China, Diary of a Foodster, Dongmen Food Street, Eat, Food, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, The Idea Box, Vacation

Shenzhen Travelogue – (Part 3): What to eat and explore in Dongmen Food Street

What a way to ring in the Lunar New Year with the outbreak of coronavirus, which was bit disheartening. However, we made it back to Singapore before the outbreak came a month later. Despite this, one can’t deny that Shenzhen, adjacent to Hong Kong on the Mainland China border, is an affordable, convenient and fun destination to travel.

Airbnb

Shenzhen’s imposing urban sprawl and cloud-piercing towers can make it an overwhelming destination at first look. Accommodation in Shenzhen is much cheaper than Guangzhou and this Airbnb stay came at half the cost. We were pleasantly surprised that we found this gem which was so much better than our stay in Guangzhou.

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Nevermind that we have yet to explore every corner of this loft apartment. Small M is definitely contented with the interiors.

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The local school is located next to our building and it is not surprising to hear the children clamouring during their breaks.

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The loft unit is expansive and does not compromise when it comes to comfort.

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Dongmen 东门 food street is the place to satisfy your food cravings

Dong Men (东门, which translates into East Gate) is a large labyrinth of shops selling not just clothings and apparels but also delectable food. If you are taking the train, alight at Laojie station and exit D.

Image Credit - Travel China Guide

You will pass by a shopping street before arriving at the food street.

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We were bombarded with lots of street food options the moment we stepped into this place.

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Eat to your heart’s desire. Shenzhen’s local cuisine in the form of beef sticks, stinky tofu, grilled squid, takoyaki, and, for the adventurous, shellfish.

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Pork blood jelly is abundantly popular in Chinese cooking. It was widely sold during our younger days but has since been banned in Singapore due to food hygiene.

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Grilled Skewered Squid stuffed with meat fillings.

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A popular street snack in Asia. Stinky tofu (chou do fu) that has been fermented and smells like it has gone bad. Do you dare to eat it?

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Everyone is no stranger to Taipei Shilin Night Market 士林夜市, one of the largest and most popular night markets in Taiwan. 蚵仔煎 oyster omelette is found here too.

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We know that Tiger Sugar 老虎堂 has garnered a large fanbase in Taiwan and Hong Kong. This is how Tiger Sugar get its name – the moment when dark brown sugar syrup interacts with the thick milk in the cup. Getting a hold of it in Shenzhen without waiting in a long queue is certainly a bonus!

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We are feeling peckish and these local seafood looked really appetising!

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This plate of flower crabs and big prawns cost about SGD$17.

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This tiny pizza store is probably Shenzhen’s best kept treasure. We were initially sceptical of the pizza’s quality as it only cost SGD$2.

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But the queue did not cease and we saw how the pizza were freshly made and baked in front of you.

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It comes with a solid-looking crust and glistening cheese and tastes great.

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We find ourselves back in the queue for a second order even before we finished eating the pizza!

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Also, we settled for this piping-hot grilled fish which this is sure to satisfy any fish-lovers cravings. It looked really damn good. The fish is first grilled before allowing it to poach over a fire in a rich broth alongside other ingredients such as vegetables and an assortment of other aromatics. A big NO to chilli for the kids.

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Hungry for more? You should visit Shenzhen one day!

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Just finding joy in the little things. Click here to follow Katong Kids Inc Facebook Page to stay tune on the next travel post.

All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

Black Sesame Paste, Canton Tower, Chimelong Paradise, China, Diary of a Foodster, Eat, Food, Katong Kids Inc, Photography, Playground, Ruxuan Seafood Congee, Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street

Guangzhou Travelogue – (Part 3): Chimelong Paradise, Canton Tower, Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street Black Sesame Paste and Ruxuan Seafood Congee

Wrapping up our stay in Guangzhou. Today we brought Big and Small M to Guangzhou Chimelong (长隆) Paradise which is one of Guangzhou’s top tourist attraction.

Chimelong Paradise

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We chose a weekday to avoid the crowd and it was a good move!

