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    There is plenty that you might be keen on getting out of your travels. You might be interested in seeing cultures and how they differ, or maybe you have a soft spot for a particular people. Something that most people would agree on is that, wherever you go, hat you eat is always going to be a huge part of the experience. But for some, the food is more than that - it’s the whole point. If you are a real food lover and you are keen to experience some of the best in the world, then you might want to take a look at the following. Here are some of the world’s best locations for amazing food, including a few which you might never have considered or even heard of.

    This bustling and highly modernized city in Indonesia has plenty going for it, good and bad. But something that must be said for it is that it has one of the best foodie palettes that you will find anywhere in the world. Once you look past the truly bustling and bust nature of this metropolis, you start to find a food culture which can hardly be compared to quite anywhere, even some of its closest Asian neighbors. The cuisine is varied enough to be appreciated y most travellers and visitors, and for true foodies the city offers a splendid chance to experience some truly genuine and traditional food.

    As a city, it is a wonderful place to visit anyway. A brief glance through show you that it is both affordable and popular. Yet, it is the cuisine which really brings it alive, and there are a range of flavors which you can easily expect to taste in this diverse location. You will come across countless markets and street food vendors offering the best in Indonesian cuisine, meaning you are able to eat just as the locals do. But if you are a particularly cautious traveller, you do have the option of eating at a chain such as Sate Khas Senayan, who you can trust for their high levels of hygiene, but who will still offer you some of the best Indonesian food around. Given that there are 33 provinces throughout Indonesia, there are plenty of food styles for you to try, and most of them can be found within Jakarta’s city walls. This makes it a delightfully perfect destination for anyone wishing to have a foodie tour of the country, but without actually having to visit all of its corners.

    As is often the case with such modernized cities, if you are looking for other kinds of food too, then you will be in luck, you can also find French, Chinese, and some Western food dishes here, so if you want something that tastes a little more like home, you should have no trouble finding it. But it is in the traditional dishes served up by the vendors on the street where your taste buds will really be getting the full experience.

    It is often amazing just how many kinds of food there are in the world. When you stop and think about it, you have countless options to choose from, and a million different ways that people's across the planet deal with the same basic ingredients. The perfect example of this is how many different ways there are to cook and eat chicken, the most basic and yet most versatile of all meats. One of the world’s most famous and most adored treatments of this meat is the Jamaican way, something which you can experience in most cities around the world, thanks to the fact that there is always a Jamaican cafe to be found somewhere. Jerk chicken is, of course, a favorite, and we all know the tastes involved in such a dish. Or do we?

    Visiting Jamaicawill make you realize that you have never truly had jerk chicken until now. The range of spices in this dish can be incredibly diverse and even colorful, and it is a favorite for a reason. But if you visit Jamaica for its food, you will find many delights beyond the world-famous chicken dish and rice and peas. This beautiful country is also home to some of the most ingenious combinations of food you can find anywhere in the world. For a breakfast, you might consider having the national fruit, ackee, fried with a little codfish for a beautiful taste you would never have guessed could be possible to produce. For meat lovers, there is oxtail and even goat to devour, often enjoyed in hearty stews and broths bursting full of spicy flavor.


    Of course, no mention of the food of Jamaica would be complete without paying homage to its natural delicacies. This in many respects is a land of burgeoning fruits, and you will be able to discover all of the plentiful tropical fruits that you can imagine in this country. From pineapples and bananas onwards, you will find that there are a million fruits waiting to burst in your mouth. For a little something extra, also consider juicing them up for a soothing and cooling smoothie - ideal in that sun-laden paradise.

    Over to Europe, and we can see that one of the most popular tourist destinations is not actually well-known for its food. Yet, the historic culture within Germany means that you can expect to experience a delightful range of different tastes, including some which you might never have considered to be German. Along with a number of its close neighbors, the Germany food lovers tend to think of has a reputation for heavy and dense foods. Sure, there might be certain dishes which appear that way, but look under the surface and you find that Germany actually has much more to offer than is generally perceived to be the case. So what can you expect to eat if you do visit Germany this year?

    For a start, the obvious. You will likely be served a range of breads and pretzels, and you might need to get used to just how much bread there can be in a single sitting at any restaurant. Likewise, you will experience all of the strudels and sauces you would expect, although these are generally more flavorful than in many other imitations around the world. One of the nation’s food obsessions is the sausage, and the good news there is that over the years they have genuinely perfected how to make the perfect banger. What might surprise you is just how many ways they find to use the sausage in their dishes, ranging from casseroles and stews to more traditional and obvious incarnations. You can’t really visit Germany without trying a sausage or two, so make sure that you do.

