Skull Island Filming Location: Aboriginal village in Ninh Binh, Vietnam

Hey everyone! Have you watched the reboot version of King Kong franchise – Kong: Skull Island (2017)? You must wonder where those amazing scenes were filmed, don’t you? Vietnam was proudly one of the selected filming locations for this movie. The Blockbuster Kong: Skull Island was shot in various famous destinations in Vietnam such as Ha Long Bay, Quang Binh Province, etc. Ninh Binh was one of the chosen places in this list as well! In this article, I will show you the Kong: Skull Island filming location in Trang An, Ninh Binh, Vietnam, with a special guide to the aboriginal village.

Are you ready to discover the Aboriginal village in the movie?

 

Skull Island Filming Location

When the Kong: Skull Island crew finished filming in Vietnam, they left and cleaned up all the scene setting. They left nothing back! However, the Vietnamese government in Ninh Binh took the chance and restored the filming location to attract domestic and foreign tourists.

 

How to get there?

The Kong: Skull Island movie was filmed in Trang An, a scenic area near Ninh Bình, Vietnam. Therefore, you just need to come here and take the boat tour.

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There are several boat tours daily, so you don’t need to book in advance or book any tour online or at your hotel. You just need to go there and purchase the ticket!

Note: You must choose the 2nd Tour which includes the Aboriginal village 🙂

 

How much does it cost?

You will be more exciting when you know this! The Film location tour price is already included in the whole Trang An tour. You just need to pay 200 000 VND ~ $8.8, and you will get a 3-hour-boat-tour around Trang An.

 

What to bring?

  • A good camera is a MUST! You will be overwhelmed by the beauty of the scenery here.
  • A hat is necessary too. Vietnamese weather is so hot and humid, so sitting under the sun for 3 hours without a hat is not a good idea.
  • A bottle of water is important.
  • Some snacks: You can buy in some area, but there is not many places or restaurants around.
  • Comfortable shoes: You need to walk around a lot, so it’s better to wear something comfortable!
  • Small cash: It will be a nice gesture to tip the boat riders around 50 000 VND. They work really hard to provide the service, so they deserve with all that rowling.

Do we need to bring a life jacket? No, you don’t have to because it is already included in a tour.

You can read more experience on Trip Advisor

 


So are you ready to discover the Skull Island Filming location?

The path

You will follow this path to the village…

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The path is quite long.
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The boat

Do you remember this place in the movie? The boat was used in the filming.
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Let’s discover the boat 🙂
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From one side of the boat
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Here is another side of it!
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The Village

Here you are! You make it to the village!
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The people
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“Be careful, they may catch you!”….

I’m just kidding!

They were super friendly when I was there. Those people were invited for filming, and the government offered them a job at this place. They will be happy to take some pictures with you, so don’t hesitate to ask them 😉

More impressive pictures about the tribe!
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It’s time to say goodbye~~~
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Discover more about Vietnam:

10 Harsh but True things about Vietnam that you wish you had known

Hoa Trung Lake: Off the beaten path in Da Nang, Vietnam

5 Best places to go in Vietnam during Tet holiday

A Complete Guide to Ba Na Hills

Vietnamese Pho in different countries around the world

 


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Why Julefrokost is the best Danish celebration of the year

Christmas is coming with the most exciting and long-awaited celebration of the year: Julefrokost! If you live in Denmark, I guess you may once hear about it. Check this article and get ready for your Julefrokost!

What is Julefrokost?

Julefrokost is a really important Danish tradition. Every December before Christmas, people gather together and celebrate an annual Julefrokost – a Danish Christmas lunch.

Julefrokost can be between family members, or just generally a group of people (friends, colleagues, the member of clubs).

In Danish, Jule means Christmas, and Frokost means lunch. However, the time of the party may depend on the host, and usually, it starts late in the evening, around 5 pm. It can be considered as a dinner.

 

Before Julefrokost

Usually, people will buy gifts to prepare for the Julefrokost. And surely the host will prepare delicious food and drinks for the participants.

 

Dress code

In the party, the participants usually dress up and wear formal clothes. Men usually wear suits, while women wear beautiful dresses. Some people will dress up as Santa Claus too. The dress code is also up on the host’s rule.

 

What do they do in Julefrokost?

1.Eat

Julefrokost is a combination of Thanksgiving and Christmas, so of course, there are a lot of Danish traditional food. You will eat for hours and much more than you usually do.

You can check here to see how is a proper Danish Julefrokost.

It’s Julefrokost and it’s time to get fat! So stay strong and eat for the whole night! 

 

2. Drink

The participants may be asked to bring their own drinks and also drinks for others. It can include beers, cocktails, beverages, or whatever you want to bring.

The most important drinks in Julefrokost is snaps.

Snaps is a small shot of drink and people drink it during eating. It’s 32% ~ 40% alcohol. You can read more at Wikipedia

In my perception, snaps tastes like a combination between water, apple juice, and vodka.

