SPECIAL FEATURE: The Travelers, The World (TRAVEL)

Travelers of The Month: The Chiong Girls in The Land Down Under

Well hello there, mates!!! 😀

This month’s featured continent is extra special because aside from the fact that I’m six days ahead of schedule (excited kasi!),  you’ve already read it from the title…  I’ll be blogging about my family trip to AUSTRALIA!!!

I’ve already written once about my trip to Australia (you can check it out HERE), but THIS is different from THAT in a sense that there’s a mooore personal touch to THIS.  Ahem! 😛

Anywhooo, I’ll be talking about Sydney and its two suburbs — Parramatta and Westmead.  Of course, I’ll also include the city, some sightseeing here and there, and even some souvenirs!  Haha!  (Tip: click on some of the pictures/links I’ve provided to get tons of FACTS!!!)

So in alphabetical order, let me share with you some of the places we’ve been to in Sydney:

Blue Mountains

If you notice the distinct rock formation located behind our heads, that’s actually called The Three Sisters.  Coincidence?  I say not!  Kinapos lang ng isa kasi kami’y FOUR sisters!  Hehehe.

Bondi Beach

Ahhh.  THE beach just across the street.  I remember being ALL SMILES while at this beach because aside from the fact that it’s a beach right in the middle of the road, there were also A LOT of *ehem, ehem* alam niyo na…  mga “HELLO,” mates!  Think Hugh Jackman — in “plural” form!  Wahahahaha!  But seriously,  I may be living in an archipelagic country, but I still need to travel a couple of hours from the city just to see a SIGHT like Bondi Beach.  Well, depende nalang kung game kayong mag-beachin’ sa Manila Bay!  FAIL!

So alam niyo na kung ba’t tuwang-tuwa ako dito. 😀

Darling Harbour

Oh dahhh-ling!  This is Darling Harbour.  If my memory serves me right, you’ll have to pass through this place in order to get to the Sydney Aquarium…

Jenolan Caves

Isang napaka-lamig na kweba!  But still, this is spelunking at its BEST!!!

Oceanarium (Sydney Aquarium)

Have you watched the animated movie Finding Nemo?  Wala lang.  Baka kasi hindi niyo pa napapanood, eh ang cute kaya nina Nemo at Dory — and they’re exactly what you can find in the Sydney Aquarium.  Plus their friendsss!


One of the malls I frequented during my short-but-sweet stay in Sydney — Westfield — is located in this suburb.  Kaya pa’no ba ‘yan…  SHOPPING TIME!!!

Queen Victoria Building (QVB)

Look who went to visit her “grandmother”…  Hahaha, just kidding!  Ah, Queen Victoria!  Well, British Royalty IS British Royalty!  ‘Nuff said.

On a more serious note, the Queen Victoria Building is actually a MALL!  Yeheesss.  Built in the late 19th century.  Believe it or not. 😉

Sydney Harbour

If you’re fond of watching New Year countdowns on TV, I bet the Sydney Harbour Bridge is no stranger to you!  Lagi ba naman kasi mauna mag-celebrate ng New Year ang Land Down Under!  (Read: three hours ahead of the rest of the world!  Astiiig!)

Sydney Opera House

Repeat after me: SYDNEY. OPERA. HOUSE!!!  Now, if that’s not self-explanatory…  well, repeat THOSE three words again!  HA HA HA

The Gap

Two words: FISH and CHIPS!!!  Wahahahaha!  Anyway, this place may share a name with a famous American clothing retailer, but the experience you’ll get when you visit it is 100% Aussie!  Just take a closer look at the wind blowing through my hair!  F na F lang ng lola niyooo! =))

Westmead Children’s Hospital

The Children’s Hospital at Westmead is actually a teaching hospital of the University of Sydney — and this was where one of my pediatrician sisters studied her sub-specialty in Clinical Genetics.  IDOL!!!


We went to two different zoos: Taronga Zoo and Featherdale Wildlife Park (located in Doonside).  But due to the fact that this post’s already photo heavy, I’ll just show you some of the most popular animals that come to mind once you think of “Australia!” 😉  You name it, Australia’s got the cutest and most peculiar animals!

