So you’re finally graduating and one more thing to tick off your bucket list is that grad trip you and your best mates have been talking about non-stop over the past semesters. Here’s Part One in our list of city destination ideas and locations to consider venturing to with your BFFs for a week before you start adulting.
Credit: Lonely Planet
Night markets and scenic views await you in the cultural city of Taipei. For the foodie to the outdoor adventurer, there’s truly something special for everyone that’s worth exploring for a good week. Thrill-seekers, you’re in luck. Climb the mountains of Yangmingshan National Park for breathtaking views, hot springs and even see cows in their natural habitat at the peak!
Or take a bus to the famous Jiufen district, where windy and narrow lanes guide you through many teahouses and delectable delicacies – like the drool-worthy Taiwan specialty peanut wrap with ice cream. If food hunts are your thing, you’ll have a blast exploring different markets every other night hunting down a variety of street food and quirky souvenirs.
Reserve a couple of days for winding down to just appreciate art and culture, by paying a visit to the National Palace Museum or the plethora of modern museums like Taipei Fine Arts Museum (TFAM) and Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA). Not leaving out animal lovers, check out the Houtong Cat Village for some play time with Taiwan’s friendly felines!
A beginner’s guide to Japan starts in Tokyo of course, home to world-famous Harajuku and haven to all things oishii. Other than slurping up piping hot bowls of ramen noodles (you must have heard of Ichiran), you can even make your very own cup! At Nissin’s Cup Noodle Museum in Yokohama, fun takes form in customising your very own cup of everyone’s favourite guilty pleasure supper – a perfect group activity for your squad. You even get to bring it back home for consumption in the future, perhaps together at a future chalet or sleepover.
Dog cafes? Been there. Cat cafes? *yawn* Dive into different animal-themed cafes with your friends that one can only expect from Japan’s kookiness – like Akiba Fukurou Owl Cafe and the Penguin Bar in Ikebukuro.
Oh, and the shopping? There’s never a dull moment as your inner shopaholic goes wild discovering the quirky, unique and downright strange creations the city has to offer at every street turn. We could never stop sharing more about Japan – and that’s not even touching on the other islands or cities like Hokkaido and Osaka! Spending just a week here may fly by swiftly and seem like a flurry of activities, but it’ll no doubt be one unforgettable graduation trip for the memory diary.
3. South Korea
Clearly at the top of the list for many K-Pop and K-Drama fans, South Korea is at the forefront of food, fashion and all things fun! But don’t feel left out if you’ve never watched an episode of Goblin or haven’t heard BLACKPINK’s latest single – Korea has much to offer even the most unconvinced, that might leave you a convert.
Besides delicious kimchi and Korean BBQ, get your #ootd shot at the Style Nanda Pink Hotel flagship store and cafe or the iconic blue container at Common Ground, a shopping district littered with locally-designed fashion outlets. If you simply just can’t get enough, trust Korea to have it covered – the malls at Dongdaemun district don’t close till 5am (!!!), ensuring your itinerary to be filled till way past sunset.
Not forgetting your inner culture enthusiast, let the Bukhon Hanok Village sweep you away into the rich history when viewing the traditional Korean houses and shophouses. The country is exploding with activities ’round the clock, which is why we’re obsessed with Korea – and so should you.
Featured image via Pinterest
Looking to explore something different for more chill vibes? Stay tuned for Part 2!