Posts for Asia Category

10 Things you must do in Thailand

Thailand - Ross French - August 5, 2020

Thailand Vacation

Thailand is one of the most preferred tourist locations in the world. One can easily spend a lifetime, here in Thailand. You will fall short of days on your Thailand vacation, no matter how long the itinerary assures. That is why they say, one trip is not enough to completely soak into the beauty of Thailand.

A happening nightlife to soothing beaches, Thailand has everything to offer you. The ruins of ancient kingdoms tell you the history that the small piece of land bears. The jungles echo the sound of nature. Your Thailand vacation will be full of surprises. Thailand has a unique culinary skill that is induced within its people and culture. Thai food is something to die for. The best part is, all these you get without draining out a lot, Thailand is best for budget travelers as well. Continue Reading

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10 Thai Dishes You Must Taste If You Are in Thailand

Thailand - Ross French - July 16, 2020

Thai Dishes

Traveling is therapy, and so is food. The pleasure of exploring local food and experimenting with new dishes is beyond comparison. If you are planning to visit Thailand on your next vacation, get ready for culinary exploration. Thai dishes are famous worldwide. But Everywhere you look, you will see the Street Food in Thailand for tourists. The Thai dishes available on the streets are the yummiest.

Thai cuisine has a significant influence from the food culture of the neighboring countries. Thai food history is as intriguing as the dishes that they have to offer you. They learned the use of spice from the Indians. Some Thai dishes have originated from China. Some have a western influence on them. Thai cuisine has made its way to the world’s busiest cities. Almost every big city has restaurants with Thai cuisine on their menu.

The street food in Thailand has become very popular among travelers. From ready-to-eat meals to drinks to snacks, the streets of Thailand are always bustling with hawkers and vendors. All the famous Thai dishes are available on the road. Checking them out has become one of the popular activities for travelers.

10 Thai Dishes You Must Taste without Fail

Here are a few Thai dishes that you must try when you are visiting Thailand. Remember, the streets of Thailand have a lot to offer, the more you dive in, the more satisfying the experience will be.

1. Som Tam

One of the healthiest in the Thai food list, Som Tam, is a delicious Green Papaya Salad. The salad tastes sweet, sour, hot, and salty all at once, although the hotness quotient might seem a tad bit heavy for a non-Thai palate. Som Tam is one of the essential salads in Thai cuisine, especially in Laos and northeastern Thailand. Thai people often consume this salad as a casual light dinner or even during lunch or brunch.

2. Tom Yum Goong

If you are in love with shrimp, you cannot leave Thailand without tasting the yummiest Tom Yum Goong. It has become quite popular in recent times. Originating from the classic broth, Tom Yum Goong or a Thai Shrimp soup is one of the most popular Thai dishes. It has branched out to different varieties. However, lemongrass, galangal, chilies, kaffir lime leaves, are some necessary ingredients in addition to shrimps.

3. Pla Pao

If fish soothes your appetite, then Pla Pao will be your favorite among the Thai Dishes. Pla Pao or Thai Grilled Fish is a stuffed whole fish, grilled to serve you hot. The stuffing is generally done with kaffir lime leaves and lemongrass. The stuffed fish is then grilled over charcoal. Pla Pao tastes best when served with chili garlic sauce.

Authentic Thai Dishes to Try

4. Boat Noodles

Traditional Thai food recipes are not just delicious but are also very addictive. Thai boat noodles top the list when experiencing the explosion of flavors in a simple dish. There are two versions of Boat Noodles. The pork-based version is called Kuay Tewo Reua Moo and the beef-based version called Kuay Teow Reua Neua. With additional toppings of fried pork, the after taste of Boat Noodles will remain forever.

5. Pad Ka Prao

Walk down a random Thai street, and you will see a Pad Ka Prao corner filled with street food lovers. You can make your customized Pad Ka Prao with a meat of your choice stir-fried with an overpowering smell of holy basil. A dash of garlic and chilies is all we need to make Pad Ka Prao one of our top favorites in Thai cuisine.

Heritage Thai Dishes:

6. Goong Pad Sataw

The famous Thai dish, Goong Pad Sataw, is made with stink beans and shrimp. Almost all the rice and curry stalls will have Goong Pad Sataw on their menu. Stir-fried stink beans and shrimp with chili paste is a natural competitor in your top favorite Thai dishes.