    To wash it all down, you will find one of the greatest ranges of beer anywhere in the world. If you are particularly keen to experience the many kinds of beer (and to have it served in a traditional tankard), make sure to go in time or Oktoberfest or any of its other foodie festivals, as these are the perfect opportunity to try out a huge range of beers in one setting.

    For the vegetarian and even vegan there are a surprising number of hospitable eateries these days, and the Germans are quite adept at ensuring that you will be served dishes full of flavor and variation too. Put simply, Germany is a country where you can expect some of the world’s best food cooked to perfection (and just to your liking), and for some of the lower prices anywhere in Europe.

    Back over to Asia, and we have here one of the world’s greatest food hotspots that you can possibly experience. If you have never visited Burma, you will find it to be the kind of travelling that really affects you. The culture shock and trying to get around alone can be really quite something, particularly if you are not a frequent traveller. However, it is worth it just if you get to eat some of the local food - a delightful range of highly spiced and hugely flavorful dishes, served still in many traditional forms which you might never have seen anywhere else in the world, even in some of its closest neighbors.

    Burma can offer the traveller a completely unique food style like no other, but close cousins perhaps to Thai or Vietnamese. Forget what you think you know about Asian food; whatever you might have expected, Burma has a way of throwing these expectations into the air in such a way that you don’t know quite what is going to happen in your tastebuds next. A truly fascinating and varied experience which you won’t find anywhere else in the world.

    A foodie tour of the world is up there on many bucket lists, but choosing the locations can be hard to do. The above are just a taster of the sorts of areas which might be suitable, but with true extensive travelling you will be bound to find yet more besides which you can then report back to friends and family, and spread the word and share the love.

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    It’s one of those terms that every creative has heard at one time or another, finding your voice. It’s a difficult concept. Sometimes we can spend years trying to find the one thing that we can talk about at length or the one passion that has escaped us all this time, apart from blogging, of course. But while writers talk about the graft of creation, the craft of gathering thoughts, what do you need behind you to ensure that you are in a suitable space (physically or mentally) in which to blog your heart out?

    The Financial Comfort

    Some would argue that this is irrelevant, but when it comes to running a successful blogging business, you can’t be expected to write about living the high life when you have barely the bus fare to get home? Granted, there are those who need the fuel of poverty to motivate them, but when you’re running a business where the content needs to come thick and fast, this isn’t a realistic approach to take for every single blog. If you find yourself consumed by debt and financial worries which distract from your writing (and we’ve all been there!), then it’s worth looking at the short term business loan rates that can benefit you. You don’t have to borrow piles of money so you can stay shut in the dark and churning out blog after blog, but if you can find a way to keep financial peace of mind at bay, then you are more focused to do the work you really want to do!

    The Place Where You Can Work

    Business owners speak of productivity in all of its forms, and one of the biggest factors to productivity is the working environment. You know where you work best, and if you find that being barricaded away in a home office is what you need, then you must follow that rule for yourself. The right place, whether it’s a cafe or on the couch, can make a big difference in how you work. Try a few different places, and see how much more you can get done. It’s not even just the space. Sometimes, you can work better if you find a manner that suits you. Maybe you write better when you think on your feet. In which case, voice typing is the tool for you!

    The Topic

    Sometimes we all have difficulty in finding the right words, but the solution is most likely that you aren’t focused enough on what you want to achieve by this blog post. The importance of finding your niche has an impact on your tone of voice, and if you find yourself being too general about a topic, then you’re not focused enough, and your writing stays very “general.” This isn’t a bad thing, per se, but if you are doing your best to get a blog out there, and you want traffic to drive numbers up, then you’ve got to nail down with spikes exactly what you want to discuss.

    This is a contributed post.

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    If you’re a blogger, you are probably familiar with metrics such as web traffic and time spent on page as a mean to measure your success and popularity. For a lot of blog writers, Google Analytics has become a close friend that is checked on a daily basis in order to figure out the readership of each post. However, it doesn’t matter how long you’ve spent preparing the last post and research your keywords; it isn’t always enough to boost your blog’s popularity. Have you considered the possibility of giving your audience a different blogging format to engage with? Instead, more and more online users choose to engage with video posts instead of text. Here’s how to offer a vlogging experience to your audience.

    Learn from the best

    You can’t vlog if you’ve never observed what professional and successful vloggers do. Take Zoella as an example. She’s incredibly popular  – so much in fact that you can find her wax effigy at Madame Tussauds – and she’s developed an effective vlogging network. How did she do it? Zoella has made the most of the existing network so that by becoming an active part of it and promoting its actors, she can also benefit from a promotional nudge from other vloggers.You will come across famous other vloggers in her video posts, which is the way Zoella can reach a broader audience.  

