It was my second time to visit Taipei, and after a 7 hour flight we touched down in the evening, ready for some food!
Taipei being the birthplace of one of my favourite Asian dumpling restaurants, Din Tai Fung, we of course couldn’t pass up the opportunity to sample the original. There was a bit of a wait (around 30 minutes – although we passed by the next day and the wait was over 90 minutes!) but it was so worth it for all of the delicious food!
The next morning I was up bright and early to meet one of the girls from the flight to hike up Elephant Mountain.
Elephant Mountain is also known as Xiangshan in Chinese, and the name comes from the mountain’s elephant-like shape. Thanks to Taipei’s public transport system, it’s very easy to get there, and is just a ten minute walk through a park to the start of the hike.
First of all I’d like to apologise for how quiet it’s been over here on The Dubai Diaries for the past few weeks – I’ve just finished sitting my yearly exams so I was out of action studying for a while!
After my 2 trips to Hanoi it was time to explore another part of Vietnam – Ho Chi Minh City, also known by the locals as Saigon.
We arrived after a fairly quiet night flight and although this time the layover was only 24 hours, I was still eager to fit in as much as possible. There’s a huge street food market around a 10 minute drive away, so a few of us jumped in a taxi to sample some local food for dinner, which was delicious. I’m converted to Vietnamese food after a month of flights there!
The next morning we were up bright and early to head to the Mekong Delta.
It was around a 2 hour drive, and we had a quick stop at a rest stop along the way – similar to the stop we’d had in Hanoi on the way to Trang An, very touristy! At least this one had some pretty gardens 😉
I can’t believe we’re already on to the last roster of 2017! Where has this year gone?!
Although I actually only got one flight that I bid for in December, I’m not too disappointed with my roster. I managed to get on the swap page and get a London instead of Perth to do my Christmas shopping which is perfect!
I’m finishing up November with my trip to Taipei, and then I’ll be heading to:
PER – Perth, Australia – swapped for: LGW – London Gatwick, UK
- SEP – Safety and Emergency Procedures, our yearly exams!
- JFK – New York, USA
- AMM – Amman, Jordan (turnaround)
- HKG – Hong Kong
- AMS – Amsterdam, Netherlands
Fortunately I’ll be back to working in first class next month, I have to say I’ve really missed it – business class just isn’t the same! 😀
As I mentioned above I’ve swapped the Perth for a London, so I’ll try and get some Christmas shopping done there, as well as a trip to the supermarket for all of my essentials.
After that I’ve got my yearly exams, which are always great fun…not! 😉
Then it’s off to New York, which is the only flight I got that I bid for, so I’m looking forward to seeing all of the Christmas lights and perhaps even going ice skating in Central Park.
Next up is a quick turnaround to Amman and back, before a flight to Hong Kong, which I didn’t actually bid for but do love. I’ll be getting my fix of dumplings from Din Tai Fung!
I’m lucky enough to have leave for Christmas the second year in a row, and we’ll be heading to Mauritius for some sunshine this year – let’s hope the flights aren’t too full!
My last flight of the year is to Amsterdam – I haven’t been there for quite a while so if anybody has any good wintery suggestions I’ll be more than happy to hear them.
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For my first trip to Hanoi I was eager to see as much of the city, and surrounding countryside, as possible. After a lovely quiet flight, we arrived at the hotel just after lunchtime, and agreed to meet in a couple of hours to tick off our first item on the itinerary – a street food tour!
There are plenty of companies that come up if you google “Hanoi street food tour”, and one of the girls on the flight had already contacted one to arrange our tour. We took an uber into the city (our crew hotel is around a 40 minute drive away) to meet with our local guide, Hannah.
We started at Hoan Kiem Lake, which is a central point of the Old Quarter of Hanoi. Since it was a weekend, all of the surrounding roads were blocked off for cars and were pedestrian-only, which was great.
Our first stop on the tour was a little bit of a walk from the lake, but this was the perfect chance to get a feel for the city. It was very busy and it felt like everyone was out enjoying the evening!
It was my first time to visit Accra, and I was excited to be heading to a new destination. After a nice and quiet flight we landed into Accra around lunchtime, and were greeted with fresh coconuts in the hotel. What a welcome!
After heading up to the room and freshening up, I popped on down to the pool to soak up some sunshine. I met up with a couple of the other crew and we sat by the pool having some cocktails and chatting. Since it was a Saturday, there was a DJ and everyone was in a party mood!