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I have been a chocolate lover since forever. The chocolate section is where I spend the longest time when I go grocery shopping. However, treats from great brands are not exactly accessible and are way too expensive here in the Philippines. This is where SMR Chocolates come in. SMR Chocolates Cebu offers sweets that you won't commonly find at our local supermarkets and they are at the cheapest prices possible!

SMR Chocolates

The Cheapest Chocolates in Cebu

SMR Chocolates have been crazed by the chocolate lovers of Manila because of their affordable prices and now, it has finally come to Cebu.

SMR Chocolates

They have both imported and local goodies. Their products are not only limited to chocolates, they offer drinks, snacks and baking supplies too. SMR even has their own line of cookies and brownies, which are also worth a try. Their stocks run out easily due to high demand, so don't forget to check their Facebook Page for updates regarding what items are available.

SMR Chocolates

If you're a chocolate lover whose looking for treats to stock up on, or if you're just looking for gifts, giveaways and pasalubongs, SMR Chocolates Cebu is always a must visit!

More Information:

Unit 8 Escario Central Mall, Escario Street, Brgy. Kamputhaw, Cebu City

Operating Hours:
9AM to 8PM daily

How to Get There:
Ride any jeepney passing thru Escario Central Mall. If you're coming from Colon or Fuente you may ride the following jeepney routes: 17D, 17B, 14D, and 04H. If you're coming from Ayala Center Cebu, you may ride these routes from the terminal: 14D, 12L.
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Admission fees to different attractions while traveling can stack up and become a major dent in your wallet. Macau, also known as the gambling mecca of Asia, is infamous for its expensive hotels, luxurious shopping centers, grand casinos, impeccable shows and world class restaurants. No wonder why budget travelers feel a bit worried for their pockets when planning a trip to Macau. However, underneath Macau's extravagant exterior lies worthwhile destinations that can be enjoyed without spending a dime. Yes, you've read that right! Here are things you can do in Macau that are absolutely free.

10 things to do in Macau for free.

1. Travel via Shuttle Bus
Getting from one point to another in Macau is extremely easy. Visitors may avail of various hotel shuttle buses that have routes and stops that includes all key locations in Macau. You just have to wait for a bus at a designated bus stop and hop on. You don't have to be a hotel guest to be board the buses, so don't be nervous when you try to ride one. The buses are in pristine condition and with free WIFI too! Shuttle service routes and schedules are provided in each hotel’s website. Another tip would be to ask the hotel staff members about how to go to your preferred destination. The hospitality industry in Macau is surely one of the finest in the world. Shuttle buses are great use for your Macau day trip

2. Go strolling through Senado Square

Senado Square is triangular shaped public park in Macau which is also a part of the UNESCO Historic Centre of Macau World Heritage Site. It is one of the most visited places in Macau because of its old world European styled architecture and historic significance. Another notable feature is the wavelike black and white mosaic floor which provides a dreamy feeling. 

The Ruins of St. Paul has no admission fee.

3. Visit the Ruins of St. Paul

Probably Macau’s most iconic landmark is the Ruins of St. Paul, the remaining facade of the St. Paul Parish which was devastated by a fire in the 1800’s. Due to it being a staple as a destination you can visit in Macau for free, tourists flock here so it could get pretty crowded. Make sure you visit early so you can enjoy the view more peacefully.

Stunning views at Mount Fortress

4. Enjoy the view at Mount Fortress

Located just in close proximity to the Ruins of St. Paul is another gem in Macau that is admission free. Mount Fortress, built between 1617 and 1626, is a fort that is formerly the stronghold for Macau’s military defense. It has since then been demilitarized but still features replica canons that lines its walls. Today, it offers a stunning panoramic view of Macau and is one of the best spots to catch the gorgeous sunset. You can also visit Museo de Macao which is located at the garden of the fortress. The museum also offers free admissions every Tuesdays and on public holidays.

Pay homage at A-Ma Temple

5. Pay homage at the A-Ma Temple

One of the oldest in Macau, A-Ma Temple is dedicated to sea goddess Mazu who is believed to guide seafarers for a safe journey. The temple has beautiful pavilions and halls which are incredibly tempting for shutterbugs everywhere. You do have to buy a pack of incense if you want to light some for the complete experience though.

Ride the cable car at Wynn Palace

6. Ride the Cable Car and watch the Performance Lake at Wynn Palace

Going for a cable car ride is usually pretty costly, however, Wynn Palace offers a free ride on their own version of a cable car, the SkyCab. Again, you don’t have to be a guest to enjoy this attraction. On the SkyCab, you are greeted with the best view of the hotel’s performance lake, a lake that combines water, lights and music for a spectacular show. If you’re lucky, you could catch the show while on the SkyCab, if not, watching it on ground level is just as wonderful. Performance Lake shows run every 30 minutes starting from 12:00pm to 12:00mn.

Pose in front of the Replica Eiffel Tower at the Parisian.

7. Pose in front of the Replica Eiffel Tower at The Parisian

Who say’s you have to catch a plane to Europe to take a photo with the famous Eiffel Tower? The Parisian Macao’s main attraction is a replica of the Eiffel Tower, albeit half-scaled. Taking a photo is totally free but if you prefer to go levels higher, there is an entrance fee for its observation deck.

