November of last year, I visited Ireland for the first time. My fiancé and I (yep that’s right 💍😍)  rented a car and drove around Ireland, outside Dublin and up to the west coast. The truth is, we were on a quest to find a wedding venue for our dream destination wedding. There is actually a story behind this. When we were discussing ideas and countries for our wedding, we both agreed that we wanted something very different from where we live. Different from the white sand beaches and tropic weather. We wanted something old world, romantic and well, somewhere that’s around 20°C (in June). So, my fiancé suggested Ireland (out of the blue), and I randomly chose Portugal (just because I wanted a place where most of my friends haven’t been to yet).

So, moving on with the story, we visited Ireland first and then Portugal right after. Are you excited to know which country we chose? Well, for now, let me present to you the different venues we visited in Ireland. All were interesting, maybe some quirks here and there, but delightful nonetheless.

First stop was Carton House in Kildare, just 20 minutes from Dublin City.


That’s Fionnuala, the Wedding Planner of Carton House

The Gold Salon, where they normally hold the dinner reception was very nice.  The only problem is that it can only seat I think 28 people and the door that connects to the Old Drawing room beside it is so small. Nevertheless, the house was quite nice and very charming.

The next venue we checked was a castle in the town of Slane. Slane Castle was decked with christmas decors at that time. Unfortunately, the whole castle needed a lot of cleaning and a few repairs as it looked quite run down.


The ballroom upstairs was spacious though, and they also have their own Distillery.



The third venue we visited was 3 hours away from Dublin. The town is called Sligo, a coastal seaport northwest of Ireland. I saw Markree Castle online and loved how the photos looked like. True enough, it was indeed amazing in person.




It was what we pictured in our heads, a wedding in a castle! Sadly, there were 2 issues with this venue. First was the distance. But to be honest, it was something we could have managed and dealt with. The main issue, really, was the wedding coordinator of Markree Castle. She was not so accommodating and to top it off, our emails to her were bouncing back. It was actually something that we really had to think about – a beautiful venue but with difficult coordination.

The last venue we checked out was quite nice as well. Luttrellstown Castle, where David & Victoria Beckham got married, is situated beside a golf course yet had good privacy.


The ballroom had a good size and the exterior of the castle is just amazing. The wedding coordinator was also very nice and hospitable. Sadly, they only had a few rooms in the castle and only one main ballroom.

Thankfully, our venue hunting was pretty successful and surprisingly fun. We shortlisted three out of the four venues in Ireland. My next post will be the wedding venues we visited in Portugal. So til then, let me know which venue in Ireland you liked the most! 😉


Ooops sorry been gone

March 29, 2018

But I’m baaaack! Free bear hugs to make up for the 6 months.



Breathtaking Batanes

September 12, 2017

IMG_0757I can’t believe it took me this long to visit this wonderful place. Batanes, an archipelago province located in the northernmost part of the Philippines, is one of the most picturesque places I have been to here in my country. It’s actually closer to Taiwan than in Manila. We were quite lucky with the weather because September is a bit tricky when traveling in the Philippines as you will most likely get daily rain showers. We had 4 days of blue skies and sunshine, thus our unexpected tan lines.


There’s a lot of sightseeing in Batanes and it is broken down into municipalities. Basco, Mahatao, Ivana, Uyugan, Sabtang and Itbayat. We were able to visit everything but Itbayat because you will need to stay there overnight as they only have 1 boat that ferries daily.

Batanes is a bit pricey compared to other provinces in the Philippines. I guess because of its location, it is quite far from the mainland. It is still very much rural and fortunately well preserved, thanks to the Presidential Proclamation making Batanes the only province declared in its entirety as a protected landscape and seascape area.

Just a few things to expect when in Batanes:

  1. If you’re a Globe subscriber, expect to have no or little signal and no 3G or LTE. They say Smart subscribers have better signal in Batanes. Wifi is also not free, you will need to pay the hotel or restaurant for internet (P 150 for a few mbps only, quite expensive).
  2. Most hotels offer packaged tours with an air-conditioned van, lunch and a guide. But if you want to save more, you can hire a tricycle that can take you around (which is what we did) or you can rent bicycles from the town center.
  3. If you are a coffee lover (like us), there are probably only 2 cafes you can visit for a decent cup of coffee or latte. Harbour Cafe or Fundacion Pacita. They also serve yummy pasta if you get tired of eating local food.

