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DestinationNZ: Christchurch

Christchurch: Punting on the Avon river, vinneve

Yes we are very lucky here in New Zealand to finally survived the 2nd lockdown last month (Auckland only as the rest of the region are on level 1 and the South Island are covid free!) after some SILLY people who came home for their own safety sabotage our peace and safety here inside the country! I am so annoyed at them. Who wouldn’t? being on a lockdown is not that fun for the 2nd time around. We follow the rules here but those people acted the way as if they are in another country who they don’t care much about. Anyway, thanks for everyone who cooperated and the government for acting quickly (though there’s an inside story about this which is part of their fault) so now we are back to ALMOST back to normal. Aside from wearing face mask, social distancing and sanitizing like an OCD we are fine and can travel anywhere in the country now that we are in level 2. Soon this coming Thursday we will be back to level 1 which is great more freedom!! but yes do not be complacent and they suggested to still wear a face mask when on public transportation including airplanes!

Please watch this video below and if you could SUBSCRIBE to PinoySwiss abroad channel on Youtube that would be great for more videos!

Come & join us!

PINOYSWISS ABROAD

Thanks for reading and watching! Cheers!

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Back in Mission Bay, AKL

Mission Bay, AucklandNZ, vinneve

It has been 6-7 years I think since the last time we were here. So it’s time to visit this place while students are still having a school and the parents are still earning money to save for the coming holidays. Hurray!! It is best to visit when it’s off peak hours like early morning (9-11am) so you can have all the best seat in the restaurants and even on the parking grounds. FYI Auckland is still on the alert level 2.5 it means you must wear a face mask on all public transportations and establishments. But unfortunately some are lacking and freely walking to a store without wearing one. Anyway, we have the least cases compared to other countries and so we are having much more freedom. Other regions in NZ are on level 1 which is great! It means “almost back to normal”. No case of covid.

The Mission Bay Parade, vinneve

See the pink building there? It is the Fontein Belgian beer cafe restaurant. We have eaten brunch in there using a GrabOne coupon $20 to get $40 in return. It is a good deal and I only pay $5 just for the service charge. Since Auckland can be very expensive so it pays to buy a coupon. FYI.

Cheeky Black back Seagulls, vinneve

They’re double the size of the regular seagulls that you have seen somewhere but they are many living here being cheeky at times waiting for you to turn your back on your food so they can steal it and fly away! Mind you they can be very near you and doesn’t shy away. Their favorite meal to steal is the “fish and chips” and no they are not even cheap! Beware! haha!

SPRING BREAK TRAVELS SOON, PinoySwiss Abroad

Please check out this video from PinoySwiss Abroad as per this LINK. LIKE SHARE AND SUBSCRIBE. Thank You!!

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Destination: West Auckland

French Bay, Titirangi

I am glad that we finally went here last week before we get into lockdown again this week after having freedom for more than 100 days covid-free! Why? same issues like what other countries are facing eversince. Now we are back to lockdown level 3 for 2 weeks then we’ll see what’s next.

ARATAKI VISITOR CENTER (above) it is just 40 minutes drive away from our place. Narrow winding roads, bush walks everywhere.

Trust Stadium

This is where I go for exercise and do some repetition of walking before the gym. In this tough times we need to be mentally healthy and fresh air plus a dose of sun helps a lot to boost your endorphins!

Auckland Zoo

Our zoo is also naturally beautiful. It serves like a mini paradise for all the animals living inside. So many natural landscape that you cannot help but to take some photos.

Friend’s house, Party time!

The moment we’ve always been waiting for! After missing all my friends for 3 months of lockdown / quarantine level 4-2 we had our “thanksgiving party” that we are all safe and healthy! Only now we will miss them again.

Hobsonville Point Walkway

This is just 30 minutes away from home. This also serve as a ferry terminal and every week end there is a Farmers market nearby and lot’s of homemade products to buy and dine in to. It is for the whole family plus this walkway is long enough for you and your dog to walk on and enjoy the view.

Riverhead Tavern (lowtide)

Brunching before cruising is nice for a week end away with the family (above) NZ oldest riverside tavern.

