Ristorante Rosati Restaurant Review

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Can you really find a taste of Italy in Berlin, Germany?

Restaurant Name: Ristorante Rosati
Address: Bismarckstrasse 88, 10627 Berlin, Germany
SpecialtyItalian food, Region of Ischia

Note:  This is an independent restaurant review based on my experience.

According to their website, the owner of Ristorante Rosati hails from beautiful Ischia, Italy and the menu is a reflection of the typical savoury, regional offerings. Most notably, delectable truffle dishes, rabbit, Coniglio ischitana and seafood.

This Italian eatery is conveniently located Continue reading “Ristorante Rosati Restaurant Review”

Vietnam – Know Before You Go

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Helpful tips for your first trip to Vietnam – Visa, Currency, Transportation & more.

Visa:  If you are not on a schedule, 2 weeks is NOT long enough in Vietnam – it does not cost a whole lot more, so why not apply for the one month visa.  Since February 2017, you can get a 1 month, 3 month or 6 month e-visa online which simplifies the process. Visa extension is extremely difficult, so do not cheap out!

Please note, many countries can not apply online, rather they must apply in advance.  Check this easy information map by Gorden Cheng to see which visa policy applies to your country.

Getting In / Arrival – Airlines will not let you board your flight to Vietnam if you do not have a ticket back out again. Were you hoping to wing it? Again, make sure you have a ticket out of Vietnam, even if you book a cheap bus ticket out or flight where the date can be changed or cancelled if you need to change dates/stay longer.

Before getting in the customs immigration lineup, make sure you have completed your landing visa at the counter to the left. Then proceed to immigration line.

Pre- visa internet application is not always necessary, but probably safer.  We spoke with many people who come and go often and never do it. They simply arrive, get application papers which we saw on the counter, and fill out at the airport arrival area. Make sure, if you choose to take the risk, to have passport photos with you to speed the process.  We saw a lot of people waiting to get photos taken and processed.

Tip: book flights at least 4 days out for best prices!💡

Airport bathrooms are extremely dirty and do not have toilet paper.  Always carry a packet of kleenex tissues for this purpose!

SIM Card:  Swap out your SIM card for a Vietnamese SIM for easy phone access, ordering Uber, google maps, etc.  Make sure your phone is unlocked or it will not work.  I use a cheap, unlocked, second phone to do the job.  That way you can have a travel phone with all the apps you may want to have / need, ie. Skyscanner, Maps, Uber, etc.

SIM cards can be bought at the airport or at any official store.  You simply point to your phone, they show you some options, you choose and pay, they install.  Easy!  Note: You will need to show your passport for registration.  The speed is fast and the card is quite affordable.  There are basically 3 carriers:  Mobifone, Viettel, Vinamobile and Vinaphone. We used Mobifone, simply because it was the first one we saw at the airport; it worked seamlessly.  Tip: Make sure the card functions before walking away!

SE Asia air travel in general is extremely stressful; people are very pushy and do not understand the concept of a line or waiting their turn.  This is a cultural difference, so be aware and have patience!

Currency:  The currency used in Vietnam is Vietnamese Dong. That being said, they will often accept USD$, but be prepared to pay a considerable amount more due to a poor exchange rate.

Bank ATM machines in airport did not work when we arrived in Ho Chi Minh city – none of them 😳.  So many travellers were frantically running from machine to machine trying to get money.  Tip:  Have some backup cash, just in case.  Not a large amount, but enough to get to the next bank machine. 

Language:  Vietnamese  – It seems most locals speak NO English, not even in tourist places – everything works with pointing, calculators and smiles.  Remember, you are in their country – either learn how to speak Vietnamese or have patience.  Be happy when you find the few who do speak some English and remember a little praise goes a long way, as does a smile.

Transportation: We found the Uber system to function fantastic!  Alternatives include taxi, bus, airplane, train and of course, buy or renting a motorbike.  We met a few people who bought a motorbike at the beginning of their trip and sold it to the next tourist at the end!


Emergency Dial:
– 115 – Ambulance/First Aid
– 113 – Police
– 112 – Search & Rescue
– 114 – Fire

Embassies and ConsulatesEmbassyPages.com – Complete listing of worldwide representations with clickable links to address, contact numbers and names, email and website.

Tip: Take smart phone pictures of your health insurance, passport, visa, credit cards, drivers licence, health card and Embassy contact info.  Save to an emergency folder (and cloud) so you have quick access to everything. 


General:
– be friendly and patient and you will discover wonderful people
– Food is mostly Pho (delicious soups), noodles, rice and seafood/fish
– Prices are very good
– Beautiful scenery and landscapes
– Cities are advanced and offer every need and travel level (backpacker to luxury)
– Lots of history, therefore many museums – however, be prepared for their side of the story
– Visa problems (addressed above) – prepare for a longer stay if you have the possibility, otherwise you must leave
– Carry serviettes / wet wipes / tissues with you – so many restaurants do not have them, or make you pay for them!  Also handy for washroom break.
– Credit cards are NOT widely accepted
– Keep someone you trust back home updated as to your whereabouts.  A quick Whatsapp or messenger update is a great way to accomplish this without driving everyone nuts.

