12/10/2015

A Reflection of my Church and Cultural Tour of South Korea.




Last November of 2015, great news arrived at the school. This is when the Directress of Westhill International School, Ms. Grace Eun Sook Im, mentioned that she would like to take some students to South Korea for a church tour and simultaneously to visit the scenic places around Seoul, South Korea. I was also blessed that I was chosen to go along with the students on this trip.



13 students were chosen to go to South Korea from the Grade 9 and 10. Most of them are also part of the worship team of Westhill International School. When they all heard that news, they were ecstatic! They could not believe that they were given this opportunity to be part of this trip.

After all the paper work and completing the requirements, time finally arrived for us to travel to South Korea. We left late night via Jeju Air and after 4 hours in the air, hello South Korea! 

Though tired from the whole plane trip, you can still see that the students and teachers were  overwhelmed by everything. They still couldn't believe that they were really in South Korea! We were also introduced to some of the pastors of our host church, Seoyhun Presbyterian Church in Seoul, South Korea. 





After a few minutes of waiting at the airport we were met by Mam Im along with Teacher Jinny ( Jinkyoung) , Gayeon , Teacher Chris and Rev. Cheong who were with us during our stay in South Korea.  They were very nice and kind to us all and we got along easily with them. It almost felt like we'd all known each other for a long time.

During our stay in South Korea,  we were exposed to different  cultures, heritage, technology and delicious the food that South Korea can offer. They took us to different night markets where students collected different cosmetics and face masks from famous Korean brands. They even took us to a Nanta Show, a musical play that showcased the culture of South Korea.



We also visited different historical sites such as villages and castles in Seoul which depicts what life was like in the old days. Students were even able to try some of the South Korean arts which they really enjoyed. 








This tour was also educational since we visited top universities like Ewha Women's University and Yonsei University which gave students the idea of the importance of education and how the education system works in South Korea. 



They even took us to Lotte World where students got the scariest ride of their life. And, lastly, they took us to famous buffet restaurants like VIPS and Chelsey. I can't believe how much I ate during my stay in South Korea. That's how much I enjoyed South Korean food!




We also had the opportunity to stay in different home stays and got to experience how life was like in South Korea. It made me realize the value of having a close family ties among South Korean and how education was one of the top priorities, especially among the young generation. I am very privileged to have stayed and met the family of JinHee Song who welcomed us wholeheartedly into their home. 



And most of all one of the most memorable things during our trip was when I sang and the students performed in front of many people at Seo Yun Presbyterian Church. It was a magical and truly wonderful experience to be serving the Lord and using God's blessings.




I thank God most specially for this wonderful blessing of visiting South Korea. I am also thankful to the people that I met and get along with, especially Teacher Jinny, Teacher Chris, Gayeon, and Pastor Cheong, Ms. Grace Eun Sook Im for the opportunity, our hosts during our home stay JinHee Song, whose family were very hospitable and accommodating to all of us, and the rest of the members of Seohyun Church.






This is not going to be the last time I will visit South Korea, the experience I had and the good memories they left made me decide that I will spend a winter in South Korea, hopefully in 2016! To God Be The Glory! 




12/05/2015

7 Best Travel Destinations in Europe that I want to visit in 2016!

Back in 2013, I was very blessed to have given a chance to explore and visit the famous tourist spots in United Kingdom for 30 days. We basically drove all over the UK and even extended our tour to Ireland. That was one of the happiest moments of my life!

This 2016, another blessing arrived and again I have been invited by friends and families to visit the UK and in addition to that, we are going to go on a European tour! Crossing thumbs it pushes through! 

Why visit Europe? Coming from Asia, there are definitely countless reasons why you have to tour Europe. A trip to these European countries opens explorers to various nations, dialects, societies and differing history, breathtaking views and food. 

In addition to that, travelers won’t get bothered with all those border stops. An agreement enables travelers to cross borders just by using one passport stamp ( Schengen visa ) upon arrival and one during departure from Europe. You can easily get through one place to another. During this coming trip, we are going to fly from Manila to London and from there, we are going to be using a campervan to tour the other beautiful countries of Europe!