“Everyone doesn’t like it but they still drink it”

“It doesn’t taste good, but it’s the tradition so everyone will drink snaps.”

Many Danes do not like snaps, but they still drink it because it is an important part of Danish culture.

This is what a Julefrokost meal looks like

3. Sing

When they drink snaps, they will sing snaps song. The name of the song is “Haps haps haps”

You can check out the song here!

 

4. Talk

Julefrokost is also a time for everyone to gather and talk. People usually look back and talk about what they have done during this year. If you celebrate with your company, it’s a great time to get to know more about your colleagues and build a good relationship.

 

5. Dance

Yes! As other parties, Julefrokost cannot miss a dance floor.

 

6. Game

There are some games in the party. It might be drinking game such as beer pong.

However, the most and common game in Julefrokost is PAKKELEG, which is a gift game.

Rules: It can depend on each party but generally it follows

Each person brings a small gift and all gifts are placed in the middle of the table.

1st round: Everyone takes turns in rolling the dice and when you roll a 6, you can choose a gift until all gifts have been taken.

2nd round: You rolls a dice and can take other people’s gift if you can roll a 6.

After a period of time, everybody opens their gifts. Some people will have no gift while some may have more than one. In my case, I, unfortunately, didn’t receive any…

 

7. Smoke

Many Danes smoke. They usually go out and smoke regularly. It can be the place that you can meet and see most of the people in the party.

 

What happens at a Julefrokost, stays at the Julefrokost

In Julefrokost, especially after midnight, people will get pretty wide. They might do crazy things and behave strangely. Everyone knows that and no one will blame you if you do something strange that night.

Don’t worry, on Monday people will back to the same 😉

 

5 best tips for Julefrokost!

  • Don’t go out the night before. You need to get ready for the big day.
  • You should drink water because it helps reducing hangover next day!
  • Don’t drink too many snaps if you don’t want to be too drunk
  • Eat more than you do and drink more than you do
  • Enjoy yourself and be a bit crazy because it’s Julefrokost!

 

Just accept all the Julefrokost invitations and enjoy the best party of the year!

You can enjoy the most of the Danish culture with it 😉

Skål !!!


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 You can also share your point of views in the comment 🙂

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Goodbye Vietnam…. and Hello Japan

It’s time to say goodbye to my sweet summer vacation in Vietnam and officially finished my exchange period in Denmark. I’m on the way to go back to Japan to continue my 4th year Bachelor at my home university. It has been a great year traveling around Europe and my home country – Vietnam. I will miss everything a lot for sure, but now it’s time to have a new experience! Besides studying, I will travel around many cities in Japan and learn more exotic cultures. Am I ready for it? 🤔

 

What have I prepared?

There are tons of things to prepare, but luckily I have planned things ahead and met my deadline. I have finished choosing my courses, bought necessary stuff for my trip to Japan. Also, I already have a new place to live, thanks to the help of my friend Youko (Yay!) It will be so difficult for me if I just start to look for a place after I get there, and have to buy lots of things for new places as well.

What will challenge me?

  1. Culture shock

The first thing I need to deal with is Culture shock. I will suffer from culture shock again, although I’ve already lived in Japan for 2 years. It’s difficult when you move around the world. Moving from Denmark to Japan is totally different, and having 2.5 months living in Vietnam in between won’t make things better. I will go all the procedures of culture shock again, feeling good and bad all again. The good news is that know how to deal with culture shock now, after moving around different countries and traveling intensively.

 

2. Japanese

Well, it’s kinda a nightmare to me! Probably I have already forgotten everything that I learned. I didn’t practice Japanese for 1 year, so my vocabulary, grammar and especially Kanji already said goodbye to me. Shame on me, huh? I finished the Pre Advance Japanese level before going to Denmark, and now I barely know basic words. So, I will need to learn everything again. I still love to travel around Japan and knowing Japanese is way better.

Back to old-time days with learning Japanese!

3. The Learning

Studying as an exchange student and a “real student” is totally different. All I needed was passing the courses and now I will need to do my best to get A+… Yep, things change if you are craved for high GPA.

4.My travel

Because it’s my 4th year, I need to focus more on my study and bachelor thesis. Does it mean I will stop traveling? Nope, not really. Since I live in a beautiful city, Beppu, which has everything such as mountains, hills, sea, and amazing hot springs, I still can enjoy my weekend by exploring the city and the surrounding area. However, I will need to plan things carefully in order not to crash all my schedules.

A beautiful place in Beppu, Oita, Japan

So how will it affect my blog? Any changes?

Guess what? You will see lots of beautiful pictures of Japan on my Instagram stories, and my Facebook page as well. So if you haven’t followed my accounts, don’t hesitate to do it!

Here is one of my recent pictures from my Instagram!

 

Also, you can expect my expat tips about living and studying in Japan, as well as inspiration and recommendations for traveling around Japan. Oh don’t worry, you will not be drowned with posts about Japan only, I still post about my adventures around the world. There will be tons of posts about my solo trips around Europe and Vietnam, so you won’t be bored. Do you want to be the first to read my post? Sign up for the email and you’re ready!

