About Girl Eat World

Hello there! πŸ‘‹ Welcome to Girl Eat World. My name is Melissa and I am the “girl” in Girl Eat World. As the name of this blog might have suggested, I love food, and one of my biggest motivation for traveling the world is to taste even more food!

Penang Food Guide - Ah Leng Char Kway Teow
Happily tucking in to the Char Koay Teow

There is no “About Us” on this blog, because there is no “us”. Everything you see here on this blog is done by yours truly. I’ve written every single post in this blog, taken and edited 99% of the photos (sometimes I use free royalty images, if my photos sucked), and done all the back end maintenance required to keep this blog up and running. It’s a one-woman show!

Bagan Travel Guide
Temple hopping in Bagan, Myanmar

Lastly, you might have gotten to know about me through my Instagram @girleatworld. Well, I hardly ever update Instagram anymore after losing interest in the platform. This blog is where I now record my extensive travel tips and food stories.

At The Great Wall of China

How Girl Eat World Started

Blogging and I go way back. I have been blogging for nearly two decades since 2001 when I was still in school.

I was pretty nerdy as a kid. I learned HTML and CSS in my free time instead of going out. I fell in love with coding and building websites. I was part of the early adopter of Blogger before switching to WordPress in its beta days (back when it was still called b2/cafelog!).

Taipei Guide - Rainbow street at Ximending
At Ximending in Taipei

Back then, I was blogging about video games and all kinds of cringe-worthy topics as any teenager would. I kept a blog til well into early adulthood, but it did not survive after I started working full-time and had less idle time on my hands. I abandoned blogging for a few years.

Fuji Five Lakes Arakuyama Sengen Park
At Chureito Pagoda in Fuji Five Lakes area

Fast forward to 2014, I accidentally found success with my instagram and discovered that I still love telling stories. With this renewed enthusiasm, I decided to give blogging another try. This time, I created a dedicated travel blog and named in Girl Eat World – which is this blog you are viewing right now!

Sacre Coeur
At Sacre Coeur in Paris

Long story short, that’s how Girl Eat World started. Since then, I’ve been super lucky to have explored places I never thought I would visit – such as Ukraine, Jordan, the middle of Australia, and Tasmania – I’ve also done the diving trip of a lifetime in Raja Ampat, spent loads of time in Bali and Japan, crossed New Zealand off my bucket list… and the list goes on!

Lastly, I just have to add that blogging is not my full-time job. It’s my hobby! I work as a designer in a tech company.

Nara Itinerary
With Sika Deer in Nara, Japan

So, you want to know more about me?

At Ubirr Art Site in Kakadu National Park

My Other Interests

Food, Travel, and Visual storytelling are my three main passions. That much is obvious from this blog. Other than that, I’m really just a geeky girl at heart. I enjoy playing games, mostly RPGs and tower-defense games.

My first-ever website, the one that inspired me to self-teach myself how to code and is the entire reason I still have a job, was a character shrine for my favorite game of all time – Final Fantasy VII. I also love watching sci-fi shows (I have been a die-hard fan of The X-Files since I was 13) and doing some front-end coding for work and personal projects.

I also enjoy diving, the kind that takes you underwater, which conveniently overlaps with travel most of the time. It has taken me to obscure places I never thought I would ever visit. I have Advanced PADI certification and have logged over 100 dives so far.


  1. Shobita Neupane says

    You have always given us amazing content. Cannot thank you enough.

  2. Jochia says

    Hi Melissa,

    Thank you for the information on your post. I am interested in visiting tainan. However the tourist bus only comes by during the weekend. Are the public buses in Tainan convenient and accessible; as i have a fear of taking buses as i cant recognize the traditional chinese characters. Would taking uber or taxis be better?

    Thankyou and hold to hear from you soon πŸ™‚

    • Melissa says

      hey jochia, i don’t speak or read chinese characters myself but i had no issues taking the bus in Tainan. you should be fine!

  3. Allan says

    Hi Melissa
    I have been in Japan for work a few times (Tokyo) and taken a long weekend to Osaska/Kyoto.
    This time I will have about a week there and I would like to explore other regions of Japan.
    I love the food and drinks (breweries and distilleries), I have no experience with the nightlife (yet) and I enjoy hiking – I enjoy spending time where locals are rather than where the tourists are.
    Would you suggest north or south?
    Apologies for the very wide and open-ended question

    • Melissa says

      Hey Allan, for 7 days I would head down south to Kyushu. Fukuoka is where hakata ramen comes from and they’re probably the last place in Japan where street food is still a thing so you’ll have fun checking out the food scene there. You can also check out Nagasaki, Kumamoto and Kagoshima (known for pork). Kyushu is less explored so you’ll see less tourist there too, hopefully!