1. UNITED KINGDOM



If you think that UK is compose solely of huge building and infrastructures, then you definitely need to see their breathtaking landscapes, of all sorts of variety. With the combined forces of nature, this relatively small country came up with the most amazing landscapes you could ever think of. 

2. NETHERLANDS

Photo Source: http://www.holland.com/us/tourism/interests/dutch-nature-1/flower-fields-4.htm 

You can enjoy more of this place if you’re into all sorts of water. You can simply sit by the canal side and enjoy watching boats goes by. After that, you can simply roam the area just by renting a bike. Escape to nature and enjoy their delicious cuisines I hope to see tulips when I visit! 

3. GERMANY

Photo Source: www.germany.info

If you’re into festivals and all other parties and events, Germany is the place to be. They have Carnival Season, Berlin Film Festival, Oktoberfest, Bachfest Leipzig, Frankfurt Book Fair, Wagner Festival in Bayreuth, and Festival Mediaval. Aside from that, find beautiful structures, landscapes and great food! 

4. AUSTRIA

Photo Source: http://www.touropia.com/tourist-attractions-in-austria/ 
Want to see some castles? Austria has a bundle of them. Castle Hohenwerfen is a must see. The delightful urban life is surrounded by mountains and beautiful nature. Famous people like Mozart, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Franz Schubert and Johann Strauss were also born in Austria. Their desserts, Sachertorte and Apfelstrudel are definitely worth a try. 

5. ITALY 
Photo Source: http://www.italiatourismonline.com/en/regions/20-veneto 

Italy is considered to be one of the finest tourist destinations in Europe. By exploring this place, you’ll get to see beautiful canals, trendy fashion, breathtaking landscapes, art treasure and their traditional food. Burano, Faraglioni Capri, Isola Bella, Italian Coastal Town, Manarola, Positano, Rome, Venice and the Luxury Villa located at Lake Como are the most popular tourist spots in Italy. 

6. SWITZERLAND

Photo Source: http://www.myswitzerland.com/en-us/interests/top-attractions/the-matterhorn-in-your-sights.html 

Switzerland is famous for outdoor activities like skiing and snowboarding. But then there’s a lot more to do in this gorgeous place. Matherhorn is the famous symbol of Switzerland, take a tour of this legendary mountain by riding the Gornergrat railway. Mountain adventures made extra fun when you’re in Switzerland. If you want to experience nature at its best, you can stay in a hayloft. Kids will have this once in a lifetime experience of cuddling some cute animals. Experience rural and urban life in Switzerland, a rare experience you’ll reminisce over for life. 

7. FRANCE

Photo Source: http://en.parisinfo.com/what-to-see-in-paris/monuments/famous-monuments-or-monuments-to-discover 

Paris, the City of Lights, is attracting millions of tourists every year. The legendary Eiffel Tower is one good reason why you should visit this place. Paris Disneyland is also a must see destination. Your holiday getaway in France wouldn’t be complete without experiencing their food and wine.

12/04/2015

10 Places in the Philippines I want to Explore in the 2016!

There are a bundle of reasons why you should definitely visit the Philippines. Other than the hospitality of the people, the Philippines is also famous for its magnificent scenery. We have some of the best beaches in the world, we have one of the most diverse eco systems in the world, and we have the most tasty and delicious Filipino foods and delicacies one country could offer to tourist. 


As I move on to another year, I have no plans of stopping, my feet are too itchy to explore different places around the Philippines and I believe it is possible. And of course, I am going to share my experience with all of you!

I believe that I will be going to many beautiful tourist spots and exploring more places in the Philippines in the future. But with all that, my dream is to visit these 10 places in 2016. I may not be able to do all, but who knows,

Always expect the unexpected! 

In this article, I came up with 10 places I want to visit in the near future or should I simply say 10 places on my bucket list to visit around the Philippines. Each places I believe has their own characteristics that defines the Philippines and that I cannot wait to explore! 

