Outdoor movies! Cultural Festivals! Foods from around the world!
Annnnnnd all of these things are usually FREE and are walking distance from each other! No car required! ❤
There have been many wonderful fun-filled days this summer – but the most memorable was an unexpected Saturday afternoon that turned into a full day-o-fun!!!
It began with a play – an interactive dark comedy – THE WEDDING – put on by an independant theatre company: The Lighthouse Troupe. As audience members aka the wedding guests, we were encouraged to dress nicely, sign-in at a guest registry, find their table, and interact with the various members of the wedding party, much like a real reception. You know me – any reason to get dressed up is my kind of event! 🙂
After the show… we walked into Harbourfront for their Spicy Food Festival and found a free jazz concert which naturally led to impromptu lindyhopping on grass!
After that we walked along Queens Quay to Sugar Beach for Sail-in Cinema’s screening of The Princess Bride …
❤ My most favourite movie ❤
Since we arrived kinda late … we found a patch of sand for our blankets way in the back sadly, making the Sail-in screen teeny-tiny.
Plus, it seems we were too late for the courtesy popcorn and back-rests that many around us seemed to have nabbed.
THEN….the event announcer asked for a family-of-4 who would/could potentially win a fabulous prize for answering a single movie trivia question.
When they failed…we managed to flag him down and I provided the CORRECT answer… which won us seats on a sail boat to watch the movie!!!
And there were handsome sailors too! #bonus 😛
THIS was our view for the movie … just waiting for the sun to set so that the movie could start!!!
Floating around on Canada’s fastest sail boat, eating popcorn with sailors and watching the greatest movie ever …
A perfect ending to a wonderfully unexpected summer day!
Curious about what I’m wearing?
How I Got The Look:
Dress and crop-top from Forever21+; Shoes from Winners
How would you describe THE Perfect Summer Day? What would it include? What would you do? What would you wear?
Tell me about it in the comments section below. 🙂
Special thanks to Ellie for capturing those dancing pictures! And to Five for the pictures on the boat!
Canadians know how to make sure they squeeze out as much summer as they possibly can – cuz Winter is Coming and will last 8+ months of the year! 😦
That’s why we gotta make the most of the August Long Weekend!!!!
This was the first time I stayed in town. The streets of Toronto are filled with loads of party people and tons of Americans who come up for Caraibanna ! The weekend is dedicated to TONS of parties happening everywhere and the weather is usually picture perfect!
I was lucky enough to have some RMT benefit dollars to burn – so I grabbed a gf and we drove to Caldeon, ON to spend the day luxuriating at a day spa!
The Millcroft Inn & Spa had an outdoor terrace, indoor and outdoor pools, an indoor whirlpool, an Infrared Sauna, private men’s and women’s locker facilities with herbal steams rooms and showers.
It was the greatest!!!
Plus, they’ve got an award winning resturant – where we had lunch overlooking this gorgeous pond + waterfall. ❤
This was the 2nd summer in my life where I have come to peace with my body insecurities and donned a bikini (aka fatkini)! 🙂
This was an intensive week of non-stop dance with workshops all day, everyday to improve your dancing skills. Taught by amazing dance instructors from all over. Followed by nightly live bands to dance to until the wee hours of the morning!
Here’s a quick run down of those live musical acts:
Truth: When I signed up for this trip, I figured I’d have a ton of other Toronto dancers going with me. But with the CAD$ being so low…that wasn’t the case. And then I had a lower back injury that led to me doing very little dancing all winter. I started to chicken-out and was worried I wouldn’t be able to keep up with everyone else at this camp.
What if they were all amazing dancers and they discover that I’m a dancing fraud!?
What if they’re all super young and I’ll be the oldest granny of the group?!
What if I sit all alone for every meal with no friends all week!? The Fear Was Real!
As the travel date got closer and closer… turns out that there were only two other Toronto dancers heading to Beantown …and we were all arriving at different times.
