Saturday, June 23, 2018

Yiassou! Welcome Lunch in Pigadia, Karpathos

Yiassou (Hello!) from Karapthos Island in Greece!

It has been a whirlwind of craziness at work so I am very glad that I am here now in the Greek Islands, unwinding.

It is hot here and we are on our second day in Karpathos. We are staying in the town capital and have rented an aparthotel for the next 2 weeks. We haven't done much so far except eating, sleeping, and lounging at the pool. I have started reading a new book though if that counts. Well, I did work early this morning, because like I earlier said, it's been a whirlwind of happenings at work so I have to catch up with so many things.

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Sunday, June 17, 2018

Lovely Lunch Place in Sarajevo: Dveri

I am one lady who always looks for nice and cute places to eat at!

The little entrance to Dveri. Isn't this place just lovely?

In Sarajevo Old Town, we found this lovely restaurant called Dveri. The place is quite small and uniquely cool. It's actually a bit hidden from the busyness of the pedestrian street, having only a very modest gateway and a corridor leading to the restaurant.

It has a narrow entryway and had it not been because of the signage outside, we would have missed this wonderful place! I am glad we paid attention.

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Saturday, June 16, 2018

Miljacka River Bank and the Sarajevo Assassination

The Miljacka River flows through the capital, dividing Sarajevo into 2 parts, the southern side and the northern side.

The Seher-Cehaja Bridge near Vijecnica.

Vijecnica and Kovaci neighbourhood.

The northern side part is the where Bascarsija, the historical old city center is located, as well as the neighbourhoods of Kovaci and Vratnik and many others. The latter is home to Sarajevo’s old city walls, stone gates, and fortress. A must visit if one is looking for panoramic views. Sarajevo is nestled in a basin and the houses on the hills have a great vantage point of the city. The southern side to the river is the suburb called Bistrik.

Miljacka river bank is joined by 11 bridges in Sarajevo and these bridges have their own distinct designs. The river is quite shallow so you can see the sand formation in certain parts. We strolled on here on a morning, just after we have visited Sarajevo’s City Hall aka Vijecnica. We were also in search of the famous Latin Bridge, the site of the Sarajevo Assassination. I think the river bank is a great place to walk on late in the afternoon just before twilight.

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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Photos of the Sarajevo City Hall and City Library aka Vijecnica

This is perhaps the piece of architecture and national monument that truly stands out in Sarajevo.

The beautiful building was built during the Austro-Hungarian empire circa 1891 by Czech architect, Karel Parik. It functioned as a city hall and after the World War II, it became the Bosnia National and University Library (Sarajevo's city library).

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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

The "Sebijl" and Vintage Trams in Sarajevo

Souvenir shot of the Sebijl.

The Sebijl (fountain) in Sarajevo.

Sarajevo is not for everyone, that I know for sure. It is exotic, different, and a bit on the rough edge. But I quite like the jive of the city. It is humble and unique.

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Monday, June 11, 2018

A Strange Encounter in Montenegro

Have you ever had strange encounters during your travels? Encounters that make you go, WTF? I mean, seriously.

Driving the coastal road of Montenegro in the direction of Kotor.

I mean those suspicious calling-for-trouble encounters where afterward you'd wonder what would have happened to you if you did not say no or did not pay attention at all?

Travelling does make us wiser, but there are cases when travelling have gone south (meaning have gone bad) for some people. No one really knows the future and what will happen next during our travels, that is why we always have to constantly watch our backs. Being friendly to strangers does have its perks, but skepticism and being mindful to the details still rules the day.

You can go a long way when you employ street smarts!

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Sunday, June 10, 2018

We Stayed at the Conte in Perast, Montenegro

Montenegro was one of the countries I have covered in the Balkan road trip last year. Goodness, the trip felt like ages ago already! Time fly so fast these days.

Conte Hotel & Restaurant in Perast, Montenegro.