On the third day, we visited  Sabtang which is in a different island. Don’t forget to pack a swimsuit because you can swim in some areas. We rented a small boat that took us to Vuhus Island, a 20 minute boat ride from Sabtang. We brought along some beers and snacks and just chilled in that island for an hour or so. On our last day, we hung out and took a quick dip at the Blue Lagoon (back in Basco).


Best time to visit is during summer or the dry ber months, however, they say it can get really packed. We were lucky that the weather was so nice and that there weren’t many tourists around. It felt like we had the whole place to ourselves.


The Philippines is soooo beautiful and I’m so happy I was able to see this great gem of an island called Batanes!

en route to Summer Sonic

August 28, 2017

When we found out that Foo Fighters was gonna play in Japan (one of my most favorite countries in Asia!), we instantly said YES. As we have been to Tokyo already, we decided to visit the other cities in Japan as well. So from Osaka, we took a bus to Kyoto, then a bullet train to Yokohama, which is just a train ride away from Tokyo. Definitely a fun week in the land of efficient transportation, delicious food and beautiful gardens and temples 🇯🇵

A few tips for some easy traveling around Japan:

✔️ Rent a Pocket Wifi or in our case, since we have our own pocket wifi, we just purchased an internet SIM card in the airport. Yes you can find free wifi in Japan but having sure connection wherever you go makes it so much easier especially if you need to check google maps for example.

✔️ Get a PASMO card which you can use for the train, bus and even to buy stuff. Before leaving Japan, you can dump all your coins and top up your PASMO card (which you can use on your next Japan trip).

✔️ The iced latte in convenient stores are so good and cheap. Better than the lattes in most Japanese cafes, in my opinion.


August 7, 2017

Been busy lately but now that I have a bit of time on my hands, here’s a short post about our trip to Sorsogon last May, Summer of 2017.

My friends and I stayed in a nice hotel called Siama. The aesthetic is quite nice, well thought of with a modern and sophisticated touch. However, the service was shit (just to put it plain and simple). Would have been nice if they had trained their staff well, better yet hire a hotel management consultancy. Though their breakfast spread was good so we were thankful and happy for that.

Sorsogon is a few hours away from Legaspi so it’s really quiet and serene. Nothing much to do here so a 1 to 2 nights stay will suffice. We checked out the islands and that was really nice — do rent a boat and bring your own food and bev (better if you can borrow a cooler from someone). We also visited the Fish Sanctuary and did the Fire Fly River Tour.

It was a good break from the city and I enjoyed spending quality time with my friends from Grade School. We have grown and somehow outgrown each other but when we got together, I realized that true friendships never end. These girls will always be special for me 💜


The Philippines is soooo beautiful and Sorsogon is just one of the lovely places you could see and visit in this great country.

So cheers and ’til my next island vacay! 👋🏼


Home improvement

June 12, 2017

Had my house renovated and it took us about half a year to complete it. I had fun doing this little project and I would like to share with you the finished product! This 3 bedroom house is now for rent, perfect for a small family. Looking forward to meeting my new tenants 🤗

Nite in

April 29, 2017


Watched Coldplay in Taiwan, and it was really awesome! ✨


Great experience… Thank you Coldplay for the music 🎹🎤🎸🥁🎼

Bali Birfday 🎂

April 21, 2017

Always nice to visit Bali! Had a wonderful time celebrating my birthday with my sister and her friend.


Went to the same old reliable places (Sea Circus, Potato HeadBebek JoniIbu OkaMade’s WarungWarung OchaSingle Fin) & visited new cafes and bars (La FavelaLa Plancha, BikuMotel Mexicola), danced every night and capped it off with a traditional Balinese massage.

Went around Ubud once again for the Rice Terraces and Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary and also checked out the Kecak Dance Ceremony in Uluwatu Temple (a must for tourists, i’d say!).

Fun times… I will see you again Bali! x

More is more?

March 6, 2017



SS2017 by hellokimber featuring coloured wine glasses
%d bloggers like this: