And all of a sudden, I was packing my suitcases for a business trip to Taiwan. To be quite honest with you, visiting Taiwan has never been on my bucket list. But then I was offered the possibility to work in Taipei on a German Oktoberfest. Yes, you have read correctly! A German girl like me flying half around the globe to work on a traditional German festival in an asian country. Pretty crazy, huh? But let’s start from the beginning…
At the end of October 2017, I got a WhatsApp message in one of my work groups saying that someone is looking for a German girl working in Taipei, Taiwan as soon as possible. And I didn’t hesitate a second. What an exciting adventure! So here is my trip in pictures. As I have so many, I decided to split this travel post into two parts. Enjoy the first one! If you have any questions regarding my trip or want to hear some advice on Taiwan, feel free to ask me in the comment section.
I couldn’t believe it, when I entered an almost empty plane for my first out of three flights.
Unfortunately, the next two were anything but empty.
Is there anything as awesome as flying ?! :) I just love it so much and would like to do it way more often.
… I mean the view over Hong Kong – You just get that from above :)
After 17 hours of traveling, I had the luxury of a driver picking me up from the airport. Yay!
As this was a business trip, the hotel was provided and upon arrival I checked into the Sparkle Hotel.
The hotel was located just next to the famous Taipei 101 tower, which is super central.
Since I arrived late at night, I just quickly went to my workplace to meet the man I was working for. Then I also went to a really cool outdoor community area called Commune A7 near the 101 tower with lots of street market stalls and little shops.
I already loved everything I have seen, so I was really looking forward to my stay here.
View from the hotel patio. If you follow me on my Instagram, you got your daily dose of this view haha.
I guess, I couldn’t really believe it myself. Within a week, I flew from Berlin to Taipei for work.
Fun Fact: I have never been on the German Oktoberfest. And I didn’t own a Dirndl, which was necessary for the job. Finding a Dirndl at the end of Oktober is hardly possible. But, I found one as you can see ;)
So, for the next twelve days I worked on the biggest German Oktoberfest an Asia area has ever seen. Hosted by Michael Wendel, who moved to Taiwan over 20 years ago to start a German bakery.
He expanded over the years and now hosts the annual Oktoberfest in Taipei.
To be working in a country, where you don’t speak the language (and many Taiwanese don’t speak English) was a whole new experience for me. It taught me a lot and I am grateful for that. I am also grateful for all the amazing people I met during this time. The band who performed every night was from Germany too and I quickly became friends with the singer Susi with whom I spent an incredible time together.
You CANNOT imagine how many times I had to pose for strangers.
I had to take photos on my way to work, when I worked and on my way home. It was crazy. Felt like a celebrity haha.
Here is also the unoffical Facebook page for the event, where you can see some more pictures of the event from visitors. You might spot me ;)
On one of the nights, I met some really nice German folks. After I finished work, we went to a nearby pub and had way too many drinks. We ended up in their apartment on the 17th floor with an incredible view over Taipei. We talked for hours and watched the sun rise :)
Could indulge in Chinese/Taiwanese food everyday all day.
I hope you enjoyed the first part of my Taipei photo diary.
In the next post, I will show you more of what I did besides working and I am going to show you two amazing lookouts : The Taipei 101 tower and the Elephant mountain. So stay tuned!
*All pictures were taken with my Samsung Galaxy S8.
It has been a while since Melissa and I went on a trip to one of the Gili Islands: Gili Trawangan. In my What to do in Bali post I already enlisted some things you should definitely do while visiting the beautiful island. And so is a trip to the Gili Islands, which is and island collection consisting of Gili Trawangan, Gili Air and Gili Meno. All three islands are located close to the Indonesian west coast. We only went to one of them, but saw a little bit of the others while we went on a snorkeling trip. Gili Trawangan is the busiest and most vibrant one from where I want to share some impressions of. Enjoy the pictures and feel free to ask me some questions about the trip!
I finally managed to go through all my travel photos from my previous trip to Bali. In this post I like to share my impressions and also give you 10 tipps what you can or better should do over there. Enjoy!
#1 Go Surfing
This advize should be no surprise. As I already showed you in my bucket list post about surfing and millions of Instagram pictures surfing has been one of the main reasons why we travelled to Bali. We attended a surf lesson on Kuta Beach and quickly learned how to ride the (small) waves. So much fun!
