!
Overall, I had a great time in Bangkok! It was very calming trip. I hope I can focus now and get some work done, because I got some big papers to finish..
This past weekend I went to Beijing for 5 days!! The BEST trip ever! I love Beijing! There is so much culture there and the people are so nice. We got to see so much of the city; too much for me to actually write about all of it here! aha
I think my favorite part of the trip was getting to go on the Great Wall! Never in a million years did I think I would get to go to China and stand on the Great Wall. It was a really special thing for me to do.
We also saw the Temple of Heaven, Tiananmen Square, the Imperial Palace, Olympic Stadiums, and Summer Palace (in this order)!
Please go look at my pictures from my trip! CLICK HERE!
Sorry I couldn’t write about all of my trip, I’m in a rush because I’m off to Bangkok, Thailand TONIGHT!!! AHHHHHHH!
And thank you for all the Birthday wishes! I had a wonderful day. Still can’t believe I’m 21 now.. geez where has the time gone??
Oh, I forgot to mention that the rest of my pictures from my travels are on my facebook page! They are open to the public, so anyone can see them without having a profile. Go check them out if you haven’t already!!!
This past weekend I went to Shanghai! I wish I could have stayed there longer, but unfortunately I have this little thing called school that seems to take over my life even in a different country… lol
The day of our flight I was a mad man, because I just finished up with midterms. I was not really prepared to get on a airplane and travel. Whenever I get overwhelmed like this, my judgement of time becomes waaaay off! ahaha I was freaking out because I thought we were going to miss our flight, but in reality we still had an extra hour to kill by the time we got to the airport! Some how we ended being super late for boarding the plane because we got distracted by burger king and boba!! ahaha
Once we got to Shanghai it was pretty late. We didn’t get into our hostel until 1am :/ Luckily, we found the hostel!! It was hidden in this alley way! aha but the hostel was SOOOO nice! The beds were way more comfortable than the ones at school and the place was very modern :) Definitely a good choice!
Our first day we went to a very famous buddhist temple in the city. It was definitely one of my most favorite temples I’ve gone to. It was huge too! But yeah, I feel like I always talk about buddhist temples, so just take a look the pictures :)
After the temple we wanted to go walk around the Yunan Gardens and Bazaar, but we had no idea how to get there. We asked some cops sitting around outside the temple and they told us to get in the car and DROVE US TO THE BUS STOP WE NEED TO GO TO! They were so nice!!! After a while on the bus we finally made our way to our destination. The Bazaar is like a big shopping center, but has all the old chinese architecture! Its awesome thing to see! The bazaar is basically and endless maze of these buildings with stores for food, clothes, and anything you can imagine!
At night we went to this place called the ‘Bund.’ Its across the river from the inner-city and it has a walkway to see the view and bunch of ‘European-like’ buildings! Definitely an interesting contrast. ahaha The Bund is a very high end touristy area, basically all the fancy hotels and designer shops are here. The view is gorgeous!
The next day we woke up early to make our way to a water village. It took us about 2 hours to get there from the city, but soooo worth it! This place is called Zhujiajiao and is known as the ‘venice of shanghai.’ As soon as we got there we paid go on a special boat ride (the one’s like in Venice Italy where the many rows the boat!). It was very relaxing and a great way to see the town first.
After the boat ride ended we just walked around the entire town souvenir shopping and eating.. One special thing they serve in Zhujijiao is sticky rice steamed in lotus leaf. Its a very common chinese food, but there was a lot of it here! Its so good!! OH! and we randomly ran into a music festival!!! We got to sit on the grass and listen to some chinese artist!…That day was so perfect..
^cute puppyyyy!! I miss my baby boyyyy :S
On our last day in Shanghai we wanted to get the famous Shanghai Dumplings for breakfast!! We headed back to the Bazaar where the famous restaurant is located and waited in a super long line just to try the dumplings! You should have seen the amount of people (foreigners and locals in line to eat here!). Luckily the line moved pretty fast and we got a table. The dumplings were amazing! Even better than the ones I get in San Gabriel! Inside was pork and juices. gahhhh I wish I could have some everyday of my life..
