Iceland

Pinoy Taste Reykjavík

There are about 1,500 Filipinos living in Iceland, and underground chef Raquel Landayan thinks she's Facebook friends with most of them. Every day, the 1,100 users who have "friended" her Pinoy Taste Reykjavík account see glistening, soft-filtered photos of the dishes she and her husband, Arie Bob Riesenbeck, cook in their Breiðholt home. There might be kutsinta stacked like bronze coins, hot pandesal flecked green with malunggay, or vacuum-packed tocino, red and ready for frying.

The Happy Home Cook: Cabalen Maki

"Cabalen" is the kapampangan equivalent of "kabayan" — a term of affection for those who share your homeland. Both words become especially meaningful when you're living in one of the thinnest-spread corners of the Filipino diaspora, like chef and recipe contributor Raquel Landayan. Born in Lubao, Pampanga, she has spent most of the last 13 years in Reykjavík, Iceland, where she works as a sushi chef at the Hilton Hotel and spends her free time running an underground Filipino catering company with her husband. She invented this fusion dish at her day job and hopes to serve it at the restaurant she dreams of opening.

The Happy Home Cook: Rhubarb and Fish Sinigang

Though more often used in desserts than in savory applications, rhubarb has little of its own sweetness. The unadulterated flavor and souring power of rhubarb is comparable to that of fresh kamias. If you don’t like to see rhubarb in your sabaw, you can add it to the pot in a cheesecloth, then press it to squeeze out the sour juice before serving the dish. I like to leave it in; when cooked, rhubarb has a mild flavor and gentle chew that fits in nicely with the other ingredients in this recipe.

Memoirs Of A Spring Breaker, Or How To Catch Feelings For Reykjavík

Spring has come to Reykjavík, and with it spring breakers: a seasonal phenomenon as invasive as lupine and ineluctable as allergies. When I came here on my own university holiday, I planned to follow the Iceland-lite itinerary that most of us spring breakers stick to: Blue Lagoon, Golden Circle tour, somehow getting drunk enough on overpriced beers to regurgitate them onto your futuristic heated sidewalks. As so often happens on this island, however, nothing turned out as expected.

Filipino Taste in Iceland

Only a handful of dishes are obviously Filipino: lumpia, of course, and pancit canton, which the menu calls “stir-fried chicken noodles.” The rest of the offerings chart a freewheeling course across Europe and Asia, from Russian beef stroganoff to Thai curry. The pancit comes with triangles of white bread, but it’s as good as any you’ll find in a neighborhood fiesta, thrumming with patis and lime. Even the stroganoff carries a garlicky warmth that recalls lola’s kitchen more than babushka's.

Europe

The Philippines

Cebu: An Experience Through The Traveler’s Goggles

The moment you arrive in Cebu you feel intimidated. Actually, the intimidation set in before that — it starts when the view from the plane shifted from shallow cerulean seas to the multi colored roofs of the city, a patchwork of Spanish tile and corrugated tin. There were so many layers to this city, so many variegated shades. How could you possibly sift through and find the gems you knew were hiding within?

Carcar City, Cebu: The Best Lechon in the Philippines

Imagine a covered market packed full of sellers yelling this, their calls layered like a church choir, each straining to be louder the rest. Now imagine the sellers holding strips of crisp, fatty pork skin in their outstretched hands, imploring you to try just one succulent bite. Add in the rich, heady aroma of roasting pigs saturating the humid air and you’ve got an idea of the porcine sensory overload that hits you as soon as you walk into the lechon market in Carcar, Cebu.

9 Destinations on Philippine National Railways

Trains fascinate many travelers. They hold a certain romance — think The Orient Express, or even Harry Potter. Plus, they offer good value for budget travelers. The Philippines’ railway system hardly rivals that Japan or even fellow ASEAN countries like Thailand and Vietnam, where thousands of tourists take days-long sleeper trains every year. However, Manila does have one heavy railway: the Philippine National Railways Northbound-Southbound Line.

Hungary

China

Thailand

Places for Writers: 3 inspiring cafes in Ko Samui

All great writers need a coffee shop. From San Francisco’s Caffe Trieste, where Francis Ford Coppola wrote much of The Godfather, to Edinburgh’s Elephant House, birthplace of Harry Potter, cafes seem to be unusually fruitful places for writers to ply their trade. Even if you’re at a writers’ retreat — ostensibly a space entirely devoted to writing — you’re probably going to need a change of pace and a cup of joe at some point.

4 of my favorite adventures in Chiang Mai

If you want to get around Thailand the Thai way, you’re going to have to rent a scooter. Scooters and motorbikes are by far the most common vehicles on the streets of Thailand — on any average street, dozens trundle past every minute. One of those, dear reader, might have been mine. I’ve been traveling around Thailand on rented scooters for quite a while now, taking on anything that comes my way, and I’d recommend the experience to anyone. Here are four of the greatest adventures I’ve had on my scooter in Thailand, shared in detail so that you can try them, too.