    Get the equipment you need

    Admittedly, belonging to a wide community is only helpful if you’ve got the equipment you need to start your vlogging presence. Indeed, vloggers need to share high-quality videos via YouTube, in other words, you can abandon your idea of using a smartphone camera. You will need to invest in the appropriate technology, using your savings or even a signature loan. Don’t let questions such as “what is a signature loan”? stop your plan. Indeed, there is a variety of options to gather the necessary fundings. A signature loan allows you to take an unsecured loan where using savings might disrupt your emergency funds.


    Practice your camera presence

    Video content is more engaging because people prefer to watch than to read. However, it doesn’t mean that vloggers have it easy. You need to practice being in front of a camera so that you can remove all errors, hesitation and uncertainty. All it takes is making a video of yourself, identifying your weaknesses and trying again. You can start in front of a mirror to get used to your image. You will also need to experiment standing, sitting and using a tripod to find the setting that works for you.

    What can you use for your vlog?

    Finally; the biggest of all questions: what is the best topic for a vlog? If you’ve got a long-established blog, why not create a relevant string of 5 5-second-long clips to add a 5x5 vignette? This can work wonders to boost your presence. You can also make a how-to tutorial video, which is always a hit online. If you know an expert and would like to share their views, you can even organise an interview.

    Vlogging doesn’t have to be a full-time change of career. But it can certainly boost your blog presence and attract new readers when it’s done successfully. You may not become the new Zoella. But you can reach a wider audience with video posts.

    This is a contributed post.

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    There’s something wonderful about watching big sporting events live in person. You get to see the action unfold in front of your eyes and feel the excitement that comes with the occasion. But which sporting events around the world should you experience ahead of the others? That’s what we’re going to provide some answers to right now. So read on to find out which live events are best for spectators.

    The NBA Finals
    Going to a regular season NBA game can be fun, but nothing’s better than heading to a finals match when the stakes are really high and the result really matters. The Championship Final is obviously the best finals game to attend, but if you can’t get to that, each of the conference finals are great as well. There are plenty of games that take place in the postseasonplayoff finals, so take your pick.

    Final Day at the Masters
    The final day at the Masters is where it all comes to a head and you find out who will reign supreme. Anyone who has even the faintest interest in golf should attend this day because it’s one of the biggest and most interesting in the sporting calendar. Never let anyone tell you golf can’t be exciting while the Masters is still around.

    The Monaco Grand Prix
    Monaco is one of the most glamorous places in the world, and it’s worth visiting regardless of your interest in sports. But while you’re there, it’s certainly worth checking out the Monaco Grand Prix. It takes place in the streets, making it out as different to all the other F1 Grand Prix races. BAC Sportcan help you with a package deal, so make sure you check it out one season.

    The Olympic Games (Or Winter Olympics)
    The Olympic Games only come around every four years, so if you get the chance to attend, you should go for it. There are only going to be so many of these that take place in your adult lifetime, so grab the chance. Alternatively, there’s the Winter Olympics, and watching the ski jumping can be incredibly exhilarating when you’re there live.

    The Wimbledon Final
    Wimbledon is without question the biggest and most prestigious event in the world of tennis. If you have a soft spot for the sport, you’re going to need to head to one of the competition’s finals one year. It’s an experience you’ll never forget. You’ll be watching an elite tier athlete lifting perhaps the most important trophy of their entire career.


    A Champions League Fixture
    In football terms, there is no competition greater than the Champions League in the club sport. The final takes place in a new city each year, and it’s often possible for neutrals to get tickets, so why wait into the team you support makes it all the way to a final? It’s an incredible spectacle whether you have a horse in the race or not.

    There are so many fantastic sports events that happen each year, and the six events mentioned here should all be on your sporting bucket list. Each of them offers something different in terms of the spectator experience and the fun that can be had by attending in person as opposed to watching on TV.

    This is a contributed post.

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    If you want to get hair and skin like the Victoria’s Secret Angels (and basically, who doesn’t?) then you need to get the information right from the horse’s mouth, so to speak. While they may have professionals helping them on the day of a shoot or show, they will all still have things that they will be doing from time to time when they are at home. That glossy hair and dewy skin doesn’t get there all by itself! So here are some of the tips, tricks, and hacks that the angels do as part of their regular beauty regime. Are there any that you’d like to adopt?

    Bella Hadid
    The whole Hadid family never seem to age, and they have such glossy hair and flawless skin. But angel Bella, reportedly goes weeks at a time without wearing makeup, or minimal makeup at least. Doing so can give your skin what it needs, and act as a bit of a detox for your skin. She is an avid drinker of water, which can help get glowing, clear, and dewy skin (something that we can do more at home really easily).

