October 19, 2016

September to Remember: Manila to Iloilo City

September to Remember: Manila to Iloilo City

(c) Andrew

After my third bottle of beer I took my backpack, which is almost half of my size, and left our mini celebration to meet Andrew. We left Bataan at 3 in the morning and I dozed off the moment we got inside the bus and took our seats.

If you want to sleep easily during a long bus ride, drink beer or any alcoholic beverage.

It was still dark when Andrew woke me up telling me we were already in Cubao. Our bus almost flew us– it took us only two hours from Limay, Bataan to Cubao! We got off and took a bus to Pasay even though I was still groggy. The traffic was smooth and before we knew it we were already in Pasay Rotunda bus terminal. Luckily, there’s an available airport loop bus, which will take you to NAIA Terminal 3 at Php20 only.

We arrived at NAIA Terminal 3 before 7 AM and since we got there earlier than we expected, we decided to eat breakfast at McDonald’s and drink coffee. We took a lot of selfies to kill time.

Early stage of relationship. I know. That can’t-get-enough-of-each-other kind of thing but not R-18 or whatever.

After waiting for an hour we finally boarded and guess what? Kim Chiu is on the same flight with us. She’s wearing very large sun glasses and high heels.  I didn’t like the sound of her voice but she looked ok.

Even though there was a Zika virus case in Iloilo, most of the seats in our flight were occupied. Walang makakapigil sa amin. But to be safe we brought two medium-sized bottles of off lotion. Segurista lang.  

Our trip took an hour and we arrived at Iloilo International Airport 15 minutes earlier than our ETA. To my surprise, the airport was impressive. It is clean, huge, and modern. It’s nice to know that we have a nice airport besides NAIA Terminal 3.

We made a quick stop at the Tourism Desk inside the airport to get Iloilo map guides then proceeded to the parking lot to look for the airport shuttle van. We only paid Php50 each for the van which brought us to SM Iloilo.

Finally, we can eat lunch and buy foods and supplies for our trip to Concepcion, Iloilo. More about this on my next blog. I’m sleepy.

There were supposed to be five of us on this trip but three of them couldn’t make it. One was broke, the other one was having issues with her leave and the last one got sick before our flight. My boyfriend and I were the only ones left to fulfill the itinerary I had made even if there was a Zika virus case in Jaro, Iloilo. Syempre, walang makakapigil sa akin- sa amin pala. 


Iloilo and Guimaras Travel Guide

Iloilo and Guimaras Travel Guide

Concepcion, Iloilo

Iloilo is one of the provinces occupying the Panay island in Visayas. It is known for its old Spanish churches where one is declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, island destinations and of course the origin of La Paz Batchoy.

How To Get There

Iloilo can be reached by plane from Manila and travel time takes 1 hour. There are also flights from Cebu, Davao, Hong Kong and Singapore via Cebu Pacific. For the flight schedules, visit cebupac’s website.

Note: Iloilo guide maps are available at the Tourism desk inside the Airport.

Where To Stay

We stayed at a budget hotel, Urban Inn, located near the La Paz Public Market. We chose this hotel due to its accessibility to public transportation. It’s also decent and very affordable; we got our room for 560/night/person with free breakfast. The room was clean, so are the sheets.

What To Do

Island hopping in Concepcion

Bulubudiangan Island

Agho Island

Lumpatan Island 

Guimaras Day Tour

Alubihod Beach

Iloilo City Walk and Jeepney Tour

Molo church

Iloilo Eats

Netong's La Paz Batchoy

How To Get Around

As compared to other provinces in the country, getting around Iloilo by public transportation is easy and convenient.  We roamed around the city via jeepneys and used the bus to get to Concepcion.

Tranpo Tips:

Airport shuttle

There are airport shuttles (vans) bound for SM Iloilo located in the parking lot of the airport. Fare is Php 50 and travel time is 30 minutes.

Jeep to Ceres Terminal (Tagbak)

Walk across the street from SM Iloilo and look for Leganes bound jeepneys. Tell the driver to drop you off at Ceres Terminal in Tagbak. Fare is Php 10 and travel time is around 10-15 minutes.  

Jaro-CPU Jeepneys

Jeeps with this signboard pass along Jaro Plaza (which is a walking distance to Jaro Cathedral and Belfry), Gaisano Mall, Museo Iloilo and Calle Real.


July 30, 2016

Cebu-Bohol Travel Guide

Cebu-Bohol Travel Guide

Cebu and Bohol are two of the most visited provinces in the country by local and foreign tourists. I love Cebu for its beaches, waterfalls, Butanding and lechon. God, I love their lechon! As for Bohol, I love its marine life.

How To Get There

Lapu-Lapu International Airport is the gateway to Cebu.  Cebu Pacific and PAL fly daily to Cebu from Manila.  On the other hand, Bohol can be reached via boat from Cebu with two hours travel time.

