Friday, June 17, 2016

South Korea: Seoul: Itinerary, Chasing the Snow

Sharing our itinerary last 2014 as our fifth visit in South Korea, fourth inbound in Incheon.  More of about chasing the snow (since it’s a bit late visit on Feb/March). Although, we did not plan to visit a ski resort. And experiencing k-drama sites until 2014.

K-pop Residence II in Myeongdong

Food Review

Arrival in Incheon.  Rushing at Seoul Station to catch the last transfer for Myeongdong Station

Breakfast at Droptop (not the actual branch for You Came from the Stars, When a Man Falls in Love)
Yakhyeon Church for Love Letter and Prime Minister (of Yoona)
Culture Station Seoul (Former Seoul Station) for Reply series
Mango Six (same branch for The Heirs)
Everland for snow buster/winter ledge

De Chocolate Café (not the actual branch for Winter that Wind Blows of Zo in Sung)
Jade Garden (still for Winter that Wind Blows and Love Rain)
Petite France (for You Came from the Stars, it was a day after the episode that was taken in the site)

Stroll until Myeongdong

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

South Korea: Itinerary for Jeju & Seoul v2

Although there are Jeju Air flights, there is still no straight flight from Manila to Jeju (2014-2016).  
Sharing the following path mostly dedicated to k-dramas until before Nov 2011.

Yeha Guesthouse, Jeju
Green Residence, Myeongdong, Seoul

-Sleep-over at Incheon Airport or Sauna/Spa at Ground Floor

-Take AREX to Gimpo, to take Jeju Air to Jeju at 6:55
-Move to Yeha at touch down 8am, need to join the tour before 8:50am bus @ Yeha 
-West Tour: 

-Join East Tour (c/o Yeha)

-Joongang Cathedral
-Flight back to Seoul, check-in at Seoul Green Hotel
-Go to Four Seasons House for Endless Love (Spring Waltz, 2006; Summer Scent, 2003; Winter Sonata, 2002; Autumn in My Heart, 2000), Love Rain on 2012
-Coffee Break at Coffee Prince Restaurant for Coffee Prince

-BCJ Garden, Paju for 49 days (Pure Love) and City Hunter, Boys Over Flowers on 2009
-Gwanghwamun Square for City Hunter

-Buckon Village for Personal Taste (Perfect Match)

Travel Date: Nov 13-18, 2011

South Korea: Seoul: Itinerary for First-time Visitors


ZaZa Backpackers Hostel
Address: 32-3, Namsandong 2-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul/South Korea (Myeongdong Exit 2)


Sharing the itinerary we planned last 2011 during our first visit to Seoul.


Going to Gyeongbokgung Palace 경복궁

Start of the On-Our-Own walking tour in downtown Seoul

  • Admiral Yi Sun-shin Fountain
  • Haechi Madang
  • Waterways of History
  • Central Square - A site for relaxation and exhibition
  • Statue of King Sejong
  • Flower Carpet

Taking shuttle bus to Nami Island


(Optional to have an overnight stay, to experience the island with less crowd)
OR visit Petit France or Jade Garden


Take the ferry from Nami Island to mainland (back to Seoul)

Take a cab to Gapyeong Station (take several transfers until Myeongdong)

  • Departure at: Gapyeong Station (Line: Gyeongchun; Direction: Mangu/Sanbong)
  • Transfer at: Mangu Station (take the Jung ang Line; Direction: Jungang/Yongsan)
  • Transfer at: Inchon (take Line 4: BLUE: Direction: to Seoul Station)

Going to Namsan Tower (Teddy Bear Museum, 2011)

Thursday: (choice of theme park)

Lotte World (Line 2: GREEN: Lotte World, Museum, Exit 4)
OR Everland 


Going to Changdeokgung Palace (Anguk Station, Seoul Subway Line 3, proceed out of Exit #3)
Optional: Gahoe-dong Catholic Church, Bukchon Hanok Village, Insadong

Going to Dongdaemun (Doota Mall)


Go to Samseong Station: for Kring Museum (not recommended if you are not Drama addict) and COEX
Going to Banpo Bridge for Moonlight Rainbow Fountain (not recommended during heavy rains on June-Aug)


Cathedral of Saints Mary and Nicholas (Myeongdong)
Free Day

(Optional to stay near Incheon airport if the flight is too early in the morning) 
Global Guest House
Address: 801 IBC Daewoo Theoville, 2850 Unseo-dong, Jung-gu,

Monday, June 13, 2016

2016 June: Philippines: Antipolo: Pinto Art Museum

This place was visited by Ces and Daphne weeks ago and decided to might as well visit the place.

Too bad that when we have visited the place, they had a power outage, no lights on the paintings and fans were not working.  Refrain from visiting during the mid-day since there were only few shaded area. Bring a cap or a hat if you want to stay cool headed.

"Pinto", as it's name, is a gateway to arts and culture of us Filipinos!  Although the building architecture looks like Greece (or what we known as #Urk from Descendants of the Sun), these stores a lot of great works and paintings of local artists.  