Venice feels at The Venetian

8. Pretend You’re In Venice at The Venetian’s Canals

The Venetian’s Grand Canals are a sight to see. It’s lined with luxury shops and restaurants that are styled just like the ones you would see in Venice. Spending a long time here might make you forget you’re actually still in Macau. Romantic gondola rides are also available for a fee.

Look at all the free attractions in other hotels and casinos.

9. Casino and Hotel Hopping

Besides the major hotel attractions already included above, there are still tons of things to see in various hotel and casinos in Macau. Every establishment is special in their own right and a visit is almost surely extremely visually appealing. A sample of which in Wynn Macau’s rotunda are a pair of admission free entertainments you definitely shouldn’t miss: Dragon of Fortune and the Tree of Prosperity. The Dragon of Fortune features a dragon rising above the mist with glowing eyes and smoke coming out of its nostrils. Alternating the later is the Tree of Prosperity which features an 11-meter tree with leaves embellished in 24K gold. The tree gracefully spins while providing an illusion of changing seasons. Both shows have an approximately 4 minute duration and are running alternately in 30 minute intervals daily. Note: You can get from one hotel and casino to another by taking advantage of the free shuttle buses. 

10. Sample Macanese Delicacies

Who would say no to free food? Not the budget traveler of course! Majority of souvenir and pastry shops in Macau over free taste of their delicacies. Don’t be shy to try out a few samples, just make sure they are indeed free samples though. If you like some, buy some, if you don’t or don’t have the budget for it, just say thank you and walk away. No one will glare at you for not buying anything. 

Macau, whose luxurious reputation can be off-putting, is surprisingly budget-friendly. With the above list of things to do in Macau for free, you can plan your trip in a way that maximizes your time and money.

More Hong Kong and Macau Blog Posts:

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If you travel by air quite regularly, then you have likely noticed an increase in the number of dogs and cats that you see at airports.

Ever wondered why this is?

Here is everything you need to know... 
Why are you seeing more dogs and cats in airports?

Emotional Support Animals
One of the big reasons as to why you're now seeing more pets at airports is due to the increase in emotional support animals out there. 

What is an emotional support animal? 

An emotional support animal, or ESA for short, is an animal that helps a person who is suffering from a mental disability. 

Unlike a service animal, who is trained to perform specific physical tasks, an ESA provides their therapeutic benefits simply by just being there. 

ESAs being allowed on planes is nothing new... 

The Air Carrier Access Act, which states that an airline must allow an ESA in the cabin with their owner at no additional charge, was passed in 1986.

So, why the sudden increase in ESAs? 

It is partly due to the number of ESA websites that are now out there. This makes it easier than ever for a person to obtain an ESA letter for themselves.

Of course, there are also many scam websites out there too, meaning that people who don't necessarily need an ESA are being given an ESA letter.

Fortunately, this is something that many airlines are now cracking down on. This not only applies to fake paperwork, but airlines are now also taking steps to ensure that an ESA has been trained to handle the stress that comes with flying.

Airport Animal Therapy Programs

Flying can be stressful, and there aren't many people who would disagree!

Many airports try to ensure that they have facilities in place that encourage passengers to relax, whether this may be quiet restaurants, massage stations, yoga studios or anything else. Some airports are taking this further by introducing animal therapy programs.

What is an airport animal therapy program? 

It basically involves airport staff bringing in animals to help passengers with stress relief.

Some airports have an ongoing animal therapy program, while others choose to bring animals in only during peak travel times.

Of course, dogs and cats tend to be the most common types of animals used for these programs, but some airports are starting to diversify a bit...

Animal Support Program is used in various airports of the world. 

San Francisco International Airport
has a therapy pig to help calm people down, while Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport used to use miniature horses to keep stress levels low in their ticketing section.

These animals have been trained to be accustomed to the many different sights, sounds and smells at an airport. Unlike a normal pet, these animals would not be stressed or spooked by the hectic atmosphere at an airport, and it doesn't take long for their calm energy to transfer over into the passengers around them.

While it may seem surprising to see cats, dogs and other animals at an airport, this is becoming so much more common. This is great news for animal lovers, who would never pass up a chance at spending more time with an animal. However, when you see an animal at an airport, make sure that you always get permission from its owner or handler first, before going ahead and interacting with that animal. Learn more about traveling with a pet!

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Are you planning on traveling to Hong Kong and Macau anytime soon? You may want to consider purchasing an iVenture Card to save you time and money. Through an iVenture Card, you can already gain access to Hong Kong and Macau's top destinations cash-free with just a single pass and you can save as much as 20,000 pesos! Amazing, right? Continue reading below to see how you can maximize your trip using an iVenture Card and if purchasing one is the right choice for you.

Hong Kong and Macau on a Budget using the iVenture Card.

What is the iVenture Card?

The iVenture Card is a pre-paid attraction pass that combines the best attractions, tours and experiences in Hong Kong and Macau. This allows you cash-free admissions to key destinations while still being able to customize your travel itinerary based on your own preferences and schedule. Cardholders may also avail of additional discounts to other attractions and restaurants. 