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The park wasn’t the scale of Disneyland and we thought the some of the rides were too kiddish for us. To maximise our time, we took repeated rides for some of the thrilling stations.

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And they had fun!

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We thought if you’re not hard up to visit an amusement park, probably you can give it a miss. It cost about SGD50 per pax which is quite pricey for the quality of the rides inside.

Guangzhou Chimelong Tourist Resort is mainly composed of Chimelong Paradise, the Xiangjiang Safari Park, the Water Park, the International Circus, the Crocopark, and the Golf Center.

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Canton Tower

The Canton Tower stands at the intersection of Guangzhou’s new urban central and the Pearl River scenery zone. It is the tallest TV tower in the world with a total height of 600m. The bubble tram on top of the tower is a must do as you will experience the best views of the city from there.

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Having a meal at Canton Tower!

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Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street

On our last night, we explored the other side of Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street and found one of the best black sesame paste (芝麻糊).

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Zhi ma hu is grounded black sesame seeds made into a sweet pasty dessert. Drawing onlookers.

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Customers can mix different flavours into the same bowl without charging extra price.

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The street is filled with many eateries…

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We love this place! The street is vibrant, cool and happening. Well worth a visit when in Guangzhou.

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Ruxuan Seafood Congee

This restaurant is famous for the seafood congee served in clay pot. Ruxuan is a Guangzhou based chain, and serves Cantonese congee and other Guangdong style dishes.

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We had one of the best meals here in Guangzhou before leaving for Shenzhen.

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Just finding joy in the little things. Click here to follow Katong Kids Inc Facebook Page to stay tune on the next travel post.

All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

Baiyun Mountain, Beijing Road, Blogger, Chen Clan Ancestral Hall, China, Food, Growing Up, Guangzhou, Guangzhou Pearl River, Shopping, Singapore, Singapore blogs, Singapore Parent Blogger, Singapore Travel Blog, The Idea Box, Travel, Travel Blog, Vacation

Guangzhou Travelogue – (Part 2): Baima Clothing Wholesale Market, Beijing Road, Chen Clan Ancestral Hall, Baiyun Mountain and Pearl River

Guangzhou is safe and suitable for family to travel. We visited the bustling Baima wholesale market and the items were, but not overly cheap.

Baima Clothing Wholesale Market

This wholesale market is located at the Guangzhou Railway Station. You will know it’s the right place when you see people lugging big plastic bags of clothing.

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The whole place was made up of various buildings/malls and basically they are selling clothings and accessories at wholesale prices.

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With such a big crowd, food stalls will inevitably exist to cater to the hunger pangs.

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We felt the weather at 22 degree was warm but still, the locals were out in their thick coats.

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Try shopping in the wholesale markets and find good bargains. New stock arrivals…a common sight.

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The prices are marked up when quoted to you so spend your time bargaining in your shopping spree.

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 Address: No.16, Zhannan Road, Yuexiu District; close to Guangzhou Railway Station
 Opening Hours: 8:30 – 17:30
 How to Get There:
1. Take metro line 2 and line 5, and get off at Guangzhou Railway Station.
2. Take bus Business Line 1, 2, 3 and bus line 5, 238, 290, 301a, 518, 543, Gaofeng Rapid line 25, Night 88, and get off at Zhannan Road Station. Then walk to the north for about 250 meters (260 yd).

Beijing Lu Pedestrian Street

Beijing Road is located in the center of Guangzhou and is probably the busiest street. The whole stretch is about 1.5km so can imagine there are so many attractions to explore.

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Not even peak hour but look at the crowd!

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Big and Small M trying out the Christmas special soft-serve.

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Eating is an important part of Chinese culture. The street foods sold by the operators were better than we expected. Not only they are clean, super yummy as well!

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But street food is the way to go and to satisfy the taste buds.