So I forced myself to be brave, packed my electric heating pad, a sh!t-ton of Ibuprofen and muscle pain ointment and off I went to spend over a week at a dance camp, in a city where I know nobody… dun dun dunnnn!
I had to audition to get into an appropriate “track level” for all your classes that week. Terrifying? Yes!
Result: Turns out I’m an intermediate dancer!
This was the first time I participated in a group routine and performed in public!!!
I’m happy to report – we didn’t mess up once on stage!!! Woot! Woot! 😀
Here’s the routine. We were nervous that we’d screw it up…so we claimed a spot in the back row…far right, if you’re looking for me.
Look for my especially twirly skirt. 😉 Click here to read about my outfit if you’re curious.
I was way too busy having the time of my life … that I didn’t take too many pictures during my stay at camp.
Luckily I’ve managed to find a few of me taken at the fun photobooth the last night of camp – celebrating its 20th anniversary!
Visit my Instagram channel to see all the camp adventures + video clips of a few lessons and a mini private concert with Norma Miller – Lindy Hop swing dancer known as the “Queen of Swing”
Camp ended on a Thursday…and with the long weekend here (Canada Day), I decided to stick around Boston and explore the city solo.
My hostel – HI Boston – was right next to the Boston Common – pretty much right in the heart of downtown.
I slept the day away – my body was exhausted after 7-days of dance. But in the evening, I walked around on my own and found myself in the Public Gardens just as the sun was setting…
And at the other side of this the park… I stumbled upon this landmark…
“Where Everybody Knows Your Name!!”
Naturally I had to stop in and have a cuppa Calm Chowda at the bar and channel my inner Norm. 😉
Friday I was a proper tourist! I was determined to maximize the day AND night!!!
What better way to explore a new city than on foot! I discovered a fab lil’ company called Free Tours by Foot which does just that! These tours are among the best things to do in Boston, taking you through many of the city’s most famous neighbourhoods. Best part: there is no charge to take our tours. Meaning you may pay what you feel the tour was worth after the tour is completed, thus ensuring that your tour guide must strive to give his or her best on every tour. Win. Win.
What I saw on the Freedom Trail Walking Tour:
Massachusetts State House
Park Street Church
Granary Burying Ground
Old South Meeting House
Old Corner Bookstore
Old State House
Boston Massacre Site
In addition to all these historic sites … I managed to drive by the Harvard Campus at night …. took the T-train on a pub crawl to some uptown Boston Bars…. checked out the local Lindyhop Social…. brought the house down with newly made friends while Karaoke’ing in Cambridge … caught some live jazz over brunch…and even had a bit of a romantic interlude that weekend to boot! 😉
Overall, my trip to Boston was da.bomb.com! ❤
It’s a fantastic city – super green – with lots to see and do. Sadly, I dedicated an entire day to shopping and came up empty-handed. Nothing wow’d me enough to spend my money. Nothing. Very, very disappointing. 😦
Who’s been to Boston? Were there some “must do’s” that I missed? Now that you’ve read about my adventures, would you take a trip out there too?
Tell me your thoughts in the comment section below.
I did a 6-hr road trip with some dance friends to Montreal for the weekend! First trip of the year! 🙂
Next to Toronto, Montreal is the 2nd largest Canadian city and said to have a ton of tourist attractions, museums, cultural centres and historic landmarks.
Montreal is known for its mountain – Mount Royal. Lots of people often pack a lunch and head up to the catch the views for the top of it. You can get to the lookout by bus, car or simply by walking up Peel St.
That’s one of my favourite things about visiting here – it is a total pedestrian city!!!
This was the 2nd time I’ve visited this city as an adult. The 1st was this past Halloween for a fun Lindyhop Exchange.
Since I was only there for a weekend – this time a blues dancing event – there really wasn’t time to explore any of the ‘typical tourist attractions’.
Although, I did manage to check out a few cool things this city had to offer. Here’s a recap of what I did …when I remembered to take pictures
A Walk up Saint-Denis St. & Saint-Laurent Blvd.
