Wednesday, May 30, 2018

SSV Day 5: High Seas

Last full day aboard the cruise ship!! Obviously we wanted to maximize our stay in the ship by trying out as many activities as we can. However, the only thing we got to do was to join the zumba class in the morning. Lol. Turned out our schedule was pretty packed. We met up with a couple of people for lunch at Silk Road (which was so much better than the Japanese restaurant Samurai), played Cluedo with my brother at the Activity Center, then started preparing for the Gala Night.

Tired of the usual cocktail dress, I opted for something different. I wore a wool jumpsuit from Zara with a black and white scarf as accent. As early as 4pm we were already at the lobby, all set and ready for the cocktails which would begin at 5. On the dot, the captain took the stage and introduced the ship's top management. We then headed to Star Dining and were served a nice meal of salmon, squash soup, and seafood thermidor. The food were definitely grander than the usual since it was Gala Night.

We watched a show then headed back to our room. Since this was our last night in the ship, we hurriedly packed our luggage and left them outside the door of our cabin to be collected by ship personnel for easier disembarkation on the next day. 

I was quite sad that the trip was about to end but excited at the same time at the thought of coming home. It was definitely relaxing to travel on a cruise ship because doing nothing was perfectly acceptable. Lol. Majority of the time, I was just deciding where to eat and what to do. Would I travel again on a cruise ship? Definitely, eyeing the ones in the Caribbean or the Mediterranean!

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

SSV Day 4: Keelung, Taiwan

Next stop was Keelung, Taiwan! After going through the documentary necessities at the port, we took a thirty minute bus ride to Taipei. We dropped by Taipei 101 to take photos, roamed around Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall, and shopped and had lunch at Ximending. While looking for a place to eat, we noticed a small area in the food court where a lot of locals were eating. Without any hesitation, we went inside and tried to order from their Chinese menu (it didn't have English translations!!) by just pointing at the photos of the dishes we wanted to order. Unfortunately, only around eight dishes had photos printed in the menu so we didn't have a lot of options. Lol. The dishes we ordered turned out to be fine. In fact, they were better than fine, they were great!! I especially loved the pork dumpling soup! Haven't tasted anything like it!

We had to be back at the ship by 3pm so after Ximending, we headed back to the port. It wasn't my first time in Taipei and I've been to those places before but it was nice to be back. I had plenty of time before dinner so I visited the ship's library and watched an episode of Scorpion (with earphones, of course!). We had dinner at Star Dining (again lol) and chose the Western menu. I particularly loved the Sea Bass!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

SSV Day 3: Ishigaki, Japan

Welcome to Ishigaki, Japan! Ishigaki is a part of Okinawa, and is a super laid back city, very different from Japan's more popular cities such as Tokyo or Osaka. We didn't avail of any tour packages and just did a DIY and went to Ishigaki's biggest supermarket Maxvalu! Lol. Everything was already there-- a restaurant, a clothes store, a bookstore, a cosmetics store, a clothes shop, a souvenir store, and a Daiso (where items are even cheaper than the ones in the Philippines)! We had a really nice lunch of katsu, udon, and mackerel, and prices were quite reasonable too!

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

SSV Day 2: High Seas

It was a perfectly sunny day with clear, blue skies so I spent part of the day in the pool area on the upper deck. But if I had known it would be cold and gloomy the next few days, I would've stayed out in the sun much longer. We had lunch at an all-you-can-eat Japanese restaurant called Samurai but we weren't satisfied with the food and the service.

In the afternoon, we watched Despicable Me 3 in the ship's theatre, and afterwards, joined the mahjong lesson at the Activity Center. We had dinner at Star Dining and chose the Chinese menu. To be honest, meals at inclusive restaurants in general were not that good, but the Chinese dinner menu on this particular day was delicious!

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

SSV Day 1: All Aboard

A month hadn't passed since I arrived from my trip to Dubai and I was going away on another trip! This time, it was a 6D/5N cruise aboard Superstar Virgo with excursions at Ishigaki, Japan, and Keelung, Taiwan. This was my first time to be on a cruise ship so I was really really excited! 