Visit this link for ferry schedule from Cebu to Bohol. 

Where to Stay

There are a number of hotels/hostels in Cebu. No need for fancy hotels, you will be sleeping the moment you arrive at your hotel because there are many activities to do in the area.

*We stayed at Capitol Central Hotel and Suites in Cebu and Matig-A Seaside Pensione in Bohol. Matig-A is just a walking distance from downtown of Tagbilaran City.

What To Do

South Cebu

We only managed to visit Cebu City and South Cebu.

- Swim with whale sharks in Oslob.

- Trek the highest peak in Cebu - Osmena Peak.

Visit the Heritage Park in Oslob.


Bohol has a very established tourism industry. We purchased a tour package for the countryside tour and ocean adventure from Angelbert Tours.

- Bohol Chocolate Hills (not chocolatey anymore)

- Balicasag marine life. 


Day 1:
- Arrive at Mactan International Airport
- Eat lunch at Manna STK Foodhouse
- Visit Mactan Shrine ( there’s nothing exceptional to see here)
- Ride taxi to Cebu City
- Hotel check in
- Dinner

Expenses (2pax):
Taxi to Mactan Shrine: Php135 (walking distance to Manna Foodhouse)
Lunch at Manna STK: Php620
Taxi to Cebu City: Php330

Day 2:

- Depart for Oslob at 5 am via Ceres Bus (South Bus Terminal)
- Drop off at Brgy. Tan-awan
- Whale Shark Watching
- Breakfast
- Ride habal-habal to Aguinid Falls. Trek and swim.
- Lunch
- Ride habal-habal to Tumalog Falls. Swim.
- Ride habal-habal to Heritage Area.
- Ride bus back to City.
- Dinner at Zubochon (because lechon).

Expenses (2pax):
Taxi to South bus terminal: Php90
Bus to Oslob: Php310
Whale Shark Watching: Php1200
Tourguide with transpo in Aguinid/Tumalog/Heritage: Php900
Tip at Aguinid Falls: Php200
Lunch: Php114
Bus to Cebu City: Php310
Dinner at Zubochon: Php490

Day 3:

- Depart for Dalaguete at 6 am via bus (South Bus Terminal)
- Drop off at Dalaguete Town Proper
- From town proper, ride habal-habal to jump-off of Osmena Peak.
- Trek. Pak na pak ang scene sa taas!
- Ride habal-habal to Kawasan Falls (Skip this.)
- Ride habal-habal to Mainit Spring and Montaneza Falls. Magpainit ka muna dito.
- Ride habal-habal to Inambakan Falls. Rest and swim.
- Ride habal-habal to Hidden Falls/Haden Falls(nakatago talaga sya).
- Ride bus back to City.
- Dinner at Buddies.

Expenses (2pax):
Taxi to South bus terminal: Php73
Bus to Dalaguete: Php210
Tourguide with transpo: Php2000
Entrance to Kawasan Falls: Php60
Entrance to Mainit Spring: Php40
Entrance to Inambakan Falls: Php40
Entrance to Hidden Falls: Php50
Bus to Cebu City: Php262
Taxi to hotel: Php75
Dinner at Buddies: Php290

Day 4:

- City tour and rest day.
- Visit Fort San Pedro
- Basilica Minore del Sto. Nino/Sto. Nino Museum
- Magellan’s Cross
- Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral
- Buy souvenirs at Shamrock.

Expenses (2pax):
Lunch at Zubochon: Php685
Taxi to Fort San Pedro: Php93
Entrance to Fort San Pedro: Php60
Entrance to Sto. Nino Mueseum: Php60
Shamrock: Php2000 (mine)

Day 5:

- Depart for Bohol, 5 am ferry trip
- Countryside Tour and Loboc River Cruise

Expenses (2pax):
Taxi to port: Php100
Countryside Tour and Loboc River Cruise: Php1800
Ferry (Oceanjet): Php1300
Souvenirs: Php500

Day 6:
Ocean Adventure (Dolphin watching at Pamilacan Seas, Snorkeling at Balicasag Island, Virgin Island sandbar)

Expenses (2pax):
Ocean Adventure Package: Php3500


June 18, 2016

Random Thoughts About Travelling: Part 3

"Sometimes I hate my boobs when I travel."

There are no boobs here, you f**ktard. 

1) Having big boobs is sometimes a struggle. Have you experienced bumping someone at the airport or at the bus terminal and somehow his elbow touched one of your twins? I feel like I’m going to explode whenever this happens. “Pwedeng hwag kang dumikit sakin punyeta!” Whether you’re a friend or not please keep a distance from me when your elbow and my boobs are just of the same height or level. Dude, it does hurt you know, physically and emotionally.

My tip: Put a barricade on your twins by hugging yourself. Or you could use one of those metallic bras, if they do exist.

