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Press – Half a shoestring. Liz is a travel and cycling journalist who writes regularly for The Independent, The Guardian and London Evening Standard. She pitches and writes regularly on the road. Her specialities are outdoors, budget travel, beer and veganism. To get in touch about a commission, you can contact her at eliz[dot]dodd[at]gmail[dot]com.

Miranda is an experienced photographer. Her specialities are [nature and the environment], lifestyle and gig photography and her photos have been published on The Guardian and Samples of their work appear below: Like this: Like Loading... Best Korean Temple Food Restaurant in Seoul - Balwoo Gongyang | Kimchimari. Korean Temple Food – Cherry Tomato in Fermented Bokbunja (Korean wild raspberry) Sauce Korean Temple Food was one of those things I really wanted to experience during my visit to Seoul in March. So, I set aside a day for myself to experience Korean temple food and also just to explore the Bukchon Village area. Luckily, Balwoo Gongyang (발우공양) was located just across from the Bukchon Village. After walking around Bukchon Village, I walked over to Ujeonguk-ro in JongnoGu district which is where the restaurant was.

Before going in, I quickly browsed through some of the stores nearby which sold everything related to Buddhism – from books to prayer beads. As for me, I got interested in Korean temple food because it was a new and very unique part of Korean cuisine and was always curious how good the food actually tasted. My visit to Balwoo Gongyang has totally changed that. By the way, May 3rd in Korea is Buddha’s birthday. Balwoo Gongyang – Korean Temple Food Restaurant I guess I am a foodie…

The Man in Seat Sixty-One - the train travel guide... Make Shinshoji Zen Museum & Gardens One of Your Top Destinations of 2017. The Shinshoji Zen Museum and Gardens is a sprawling campus of traditional Japanese structures like tea houses, hot baths and museums all connected by tranquil and beautiful Zen gardens. In other words, it’s your one-stop-shop for Zen meals, Zen baths, Zen art and everything else you need to nurture your body and soul.

Located in Hiroshima, and completed just 3 months ago in September of 2016, the museums and gardens elegantly merge traditional and contemporary design. Architecture The vast campus is dotted with interesting architecture like a 17th century hall that was relocated from Shiga prefecture, a teahouse originally designed by tea master Sen no Rikyu and and newly built art pavilion by contemporary artist Kohei Nawa and his architecture studio Sandwich. Open to the outdoors, Nawa’s Kohtei pavilion acts as a museum dedicated to light. Kohei Nawa’s Kohtei pavilion Art from left to right: “Daruma” “One Eyed Daruma” and “Iron Club” “Daikokuten (Mahakala) with mice” “Otafuku Making Dango” Atlas Obscura | Curious and Wondrous Travel Destinations. China Travel Agency, Small Group & Private Tour Service. Ctrip – Cheap Flights, Hotels, Vacation Packages, Trains.

Jeonju Hanok Village (Hanok Maeul) | Kimchimari. Jeonju Hanok Village Postcard made with recycled paper Jeonju Hanok Village DAY 1 Jeonju, Korea is the capital city of North Jeolla Province. Jeolla province has history dating back to pre-historic times but Jeonju came to existence as a city in 900 AD as part of Later Baekjae era. When I think of Jeonju, I think of Jeonju Bibimbap. That is probably the most famous dish that comes from Jeonju. But recently Jeonju boasts a lot more good eats than just bibimbap and has even been named as UNESCO City of Gastronomy in 2012. The Jeonju Hanok Village postcard you see above is a recycled paper postcard that I found at a store run by young Korean entreprenuers who turn their photography into living art such as this one.

I just came back from Korea from a 10 day visit to see family and friends. LUNCH at the famous 왱이콩나물국밥 Waengi Kongnamul Gukbap (88 Dongmun-gil, Wansan-gu, Jeonju-si, Jeollabuk-do) restaurant which serves just one menu item – Beansprout Soup and Rice (Kongnamul Gukbap). JinJoo. Travel information - The Basetrip. What’s in My Bag — Wayne Ruffner | Cool Tools. Outdoorsman shares his ultimate bug repellent kit I’ve been in a few mosquito-plagued areas enough times to know that the “just use DEET” advice doesn’t really get it.

DEET has a bad habit of melting different plastics, and while there’s no shortage of ways to get it out of a container, there are few good ways to keep it off your hands. But it is very good at keeping mosquitoes at bay. Yes, washing your hands after putting DEET on is a good idea — if that’s available. Also, DEET isn’t the only player anymore, now there’s Picaridin too. So, for either DEET or Picaridin, sprays are good for broad coverage (like the top of your head), but suck at ankles, for example. And, if you’re traveling with this stuff, leaks, though pretty rare, are a miserable experience. So I wanted to see if there was a way to tame this stuff. I’ve been using Aloksak bags for a while now and really like them. Picaridin worked very well against Arctic mosquitoes and the stuff is far more pleasant than DEET.