Where to Buy? 

You can purchase an iVenture Card via Klook for only PHP 6638 (3 day pass) or PHP 8148 (5 day pass). It may also be bought elsewhere, but Klook offers the best prices and hassle free booking so I highly recommend you get it there.

How to Use?

  • Purchase an iVenture Card from Klook or wherever you prefer. Choose whether to get a 3 day or 5 day pass.
  • Plan your trip. With the many choices of places and things to do, you won't really be able to do them all. Careful planning and evaluating on which activities you'd like to avail is crucial. Don't beat yourself up for missing a few.
  • Collect your iVenture Card from selected pick-up points listed here. If you opt for a more convenient option, you may use an Electronic iVenture Pass. An electronic pass provides you a QR Code which you could easily present using your phone. You can activate your card through the iVenture Check In Website. Activating is easy, just input your voucher ID and viola, a QR code is now accessible on your phone. Note: Make sure to claim your card within 6 months of purchasing.
  • Make necessary reservations. Some of the attractions require prior bookings so you could avail them. Please take note of that.
  • Enjoy your trip!

Hong Kong and Macau on a Budget using the iVenture Card.

Hong Kong

1.) Hong Kong Ocean Park
      - One day free full admission
      - Free single transfer; you will have to get back from the park on your own.
      - Pick Up Point : K11 Art Mall on Mody Road Entrance
      - Pick Up Time : 8:30am daily; arrive at least 15 minutes prior to departure
      - Prior booking required. 
             - Email:  reservation@holidayworld.com.hk ; you must do this at least 24 hours prior to ensure your slot or else you will not be able to avail of this inclusion.
      - More info here

2.) Peak Tram
      - Round trip ticket; round trip ticket must be used on the same day
      - Physical ticket must be collected prior at the following locations: 
             - Traveleasy Ltd
                Shop 316, 3/F
                World Wide Centre
                19 Des Voeux Road Central
                Central, Hong Kong
             - Holiday World Tours Ltd
               Room 1021, 10/F, 
               Peninsula Centre, 67 Mody Road
               Tsimshatsui East, Kowloon
      - You cannot claim the ticket simply by presenting your iVenture Card in the Peak Tram Terminus. 
     - Note: The Peak Tram will be temporarily suspended for around 2-3 months starting on 23 Apr 2019 due to the Peak Tram Upgrade Project. You can use the bus as a means of transportation but additional costs will not be covered by your iVenture Card.
      - More info here

3.) Ngong Ping 360 Standard Cabin
      - Round trip ticket; round trip ticket must be used on the same day
      - You can add HKD90 (approx 630PHP) to upgrade to Ngong Ping 360 Fun Pass and HKD80 (approx 560PHP) to upgrade to a Crystal Cabin.
      - More info here

4.) Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck
      - Single entry ticket and free WIFI
      - You can proceed directly to Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck to redeem your ticket using your iVenture Card.
      - More info here

5.) Sky100 Hong Kong VR Experience
    - You can proceed directly to Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck to redeem your ticket using your iVenture Card.
      - More info here

6.) Hong Kong Watertours Pre-Dinner Sunset Cruise
      - Pass to a 1 hour Sunset Cruise
      - Comes with free unlimited drinks on board, dinner not included.
      - Cruise departs at the following time and locations:
             - Kowloon Public Pier No. 3 - departing 6.15 pm 
             - Central Pier No. 9 - departing 6.30 pm 
      - You can go directly and present your iVenture Card at the above locations at least 15 minutes before the time of departure to avail.
      - You may chose to upgrade your cruise to a Symphony of Lights Cruise for an additional fee of HKD40 (approx 280PHP) per Adult/Child payable to operator.
      - You may ask to be dropped at the other pier (different from the one you alighted from) to explore the other part of the harbor.
      - More info here

7.) Rickshaw sightseeing Open Top Bus
      - One day pass
      - Present your iVenture card to the driver/conductor at any of the pick-up points. 
      - For routes and pick-up locations please refer here

8.) Noah's Ark Hong Kong
      - One day single entry pass
      - Transportation not included.
      - More info here

9.) Hong Kong City Tour
      - Half day tour of the city
      - Pick Up Point : Central Ferry Pier No.7
      - Pick Up Time : 1:30pm; arrive at least 15 minutes prior to departure
      - Duration : 1:30pm to 6:30pm
      - Prior booking required.
            - Email:  iventure@tripntourz.com ; book at least 24 hours in advance
      - More info here.

10.) Hong Kong Crystal Bus – Afternoon Tour
      - 2 hour luxury bus tour (Lower Deck)
      - One round of drinks included.
      - Pick Up Point : Hankow Road, Tsim Sha Tsui (near the Peninsula)
      - Pick Up Time : 3:00pm daily
      - Prior booking required.
               - Email:  info@crystalbus.com.hk ; please book at least 24 hours in advance
      - You can upgrade to upper Deck with Dim Sum Lunch for an additional HKD230 (approx 1,610PHP) but this is subject to seat availability.
      - More info here.