I explored the city on foot easily, specifically the area in and around Saint-Denis St. & Saint-Laurent Blvd (not too far from Parc Jean Mance).
If you’re looking to see Montreal at its hippest and most happening, these are the streets for you!
Plus, there were tons of restaurants, boutiques, and vintage shops to tryout and poke around.
Maybe came home with a few treats for moi… 😉
It was a fabulous weather day ☀️ to have been exploring Montreal on foot. After the shopping and a brief stop for Ripples Ice Cream🍦… a friend and I found ourselves on a sunny patio and prepared to play a Fun Drinking Game I’ve invented called: Man Buns & Beards 🍻😎 #ppmeowTravels.
It seemed that this city is populated by hundreds of well dressed beautiful people, which meant the rules to my drinking game needed some modifications 😉 …
The Underground City
Did you know that there are more than 30+ km of underground shopping in Montreal!? 😮
Yep! It’s essential for blustery, frost-biting cold, wintery days this city gets. Which means shoppers can walk around the city during Winter without ever going outside.
There’s really no “entrance” to this underground shopping world. You kind of just happen upon it. You can pretty much find an entrance to the Underground City anywhere in downtown. Just about every building in downtown has a door that leads you to this place. There are information kiosks scattered throughout, so you can easily pick up a map and start navigating.
I believe I entered from the corner of St. Catherine and McGill (McGill stop on the metro)…after exploring the campus grounds a bit.
There are LOTS of different shops and food courts. And few nice department stores, like SIMONS (one Toronto doesn’t have). Eaton Centre Montreal is very similar to Eaton Centre Toronto.. same stores.. same sales…
What I notice was that aside from AdditionElle and Pennington’s, the plus-sized boutiques and offerings were scarce. With extremely limited options within the many corridors of the Underground City.
Because of this fact, I was very well-behaved… only spending a little $$ on some sale items to help with Project: Apartment Refresh… stay tuned to the blog for that 😉 A set of fleece doggie pillowcases marked down to $4.99, from Simons.
And this terrific watermelon shower curtain marked down to $9.99 (also from Simons). Found some watermelon-esk green hand towels too (Winners $3.99). Now just need some sort of watermelon floor mat for my bathroom theme to be complete! 😉
Last, but certainly not least, my Montreal trip concluded with….
The Barbie Expo
Whilst exploring the Underground City… we stumped upon the most wonderful exhibition which featured more than 1,000 Barbies in designer clothes!! ❤ ❤ ❤The largest permanent, haute couture Barbie exposition in the world has taken roots in Les Cours Mont-Royal in Montreal!
There was even a special I Love Lucy feature for the show’s 65th anniversary, with Barbies dressed up in Lucy’s costumes from the most memorable episodes ❤
This Barbie Expo had high-fashion Barbies, designer Barbies, and even celebrity Barbies!!!
Some dolls were wearing designs from Armani, Dior, Versace, Givenchy, Oscar de la Renta and many more notable names from the fashion industry. ❤
Needless to say I kinda lost my mind, and iPhone camera space 🙂 Are you following me on INSTAGRAM?
If so, you’ve likely seen a few more pics and video clips as I took them during my trip.
Search for the hashtag: PPMeowTravelsto see more of my adventures there. Thanks for following and reading
Oooooo! This summer has been filled with mini travel adventures.
There was an excellent seat sale on Porter.ca … So I decided to spend a little over a week in Ottawa, Canada’s capital city over…
Canada Day Long Weekend!!
Here’s a recap of what I didANDwhat I wore …when I remembered to take pictures 🙂
Things To Do In Ottawa!
This may have been my first visit to this Big-Little City as an adult. And I have to say it is beautiful in the summer!!!
The first half of the week I stayed with friends right in The Byward Market. Within an area of roughly four blocks, you’ll find museums, cafés, specialty food shops, boutiques, galleries, restaurants, pubs, salons and more! Often there are musical buskers performing and so many patios to sample! I did my fair share of sampling a few afternoon pints and bites throughout my week there.
