• Family Travel

    36 hours in Hualien, Taiwan

    When tourists visit Hualien on Taiwan’s east coast, they typically only visit Taroko National Park, which is the region’s signature attraction. However, Hualien has a lot more to offer. With mountains, lakes, and wetlands, Hualien has a diverse ecosystem to cater to a diverse range of activities. We spent a day and a half exploring what Hualien had to offer. We started our third day in Taiwan with breakfast at the Promiseland Resort’s Lira Restaurant, where we had dinner the previous night. It was suppose to be Western style, but it was mostly a mashup of Taiwanese and American food. Nate woke up sick; I think the combination of no…

  • Hotel Review

    Hotel Review: Promiseland Resort

    One of the highlights of the multigenerational family road trip was our stay at the Promiseland Resort Hualien. I wasn’t quite sure what to make of the Promiseland Resort. It was definitely a nice place to stay. In fact, it’s a favorite of many Taiwanese presidents and the Foxcon (the iPhone manufacturer) CEO. Inspired by the famed architect Gaudi, the resort had a Spanish/Italian/Mediterranean feel to it. Traveling all the way from the US, I would never selected to stay at this resort, but it makes sense  why our group stayed here. The vast majority of our group lives in Taiwan, and a trip to Europe requires a 20+ hour…

  • Family Travel

    Taroko National Park – Taiwan’s Crown Jewel

    To our relief, after two days of little sleep Baby T seemed like his normal self on his second day in Taiwan. We started our second day in Taiwan with breakfast at the hotel before we boarded the tour bus. We headed south towards Hualien County, home to Taroko National Park. Su Hua Highway From the hotel, we traveled down the treacherous Su Hua Highway, one of the most dangerous roads in the world. Our bus driver was a beast. He maneuvered the bus through steep, narrow, winding roads the were carved up against scenic cliffs. In fact, most tourists taking bus tours traveling along Taiwan’s east coast opt to…

  • Family Travel

    A Stopover in Yilan County, Taiwan

    Getting started in Yilan County We began our tour of Taiwan in Yilan County. Located next to Taipei, Yilan is a popular day trip destination for residents and visitors of Taiwan’s capital. Our flight arrived in Taipei at 6 AM and my mom met us at the Taoyoun airport. We took a taxi to the Lucky News Hotel, where the rest of the family had been staying. We got a quick shower and breakfast, attempted to squeeze a nap for Baby T (we were unsuccessful) and met up with my mom’s cousins as we waited for our charter bus. Growing up, a lot of family vacations consisted of taking a…

  • Family Travel Tips

    (Barely) Surviving a Long-haul Flight with a Baby

    Sometimes, trips don’t go according to plan. On our way to Taiwan, we barely survived our first long-haul flight with a baby. I booked our flights using airline miles. After more than 24 hours on a plane or at the airport, we learned a few tips that made our flight home much smoother.   Mishaps Before Boarding the Plane Like our trip to Miami earlier this year, the getting to the airport did not go smoothly. Baby T refused to nap that morning, and when he finally fell asleep, we had to wake him up to go to the airport. We were stressed trying to pack and getting him to…

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  • Credit Card Churning

    How To Redeem Airline Miles to Fly on EVA Air to Taiwan

    There are several other sites that are better equipped to share the ins and outs of travel hacking, and how to use points to get to various destinations around the world.  Using sites such as The Points Guy, One Mile at Time, and Million Mile Secrets, I was able to able to piece together our business class flights to Taiwan on EVA Air using points. Here is how to redeem airline miles to Taiwan. As soon as we decided to make the trip to Taiwan, I began searching the easiest route to get there. Living in Atlanta, the most logical starting point was Delta. After a quick search, a realized…

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  • Family Travel

    A Two Week Trip to Taiwan – An Introduction

    Growing up I dreaded and looked forward to family trips to Taiwan. I looked forward to them, because going to a different country during Christmas or spring break made you the cool kid at school, even if the purpose of the trip was to visit my grandparents and extended family. I dreaded them because we always spent so much time seeing sitting in the living rooms of relatives I didn’t remember…typically the senior crowd because anyone else younger is either working or in school and the Taiwanese spent long hours at work or school. As much as I stood out among my classmates in rural Ohio, being in Taiwan reminded…

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  • Atlanta

    Orchid Daze at the Atlanta Botanical Garden

    February isn’t exactly an ideal time to visit a botanical garden. But, with a unusually warm winter we decided to pay a visit with Baby T. Located on the north end of Piedmont Park on the edge of Midtown, the Atlanta Botanical Garden is an oasis in the middle of the city.     There weren’t too many flowers in bloom outside, but our visit coincided with Orchid Daze , an annual exhibit in February and March housed in the Fuqua Orchid Center which is the home of the largest collection of different orchid species on display. Even with winter temperatures, the Orchid Daze is worth the trip to the…

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