After eating, we went to the inner city where all the tall buildings were to take some more pictures and just walk around! It was such a nice day! I finally got my Fall weather after 2 years!!! Its the first time I think that I have seen trees that have leafs changing colors! ahaha If only LA had more than 2 seasons…. Anyways, we found this random convention center/hotel building and we snuck our way to the rooftop and had a wonderful view!! It was a lot of fun getting up there; i felt like james bond!
THAT WAS MY SHANGHAI TRIP!! This weekend… BEIJING!!!! then my 21st BIRTHDAY!! and thennnnnnn THAILAND AND TAIWAN!
I’m so happy XD
I forgot to mention that I am going to Shanghai this weekend! I’ll make sure to take TONS of pictures and blog all about it when I get back :)
This past weekend my friend’s parents (Auntie Jean and Uncle Paul) from back at home took me out to a wedding reception party in a super fancy yacht club!! This place is incredible! Never did I think I would be able to go to a place like this. The club is called Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club and it is literally right on the harbor (on the HK Island side). You can see all the beautiful lights of HK. When you stand by the pool, you just feel like you’re in an oasis in the middle of the city! It was pretty cool experience.
I didn’t really know what we were doing that night, but it was when Uncle Paul came to pick me and my friend up from school that I found out that it was a wedding party! I just thought it was a little get together in a bar or something. When we got there we started drinking and having a great time! I met a lot of nice people there!
Once dinner was finally served, I was so excited because I hadn’t eaten yet! and I think Auntie Jean was starving too because she basically ran to the buffet table! aha The food was soooo amazing (but I guess any food is amazing when its free aha)! One funny part of the night was when we were eating and I asked Auntie Jean if she went to the wedding earlier that day. I died laughing when she told me “Oh, I don’t know them. I’m just here for the food!”
After dinner, Uncle Paul took me and my friend, Jennifer, to a few bars in Kowloon to drink some more and listen to a few live bands. It was a great ending to a wonderful night :)
^ oh, and that guy right there in the yellow was a dancing machine. Waaaaay more entertaining than the actual band! ahahaha I should have taken a video. He was really into it.
Macau is known around here as the “Las Vegas of Asia” because it has tons of casinos and large hotels! It is a special administrative district just like HK, it’s only 12 square miles big and is only an hour ferry ride from HK! Another interesting fact about Macau is that it has a strong Portuguese influence. So, Macau has a lot of cathedrals, and Portuguese style architecture!
This past Sunday some friends and I decided to go visit this interesting place for the day to see what all the hustle and bustle was about. We woke up super early to get on the MTR and catch the ferry to Macau. But we ran into a few problems in the morning like forgetting passports and not being able to find the ferry. ahaha Also, I wore my new shoes for the first time that day in order to break them in, but they ended up killing my feet and giving me blisters.. :/ I think the way I had them tied hurt my feet, because I fixed them and now they don’t hurt anymore. THANK GOD!
Eventually we got ourselves together and managed to get on the ferry and make it to Macau! As soon as we got off the ferry we decided to be adventurous and just jump on a random bus and see where it took us (keep in mind that Macau is incredibly small!). We ended up in this really nice touristy area. Walking around we felt like we were in Europe! Macau has so many different vibes going (chinese culture mixed with european elements). What I thought was really funny was that everyone drove motorcycles or mopeds! They were everywhere!!
For lunch we stopped at this clay pot restaurant. You basically order a dish that is cooked in a clay pot and then they bring it out to you. I just order the rice and chicken pot, but my friend order this dish that looked amazing! It was raw beef and egg, but by the time you mix it all together the meat and egg gets cooked by the pot and hot rice.
Egg tarts are just one thing that Macau is famous for. They are so delicious! Very sweet and hot and flakey… mmmmm… I’m hungry now!
After lunch we headed to the tallest point in Macau. There is also a Portuguese style fort at the top of it as well! It was beautiful! check out the pictures:
For the rest of the day in Macau, we just explored, explored and explored some more! Here are some more photos of what we ran into on our journey:
By 8 o’clock rolled around we were starving! We walked around forever trying to find a good restaurant, but then we randomly found this off beat restaurant. It was a hot pot restaurant that was ALL YOU CAN EAT FOR ONLY 10 US DOLLARS! SCORE! Basically, a hot pot dinner when you have a boiling pot of water that is flavored on your table and then you are given raw meats, vegetables and other things to dump in the pot to cook! Kind of like Melting Pot!