Hosted by Swing Dynamite, SNS features two lessons (an introductory lesson and a specialty lesson) and social dancing till 1:00 am. Doors open at 8:15 pm, lessons start at 8:30. Social dancing starts at 9:15 pm. For more info please visit http://www.saturdaynightswing.com/
Did you know that there are many FREE passes to various Ottawa sites and museums that can be checked out at the local library?
Want the experience of flight but prefer to keep your feet on the ground? Here is your chance to sit at the controls of an aircraft without taking off! Friendly, knowledgeable Museum staff will assist you in boarding one of three cockpits:
the Tutor (CT-114)
Don’t ask me which one is which. I have no clue. I just wanted to sit in as many cool planes as they’d let me!
We chose to explore the Museum’s amazing collection at our own pace and moved from aircraft and exhibitions as throughly as we wanted. Which meant we had plenty of time for cheesy tourist photo ops like the below shot 😉
You really do need an entire day there.
So maybe the below plane was in a roped off section … but I managed to sweet talk one of the volunteers to let us into the area 😉
I really, really, really wanted to sit in this wee plane.
Learn how an ejection seat can save a pilot’s life. Listen as the Museum’s enthusiastic guides describe the ups and downs of ejecting from a fighter jet.
Then, sit in an authentic ejection seat and learn how pilots use this essential piece of equipment. Like I did below 🙂It was pretty cool discovering Canada’s contributions to aviation from the days of early aviation to the jet age and on into space exploration.
I highly recommend visiting this museum if you get a chance!
No “Irene vacation” is complete without a day-o-SHOPPING!!! 😉
With the Canadian Dollar doing so poorly these days, I’ve been avoiding my cross-boarder shopping trips.
But I was pleasantly surprised to discover that Ottawa has an outlet mall: Tanger Outlet
Now…the shops selection was decent, but there weren’t too many “deal-deals”, if you know what I mean.
But I did find a few gems that followed me home:
Oh man! As a proud Canadian…I was super excited to be spending Canada Day in my Nation’s Capital!!!! The crowds and crowds of people dressed in all kinds of patriotic get-ups ALL DAY LONG. The concerts on Parliment Hill. The close up fireworks! It really is something to see and be apart of ❤ ❤ ❤
Naturally, that meant there was outfit planning to be done…and here’s what I put together for my Canada Day look:
Now….it should be noted that the below look lasted exactly 22-mins 😦
As soon as we got out of the car, picked up our Starbucks and began heading for Parliament Hill —- it began to POUR!!! Raining cats and dogs, and squirrels and raccoons and the like. It was madness.
We did our best to get ourselves back and hid under a giant patio umbrella, until my gf’s hubs could turn the car around and pick us up again. #wettshirtcontest
Did you know that on Canada Day, entry to museums are free? Thank goodness for that…cuz we needed somewhere to spend the day drying off so we could be ready for the evening fireworks!
There was a special exhibition called:Gladiators and the Colosseum – Death and Glory.
What would you have seen at the gladiatorial games, nearly 2,000 years ago? Maybe you would have seen an emperor, a helmet, or a crocodile?
You can see it all in this special exhibition, complete with a guidebook to help you find all the stops along the way and collect the stamps to discover what you would have seen at these ancient games.
Here we go. The last instalment of PPMeow’s Asian Adventure. (Sorry it’s taken me so long to post)
The last of the three cities I visited was Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
I left Toronto, Canada with weather of -11 degrees Friday, February 27th…. to arrive in KL to +38 degrees on Sunday evening, March 1st! 😮
It was so hot ALL-THE-TIME there!
KL is the capital and most populous city in Malaysia. And was the ‘home-base’ for my 3-week trip to South-East Asia, as my friend Dee lives there.
With the weather being oh-so hot, it was difficult to get motivated enough to leave air-conditioned quarters to venture out into the crowded city for exploring.