    As well as going bare-faced from time to time, she also reportedly uses skin masks, and even makes her own with natural ingredients. The same goes for hair, using hair masks often too. Having dry and dull hair is not going to cut it as a Victoria’s Secret angel. So if you find that your hair is pretty dry and dull looking, how about adding in a hair mask to your beauty regime? You could even look for a good dry scalp treatment if you suffer with dandruff. An itchy head is never going to be a good look. Coconut oil can work wonders for your hair too.

    Alessandra Ambrosio
    The brunette beauty Alessandra has some of the best skin around. And the reason why? She is safe in the sun! When you’re out in the sunshine a lot, too many UV rays can cause damage to your skin and speed up the aging of your skin as it will reduce your skin’s elasticity. So using a sunscreen, or even just a foundation with an SPF factor, is really important. Using it every day can be just what your skin needs to get it look its best. This can also help to keep your skin hydrated.

    Serums, lotions, and natural products that are aloe vera based can work wonders on your skin, especially after being in the sun, as well as help to fight premature aging.

    Sara Sampaio
    The beauty from Portugal has some of the best hair, with dark, shiny locks. So it makes no surprise that haircare is her main concern when she is in her own time. Having a busy schedule modelling can mean a lot of products get used on her hair, and there is nothing worse than going to bed with your hair full of all sorts. It can clog your pores, lead to breakouts, and a dry scalp. So showing each night can be a good idea if you have a lot of product in your hair, or have used lots of hairspray, for instance.

    Finding a good conditioner can be the thing that makes or breaks your hair too; no one wants one that leaves your hair feeling too greasy. Look for ones that are sulphite-free and contain as many natural ingredients as possible.

    Candice Swanepoel
    The South African blonde knows how to take care of her skin; have you ever seen such beautiful skin? From her African roots, she will know just how important a good skincare routine is, especially when out in the sun. But once work is over and the makeup comes off, taking care of your skin is really important. If you like to wear quite a bit of makeup, then it could be a good idea to follow her advice. She told Vogue Magazine last year that she likes to use ointments like melaleuca oil (or tea tree oil in layman's terms), as it is completely natural to use but it does have natural antibacterial properties. So it is great to have as part of your routine, especially if you are prone to breakouts.

    Are you doing any of these things already as part of your skincare routine? A lot of it isn’t anything new necessarily, but it is just a case of making it a daily habit, and not just an occasional thing. It would be great to hear what you think!

    This is a contributed post.

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    While one of the pillars of Southeast Asia probably needs no introduction, let’s briefly talk about that magical place known as Malaysia. If Malaysia has never been on your radar as a holiday destination, it very much should be. Whether you want to spend your afternoon in a stunning mega-mall that spans several floors or walk around in some of the local parks, Kuala Lumpur has you sorted. Not only is Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, a beautiful and diverse place in its own right, full of attractions which is bound to attract any tourist or adventurer alike, the rest of the country is a treasure just as well. However, before we get started on conquering all of Malaysia, let’s start at one of the prime time destinations, aka Kuala Lumpur itself. If you have not visited before, then it should be more than enough to keep you occupied for an indefinite amount of time.

     Image source: Pexels

    Let’s start at the top
    If we’re gonna start anywhere, let’s start at the top. The literal top of course, and by that we are of course talking about the Menara Kuala Lumpur, also known as the Kuala Lumpur Tower. This tower stands at an astounding 335 meters and comes complete with a handy observation deck to let you witness Kuala Lumpur from its highest point in all its glory. The tower is not only a pleasant tourist attraction but also serves as a ceremonious place used for spotting the moon to mark the start of the holy Muslim month of Ramadan. In fact, once a year a race to the top takes place to promote health and fitness, so not only is it a pretty tourist attraction, it is deeply integrated into the city’s life making it all the more meaningful.

    And now for something completely different
    From the top, to the almost underground. Just outside of Kuala Lumpur in a suburb named Selangor, you can find the Batu Caves. The Batu Caves are essentially a gigantic set of limestone cliffs which have been repurposed several times through the years, once serving as a Hindu shrine and series of temples, but now mostly just known as a tourist attraction. Although, they are still considered important places of pilgrimage for the Tamil residents of Malaysia. If just walking around is not really your speed, there are more rock climbing opportunities than you can shake a stick at scattered around the cliffs, over 160 to be precise, so if you’re up for an adventure, you know where to go.

