Snorkeling in Red Sea for the first time

Before I blog about my travel in Vatican, City, I want to share a vlog about my first time snorkeling in Red sea. If you happen to have a youtube account, please subscribe on my channel. It will mean so much to me if you do. 


Posted in Blog | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Day In Venice (Italy day 2)

I don’t know what’s happening in my laptop right now but I can’t update my blog on it. I’m blogging by my phone. It is hard but whatever. Let’s continue on with my Italian vacation. On our day 2, we decided to visit Venice. We traveled to Venice to Milan via high speed train. I experienced first class train ride for the first time and it got food in it. Before we move on, I just want to mention show how beautiful Milan Central train station is…..

Milano Centrale Station


After 2 hours and 10 minutes by train, we arrived in Venice. By the time I stepped out of the station, I immediately saw the water, gondolas, boats and gorgueous buildings. I fell in love with the place. It was everything I imagined. I can’t believe that I’m in Venice. The water highway was crazy! There’s taxi boat and a public ferry ride that works like a metro but in water!


First thing we wanted to do is to ride a gondola. I know it is a tourist trap but I don’t care. It cost 80 euros. Funny thing was, while we are waiting for our gondola, a teacher from New Zealand told us that 6 people can share one gondola ride. We were 3 and she wanted to share with us so it would be cheaper for all of us. While we were chatting with the teacher, a couple from Peru asked us about gondola ride. The teacher explained everything to them and decided to share a ride also with us. That’s 80 Euros divided by 6. What a great discount! When the gondola arrived, the Gondolier asked us if we know each other because it is not allowed to share. The teacher told him that we were all here for a teacher’s conference. The Gondolier told us “I wasn’t born yesterday”. In the end, he still let us rode the gondola. It was so nice meeting people from different countries and I love listening to their stories.


Right after the Gondola ride, we went to St Mark’s square. We wanted to eat but there’s lot of sites to visit and we have limited time so we just bought food that we can eat while walking. We decided to visit Doge’s Palace because it was number 1 on museum to visit in Venice according to tripadvisor. I’m lazy to put the info of the palace because I’m on my phone but hands down this is my favorite museum of all time. The interiors were breath taking. The ceiling was full of artistic masterpiece.


last window that the prisoner will see in Doge’s palace


Sad thing was, we have a museum pass but we weren’t able to use it because we ran out of time. We just spent our precious time in Venice relaxing in St. Mark’s square. 


I adore Venice and it was the favorite place I have ever visited (I always say this one everytime I travel). Here is my vlog about Venice:

Posted in Blog, Travel, Vlog | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boracay, Philippines Adventures

 

Before I continue on with my blog in Italy, I just want to share to all of you our recent family vacation in Boracay, Philippines. I will just post the video because I don’t have anything much to say about it. I can’t forget this trip because it’s the first time I experienced paragliding and hair braids.


 

Posted in Blog, Travel, Vlog | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Exploring Milan (Italy day 1)

I wanted to start my Europe travel blog in Italy! We just finished our short stay in Lugano, Switzerland and we were on our way to Milan.  I saw this “Piazzale Anne Frank” through my bus window.  I love the story of Anne Frank and I google searched about the place but I wasn’t able to find any information in english. All I know is “Piazzale” means a large square.

IMG_4075

My photo is blurred 😦

Moving on, we arrived in Milan around 2 in the afternoon. The bus dropped us in Milan’s Malpensa airport and we went to our hotel by train through the airport’s train station.We checked in, rested for a few minutes and after that, we explored the city. In Lugano, Switzerland, the small peaceful lakeside town is very clean but in Milan, you will really feel that you are in a very big urban city because there are lots of people, graffiti and everything you will expect in a city.

We wanted to visit the “Duomo di Milano” (Milan Cathedral) first. I’m was a little nervous because I felt like we will get lost but thank God we didn’t. Our hotel was near in Lima station and we are only 5 stations apart to Duomo di Milano. It was only 7 minutes train ride and to be honest I wasn’t feeling Milan that much. We arrived in Duomo station and when I rode the escalator, going up, I saw the Cathedral square for the first time and it was marvellous. My perception of the city changed! It was like a kingdom in my favourite T.V. show “Game of Thrones” and the opening instrumental of that show was playing in my head while I’m walking in the square. The square is packed with people. On my right, I saw the posh shopping arcade called Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II and on my left, the first stop of our tour, Duomo di Milano.

IMG_4740.jpg

Duomo Di Milano

DCIM101GOPROGOPR2496.