11.) Cheung Chau Half-Day Tour
      - Guided Walking Tour
      - Only available on Monday, Thursday, and Saturday
      - Pick Up Point : Central Ferry Pier No. 5
      - Pick Up Time : 11:00am
      - Lunch not included.
      - Round trip ferry tickets included.
      - Prior booking required.
                - Email:  info@ilovetravel.hk ; book at least 24 hours in advance
      - More info here.

12.) Tung Chung to Tai O Scenic Tour
      - Guided Walking Tour
      - Only available on Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday
      - Pick Up Point : Tung Chung MTR station (Outside Exit B)
      - Pick Up Time : 2:00pm
      - Prior booking required.
                - Email:  info@ilovetravel.hk ; book at least 24 hours in advance
      - More info here.

13.) Hong Kong Night Tour (NEW)
      Seat-in Coach tour with guide
      - Pick Up Point : K11 Art Mall on Mody Road Entrance
      - Pick Up Time : 5:00pm; be there at least 15 minutes in advance
      - Prior booking required.
            - Email:  reservation@holidayworld.com.hk ; book at least 24 hours in advance
      - Duration : 5:00pm to 9:00pm
      - More info here.

14.) The Art of Chocolate (NEW)
      - Just show your iVenture Card at the entrance to avail. 
      - More info here.

15.) Hong Kong Disneyland
      Add of HKD477 (approx 3,339‬PHP) per adult and HKD406 (approx 2,842‬PHP) per child payable upon collection to avail.
      - Package is only available at Hong Kong International Airport Arrival Hall A13 Beng Seng Travel Counter
               - Working Hours: 7:00am-11:00pm daily
      - More info here.


Have you seen my Macau Day Trip yet? Take a look to see how we used the inclusions mentioned below.

16.) Macau Tower Convention Entertainment Centre
      - Single Entry Pass to Observation Deck
     - Redeem your ticket at Macau Tower ticketing counter by presenting your iVenture Card.
      - More info here.

17.) TKW Macau Tour
      - Macau Tour w/ very witty tour guide
      - Buffet Lunch Included
      - Pick Up Point : Counter No. 1026, Macau Outer Harbour Terminal

      - Pick Up Time : 10:00am; be there at least 15 minutes in advance
      - Duration : 10:00am to 3:00pm
      - Prior booking required.
               - Email:  tkwtours@macau.ctm.net ; book at least 24 hours in advance
      - If staying at a Macau Hotel, you may contact TKW to arrange pick up details.
      - Baggage can be stored in the bus during the tour duration.
      - More info here.

18.) Macau Open Top Sightseeing Bus
      - Unlimited hop on hop off at 10 different stops for 2 days

      - Tickets must be redeemed at the location below between 11am to 8pm by presenting your iVenture Card.
           -Broadway Kitchen
            Broadway Food Street,
            Broadway Macau, Macau 
      - For routes and timetable please refer here
      - More info here.

19.) Broadway Macau Set Meal Voucher
     - 70HKD worth of set meal voucher; you can choose for 8 different restaurants a predetermined set meal.
       - Redeem your voucher at the location below between 11am to 8pm by presenting your iVenture Card.
           -Broadway Kitchen,            
            Broadway Food Street,
            Broadway Macau, Macau 
      - More info here.

20.) Free Egg Tart and Drink at Galaxy Macau
        - Voucher applicable at Beverage Corner and Kung Fu Tea Shop inside of Tastes of Asia at the Galaxy Macau
       - Redeem your voucher at the location below between 11am to 8pm by presenting your iVenture Card.
           -Broadway Kitchen,
            Broadway Food Street,
            Broadway Macau, Macau 

Other Discounts and Promos
  • Airport Express - 25% Discount on Round Trip Fare
  • Cotai Water Jet - 15% Discount on Tickets
  • House of Dancing Water Show Macau - 10% discount cash only
  • Gondola Ride at the Venetian - Save HK$20
  • Palki Indian Cuisine - 20% discount on the total bill
  • Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. - 10% Discount on Meals
  • AJ Hackett Bungy - HK$200 discount on Bungy (Standard & Full Package)
  • Khana Khazana Indian Vegetarian Restaurant & Bar - 20% Discount - Ala Carte Orders 10% Discount - Lunch / Brunch buffet Orders
  • AJ Hackett Skywalk - HK$100 discount on Skywalk
  • AJ Hackett Tower Climb - HK$200 discount on Tower Climb
  • AJ Hackett SkyJump - $200 discount on SkyJump (Standard & Full Package)
  • Harbour Cruise - Bauhinia with Dinner Buffet on Board - Special Price at HK$400 for Adult and HK$300 for Child
  • Jumbo Kingdom Restaurant - HKD 100 discount for dine-in food and beverage consumption over HKD 800 or above. 
Hong Kong and Macau sample itinerary using the iVenture card.

Sample 3 Day Itinerary 

This is just a sample itinerary, this does not fully follow what we actually did due to some circumstances which I will note below.

Day One - Macau Day Tour

Day 1 - Macau Day Trip

For a more..
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There are many holidays in the Philippines. During some holidays though, it feels better to just stay at home and binge-watch your favorite TV shows than to drive to the beach. Especially if you’re the family driver and the travel time exceeds two hours, right? Good thing, there are numerous vacation places in the Philippines you can commute to via bus or other public utility vehicles. 