Also, it was in this city that I totally got hooked on Game of Thrones – and managed to binge-watch all 4-seasons during this trip. Yup! I did it. And I’m not at all sorry. 😛
But, as compelling as Jon Snow is, I did manage to see and do things in this fashionable city…
The main religion there is Islam, with significant Buddhist, Hindu and Christian minorities. And such a wide variety of fashionable people out and about all the time from each of these religious groups. I was very tempted to take random shots of people’s outfits to show you what I mean … buuuuuut I wasn’t sure that would go over so well with the locals, so sadly I have no proof to show in this post. But believe me – some highly fashionable folks out there friends!
The subway system there is pretty great – so long as your destination is close to a subway station. Otherwise, the streets of KL can be a real challenge to maneuver alone. Roads on a map have been compared to ‘spaghetti noodles’ – not at all like the convenient grid system of Toronto streets I’ve come to know and love.
I arrived shortly after the celebration of Chinese New Year … so many of the cityscapes and shopping centres still had decorations and lanterns hung…
Lucky for me, Dee had a long-list of delicious meals I HAD TO TRY while I was visiting… and everything I ate while in Malaysia was amazeballs!!!!
The dish on the left (below) is Laksa soup. There are two basic types of laksa: curry laksa and asam laksa. Curry laksa is a coconut curry soup with noodles, while asam laksa is a sour fish soup with noodles. The one I had was curry laksa, I’m pretty sure. 🙂
The dish on the right (above) is Nasi lemak, the national dish of Malaysia. It is a fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaf. Basic simple nasi lemak typically comes with with an egg, anchovies, cucumber, and sambal belacan. This dish is so popular and tasty that people sometimes eat it for all three meals of the day.
There are so many shopping malls in KL! All with the A/C blasting to give everyone a bit of relief from the blazing heat, I’m assuming. IT’S SO HOT THERE!!!
The Central Market is an award-winning tourist attraction and shopping destination, while preserving the significance in showcasing the nation’s arts, culture and heritage.
Some of the cute fascinators and headbands on display …. I really had to control my impulsive shopping habit while I was out and about.
For this reason, I was strict with keeping my purchase limited to super unique and unlikely to find anywhere else 😉
In that same store I found this lovely lightweight navy & green hibiscus floral patterned fabric … that didn’t look like much when I unfolded it…. but then when worn it was the coolest soft pant ever!!! Can’t wait to rock this for summer in Toronto (if the weather cooperates, that is).
For my fellow 80s kids out there…. do you remember those jellybean shoes of your youth? Well guess what I found in the shops of KL? YUP!!! Jellies for Adults!
I couldn’t decide which pair I liked more….so I bought both! 🙂
When it comes to accessories … there are so many adorable things. I just couldn’t decide. But lucky for me that Dee picked these up for me – THANKS DEE!!! They have quickly become my favourite go-to pair of earrings.
The last piece of uniqueness for my closet was this uber soft, reversible vest-scarf-hoodie thing.
At first glance the pattern of this garment drew me in, dark and light grey patterns. But upon closer inspection, it was so interesting and unlike anything I’ve ever seen before, that it had to be mine. 🙂
It’s already gotten many ooh’s and ahh’s when I debuted it to the office last month.
And in true tourist fashion, I hit up a local grocery store to pick up some hot sauces and tea as souvenirs for my folks. PS: That TomYum paste yields delicious soup – check & follow my Instagram for proof friends 😉
Although much of the trip was spent dancing with VLX …. I was able to check out a few sites, ate some amazing meals and even got to visit a tailor to get some custom threads made!!!
A few noteworthy things to mention if you are planning on visiting Vietnam:
There is a VISA requirement for this country. From my earlier post, What to Know Before you Go, many Asian countries issue visas free of charge on arrival at major airports and land-boarders. Vietnam is NOT one of these countries. There are a few online service providers that will help get you started with the Vietnam Visa process, we used: http://www.myvietnamvisa.com/ The application process is simple enough – just go online and apply. But the cost has gone up unfortunately — the online processing fee is $20 (just remember to select Canadian dollars).