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

Duomo Di Milano or Milan Cathedral took almost six centuries to build. The line was a little long and we were hungry. We decided except of sitting in a restaurant for lunch, we just bought a panini (Grilled sandwich and it was so delicious) and ate it while we were waiting in line for the entrance in the cathedral and museum. Inside of the cathedral was nice and the museum beside was ok. What I really loved was that you can climb the top of the Duomo either by stairs or elevator (separate ticket). If I’m travelling alone, I will definitely choose the stairs option for adventure but I’m with my sister and niece so we rode and elevator. I love the view from the top of the cathedral and you can see Milan’s classical cityscape.

IMG_4742.jpg

Inside Duomo di Milano

DCIM101GOPROGOPR2533.

View from the top of Duomo

After visiting the Duomo and the museum beside it, we went to Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II to find a restaurant for dinner. I was excited to eat dinner because it would be my first time eating pizza and pasta in Italy. We walked and walked in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II until we reached Piazza della Scala where we saw Leonardo Da Vinci’s monument and Teatro Alla Scala Opera House. We finally decided to eat dinner in a restaurant located in Piazza della Scala (I forgot the name).I ordered pasta of course and risotto for my sister. All I cay is that the food in Italy is so delicious and it is now my favourite country (out of 8-9 I visited) in terms of food.

IMG_4694.jpg

My first pasta in Italy

IMG_4757.JPG

Leonardo Da Vinci’s Monument

After dinner, we wanted to watch anything in the opera house just for the sake of experience but there were no available tickets. We just spent the evening chilling, window shopping (I can only afford a handkerchief in Prada LOL!) and picture taking before we return in our hotel. It was a great day and my energy level was so high that I’m not even tired yet when we returned to our room.

Here is the video of our Milan tour:

 

Posted in Blog, Food, Travel, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

I’m back!

The sole purpose why I open this blog is to practice my english skills in preparation for my IELTS exam. Now, I’m back because I will take another english test, for the United Kingdom Visas and Immigration. Moving to another country legally is a very long process. Anyway, I will continue the last part of my trip to Turkey and will move on to my other travels in Switzerland, Italy, Vatican City, Dubai and Philippines. I promise to blog as regular as I can. I will try to remember what happened during my travels, the best I can. Also, it’s nice that I’m logging my memories through blogging because years from now, I can easily reminisce what happened in the past by reading my blog.

I got plenty of time during my last day because my flight back to Manila will be around 8-9 in the evening. While enjoying the breakfast buffet, I looked at my map again and decided where to go. I wanted to visit Taksim square but I love exploring old places with history rather than shopping (I don’t have money to shop also ;))  so I decided to go to Dolmabahce Palace.

IMG_2584.jpg

IMG_2585.jpg

The Palace was built between 1843-1856. The sultan at that time moved to this palace because he felt like his previous residence, the humongous Topkapi palace is not luxurious enough compared to other palaces of european monarchs. Inside the palace there’s a tour guide and you need to cover your shoes with the plastic they provided.

What’s good thing about travelling is that you will meet lots of new people from all over the world. A  tall Australian guy, blonde hair, law student from Perth  approached me. He was like “Uhm, English? You speak English”. He introduced himself and we did the tour together and I got a free photographer! The palace is so grand and you can still see the old books, paintings, furnitures and huge chandeliers inside (top 3-5 biggest chandeliers in the world). The interiors, especially the ceiling was beautiful.  Unfortunately, taking photos was not allowed.

After the tour finished, I said goodbye the Australian guy. I  returned to my hotel to check out and spent my precious remaining hours in Istanbul by staying in Sultanahmet Square. I just stayed in the park, read a novel (9 months later and 10 pounds heavier, I still not finished reading it), observed the locals and waited there until it’s my time to go to the airport.

IMG_3261.jpg

I made it to the airport two hours before my flight. I still have an ample time to eat, browse my photos (Ya’ know I’m only travelling for photos /shade) and chill in the airport lounge.

IMG_2594.jpg

To sum it all up,  this is the video of my memorable Istanbul, Turkey tour:

Posted in Blog, Travel | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Solo Travel: Istanbul, Turkey (Part 3) I got lost!

I’m so behind the schedule! I want to blog about my recent trip in Boracay, Philippines but still, I haven’t finished my journey in Turkey.

Day 3 of my first ever solo travel in Istanbul started with me playing with my breakfast cheese. One of the good thing about solo travel and not having an itenirary is that you have a freedom to choose what do you want to do for the day, without the time pressure.

Playing with my cheese

Playing with my cheese

Thank heavens, the weather was so nice compared to my 2nd day were I spend the entire time inside museums. After I finished playing with my cheese, I read my map and decided to start my tour in Galata tower. I took the tram and it was super cheap! For 10 only Turkish liras you have 3 rides already.

