24 Hours in Milan

24 hours in Milan Italy, the Fashion Capitol of the World. Unfortunately not by choice, we were unexpectedly booted from our flight shortening our stay in Milan. Normally something like this would be pretty upsetting to me, but it was all part of the journey. Besides the only goal I had was to explore and get lost with my camera, nothing makes me feel more alive than that!

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The obligatory selfie in the hotel lobby. (Hotel NH Collection Milano President)


Hey Siri! One of the best things I did in preparation for this trip was to rent an international MiFi hotspot. If you plan on traveling abroad I highly recommend using one on your trip, unless you don’t care about using public WiFi with the chance of getting your data compromised. I went with a company called XCom Global which only charged me $15 a day for unlimited usage.


An interesting restaurant sign to come across when you’re actually an American.

Another good reason for getting the international MiFi is so you can use Yelp when you’re starving! Here are a few dishes from Mozzarella e Basilico, first meal in Milan and it was damn good!
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Sausage pork with potato puree

Saphron risotto with prosciutto

The “Double Malt”

The signature risotto dish

Calzone wrapped with prosciutto

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Milan definitely has their share of interesting street performers. Although I did find some of the street vendors to be a bit annoying in the tourist areas. These were the types of people who would walk right up to you and nag you to buy a “selfie stick” from them.

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Duomo di Milano

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For dinner we heard good things about Da Vic – Ristorante Guerrini so we decided to call and make reservations. Good thing we did! We saw a few visitors like us get turned away because they were all booked, they even mentioned it was their last night in Italy. Da Vic turned out to be a great choice, the Chef/owner came out to greet us and talk to us for a bit which was really nice. I can’t say enough about how great the food and service was. It’s always a special feeling when you feel welcomed when you’re so far away from home.

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Loved this dish so much I had to order it again.

i-DdkZZVZ-XLThis octopus was amazing and super tender! I don’t take octopus for granted at all! Whenever I’m in Hawaii I’ll spend my time spear fishing and free diving for these guys.

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Goodbye Milan it was a great experience, until next time!

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andrew@andrewwongphoto.com

Copenhagen


Welcome to Copenhagen, my first trip out to Europe and it was one a good one! Freezing, wet and adventurous are a few words to describe my experience in Copenhagen. Not to mention, Bikes! Everywhere! I really loved seeing people use bikes as their chosen form of transportation. Not only that, it was nice seeing people not having to lock up their bikes since the crime rate is extremely low. (never going to see that in San Francisco!)








Being into the craft of Beers, the Carlsberg Brewery was definitely on the list of places to check out. Lucky for me it was “Culture Night” in Denmark so all museums were open late with free admission.










Tivoli Gardens was another stop on the list, a theme park right in downtown. Pretty cool spot actually, a nice easy way to blow off a stressful day maybe? They do say that Denmark is the most happiest country in the world.








Here are some random photos photojoaqing around town, which of course is always a lot of fun.































On our last night in Copenhagen we decided to have dinner at Resturant AOC, a two star Michelin restaurant. Pricey as hell!!! might as well enjoy this once in a life time opportunity! Here are a few photos from our meal, I really enjoyed how creative and friendly they were.












San Diego

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San Diego! The land of the Sun, beaches, Sea World,  carne asada fries and some of the best Micro Breweries in the country. The minute I touched down in San Diego I only had one goal, to visit as many Micro Breweries as possible. All in all it was a great trip and I was able to check out a total of seven breweries. (Ballast Point, Iron Fist, Green Flash, Belching Beaver, The Lost Abbey / Port Brewing, and Mike Hess Brewing)
Hands down Ballast Point was my favorite and the first brewery I went to, literally right after landing. My two favorite craft beers from Ballast Point had to be the Dorado Double IPA and the Grapefruit Sculpin IPA, smooooooth and tasty! The Ballast Point Miramar location even had an “R&D” section on their menu of brews that might not be out on the market yet, which of course is totally awesome! Out of all the breweries I visited this time around Ballast Point by far was the most busiest, and the only one with a restaurant in it.

