Monday, July 7, 2014

Fundacion Pacita Hotel Batanes

Watch out for my new post



Monday, June 23, 2014

Bustling City of Busan: Jagalchi Seafood Market & Nampodong Shopping

This is Part 3 of my Korea series. Have you read my other posts?
Part 1: Winter Sonata's Nami Island and Myeongdong Shopping in Seoul 
Part 2: Everland Resort: Korea's Disneyland 

We took the efficient KTX bullet train from Seoul to Busan. Korea's modern high-speed train completes the journey from the capital's central railway station to Busan in around three hours. Ticket costs 58,000 won (P2,500) one-way. For convenience, have a korean friend book and buy your tickets online because these are the trains most likely to sell-out ahead of time. KTX website and iphone apps are in Korean.

A piece of advice:  If you can possibly avoid it, try NOT to travel back to Seoul on a Sunday night. Tickets sell fast, can be quite pricey and poor souls wanting to get back to Seoul might end up in standing room.

Welcome to the vibrant, bustling and cosmopolitan city of Busan! Beside the busy port in the heart of the city is Jagalchi, South Korea's largest seafood market. Giant fishing boats deliver the latest catch directly to the stalls day and night.

Korean women dressed in wide sunhats, heavy aprons and long rubber gloves attend to their respective stalls. Women are called Jagalchi "ajumma" - the Korean word for "middle-aged woman'' or "married women.' History tells us that this market survived in the years immediately after the Korean War when there weren't many men around to take care of business.

Being here in this precise moment is truly experiencing stalls and stalls of commercial trade of selling raw fish and other seafoods straight from the ocean. 

Almost right off the boat, fish and shellfish, eels, squids, mollusks, mackerels, sea squirts and even whale meat are sold fresh to consumers daily.

As a spring season delicacy, Yuni made us try a hwe (sashimi) slices of some flat fish. It was very fresh and had a sweet delicate taste.


Another way to enjoy those hwes is to place it on the leaves, spread on a layer of red pepper sauce and top it off with kimchis.

Adjacent to Jagalchi Market is the enormous Nampodong International market, also known as Guk-je Market.

We were in for some serious shopping and bargain haunts! With only a few hours to spare, we hurriedly browse hundreds after hundreds of trendy clothes.

Shopping during spring season means dainty pastels of        cardigans, fluffy sweaters, cover-ups, flashy trench coats and denim jackets.  

Snow boots likewise known as UGGS are a steal for as low as 5,000 won! ( $5 or P220 pesos) I've checked its counterpart prices in Seoul where it retails for 20,000 won. These faux sheepskin boots are amazingly warm and oh so comfy!

I think I just died and went straight to korean dress heaven! For these fashionable pieces, prices starts for as low as 10,000 won or P450 pesos.

The effect of retail therapy on us! Big wide grins (tee-hee)

Locals flock the alley ways lined-up with various tasty Korean street food. There's fish cake, churros, deep fried dumplings, sushi and more.

When in Korea, eat what the locals eat. And we would never pass up the chance to try our hands on an authentic bowl of bibimbap. Mixed rice with assorted meat and vegetables.

Busan I will always remember you as the greatest place for the freshest ocean catch, trendy affordable clothes, delicious street food and authentic bibimbap.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Unboxing my June 2014 Benefit Cosmetics Exclusive BDJ BOX

The scorching summer heat and humidity has been painstakingly melting my make-up nowadays. But lo and behold! Comes the June 2014 BDJ Box to the rescue! Oh the joys of being a BDJ Bella.

 This Benefit Cosmetics Exclusive BDJ Box contains no-sweat strategies for warm-weather beauty that will keep you looking fresh and gorgeous no matter how hot it gets this summer.

What's inside the June BDJ Box?
1. Porefessional PRO Balm, 22ml - Helps achieve translucent pore coverage and smoother than smooth skin. This oil-free primer will smoothen any open pores to make it glowing and absolutely flawless.

2. Fake Up Concealer, 3.5g - Hides dark circles and diffuses fine lines for a silky smooth, ultra-natural look. It won't cake, crease nor settle so no worries for your eye area.