Sunday, June 5, 2016

2016 May: Japan: Fukuoka: Itinerary & Tips

Travel Date: May 15 – 19, 2016

Hotel Ascent Fukuoka ホテルアセント福岡
3-3-14 Tenjin Chuo-ku, Chuo, Fukuoka, Japan 810-0001
中央区天神3-3-14, 中央区, 福岡, 日本 810-0001
Phone:+81 92-711-1300
Hotel Review

Arrival:Hotel Ascent Fukuoka ホテルアセント福岡
Ippudo TAO – Tenjin (博多一風堂)

Cathedral of Our Lady of Victory 聖母の勝利司教座聖堂
Heavy Rains and most of the Musuems are closed - Mina Mall and the 3 other shopping complex, Tenjin Undergroud Shopping street
After the rain: Fukuoka Tower (福岡タワー, Fukuoka Tawā)

It would have been either:
Karatsu Castle 唐津城
Fukuoka Castle/Maizuru Park (福岡城跡, Fukuokajōato)
Nokonoshima Island

Yutoku Inari Shrine (祐徳稲荷神社)
Huis Ten Bosch (ハウステンボス Hausu Ten Bosu)

Nanzo-in Temple (南蔵院)
Uminonakamichi Seaside Park (海の中道海浜公園)
Kawabata Shotengai博多川端商店街
ACROS vertical garden

Kyushu National Museum (九州国立博物館)
Dazaifu Tenmagu Shrine

2016 May: Japan: Fukuoka: Nanzoin Temple

Nanzo-in Temple (南蔵院) is a Shingon sect Buddhist temple in Sasaguri, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan. It notable for its bronze statue of a reclining Buddha. - [Reference]

Thursday, June 2, 2016

2016 May: Japan: Fukuoka: Kyushu National Museum

Kyushu National Museum
4 Chome-7-2 Ishizaka, Dazaifu, Fukuoka Prefecture 818-0118, Japan
Open: 9:30 - 17:00; Closed: Mondays

2016 May: Japan: Kyushu: Fukuoka: Dazaifu Shinto Shrine

Dazaifu Tenman-gū (太宰府天満宮) Shinto Shrine
4-7-1 Saifu, Dazaifu-city, Fukuoka, 818-0195, Japan
Open: 6:00 to 19:00, 6:00 to 20:00 (June to August), 6:30 to 19:00 (winter)
Fees: Free

Dazaifu station is just 2 subway lines away from Hakata, around 40 mins subway travel.  Upon exit, you'll find directions on the floor, maps, and street guides.

Enjoy the old Japanese street (this is closed to vehicles) with lots of restaurant to select from.  Don't miss to take a photo on the uniquely designed Starbucks cafe.  Buy out ceramics and other souvenir on this street. 

Monday, May 23, 2016

2016 May: Japan: Fukuoka: Uminonakamichi

If you are looking for an easier route to bed of flowers than Nokonoshima Island, choose Uminonakamichi which is accessible by subway.  But if you are  not a plant or flower lover, you can skip this since this has less seating and shaded area.  To hot to visit in the  middle of a summer day.   

Sunday, May 22, 2016

2016 May: Japan: Kyushu: Fukuoka Tower

Fukuoka Tower (福岡タワー Fukuoka Tawā)
The 234m high tower is covered with 8000 half mirrors and is the tallest seaside tower in Japan. [Reference]

2016 May: Japan: Saga: Yutoku Inari Shrine

Yutoku Inari Shrine (祐徳稲荷神社)
849-1321 Saga-ken, Kashima-shi, Furueda, 1855

A shrine located in Kashima City, Saga Prefecture.

Dedicated to Inari, the wild fox kami, it is the third largest of its kind in Japan. It was constructed in 1688 as the family shrine of the Nabeshima clan who ruled what would become the Saga area (called Hizen at that time) during the Edo period. [Reference]

Getting there : 
  • From Hakata Station, go to JR Hizen-Kashima Station (肥前鹿島駅 Hizenkashima-eki).  This station has very nice restroom area as well.  
  • Exit and cross the road for the Kashima Bus Center, (don’t worry, there are signs upon exit). 
  • You'll be welcomed by an old man trying to give you RT tickets for 320 jpy each, take this as IC cards are not accepted by this bus line.  There is also Information Center, if you have doubts.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

2016 May: Japan: Flavors of Kyushu - Itadakimasu! Kumpai!

Tasting the Fukuoka and Kyushu cuisine!

Ippudo Tao
Food: chashu (simmered/braised pork) ramen with tamago and vegetables
Value: Average (1128 jpy)
Location: Yubinbango810-0001 Fukuoka Tenjin, Chuo-ku, 1-13-13 (5 mins walk from Tenjin station)
Personal Preference: 9 out of 10

2016 May: Japan: Hotel Ascent Fukuoka

Hotel Ascent Fukuoka
3-3-14 Tenjin Chuo-ku, Chuo, Fukuoka, Japan 810-0001
中央区天神3-3-14, 中央区, 福岡, 日本 810-0001
Phone:+81 92-711-1300
Dates Stayed: May 15 - 19, 2016

Price: Got the room with 45% discount on insider deal and had another discount applied by using my points.  Thanks to Agoda for this deal.

Panic Button On: I was not able to find the Exit# from Google Maps, so I assumed my way out and got lost.  Until I saw Daimyo Church, thanks God! It was actually in my itinerary to visit the place, but not at this early to be coming straight from the airport!  From there I already my way to my accommodation.
Location: Hotel is in Tenjin, at the further end of the Underground Shopping district.  Accessible by same subway line from the Airport Station.

Upon arrival and departure on the city (if with luggage), take the elevator on Exit 5, B2 going 1F (courtesy of Parco).  On a daily scene, I prefer Exit 4, as this is the closer gate (but without Underground Shopping) to the hotel. Turn right on the next street.  Cross the Showa Dori, it will be behind Media Popeye. 

2016 May: Japan: Fukuoka International Airport

Fukuoka International Terminal is not directly connected to the Subway.

2016 May: NAIA Terminal 3

Upgrades in NAIA:  

Now there is a map beside the flight status in Terminal 3.

Also, traditional patterns were painted in boring white walls of the arrival area.  Hopefully they improve this to picturesque views of Philippine nature, places, and festivals.