Monday, April 29, 2019

2D1N Staff Retreat at Bintan Spa Villa Beach Resort - Day 2

Day 2 into our 2D1N Bintan Spa Villa Beach Resort Staff Retreat.

5:30am - I woke up at 5am attempting to catch the sun rise with some of my colleagues. The sky and waters were deep blue and it looks just as pretty.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

2D1N Staff Retreat at Bintan Spa Villa Beach Resort - Day 1

It was my first trip to Bintan, and our first departmental staff retreat overseas with my lovely colleagues. Was looking forward to the trip to have some 'me' time, to enjoy the food, the sun, and the beach. The last time I took a ferry to Batam was 9 years ago and ever since then I have not been to the islands of Indonesia.

6am - I arrived a little too early at Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal. Thankfully Killiney Kopitiam is opened from 6am to 8pm, hence we can sit in for breakfast before sailing off.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Taiwan Trip Day 4 - Sun Moon Lake (日月潭) | Ferry Ride | Qinglong Mountain Trail | Ci'En Pagoda

4 December 2018

I think we were very ambitious to try to complete what we would like to do in Sun Moon Lake in ONE day. It is amazing how well it turns out to be when we looked back. The lovely weather definitely helped us through our walks and rides.

Part 2 of Day 4 @ Sun Moon Lake
1) Boat Ride from Shuishe to XuanGuang Pier
2) Ah Ma Tea Leaf Egg (金盆阿嬷香菇茶葉蛋)
3) Qing Long Mountain Trail (青龙山步道)
4) Ci'en Pagoda Hiking Trail (慈恩塔步道)
5) Ci'en Pagoda (慈恩塔)
6) Xuanzang Temple (玄奘寺)

Sunday, April 21, 2019

A&W Root Beer & Waffle @ Paradigm Mall [JB]

A&W - a taste I remember fondly through my growing years. It was quite sad to see the American fast-food chain pull out of Singapore back in 2003, but am happy to see it coming back strong at Jewel Changi Airport. Long queues were formed since its opening with news stating at least a 2 hours wait for your orders. This phenomenon may take a few more weeks or months to wind down, hence in the meantime, if you are craving for curly fries, root beer float, burger or waffle ice-cream, you may want to consider checking out the A&W outlet in Paradigm Mall (Johor Bahru) if you are already traveling there for a staycation.

Still remember A&W's mascot? Rooty the Root Bear in his bright orange top to welcome its guests.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Breakfast at Gerai MFR - Bukit Chagar [JB]

Many times to avoid the jam on the causeway, we will start driving in as early as 5ish in the morning. Crossing the custom and reaching Johor Bahru before 7am is a norm. Thankfully there are a few shops already opened for breakfast to fill our empty stomach.

Near to JB CIQ is a stall selling delicious roti prata and nasi lemak. We have been there once in 2013 and it has been so many years since we re-visited! We often drive pass this stall on our drive back to Singapore but did not stop by. Not too sure if Gerai MFR is the name of the stall but it seems to be more commonly known as Roti Prata at Bukit Chagar. You won't miss the big yellow signboard and long queues started to form in the early mornings as well as during lunch hours.

We arrived at 6:40am and the owners of the stall are still kneading the prata dough and making preparations to start the day.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Cheotnun Korean Dessert Cafe @ JP Perdana [JB]

Singapore or Malaysia... weather is really HOT all year round. Hence, we really enjoy having a cooling dessert in between our meals. Cheotnun Korean Dessert Cafe (2nd outlet) was opened in JP Perdana in the 3rd quarter of 2018. The other shop is in Kim Teng Park which is much further ahead from City Square JB. Both outlets seems a little inconvenient to get to and its easier to take a cab/grab to get to both outlets.

Cheotnun Korean Dessert Cafe (JP Branch)

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Authentic Ramen Dining at Tabushi - Taman Mount Austin [JB]

Japanese cuisine has always been one of our favourite food and it is a delight to find a restaurant in Taman Mount Austin that strikes a balance in terms of price, taste and comfort. Ramen Dining Tabushi has multiple branches in Japan and its first branch in Mount Austin (JB). Tucked at a corner shop (along the road) not too far from Prince33 Hotel, it offers diners assorted choices of ramen on their menu. If you like a taste of authentic ramen straight from Japan, you may like to give this a try.

We ordered 4 different sets to try out their ramen as well as rice set. Overall we find the food delicious and appetizing. The pork bone soup broth is rich, thick and aromatic which blends in nicely with the chewy texture of the ramen.

Ramen Gyoza Set - RM28

Friday, April 12, 2019

Taiwan Trip Day 4 - Sun Moon Lake (日月潭) | Sun Rise | Cycling

4 December 2018

Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), located in the mountains of Nantou, is Taiwan's largest natural lake. Divided by Lalu Island, it got its name as the eastern side of the lake resembles the sun while the west side looks like the crescent moon. There are so many activities you can do in Sun Moon Lake and we managed to cover our top 7 activities all in ONE day!

1) Sun rise at Sun Moon Lake
2) Cycling around Sun Moon Lake
3) Boat tour (Shuishe, Ita Thao, Xuanguang Temple)
4) Ci-En Pagoda
5) Ita Thao Food Street
6) Sun Moon Lake Ropeway
7) Sunset at Wenwu Temple


6:10am - Staying overnight at Sun Moon Lake is a must as we wanted to watch the beautiful sun rising above the mountains against the turquoise blue lake. We woke up early in the morning and walked to secure a spot by the lake. According to the locals, this is one of the spot where you can see the sunrise. 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Taiwan Trip Day 3 - Nantou (南投) | Jiji Train Station | Che Cheng | The Grove Experience Factory | 明潭茶老爸

3 December 2018 (Part II)

Day 3 (Part 2) - Taiwan Itinerary (Nantou)
1) Jiji Train Station (集集火车站)
2) Che Cheng Train Station (車埕火车站)
3) The Grove Experience Factory (車埕林班道)
4) Sunset View & Ice-cream (水里二坪枝仔冰)
5) Check-in Blue Sky Bay B&B (Sun Moon Lake)
6) Dinner at 明潭茶老爸

3:05am - We are very blessed to have an experienced driver who happens to be a licensed tour guide to take us on our trip. Apart from helping us to look through our planned route, taking us to places that are less traveled by tourists, he went the extra mile to check the train departure timings, making sure we are able to catch the ride on time.

He suggested that we take the Jiji Line (集集線), a short train ride from Jiji (集集) to (車埕) to have a glimpse of the historical towns and tranquil countryside as the train chugs its way through.