We ate for well over an hour and then it was time to catch our ferry back home…
Last weekend was National Day for China! And what better else to do than to go to mainland China to celebrate?!?
Guangzhou is another mainland city very close to Hong Kong! Its just an hour past Shenzhen on a train. I went with some of my friends who have relatives in the area and they took very good care of us!
The first night we celebrated National Day with Jeanette’s family by going out to this delicious restaurant! There was soooooo much food and Jeanette’s Uncle kept making me eat! aha I thought I was going to explode, but it was so worth it! I even got to practice some of my Mandarin with them :)
Here is a picture of all of us with her whole family:
After dinner we walked around a beautiful part of Guangzhou with Jeanette’s cousins. I love all the Chinese architecture! Check it out
We started our second day in Guangzhou by heading up the city’s mountain peek by cable car! Thank god we got up early and did this, because by the time we got back down the mountain there were hundreds of people trying to get in the cable cars!! Guangzhou was packed because of the holiday.
Once we got done walking around the top of the mountain, it was time to go shopping!!! We all spent so much money on clothes! We had to though! It’s all so cheap! I definitely came home with like 15 extra lbs. of clothes :P
Delicious chinese pastries! (egg tarts, garlic bread, buns with red bean and Green leaf, and pudding buns)
Right before I had to catch my train back home, we stopped by one of the world’s tallest skyscrapers! It was so beautiful and it constantly changes colors! We were going to go to the top of the tower, but they ran out of tickets. Maybe next time!!
This is the Big Buddha!!
My school took all the exchange students on a little trip to go see the Big Buddha!! It took about an hour and a half to get there by bus. After the bus ride I got sick because I had taken an antibiotic on an empty stomach… oops… ahaha But once I threw up I was all good! ahaha
The school even set up a vegetarian lunch for us at the Buddhist temple. It was funny because they try to make all the food look like meat. It was all very delicious and lord knows I need to eat my vegetables…
After we ate, the buses took us to Tai O Village which is basically a really small fishing community. Very small andquaint. We just walked around and checked out the neighborhood.
For my friend’s 21st birthday we went to Karaoke!! Karaoke is so popular in Asia and it was my first going to an actual Karaoke place!! I had the best time! We got a huge room that held about 20 of us and ALL YOU CAN EAT BUFFET!! SO GOOD!! I stayed there until 2am, but some of my friends stayed there until 6am singing (crazy! aha)!
I need to start going to the Karaoke bars in Korean town in L.A.!
Me singing…. Enjoy :) aha
Alright! So about 2 or 3 weeks ago I went to Shenzhen for a day! Shenzhen is super close to Hong Kong. It’s right on the border and it takes about 15 minutes to get to immigration on the MTR from my school. Shenzhen is known for its shopping (aka fake name brand things!! purses, wallets, belts, you name it!) and that’s exactly why we went there!
Once we crossed the border into mainland China I was surprised how drastically different everything was! Even though Shenzhen is so close to home, it has completely different culture, people, and buildings. The more I go into mainland China, the more I can see how westernized Hong Kong really is. It kind of cool to experience both sides of the coin!
When we got through immigration, we all hopped on the MTR and headed to this area to start our shopping! But first we had to make a stop by McDonalds! ahaha Mcdonalds in China and Hong Kong have a waaaay better dessert menu and for some reason the fries are so much better than back at home. And one special thing they have on the menu is the Chicken McWings! They are delicious! Not to mention, everything in McDonalds is cheaper!!
After we ate our food, we officially started to shop and bargain! We did this all day long! But the only thing that I bought was this awesome watch!! I love this thing! It’s so heavy and big though. It ways my arm down so much.
Below is just one of the many malls we went to to shop and bargain! LOOK AT HOW CRAZY THIS IS!!!! So much stuff and so many people trying to sell things!
I will definitely be coming back to Shenzhen to buy some more stuff… I still need to buy my sisters and mom their fake LV purses.. ahaha :)
Lantern show at the festival! … Again, not my video, but I thought you might enjoy :)