There are a lot of places whether hiking, horse riding, hunting, camping or beaches we had it all in the West. Wild West indeed. The featured image above is in Titirangi Village. They are housing 2 art galeries here and some restaurants with a wonderful view of nature.

These are some famous places that I have been in the past (bold) and some would like to visit. Check them out here below:

  • Piha beach and the Lion rock
  • Bethells beach
  • Waitakere ranges – for bush walking
  • Kumue wine country
  • Muriwai beach – on top of the cliffs hundreds of gannet birds nesting here
  • Crystal Mountain
  • Skydiving in Parakai or if you’re a PRO then any cliffs will do
  • Paraki Springs
  • Extreme edge rock climbing in Glen Eden
  • Kiwi Valley Farm Park
  • Tree Adventures
  • Hollywood Cinema – the oldest in NZ since 1915
  • West Lynn Flower and Butterfly house
  • Riverhead Cruise
  • MOTAT
  • Western Springs
  • Helensville Railway Station
  • And many more like this vlog as below from PinoySwiss abroad (Youtube) please watch, like, share and subscribe! 🙂
@PinoySwiss abroad Youtube channel

So many things to do and see plus so many old and new restaurants, coffee shops and malls to choose from. West is developing alright as the population in Auckland soars! Until next time. Thanks for reading.

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Auckland Day Out

“Necessity is blind until it becomes conscious. FREEDOM is the consciousness of necessity.” by Karl Marx

It seems we are now in a hurry to make the most of our covid free days since the country open up the border to it’s residents and citizens who were based or/and stranded abroad. We can basically say we are covid-free since June as we do not have a community transmission but we can never know since the last mishaps of some irresponsible people coming back and physically jumping out of the barriers of their hotel isolation recently (they have been caught up and going to be charged with their follies!) which is by the way the taxpayers are paying for them though it’s those people wanting to come home and be safe… ironically they are the one bringing the fear and unsafety back to the country or community by disobeying the law and safety. I wonder if we should close up the border now or continue to accept these people with covid-19 back into the country? So now is the right time to go and about on our own backyard asap while we still can!

The City, the tower, the wharf and street. Some photos for you to see this month of July. Life is good while we can still have the freedom to enjoy it!

Auckland War Museum. We have so many museums in the City and this is just a few minutes drive away from the city centre. It is inside the Domain Park which is also a huge park and full of beautiful nature that you will love to stroll or do some exercise since it is near residential places.

Mt.Rangitoto, active volcano AKL, vinneve
AklWarMuseum, vinneve

The food & drinks at the bar & restaurants, coffee shops, foodcourts at the mall, food trucks, farmers market etc. Yes we’ve been deprived of these while on lockdown. All open now to our hearts (& mouth) content.

Alleyway@AKL, vinneve

Auckland Zoo. The nature and their animals are such a wonderful sights to see. Families and friends came back to visit this wholesome activity and it doesn’t matter if it’s raining or drizzling people comes in hundreds and yes back to normal no social distancing and enjoying the life!

Arataki Visitor Centre. Located in West Auckland. Bush walkways. View of the Waitakere ranges. Sub-tropical rainforest. Flora and fauna. FREE entry.

@PinoySwiss abroad

I hope you enjoyed my post today and these are current photos here in NZ. We are now in the mood to travel. Our last week of school holiday. Thanks for your time!

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Foreign vloggers stranded in the Philippines amidst COVID-19

While on lockdown in New Zealand I must admit that I was hooked up into watching vloggers (up to now actually) traveling the world especially traveling to my birth country THE PHILIPPINES.  We supposed to travel there last April but of course, it has been canceled.  It amazed me that these foreign vloggers begin to love the country and what it can offer even in these tough times.  While traveling they learned about cultures, values, and learned to appreciate the Filipino people who helped them and make them feel at home.  Check their vlogs and you will see some beautiful places and their roller-coaster experiences while on lockdown and up to a current situation which is the General Quarantine (GCQ).  You may find some useful information about the country and their real image as shown by the vloggers as per their real experiences. Please click their name as I linked their sites and their travel experiences before the pandemic.

Prepare to be amazed.