Kangaroos.  Koalas.  Tasmanian devils.  Wombats (which by the way was a childhood nickname of Prince William!  Uyyy, trivia!).  ETCETERA. 🙂


Here are more memorable shots from my Australian trip:

Circular Quay

Hilton Sydney

love the “atmosphere” of their train stations!

The Queen Victoria Building (QVB) is actually “bounded by George, Market, YORK and Druitt Streets.”

And of course,

souvenirs! souvenirs!! souvenirs!!!

Like what I’ve said before, just like the United Kingdom, Australia has a special place in my heart.  Besides, I think you’re nuts to pass up an opportunity to travel to a CONTINENT-slash-COUNTRY!  Actually, passing up ANY chance to travel makes you nutty-nut-nuts!!!  Harharhar!

Anyway…  speaking of the United Kingdom, you wouldn’t want to pass up the opportunity to read my next featured continent for it’s a continent that everybody — and I don’t care if I’m overgeneralizing here — wants to visit at least once in their lives!  Yes, I’m talking about the capital “E.”

“E” that stands for EUROPE, baby!  Even I… am excited for this — not just because of the continent, but also because of my featured traveler!  So see you again on April 12th!!!

Keep calm and travel on. 😉

define HOT and COLD – like literally!!! =))


This post is brought to you by The Lady’s 2012 Blog Project.

You can also check out my other featured travelers HERE.

Down Memory Lane, Food, Marked on the Calendar, Mi Familia y Mi Amigos

Family Night

February 18, 2012.  My family and I attended a thanksgiving dinner for our grandparents’ joint death anniversary.

We love you Lolo Joe and Lola Vic! Rest assured, you’ll forever be in our hearts!!! ♥

It started with a Mass…  then dinner…  and of course, ENTERTAINMENT courtesy of The Executives Band! 😀

My Tito Hector and cousin Julius Sanvictores are actually part of the aforementioned band, as well as one of my favorite bloggers, Cara Manglapus — who also happens to be the only girl member-slash-vocalist of the said group.

The Executives Band

The Executives Band’s Cara Manglapus

That night, I was also lucky enough to have finally met her.  (Thanks to my cousin Julius for introducing us!  Haha!)

another “fangirl moment” for me! =))

Check out Cara‘s blog HERE.

And of course, who can forget our much needed “cousin bonding!”  One just tied the knot, the other WILL also tie the knot within the year, and then another one just got engaged too!  Sooo, hindi naman ako masyado na-prepressure ng mga pinsan ko noh?!  Oh well.  HA HA HA

Anyway, meet my beautiful and handsome cousins!  And along the way, guess who’s who! 😛

Couples’ Corner ♥♥♥

After our thanksgiving dinner, we made the most of our “bonding time” by deciding to go to a spa across the street.  Spontaneous Moment #1.

at Babaylan Spa

Babaylan Spa‘s second branch is located at Scout Tuazon, Quezon City.  You can avail of their full-body massage for only Php450.  But if you prefer a quicker way to relax, you can opt for a foot massage (Php300) or foot spa (Php350).  Aside from the fact that it’s open from 9-2am (yes, 2AM!!!), I love Babaylan Spa for its location.  Let’s just say that its location is where I had most of my childhood memories, and THAT place will forever hold a special place in my heart JUST BECAUSE. 🙂

And if that wasn’t enough, we all decided to drink MILK TEA in the wee hours of the night (read: 2am)!  We went to four different milk tea places along Tomas Morato but unfortunately, the first three milk tea places we went to were already closed.  Luckily, we found SerendipiTea!!!

(photo courtesy of My SerendipiTea)

My SerendipiTea = milk tea fix at 2am!

Visit My SerendipiTea‘s Facebook page here.

And that was our Spontaneous Moment #2. 😉  Ah, one of the good things about spending time with my cousins: SPONTANEITY.  We may not have the chance to meet as often as we want to but when we do, it’s something I always look forward to!  So there.  See you next time!  (And I do hope it’s SOON, too!!!)