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1. Take metro line 6, and get off at Beijing Road Station. Leave from Exit B.
2. Take metro line 1 or line 2, and get off at Gongyuanqian Station, and leave from Exit D and then walk to east for about 800 meters (880 yd).
3. Take City Sightseeing Bus Ancient City Line and Xiguan Style Line and get off at Beijing Road Station.
4. Take bus line 10, 183, 190, 1, 219, 3, 541, 544, 66, B8, Night 1, Night 32, Night 36, Night 39, Night 69, Night 8, and get off at Beijing Road Intersection Station.

Chen Clan Ancestral Hall

The Chen Clan Ancestral Hall or Chen Clan Academy is an academic temple in Guangzhou, China, built by the 72 Chen clans for their juniors’ accommodation and preparation for the imperial examinations in 1894 in Qing Dynasty.

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It is situated near to our Airbnb so it is a must-go attraction. We are not big fans of museums so didn’t spend much time there. However, the wood carvings and paintings are examples of super workmanship and certainly present an eye-opener to tourists.

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But it does offer good spots for photo-taking.

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Had our lunch here at this restaurant near to the Chen Clan Ancestral Hall.

 

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While the rest of the dishes were so-so, the steamed fish was fantastic.

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Guangzhou Baiyun Mountain

Baiyun Mountain (also known as “white cloud mountain”) offers spectacular views.

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You can either choose to walk/hike, take a buggy ride or cable car. We chose the latter.

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We spent half a day at Baiyun Mountain not because of enjoying ourselves but time wasted in taking the buggy rides at different points to reach the cable car station. You have to alight from the buggy at one point and queue up again to buy tickets to hop onto another buggy.

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Our advice is to take the cable car from the ground instead of going up the Baiyun Mountain to find the cable car station.

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Opposite the Baiyun Cableway is a food street.

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Freshly made Guangzhou-style rice rolls.

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Chee cheong fun or rice noodle roll. The stuffing of the salty rice noodle roll mainly includes pork, beef, shrimp meat and pork liver.

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A walk in the neighbourhood after our dinner.

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Guangzhou Pearl River

One can not be considered to have visited Guangzhou if he hasn’t cruised the scenic Pearl River. We wanted to try the river cruise where during the ride we could catch attractions such as Haiyin Bridge, Canton Tower and such but too bad we didn’t make it in time.

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But still, walking around the Pearl River wasn’t that bad either.

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What a beautiful Guangzhou.

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Just finding joy in the little things. Click here to follow Katong Kids Inc Facebook Page to stay tune on the next travel post.

All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

Blogger, Growing Up, Joo Chiat, Katong, Katong Kids Inc, Kids Activities, Marine Parade, Photography, Road Safety Community Park, Travel, Travel Blog

Road Safety Community Park at East Coast

The Road Safety Community Park is open to the public. Apart from imparting traffic rules and safety through role play to children, it also brings fond memories to those from earlier generations.

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Since its early beginnings in the 1950s and then after its refurbishment in 1981, the Road Safety Park has taught us how to be safe road users.

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The Road Safety Community Park has has lost much of its lustre but still, it exudes charm from the yesteryear.

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This is the place where we were taught the importance of following traffic rules in Singapore and what precautions to take before crossing the roads.

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And what follows are the mini SHELL service station..

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Bike Air Pump station where cyclists can take a breather and pump their bicycles’ tyres.

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Reading road signs and knowing the rights of a pedestrian are inevitably one of the important lessons of life.

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The VICOM Inspection Centre.

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A beautiful weather and what a way to relive our childhood!

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Just finding joy in the little things. Click here to follow Katong Kids Inc Facebook Page to stay tune on the next travel post.

All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

Busena Marine Park, Busena Underwater Observatory, Cape Maeda, Cape Manzamo, Car, Japan, Katong Kids Inc, Lieta Nakayama, Nago Pineapple Park, Okinawa, Okinawa Fruits Land, Okinawa World, Todoroki Waterfall

Okinawa Travelogue – (Part 5): Okinawa Fruits Land, Busena Marine Park, Busena Underwater Observatory, Cape Manzamo, Cape Maeda and Todoroki Waterfall

Okinawa by far, is one of the best Asia destinations to visit. You can also check out Touristsecrets.com – https://www.touristsecrets.com/category/destinations/asia/

a travel blogging site that gives advice and tips on how you can travel better, cheaper, and smarter so you can explore the world.