We arrived at Pier 15 at around 2 pm, and immediately checked in our bags. The lines were okay except for the immigration which was quite long. Upon boarding, we went straight to our cabins and freshened up. Our room was not bad at all-- we had enough space to open our luggage, and had a nice balcony where we could stay and chill.

The first day was mostly spent on looking around so not much happened. There were three inclusive restaurants (where there were no extra charges for meals), an adult pool, a kids pool, four hot tubs, two indoor training pools, a gym, an activity center (where you could borrow board games), a spa, a library, a theatre, and some Duty Free shops. After dinner, we watched a show at the Zodiac Theatre called 'Love Around the World'.

I had a late night snack at Ludo Restaurant and watched the film Geostorm at the theatre. My first day was a blast but I had a feeling that the following days would be even better!

Monday, April 9, 2018

Kalanggaman Island

Last year, I went to Ormoc for the christening and birthday celebration of my godson. The event would start in late afternoon so to make the most of our time there, we visited  Kalanggaman island in the morning. Pristine white sand beach, clear blue waters-- the view was amazing. The almost two-hour drive and one-hour boat ride was totally worth it! The island was surprisingly very peaceful probably due to the fact that not a lot of people know of its existence. In fact, I found out about it only the night before, when a friend mentioned it. Lol. 

Friday, March 30, 2018

Bali Day 3: Waterbom + Uluwatu

On the third and last day of our trip to Bali, our itinerary was pretty simple-- visit Waterbom Bali (Waterpark) and Uluwatu Temple. It rained so hard that morning, it took us almost an hour to get to Waterbom! We were so near and yet the cars in front of us were hardly moving. That was when we decided to wade in knee-deep floodwater-- our adventure already started even when we haven't arrived yet in our first destination!

I loved Waterbom! The place was super chill, the slides were fun (and didn't make you dizzy unlike slides in other waterparks). I tried all the slides, including the Smashdown 2.0, where you enter a capsule 26 meters up, wait for the countdown, then have the floor drop from underneath you! I felt so scared while waiting for my turn, and even considered backing out! But I saw kids around 10 years old waiting in line without any trace of fear and that instantly became my source of motivation. Lol. If they could do it, why couldn't I? I put on my brave face until it was my turn and was already inside the capsule and could no longer back out. A great sense of accomplishment washed over me when I got off the slide. I felt invincible!  Hahaha. Too bad I didn't have pictures. Would I do it again? Definitely! 

Still feeling the adrenaline from the water slides, I couldn't believe it was time to go. We needed to hurry because we still had to catch the sunset at Uluwatu Temple. We arrived just in time, if we had arrived 10 minutes later, we would miss it. Aside from the wonderful views, another thing to love about Uluwatu was the abundance of monkeys! I love monkeys and I even had a personal encounter with one of them! On our way back to the car, I felt a weight on my slipper, when I turned to look, a huge monkey was trying to get my slipper off my feet! I refused to let go (because those slippers were new lol), so I got really scared that it would try to attack me! I asked help from Ryan and his aunt and they shooed it away. Whew, slipper saved! 

After sunset, we visited some outlet stores in Uluwatu area, mostly selling swimwear brands like Roxy, Quicksilver, Billabong, Rip Curl, and dropped by a popular souvenir shop called Krisna for some last minute shopping.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Bali Day 2: Ubud + Seminyak

The Balinese cooking class started with a tour at their local market. The cook showed us different vegetables and spices regularly being used in cooking. We were then grouped in pairs and were instructed step by step on how to prepare local Balinese dishes.

After the cooking class, we headed back to Seminyak for a Balinese massage. Prior to the trip, I searched for the best spas online and found that Bodyworks Spa had one of the highest ratings. It definitely didn't disappoint! In fact, the massage I had there was the best I've ever gotten! Before we knew it, it was almost sunset, so we headed to the beach to enjoy the view.

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