You can also check out some articles about Japan that I already wrote 🙂

Eat like a local: Top 10 Japanese foods to try!

7 Things you should try in Fukuoka

7 Ways to travel on the budget in Tokyo


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How to use Couchsurfing like a Pro?

So, you have heard about Couchsurfing but haven’t figured out how to make the best of it. Or you have used but not successfully get any host or meet-up. In this article, I’ll give you a complete guide on how to use Couchsurfing.

What is Couchsurfing?

To whom may not know about this, Couchsurfing is a useful travel application which connects travelers and locals. It’s based on the kindness of the host, or the enthusiasm and open-minded attitude of users. Couchsurfing is an alternative way of traveling on the budget because it’s not only about offering a free stay, but also about culture exchanging.

What can you do with Couchsurfing?

1. Staying at a local’s place

Couchsurfing is a great way to travel on a budget because you can save money on accommodation. You can stay at someone’s place after sending the request to them and get accepted. Depending on the host’s house description, you may sleep on the couch in the living room, or have a private room. During your stay, you can cook with your host and hang out with them if you’d like to 🙂

You can save a lot of money by making use of Couchsurfing. Just imagine that you visit Switzerland, you can save at least 30 Euro per night!

 

2. Hosting

If you’d like to meet travelers around the world, why not offer a place for them to stay? I think this is a great opportunity to meet many people and make new friends. Also, hosting travelers is the best way to contribute to a Couchsurfing community!

You can earn 3 months of verified membership by hosting travelers. So don’t hesitate to open your door and share your lives with others 😉

 

3. Meeting people

Traveling alone? No worries! You can meet up with locals or other travelers easily by Couchsurfing! Specifically, you just need to search for hosts or travelers who are coming to town, send a nice message to meet them in advance.

Also, you should public your trip so others can contact you easier. Many locals offer to show new people around their city in the free time as well. So take that chance and get to know more people!

 

4. Attending events

You can search for events in the city you’re visiting, or it will automatically appear when you public your trip. There are several Couchsurfing events such as weekly meeting, discovering the urban area, etc.

Search for events around you 🙂

5. Hangout

If you use the mobile version of Couchsurfing, you can turn on your location and use Hangout function. Just choose “Become Available”, then fill out what you want to do. You can see the distance between you and other, and also what they would like to do. If you’d like to contact them, press “Hello”.

Choose Hangout Now

 

Then “Become Available”

 

What would you like to do? Type and then press My availability

A group of people I met on Couchsurfing in Poland!

 

How to use Couchsurfing successfully?

1.  Create an account

The first step is to create a Couchsurfing account. You can either use Facebook or login by your email. It will only take 1 minute to set it up!

 

2. Upload pictures

I suggest you to at least 3 Couchsurfing pictures on your profile. If you want to host travelers, it will be better to upload pictures of your place as well.

 

3. Add friends

Your profile will look suspicious if you have no friend or just 1 or 2 friends. If your account is connected to Facebook, you can send friend requests to your friends on Facebook.

 

4. Fill up your profile

It’s important to let users know more about you, such as your interest, reasons that you are on Couchsurfing or countries you have visited. Write some interesting information about yourself will increase your chance to get hosted or host someone!

This is my account on Couchsurfing 🙂 Having a full profile will help you a lot!

 

5. References

Many people don’t like to host or ask someone to host if that person does not have any reference. Reference is very important on Couchsurfing because it shows the valuation and reliance of a person. If you just start using Couchsurfing, you can ask your friends to write some references for you first.

Having references will prove that you’re trustworthy!

 

 

6. Host/ Find travelers

Start to use it! Yes, you are ready to begin 🙂

Create a trip/ Host a Traveler/ Browse Events – Many things to do!

 

Is it safe to use Couchsurfing?

Stay tuned and I will tell you how to stay safe on Couchsurfing in the next article!


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Best Amusement Parks around the world according to Travel Bloggers

Do you remember the awesome feeling on the roller coaster at the park? Do you miss having an ice-cream while watching shows? Amusement parks are perfect places to spend good times with family and friends, with various activities to enjoy. In this article, I collaborate with other travel bloggers to share our favorite amusement parks and what to do there. I hope you will enjoy the reading.

1. Canada’s Wonderland – Vaughan Ontario

by Janine Good from Fill My Passport. Check out her Facebook and Twitter!

If you need an adrenaline rush or are looking for a great day out this summer, you need not look any further than Canada’s Wonderland. This ultimate theme park in the northern part of Toronto is the perfect mix of rides, shows, games, food, and water fun.

Leviathan

You can ride the Leviathan- the highest roller coaster in Canada, before feasting on a classic funnel cake of ice cream and strawberries. Or how about buying a bucket of rings to toss for a mega plush prize before grabbing a selfie with Snoopy?