Lieta Nakayama is the second hotel we stayed. It was indicated as a 3 star hotel but the apartment was very spacious and all amenities were provided. Located beside to Okinawa Fruits Land, there are plenty of parking lots and it is near to Busena Marine Park.

Leita Nakayama

Byggingin sem hótelið er í
Image Credit – Booking.com

We were greeted by this view from the balcony.

Okinawa Fruits Land and Nago Pineapple Park are just beside the hotel.

And so is the convenience store.

Brekkie on the go for us, knowing that it would be more expensive to eat inside the Fruits Land.

Okinawa Fruits Land

Another rainy day! Out of the 2 attractions, we chose the Okinawa Fruits Land.

The only reason why we are visiting the Fruits Lands was it’s close proximity to our hotel. It doesn’t have much to offer and we struggled to find proper fruits or butterflies for photo-taking.

Probably one of the few entertainments we had here.

Busena Marine Park

The Busena Underwater Observatory is worthwhile to visit if you would like to get an underwater view of fishes in their natural habitat without getting wet.

Before exploring the underwater observatory, we hit the beach.

The water is crystal clear!

We knew it was a matter of time before Small M took a dip in the cooling waters.

There is a free shuttle from the ticket counter to the undersea tower.

So windy that Big M’s hair was messed up!

Fish shoaling in open waters before we reached the underwater observatory.

Kids and adults are all drawn to the fantastic underwater world.  The underwater observatory sits 170 m (558 ft) away from the coast, submerged at a depth of 5 m (16 ft), and offers sights of a sea grass habitat.

The observatory is pretty small and we had to wait for our turn to enter. It was a time well-spent as we discovered a world of vividly colorful tropical fish and beautiful coral reefs.

Cape Manzamo

Cape Manzamo is our next stop, about 13km from Busena Marine Park. We are going to see its  scenic rock formation on Okinawa Island, Japan. It is located near Onna Village in the Kunigami District of Okinawa Prefecture. We had to park and walked about 10 mins to the hilltop.

Many tourists came by to catch this natural beauty.

It was said that the grassy plain is so spacious and beautiful that you might feel like sitting there forever. Quite true.

On closer look, the limestone cliff is shaped like an elephant’s trunk which was formed when a coral reef rose.

These beautiful views can be enjoyed as great photo shooting spots.

Cape Maeda

We continued to drive south and reached the next Cape – Cape Maeda, which is about 14 km from Cape Manzamo.

Map from Cape Maeda, 469-1 Maeda, Onna, Kunigami District, Okinawa 904-0417, Japan to Cape Manzamo, Onna, Kunigami District, Okinawa 904-0411, Japan
Image Credit – Google Map

Cape Maeda is known for its coral plateau located on the west coast of central Okinawa. Popular with the locals as a soul-healing spot, this is the best snorkeling and scuba diving site in Okinawa.

An observatory deck where we can see gorgeous view of the stunning ocean.

Crystal clear water and stunning view of the cape, what more can we ask?

Spectacular and breath-taking landscape is truly a sight to behold!

Todoroki Waterfall

On our way back to the hotel, we discovered Todoroki Waterfall by chance. It lies in the Sukata District just south of the Highway 329 and Highway 58 intersection.

It was about to close in 20 mins and we managed to buy our tickets.

It is not a popular tourist attraction and we hardly find any review in the internet. We thought this is an amazing place to have breakfast (so long as there are no mosquitoes)!

It was a short hike to the waterfall. It might not be that imposing but the sight of it was awesome, at least to us.

Needless to say, scenic attractions are what we were looking for.

Capturing memories for them to remember when they grow up…

The word “Todoroki” in Japanese means to “roar” or “rumble”.

