Search results for bali

One somewhat rainy afternoon, pops and I took a car ride around and to the center of the island. The itty bitty streets and speedy turns alongside jungle hills made us quite nervous, but we saw all that we could see: from scenic rice fields to baby elephants roaming the elephant park up and around Ubud. Seeing the elephants was one of my favorite parts of this trip… they are such beautiful creatures and these guys had quite the personalities!

Ubud has the most charming streets with shops, vendors and restaurants in the middle of the island surrounded by trees, hills and astonishing views.. It is the art hub and is known for its fine art, dance and music.

On the way back down to Kuta  we stopped by the Tanah Lot Temple, on the western coast of the island. This hindu temple sits on a big rock just off shore of the land. Although you have to walk through a mall of clustered touristy souvenir shops before arriving at the stunning view of the off-shore temple, it is well worth the trek!

There are so many beautiful things to see in Bali… we didn’t get a chance to do them all, but it gives a reason to have to come back. Next time we plan to climb the volcanoes and see the northern part of the island…. just not in the rainy season.

The third and final destination of the father-daughter trip in southeast Asia was the island nation of Bali, Indeonesia. We had tbe opportunity to discover two parts of the island, and this is the first of those two.

Kuta is known for its beaches and its surfing, which was obvious by just strolling: packed streets with surfshops and surfboard rental shops squished in between temps and local eats. The streets were itty bitty (I’m not even sure how some cars got through them… especially with loads of people always walking around) and filled with charm. The beach is walled off and is accessibly by adorable doorways. The beaches on this side of the island stretch northward as far as the eye can see. Women walk around ready to give massages, pedicures and manicures or sell serongs. The men walk around offering (for a small price) chairs or cold Bintang beers (an Indeonesian beer). People watching is at its peak.

We stayed in a hotel called Poppies, that my dad’s friend had suggested. This place was a hidden treasure behind the walls of local Kuta. Once you walk through the archway of Poppies-land, the hustle bustle disappears and you enter a green jungle with bungalows, random statues and preciousness everywhere.

The town almost reminded me of Beirut‘s Hamra- tiny streets with tons of shops, cafés and chains all around. The Starbucks, Pizza Hut and Surf Shops didn’t keep Bali from having it’s own little spin on things…. the motorbike. There were herds of people on scooters everywhere ALL THE TIME. It was baffling and so different and borderline funny. In Kuta you can rent a scooter for a few hours, a few years or however long you want. People from around the world discover Bali on two wheels. I had never seen anything like it. Instead of watching for speeding cars when you step out of the doorways from the beach or from hotels, you watch out for scooters that pop out of nowhere. The streets had the perfect mix of the modern world and the classic Indeonesian touch. The temples were beautiful and every corner had a little bundle of flowers on a tray for the gods.

As we were there in January, it was indeed the rainy season— but we still got some sun! And it was as hot as can be! Even the rainy days were charming.

*Note: We were told to only drink bottled water (even for brushing teeth!)

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Kuta Beach

Poppies Restaurant – Local and International Food

Un’s Restaurant – Local and International Food

TJ’s – Mexican Food

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On this same trip we hit up Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.


istabul-turkey-de-quelle-planete-es-tu-21Istanbul had been on my bucket list for quite some time. The land where east meets west, in my mind it was a Mecca of sweets, coffee and other wonderful things. The Turkish pop music only made me want to go more, the culture that was always said to be so hospitable and full of life.

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My friend Olivia and her free spirit and craving for travel and the discovery of culture, moved to Istanbul late last year. Louis and I thus had been dreaming of stopping by, so we spontaneously booked some round trip tickets for a long weekend. A whopping 3 hour flight from Paris, we made it to the land of bling and baklava. We were welcomed by freshly folded Turkish towels in Olivia’s love shack, topped with soap sporting Louis’s last name, which we quickly learned is a soap brand and literally means “pure”. Cherry on top.

A few tips on these cliché but fantastic places: Grand Bazaar and Spice Market, beyond worth it. You could spend hours in both. Accept the tea they offer you in each stall and don’t be afraid to bargain your eye candy. Grab some freshly squeezed pomegranate juice on the street to boost your body. Buy some Turkish delights to bring back home for friends and family, nuts or olives do the trick as well. Wander around and find secret rooftop cafés where you can sit and chat with a local, enjoy a random pastry.