Leviathan

Don’t forget to try yummy funnel cake of ice cream and strawberries

Waterpark

Hot and sweaty? Head to Splashworks, the official waterpark in the complex! It is the cure for the humidity with new water slides, splash pools, and the famous lazy river. Forget your swimmers? No problem! Buy a lovely swimsuit at one of the many boutiques on site.

Events

Canada’s Wonderland really has something for everyone. This year enjoy many planned events to celebrate Canada 150 including fireworks, shows, specialty concessions, and more. Grab a season’s pass and enjoy over 40 rides and the ultimate thrill in the city all summer long.

Halloween Haunt

Heading to Toronto in October?  Be sure to experience Halloween Haunt – Wonderland’s official spectacle for the ghoulish holiday.

Halloween Haunt

Go through corn mazes, haunted houses, spooked up rides, zombie parks, and more. Yes, you get that rare opportunity to play bumper cars with creepy clowns! Pick up a candy floss as you run away from clowns and ghosts. Don’t want to be a scare target? No problem! You can actually buy an immunity necklace to ward off the evil spirits ☺

It’s time for bumper cars!!!

Canada’s Wonderland seriously has something for the inner child, inner adrenaline junkie, and inner scaredy-cat in all of us. You really do need to go. And when there, you seriously need to try the funnel cake… think of it as your reward for enduring a creepy haunted house, a death-defying ride, or just because you’re hungry. You will be happy you did.


2. Disneyland California – the Magic Kingdom and California Adventure

by Allison from Seekingneverland. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

I know what you’re thinking. Disneyland is for kids. Well if you are anything like me, you know that is the furthest thing from the truth. In fact, Disneyland parks might be just as much for adults as it is for kids. California Adventure and Magic Kingdom are always changing rides, dining options, shopping, shows, and more providing countless entertainment options for adults who still love the stories they grew up with. I honestly can say I get a different experience every time I visit.

To give you a quick rundown of everything Disneyland California has to offer, let me tell you what a typical two days look like. Yes, you can successfully see everything in two days, which includes Magic Kingdom, California Adventure, and Downtown Disney.

 

Here’s what to do and see at Disneyland California as an Adult:

a) Downtown Disney:

I always stop at Uva Bar for a few drinks. I love their Phil Collins drink. Then I jump around Downtown Disney checking out any new stores or enjoy some live music at the House of Blues. On Magic Kingdom day, I usually take lunch at Earl of Sandwich. Since they don’t sell alcohol and have overpriced fast food, I step out and spend my lunch at Downtown Disney.

Having a beer at Disneyland

b) the Magic Kingdom

First things first, I always walk in and grab a map then go straight to the Indiana Jones ride for my fast pass. Although I’ve been to Disneyland countless times, I still like to grab a map and explore one land at a time; shopping for new odds and ends, seeing what changes have happened, etc. And Yes, I grab a churro at just about every churro stand. If I find myself tired and needing to rest, I take the train around the park, sneaking in kisses with my boyfriend in every dark tunnel! With so many renovations coming to Magic Kingdom (i.e. Star Wars Land), who knows what exciting adventures are in store for us adults.

 

c) California Adventure

Get there early and as soon as the park opens run your little heart out and grab your fast pass to the Cars ride. I also recommend making a reservation for dinner at Carthay Circle Restaurant or spend your afternoon wine tasting at Mendocino Terrace. Between beer, wine, and more churros, find time to ride the super fast roller coaster, as well as, the Ferris wheel for some relaxation and views of the park. California Adventure really comes alive at night with their World of Color Show. Did I mention their new Guardians of the Galaxy Ride? If you loved Tower of Terror like I did, you are sure to love the new Guardians of the Galaxy Ride even MORE!

Enjoying some drinks at California Adventure


3. Knott’s Berry Farm

by Family Travel Writer, Susie Chadwick from Photo Jeepers

If you’re getting priced or crowded out of visiting other Southern California theme parks, perhaps it’s
time to visit Knott’s Berry Farm. My family has loved having season passes to Knott’s Berry Farm and
visiting frequently. The parking is easy and close, the passes are cheap, there are fun rides for little kids,
and thrill rides for bigger ones. Something for everyone!

Knott’s Berry Farm Tickets

If you live within an hour drive of Knott’s Berry Farm, I highly recommend getting a season pass. With
options for less than $100, the Knott’s season pass is a great deal. Add on parking if you’ll go more than
a handful of times.

Insider Tip:

  • A big benefit of a Knott’s Berry Farm season pass is an early admission on select days. The park opens up to 40 minutes early on certain days during the summer. Check the Knott’s Berry Farm Facebook page to find out when early entry days are.
  • Knott’s Berry Farm season passes are for a calendar year. Don’t buy your pass on a weekend or holiday in January. Avoid lines and get a free visit by buying your pass the fall before!
  • It’s never crowded if you go early!