This is a small waterfall but we can also feel the vibration of the thundering water as it splashes to the surface.

A soul-healing spot, we like!

Time, will You please stand still?

Just finding joy in the little things. Click here to follow Katong Kids Inc Facebook Page to stay tune on the next travel post.

All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

America, Big Sur, Blogger, California Academy of Sciences, Christmas, Christmas Markets, Education, Golden Gate Bridge, Golden Gate Park, Growing Up, Katong Kids Inc, Monterey, Parenting, Photography, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, Singapore blogs, Singapore Parent Blogger, Singapore Travel Blog, Solvang, Stanford University, Travel, Travel Blog, Traveler Wifi, Vacation, Wifi Router

California Travelogue – (Part 4): Golden Gate Park, California Academy of Sciences, Facebook, Googleplex, Stanford University, Big Sur and Solvang Village

Time passes so fast, it would have been a year before we complete our US travelogue. We had a magical experience visiting the Golden Gate Bridge the day before.

And we were ready to leave San Francisco, but not before collecting our rental car.

We had 5 pieces of luggage and were told that we had to take a Buick Enclave to fit our family inside..

Wasting no time after the car collection, we hit the Golden Gate Park.

The San Francisco Botanical Garden is a living museum within Golden Gate Park where it houses landscaped gardens containing over 8,500 different kinds of plants from around the world.

A short distance away is the California Academy of Sciences. We heard that it’s a must to check out this discovery centre as by far, it’s an educational experience that every kid will never forget.

The California Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park has three combined attractions where we could explore the aquarium, planetarium, and a natural history museum.

Our first time seeing a white alligator, one of the rarest in the world!

There was a school excursion and many curious kids are here at the rainforest exhibit.

The building just offers endless fun! We spent about 2 hours here which was rather short before hitting the road.

We drove along the Pacific Coast Highland where there are 13 incredible stops on your visit to California. Well, we tried our best but it was challenging to visit every single attractions.

We stopped by Silicon Valley to visit Facebook Headquarters and Googleplex.

Continue our journey and checked Stanford University.

Hit the road again..

We passed by Santa Cruz, Monterey and on our way to Big Sur, cattle feeding on the hills.

Taking a breather and had our lunch before moving to our next accommodation.

Finally arrived at our Airbnb!

The landlord provided instruction how to retrieve the keys.

A big house where we stayed together with the landlord.

The next day, we hit the road again (as usual) where we covered about 450km per day.

Stopped at rest points to have our meals.

After driving about 300km, we finally reached Denmark. Did we hear correctly? More than a 100 years ago, a group of Danes settled in a corner of this idyllic place.

The beautiful Solvang is a city in Santa Barbara County, California. This charming Danish village is nestled in the Santa Ynez Valley that looks and smells like Christmas year-round.

Every spot is so tempting for us to pause by to take photos.

Yummy! We were seized by the delicious scent of freshly-baked pastries.

Small M was thrilled to see the famous windmill!

Solvang town where visitors will see all kinds of shops and bakeries, as well as windmills, which everyone loves.

Just one of their growing up years.

It was a perfect day to sit out and map out our Solvang plans for the day.

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All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

Golden Gate Bridge, Photography, San Francisco, United States

California Travelogue – (Part 3): Golden Gate Bridge

One of the best highlights of our trip to west coastwas the visit to the Golden Gate Bridge, an iconic structure connecting the city of San Francisco to Marin County, California.

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The seafloor features including large sand waves and rock pinnacles.

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A stroll down the bridge can get pretty busy and touristy during the day. We just need to be patient to get the perspective shots we need.

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And this makes her a really happy girl.

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The Golden Gate Bridge is known as the engineering feat and iconic of so many aspects of American culture and history.

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We were glad to carve out the time to pay this iconic site a visit. For both, they finally made a mark on this special spot in San Francisco.