Let’s focus on the vacation places in Northern Luzon other than the all-time favorite Baguio City. To visit these places we’ll enumerate below, you just need to head to the bus terminals in Cubao (Quezon City) and Pasay. Make the most of the technology available today and do your online research – know the routes, schedule, and travel time to your destination. All the information you would need are available on the bus company’s website. Remember, the best trips will always be those that are well-planned. 

Here are six vacation places you and your friends and family may visit in the next holidays: 

1.) Zambales 
This place is top-of-mind of many people who want instantly think of a quick trip to the beach when they hear the word ‘holiday.’ This province in Central Luzon features nature & parks, sights & landmarks, as well as water & amusement parks. From Anawangin to Talisayin Cove, to Mount Balingkilat, Mount Pinatubo, The Hellships Memorial, and Inflatable Island - Zambales never runs out of offerings its visitors. Travel time to get there from Cubao is around 4 hours and 43 min via North Luzon Expressway.

2.) Pangasinan 
Pangasinan is one of the most underrated provinces in the country, as people don’t recognize it just keeps on getting better and better each year. Among the choices you have here are Hundred Islands, Patar Beach, and the Bolinao Falls. First, to get to Hundred Islands, you may take the bus from Pasay City terminal that goes directly to Alaminos. you can then take a tricycle from the city to Lucap Wharf when you get there. 

3.) Cagayan
Cagayan is a province located in the Cagayan Valley region in the northeast of Luzon Island, which includes the Babuyan Islands to the north. It borders Ilocos Norte and Apayao to the west and Kalinga and Isabela to the south. Cagayan’s capital is the city of Tuguegarao. You’ll enjoy this place if you’re looking for a trip to some of the most historic churches, caves, and cathedrals in the country. Still, you can chill in Palau or Santa Ana’s scenic islands with various beaches, seaside resorts, and lighthouses. 

4.) Isabela 
Despite being the second largest province in the country and the largest in Luzon in terms of land area, very few people would go out of their way to spend a vacation in Isabela. To get there, you may take air-conditioned buses from Pasay in Manila or Cubao to major towns such as Cauayan and Santiago for 500-600 pesos one way. Travel time is around 8 to 10 hours depending on the stops. As you visit, you'll see many premiere destinations with beautiful white sand beaches and islands in the coastal areas. 

5.) Kalinga 
The province of Kalinga is in Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR). How do you get there? Simply take a bus going to Tabuk via Tinglayan. Travel time is usually 3 hours. There are jeepneys that would take you straight to your destination. They say the scenery in Kalinga is probably the best anywhere in the Philippines. It boasts the gargantuan mountains crushing up against one another, as well as the ancient rice terraces that remain cultivated up to now, flowing down their sides. 

6.) Nueva Vizcaya 
Now let's talk about the major producer of citrus crops in the country, principally pomelo, ponkan and oranges - Nueva Vizcaya. Bet you didn't know its Agricultural Terminal in Bambang supplies the demand of neighboring provinces and Metro Manila, right? One place you may visit in the holidays is the well-preserved church of San Vicente Ferrer located in Dupax del Sur. Interestingly, it was built during the second half of the 18th century under the Dominicans and was declared as a National Cultural Treasure. 

Exciting, right? For sure, everyone would enjoy your upcoming visits to the places we’ve discussed, as all of you would be passengers. This means, no one would be deprived of the precious chance to meditate during the long travel. All you need to do is focus your energy in researching and booking your trips beforehand online. Indeed, one of the best things about the country is flexibility in every aspect of life – even, and more importantly, in the modes of transportation.
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Macau is known as Asia’s Las Vegas for a reason. It’s filled with world class hotels with in-house casinos of matching grandeur. However, this reputation does not do Macau any justice. It is so much more than just a gambler’s paradise. Due to its close proximity, tourists visiting Hong Kong usually consider a day trip in Macau. With just an hour of travel time, visa-free entry and plenty of daily ferry trip schedules to choose from, visitors can explore Macau and get back to their hotel in Hong Kong by the evening. This one day trip travel itinerary will explore the things to see and do in Macau other than its famous casinos.
Fortaleza Do Monte (Mount Fortress Corridor)
Fortaleza Do Monte
The Fortaleza Do Monte, built between 1617 and 1626, is a fort located in Santo Antonio, Macau. It was constructed to protect Jesuits properties from pirates but was later taken over by the colonial government for the defense of Macau.

The fortress offers a stunning panoramic view of Macau's skyline, both old and new. 

Fortaleza Do Monte
If you're looking for some history fix, Museo de Macau is also located in the area. 
Ruins of St. Paul
St. Paul Ruins
One of Macau's best known landmarks is the facade and ruins of the former St. Paul Parish which was devastated by a fire in the 1800's. It is located just below Fortaleza Do Monte. 

