Hipmunk City Love: A Guide to Tokyo Sushi Restaurants

Tokyo Sushi Restaurants

Tokyo is jam-packed with sushi restaurants, from high-class Michelin-starred establishments to off the beaten track fish market diners. It is by no means difficult to find some artistic fish restaurant, but you can definitely not end a Tokyo sightseeing tour without visiting one. Grab your chopsticks and a large amount of money and plan a trip to one of these excellent Tokyo sushi restaurants.

Some Things to Keep in Mind

The best sushi experience, and most likely the most amazing eating experience in your life, takes some planning. The outstanding establishments have only a few available seats. Quality sushi is not mass-produced. The best chefs make your sushi piece by piece. They like to tell you about the ingredients they use. That is why it is important to learn some Japanese. Also, do not expect a cheap eating experience. Prices are often sky-high. Plan ahead, save money, learn some Japanese, and some sushi eating etiquette. Once you are ready, head over to one of the following Tokyo sushi restaurants.

Sukiyabashi Jiro

It is extremely difficult for foreigners to reserve a seat, but Sukiyabashi Jiro in Ginza should definitely be mentioned, as it is one of the most famous sushi restaurants in the world. There are only 10 seats available. Its fame and size require reservations made far ahead, and being able to speak Japanese is almost mandatory. However, you will marvel at the chef’s artistic sushi creations. Keep in mind that his drive for the perfect sushi experience requires you to eat every piece within 45 seconds after it ends up on your plate.

Sushi Saito

It is a real challenge to reserve a spot at Sushi Saito in Akasaka. The reason is its status as one of the best sushi establishments on earth combined with a small capacity of only seven seats. You need to make an early reservation, preferably a few months in advance. Pleasant points about this restaurant are the relaxed atmosphere and the English-speaking chef.

Sushi Dai

When going for sushi in Tokyo, eating at Sushi Dai is one experience you should not miss. It provides you with a chance to eat the freshest sushi in Tokyo. This restaurant occupies a spot at the famous Tsukiji Fish Market. The place is also crowded with sushi restaurants. Sushi Dai is probably your best pick and the hand-picked sushi menu is their best meal. Do some research on nearby Tokyo hotels because to need to wake up early to get the freshest sushi.

Once in a Lifetime Dining Experiences in Tokyo Sushi Restaurants

Sushi is more than just a meal. It is culinary art in its most purest form. Having a chance to eat it in one of the best Tokyo sushi restaurants is a once in a lifetime experience. There is an entire philosophy and etiquette on how to prepare it and eat it. Therefore, if you really want to have an authentic sushi experience, it is strongly advised to head over to some of the best sushi restaurants in Tokyo. Eating sushi will never be the same after a dining experience in one of these restaurants.
 
 
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Hipmunk City Love: A Guide to Kowloon Rooftop Bars

Marvel at the Hong Kong skyline  on top of Kowloon rooftop bars

Kowloon (Cantonese for Nine Dragons) is a district of Hong Kong. This peninsula ranks among the highest densely populated areas in the world. More than two million people live in an area that is smaller than 46 square kilometers. It is a place with countless small alleys and dining opportunities. Travelers who want to escape the crowed streets, find peace, tranquility, and luxury in one of the district’s high-end Kowloon rooftop bars. Overlooking the vibrant skyline of the Kowloon peninsula might become a literal and figurative highlight of the trip. Here are some of the best Kowloon rooftop bars.

3. Ozone

The chic and elegant Ozone sky bar at 1 Austin Road West occupies a perfect spot on floor 118 of the Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong. A visit to Ozone is definitely a flirt with Kowloon’s amazing skyline, but also with gravity. This captivating bar on top of the world’s highest hotel offers a beautiful view over the city. Visitors can grab a pair of binoculars and look at Kowloon’s stunning skyline in detail. The bar serves classy champagne cocktails and visitors can enjoy a glamorous tapas menu that consists of Asian snacks.

2. Aqua Spirit

Aqua Spirit at 1 Peking Road is popular among visitors and locals. The marvelous view is the most attractive reason to visit this amazing rooftop bar and restaurant. Delicious Japanese and Italian dining possibilities are a second irresistible reason to hang out at Aqua Spirit. Aqua Spirit divides the place into two sections. Those who love Western food sit down on one side of the restaurant and patrons who yearn for Japanese cuisine sit down on the other. Luscious fusion cocktails and other fashionable drinks are of course served on both sides.