    Thean Hou Temple
    Staying on the topic of spirituality and importance to the people, why not explore the iconic Thean Hou Temple which is probably one of the most decorative temples the world has ever seen in recent history. The intricate decorative pieces all over the walls and ceiling most definitely garner quite a crowd on a regular basis so do not feel like it would be awkward to walk in to the temple as a tourist. Considering the temple has Buddhist, Confucian and Taoist symbology and decoration scattered around inside, the temple sports traditional beautiful red pillars around it to promote prosperity and welcome its visitors. Because they sure do know that they will have a lot of those.

    Image source: Pexels

    Back to the city
    If you’ve had enough of holy places and temples for now, why not hit the mall for some good ol’ wandering around and shopping as well as window shopping. Sometimes there is just nothing better than stopping by a gigantic mall and watching your wallet deflate, sitting around drinking coffee and milkshakes one minute then admiring the pretty displays when going up escalators the next. If that sounds like something you would be interested in, then the Suria KLCC complex is probably the place for you. It is a staggeringly large shopping centre which spans over a whole six storeys. Whether you want to go around looking for some fancy new clothes, catch up on the latest tech walking around computer stores and phone shops, or even possibly buy some furniture on your holiday to mail back home, you are bound to find something for you. Not to mention, this is the perfect place to go and pick up some quality souvenirs for all your friends and family back home. After all, would be a shame to go all that way to Malaysia and not bring anything back.

    Image source: Pexels

    A fluttering change of pace
    If you’ve had enough capitalism and busy shopping centres for now, why not head over to the Kuala Lumpur Butterfly Park? If you have not already guessed from the name, the park proudly keeps hundreds of stunning colourful butterflies flying around everywhere. Most definitely a photo opportunity if there ever was one, and with more than 120 species of butterflies flying around you certainly won’t run out of things to put on your Instagram. Definitely a must-see for all nature and animal lovers.

    Grab a bite somewhere
    If you want to go and taste some authentic street cuisine from Kuala Lumpur, there is no better place to head off to than Alor Street. Alor Street has a history as rich as its food menus, being infamous as a red light district with a somewhat questionable reputation, but over the years they have cleaned up their act and now it is known as a culinary hotspot in the city. If you plan on visiting, spare yourself the disappointment and visit during the evening when all the fun people come out. Most of the stall owners and vendors come out when the sun starts setting, slowly introducing everyone into the evening laid-back mood of fun and relaxation.  Of course, no Kuala Lumpurian culinary visit would be complete without trying out some of the local Nasi Kandar. Meaning quite literally “mixed rice”, the dish is as simple as it is delicious, being a well established iconic dish of Kuala Lumpur which came from its South Indian population.

     Image source: Pexels

    Get lost in the side streets
    There’s no fun in exclusive sticking to the main path and following the touristic signs with the occasional photo taking, sure it’s great for what it is, but it doesn’t allow you to see what the place you are visiting is truly like. Go and see how the locals live their lives, where they go to pick up some tea or coffee, and where they live. Check out the local architecture and if you just so happen to like it a bit more than you expected, you can check out the house prices in Malaysia and possibly even find yourself a new home. It is most definitely an exotic location which is rather different compared to the average western city, but it is westernised enough that you will still feel right at home. A cultural hotspot full of everything you can think of, from beautiful nature parks, to busy shopping malls, to mystical and revered temples and mysterious caves filled with bats and majestic cliffs full of temples, you certainly are not lacking variety in a place like this. Considering its rich heritage and diverse cultures, Kuala Lumpur is definitely one interesting place to live in, and you might not only find new business opportunities, new employment and new sights, but you might just find yourself anew, amidst the busy side streets of Kuala Lumpur. If you need some more time to think then why not head back to the Kuala Lumpur Tower and look over the city, seeing if it's welcoming you with open arms.

    This is a contributed post.

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    The largest state in southern America, Texas is a popular destination for those taking their annual summer road trip. With popular sights, such as the Alamo, the Rio Grande, and the Space Center in Houston, there is much to see and do. Yet, there are some hidden gems as well; those places that are not as well known but are still deserving of your time. In this article, we will list a few of them, so if you are building up your savings to head onto the extensive highways of the Lone Star State anytime soon, be sure you add some of these places to your itinerary.

    Starting in Austin
    There is no better place to start than Austin, so book yourself into a decent hotel - we recommend a stay in the Comfort Suites Pflugerville - Austin North - and consider the following places to visit.

    A Place To Eat
    There are loads of options, but on the quirky side of things, we recommend one of the many food trucks. Now, we know what you’re thinking - the food has to be low quality right? Not if you visit Regal Ravioli in downtown Austin. For a whole range of Italian food made entirely from scratch, you can eat everything from ravioli (of course) to meatball subs and pasta with an incredible range of sauces. Delicious… and cheaper than any fancy restaurant.