St. Paul Ruins
A walk down the former church's grand staircase will lead you to dozens of shops selling various food items, including Macau's most famous delicacy: the Portuguese Egg Tart. My love story with Fish Balls in Curry Sauce also started here. Some of these shops offer free taste too, don't miss them! 
A-Ma Temple
A-Ma Temple
A-Ma Temple, dedicated to the sea goddess Mazu, is one of the oldest temples in Macau. It is also believed that the peninsula of Macau was named after this temple. 

A-Ma Temple
You can actually catch a view of mainland China from here. Walk a few meters to the nearby Pastelaria Koi Kei  to find a wide selection of Macau delicacies, perfect to bring back home. 
Macau Tower Convention and Entertainment Center
Macau Tower
Measuring 338 meters from ground level to its highest point, Macau Tower offers the best 360 view of the entire Macau peninsula. Unfortunately, the skies weren't clear on our visit. You can also try some adventurous activities such as Bungee Jumping. If you're not up for that, you can just settle on watching other people take the plunge via live stream. 
Studio City
Studio City
Studio City is one of the themed hotels in Macau's Cotai Island. It contains the "Golden Reel", the world's highest figure-8 shaped Ferris Wheel,  integrated in its facade. 
The Parisian Macao
Eiffel Tower at the Parisian Macao
Just across Studio City is The Parisian, themed luxury hotel, casino and water park in Cotai Island. To bring the essence of the city of love in Asia, it features a half-scale model of the Eiffel Tower (which has an observation deck, by the way), rotundas, endless shops, street entertainers and glorious ceiling murals. 

Stellar ceiling murals at the Parisian Macao.
The Venetian Macao
Venetian Macao
Connected to the Parisian via foot bridge, the Venetian Macao is another luxury hotel and casino resort in the Cotai Strip. It is modeled from its sister casino, the Venetian Las Vegas. It houses the world's largest casino floor. Located within the vicinity is the Sands' Shoppes, the largest indoor shopping mall in Macau. 

You can also have a truly Venetian experience by having a gondolier serenade you through a romantic gondola ride in its indoor grand canals. 
Wynn Palace
Wynn Palace Performance Lake
Wynn Palace is one of Macau's finest luxury hotels. The Performance Lake, their signature attraction, is a fountain show of massive proportions. Be in awe, as you watch a romantic water dance during the sunset. For a schedule of shows, see here. They also have the SkyCab, a cable car you can ride for free regardless if you're a hotel guest or not. 
Broadway Food Street
Broadway Food Street.
Broadway Macau Food Street boasts of over 40 restaurants serving Macanese and Asian delicacies to choose from. We had our dinner here. 
Wynn Macau
Wynn Macau, Dragon of Fortune and Tree of Prosperity
Wynn Macau also offers their own version, albeit smaller, of their sister hotel's Performance Lake, a water exhibition that is on show from 11am - 9:45pm daily. Every show lasts for approximately 3 minutes and runs alternately at 15 minutes intervals. 

Another offering is the "Dragon of Fortune" and the "Tree of Prosperity", definitely can't miss spectaculars in Wynn Macau's rotunda. Shows run daily, starting from 10am-midnight, in 30 minute intervals. 
Macau Day Trip Itinerary
Since we arrived at Macau directly from Cebu City very late at night, our itinerary is a little bit different from a typical Macau Day Tour if coming from Hong Kong.  You may adjust your activities accordingly. 

Arrive at Macau Airport from Cebu

Wait at the bus stop for free shuttle bus
You can ride free hotel shuttles in Macau, to and from key destinations, even if you are not a guest. Make sure to check bus schedules and routes, these are usually shown in hotels’ websites.
Arrive at Wynn Macau

Watch “Dragon of Fortune
Located at Wynn Macau’s Rotunda (10am-12am, runs every 30minutes)

Watch “Tree of Prosperity
Late Dinner

Walk to Macau Outer Harbour Terminal
It’s a long walk, but we had nothing to do, and we wanted to see more of Macau.
2:30 am
Arrive at Macau Outer Harbour Terminal
To save money, we decided to sleep at the terminal for the night. If you’re on a budget, it’s a good idea. But if you have some cash to spare, just get a room.

Claim tickets purchased from Klook at ticketing counter
Meet Up at Macau Outer Habour Terminal for the TKW Macau Tour

TKW Macau Tour
Included in the Iventure Card; You can put your luggage in the tour bus.

Fortaleza Do Monte

Ruins of St. Paul

Buffet; Free with TKW Tour
Pastelaria Koi Kei
Free Taste on Macau Delicacies

A-Ma Temple
Included in the Iventure Card
Macau Tower
Dropped off by TKW tour bus here; end of tour. Watch people go bungee jumping at Macau Tower.
Studio City
Rode free shuttle bus from Macau Tower
The Parisian Macao
Just across the street from Studio City
Venetian Macao
Connected by a foot bridge from the Parisian
Wynn Palace
Short Walk from Venetian

Ride SkyCab
Free even if you’re not a hotel guest

Watch Performance Lake
See schedule here.
Galaxy Macau
Ride Cotai Connection

Go to Broadway Macau Food Street

Get Free Meal Coupon at Broadway Kitchen; Dinner
Included in the Iventure Card
Get Free Drink in Galaxy Macau Food Court
Included in the Iventure Card
Wynn Macau
Ride free shuttle bus

Watch Performance Lake
Shows are at 15 minute intervals
Ride Free Shuttle to Macau Outer Harbour Terminal

Ferry Trip Back to Hong Kong (Kowloon Ferry Terminal)
Tickets purchased via Klook; 10:35pm last trip to Kowloon. If your hotel is in the Hong Kong Island, better choose a trip to Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal instead. 

    We truly had a fun one day trip in Macau. A great way kick-off our 5 day trip to Hong Kong and Macau. If you're already in Hong Kong and have a day to spare, spending a day in Asia's Las Vegas is always a good idea! 
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    Retail Therapy and how to do it in Manila without ruining your budget.

    Nothing wrong if you believe in retail therapy and really like shopping. After all, you deserve to be rewarded, or you’d find life too hard—just know where to shop.

    You work a 9 to 5 job five times a week and had been good to just everyone you meet. Before you know it, here comes payday and the weekend! How do most yuppie like you reward yourself for hustling and being corporate slaves for the entire weekday? You shop. Continue reading to know what this article has to say about ‘retail therapy’ and the best budget-friendly places in Manila.

    All about retail therapy Is retail therapy a thing? If you’ve seen the movie ‘Confessions of a Shopaholic’ by P.J. Hogan, the guilty lead character explained why she likes to shop. According to her, there’s something about seeing a nice thing in the store, picking it up, swiping, then boom, it’s yours. To her, these items “never broke her heart.” Men probably can relate to this feeling as well—only that they have more self-control than women when it comes to shopping.

    Now, let’s look at some studies and numbers. A survey conducted by TNS Global, on behalf of Ebates.com, revealed that 52% of Americas (64% women and 40% men) engage in retail therapy to improve their mood.

    This supports a previous study done by the Journal of Psychology and Marketing. It states, 62% of shoppers bought something to cheer themselves up, while 28% purchased items as a form of celebration.

    There are plenty of places to shop in Manila without breaking your budget.

    Do it in moderation So we’ve talked about how retail therapy serves as a de-stressor for both men and women. While it seems all good, it could lead to an unhealthy addiction if not done in moderation. What makes it wrong is when people shop beyond their means. So, yuppies in Manila need to know where to shop with a budget. After all, it would be wrong to spend every cent of your hard-earned money on material things, right?

    Shop within a set budget Who wouldn’t have Divisoria on their personal list? Well, this place is still queen when it comes to budget-friendly shopping haven. You just need to know where the best deals are, such as Asuncion and El Cano streets for fruits, and Ongpin street for cheap clothes. If you’re after items to buy and give to friends as gifts, you can walk to 168 Shopping Mall or Tutuban shopping center. What they sell are not only affordable, but also made of quality materials.

    For those who say Divisoria are for the mommies and not-so-chic enough, you may head to Greenhills Shopping Center instead. It has been around for quite a time now serving the more upscale population of trendy shoppers. Stores are neatly divided according to items sold and housed inside an air-conditioned building. You can find everything here from bags, shoes, to gadget and car accessories for the mean. Maybe it would be okay for your boyfriend or husband to tag along as you shop in Greenhills.

    Quality is what matters You’ve probably heard of Taytay Tiangge before, from people talking about how many clothes they’ve hoarded on their very first visit. This garment haven located near the New Taytay Public Market in Rizal has been making waves offering items for as low as 40 pesos. Your 1000 pesos would definitely get far! Items are also trendy and doesn’t look how much they’re worth. See for yourself if this could be the Divisoria of the east, or even better.

    Again, cheer up, people of the east! You don’t have to suffer commuting or driving in traffic to get to Divisoria or Greenhills Shopping Center. Just to go Marikina Market Mall. Especially if you’re fond of collecting shoes, you’ll find a lot here made by the famous and legendary shoemakers of Marikina. Rest assured, they’re worth your money because they’re going to last until they fit your grandchild feet, if not forever.

    There is nothing wrong if you believe in retail therapy and really like shopping. After all, it is important to reward yourself from time to time, or you’d find life too hard. Just do it in moderation and don’t shop beyond your means. Visit these four best places to shop with a budget, which we have discussed. Remember, elegance is a way of life, not some brand or designer item money can buy.
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    If I were to attribute my fondness for Korean Beauty products to a single brand, hands down, it would be Nature Republic. My K-Beauty journey began when I discovered their Aloe Soothing Gel, which I still use and recommend to skincare newbies till this day. Imagine my surprise when they announced that they were opening a branch of Nature Republic in Cebu City!

    Nature Republic is a beauty brand from South Korea known for their nature inspired products. Their products feature star ingredients such as Argan, Aloe Vera, Bamboo, Shea, Bee Venom, and many more. Due to their effective and reasonably priced offerings, they have become one of the most well-known and trusted K-Beauty brands across the world.

    With the K-Beauty craze taking over the Philippines, they started opening branches here since 2015. However, Nature Republic's first branch in Visayas, specifically in Cebu City, just recently opened last January 30, 2019. Luckily, I was one of the bloggers invited to witness their grand opening.

    The store heavily features Nature Republic's Aloe Soothing Gel, as well as the rest of their Aloe Vera line. It is their best seller after all, with the former helping secure the brand a place in the hearts of people and getting worldwide recognition.

    The shelves are meticulously arranged as well. There was not a product out of place! Trust that if you need to find a specific product, you'll definitely know which shelf to go to. 

    Sheet Masks overload! Sheet mask lovers will find heaven here since all of Nature Republic's Sheet Masks are available (may I also add, graciously arranged). You can buy 10 pieces of their sheet masks for 600PHP only. What a deal! See some of my reviews on Nature Republic's masks here and here

    Their salespeople are incredibly knowledgeable as well. They actually know what they are talking about. They are also very willing to help you decide which Nature Republic product is perfect for your skin type and which one will target your skin concerns. I enjoyed speaking to the salesperson assisting me. She was so accommodating and patiently waited for my indecisive self to finally make a decision! 

    Their store also features EXO merchandise, perfect for K-Pop fans in Cebu City.

    Nature Republic is not only known for their skincare products, they also sell quality make up and beauty tools as well. 

    Best sellers are highlighted through their own section. This is really helpful for people who are still unfamiliar with the brand. It gives them some pointers on where to start exploring.

    I'm glad we finally have a Nature Republic branch in Cebu. No need to make online purchases just to get their latest products. 

    The brand was kind enough to let us have a shopping spree. Take a peek at what I bought above. I'll make a review for items I'll try out. Some of the stuff I got are for my sister. I dragged her with me in my skincare journey.

    If you love the brand or are wanting to try good quality Korean Beauty products, head on over to Nature Republic. For skincare newbies, I swear, their products are a safe beginning for your skincare journey. 

    Nature Republic's Cebu Branch is located on the 2nd Floor of Ayala Center Cebu (New Wing). See you there and stay beautiful!

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    Due to widespread financial literacy, young adults of today are well aware that the best time to invest is NOW. Studies show that they are spending on investments more than ever, with percentages rising year after year. This is thanks to social media accounts (such as The Bright Millennial) that are bringing relatable financial advice on a layman level. With this strong focus on financial investments, we may miss out on a lot of other worthwhile investments we could be making during the peak of our early lives. Here are the 5 non-money related investments you need to make during your mid-20s.

    5 Investments to Make During your Mid-20s.

    1. Invest in Quality Pieces of Clothing
    Clothes do not make the person, however, it does have a large input in the way other people perceive us. Investing in some basic key pieces in your wardrobe is beneficial. It doesn’t mean you have to throw away your entire life savings to buy a new trendy outfit, but a timeless piece with great quality will prove to be worth the purchase. Just be sure to tailor fit what you buy depending on your needs and what you can actually incorporate in your daily life. Work in an office? Get a nice suit or a blazer. 

    Your skin deserves some investment too!

    2. Invest in Taking Care of Your Skin
    Your mid-20s is the perfect time to start taking care of your skin. By this time, signs of the early stages of skin aging are starting to manifest. Your youthful glow, starting to fade. To keep your skin mum from revealing your true age as you grow older, work on showing it some love today. Provide it with much needed hydration. Find out what works for you and what doesn’t. Use eye cream. Wear SPF. Invest on your skin during your mid-20s, trust me, your older self will thank you for it.

    Invest in Traveling during your Mid-20s.

    3. Invest in Traveling
           St. Augustine said “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page”. The world is huge. This means that your life was not intended to be lived inside a little bubble called your comfort zone. Travel changes you in a way only it can. It can widen your perspective and change how you view the world. You can grow a deeper appreciation for different cultures, thus developing how you understand and empathize with other people. It will give you experiences you will never forget, and you’ll always have a fantastic story to tell. At your mid-20s, you are in the best possible place in your life to travel. You have the income to support it, the adventure seeking enthusiasm to encourage it, the freedom to actually do it and lastly, the energy to survive it. Travel now or you’ll regret later. 

    4. Invest in Your Relationships
           It may come as a surprise but the key to a long and fulfilling life is not money, fame nor success. Studies suggest that to live a satisfying life, you must have good relationships with other people. Researcher George Vaillant, when asked what he had learned from the study, responded “The only thing that really matters in life are your relationships to other people”. So invest on your relationships. Build strong connections with your family, friends and the community. Isolating yourself from others could lead to loneliness in the future.

    You are the best investment you can make during your mid-20s.

    5. Invest in Yourself
    With your stress induced days on top of other priorities, you tend to forget about ourselves. All that’s running on your mind is work, responsibilities, bills, work, did I mention work? Investing in yourself is more important than you think. It unconsciously reaffirms ourselves that we are worth spending money on and that we believe in our own abilities. Allot money to spend on things you enjoy and things you want to achieve. Invest time in developing your talents and skills. Want to get a Master’s Degree? Go for it. Love cooking? Enroll in a cooking class. Want to be fit? Join a gym. There are always more ways to self-improvement and to be the best version of yourself. Remember that the best investment you can make in your life is YOU. Invest in you, if you won’t, no one else will. 

     Investing in money during your mid-20s is great but there are other things in life that are worth investing on too. 

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