Must-Do Rides and Shows

Knott’s is great for roller coaster fans! My family’s favorite rides at Knott’s are Silver Bullet (54” height
requirement) and Montezooma’s Revenge (48”).

Time to have fun!

Camp Snoopy is also fun, especially for little kids! Pigpen’s Mud Buggies is always my four-year old’s first request. And the whole family enjoys the Calico Railroad, especially the Christmas-themed version. The Snoopy on Ice shows is fantastic. Everyone we’ve seen has been a high-quality production, and
it’s a great break from the heat and crowds.

Soak City

For about $20 more, you can add water park admission to your Knott’s season pass. The water park is
pretty typical – slides with height requirements, a few splash play places, a lazy river, and a wave pool.
Life jackets are required for everyone under 40” (including infants), and like the theme park, there is
something for everyone.


4. Cedar Point

By Kris from Nomad By Trade. Check out Kris’s Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter as well!

Cedar Point, located on a peninsula jutting out from Ohio’s Lake Erie coastline, is known for its record-breaking roller coasters. Their collection of seventeen coasters (including a couple of kiddie ones) is unlike any other.

Specifically, Cedar Point is constantly pushing the boundaries of what’s possible for thrill seekers and has built quite a collection of mind-blowing steel coasters. Four of their current coasters held the world record for the tallest roller coaster at the time that they opened. Millennium Force, opened in 2000, is still consistently ranked as one of the top steel roller coasters in the world and was the first to break the 300ft mark. While making the trip to the top of the lift hill, riders are treated to stunning views of Lake Erie and on very clear days the Canadian coast can be spotted way off in the distance. When you’ve had enough rides, you can take a break on the mile-long beach or hit the newly rebranded Cedar Point Shores water park right next door. A day at Cedar Point is a must-do for any thrill-seeker.


5. Tivoli in Copenhagen, Denmark

by Ha from Expatolife. Check out and follow my Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter!

Do you know which country has the oldest parks in the world? The answer is Denmark! The oldest park is Dyrehavsbakken in Klampenborg, and Tivoli, which is located in the heart of Denmark – Copenhagen, takes the second position.

Tivoli is a place that you cannot miss if you have a chance to visit Copenhagen. The park is located near the Copenhagen central station and always crowded with lots of visitors and locals. There are different types of ticket, which allow you to enter only, or including all the attractions, or half-a-year ticket. I chose the day pass ticket which includes everything, and I totally recommend to avoid the long waiting line.

What can you do there?

a) Rides

Just like other parks, Tivoli also has various thrilling games to try such as rides, roller coaster, etc.

One of my favorite game – Amusement ride in Tivoli

Trying roller coaster with a nice city view?- Why not? 

b) Beautiful landscape

A nice walk around the lake is a must-do at Tivoli

c) Show

At the weekend, you can enjoy different shows in Tivoli. There are lots of Danes go to Tivoli this time to enjoy the show with their season pass as well.

The Voice was filmed during my visit

If you’d like to know more about Denmark, don’t hesitate to check out this article: Top 10 Most surprising things about Denmark that you should know


6. Ba Na Hills in Vietnam

by Ha from Expatolife. Check out and follow my Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter!

Are you interested in seeing something different in Vietnam? Visiting Ba Na Hills – A little Europe in Da Nang, you can enjoy the European architecture and Vietnamese one at the same time while hiding from the hot and humid of Vietnamese weather.

Believe or not, this place is in Vietnam

What to do there?

a) Cable car

Amazing view from the cable car

b) Le Jardin de Amor

Beautiful gardens are here for you to enjoy

c) Temple

A view of Linh Ung temple 

d) Debay Ancient Wine Cellar

e) French Village

French Village with lots of performances every day!

f) Fantasy Park

Located just 45 minutes by car from Da Nang city, Vietnam, Ba Na Hills is a must-visit-place if you have a chance to visit the middle of Vietnam. You can read more about this lovely amusement park in this article: A Complete Guide to Ba Na Hills

What is your favorite amusement park? Share with me in the comments!


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Eat like an Icelander: 9 Icelandic food to try

It’s yummy time again! In this post, I’m gonna introduce you delicious Icelandic food that I tried during my trip. Iceland is famous for being extremely expensive, but it cannot stop us from trying its specialties, right? Let’s see what I discovered!

 

1.Skyr

I first knew about the name “Skyr” while I was on the plane to Iceland. It was a long 3.5 hours fly from Copenhagen to Keflavík, so I started reading the magazine that WOW air provided. (Note: WOW air provides cheapest flights to Iceland, read more at: How to find cheap flights?)

Skyr first caught my eyes with its appealing flavors with different choices from plain, strawberry, blueberry, mango, etc., as well as its amazing benefit. Not only contains high protein, Skyr is FAT-FREE!

How does it taste?

Skyr tastes quite similar to yogurt, but it has a thicker form. I prefer the one with mix flavor of blueberry and raspberry! It’s super tasty and healthy.

How can we eat Skyr?