Baidee the Yacht's Dry Dock Vacation

May is a popular time for vacationers to arrive on Koh Samui — the island breeze makes it cooler here than in much of Thailand during the dry season, college students in most of the world are just ending their semesters, and hotel prices are lower than in the peak month of January. Baidee, a 30-meter bugis phinisi, or Indonesian schooner, will be going on vacation this month too. She’ll be taking a trip to the dry dock on the mainland, where she’ll enjoy a full-body spa treatment to get her back into tip-top shape for guests.

The UK

Hong Kong

9 Best Indian Restaurants in Hong Kong

There are few food-minded Hong Kongers who haven’t been to Jashan. The sleek, stylish spot has been serving up Mumbai favorites to adoring crowds since 2003, and it got shout-outs in both the 2009 and 2013 Michelin Guides to the city. The lunch buffet is one of the best in town — the long row of trays features more than 25 savories, not to mention elegant desserts that stray beyond the usual gulab jamun and rice pudding.

Hong Kong's Best Rooftop Bars with Dazzling Views

Eyebar is located on the 30th floor of the iSQUARE skyscraper, a space it shares with the Michelin-starred restaurant Nanhai No. 1. Eyebar’s not quite as accomplished as its neighbor food-wise (FYI, those complimentary-looking spicy peanuts are really $25 a bowl, whether you eat them or not), but they have a great cocktail list and killer views. If you time it right, you can even catch the daily Symphony of Lights from here, all while sipping your ginny Suzie Wrong.

You’re Not a Hong Kong Hipster Until You’ve Tried These 9 Star Street Restaurants

Le Garcon Saigon hearkens back to Vietnam’s French era, when the capital city was called “The Paris of the Orient.” Many Vietnamese classics were born during that era, including banh mi, which here comes stuffed with housemade charcuterie. It’s all a little pricier than your typical Vietnamese joint, but the 5-7 happy hour — here called “L’Heure Saigon” — is a crazy good deal: free-flowing beer plus bar bites for $100.

The Best Korean Restaurants in Hong Kong to Get Your Kimchi Kick

Arirang is the granddaddy of them all: the oldest Korean restaurant in Hong Kong, open since way back in 1964. They recently opened a new space in Tsim Sha Tsui featuring plenty of the “smokeless” barbecue tables that they insist they invented. Barbecue is their specialty, but they also do hearty soups. If you’re feeling under the weather, go for the samgyetang, a ginseng chicken stew that has been known to cure everything from hangovers to the common cold.

8 Hong Kong Breakfasts You Can Eat All Day Long

The owners probably had coffee beans in mind when they named their shop, but they could just as well be referring to the syrupy-soft baked beans that every Englishman demands with his all day breakfast. Here, you can get your English breakfast in either “deluxe full” or “light” size, the latter of which is often recommended for female patrons. (As a female with a deluxe full appetite myself, I beg to differ with that recommendation.)

New Year’s Eve in Hong Kong 2017 guide including events and parties

New Year's Eve is all about superlatives: for the last party of the year, you want the wildest vibes, the strongest drinks, the glammest surrounds. So where better to go than the world's highest bar? Located on the 118th floor of the Ritz-Carlton, Ozone hangs so far above Victoria Harbour that you'll actually see the fireworks from above. This lavish setting is perfect for this year's theme, which evokes the decadence of Marie Antoinette's court.

The US

Tips On How To Become A Top Local Friend In Your City

If you have signed up as a local friend, you can use BookaFriend to earn money and meet interesting people from all around the world. How much money you make depends only on you, the time you invest in it and the quality of the experience you offer. Your profile is the first thing people see, so take the time to make your profile memorable. Add pictures and information that define you and don’t forget to mention all the experiences you can offer as a friend.

3 Days in New York With A Local Friend: Top Things To Do

I’m so glad you’ve decided to join me on this three-day tour of New York City! I should start with a disclaimer: I’ve lived here for my entire life and I still feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface. Clearly, three days is not nearly enough time to see everything in this metropolis, a sprawling five-borough area that’s home to more people than a typical Scandinavian country — but I’ll do my best.

Australia

Christmas Cheers in Australia

Australian Christmas is all about adaptation. Grilled prawns and fruit salads grace our lunch spreads alongside — or in place of — the roasts and bread sauces of colder climes. Among all the ancient traditions that we’ve shed, one remains firmly in place: the Christmas pudding. The intensely rich, suety dessert was obviously designed for a world in which December is the dead of winter — not that that has stopped us from enjoying slice after slice every year.

Dello Mano @5300m – Brownies to Everest

Alice and her husband trekked for over two weeks through the Nepali countryside, a jagged landscape punctuated by bustling Sherpa villages and quiet monasteries, before they reached Everest Base Camp. It was one of the most challenging hikes they had ever completed, and it was only the first leg of a journey that would take nearly two months. Through all glute-pounding climbs, the gasping for breath in the thin air, the throbbing in her feet at the end of the day, Alice never forgot that this was the easy part. Nor did she forget the brownie.