3. Big Easy, 35ml - A multi-balancing complexion perfector that self-adjusts to your shade to even out skintone and conceal imperfections.

4. Stay Flawless - This instant PRO-long primer acts like a magnet to lock on your foundation for 15 fresh and flawless hours!

5. It's Potent Eye Cream, 14.2ml - Say goodbye to dark circles and hello to brighter, younger looking eyes.

6. Lollitint, 12.5ml - This candy orchid tint treats lips and cheeks to a pop of dreamy sweetness. It is the flirtiest flush you can get from a bottle.

7. Benetint, 12.5ml - This original rose-tinted stain is kiss proof, see-through color for lips and cheeks that lasts for hours.Just the sexiest flush you can get from a bottle.

8. Brow wax service discount voucher for only P300. And a free makeupper when you drop by your fave Benefit store.

9. "Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful" stickers.

Subscribe now to BDJ Box every month and surprise yourself with the latest makeup, skin care and hair care products from premium brands. Learn how to be beautiful and learn makeup tips and tutorials from the BDJ Beauty Ministry.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Everland Resort: Korea's Disneyland

Spring announces its arrival in Korea! Temperature ranges from 5℃ to 20℃ and the return of warm weather brings cherry blossoms, apricot flowers, and cornus fruit trees to bloom all over the country.

Everland in Yongin, a city in Gyeonggi-do Province is South Korea's largest theme park home to over 40 heart-pounding rides and attractions. See Everland bloom with 120 brilliantly colored tulips as it hosts this year's Tulip Festival. 

Oh it sure feels nice to be young again! (tee-hee) The park is divided into five zones, each has its own distinct themes. Go for Zoo-topia if you're up for a trip through the wild world of animals. Magic Land transports you to the land of imagination and all things 'abracadabra'. 

The American and European Adventure both offers thrilling, hair raising rides, exhilarating roller coasters and mind-blowing stimulations.

Global Fair is an international market of shopping outlets

Enjoy the adventures of Pororo and friends leaving on the Super Sled in 3D more vividly and experience lots of fun!

Sadly, majority of the rides were closed due to the occasional downpour of rain.  

But that shouldn't be a reason to frown! There's a lot to be thankful for. Being here at this exact moment is already a blessing.

Atleast some rides ( like the cable car ) were open despite the heavy rains

Wind was uber chilly and our hands were literally numb to touch (so this was how Elsa in the Disney Movie Frozen felt ) so we decided to keep warm inside the heated burger joint. We had the Cajun and Shrimp burger. 

Stroll along the theme park in one of these playful ribbon headbands

Beautifully detailed Korean dolls wearing traditional Korean clothing. Hanbok, as well as historical clothing from the Chosun and Shilla Dynasties.

We were a bit skeptical in shopping for Korean skincare and makeup inside the theme park thinking the prices might be too steep and overrated. But I tell you, prices are almost the same as buying them from the regular stores and even underground train shops. Includes lots of promo and sale items and they were even more generous in giving out samples and freebies. 

Nature Republic face masks on a buy 20 take 10 promo

Tubs of Nature Republic's Cooling Aloe Vera Gel selling like hotcakes! 

How to get here?

Mai and I braved the public transportation (despite the language barrier ) and took Bus 66 from Suwon Station. You can also board Bus 5002 from Gangnam Bus Station or Jamsil Station. The chance of getting lost is zero because you just have to alight at the last bus stop. We hopped to another shuttle bus ( for free! ) to get to the main entrance of the resort.

Piece of advice: Print this discount coupon to save 9,000 won per adult ( approx $9) You can also download this from the Everland Resort's website. 

And there's no better way to cap off the night than to enjoy an authentic Korean cuisine. A friend graciously treated us to Dakibong Restaurant to try Dak Galbi.

Dak galbi is a popular Korean dish generally made by stir-frying marinated diced chicken in a gochujang (chili pepper paste) based sauce, and sliced cabbage, sweet potato, scallions, onions, perilla leaves, and tteok (rice cake) together on a hot plate. 

Thank you Marian for the sumptuous Dak Galbi dinner!