Skyr is often served with milk, but trying it alone is also tasty. Skyr is popular in Nordic countries, so you can buy one in Danish supermarkets as well. You can read more about Skyr here.

Skyr – a healthy product from Iceland

2. Dried fish – Harðfiskur

During my road trip in Iceland, I noticed that dried fish is sold every where. You can either find it at the supermarket, or souvenir shop, or fish markets.

I tried it once at the flea market, and still remember the taste until now. I could feel the freshness of the sea with a bit salty, and I totally enjoyed the tastiness from different types of fish. Not only rich omega-3, dried fish products have lot vitamins and protein. You can surely buy it as a perfect souvenir thanks to its healthiness, lightweight and long-shelf-life.

This is at the flea market – Kolaportid. Credit: Ásta Karen Ólafs

Do you want to try it? – Credit: Ásta Karen Ólafs

3. Icelandic meat soup – Kjötsúpa

Having a hot bowl of soup when it’s cold outside is the best, isn’t it? Meat soup is one of the traditional dishes of Iceland, and every restaurant offers this meal. With the tasty flavor from the broth made of the root veggies – potatoes, carrots, rutabagas, and lamb, Kjötsúpa comforted and warmed me up.

4. Smoked lamb – Hangikjöt

Don’t forget to try smoked lamb when you visit Iceland. Although smoked lamb is a traditional Icelandic dish which is usually severed on Christmas day, you can still find it in many restaurants.

5. Flatbread – Flatkökur

Yet another food to try on this list is flatbread, which is made of the mixture of rye flour and whole wheat flour. It is usually served with some butter and a slice of smoked lamb, or smoked salmon. I tried the one with smoked lamb, and that combination was totally delicious!

A nice Icelandic meal with smoked lamb on flatbread and meat soup.

I had this meal at Loki café, which is a nice restaurant served Icelandic traditional food with a beautiful view. The decoration was very unique and the service was good too! I totally recommend this place.

It is located opposite the cathedral

A nice view from the café

Stunning decoration at Loki café

6. Icelandic hot dog

There is a very famous hot dog chain in the heart of Iceland, Reykjavik named Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur, which means “The best in town”. It has operated since 1937, and famous for its lamb sausages. Many famous people have visited this stand, including Bill Clinton (2004). This place is selected as the best hot dog stand in Europe as well.

 

7. Icelandic bakery (Kleina)

Have you ever wondered how people have breakfast in Iceland? It’s very common to get some bread (Kleina), and drink cocoa milk! This was what I had with my friend in Iceland 🙂

A delicious breakfast!

8. Liquorice candy

Liquorice candy is so popular in Nordic countries, and Iceland is not an exception. There are various candy stores in Reykjavik, Iceland with different flavors. I think the taste is quite weird, but many people love it, so try it!

There are so many flavors to choose!

9. Shark meat

When I was walking around the flea market, one seller offered me to try shark meat. It was quite salty, and the taste stayed long inside my throat. Although I don’t support or encourage eating shark, trying it was one way to understand more about Icelandic food and culture.

This is also at Kolaportid, Reykjavik – Credit: Ásta Karen Ólafs

Do you dare to try? – Credit: Ásta Karen Ólafs

Do you want to try any of these? Let me know your ideas in the comment!


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Hoa Trung Lake: Off the beaten path in Da Nang, Vietnam

Hello, my friends. How are you doing? I visited Da Nang, Vietnam at the end of July and discovered many beautiful places. One of those places is Hoa Trung lake, a hidden lake near Da Nang city. One surprising thing about this place is that not many people know about it, even locals. So, are you ready to discover this beautiful place?

How to get to Hoa Trung lake?

 

You can find on Google map: Hoa Trung Lake, Da Nang, Vietnam or type the geographic coordinates: 16.0787034, 108.0568266

The easiest way is to go along the AH1 street and then go into Tan Ninh street. You can find Hoa Trung lake by going straight from this street. Tan Ninh street is still a small street so it’s quite difficult to go, but still possible for a car.

When is a perfect time to visit Hoa Trung lake?

Hoa Trung lake is full with water most of the year, so the best time to visit this lake is in October when there is not much water. During that time, the grassland will reveal itself and you can camp there.

I visit this lake at the end of July and here are pictures from my visit.

Beautiful mountain view

A point view of the lake

On the other side of the lake

 You can take various pictures near the lake too!

This is a perfect spot to see the lake

Around the area

Near the lake, you can find a beautiful rice paddle field which is just around the area on Tan Ninh Street. Also, the area is very nice and not touristic, so you can enjoy the real lifestyle of Vietnamese people.

Beautiful rice paddle field

Located 20km from the North West of Da Nang, Hoa Trung lake is a hidden gem which is waiting to be discovered.  With a stunning mountain view, Hoa Trung lake is truly nature’s great masterpiece.

I hope you will have a great time travelling in Vietnam, especially at this place. You can also find more places in Da Nang such as Ba Na Hills. Where is your favourite place in Vietnam? You can share with me in the comments.


