San Juan… a small beach town located on the western coast of Luzon, just north of San Fernando City. Very popular surf area… small, quiet and the perfect getaway from Baguio City.
The paradise island of Boracay. What more else can I really say?
I spent some days on this extremely beautiful island and hardly took a single picture (the ones below make up of about half the total), a photographer needs his vacation too damnit!
Once, I will have to write a nice in-depth essay delving into all the characteristics between all the famous paradise islands in south east Asia, having been to several over the past few years (Bali, Samui, etc) it certainly would be an interesting conversation to have.
But yeah, our flight out of Shanghai left just after midnight, putting us down in Manila in the wee hours of the morning, only to board a small prop-plane an hour later to Kalibo. A small “ferry” (seen in the photos) then took us to the island and by 9am I was on the beach with a Red Horse in my hand. One could say I was indeed quite sufficiently ready for the end of the world (the Mayan prophecy of December 21, 2012). Had the skies come tumbling down, I really could not think of a better place to be.
I don’t have much more to say about Boracay, friendly people, cheap prices, live music in every direction, and the fresh seafood market with restaurants located all around it that instantly cook your purchases any way you desire was a tremendous delight. Certainly my kilo of king tiger prawns BBQ’d with garlic and butter was only just short of utterly mesmerizing. Just go to your favorite travel site and buy a ticket, simple as that. Boracay. Do it. Do it now. You won’t be sorry.
This was my second visit to Qibao (my first visit back in July 2010). Located right off metro line 9, the ancient water town of Qibao is a great (and easy) visit from downtown Shanghai.
Besides the iconic views, the next most appealing thing to me are the 2元 (0.25€) and 10元 (1.24€) shops, where everything inside is that price. Second would easily have to be the food stalls, carrying everything from freshly-made banana bread and steamed dumplings to fried crickets and other things I couldn’t quite recognize.
The Oriental Pearl Tower is undoubtedly Shanghai’s most iconic landmark. Completed in 1994, it was also one of the first structures to be built on the Pudong side of Shanghai (ie- all the famous skyline images you see).
It has a love/hate relationship with most Shanghainese, and I certainly don’t know why exactly that certain color was picked, but at night it is spectacular. At 468m tall, it is currently the 5th largest tower in the world, with which you get some insane views of Lujiazui (downtown Pudong) and across the river of the Bund and the Puxi side of Shanghai…
I can’t recommend visiting the Pearl Tower enough, if for one simple reason: the view straight down through the glass floors at almost 300m up!
There is also an unusual exhibition located on the ground floor, as seen in the last few images… make sure to look through them all, there are some real gems in there!
Since this was my second visit to Holland Village, I don’t think I captured as many [interesting] pictures. Nothing much has changed from this strange area since my first visit almost two years ago. It’s a long metro ride to the far reaches of northern Pudong to Gao Qiao then walking the final stretch to Holland Village (see my previous posts for more info: Gao Qiao | Holland Village).
And yes, I still think they should change the name to Shangsterdam and open a frituur.
Yes, monkeys are awesome.
I had a real connection to the baby seen in the last several photos, what a buddy.
The island of Bali has much more to offer than just beaches… some beautiful forest/jungle type deals, not to mention some incredible insects.
This was my fifth or sixth trip to the island of Bali. Not sure what else to say about it other than that it’s dope.
Oh yeah, and the sunsets are amazing.
^Just a few more taken over the following days.