Category Food

Anchored Away in Cancun

Towards the end of last year, my husband and I (I’m still not used to calling him that) decided to go on a relaxing trip to Cancun.  In case you didn’t already know, Cancun is best to visit in the months of December to February, when the country experiences milder temperatures thanks to the cold winds of the North.  This being their peak season, we dreaded flocks of tourists so we decided to avoid that by going just a bit earlier.  And our timing couldn’t have been more perfect.
One of the many reasons we chose Cancun to holiday in is because it’s undeniably close to the United States.  If we can’t go back to the pristine beaches of Asia, where else could we turn to?  From L.A. we took a direct flight to Cancun, which took about 4 hours and under $300 for a return ticket.  Not bad eh?  And then we landed here.     Luckily because we came at the end of November, we didn’t have to face a crowded island and rub shoulders with other tourists.  There was plenty of space and privacy, it almost felt like the resort was all ours.  We stayed at the Marriott Casa Magna Cancun using our SPG points and we think we made the best choice, because we loved the colonial style architecture and the spaciousness of the resort (compared to the JW Marriott next door).  Going to Cancun cannot be complete without visiting one of the seven wonders of the world.  The Chichen Itza, the world renowned historical city which dates back to 600 AD, was an amazing sight to see.  Walking through the grounds felt different, or at least to me I imagined what it must have been like to live there in that era.
And while you’re in the Yucatan Peninsula, I highly recommend dipping yourself in one of the mysterious cenotes.  The cenotes are natural sinkholes that could be deeper than 60 meters or comparably like a 20 to 30 floor building.  It’s so deep that when you look below all you’ll see is an abyss – dark, mysterious, and scary.  Naturally, the water is cold and will make you shiver on your first dip, but feels very refreshing on a warm summer day.  In the photo below you’ll see all of us wearing life jackets because it’s a requirement. The depth of the hole is not to be joked about.  One good thing I took away from this trip was I learned the Mexican way of appreciating life as it is, and to enjoy the art of doing nothing.  Though we explored the city, we put aside a lot of time to just relax by the beach, play in the pool, or enjoy a good meal.  It gave me a relaxed and peaceful feeling which felt like something I hadn’t felt for a long while.  I’m the type of person who can’t stand sitting by the beach all day – although some people really enjoy doing that, I never understood what good came out of it.  So I can almost say it felt like my first time to go on a holiday.

The Journey to Ouarzazate

The journey from Marrakech to Ouarzazate is one that I think I will remember for the rest of my life.  If not, it is one of the most scenic routes I have ever taken, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that.

From the city of Marrakech, we joined a group on a tour and all of us went together on a shuttle.  It came as no surprise later on when we noticed that no big buses ever came along this route.  You know why? Because as we climbed up through the Atlas Mountains and onto the side of Ouarzazate, we faced narrow winding roads which can cause you to get car sick even if you normally don’t.

So what’s so great about the journey?  It’s the changing landscapes, from dry arid deserts to cold snow capped mountain peaks, to Berber villages on the side of the road and huge rock formations that seem like pebbles that have been thrown by giants down the hills.

Not only that but you get to see a great deal of Moroccan art in the villages too, and in the market places.  We saw natural crystals being sold on the side of the road, local women making argan oil, artists making water color art with tea and saffron, weaved carpets, colorful tagines, pottery, and so much more.

Scroll down below to see some of the things we saw on our journey, and see why I fell in love with the landscape. 

Exploring Mexico

Mexico was every bit as lively as we imagined it to be.  From day one, the moment we landed into the city and saw the colorful streets and houses – til we left in a hurry from Frida Khalo’s colorful home, our journey was packed with ooohs, ahhhs, and yumm.  And yes, our first meal was of tacos!  In retrospect, I always took for granted Mexican cuisine and only used to recognize it for tacos, but in fact their cuisine is so diverse and tasty that it’s almost underrated.  I’m imagining the chapulines, moles, churros, and hand-churned chocolate shakes we encountered in our journey…

Scroll down below to see more of our Mexico trip:
Spanish Architecture Classic Mexican Restaurant Street Photography Travel Mexico Mexico Church Tour Taxco Mexico Taxco Mexico Travel Mexican Old Town Mexico Travel Latin American Town Vintage BeetleMexican Colorful culture Taxco Little Town Travel Photography Travel Photographer Daily Life in Taxco Latino Lovers Mexico Details Mexico City Puebla Cholula Mexican Delicacy Cholula city view Cholula City Mexican Pony Carousel Xochimilco Taco Vendor Mexican foodMexican Town

Traces of Summer: Cali

The wind in my hair speaks of summer in the air.

Polite provisionsIf I were to sum up in a few words what I thought San Diego was like, I’d say the best that would describe my thoughts of it would be: a good balance of bitter and sweet like a good cup of coffee.  Almost everywhere you go you’ll see a laid-back atmosphere, even among working crowds.  There are a few tall buildings in downtown, but majority of the area is flat and spread out.

The city’s aura could be largely due to it’s proximity to the ocean, which allows it’s residents to relax on the beach and enjoy some waves anytime they want.  I uploaded a few photos of the said beach just a few days ago here.

The areas I liked the most was downtown, Little Italy and North Park, where you could easily find a number of good restaurants.  The photos above are from Polite Provisions and Soda & Swine, which are connected to each other at the hip.

The US Grant Luxury HotelAbove: The Grant Luxury Hotel in downtownSan Diego GaslampBelow: The Balboa park botanical gardensBotanic Garden San DiegoBelow: colorful tiles at the Spanish village, Balboa ParkFood in LAAbove: Bottega Louie in downtown LA

Blogger Spotlight on Sidechef

My dear friends at Sidechef recently asked me if I wanted to do a weekend takeover of their instagram account and of course I said yes!  In case you’ve still not heard of it, Sidechef is an awesome foodie app which teaches you how to cook step-by-step, with instructional videos and even an online shop so you can make a delicious meal with ease.  You can download it on the app store or in google play for androids.

Aside from taking over their instagram over the weekend, they did a short interview with me which they featured on their blog, which you can read here.  We talked a bit about my childhood, how I got into food photography, and… what superpower I’d want if I were a superheroine (or maybe even villain, muhahaha).
food photodream kitchen

My dream kitchen courtesy of Pinterest