  4. Kris Smith says

    Question I have looked at the Indonesia VOA B1 & at the beginning l see you post a passport photo but in another later section it asks for a pdf β€œ Passport valid for 6 months” does that mean l again download my passport.
    I am so nervous to use this online application as l only have a few hours to apply before boarding a P & O cruise that states l will be refused boarding without it. I can’t apply for it earlier as will be in Indonesia on a 6 day holiday on aVOA that l intend to get at the airport & my understanding is l can only apply for another VOA to reenter once l leave. I will be flying out of Indonesia to Singapore to board the cruise the following day that goes to Indonesia before arriving Australia. Should it fail or be be refused if l make a mistake in the application what can l do? I was told by the Australian Indonesian consulate to get the VOA at Benoa port when ship docks but P&0 want us to have the VOA before boarding!

    • Melissa says

      Hey Kris, yes you do have to upload the passport twice. It’s a new flow they released and I agree it’s a little weird.

  5. Travis says

    Hi Melissa,
    I’m not usually a blog reader but came across your site whilst travelling in Japan this year. Found your info on Kyoto, Osaka and Hakone very useful. You are a gifted writer and know how to pitch things at just the right level. If you ever decided to become a β€œprofessional” travel writer, I’m sure you would be very successful. Thank you for all your help! Travis (from NZ)

    • Melissa says

      Hi Travis, thank you so much for the kind words and for taking the time to write it! you’ve made my day πŸ™‚ I suppose, my posts work bc I try to be honest and only suggest things that I myself found useful.

  6. jila Rogers says

    This was very helpful, is there a good day tours to take us places which hotel 4 or5 star in the good area so you can go shopping and see sightseeing’s

  7. P Sharma says

    Hi Melissa,

    Just a heads-up that I really liked your blog – after reading it, I decided to add a few nights in Phuket Town to my itinerary. So, thank you.

  8. Joanne McInnes says

    Thank you for your review of the Royal Albatross-I will be going on the special Christmas Cruise on December 30th after I arrive fromπŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦. You4 review helped answer all the questions I had & the photos are great too!

  9. Dianne Nichols says

    Melissa, your advice on setting up a Molina account before doing the EVOA application was spot on as was your tip about entering the postal code of the hotel as everything populated automatically thereafter. I discovered that my info from our 016 trip was in the Molina system so that made the account setup and the EVOA app so easy. Once I paid, the EVOA showed up in my email within a minute as well as being visible on my account. Did my husband’s EVOA and same procedured worked like a charm. Thanks for the great advice.

  10. Geoff & Sue says

    Hi Melissa, I came across you by accident, I was actually on the Wise bank card Webb page, and you had left a review on that site saying how good you found the Wise card and the very good low interest charges as against PayPal etc. I eventually ordered my own Wise card in advance because my wife Sue and I are going to Dubrovnik next May. Then I clicked on your photo, this took me to you and your blog page. Very interesting it is too. Keep at it, please add more photos of the places that you visit. I am a young 76 and still eager to tons more with my life.
    For my sins, I ended up working as the Tech Manager at Disney UK. If you are interested in Sci-Fi, I have written a book that came about after I saw a 200ft long cigar shaped UFO.
    I am trying to get my book published, [300 pages], it’s called ‘The Journal of Adrian J. Drake’.
    In brief, Captain Drake on his last mission in Poland at the tail end of world war 11 discovers a saucer shaped craft. He decides to do the unthinkable, he will keep it. But where do you hide a craft as big as West Ham stadium?
    If you are interested, I can send you a copy via my e-mail. If my book can make money, then I could visit your country, lol. Keep up the good work, Melissa, keep eating the world. Regards, Geoff.

    • Hi Geoff, this is random but if you eventually publish your book I would love to get it and read it!

  11. Peggy ellen levitin says

    i am trying to pay for my evisa for indonesia getting there by ship filled out application finally but i am unable to pay anywhere
    i need help thanks

  12. Andrew Parker says

    Hi Melissa,

    I am trying to put in the address for my Hotel in Bali but the VoA wont recognise it and enable Captcha.

    Could you help.

    The Hotel is Radisson Blu Uluwatu and the address is:

    Jl. Pemutih, Village: Pecatu, District: Kuta Selatan,
    Regency:Badung, Province: Bali



      • Mads says

        Hi Melissa

        I have the same problem…
        Our address in Bali according to Google Maps is:
        Kawasan Pariwisata Nusa Dua Lot. North 4, Jl. Nusa Dua, Benoa, South Kuta, Badung Regency, Bali 80363, Indonesia

        According to the postal code webside you’re referring to, the postal code is actually 80362. However, this doesn’t help either.

        What to do?

        Thank you.


        • Melissa says

          Hey Mads, I was able to complete the form with postal code 80363. Can you try that?

  13. GRACE ONG says

    Hi Melissa, thanks for the detailed information on the Visit Japan Web prior to entry into Japan

    We realized that under the section for pre-registration for quarantine procedures, there is a remark that travellers could complete a part of the quarantine procedure on a website before entering Japan.

    Does it mean that we could do the following:

    Create a new VJW account via its website either on computer or mobile phone, input the registration info such as passport number, flight number, arrival date in Japan and other required information and also upload our vaccine certificate for the Quarantine section and await for the square to turn blue.