I have said it before, but it bares repeating.  In general, southeast Asia airport bathrooms are extremely dirty and it is common there is no toilet paper. Air travel in this region is extremely stressful; people are crazy and pushy - they butt in lines, push, walk through you, pick noses, belch, and more. Ok, got that off my chest!  The main thing to remember is this is an adventure.  Cultural differences is what keep the travel bug alive.  If we were all the same, there would be no need to travel!  

Links:
 Ho Chi Minh, Saigon / Photos
 Phu Quoc Island / Photos
…..⇒ Extreme Budget Tips – $10/day Phu Quoc 
.….⇒ Stay: Gia Thanh Guest House
           …..⇒ Eat: AceroLa Bar and Restaurant
           …..⇒ Eat: Bia Ruou Restaurant & Micro brewery
           …..⇒ Eat: Bun Cha Ha Noi / Bún Chả Hà Nội
           …..⇒ Eat / Bar: Langchia Hostel & Bar
           …..⇒ Eat: Quan An Mien Trung (at the night Market)
           …..⇒ Eat: Quan Oc Binh Dan Restaurant
           …..⇒ Eat: Quan Ra KoiQuán Ra Khơi
           …..⇒ Eat / Bar: Rory’s Beach Bar
           …..⇒ Eat: Thu Phuong Restaurant
Southeast Asia Travel Guide

Budget Tips – Phu Quoc, Vietnam

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$10 / day Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam on an extreme budget? Yes! Can you afford to stay home?

The island of Phu Quoc is a favourite vacation destination for wealthy mainland Vietnamese.  A little over half of the island is a national park boasting lush, jungle like terrain.  A huge area of the island is currently under construction, creating a tourist city.

As the prices continue to rise with the tourist influx, there are still ways to realize a budget friendly Phu Quoc.  Here are a few of my personal tips:

– Stay at Langchia Hostel for just $7 per night; includes breakfast, wifi, bedding & swimming pool
– Buy fruits and veggies at the market
– Buy Noodles in the store & make your own noodles with a kettle and big bowl (borrowed or bought) – throw on market herbs and spices for great flavor
– Buy all beverages at the market, there is a side street selling a huge variety at really good prices
– Take towel and your own food / beverages to beach 😀

I figure you could stay on the island, including lodging and food for as low as USD $10 per day?!! 🤓  Now that is a vacation on an extreme budget! Can you afford to stay home?


Hostel Prices / Booking: Hostel World – great site bringing together all of the hostels, what they offer and prices.


Let us know your average daily expenses in the comments section below.


Links of Possible Interest:
→ Phu Quoc Island / Photos
.….⇒ Stay: Gia Thanh Guest House
…..⇒ Eat: AceroLa Bar and Restaurant
…..⇒ Eat: Bia Ruou Restaurant & Micro brewery
…..⇒ Eat: Bun Cha Ha Noi / Bún Chả Hà Nội
…..⇒ Eat / Bar: Langchia Hostel & Bar
…..⇒ Eat: Quan An Mien Trung (at the night Market)
…..⇒ Eat: Quan Oc Binh Dan Restaurant
…..⇒ Eat: Quan Ra Koi / Quán Ra Khơi
…..⇒ Eat / Bar: Rory’s Beach Bar
…..⇒ Eat: Thu Phuong Restaurant


Budget Tips Location:  Asia  >  Southeast Asia  >  Vietnam >  Phu Quoc Island

Yum Saap – Don Muang Airport Bangkok

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Overpriced, flavourless, exorbitant prices airport fodder?  Yum Saap, putting the yum back in Food!

Restaurant Name: Yum Saap
Address:  Don Muang Airport, Public Zone, FL 4, Bangkok, Thailand

Note:  This is an independent restaurant review based on my experience.

Yum Saap, putting the YUM back in Airport food!  Continue reading “Yum Saap – Don Muang Airport Bangkok”

Quan Oc Binh Dan 30 K Restaurant Review

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Barbecued seafood, tangy spicy sauces, average dish price of 30k dong. This Vietnamese Phu Quoc restaurant is getting attention!

Restaurant Name: Quan Oc Binh Dan 30K
Address:  So 123 Duong Tran Hung Dao, Duong Dong, Phu Quoc

Note:  This is an independent restaurant review based on my experience.

Quan Oc Binh Dan 30K gets it’s name because most dishes cost around 30.000 dong!  Also know as Ốc 30K, that is a mere €1.10 or USD$1.30 for barbecued goodness!


For more info about Phu Quoc and the top things to do click the link.
Find out where we stayed ⇒ Guest House.


Four days into our stay on Phu Quoc island, we discovered the restaurant Quan Oc Bin Dan 30K while searching for traditional Vietnamese food with a good price. And this is where we ate every night after!

The entire staff, Continue reading “Quan Oc Binh Dan 30 K Restaurant Review”