    A Place To Laugh
    If you are in the mood for some comedy, then head to the Hideout Theatre on the corner of 7th and Congress. Honestly, it’s well-named as people often walk right past it apparently, but continuing our hidden gem theme, make sure you don’t. If you love improv comedy, this is the place to be. You could visit time and again, as the shows are completely improvised and inspired by the audience reactions. With a fab coffee and pastry shop on site, you are guaranteed a good giggle.

    Heading To San Antonio

    You could go to SeaWorld, or visit the Alamo Mission, but in the search for something a little different, consider…

    Two Places To Conquer Your Fears
    There are plenty of animal attractions to visit, but if you ever wanted to overcome your fear of snakes, check out the Texas Snake Farm. Just off the highway in New Braunfels, there are slithery snakes galore. Check out the interactive shows, or if you are of a less nervous disposition, get hands on at the petting zoo and give one of these slippery devils a cuddle (under supervision of course).

    Then, if your nerves are still holding up, take one of the San Antonio Ghost Tours. As this is one of the the oldest cities in America, you are bound to stir up a few old bones (even if they are just your own). The Alamo City Ghost Tour is popular, but we recommend the Sisters Grimm Tour instead. From darkened streets to a stay in a haunted hotel, you can scare yourself silly or just have a good laugh at those poor saps who jump at shadows.

    Finally In Houston
    Finally, here is one hidden gem you can easily bypass. You could go to the Space Center, and you could also spend all day at the waterpark. But if you did, you would miss out on this very hidden (and totally frivolous) hidden gem...


    Sometimes, it is the simple things in life that are just so much fun!

    Over To You
    Are there any hidden gems in Texas we have missed? Press all of our curious buttons and let us know. Thanks for reading!

    This is a contributed post.

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    If you are a fan of Asian cuisine, why not embark on a culinary journey and experience the authentic tastes of different countries and cultures this year. There are plenty of hidden gems in Asia you will need to see to believe. Whether you’re keen on street food, or want to learn some traditional recipes, you might start looking for destinations to put on your food map. From real Indian cuisine in the North of the country to tasting rice balls in China, there are plenty of tasty experiences awaiting. If you are undecided which country’s food is your favorite, you can find some tips by reading the below list of culinary cities.

    1. Tokyo

    Image via Jezael Melgoza

    If you are keen on five-star restaurants, you will find plenty in Tokyo, Japan. There are more Michelin Star restaurants in Japan than any other country, and this tells you a lot about the love of food embedded in the culture. From sushi places to modern pork cutlets, you can try some of the best seafood dishes in Tokyo. There is always something going on in this city, and - if you are bored with looking at and climbing the skyscrapers that made modern Toyo famous, you could find a hidden gem dish in a local pub or an elegant rooftop restaurant. Whatever your appetite and budget is, Tokyo can cater for your needs.

    2.  Fukuoka, Japan

    In case you would like to familiarize yourself with the street food offerings of Japan, you must visit Fukuoka, where you’ll find over 15 open food stands to try. These stalls, called yatai look like miniature restaurants, and most of them have a folding-up structure. Open all day, until late at night, you can always find something new and hot to ease your hunger whenever you are taking a break from sightseeing and shopping. These restaurants offer great soups and finger food, such as Tonkotsu ramen, a broth-like dish, or yakitori, resembling traditional chicken skewers.

    3. Hanoi, Vietnam

    The Vietnamese culture is rich in traditions, and food can change if you move just fifty miles up or down the map. To get a real taste of the country, your best bet for a culinary holiday in Vietnam is visiting Hanoi, the birthplace of some of the most popular dishes in the country. The first food item you must get your hands on is Bun cha, or sliced roasted pork belly. As with every dish in Vietnam, you will be served a selection of side dishes and condiments. If you try Bun cha in a restaurant, expect to get deep-fried spring rolls and rice vermicelli.

    4.  Jaipur, India

    Image via Ravi Shekhar

    Also called the “Pink City”, Jaipur is one of the cultural centers or the North of the country. The famous Asian chef, Vivek Sing lived and worked in the city in the 1990s. If you are after a traditional Rajahstani curry, you will find many restaurants serving it on the rooftop. The Pink city’s downtown is pretty at night, and - as only pink buildings are allowed - the light shining on the houses looking from the rooftop restaurants will provide you with a unique photo opportunity.