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On a side note, one of my favorite parts of the trip was strolling in the neighborhood market to make our own Turkish breakfast (did you see my video of the Turkish breakfast Olivia and Elif made in Paris? Well, there will be a version 2 coming up). If you whip out your best “merhaba” the vendors will give you a big smile.

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As for our Saturday night in Istanbul, we kicked off the evening at the lovely Akin Balik (in Beyoğlu, reservations recommended). If possible, bring a Turk with you to make sure what you order is spot on, but regardless, order heaps of mezze, some Raki and enjoy. The main fish we shared at our dreamy dinner were leverk and çupra… unfortunately I don’t have the translation (cough, Sedat). This restaurant has hanging lights, Turkish music, Efes and the works. It’s all outside on the seaside, and to allure despite the winter chills they heat the tables by burning coal at your feet — which is initially hot hot hot but then you realize it’s pretty fantastic. We then wandered to the Karaköy area, followed by taxying (why not) up to Taksim to check out a nameless mysterious and trendy cocktail bar ran by a American fellow off of Istiklal Street.

Our Sunday, and last day, was filled with sunshine and was perfect for our touristy excursions. We strolled around the breakthtaking Blue Mosque and  Hagia Sofia, visited the rainbow staircases and strolled through the trendy Galata neighborhood with coffee breaks at adorable cafés. We finished off the weekend with a stop by the Bosphorus Brewing Company, for some Turkish beer action. I’m not sure we could have had a better 3.5 days in Istanbul. There is still so much to see, and we certainly plan to go back.

Tips on playing tourist in the city: Don’t be afraid of the public transportation. The metro and trams in Istanbul are easy to navigate and can get you to and from major points of interest (you can buy individual tickets at all stations, so keep your lira coins!) Taxis are a good deal if you’re not going far, but try to know where you’re going, as can happen in any city, tourists can get taken on the long route. Wifi is everywhere, so don’t fret about being connected and looking up places to go while you’re out and about.

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Akin Balik – Traditional restaurant on the sea, perfect for a dinner out. Mezze/seafood. Reservations recommended.

Bosphorus Brewing Company – Brewery / Taproom / Restaurant

Café Galata – Café / Sweets

Constantinople – Hagia Sofia / Blue Mosque

Grand Bazaar – Turkish Marketplace

Karakoy Gulluoglu
– Baklava heaven

Kavalti Evi – Turkish Breakfast (Order menamen!)

Mavra – Café / Restaurant / Concept Store

Miss Pizza – Italian Restaurant / Pizzeria

Spice Market – Enough said

Unter – Restaurant / Bar (with music at night)

Velvet Café – Trendy Café / Snacks

 

Here is a little review of De quelle planète es-tu’s 2012. I hope yours was equally as magical.

Started the year off with a bang in Asia with my dad and petted elephants in Bali.

Petting elephants - de quelle planète es-tu?

Discovered a mysterious neighborhood in Paris.

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Tons of tea parties.

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Went bubbly tasting in Champagne.

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Spent a lot of time at the country house and in the garden.

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Went to Colmar for a day.

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Had delicious grub at the Kinfolk Parisian Picnic.

Kinfolk Parisian Picnic - De quelle planète es-tu?

Continued to fall in love.

Love - De quelle planète es-tu?

Received jamón in the mail.

Jamon in the mail - De quelle planète es-tu?

Played host and celebrated oh so many wonderful things.

Celebration - De quelle planète es-tu?

2012 has been a year of transitions. Filled with so many wonderful memories with so many fantastic people. So much change in such a good way. The clock is ticking.

I’m anxious to see what 2013 brings.

BONNE ANNEE!

Yesterday was such a fun day, despite the chilly weather. These pictures are all of the things I really liked about Saturday.

The day started with a birthday celebration for Paul. We all got burgers from Camion Qui Fume and had a really fun art gallery …of portraits of Paul!  Oh Happy Day always has the best party ideas.

Later on I managed to stroll around in the 17th with one of my favorite Brazilians (where I found the awesome purple door witha jumbo photostrip!). We of course stopped by Beauty Cakes to have one of Ruthy‘s cupcakes.

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This Red Ball Project looks too fun.

I just ordered Creepers from the new awesomely adorable site Rebelle.

How about Chocolate Chip?

The burger above is from Le Camion Qui Fume– Paris’s first food truck! Have you tried one?

I’d like to go back to the beaches of Bali.

I am beyond stoked to go to Denver this week.

Tea parties with friends are the best.