1. Felix

Felix occupies a marvelous spot in the majestic Peninsula Hong Kong on Salisbury Road. This old-school establishment is one of the original rooftop bars in the city. High-rolling rooftop bar enthusiasts should definitely pay it a visit as it has now gained an iconic status. At Felix’s it is al about elegance and style. This restaurant and bar also requires a certain level of elegance from its visitors. The dress code is strict and children who are younger than 12 years cannot enter the bar. Vacationers who head over to Felix will especially enjoy the scenic Victoria Harbor view.

The Highlight of a Kowloon Rooftop Bars City Trip

Every traveler’s Kowloon sightseeing list should include a visit to a rooftop bar. They should ascend to the top of one of Kowloon’s high buildings and marvel at the beauty that spreads out in front of their eyes. Go up and watch the sun go down and see how the city lights spark up like stars. The true beauty of an urban environment shines brightly in such a sparkling overview. To watch at all this beauty in a comfortable chair while sipping from a savory drink might well be counted as one of the highlights of a Kowloon rooftop bars city trip.
 
 
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Hipmunk City Love: Where to Go for Houston Vegan Restaurants

In search for Houston Vegan Restaurants

Finding good vegan restaurants in a big city often requires some research. To avoid wasting valuable Houston touring time, it is a good idea to create a Houston vegan restaurants list when planning a city trip. Vegan enthusiasts who travel to the delightful city of Houston might like to put the following four vegetarian and vegan restaurants on their “to visit” lists.

San San Tofu

San San Tofu on Wilcrest Drive qualifies itself as a vegetarian restaurant, but it also serves delicious vegan meals. Ask the restaurant staff about the ingredients of the available food to avoid eating products that consist of dairy or eggs. The cooks from San San Tofu know how to serve travelers a proper vegan meal because they took lessons from a Buddhist monk. Some of their dishes, snacks, and drinks include lemon grass tofu, vegan mock meats, jack fruit chips, and soy milk.

Quan Yin

The Vietnamese meals of Quan Yin on Bellaire Boulevard are suitable for vegetarians or vegans. However, they may satisfy meat lovers, as well. This restaurant serves a variety of delicious mock meat dishes like vegan shredded pork balls (appetizer) and vegan green pepper steak (main dish). Refreshing coconut drinks and tasty soy milk are some of the healthy beverages on the menu. Travelers might want to search for Houston hotels near Quan Yin, as it is one of those Houston vegan restaurants that makes them want to return regularly.

Pepper Tree

Pepper Tree on Richmond Avenue serves 100 percent Chinese vegan food. As with restaurant Quan Yin, Pepper Tree also focuses strongly on mock meat dishes. Restaurant guests can start with appetizers like crispy vegan chicken, tofu fries, and steamed dumplings. Some of the main dishes are sweet and sour vegan fish sticks and smoked vegan duck fillet. Possible desserts and beverages include vegan coconut cake, sesame balls, and blueberry smoothies. Pepper Tree offers a broad weekday buffet for an affordable price, too. It is nice to know this restaurants also cleans, cooks, and serves food with triple-filtered water.

Loving Hut

The Loving Hut vegan restaurant chain on S. Kirkwood Road offers a broad mix of Asian and Western orientated dishes. Some of the best appetizers in this restaurant are the vegetable filled golden rolls or the golden nuggets from soy protein. Recommended main dishes include the Loving Hut burger with a vegan patty and teriyaki sauce or the Chow Mein wheat noodle dish with vegetables. Loving Hut also serves various tasteful vegan desserts and beverages.

Create Your Top Houston Vegan Restaurants List

With such a large amount of Houston restaurants and menus, it can be hard to find a trustworthy, quality vegetarian or vegan restaurant in Houston. Visit these eateries to get surprised by the amazing food instead of the lack of vegetarian and vegan dishes. Have a look at this vegan and vegetarian restaurant resource link for more vegan friendly eating and drinking establishments.
 
 
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Hipmunk City Love: Enjoying a Family Vacation in Savannah

Savannah

Families who travel to the state of Georgia should definitely pay a visit to its oldest city. The coastal port of Savannah is an ideal destination for a memorable family trip. There are countless recreational options for kids and their parents. Families can relax on the beach, dine in kid-friendly restaurants, experience adventurous outdoor trips, take part in sport activities, or visit museums and historical buildings. From old to young, every family member will find something of interest in Savannah, Georgia. Here are some of the best sights and attractions that this pleasant city has to offer.