    5.  Bangkok, Thailand

    Image via Wanaporn Yangsiri

    There are more than one reasons to visit Bangkok. While it is a popular scene of bachelor parties and cultural tourism, you must taste the city to fully embrace its traditions. You will find that lemongrass is a popular ingredient, and is added to most of the dishes; hot or cold, sweet or savory.

    6.   Singapore

    Whether you are on a business trip or looking for a place to call your home after retirement, Singapore has plenty on offer. From great entertainment and nightlife, to elegant restaurants, street food, and friendly people, you are sure to fall in love with the country. In case you would like to experience the best of Singapore’s hospitality, you can find a room for rent in Singapore and find out for yourself what makes locals smile all day. You will be glad to know that the food safety and hygiene regulations in the country are among the strictest, and this applies to street food, as well as dishes served in five-star restaurants. Try the Chili crab, one of the signature dishes of the country, often served with toasted buns. If you are hungry after a long day of roaming the streets, you will always find a place serving Satay; marinated skewers with peanut sauce.

    7. Chengdu, China

    Spice lovers will feel at home in Chengdu. The fiery cuisine offers more for the tastebuds than any other Chinese destination. The good news is that if you overdose on the spices, you will always find a teahouse where you can compensate for the burst of flavors. You can find chillied chicken, as well as duck tongue, and plenty of strange vegetables to try the first time.

    8.   Jakarta, Indonesia

    There are plenty of reasons you should visit Jakarta. First of all, it is full of culture and traditions. Second, you can taste Asia in one city. The country’s cuisine has borrowed several dishes and modified them from its neighbors. Move between provinces, and you will find a completely new palette of dishes altogether. You can find street food, modern Indonesian restaurants, and international diners as well.

    9.  Burma

    One of the most popular food destinations, Burma has some truly unique dishes you should try. Why being famous for the Rohingya crisis in the past few years, the country is welcoming and traditional at the same time. You can try Mohingya for breakfast, a fish soup with fritters. The Burmese version of the Byriani is also delicious; with chicken slow cooked and mixed with spices and rice. When you’re on the streets, don’t forget to pick up some Pe Byouk (boiled peas) with fresh bread. A deep fried stuffed tofu is another popular street food option, and has chillies, vegetables, and a spicy sauce on top.

    10.   Penang, Malaysia

    Street food is called hawker food in Penang, and it is very colorful. You can taste the influence of different cultures in every dish, when you visit the Nyonya district and try its cuisine. You will not only find individual vendors lining the streets, but also hawker centers where you can try everything you always wanted to taste. If you are looking to sit down, there are great local coffee shops to accommodate your more traditional taste. Try Wonton Mee, made with noodles, soy sauce, green chillies, and Chinese kale. Lor Bak is minced pork served with two different dipping sauces, and resembles spicy meat balls.

    11.  Seoul, South Korea

    The bad news is that you might find it hard to find street food in Soeul; street carts are illegal. However, vendors are hard to deter, and they often set up their pop up covered trucks in busy shopping districts. If you are hungry for some authentic food, ask a local for directions to “Pojangmacha”, and follow your nose. If you are looking for an evening meal in the restaurant, you must try soyu, a spirit that is often consumed alongside with meals. Try the rice cakes called Ttekbokki, or Odeng (tasty fishcakes) and Gamja-dog, a corn dog with a Korean twist.

    12.   Xi’an, China

    While this spot in China is most famous for the finding of the Terracotta Warriors, its culinary scene is also worth a mention. The Muslim influence is clearly visible in the city, and you can find small restaurants on every corner, offering cheap and high quality traditional dishes. Visit the Muslim Quarter to explore some of the best lamb dishes, or the night markets to find authentic street food. Try Majiang liang pi, or sesame noodles with a black sauce, served cold. The Xi’an version of lamb kebabs is called Yang rou chuan, and is a traditional Muslim street snack. One of the must-try dishes is the Babao meigui jing gao, or rose mirror cake. It is made of sticky rice, and served with a sweet sauce.

    13.  Manila, Philippines

    Image via Bash Carlos

    Manila offers the perfect scene for fine dining and street food as well. Most dishes offered by street vendors are deep fried, and you can find some supers weet desserts to die for on every corner. The must-try dish is Balut, or fertilized duck eggs. While this might not be for everyone, if you are looking for a unique taste, you might give it a chance. For a more familiar cuisine, you can try Kwek Kwek, or battered hard boiled eggs. The brave can even get their hands on barbecued intestines, called Isaw. I case you would like to play safe, try the fish balls instead.

    Food lovers will find something to fall in love with in every corner of Asia. If you have been thinking about a culinary holiday in Asia, pick one of the above destinations, and eat like the locals for a while. Whether you prefer street food or fine dining, Asia will meet your expectations. There is no better way of exploring a country’s traditions, customs, and culture than tasting its food and eating with locals.