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A Complete Guide to Ba Na Hills – A little piece of Europe

With a stunning mountain view, Ba Na Hills has become a favorite destination for local Vietnamese as well as foreigners. Visiting Ba Na Hills, you not only enjoy nice landscape and cool atmosphere but also participate in various entertainments. In this post, I will guide you to enjoy the best of this place.

How to get to Ba Na Hills?

Ba Na Hills is located in Da Nang, Vietnam. Therefore, you need to fly to Da Nang International Airport, and then take a cab or sign up for a tour. My advice is to put your luggage in your hotel rooms first, then go to Ba Na Hills.

 

How much do you need to pay?

You can get a taxi to Ba Na Hills for 600 000 VND both ways, or you can go by any type of transportation.
The price to enter Ba Na Hills includes the ticket for all cable cars and theme park entrance ticket.

  • Adult: 650 000 VND
  • Children ( 1m – 1.3 meters): 550 000 VND

This ticket price does not include the price for Wax Museum (100,000 VND/ adult, and free for kids), as well as food and beverage. You can read more about the ticket price here

 

Eating

There are plenty of restaurants and food stands in Ba Na Hills. You can also choose buffet for 200 000 VND/ adult.

 

Tour

You can also book a tour to Ba Na Hills. A tour normally includes:

  • Pick-up and drop-off service
  • Buffet lunch
  • One bottle of water
  • Tour guide
  • Ba Na Hills Ticket

I also booked a Ba Na Hills tour for my family from a hotel I stayed. It cost me 920 000 VND/ adult. There are cheaper tours as well, from 780 000 VND/ adult, but I heard that there are more people in those tours. Below are the reviews from the tour I took:

Good points:

  • Do not need to line up to buy ticket
  • Know the way to get to the fastest cable car
  • Save money
  • Lunch is included

Bad points:

  • Transportation: Because it was a tour, the bus driver drove around the city for 1.5 hours to pick up all the passengers.
  • Limited time: You need to follow the time the tour guide listed. I think there is not much time to visit.
  • Food: A lunch buffet was not good in my opinion. There were not many choices, and the dishes were not delicious.

In brief, having a tour guide is much easier if you go on a vacation with your family. However, if you want to have more freedom, it’s better to consider going alone. It was tiring for my family to go after the whole group and could not spend much time exploring. If I go again, I will choose to go without a tour.

What to see in Ba Na Hills?

a) Cable car

Located 45 minutes from Da Nang city, Ba Na Hills has a scenic mountain view with a huge amusement park. In order to reach the top of the hill, you have to take the cable car. The fee is already included in your ticket.

Ba Na Hills’ cable car system is one of the most impressive ten cable car lines in all over the world. You should ask the staff for the fastest cable car line, which was used from 30/4/2017.  It shortens your waiting time, and it only takes 20 minutes to get from the foot of the mountain to the Garden. The view from the cable car is totally amazing!

The view from the cable car

 

b) Le Jardin d’Amour – Temple – Debay Wine Cellar

When you arrive at the station, take a walk to Le Jardin d’Amour to enjoy the beauty of flowers and statues.

 

There are various type of flowers in Le Jardin d’Amour

You can freely explore all the gardens, Linh Ung Temple, and Debay Ancient Wine Cellar as well.

A view of Linh Ung Temple

A look from the inside of Debay Ancient Wine Cellar. You can also taste wine here with 75,000 VND/glass

The French discovered Ba Na Hills area and built several works such as hotels, swimming pools, etc. However, everything was mostly destroyed during the war, and only Debay Ancient Wine Cellar was left. This place was built by French architects and was dug deep inside the mountain in 1923.

 

c) French Village

After that, you can take a short cable ride to the top of the mountain. You can enjoy the lunch at any restaurants, then start exploring around the French village.

It looks like Europe, right?

From another corner of the village

There were beautiful flowers around the French village as well

It was quite dark around 4pm

The village is not too big, so 30 minutes to 1 hour is usually enough for photos. There are free performances on the stages as well.

 

d) Fantasy Park

After visiting the French village, let’s go down to a free amusement park. There are 3 underground floors for games only. There are lots of free games, but the queue is very long to get in. You can also enjoy the massage on the 2nd floor.

These games are free to play

 

Tips to enjoy the best of Ba Na Hills:

  • Bring light: You need to walk a lot so it’s better to bring at least at you can.
  • Clothes: It’s not too cold on the top of Ba Na Hills, so if you are afraid, you can bring a light coat or jacket.
  • Shoes: Wear comfortable shoes or slippers. You need to walk a lot.
  • Ticket: You should book the ticket in advance because the ticket line is very long.
  • Time: It’s better to get there early from 8 am. It helps shorten the time waiting for the cable cars.
  • Don’t go in the summer or Vietnamese national holidays: It’s full of tourist. There are 10 000 – 20 000 people per day, so you will be stuck in the flow of people and cannot enjoy anything.