7. Hor Mok

It is a type of fish curry custard popular among the locals. Hor Mok or Steamed Thai Fish custard is a tricky dish, and if gone wrong will not suit your taste buds. Hor Mok is cooked in banana leaves. Galangal and thick coconut cream are two critical ingredients of Hor Mok. You will get Hor Mok in almost all rice and curry stalls.

Famous Thai Dishes:

8. Boo Pad Pongari

Boo Pad Pongari or Thai Crab curry is one of the most unique Thai dishes available on the streets of Thailand. The yellow Thai curry is delicious and is one the lower side of the usage of spices. You can also taste the same dish with chicken and squid if you wish to avoid crabs. However, if you ask about personal recommendations, try them with crab.

9. Nam Prik Kapi

Nam Prik is Thai chili dipping sauce, and the best variety is Nam Prik Kapi. Of all Thai Chilli Sauces, Nam Prik Kapi has made its way to become the most popular chili dipping sauce. The shrimp paste added here adds the twist, making it stand out from all the other Thai chili sauces.

Thai Dishes and Sauces

10. Sai krok Issan

Sai Krok Issan or fermented sausages are made with pork and rice. It originates from Northeastern Thailand and is one of the popular snacks of the locals. It is served with sliced ginger and raw cabbages. Some also add chili to the serving plate. It is as delicious as it can be.

Thailand food culture is enriched with heritage and history. Not just that, Thailand offers one of the healthiest and tastiest street foods available all across the streets. Places like Yaowarat, Sam Pharend, Bang Lamphu, Nang Loend, Pratu Phi are famous for street food. Here is complete Thai cuisine information that can come handy when you visit the paradise land for foodies. Thai dishes are going to top your favorite dishes of all time if you are fond of chilies and spices. Thailand will give you an experience of high-end Michelin Star restaurants to old food carts, all in one.

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Taipei Travel Guide

China - Ross French - May 7, 2020

Taiwan is divided into several major provinces. For most of the tourists, you will want to pick one of the following two places as your first destination: Taipei and Xinbei, which is commonly known as the northern part of Taiwan; or Kaohsiung and Tainan, which is known as the Southern part.

While many other options exist, you would want to stay within Taipei for their first trip to Taiwan. This is, therefore, a detailed guide showing your way around Taipei.

Traveling and Accommodations

After getting off the plane at Taoyuan Airport, you would have four options: Take the Taoyuan High-Speed Railway, the Taoyuan MRT, Airport bus or Taxi. You will most likely arrive at the Taipei MRT Station if you intend to take any of the public mass transport.

The Taxi is fairly priced – assuming that you are dropping off at Taipei Station, the taxi fare would roughly be 600NT. If you would like to get to your hotel directly, taxis are usually the way to go.

The High-Speed Rail is the fastest (probably even faster than taxi) but also the costliest out of the rest three. MRT and the bus take the same time, so it would depend on your preference. One thing’s for sure: There are so many English signs in the airport to guide your way. You are very unlikely to get lost.

Once you are in the city, you should primarily use the MRT (the local Metro system) to travel around. Most of the city’s attractions are easily accessible using the MRT, but note that the metro system is complex and is considered quite confusing for many first-time visitors, so be prepared to get lost a few times. You can keep on using Taxi or calling Uber, or hop on a bus to experience the city. Also, Taipei is a very walkable city, and you should be able to walk from places to places if you know your way around. It’s your choice!

One last thing: The rate of hotel rooms caters to all markets and rooms are available every time of the year. If you don’t know where to look, hotels near Ximending and Taipei Station, possibly Wanhua and Zhongxiao Dunhua districts are your safest bets.

Attractions

Many of the biggest and most important landmarks in Taiwan, such as the Taipei 101, National Palace Museum and The National Taiwan University are within the city.

Taipei 101 is the tallest building of Taiwan. It is 101 floors high—hence the name—and the top floors comprise two observation decks. This is one of the sleekest buildings of the city, and the best place to have a bird’s-eye view of the city. After you’ve enjoyed the view from above, you should also have a look at the lower floors—it is a mall with a huge food stall serving international food.

The National Palace Museum is not the same as the one in Beijing. They share the same Chinese name (Gu-Gong—literally translated as ‘the old palace’) and have a similar focus: Chinese imperial artifacts and artworks dated back to the Ming and Ching dynasty. While the scale of collection in Taipei is much smaller than the one in Beijing, this is still one of the biggest collections of Chinese artwork out of the world. If you are into art and Chinese culture, check it out.