1. TACLOBAN 

Photo Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:San_Juanico_Bridge_2.JPG

Though this city suffered so much during the Typhoon Haiyan, the people here are still very accommodating and the ourist spots are fortunately back to normal. One of the most famous tourist spots in Tacloban is a visit to the San Juanico Bridge. This is apparently the longest bridge in the Philippines extending up to over 2 kilometers longs. Aside from that, I want to explore Tacloban in terms of food, landscape and culture. 

2. BACOLOD

Photo Source: http://mynegrosislandguide.com/promos/masskara-festival-package-deals/ 

Situated in the beautiful province of Negros Occidental, and one of the famous attractions in Bacolod is their Maskara Festival every October - that, I really want to experience! Aside from that, they are also known to have a rich history and natural wonders that you definitely should see. Food and other delicacies here are some of the things I want to try as well! 

3. CAPIZ

Photo Source: http://weheartit.com/entry/group/14737239 

I want to explore the variety of sea foods here in Capiz since it known to be the Seafood Capital of the Philippines. I also wanted to see the largest bell in South East Asia which is found at the Pan-Ay Church. This is also the birthplace of the late President Manuel A. Roxas. 


4. MARINDUQUE

Photo Source: http://vigattintourism.com/tourism/destinations/80 

A heart shaped island surrounded by clear waters and a beautiful coastline, Marinduque has a lot of beautiful beaches to choose from. Aside from the hospitality of the people here, I want to visit the Bathala Cave in Sta Cruz, Marinduque. If you are person who loves mountain climbing or simply hiking, this place is definitely for you. 

5. CARAMOAN

Photo Source: http://www.caramoanislands.com/ 

Caramoan became famous because the hit reality show, Survivor, was filmed here. After that, locals started coming to this place and checked out the different places to see in Caramoan. From the pictures I've seen, it look gorgeous! I would like to do some island hopping around the beautiful beaches in Caramoan and I am sure they have amazing coral reefs around there. Definitely worth exploring in 2016!

6. BATAD, BANAUE


Photo Source: http://www.banaue-tours.com/portfolio-view/batad-village/ 

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Batad in Banaue will make sure that every tourists who visits Batad will definitely fall in love with it easily. These terraces were created thousand of years ago by our ancestors and now it is the most visited tourist spot in Banaue. Make the opportunity to walk down the famous rice terraces, but take note that you need to roam around by foot. You can also stay in the Ifugao huts and have a taste of their rice wine. 

7. TAWI-TAWI

Photo Source: http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=1588746 

Situated in the Southernmost part of the Philippines, Tawi-Tawi is packed with unspoiled scenery and wonderful heritage sites. This province is teeming with surprises starting with unspoiled diving sites to several mountains and that is why, after seeing some photos of some travel bloggers of their trip to Tawi-Tawi, I suddenly realised that I want to also tour Tawi-Tawi! 

8. DAVAO

Photo Source: visitdavao.com 

If you want some fun under the sun, Davao is the place to be. You take a view of the famous Mt. Apo, renowned Samal Island, Eden Nature Park, Crocodile Park, and the People’s Park. After visiting those places, experience extreme adventure with their white water rafting, zipline, wakeboarding and diving. I believe that the bustling city of Davao is also very lively and I can't wait to try that out! 

9. ROMBLON

Photo Source: http://the-three-p.com/en/gallery/romblon/ 


Romblon is also packed with unspoiled sites worthy of your time and effort. Romblon is situated in between two bigger islands, Sibuyan and Tablas. Its rich historical heritage is a plus point. When I went to Boracay via 2Go Ferry, we stopped at Romblom and found out that it could be the next Boracay in the future, the Carabao Beach! 

10. SIQUIJOR ISLAND

Photo Source: http://www.islandsofthephilippines.com/2013/12/the-enchanting-beauty-of-siquijor/ 

Tagged as the smallest province of the Philippines, Suquijor is slowly gaining more tourists every year. They are captivated by its mystical charm and its attractive natural wonders: white beaches, waterfalls and diving sites are just few destinations you’ll have to check out on the beautiful island of Siquijor. Can't wait!