  1.  MAKE IT HAPPEN VLOG  an Austrian couple who always keeps coming back to the Philippines and finally decided to call Manila home and now stranded in SIARGAO (while on holiday) as per this link & another vlog as per this LINK. An extra info from Meljean Solon20 things to do in Siargao” as per this LINK.

2.  THE JUICY VLOG  a couple from the UK traveling around the Philippines who got stranded in their own home base in Manila.  “11 Ways the Philippines is better than the UK” on this LINK.

3.  MARTIN SOLHAUGEN  a Norwegian travel vlogger who is now engaged to another travel vlogger named AVELOVINIT and traveling the Philippines when they got stranded in Siargao as well.  You will see his latest vlog about “Top 10 places you must visit in the Philippines.”

4.  EIGHT MILES FROM HOME  a couple from the UK with a child named Story and her nan also stranded in Siargao.  They have traveled around Asia and lived in Portugal and now thinking of living in the Philippines even after the lockdown.

5.  JUMPING PLACES  a couple both from different countries decided to do full-time vlogging and currently stranded in the beautiful island of EL NIDO PALAWAN.  Here is their current quarantine experience “A Day in El Nido Quarantined” check their other travel to another side of the island >> CORON.

There are some more foreign vloggers and tourists stranded all over the Philippines.  You can easily check them out on Youtube. These are just 5 of my favorite foreign vloggers telling their own experiences and love of travel.  Since we all cannot travel to any country aside from our own so it’s best to show you what I know and why I keep coming back to my birth country the Philippines.  Family. Friends. Values. Nature.  I hope once you have checked them out you will agree with me.

Please also check this site out:  Mom & Son expats (NZ after lockdown) 

Enjoy watching!  Cheers!

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Colorful Motiongate (Dubai)

“There is nothing more fun than entertaining kids!”  by Jerry Seinfeld

This is also in response to the Word of the Day: OPPORTUNITY .  This may be our last time to get this opportunity to be in this place as we finally went back home for good.  But who knows what will happen in the future?…

CNY2020@motiongate, vinneve

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Motiongate1, vinneve

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Motiongate2, vinneve

We were there last January this year and had a blast of fun! (related link HERE).  My son enjoyed it so much and asked me when we could be back. Unfortunately, we won’t be for a very long time.  As we cannot predict the future, especially now we have this covid-19 to worry about among other things in life.

Dubai is nice for some fun and will always recommend for people who will do some transit to both UAE Cities of Dubai and Abu Dhabi.  Try to have a stop over of at least 2-3 days to fully enjoy the country and what each city has to offer.

For now we will only reminisce our times in both cities.  And yes… wait for the new normal to push through once we all can safely travel again.  It depends in each country.  Stay safe everyone!!  Cheers 🙂

 

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More than words

In response to the “Word of the Day Challenge” as per the words below. It summarizes the feelings we’ve felt while back in Switzerland last December to January 2020.

Updated:  I thought I better add some of these Cee’s Fun Foto ChallengeSense of Seeing and Sense of Touching.

“The words printed here are concepts.  You must go through the experiences.” by Saint Augustine

WISH 

Oberigberg1, vinneve

SURPRISE

IlluminariumZurich, vinneve

ADMIRE

Oberiberg2, vinneve

DELIGHT

MaroniDessert, vinneve

EXPLORING Unique places

Wettswil, vinneve

FOG

RickenbackSZ, vinneve

I am having a hard time publishing this and I wonder why, as this is now my 3rd attempt to publish this.  It will show as published but then the next day I cannot find it and so the viewers cannot see it too.  So I stop linking the words above as pingback.  I hope this will work this time so other readers can see this post.  If you are having a similar issue with WP please let me know by the comments below.  Thanks for checking, much appreciated.

Tschuss!!

 

 

 

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Zurich Universpital & around

The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows. - Sydney J. Harris

Going to the universities in Zurich is the same as going (click this link) to Focus Terra a small geological museum and also a university in itself.  This place is full of them, both… museums (we didn’t get the chance to view the zoological museum as it was close on a  Monday) and universities and yes there’s a hospital too!  