What’s in My Bag — Wayne Ruffner | Cool Tools. Passport Index 2016 - Compare the world's passports side by side. 12 High-Quality Airbnb Alternatives for Any Budget. With 60 million users, 600,000 hosts, and 2 million properties to choose from, Airbnb really is incredible. But it’s not perfect, either. Sometimes all the properties in your budget will be booked up.

Other times, you may not find exactly what you’re looking for. In these cases, rather than reverting back to a characterless hotel, try one of these Airbnb alternatives. As a word of caution, when using most of these sites, the onus is on you to communicate with the host. Tripping will save you hours of time by displaying results from several Airbnb alternatives at once. Unfortunately, Airbnb listings aren’t displayed on, as there’s no public API available yet, but that may change soon. HomeStay Homestay is essentially what Airbnb was when it started out. Not only does this offer amazing value for money, but you can also experience an entirely different side to a location that you wouldn’t normally see, while making friends in the process. Kid&Coe 9Flats HomeAway Behomm. How You Can Use Social Media to Save on Travel. People out there, right now, are using social media to save on travel.

And while it may seem too good to be true, there are easy ways for you to save some money and travel more. By keeping up with social media trends, applying for the right gigs, and knowing what social sites and apps are best, you too can fund your next adventure with ease. So, read more, save, and travel! Follow the Travel Hashtags One of the best tools to save on traveling is by following hashtags on Twitter. There are many, many hashtag campaigns by various companies that want more exposure.

In exchange for this social media exposure, these companies offer discounted hotel prices, reduced or free plane tickets, gift cards, food, and other travel prizes that you can really take advantage of. For instance, Best Western runs a number of hashtag campaigns, such as the recent #MyWherever Destination Twitter campaign in which participants can win a $2,500 gift card, 5 free nights in a Best Western hotel, and other prizes. Untitled. Although not avid fans of full-contact wrestling, we were determined to view a sumo match during our first trip to Japan.

There were no tournaments that month so we took a very early train ride into a non-touristy part of Tokyo to watch the wrestlers practice at a sumo stable. As luck would have it, practice was canceled that day. Fortunately, our last trip to Tokyo was during a Sumo Grand Tournament and we finally had a chance to view Japan’s national sport.

If you are interested in checking out a sumo tournament in Tokyo, Japan, here are some tips to ensure a great experience: 1) Make sure you visit Japan at the right time. Professional sumo tournaments are held in Japan six times per year, once in every odd-numbered month. 2) Purchase tickets early, especially for weekend matches. We purchased our tickets 10 days prior to our weekend in Tokyo and had a difficult time finding tickets. 3) Reserve tickets online from abroad. Our tickets to the grand sumo tournament in Tokyo Related. 10 Awesome Travel Blogs to Drool Over. At MakeUseOf we love traveling and everything that goes with it. We’ve a team based all around the world, with many of our staff living abroad or traveling indefinitely.

One of my favorite forms of procrastination is to dive deep into travel blogs; the inspiring destinations, wonderful photos, and “you can do” inspirational posts are enough to make me miss any deadline. There are countless travel blogs out there but for this article I’ve gathered only the best. Some of them have been featured in major publications while others are less well known.

Some are for budget travelers who are prepared to sell everything they own while others are for people who can only travel a week or two a year. Wherever you fall on that spectrum, I guarantee there’ll be something in here that will get you drooling. Nomadic Matt Nomadic Matt’s site is all about traveling cheaper so you can travel longer and have a more authentic experience. Alastair Humphreys Alex in Wanderland Landlopers One Mile At A Time. Ancient Korea by Bicycle : Cycling tour in South Korea, Seoul, Namyangju, Yeoju, Sangju, Gyeongju. South Korea - The Land of the Morning Calm - is steeped in contradictions and traditions. Craggy mountain ranges slope down to pristine beaches and bustling cosmopolitan cities are surrounded by serene farmland. Elements of Confucianism, practiced for a thousand years across several dynasties, linger on today, living alongside the innovative economic power of this thriving country. Cycling through the country puts you in direct contact with the Korean people and you’ll find them a real delight.

Fiercely proud, and with a character almost as spicy as their food, they’re markedly eager to please foreigners. We start our tour from the centre of Seoul and thanks to an extensive network of bike paths we can cycle along the Han River directly out of the city into the rural countryside, visiting temples, sampling delicious Korean cuisine before finishing in historical Gyeongju. Uniquely on this cycle tour you'll be able to collect stamps in your souvenir Korean Cycle Tour passport. Exploring Japan: Options for Cheap Train Travel Without a Japan Rail Pass. Jul 04, 2012 Ashley Thompson Editorial, Features, Lifestyle & Travel 5 Comments Someone recently asked what kind of Japan train travel deals are available for people living in Japan, as the Japan Rail Pass and some other passes are only for people with a tourist visa.