 

 

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All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

China, Food, Growing Up, Harbin, Harbin Flood Control Memorial Tower 哈尔滨防洪纪念塔, Harbin Polar Land, Katong Kids Inc, Photography, Siberian Tiger Park, The Idea Box

Harbin Family Travel – What to do in Winter?

Our visit to Harbin, the renowned ‘Ice City’, located in the south of Heilongjiang Province. This city is favored with beautiful natural scenery and re-living the fond memories of our stay with little ones.

We tried the northeastern Chinese dish, otherwise known as Tie Guo Dun 铁锅顿 at Zhongyang Pedestian Street.

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The ingredients of the stew are simmered to its best in this deep metal pot.

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It will take a while but the finished product is rewarding.

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Zhongyang Pedestrian Street is about 1.5km long and is always filled with festive atmosphere all year round. This is the main street where tourists would never fail to check off their bucket list.

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Harbin means snow, and abundance of it!

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Everywhere is considered a playground for the kids!

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Street food at its best. Don’t forget to try the red sausage (hong chang), bingtang hulu (fruits on a stick, covered in toffee), and the ice cream which never melt during winter.

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The Cathedral of the Holy Wisdom of God or Saint Sophia Cathedral in Harbin is a former Russian Orthodox church located in the central district of Daoli, Harbin City, Heilongjiang, China.

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Harbin cuisine..

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The average night temperature is -20°C and the kids were just loving it. What a rare opportunity to be soaked in such weather.

We blogged our Harbin trip here.

Harbin 哈尔滨 Travelogue – (Part 1): Holiday Inn Harbin City Centre, Zhongyang Dajie 中央大街, Euro Plaza, Mykal Mall and Saint Sophia Cathedral 圣索菲亚教堂

 

Harbin 哈尔滨 Travelogue – (Part 2): Jiuzhan Park 九站公园, Stalin Park 斯大林公园, Sun Island  (Tai Yang Dao) 太阳岛, Harbin Polar Land, Siberian Tiger Park 哈尔滨东北虎林园, Harbin Flood Control Memorial Tower 哈尔滨防洪纪念塔 and Zhongyang Dajie 中央大街

 

Harbin 哈尔滨 Travelogue – (Part 3): Russian Town, Harbin 哈尔滨植物園, Ji Le Temple 极乐寺, Confucius Temple 哈尔滨文庙 and Teresa Teng Music Restaurant

 

Harbin 哈尔滨 Travelogue – (Part 3): Scoot Off to The Wintriest Harbin with Kids!

 

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Cape Chinen, Diary of a Foodster, Eat, Education, Food, Japan, Okinawa World

Okinawa Travelogue – (Part 4): Cape Chinen, Okinawa World, Gyokusendo Cave and Lieta Nakayama

Okinawa is famous for its capes. We drove up to explore Cape Chinen, a well-known beauty spot in Okinawa which is located in the southern area of the main island of Okinawa.

Passed by lovely little villages.

Cape Chinen

Common to find free parking.

It can get very windy when visiting outdoor attractions in Okinawa.

Visitors can choose to walk further up to enjoy the beauty of nature.

It started to drizzle again and we decided to stay under the shelter.

Make a stop at Cape Chinen Park and observe panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean. When comes to the night, it makes a clear spot for stargazing.

Okinawa World

Okinawa World (おきなわワールド) is a touristy theme park about Okinawan culture. The park’s main attractions are a massive natural cave, a craft village and a snake museum.

Okinawa World consists of Kingdom Village, Habu Park and Gyokusendo Cave. Expect to spend about 3 hours to discover the entire attractions.

Much attention was given to the Gyokusendo Cave as we arrived rather late. With a length of about 5km, this is the longest of the many caves in the south of Okinawa Island and the second longest cave in the entire country.

The cave is well-lit and cooling.

A natural museum beautifully carved over 300,000 years. Ceiling of the spears.

The blue fountain.

Within Okinawa World, we also explored the Kingdom Village and tropical orchards.

There are some 450 tropical trees that bear 100 types of fruits like mango, papaya, pineapple and such.