IMG_3206

After the tram, I walked and I used a map as my guide. It was written on the map that the tower was near to me but after minutes of walking, I still didn’t see any tower. I started to feel nervous when I noticed I’m walking alone in a narrow empty street. My vivid imagination started to takeover and I pictured scenes from the gory film Hostel. Thank God, someone helped me to locate the tower. IMG_3215

In latin, Galata tower is called Christea Turris which means tower of Christ. It was built in 1348 by Genoese colony. There’s cafe at the top of the tower. The view from the top was breathtaking. I was astonished seeing Istanbul from the top. If I have to choose between the 145th floor of Burj Khalifa in Dubai to the 9th floor of Galata tower, I pick Galata tower any day.

Galata Tower

I spent like an hour sight seeing in Galata tower. After that, I went immediately to Bosphorus cruise port. Seri Hatlari is the official cruise for Turkey and I recommend it than the private tours. You have two options, the short trip (lasted for 3 hours) or the full day cruise (6-7 hours). I went on with the full day cruise and besides it was cheap. 25 Turkish liras but due to me having my very reliable museum card, I only paid 20.

IMG_3247 IMG_3209

While in the ship, I felt so relaxed and I listened to random songs on my phone and it was a very nice experience for me. I felt so grateful and a little emotional because I can not believe I’m travelling in the black sea. The ship dropped us in a place where the Yoros castle was located. It was a Byzantine empire ruined castle. I did not expect that we will climb a mountain just to reach it. It was tiring but the view was so worth it.

DCIM100GOPROGOPR1162.

While waiting for the ship, I ate my lunch sea side and there were many restaurant offering me their menu and I was like “I will choose whoever got a wifi access!” Haha!

IMG_2552

I ended day 3 with a heavy dinner and a white wine. It’s so fast and I’m in denial that it will be my last day tomorrow.

IMG_2557

Part 1

Part 2

Posted in Travel | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Solo Travel: Istanbul, Turkey (Part 2)

IstanbulWhat a rainy day in Istanbul. I started my second day in Istanbul eating lots and lots of cheese. I am so in love with Turkish foods. I am so full that I decided no to take tram and just walk to my destination (Bosporus cruise). I am so frustrated because the streets were beautiful and I want to capture it with my camera but my photos turned out to be so messed up. I guess I really need to practice more and more in photography.

Cheese

After walking for like 40 minutes, I finally reached the Bosporus cruise starting point. I was about to buy a ticket but I saw the sky was so dark that it felt like it will rain already. I decided not to continue and went to Galata tower instead. On my way to the tower, I saw a photoshoot for fashion campaign. It’s like America’s Next Top Model because when the rain poured down, they still continue with the shooting and the photographer do not even mind if his models were soaking wet. So fun to watch.

Turkey's Next Top Model

Because of the rain, I eventually bought an umbrella and did not pursue going to Galata tower. Thank God for my museum card, I got places to visit that doesn’t involve outdoors and me getting wet. First, I visited museum of Islamic arts. On my way there, I saw a crazy mad sheep on the street wandering around and bumping random people.

Crazy ShipThe museum is full of old Qu’ran and nice old carpets. I am working in Saudi Arabia and I think that Saudis will appreciate the museum. I waited for the rain to stop in the museum. I was so tired from walking and my feet was aching because of my shoes. I returned to my hotel room to change shoes and I ate meat kebab with rice and salad.

FullSizeRender 3The rice was delicious. I’m recharged again so I went to the next museum called Istanbul Archeological Museum. While walking, I saw another pit stop again (LOL!). I got curious because no one was going there and I tried if my museum pass will work. The place is called Hagia Irene and my museum pass worked. It was like a scene from Tomb Raider. It was creepy because I’m alone inside and it was an old dark church.

DCIM100GOPROGOPR1058.

After Hagia Irene, I eventually visited the Istanbul Archeological Museum. This was by far the most amazing museum I have visited. It was great that the museum have Egyptian mummy, head of Alexander the Great and all other artifacts from the ancient world.

Alexander The Great

After my amazing time in Archeological museum, I ended my museum day in Topkapi palace. It was the home of Ottoman sultans for 400 years. The palace is divided into four courtyards and I saw very expensive things like a baby crib with rubies on it. The highlight of the museum was, I got a chance to see the staff of Moses and sword of David.

Topkapi Palace

After my so called museum day, I eventually rested in Starbucks and ordered pumpkin spice latte. I am so tired that I’m not even hungry for dinner. Tomorrow, I hope it will be sunny so that I can go to Bosphorus cruise.

For part 1: http://angelopangan.com/2015/10/11/solo-travel-istanbul-turkey-edition-part-1/

Posted in Travel | Tagged , | Leave a comment