Lastly, there is the National Taiwan University, which is known as NTU. NTU is the Harvard of Taiwan. While you may not enter campus’ building (Unless you have been invited by someone from the campus), you may take photos on the outskirts of this historical campus. CD shops, book stores and eateries are scattered around here, so even if you are not going inside the campus, there’s no harm in walking around.

Shopping

When compared with other parts of Taiwan, Taipei is well known for being a shopper’s Heaven. SOGO, atre, Shin Kong Mitsukoshi are just some upscale big malls in The Shinyi commercial circle. In there, you should be able to find all the international big brands you know and love.

Taipei is also known for its underground shopping malls. The Taipei Underground Shopping Mall hosts shops that sell tourist goods and souvenirs. It is also famous for selling Japanese Comics, novels, video games and related goods.

One place you should definitely visit would be Ximending, which is a pedestrian walkway a-la ‘night market’. While the business here usually starts in the afternoon, in the evening, Ximending kicks into another gear. You will most likely find people queuing for bubble tea and restaurants, while the shops sell an array of souvenirs and clothing items. Wallets, bags, accessories, clothes, Taiwanese snacks, and many traditionally related goods that can furnish your rooms, can easily be found here.

As for your souvenir wish list, Food is usually your safest bet. Pineapple Cakes, Tea leafs, ‘pork papers’ (pork jerkies which are thin as a piece of paper—this is super crunchy) are some most sought after items that will satisfy even your pickiest friends.

One thing you might not have expected would be books—Taiwan has quite the literature scene. If you know a friend who can read Chinese, why not buy him a book of Yang Mu, one of the greatest modern poets in Taiwan?

With so much to buy and enjoy in Taipei, why not book your tickets now? Fly to Taipei now with Cathay Pacific.

Food

Even without mentioning, you should have heard about bubble tea by now, which is a variant of milk tea with tapioca balls added on, served cold. You will see people drinking this popular drink once you’ve touched down, as bubble tea shops can be found literally everywhere—including the Taoyuan airport.

Besides bubble tea, you would most likely want to taste some local snacks and food. Some of the stuffs you should definitely try include:

1. Xiaolongbao/Meat dumplings

The term literally translated as ‘small cage buns’. It is, however, not a bun, but meat dumplings with soups inside, wrapped in a very thin layer of skin that’s almost translucent. This item does not originate from Taiwan, but it is very popular there.

2. Beef Noodles

While the Beef served with the noodles is nice, what makes a bowl of beef noodles shines is the soup, which could have taken over 24 hours to prepare. Luckily, you don’t have to wait for 24 hours for your bowl, as Beef Noodles can be found in most of the places in Taiwan.

3. Oyster vermicelli

While the name might trick you into thinking this is a noodle dish, this is more like a soup or a snack. Small pebbles of oysters and vermicelli are the main ingredients. Pig intestines are often added. If you think this is some odd Asian flavor, wait until you taste the Umami flavor on the soup, which is usually based on fish stocks or bonito flakes. You will be pleasantly surprised.

4. Fried Chicken cutlet

We are not referring to the American style Wings or the Korean style chicken nuggets, or any of the stuff you have in KFC. Taiwanese like their chicken cutlet fried and sprinkled with spiced salt, sometimes with paprika. It is spicy, crispy and juicy. In short: It’s finger licking good.

You can find many of the food listed here in any of the ‘night markets’ in Taipei. Shilin night market, Shi-Da Night Market and Raohe Street Night Market are some places where you can start looking.

In Conclusion

There is really nothing stopping you from visiting Taiwan. So what are you waiting for? Book your tickets to Taipei now.

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The Top Most Attractions of Metropolis Taipei

China - Eric Anderson - March 16, 2018

Taipei is known to be the capital city of Taiwan. This is a contemporary metropolis land with innumerable Japanese colonial lanes is popular holiday destination ideas. In Taipei, you get to see the busy shopping districts and contemporary edifices. Make a list of Taipei attractions and start your journey today. There is the skyline and it is crowned by 509 meters tall Taipei shaped in bamboo.

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The List of the Impressive Seoul Attractions

Asia - Eric Anderson - March 12, 2018

Here you can know about the list of the Seoul attractions. This is the capital city of South Korea. Seoul is a Metropolis, and here you can see the contemporary skyscrapers. You can even see the high tech subways, and the pop culture is sure to best describe the Buddhist temples.

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