Is Ba Na Hills worth a visit? Locals say if you haven’t visited Ba Na Hills, you haven’t visited Da Nang. However, if you are used to seeing Europe and want something different, Ba Na Hills may be not your cup of tea. If you want to see the mixture between European architecture and Vietnamese temple, also hiding from the hot of Vietnam, don’t hesitate and just go! After taking a tour, I recommend going alone to explore freely.

So, hope you will have a great time at Ba Na Hills -:)


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The Liebster award

Hey everyone! How are you doing? I gotta tell you one really exciting new for me! I got nominated for the Liebster award for Bloggers last month 🙂

So, what is the Liebster award?

The Liebster Award 2017 is an award that is given to bloggers by other bloggers. In German, Liebster means sweetest, kindest, nicest, and cute! It’s the great way to motivate bloggers for their work, and also help readers to know more about their favorite blogs.

 

Who nominated me?

I was so happy that Elle from Dressing Danishly wanted to dominate for the Liebster Award. She loves my blog, especially posts on Copenhagen.

Thank you so much for the domination. Here are my answers for your questions

 

1.Have you ever traveled anywhere you were disappointed by? Why?

Yes, I have. I dreamed of visiting Paris and expected to much about that city, but I was quite disappointed about that trip. I was there in February, and the weather was terrible. It was snowy, rainy, windy and foggy during my time there. The architecture was similar to Ho Chi Minh city, where I came from, so there was nothing much new to me. However, I think if I go back in the summer with the nice weather, I will have better image about Paris 🙂

 

2. If you could only visit one more country, where would it be?

If I could only visit one more country, I would choose Egypt. Egypt and its pyramids fascinate me with all the mysterious history and culture. I want to observe and go inside the pyramids. Riding the camel passing the desert is on my bucket list as well.

 

3. Do you prefer to travel by plane, train or bus?

I prefer to travel by plane because it shortens the travel time. I usually go very light with hand luggage only, so it doesn’t take the time to get on board.

 

4. Which city do you think has the best fashion?

I think Copenhagen. I remember the first day I visited Copenhagen, everyone seems like a model here! Not only tall and good-looking, Danes dress really well in my opinion.

 

5. Hotels v hostels: which team are you on?

I’m on hostel team. I use hostels mostly because it’s cost effective, and it’s easy to meet new people. Because I travel alone, it’s more interesting to meet new people and hang out with them.

 

6. If you were to write a book about travel, what would you call it?

– An adventure of a Vietnamese girl –

How does it sound to you? As a Vietnamese, it is very difficult to apply for a visa to travel abroad. Also, I’m from a very conservative and traditional family, so it’s not common for ”a girl to go everywhere”- according to my mom.

 

7. Are there any downsides to traveling?

There are a lot of downsides actually, mostly about homesick, missing my friends and family.

 

8. You’ve got a free one-way ticket to anywhere in the world: where would you pick?

I will go to Copenhagen 🙂 I’m in love with this city after living there one year.

 

9. Any nightmare stories you can share whilst travel?

In the first day in Italy, I slept over my bus stop and just realized when the bus was far away from the city. I had to walk 20 minutes to find another bus, and it was dark in the winter.

 

10. What are your blogging dreams for 2017?

Since my page reached 1000 views in 1 day, my blogging dreams are brought more informative news about traveling to my lovely readers, and also get 10000 views per month.

 

11. Where are you heading to next?

I’m going to explore more about my country! I’ve traveled many other places, so this is the time to see more of Vietnam.


Additional Liebster nomination requirements

10 randoms things about me

  1. I’m obsessed with ice-cream (love it too much).
  2. My favorite movie series is Games of Throne. I am traveling around and visiting all the filming set places. I visited the film set in Seville, Spain, and also to Dubrovnik to see the Kings Landing.
  3. Studying few words before going to a new place is always on my list.
  4. I am a mix of introvert and extrovert.
  5. My favorite place is the sea. I like stepping in the river and enjoy the coldness that the water brings.
  6. When I have free time, I usually stay at home and watch movies.
  7. Playing music instruments is one of my hobbies.
  8. I learned some martial arts to protect myself.
  9. Once I dreamed of opening a bakery shop.
  10. My favorite city is Copenhagen 🙂

 

My favorite blog

Since I live in many countries, making new friends is one of the most important things to do. In How I Make Friends In A New City by Page Traveller, Amy suggested many useful ways to meet new people in new places. I think this is very useful and necessary for expats and travelers.


Questions for My Nominees

1. What is the best memory that you have while traveling?

2. What is the most extreme thing you have ever done?

3. Have you ever had something romantic while traveling?

4. Do you prefer to travel alone or with someone?

5. What is your favorite travel book?

6. What is your worst experience on the road?

7. What/Who inspires you to travel the world?

8. How do you save up to travel?

9. Do you have any advice for a new blogger?

10. Where do you think is the best place to go in the summer?


You can read more about the rules here