    Thereafter, we will log out of the VJW website either on computer or mobile phone and log in again to the VJW app in our mobile phone to complete the Immigration Clearance and Custom Clearance.

    • Melissa says

      Hey Grace, yes you can login to the VJW account on another device using the same password and username

  14. Singing girl says

    Hi Melissa
    i am traveling to Japan this weekend which not have take to book JR pass thru Klook as exchange order take 14days to receive.
    so i plan to have a single trip JR pass to Odawara to Kyoto.
    However i do need another JR pass to travel from Kyoto to Nara/Osaka/kobe/Himeji /Hiroshima/Miyajima Island.
    Can you advice which pass should i purchase?

  15. Hardik Tank says

    I am planning to travel singapore with my 3.5 year old baby girl.
    So i was searching on google for some activities for kids and i found your blog.
    Generally i dont read blogs too much but i just read your whole blog and it’s really helps me lot.
    I dont know how to say thanx to you.. But you are really great writer and eater πŸ™‚ as i have seen ur many pics with foods.
    Your all pics are awesome.

    • Melissa says

      Thank you so much Hardik! This means a lot to me. I hope you will have fun with your baby girl!

  16. If you are not a US person, perhaps consider North Korea. The history of the country is fascinating. Thank you

  17. Roo says

    I feel inspired by your blog while researching for my blog! I am also living in Singapore and loves to travel. Started the blog fairly late compared to you and is mainly using it to pen down my experiences and work on my writing. Maybe we can meet up someday? πŸ™‚

  18. Phil says

    Hello Melissa- greetings from England. Like most good things I found you by accident and have really enjoyed what I have read so far. Is England on your travel list- so much history and I am sure that you would really enjoy a Steak and Kidney pudding!

    • Melissa Hie says

      Hi Phil! I have been to the UK twice, but only to London and Bath. I did visit Edinburgh too in one of my trips! This was before i started this blog though, that’s why there are no posts on the UK. Hope to explore more once travel restrictions have been lifted!

  19. Tim Davis says

    Hey there. I just stumbled across your blog when was after some info on Nusa
    Penida recently and its really good hope you get back to travelling soon . btw 39 countries is really impressive. I’ve been to 26 so far.

  20. Carinne Chin says

    I love your blog, Melissa πŸ™‚

    You’re such a great person!!:)

    Whatever school project, your blog is the best!!:)

  21. Alejandra says

    πŸ™‚I love your blog πŸ‘πŸΌπŸ‘πŸΌπŸ‘πŸΌI like how you explain the recipes of korean food … I am Mexican but I love korea and I want to visit each of the places you recommend us thank you very much Melissa … You would visit πŸ‡²πŸ‡½ is beautiful and we have a meal to suck your fingers πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‰πŸ€—πŸ™‚πŸ™ƒ

  22. Beautiful PNG says

    I would recommend for you to visit Papua New Guinea, located just north of Australia. Check out our Instagram Account @beautiful__png

  23. Semoy says

    Greetings from Trinidad & Tobago Melissa. I loved the episode that showcased South Africa so much! Is it possible to get info on the black and white scarf you wore with the leather jacket in some of the final scenes in that episode of Girl Eat World please? Thank you in advance.

    • Melissa Hie says

      Hi Semoy, the person you are looking for is Kamini Pather, who does the TV show Girl Eat World. I am a different person πŸ™‚

  24. intel007simon says

    Do you happen to visit KOREA before?
    I would like to recommend to come to KOREA to learn more.

    (from KOREA/ Seoul)

  25. Alejandro Teus Honig says

    You shoud come to PerΓΊ, nominate the world fodie destination.

  26. Efi Fitriyyah says

    Drop by here just wanna say hi. I admire your instagram, and thinking to knowing your traveling stories here.

    Greeting from Bandung πŸ™‚ Wondering if we can meet up someday 😊

  27. Catarina says

    You’ve got a portuguese-food-lover-fan here. Lovely project, great style and most importantly, FOOD! πŸ™‚

    • Melissa Hie says

      Oh gosh, I hope to visit Portugal some day. Thank you for dropping by Catarina!

  28. Maria (@mashaforrussia) says

    Your photos is so beautiful!!you are so awesome:-)

  29. Manisha Solanki says

    Hi dear, u r my all time favourite developer. I have seen ur https://MelissaHie.com site. which was One page site with 6 different colors. N butterfly pic on home page. which was developed in 2007.
    I’m big follower of ur. good work. keep it up.

    • Melissa says

      Wow that’s old school πŸ™‚ I’ve recently updated my site though, so the butterfly went away. I’m more of a black-white simple design fan now. So much has changed in 8 years!

      • Amrita says

        Hi Melissa,
        Your post is really helpful. We were planning to stay at Ayana Resort and go for new years at Rockbar bali. Would you recommend that? Also can you pls share your insta handle. Had few more questions. Thanks.

        • Melissa says

          You should book ahead if you plan to spend NYE in Bali. I suspect they will have a special event for NYE!

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