Make sure the name you put in is exactly as your passport, that your passport number is correct, and that you put your arrival date correctly. If any of these are incorrect, you might have to pay a heavy fine upon arrival. This takes about 2-3 days to process and they will email you a letter – which you will need to print and bring along with $45 USD in cash exactly, to be paid with CRISP bills – no joke. If your bills are wrinkled or ripped, even slightly, your money will be rejected at the counter and Visa denied.
In addition to this letter, you will be required to fill out a form at the counter that you will have to frantically fill out before they will take your money. Some online service providers send out this form with the letter. Our service didn’t. FYI.
Oh, you also need passport photos – which you might want to get while you’re overseas travelling – as North American passport photos are usually highly overpriced.
The currency used is the Vietnamese DONG – maybe the best currency ever, by name alone 😉 Everyone is a Millionaire there, as $100CAD translates to $1.7Million Dong! It took me the entire 4-days to get used to the giant bills to pay for anything correctly there.
If you’re not already following me on Instagram … Here are a few snaps from my adventures in Hoi An …
I’m a huge fan of asian cuisine … but the amounts of delicious foods that were eaten my short time in Hoi An was magical – and sooooo cheap!!!!!
VIETNAMESE ICED COFFEE (CAFE SUA DA) – This is oh-so delicious. Made with Vietnamese coffee press + Sweetened condensed milk filling a tall glass filled with ice to its brim!
AND then these BLOSSOMS – Hoi An fried wontons are covered in a salsa-like topping of vegetables and sweet and sour shrimp or pork …. they are crispy, mouth-watering works of art.
OK! The below dish is called Cao lầu – it is a regional Vietnamese dish made with noodles, pork, and local greens, and is onlyfound in the town of Hội An.
Naturally, I ate as much of this as I could while I was there.
WHAT I BOUGHT
In terms of souvenirs I behaved myself. My purchases included: two medium-sized fabric lanterns (for my balcony), coconut bowls, Viet snacks for coworkers AND the most delicious coffee ever + metal coffee distiller!
My biggest excitement …and spending … took place with the custom-made clothes!!! 😀
Everyone who had visited Vietnam before, had told me how great the tailors were out there. I was loosing my mind trying to narrow down my choices of what items I wanted to get made.
Before leaving for my trip, I picked pieces that I’d been coveting that didn’t come in plus sizes at the vintage/reproduction boutiques I frequent. And found my TOP FOUR items I wanted to get made:
Buuuuut there were TONS of cool ideas and dress designs hanging all around me at this little shop. And I’ve got a problem and weakness for pretty frocks.
In the end …. SEVEN new pieces actually came home with me! And when all was said and done, each item cost me approx. $42 CAD.
Which is pretty awesome, considering I selected premium fabrics + lining, got to add my own ‘design’ ideas such as adding POCKETS to everything …. and each piece is unique to fit me perfectly.
Nobody in Toronto is gonna be wearing my outfit. Huge Bonus 🙂
Stay tuned for upcoming blogpost highlighting each of these outfits specifically!!! Thanks for reading! xo
Ban hay khong? [bahn nay khom?] – Would you like to dance?
Hoi An, Vietnam!
Of all the places on my travel agenda for this trip – this destination was for the shortest stay. We flew out just for the weekend from KL, Malaysia to Danang, Vietnam ….a 30min drive from Hoi An, specifically for VLX – Vietnam’s Lindyhop Exchange weekend!
What is a lindy hop exchange you ask?
A lindy exchange is a gathering of lindy hop dancers in one city for several days to do the same dance at other venues, showcase ones own talent to the local community, and to dance with visitors and locals alike.
This was my first time swing dancing outside of Canada!
If you remember from my previous post, there was a pie chart highlighting the various nationalities that would be at this dance exchange – I’m proud to say that me and Dee (my travel mate) added to the 7% Canadian slice who were in attendance 🙂
Where We Stayed
We signed ourselves up for the full weekend – which meant we did’t have to do a thing when it came to booking hotels and transportation to/from airport – VLX took care of us as soon as we landed!