Family Outdoor Adventures

There are plenty of outdoor attractions in and around Savannah. The Oatland Island Wildlife Center on Sandtown Road is the perfect spot to see indigenous plants and animals like bobcats, alligators, and bison. This wildlife center organizes various child-oriented programs. Families can also join the Dolphin Magic Tours. On these tours, you will travel by boat along Savannah’s beautiful riverfront where you can spot famous Savannah sights like Fort Pulaski National Monument and Old Fort Jackson. Families who want to take part in other water-oriented activities can also sign up for an adventurous kayak tour.

Other Activities for Families

The Georgia State Railroad Museum is an attraction that triggers the playful excitement of children and their parents. One of the highlights at this attraction is the possibility to experience a historic ride on one of the diesel or steam engines. Families also get to see railcar collections and demonstrations. Travelers who are more into ships should visit the Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum. This museum showcases maritime antiques and ship models. Exhibitions focus on the important sea trade periods of the 18th and 19th centuries. Vacationers learn more about Savannah and its community at the Savannah History Museum.

Family Friendly Restaurants

From yogurt cups with creative toppings to delicious chicken fingers and personally designed pies, Savannah is a true paradise for food lovers of all ages. That might seem like a cliché, but travelers quickly realize that they are in heaven when they walk into B&D Burgers and see that they can choose from more than 170 different burgers. Other restaurants that make travelers feel like they ended up in a culinary Disneyland are the Whistle Stop Cafe and The Pirates’ House. Both of these themed restaurants are excellent dining spots for children.

Family Friendly Hotels

An ideal vacation in the beautiful city of Savannah also requires the perfect accommodation. As with the various entertaining sights and attractions, there are also countless comfortable and family-friendly Savannah Hotels which will suit the needs of parents and their accompanying children.

Fun for the Family

With a variety of recreational opportunities and equally attractive hotels, your family will have a wonderful time in Savannah. While visiting this lovely city, you will not only get to enjoy its urban sites but also its scenic natural areas. Numerous delicious restaurants and exciting theater shows will complete your feeling of satisfaction.
 
 
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5 Ways To Travel The World At Home

Foreign food - Ways to travel the world at homeWays to travel the world in your own backyard

Do you really have to travel? Maybe you do not have the money, will or time to visit unknown destinations. However, you can still experience the whole world, if you use a little bit of creativity and imagination. What if I tell you that you can experience the world from the comfort of your own chair.

These five convenient ways to travel the world will bring you to far away destinations, introduce you to new cultures and let you experience extraordinary adventures. And the good things is, you do not even have to pack your bags and leave your house.
 
 

1. Travel books

Do you want to discover the world without leaving your chair or bed? A travel book can be the perfect solution. A good writer can take you to all kinds of exotic places. And the best thing is, you will experience them from the comfort of your own home. Who still needs to see the real thing..

2. Food and drinks

One of my favorite ways to experience a foreign culture without traveling. Food is an excellent way to learn about new cultures. Step out of your comfort zone and visit exotic restaurants in your home area. Eat Ethiopian food with your hands, burn your mouth at Indian curries or sip traditional Afghan tea. The choices are endless. You can also buy yourself a nice cookbook and make all kinds of foreign dishes at home.

3. Hosting travelers

Join community sites like BeWelcome or Couchsurfing and open up your house for travelers. Hosting is a great way to meet people from all over the world and learn about their countries. Sometimes I had more then five nationalities in my small little apartment. Which was a truly awesome and educational experience. Soon you will have friends from all over the world, while you never left your hometown.

4. Music and dance

Music is an excellent way to tickle your senses and experience different cultures. Try to broaden your music styles by listening to songs from unfamiliar countries. Enjoy rhythmic African sounds or colorful south american songs. There is a whole musical world out there for you to discover. The only thing you have to do is hit the play button and relax or dance.

5. Movies and documentaries

Relax at home and enjoy movies or documentaries about far away places. They can amaze you with all kinds of incredible things that the world has to offer. You will travel through the deepest oceans, the largest forests and the most extreme deserts. Of course you will experience no discomforts because once again, you will never leave you comfortable house during your trip.

Do you know of any other way to experience the world in your own backyard? As an armchair traveler, what is your favorite way to escape from daily live?

Useful links

  • Travel the world without leaving home: The article that inspired me to write this blog post. Author Alastair Humphreys traveled the world in the very diverse city of London. He munched his way around the city, eating at restaurants with kitchens from all kinds of countries. A very inspiring article.
  • My top 10 travel books: Do you want some tips for good travel stories? You can find a selection some of my favorites in the top 10 travel book section.
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