Category Adventure

On the Road: East / West, USA

Just sharing a short video I made from countless clips taken while we were on the road traveling along the West and East coast, plus Hawaii.  From Cali to New York, back to Cali then to Hawaii, then back to Cali. Clips may not have been placed in the best order, but enjoy!  We certainly enjoyed the new experiences we encountered along the way, from skydiving to visiting the top of the Empire State building, to trying poke for the first time.  Click below to watch the video.

The Road to Hana: Maui

These past 2-3 years have been a real blessing to me in terms of traveling.  Even though I had a full time day job for the past two years, I still got the chance to travel to countries I hadn’t been to before (despite the limited number of leaves I could take).  I feel so grateful that at my age, I’ve been able to travel to most of East and Southeast Asia, some of Europe and America, and am continuing to visit places I haven’t been to or revisit the ones I really love.  Naturally, human nature makes us a bit greedy, and I admit I often think or dream of what other places I’ll land up in someday.

Last weekend, my partner and I along with some friends, flew to Hawaii to enjoy the Memorial Day weekend.  We spent 4 days in Maui, enjoying delicious food and soaking up fresh air.  It felt good to be connected to nature.  These days we rarely get the chance to be disconnected with technology and media, and when you’re at the beach or somewhere far away under waterfalls without cellular signal, then you have no other choice but to sit back and enjoy the view.

You might be wondering why the title says “Road to Hana.” Though Hana means ‘work’ in Hawaii, it’s also the name of a small town in Maui which a famous highway leads to.  The highway to Hana was made in such a way that as you go along that road, you get to stop by some of the most beautiful spots on the island.  Scroll down below to see some of the things we saw on our trip too. 🙂

The big island (Honolulu) as seen from the top of Haleakala Crater, Maui.
TrekkingBig Island Maui Observatory Accordion player Haleakala Crater drive Kihei in Central Maui is a great place to make your base. Aloha life Flowers A typical cafe in Paia, a charming beach town. Cafe des Amis Maui Black sand maui Paia Maui Oneuli Beach, with black sand made up of ground lava. Check out the exposed layers of cinder and lava on this picture:Oneuli BeachThe road to Hana continues on and we made several stops along the way.Road to Hana 'O'he'o Gulch Haleakala drive Maui Road Hawaii plants vast natural landscapeHawaii beachmaui waterfalls Kula Lodge Maui Hawaii plant lifeWaterfallsTravel Photographer 7 sacred pools 'O'he'o Gulch hikeRecommendations:

We stayed in Kihei in an airbnb which was as lovely as the owner, details here.

If you’re planning to travel the road to Hana, I highly recommend downloading this App which is like a GPS tour guide. It costs only $5 and gives you information so you don’t miss out on the best spots. We wouldn’t have known which stops to make without this incredible app.

Every Friday the town hosts a party in different parts of the island. Check out this link for info where the next party will be.

Have fun!

Bright Lights, Big Dreams: NYC

New York has always been on my bucket list of cities to visit.  Since I was small I always thought I’d come and live here one day.  Well I’m not living in this city yet, but it’s confirmed – I love this city and I think it loves me back.  The energy is just contagious.  I woke up at 5 am one day and to my surprise, it wasn’t lonely to walk around the city at this time.  Of course I wasn’t really alone either, I was with my partner in crime traveling in the dodgy metros at that ungodly hour to catch a sunrise across a bridge.  I can’t say he liked waking up that early, and neither did I, but it was nice to see a huge city wake up slowly.

All I can say is that New York is really beautiful.  Beyond my expectations.  Wish we could have stayed a lil longer but I guess it’s good to keep it short and sweet for now.
Sunset NY Sunset Empire State city skyline Empire State Times Square NY Metro station New York Metro New Yorker Travel Photographer couple photographer Brooklyn Bridge Brooklyn Bridge NY Downtown NY Life in NY Russ & Daughters Rainy New York Brooklyn Bridge 6am Morning run NY Brooklyn Bridge cycling New York traveler in New York NY Canvas NY City canvas NY Public Library iloveNY NY green Central Park weekend Art in the park travel journal Central Park West Village copy West Village

First Impressions: Cali Living

 

It’s only been two weeks since I’ve flown in to LA and already it feels like it’s so easy to blend in.  Although at the moment there is no permanent address yet ~ (we’re living in a suitcase going from one place to another and yes I can’t wait to have my own pots and dishes)… do remind me when I start regretting once we’re fully settled and I’d wish we were traveling again.