Below is another mode of transport. SEILBAHN (cable tram/funicular) near the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and a spacious square terrace nearby.  It is on the higher ground hence the reason there is a cable tram/funicular aside from the normal tram you can take on the other side of the road.  Either way, it’s always on time as Switzerland is known for precision.

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My photos surrounding these universities cannot do justice to the real beauty of it if you were there.  Cool January adds up to the charm of the place.
would be great if my son can enter into one of these universities someday.  He wants to study meteorology (he is half Swiss and only 11 today) or anything about Science.  I hope we can afford to do so and also if he can pass what is required.

It’s nice to dream while we are facing the world in chaos (link to the previous post).

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Focus Terra, Zurich

 

Allow me to post one of our travel backlogs last January 2020 while in Zurich, Switzerland.  Since my son and I love to go to a museum and we already been to the Swiss National Museum or also known as Landes Museum click the LINK (to read my older post about it)… I decided to see a smaller museum and it’s FREE to enter where some people don’t know that it exists, and yes harder to find if you are not familiar with the location. We got lost looking for a particular street on the map. So I make it easy by showing some photos below on what landmark to look from.

Here below is the Terra Focus, a museum about volcanoes, fossils, rocks, minerals, etc. Going there by public transport you have to take either Tram #9 or Tram #11, near the main train station Hauptbahnhof and tram stop @UniversitatSpital (University Hospital).  FYI.

Crystal @focusterra.zurich, vinneve

FocusTerra signage, vinneve

ETHZurich, vinneve

The brochures above are located inside the museum as it doubles as a University. See this LINK for more information if you happen to be interested in these subjects and wanted to study in Zurich.  ETH Zurich is one of the most prestigious universities in the world.  The location of Focus Terra is within the university belt and there’s a beautiful park nearby.  I will post some photos of the beautiful surrounding on my next blog. Please wait for it.  Tschuss!

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Destination: Dubai Parks and Resort

We were here 2 years ago but only went to LEGOLAND for our son to enjoy and no time to roam around after as it was late and we have to go drive almost 2 hours to go back home to Abu Dhabi.  So this year last January we finally able to get around and see what this big park can offer.

I highly recommended ROVE Parks Hotel as it is inside the Dubai Parks and Resort along with other resorts like LAPITA and 4 themed parks (Motiongate, 2 Legoland, Bollywood & Riverland).  We got a good deal at that time and 1 theme park ticket was included in our hotel accommodation. The room was enough for us, modern and clean.  The restaurant offers a buffet which is always good and it’s spacious inside with wooden style decors.  They also have a laundry room and a BIG plus is having kids playroom includes PlayStations, games, badminton, etc. (my son loves it!). Always check their website for more deals.  I would love to come back here if ever we go back to the UAE.

ROVE PARK HOTEL 

OUTLET VILLAGE MALL  all the branded shoes, bags, and clothing are here with some discounted prices.  It is also inside the Village of Dubai Parks and Resorts.  There are a lot of free shows inside so when you get tired and sit on the bench there are possibilities a new show will start for everyone to enjoy!  One more reason why you have to visit this place!

RIVERLAND beautiful landscapes and buildings surrounding the 4 themed parks with restaurants and souvenir shops.  They really developed this for the enjoyment of people strolling around, getting their selfies and instagramable photos. One day is not enough to see it all.  The place is HUGE  plus some theme parks inside and a connected resort (LAPITA) to this place.  How I wish we still have time to explore! 😦

I will definitely miss Dubai and other emirates (Cities) and of course my adopted city Abu Dhabi.  I am not sure if we will ever come back to the UAE as it depends on what the future will bring us.  Somehow it hurts that for now, we bid our farewell to the beautiful and tolerant country of the UAE.  I will look back on all the throwback memories on Facebook and can only reminiscent of the past while we were living in this Country.  There are times I took it for granted and all the luxuries in life we had but now I am truly grateful that I have experienced it all while we can.

Cheers and I hope you like some of the photos and may give you some ideas if you happen to be in Dubai or Abu Dhabi, not to mention other emirates who are also as beautiful and interesting as these two.  Please check my older post about it as per this LINK1 and LINK2Thanks for taking the time to read, like and comment.