We were on a tight dance-filled agenda which began with a Welcome dance our first night at theHoi An Historic Hotel ….
The theme that night was “East Meets West” … here’s what I wore:
Dee and I found these lovely batik printed skirts from The Central Market in KL, and went twinsy for the evening complete with flower in hair and vintage bangs.
AND we were caught on camera and made the News in Nam!!! See if you can spot ME in the news clip friends 😉
While other VLXers woke up super early for a bike ride to explore Hoi An (after dancing ’til 3:30am the night before) …
me and a few other deep-sleepers chose to enjoy the day in the pool instead – until the next afternoon dance of course 🙂
Isn’t this a great picture? I borrowed this hat from a VLX Cowboy …and he snapped this photo complete with cartoon Asian sworded companion. 🙂
Beach Afternoon – An Bang Beach, Hoi An
On Sunday afternoon we were shuttled to An Bang Beach’s Soul Kitchen and took over a lovely little section of sun and shade …in between DANCING, of course!!!
And then the barefoot Lindy Hopping began!
The VLXers of 2015…. such a great group of people!!!
MORE Dancing Nights …
If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you’ve likely already seen a few of these pic and can watch a few vid clips too.
Every evening there was a dinner and a dance planned for us. Here are a few shots of all the fun:
This evening’s dress code was “Extreme Opposites”. I had no idea what that meant … and so I went as Batman!
Our last night in Hoi An, we had a farewell dinner at Green Mango ….with a dress code of “Modern Vintage”
After dinner our last night of dancing in Hoi An….we took the Lindy Hopping to the streets…
My dress is from the Canadian designer Cherry Velvet Plus, click here for outfit deets.
Of all the places I visited this trip, THIS is the city I wish I had spent more time in….sigh. Guess this just means I’ve gotta make another visit sometime soon ❤
Although much of the trip was spent dancing …. I was able to check out a few sites, ate some amazing meals and even got to visit a tailor to get some custom threads made!!! 7 new pieces came home with me!
Stay tuned for the next blogpost highlighting these things specifically!!! Thanks for reading! xo
In case you’ve missed any… PPMeow’sAsian Adventure includes:
For years now, I’ve heard the rumours of how beautiful the beaches of The Philippines are. So Boracay Island was one of the MUST-SEE spots on my travel agenda while I was in South-East Asia last month.
Now, getting to these beautiful beaches takes a bit of effort which included a 35-min LRT ride to Kuala Lumpur Airport, a 4-hour flight to Kalibo, Philippines.
Then a 2-hour bus ride to the edge of the sea to board a questionable mini-ferry boat for a 15-min ride to Boracay Island.
Followed by a 30-min shuttle bus AND a 10-min walk with luggage to our resort bungalow ….
The white sand beaches of Boracay is split up into three boat stations: Stn 1 known to be the ‘party spot’, Stn 2 and Stn 3. Since accommodations can be pricy we chose to stay at a more modest resort for the first 5-nights.
The beachfront location of Stn 1 & 2 is always busy and bustling with activity.
Our little bungalow was a welcomed and lovely quiet respite from the island’s bustling party scene, but close enough to its heart for two single gals on vacation who wanted the complete Boracay experience. 😉
Added bonus to staying at this resort: it’s fully WIFI accessible …. even on this little jungle porch! Which was perfect starting off our day with fresh fruit shakes & delicious breakfasts and for our evenings of impromptu name-that-tune challenges and Facebook updates to make family and friends back home jelly 😉
The only downside to staying in these bungalows was the window AC units were very loud. So night-time was kept cool and tropical with just the fan mode. Plus, earplugs make everything better.
For our last two-nights we checked out of our sweet little bungalow and stayed at this upscale, splurge-o hotel: Henann Garden Resort
Sadly, the pool was the most noteworthy thing about this hotel…. which couldn’t be enjoyed as there weren’t any ‘children only areas’. Which meant children were everywhere running amuck, often without parental supervision! Sigh….