    This is a contributed post.

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    Most people think that traveling is the best way to escape life’s stresses and strains and monotonous bleeps, but we disagree. The best way to escape these little niggles is to have a holiday home. It’s having that home away from home, one you can make totally and utterly yours. It’s having that little slice of paradise in some faraway hotspot, where you have friends, know the local restaurant owners and know how to make your journey there so hassle-free it puts your morning commute to shame. It’s being able to run off to somewhere totally different and yet perfectly familiar. It’s the ultimate in luxury living.

    But for all the blissful living you get to sit back and soak up, there are still some super-duper-important considerations you need to take into account before you pull out your purse, pop your name on the dotted line and snap up a property to use as a holiday home.

    That’s why we have pulled together this list. It’s to help you make holiday-home-buying even less stressful than your last grocery shop. Trust us, when it comes to purchasing a second-home abroad, nothing is worse than making the wrong decision. Thankfully, this guide should make it a think of the past.

    1. Location Really Is Everything

    Forget what little details you are craving; the most valuable factor to think about - and then think about a whole lot more - is the location. It’s where all good things stem from. It’s where you will get the most joy when it comes to your every vacation and where you will get the most returns should you decide to let your property out when you’re not there. That doesn’t just mean choosing the right country or region either, it means where the established markets are, where the tourist hotspots are, how far it is away from basic provisions and lovely restaurants and what the plot offers, whether that be a pool, a beach walk or a cityscape.

    2. Deposits Need To Be Big

    There is no denying that you will get more bang for your buck in an overseas property than you would be buying into an establish metropolia like a New York or London. But that doesn’t mean you can escape handing over a large sum of money as a down payment. Yeah. You’re still going to need to have a nice dollop of cash tucked away somewhere. Of course, how much you need will all depend on the country you’re looking at. Take Spain as a prime example of a country where 30% deposits are not uncommon. So, know where you’re buying and then know what’s expected of you.

    3. Think Future Currency Rates

    Unfortunately, buying a holiday home isn’t the same as buying a bag of salted cashews from Lidl in that it can take months to finally get the keys to a property. This makes it pretty hard to predict what the currency rate is going to do because, if the last couple of years are anything to go by, currencies can drop 15 percent in the wake of political headlines. That can make your property a whole lot more expensive than you thought. Don’t worry, there is a simple solution to this and it’s called a forward currency contract. It’s a super-simple agreement that every reliable broker will offer and basically lets you buy a foreign currency at a fixed rate.

    4. Do Tons And Tons Of Research

    The moment you think you’ve found your dream home, make sure you reign in your emotions, put your optimism to the bottom of the pile and start doing all the in-depth research you can because, trust us, it’s the smaller print and finer details that can really sting you. If you are buying somewhere far off and exotic like the South Pacific, you might want to read this article at understand the different building rights and how to get a certificate of property, while buying in France can come with all sorts of odd caveats and laws that mean you never actually own your home, which is why you need to do your research. Make sure the vendor definitely owns the deeds, make sure there are deeds, do a thorough structural review and bring in a legal team. Anything that will help you rest well at night. Oh, and speak to other expats that have bought in the area to see if they had any issues when picking up a hot property.

    5. Taxes Play A Big Role

    One of the biggest factors that always seem to wangle its way out of the calculations is the tax. Don’t make this mistake. It could cripple your dreams if you do. It might be that you are buying in a country where property taxes are relatively insignificant. However, you might be wanting to buy a holiday home in France and that means you’ll be expected to pay around 7.5% of the property’s value in taxes and fees. If these seem a lot, it is, but it’s made up of a property 5% transfer tax (think stamp duty), as well as solicitors fees, which can be as much as 3% of the property’s value. Whatever your budget, it’s a large chunk of change to overlook.

    6. Independent Advice Only, Please

    When you’re sat in the estate agents office and wondering where you’re going to get your mortgage-slash-legal advice from before you sign on the dotted line, don’t be tempted to use one that has been suggested to you by the agents. Instead, go with a regulated lawyer or advisor that speaks both languages fluently. Getting good advice is sooooo important when it comes to the purchase of a property, so don’t risk it with an unlicensed lawyer an impartial advisor. Our advice would be: whatever procedures you went through when buying your home at home, stick to them this time around too. That means using independent lawyers, getting independent valuations, enjoying independent mortgage advice and anything else that you feel is necessary. The reason for this is simple: by cutting corners, you have everything to lose and nothing to be gained. Schimples.

    This is a contributed post.

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