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Iron Fist Brewery was another fantastic brewery I got to check out, not to mention they had the best looking growlers I’ve ever seen!  Sadly I was so amazed I forgot to even snap a shot of their growlers! The staff was really friendly and welcoming, even more so when they found out I was visiting from San Francisco. (I even got a free sticker)  I’m an IPA fan so they recommended their “Counter Strike” IPA for me since the weather was hot and humid. I have to admit the “Counter Strike” IPA really did go well with how hot it was that day.

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Green Flash was one of the larger breweries on my trip, and had the most variety of IPA’s available. I had to go with the taster sizes here just so I could get a sample all of their IPA’s. I can’t remember which ones I tried but I do know they were all pretty good. Also their cross street is “Top Gun Street” how dope is that!

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Belching Beaver the funniest of all the breweries I visited, everything from their logo to the names of their beer (ie: “Me So Honey” Wheat Ale) . The “Me So Honey” Wheat Ale was pretty refreshing, a good summer beer no doubt. I also tried their “Great Lei” IPA which tasted like a Pina Colada, definitely an interesting beer with the taste and aroma of coconut.

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The Lost Abbey, home of the “Agave Maria.” I came here to check out one of their brews called “Agave Maria,” a description quoted from their website: “a blend of Anejo and Reposado barrels and aged for a minimum of ten months, Agave Maria has hints of black pepper, sweet sugar, oatmeal, and oak with an earthy, bitter smoked chocolate on the finish. The base beer, a new Agave strong ale, was created specifically to pair with the spiciness of the Tequila, adding a sweet honey-like quality to the beer.” Basically beer aged in tequila barrels which equals 13.5%ABV! I took a small sip of this and had one of those “spidey sense” moments Spider-Man gets right before something goes wrong. Yup one small sip was all I needed with this one.

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Mike Hess Brewing, the last brewery on my trip and the smallest of the bunch. Mike Hess might have been the smallest but I could tell it was filled with a good amount loyal regulars. They also give you a nice pint glass if you do a flight of 5 tasters @ $14. There was also a couple of dogs hanging out, if only I had my equipment with me to take some portraits of them. Maybe that should be my next project, “Brew Dogs” portraits of the dogs that hang out in breweries. I’ll have to say this trip was epic, I will have to visit more of San Diego’s Micro Breweries next time and yes Oregon is on the list as well!

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12 Hours in Old San Juan

Fortunately and unfortunately I only had 12 hours to spend in Puerto Rico while on my way back from the Caribbean. The plan was to focus all of our time in the Old San Juan area. A couple must do’s were to visit the old fort Castillo San Cristóbal, and eat some authentic “mofongo” from El Jibarito (both were excellent choices). I’ll definitely be returning to experience the rest of the island.


























Barbados

Adventure time on the island of Barbados! I must say that Barbados has some of the bluest waters I have ever seen in my life. Also here’s a tip if you ever plan to visit, it’s forbidden to wear any type of camouflage clothing on the island.





























Dominica

Good times on the island of Dominica! GoPro Hero 4 and Fuji x100T in hand I set off to capture my experience on this beautiful island.

“The Golden Land”

Myanmar, all I can say is wow! A country filled with so much culture, smiling faces, and golden Pagodas everywhere (yes everywhere!). As someone who loves to document everyday life with a camera, I felt so alive creatively. I often found myself people watching and composing scenes in my head before pressing the shutter button of my camera. Below are photos I took around Yangon to Inle Lake (located in the Shan State). I left this country energized with a feeling to travel more to experience everyday life in new places. There is still so much more I want to explore here and I’m looking forward to the day I return.

Japan

1996 was the last time I visited Japan and back then I didn’t care about photography, traveling, or even Japanese food. At that time I went along with my parents to visit family members we had living in Tokyo. Fast forward to 2013… This time around things were definitely going to be different. I made sure to appreciate every little thing and adsorb as much of the culture as I could. Sensory overload would be a good way to describe my experience, I even slept through a 7.1 earthquake.

I’d like to thank my cousins Lester & Jaydee for taking the time to be my guides, you can check out Lester’s portfolio here:

http://www.maliaslookingglassphoto.com/

https://www.facebook.com/MaliasLookingGlass

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The Philippines

It’s been 6 years since my last visit to the Philippines, and so much has changed since then. This time around my journey took me to the beautiful island of Palawan all the way to the Ilocos Norte region, the northern tip of Luzon. I was excited to experience the rich culture and life of the Philippines, here are photos documenting my travels.