It’s been 13 years since I’ve been back in this part of the world, yet because of media I realized that you can feel like you’ve been in this country even without visiting it.  I don’t know about you but from where I come from, our movies and tv series mostly took place in the US.  Imagine Modern Family, Brady Bunch, or even Simpsons being the family you meet on the elevator.

Surprisingly, people around here all seem to have their own persona.  It felt like a lot of people want to be stars when I paid a visit to Hollywood, and they could be, in an instant if someone discovers them there.  I drove by the Pollo Loco where Brad Pitt used to work as a chicken mascot, just to make ends meet before he became the star he is today.  And the hotel where all the big stars used to stay, and the neighborhood where Shirley Temple lived and where Marilyn Monroe died. It’s crazy if you think how these people changed lives the moment they got into showbiz, not necessarily for better or worse. When walking the streets in downtown LA, everyone you see is a different person. Their taste in clothing or choice of music defines who they are, or even how they walk and how they talk.  And that seems to be important to them, they have to have a personality.

One more thing I noticed is how big this place is.  It drives me nuts to see the 405 highway to have so many driving lanes and how bad traffic gets because everyone is driving a car on their own.  The other day I heard on the radio that one highway going to San Diego is being expanded to 15 lanes on each side. That’s 30 lanes of a highway! Crazy!

Enough first impressions, take a photo tour and see the things I’ve snapped and eaten so far in sunny Cali.dtlaofficine Brera

Downtown L.A.
cityscape downtown LASheraton Lounge

The Awesome Grand Central Market Grand Central Market LAist

Old and new
old and new

Historical part of DTLA, Bradbury Building
Bradbury Building old historic area LA

Off to the beaches: Manhattan B, Venice B, Long B, and Oceanside
Manhattan Beach PortOceanside beach Manhattan Beach Venice Beach surfers Beach life Venice Beach Venice Beach life LA life Van Gogh Mural Oceanside california Oceanside CA California Life Long beach

San Diego San Diego skylineSan Diego Pacific coast skydiving Catalina Island

And lastly Agoura Hills Agoura hills 2 Agoura hills

Tropical Paradise

Despite being born in the Philippines, I haven’t really had the chance to travel around my own country that much.  I guess its the same as most other nations, many of my friends haven’t even seen their own country’s landmarks.  So many travelers from around the globe travel thousands of miles just to see sea turtles in my country, while I fell into the trap of choosing destinations that allowed me to check off my list almost all of Southeast Asia.

So, after quitting my job recently in Shanghai, I decided that I will take a break and go back home to be with my family.  My boyfriend also wanted to come visit, so we made a plan to travel for a bit.  I chose Dumaguete because I had been to the Apo Island marine sanctuary ten years ago with my mom and fell in love with the corals there.  And on the map we saw that Bohol and Cebu are not too far either, so we flew in to Dumaguete and flew out from Cebu.  In between we took a 5 hour bus ride to get from Dumaguete to Cebu.

I must admit though, that the travel in this journey was indeed one of the most painful ever. Lol. We ended up enjoying snorkeling in Apo Island a bit too much and came home with a really bad burn.  The worst part was we didn’t realize how bad our skin was feeling only until evening, it was like a gradual roasting.  By the next day we could barely get out of bed – and this was also the day we had chosen to take the 5 hour bus ride to our next destination.  The bus arrived late, of course… and when it came, all passengers scrambled to save a seat – because reserved seating does not exist yet.  I was high-fiving myself in pain from the bad sunburn, hot humid weather, and all the other passengers pushing each other to get on the bus.  Luckily we were welcomed into Cebu with a very nice garden hotel, and we were able to book through the hotel a Bohol day tour for the next day which was very convenient.

Scroll down below to see some of the photos we took on our trip.

Twin Lakes Dumaguete Philippine scenery Philippine sunrise Philippine coast Philippine beaches Zamboangita Visayas sea turtle Dumaguete to Cebu Montebello Villa Baclayon Church Bohol Bohol Church Bohol Church 2 Travel Photographer Amanda See Photography Travel Diary janeamandasee Bohol on the road Butterfly sanctuary Garden Green Chocolate Hills Bohol hills Philippine Sea

Accommodations:

Dumaguete – Kav’s Beach Resort. Details here.

Cebu – Montebello Villa Hotel. Details here.