At the Craft Village, take a look on how the locals recycle empty bottles and transform them into charming Ryukyuan glass.

Walk a further in and we saw the Ryukyuan photo museum. Photo-taking in traditional clothing is popular among tourists. Recall that in the past, only royalty and the gentry wore them.

They loved it!

Lastly, the Nanto Brewery opened our eyes to see how they made habu snake liquor.

We had our dinner at the Food Market..

To stroll the tempting displays of food selection is to embrace Okinawa’s food culture.

We really like the way shopping malls put up these cooked food for customers to buy. The best part was the reasonable prices as one can see.

A microwave oven is placed near the cashier for us to warm up the food.

And this was how we settled our hunger pangs.

You need to pay toll fees when driving through Okinawa expressway. In fact, it cost more paying toll fees than petrol during the trip.

How not to make a pit stop when A&W appears.

Big and Small M are fans of American food!

We moved to our second hotel stay at Leita Nakayama. We booked this hotel as it is near to the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium and not expensive.

It was a pleasant surprise that the hotel room was really big and we didn’t realise.

It comes with 2 bathrooms, 2 toilets, 1 bedroom with 2 beds and a living room. Washing machine, dryer, fridge, microwave oven and cutlery are provided.

This is the beautiful view from the hotel’s balcony.

Just finding joy in the little things. Click here to follow Katong Kids Inc Facebook Page to stay tune on the next travel post.

All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

 

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Okinawa Travelogue – (Part 3): Tsuboya Pottery District, Shuri Castle, Umikaji Terrace and American Village

It is more convenient to travel around Okinawa by driving. It was raining most of the time but we didn’t forgo visiting Tsuboya Pottery District.

Tsuboya Pottery District

Traditional houses with red earthenware roof tiles, accompanied by ceramic studios and stores.

Cute little huts showcasing one-of-a-kind mugs, plates, and pitchers.

Shuri Castle

We visited Shuri Castle on our next stop. Shuri is the name of the former capital of the Ryukyu Kingdom.

Shuri Castle (首里城, Shurijō) served as the residence of the Ryukyu kings for several centuries until Okinawa became a Japanese prefecture in 1879.

The place was huge and expect lots of walking.

The castle interior is very clean and visitors are required to take off their shoes (carriers are provided). Interiors of the Hokuden and Nanden are constructed like modern museums.

A replica of the king’s throne and crown are among the exhibits.

Traditional Japanese dance by the boys.

And we tried the traditional snacks!

The most famous and popular dessert in Okinawa is the Blue Seal Ice Cream.

Big and Small M satisfied their cravings after completing the tour of Shuri castle.

Umikaji Terrace

The Umikaji terrace is situated on a hill below the Senagajima onsen Hotel. This place has the romantic feel as planes flew above us while we sight the beautiful sea view right in front of us.

A tiring climb up the flights of stairs to the peak and discover the beautiful views.

The terrace is close to the beach and the sea waters are generally mild and peaceful for one to explore the area.

The waters of Okinawa are so clear!

Tacos restaurants, ice cream shops and cafes literally packed the terrace.

Greece and Mediterranean vibes, that’s what everyone acclaimed after a visit to the Umikaji Terrace.

Umikaji Terrace

We drove further up north and reached the Mihama American Village, which is a large entertainment complex located in central Okinawa. Actually the American Village is not so fantastic but we supposed it is still a need-to-check-out attraction.

There is this Ramen shop outside the American Village and many diners flock to eat here.

Their ramen was one of the best we ever tried!

Our tasty orders, look at the thick broth.

The most recognizable feature of the American Village is the large Ferris wheel.

The shopping mall is not huge but there is this 100 Yen shop which is a nice store to find good items.

Just finding joy in the little things. Click here to follow Katong Kids Inc Facebook Page to stay tune on the next travel post.

All photos, information and opinions, unless otherwise stated, in this post belong to Katong Kids Inc. Reproducing or copying them for use on third party sites without our written permission are strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.