So just a quick recap of the road trip. Bubbles and I started in Tuzla (Bosnia & Hercegovina), driving to Sarajevo, the capital of the country, after which we moved on south to Mostar and even managed to do a quick visit to Medjugorje. Then we crossed borders to Croatia in the Adriatic Coast and stayed in Dubrovnik where we hopped on a boat to the small island called Lokrum. Then it was time to cross borders again, and here we are in Perast, Montenegro.

After busy Dubrovnik in Croatia, Perast was a breath of fresh air.

The hotel has a lovely waterside terrace! Right on the Bay of Kotor.

Perast is a UNESCO world heritage town and we were very glad to have stayed in this very laid-back and serene sanctuary, which actually has a more village-like feel really. We love it.

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Friday, June 08, 2018

Surviving Sveti Stefan in Montenegro

Isn't this place stunning? Like it just stepped out of a fairy-tale book.

The magical Sveti Stefan isle in Montenegro.

If I were to sum up the whole story of this historical, magical and captivating Sveti Stefan (St. Stefan's Island) in Montenegro into one word, then it is -- SURVIVAL. The medieval island has managed to survive and exist through the years, and recently though, out of compromise.

It is called St. Stefan in dedication to the St. Stefan church in the small island, which I learned still offers mass every Sunday up to this day.

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Monday, June 04, 2018

Lost in Chinese Translation Meal in Shanghai

I have the inclination to order the wrong meal, every time, on the first day of my arrival in a new, usually non-English speaking (country) destination.

This restaurant offering Chongqing cuisine is located near the Shanghai Railway Station in Zhabei.

The last time it happened to me was last year when Dutchman and I were in Verdun, France. I ordered pig's feet because I didn't know what "Pied de Porc Roti au Four a Bois" means. Now, that's a mouthful of French!

You can read it here: Lost in French Menu Translation in Verdun: Who Wants Pig's Feet?

So it happened again, and this time in Shanghai, China. French was perhaps easier since the language is based on the Roman alphabet, but Chinese characters?

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Saturday, June 02, 2018

Shanghai Style: Meet "The Bund" and "Pudong Skyline"

If someone visiting Shanghai only has a few hours and want to quickly visit the city to experience it in a nutshell, then a stroll on the stunning Bund to view the Pudong Skyline is what I would strongly recommend.

The view of Pudong skyline from the Bund. Boat cruises ply the river back and forth during the day and especially at night when the skyline displays its colourful lights.

The Bund is an embanked quay on the western side of the Huangpu River running parallel to Zhongshan Road where many notable historical buildings stand. This area in the city is the former Shanghai International Settlement and is adjacent to the old walled city of Shanghai.

Before the Chinese civil war, the Bund was home to many financial institutions, trading houses, and consulates from western countries. When the Communist party took control of the country, the Bund was converted for government use and other purposes. However, the new China (1990's onwards) has slowly transformed the area to boost tourism. It has succeeded.

Across the Bund on the Huangpu River is the gorgeous Pudong Skyline or the Lujiazui skyscrapers.

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Friday, June 01, 2018

Shanghai’s 5-Kilometer “Nanjing Road” is World’s Longest Shopping Street

For the traveller or tourist who is keen to shop and engage in the modern Shanghainese shopping lifestyle experience, the answer is a visit to Nanjing Road. I suggest multiple visits since this shopping street is 5-kilometers long!

Shopping during travelling does not sit high up on my list. I do buy stuff but they are mostly a by-product of my travel activities. I do not travel to shop nor is it a travel activity. But I am always curious about shopping streets in large cities. I want to see what it looks like, what kind of stores they have, what products offer, perhaps there is a café on the corner street that I can sit and have a drink whilst I watch people go about with their shopping? Yup, that's more like it, my kind of game =)

Such as when I was in Copenhagen, I sat on this nice cafe restaurant on a corner of Stroget, which is the longest shopping street in Denmark and just watched people. I even managed to meet a local Dane where we had an interesting discussion about life.

Nevertheless, I was curious about the Shanghainese shopping lifestyle so I visited Nanjing Road.

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