The other disappointments of Henann Garden Resort: it cost us nearly DOUBLE what our 5-night stay cost which got us a “deluxe room” ….. which had zero view, no balcony or access to any private outdoor space and no WiFi. In fact, the entire splashy resort only offered WiFi access in their lobby…which was always crowded for this reason.
Thank goodness the bulk of our stay was at The Boracay Beach Resort ... how I miss it so! *sniff sniff*
WHAT WE DID
Both of our hotels were located along the White Beach between Stn 1 and the island’s newest center, D’Mall. There are tons of shops and restaurants within this area…which we explored daily.
Boracay Island is a water sport enthusiasts mecca!
Sadly, as I’m a non-swimmer (for more facts you didn’t know about moi, click here), I spent my days being a beach-bum working on my tan (ha!), eating, drinking and exploring the beach.
Like the day where we noticed a grouping of rocks off in the distance towards the end of Stn 1.
According to the map this was known as Willy’s Rock. I thought maybe it had something to do with the classic 80s flick GOONIES one-eyed-Willy … but upon closer inspection turns out this point of interest is actual a Christian shrine – notice the statue.
We actually walked to it from shore and you can swim to and around it, as the water was quite shallow around it.
We also came across this giant Gorilla after lunch one day … kinda random, right?
There was a lot of time spend lazing around on the beach and on the hammock of our bungalow’s veranda reading my book: Gone Girl. (Really, really enjoyed it. Sadly, it wasn’t one of the movie offerings on any of my flights back…le sigh.)Watching the sailboats at sunset never got old…
Toward the end of the week, I wandered over to the end of Stn 3 and noticed that the clear blue waters were keeping covered in thick green grossness. Apparently at this time of year this algae seems to take over the shores. It wasn’t THIS bad by where we staying, thankfully. And once you’ve managed to walked past all the greenness, the water was perfect!
And People-Watching was always entertaining…
We got pretty chatty with one of the below table of dancers/hireable companions… so much so, that by the end of the evening one asked to touch my boobs 😮
True Story!!!! LOL!!!
Nightly entertainment along the beach included live cover bands and fire-dancers. Visit my Instagram for vid clips of these performances 🙂
Oh! And I even donned my first bikini ever beachside and poolside! Woot!
WHAT I BOUGHT
Now y’all know I’m a hardcore shopper. But this year I’m really focused on spending money on ‘experiences’ rather than things…. and I have to say that there wasn’t anything particularly fabulous that I needed to purchase from Boracay Island.
I did come across this young artist on the beach, who was making personalized jewellery out of surgical steel wire. Earrings, necklaces and rings.
As you can see, I got myself one …complete with butterfly motif and pink beads…which worked out to be a whopping $6 CAD 🙂
We also found a caricaturist along the beach – THIS was not at all the pose we picked to be drawn.
LOLOL!! I’m pretty sure they thought we were apart of a lesbian commune. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. 😉
Also, seems I’m white in caricature, while my gf is part of the big-titty-committee. LOLOL!!! Too funny!
I have to admit, there wasn’t anything AMAZING that I had to bring home with me from Boracay. OH!!! I did discover that full body massages along the beach and (if you preferred, in private air-conditioned lofts) worked out to $10 CAD for an hour!!! Naturally, I had one every day I was there!!! Paradise just got better!
All that returned to the T-dot with me was a bottle of Red Horse Beer that I couldn’t finish the eve of our departure and these chocolate covered mangos I picked up at the airport. Both are delicious!
So there you have it friends. Hope you enjoyed reliving destination 1 of 3 in my 22-day Asian Adventure with me. Stay tuned for the next instalment. xo
Thinking about travelling to Asia yourself?
In case you’ve missed any… PPMeow’sAsian Adventure includes:
Asia: What to Know Before you Go – click here for blogpost