#2 Indulge in the Balinese cuisine
Well, what can I tell you except : I LOVED THE FOOD! We indulged in the Balinese cuisine with all it’s fresh and exotic fruits, shakes and various rice dishes. I guess I just spent some time in food heaven over there. I highly recommend eating in Warungs (type of small family-owned restaurants) and this is also where you will get Melissa and my favorite meal: GADO GADO :)
#3 Visit Ubud
Upon our trip to Bali I read this article about Ubud where it says: Ubud is the cultural mecca of Bali, oasis of art surrounded by lush green rice terraces. Which I think describes it pretty well. But Ubud is also so known for its delicious food (again!), markets, traditional dance show, yoga classes and many more. Even though Ubud is located in the middle of the country and it takes some time to get there I really encourage you to leave the beach for some days and indulge in the real Bali as they say.
#4 Visit the Monkey Forest
Visiting the Monkey Forest actually requires my tip no. 3. Because the Monkey Forest is located in Ubud. Once you are in Ubud you definitely have to visit all these adorable monkeys – But watch your belongings ;)
#5 Visit the Rice Terraces
We decided to visit one of the most famous tourist destination: Tegalalang Rice Terrace. Unfortunately I began to rain shortly after arriving (be prepared for a lot of rain during your stay in Bali!). This was still such a beautiful place to watch and even walk through. Really impressive!
#6 Go Shopping
Do I need to explain?
#7 Drive Scooter
Getting around by scooter seems to be the only way in Bali. And I guess I haven’t seen more scooters in one place than in Bali. Even though the traffic is absolutely chaotic and can get quite dangerous we had so much fun driving around on our rental scooters. I even think of getting myself a scooter again :)
#8 Visit a temple
Bali has so many temples to offer and from one of my previous travels to Thailand I really love the architecture. This time we went to visit the Tanah Lot Temple. Even though my cultural activities don’t really take place during my travels I try to do at least one or two. Despite the attached boringness that I always think of (childhood trauma!), it is one of the best ways to get to know the country and its people – and it always turned out not boring.
Probably one of the main reasons to go on vacation is to R-E-L-A-X. So besides doing some activities in order to get to know the country also get some rest. Bali offers massages on almost every doorstep and as someone addicted to massages I didn’t miss out on the chances of getting some relaxing treatments.
#10 Visit the nearby Gili Islands
Read about it here.
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Not another surf post! Well one more until I will go surfing again (hopefully soon!) After showing you how it looks like when you are on a surfboard for the first time. I do have some more pictures Melissa and I shot on the beach.
Since I didn’t own a surfing gear prior this trip and I didn’t want to do my first surf lesson with a regular bikini, I bought this really nice long sleeve wetsuit from Rip Curl. Once you are surfing you are exposed to the sun for a pretty long time. Therefore I wanted something which covers most of my body in order to not get sunburned. I had a sunburn on my head though which was enough for me to handle haha.
Surf Wetsuit – Rip Curl (Shop HERE) // Sunglasses – Gucci
Photography by Melissa Loreena
*GIF from GIPHY
Surfing in Bali : A dream come true. After all these years that I wanted to learn how to surf I made it happen and ticked it off my bucket list. And Bali was for sure the perfect spot for it, because it is a surfing paradise. I tried to get us into a surf camp but Melissa and I changed our plans and booked private lessons instead. On our first day we took a two hour lesson at Odyssee Surf School.
I wouldn’t have thought that TWO HOURS of surfing feels like running a marathon (Note: I didn’t run a marathon yet, but it is on my bucket list). I think you get the comparison. Our teacher did an amazing job though and I couldn’t have asked for a better way for us to learn the basics of surfing. It didn’t take us long before Melissa and I surfed our first baby wave.
But I soon realized that there is still sooo much to learn. Not only practical wise, but also theoretical. Therefore I might want to go into a surf camp soon. Because besides all the fun I never ever want to get into the situation where I have been on my fourth day of surfing or so. Where somehow I totally lost control of almost everything and had big trouble to get back to the beach. Even though it looks so easy you must not underestimate this sport, because it is pretty tough and can also be very risky.
Before flying back to Singapore we used every last minute of our stay in Kuta Beach to take some photo of us surfing. I can’t wait for me to ride a green wave, because surfing on this baby white waves doesn’t look so cool as the ‚real‘ surfer shots. But everyone starts somewhere :) I hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I enjoyed surfing. And one thing is for sure: I will be back on that surf board.
Have you been surfing before? And do you maybe have any recommendations for a cool surf camp?
Photography by Melissa Loreena