The Lady is now out!
😀 😀 😀

Down Memory Lane, Marked on the Calendar, Mi Familia y Mi Amigos, Reviews, The World (TRAVEL)

Watch Mamma Mia, Go to Baguio

Sooo, I had another EPIC weekend.  And knowing me, I just have to blog about it — again!  But hey, this is a PERSONAL blog after all.  So what did you expect?  Haha!

Anyway, let’s start with ba-ba-ba-BAGUIO!!! 😀

My family and I went to Baguio for the weekend since my brother-in-law was already there anyway for a golf tournament.  We stayed at one of The Manor‘s family suites in Camp John Hay, and that’s where all the epic-ness started!

If you’ve been to The Manor (or Baguio in general), I think you’ll agree that the weather isn’t the same in Manila.  And when I say “not the same,” I mean it in a positive way!  I don’t know about you, but I’m actually a “cold person” — meaning, I looove anything cold, including the cold weather!  But if you want to interpret my being a “cold person” in a different way, that’s NOT my business anymore!  Go ahead, feel free to do so.

Hahaha! Of course, I kid! 😛

Moving on, here are some more shots of The Manor:

view from our room

Aside from savoring the awesome cold weather (I heard that it was 10 °C when we were in Baguio), I just practically took advantage of the fact that I could be a “bum” in my own right for at least a day.  So some of the things I did while in The Manor Baguio were watching DVDs (Bridesmaids and Chances Are — which by the way stars a very young Robert Downey, Jr.  So spell H-O-T!), eating, shopping at the outlet stores, eating, having a massage at the spa, and yes, EATING!  EATING!!  EATING!!!

two of my newest discoveries! HARHARHAR

Hay, kaya nakakarir ko ang pag-shoshorts sa Baguio eh…  eh pa’no, marami kasing baong “fats” ang legs ko!  (Read: mga pata!)  Wahahahaha!

jump shots! 😛

Well, ganun talaga!  Gotta love my cuuurves, people!  And yes, gotta take advantage of the cold weather I’m so deprived of while in Manila!  Kaya shorts all the way talaga!!!  HA HA HA

But seriously, if you’re planning to GO TO BAGUIO, stay at The Manor.  It’s ALL good!!!  I actually give it a rating of: FIVE HEARTS (♥♥♥♥♥)

And then… there’s MAMMA MIA!

The Lady’s outfit wouldn’t be complete without her favorite accessory – anything UNION JACK! Hehehe.

Speaking of the U.K., did you know that MAMMA MIA! The Musical is actually an original British production???  Ooh, plus!  plus!  points there!!! 😉

Anywhooo, I watched it last Friday at CCP (Cultural Center of the Philippines) with my sisters and MY, MY, it was totally a very, very, lovely show!  Of course my ticket was the cheapest (tumataginting na Php772.50 lang naman), but who cares?  Nilibre lang naman ako eh…  magrereklamo pa ba ako?! =))

view from my seat… not THAT bad! Haha!

my “cheap,” but totally worth it ticket!

Besides… all those “accents,” all those witty lines, and all those wonderful ABBA songs?  Totally WORTH IT!!!  I actually plan on watching it again if I have the time… this time, with a more “expensive” ticket for a better view, and yes, a better “musical” experience!  Rawr!

But yeah, you and I have to hurry because the show runs until February 19, 2012 only.  We can cross our fingers and hope that it gets extended, but why depend on wishful thinking when you already have the power in your hands NOW?  At meganon talaga?!

Sabi nga ng ate ko,

Kung gusto niyo sumaya, manood kayo ng MAMMA MIA!

Oha, rhyming lang si a-TEH!  But it’s true.  If you want to be happy, head to CCP and WATCH MAMMA MIA! now!!!  I promise, it’s a rating of FIVE HEARTS and mooore (♥♥♥♥♥+++++)!

For more information on how you can buy tickets, click here.

♪ “…’cause somewhere in the crowd there’s YOU!” ♫

 Enjoooy! 🙂