Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Nau Ubud Villa: Resort Living at its Finest

Famous for its ancient temples, rice terraces, and a treasure trove of cultural landmarks, Ubud have been on the top of my list ever since I started planning for our romantic getaway. We stayed in a private villa in Seminyak during our first trip to Bali but we wanted a more local feel, away from the busy streets of Seminyak, so we chose Ubud this time. Besides, we were on our first leg of our honeymoon so privacy + luxury were the main factors we took into consideration.

Open-air lobby for guests to better appreciate the beauty of nature.

The BEST welcome drink ever! This refreshing cucumber-based drink is my staple order in every meal. We even asked for its recipe but shame that we forgot it in our villa when we left Ubud.

Nau Fresh

The entire place is truly beautiful and every corner is as picture perfect as it is shown on their website. As plants and trees are abundant, applying mosquito-repellent lotion is a must. Appreciate that the resort thought of placing complimentary bottles per villa so guests can protect themselves especially that booking a candlelit dinner is a must-try here in Nau.
 

There are only 2 types of villa available for booking - one bedroom and one bedroom luxury, both with private pools but with the latter having an infinity pool and outdoor bath tub overlooking the rice terraces. So if you have the budget, booking the luxury villa is no-brainer decision to make.

Other room amenities and services are as follow: 
 
  • 160sqm floor area with king size bed
  • Welcome fruit basket and snacks
  • Butler and tour services
  • Complimentary high speed WiFi
  • LCD television with international cable channels
  • In-room coffee and tea making facility





To be frank, I actually had a love/hate relationship with this outdoor toilet and bath set mostly in natural stone sourced locally. While it was the perfect setting for a romantic tub experience with the husband, night time frightened me whenever I had to use the toilet with only a few potted plants and a bamboo wall setting me apart from the darkness outside the property.




 The best part of the villa.
 
 
Breakfast in the pool is always a great idea. Unlike in other resorts, Nau does not charge extra if you prefer to have your breakfast in the comfort of your villa, or in this case, in your private pool.
 
 
 
 
Afternoon tea is complimentary for all guests and we always look forward to the local snacks and desserts that they serve. Our top favorites were Pisang Goreng (fried banana with coconut flakes and honey) and Klepon (chewy glutinous rice balls filled with molten palm sugar).
 
 
 
 
Pros: Gorgeous place, comfortable stay, warm service, cheap and delicious food, private pool in each villa, and complimentary shuttle service to downtown area.

Cons: Nothing as we were treated like royalties from the moment we step foot in the resort.
 
~o~o~o~

Nau Ubud Villa
Banjar, Sebatu Village, Ubud
Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia
Tel.: (62) 361-908-3852
Website: https://nauvillaubud.com

Monday, February 8, 2021

Mt. Fuji - Hakone One Day Tour by JTB

Doing DIY tours is usually the cheaper option when traveling but not the case when you go to Japan. I've never been a huge fan of organized tours but I welcomed the idea of joining one in Japan especially when traveling far from the city as it was more convenient and saved time and money because public transportation can be quite a challenge unless you speak the local language. For the Mt. Fuji-Hakone day tour, we chose JTB, one of Japan's largest travel service provider.

Back in 2018, the English guided tour costs around USD170/person inclusive of the following:

  • Trip to Mt. Fuji's 5th Station 
  • Cruise on the pristine Lake Ashi
  • Ride to Komagatake Ropeway which offers a majestic view of Hakone National Park
  • Bus ride from Shinjuku and return via Shinkansen from Odawara Station back to Tokyo
  • Local lunch



















Pros: Very organized and enjoyable tour, clean and well-maintained bus, no hidden fees, no forced commission-based shopping stops, delicious Japanese lunch, tour guide was polite and spoke good English, and with Shinkansen one-way ticket back to Tokyo.

Cons: Nothing -- this tour is highly recommended!

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Tsukiji Market: A Seafood Lover's Heaven

You'll never know great sushi if you've never visited Tsukiji Market in Tokyo, Japan.


There's a little confusion here when news came out that Tsukiji Market already transferred locations in October 2018 but take note that it was the inner wholesale market (famous for the tuna auctions) which moved but the outer market, with all the quaint shops and local restaurants, is still in its original location. Most shops are closed on Sundays so schedule your visit accordingly.
 
Best time to visit is early morning when everything's still available for you to try. The outer market consists of shops selling a variety of products/items such as freshly-sliced sashimi, fruits and vegetables, sushi knives and other kitchen utensils, pastries and desserts, Wagyu beef, and many more delicious food finds! Scroll down to see for yourself.



















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