Lucky for those of us living here, there are numerous options to save anywhere from a few hundred to several thousand yen, depending on where you want to go, when and how you want to get there. The only caveat is that most information for these is in Japanese. Regardless, let’s look at a few ways you might be able to save money riding the rails in Japan.

Note: “JR” used below refers to “Japan Railways” and “shinkansen” refers to the “bullet train.” Seishun 18 Ticket This ticket might be one of the most well known amongst non-Japanese aside from the Japan Rail Pass. Cost: 11,500 yen. You can find out more about the Seishun 18 ticket, in English, here. “Toku Toku” Tickets From JR West Examples: Shikoku Toku Tickets Example: How to Book a RTW Trip in 2015. Use These Underpriced Awards Around the World. | MileValue. Until 2014, the best way to use miles to book a round-the-world (RTW) trip was to save a lot of one mileage currency and book a special RTW award with those miles. If you’ve saved up miles for years to book yourself such a once-in-a-lifetime trip, you’re probably dismayed that the best two RTW awards from American Airlines and Delta were eliminated in 2014.

You can still book RTW trips in 2015, but now the best way is as a series of one way awards across many different programs to take advantage of sweet spots on each airline’s award chart. In this post, I’ll list some of the cheapest awards, or sweet spots, from each region. When planning your RTW trip in 2015 or beyond, refer to these lists to piece together your trip.

For instance, if you know you want to visit South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, and Australia, look under each of those headings to find cheap awards to the next region. All of the awards on the lists in the next section are from programs with region-based miles. Cash. How to Find the Cheapest Flight to Anywhere in the World. As I’ve often preached, travel doesn’t need to be expensive. Most of the time, airfare is the biggest expenditure on your trip and it takes up a chunk of our hard-earned savings. The best way to reduce this expenditure is to find the cheapest flight possible. After spending the past 12 years traveling around the world, I’ve learned quite a few tricks when it comes to finding cheap airfares. Over the years, I’ve managed to score some awesome airfare deals, such as that Madrid-Oslo budget flight for only $15 return (with taxes included) and an upcoming flight from Oslo to Los Angeles for only $328.

I also just scored a promo flight from Madrid to Ghana for $208 return, and let’s not forget the error fare I booked to Greenland for just $400, half the usual price! As part of my travel tips series, this article is a compilation of some secret tricks I use to find cheap flights. If you apply a few of these tips, you should be able to save yourself some money the next time you book airfare. Temple Surfing in Japan | zenlikeben. Sitting with Jiho, the head monk, and other guests at the Shōganji Zen Retreat in Oita, Japan When originally planning my trip to Japan I had wanted to stay in at least one temple while there.

The thought of waking up before the crack of dawn for a Buddhist sermon seemed both peaceful and poetic in some sort of way. I had heard that you could stay at various temples across Japan for not a lot of money. Turns out temples are no longer a popular place to stay among the Japanese themselves. Ninna-Ji in Kyoto, Japan The food at Omuro Kaikan, the dining hall of Ninna-ji, was simply amazing Temples in Japan are an inexpensive way to experience a entirely different culture and side of Japan. The meals at Nina-ji, for instance, was really, really good. The atmosphere at Ninna-ji was relaxing. The grounds at Nina-ji were beautiful. The next morning we awoke to attend the morning service with the monks in Kon-do, the main temple hall. (More info on Staying at Ninna-ji here)

The Naoshima Art Islands. All photos by spoon & tamago (taken with iPhone 5) Over the summer Spoon & Tamago planned a retreat to Naoshima and its neighboring islands in the Seto Inland Sea of Japan. Over the past 20 years the unlikely location has emerged as one of Japan’s most prominent sites for cutting edge architecture, art and installations that all seamlessly merge with nature. And on the blog we’ve devoted several articles to the 12 islands and their 200+ works of art so we were excited to finally visit. We decided to share our itinerary with you because the multiple islands and ferries are certainly not easy to navigate. We spent a lot of time planning and thought that by sharing our notes with you it would make the islands more accessible.

Travel to Takamatsu and board ferry to Naoshima We took an early morning flight from Haneda that got us to Takamatsu airport by 9AM. Check-in, unload and explore A shuttle at the port picked us up and took us to the Benesse House, where we were staying. Notes: Pin It! How to Turn Your Next Vacation into an Adventure. No Roaming Fees: How Traveling Internationally Can Be Cheaper. The 6 Best Social Media Apps for Travelers. P^cubed® - Pick-Pocket Proof Pants™ - Business Traveler Pants. Is it Possible to Travel The World While Having a Rewarding Career? How to Travel Around the World With Just a 20lb Backpack.

3 Day/ 2 Night Cambodian Homestay - Asia Adventures - Day Tours, Phnom Penh Traveller Reviews. 50 Random Travel Questions and My Answers. Travel-Proof Your iPad Before Your Next Trip. Travel: Lombok, Bali’s big brother | Hyogo Times.