2) Sometimes, I’m so paranoid that the person sitting beside me on the bus or the plane is looking at them even though he’s not.

Tip: Always bring a big bag or a blanket and use it to cover your twins when you're uncomfortable.

3) It’s hard to use a sling bag. Using a sling bag will make your boobs more noticeable. It’s like holding a placard near your boobs with the words “Look at my boobs! Look at it! Looooook!”
Tip: Don’t use a sling bag.

4) Running is sometimes a struggle. It’s not that they’re heavy, they just bounce in all places and all directions.  Boobs be like “I’m fabulous! I’m fabulous!”
Tip: Same as number 1.

5) You will always look sexy on any kind of clothing especially those that are body fitting and V-necks.
Tip: Who cares! I like wearing V necks.


Mt. Daguldol (Mis)adventure

Mt. Daguldol (Mis)adventure

Meet King, my older sister who looks younger than me. 

My sister decided to climb because she’s turning 30...two years from now. As a very supportive younger sister I agreed to plan our climb. But she’s a bit annoying because she wanted a major climb and I don’t because I’m a pabebe climber- I don’t want to climb high and difficult-to-climb mountains. Before you start on me that it’s not that hard to climb 4/9 (and up) mountains I am telling you to stop. What works on you doesn’t really work on me. End of discussion. I just want to climb and be with nature and forget everything else. Even though I am not really sure on what I am trying to forget. Going back, since my sister didn’t really bother reading anything about Mt. Daguldol (672 MASL) I tried to read reviews and guides as much as I can and eventually came up with our own itinerary.

Syempre, sya ang bida. :D 

Since we were coming from Quezon City, we woke up at around 3 in the morning to catch the 4 am trip to San Juan, Batangas (via ALPS) at the Araneta Bus Terminal. Well, there were no buses bound for San Juan at the Araneta Bus Terminal (which is contrary to what the ALPS website claims). This is why I have trust issues. We asked the bus driver if there will be trips to San Juan and he just told us to ride their bus and they’ll drop us at Exit-I-can’t-remember where we can we ride a jeep to San Juan. So we took the bus that is bound for somewhere-i-am-not-familiar-with-as-long-as-i-get-to-be-in-batangas. Move on na lang tayo.

On the brighter side, the locals were very helpful to us giving us directions and what jeep to ride and so forth. We had three jeep rides before we reached Barangay Hugom and we arrived around 8 in the morning which is still early (I think). We registered and hired a guide who was somewhat old but has the strength of a horse. We started the trek right away after registering and my, I got tired easily. It's not really advisable to climb when you only had 2 hours of sleep and you're with an older sibling who keeps telling you "Ang bagal nyo naman."

Mt. Daguldol has a well established and relatively difficult trail. It rained the day before our climb so the trail was muddy and a bit challenging. 

Testing the chuck's limit.

The view isn’t as picturesque as compared to the other mountains I have climbed but it’s still a nice climb. We didn’t stay long at the peak and descended early because the weather wasn’t very cooperative. Well, it rained while we were descending! So we stopped and looked for a cover and ate chocolates until the rain stopped. This was my most "stressed out" climb just because rain.

At the summit.

I apologize because I can't help you with the itinerary. There are lots of them in the internet. Just have fun! :D


May 31, 2016

5 Types of People I Met in Japan

1) Fakes.

Just because Maikos (real or not?).

I'm not really sure if they were real or not but their very elaborate make up and fancy head dresses caught my attention.

2) The Japinos!

Filipino and Japanese in one. I met these three sisters who where my friend's friends. They were the nicest people I met in Japan. They toured us around the Namba and Umeda area and brought us to nice restaurants. They also taught us what to do and not to do while in Japan and some basic Japanese. And lastly, they taught us the right pronuciation of "Ki o tsukete". 

And they're amazing! Couldn't say anything better.

3) The creepy old man.

I met him at Osaka Castle. He didn't introduce his self; he just approached me and told me to go with him because he will share a story about the castle and the emperors that lived there. At the back of my mind, who is this guy? I went with him because he doesn't really look scary. At first he was speaking in English but then he started speaking Japanese and my, he walks too fast!!! Dude, I don't speak Jap and I just had an injury. 

4) The friendly old ladies.

Unlike #3, they're friendly not in a creepy way. They smile a lot and they're so cute (Coach Anzai of Slamdunk cute). We learned from them that the bus is usually late when it's 5 pm (we were in Ginkakuji area). Their english isn't that bad but sometimes they forget that I don't understand Japanese and they continue talking and I try  to pretend I understand them.
"Yeah, kamehame wave!"

I asked them if we can have a picture with them and they were hesitant at first but they give in due to my persistence. I just love old people like them; they looked so happy and adorable. :)

5) Burgis.

I thought they were the most boring and plain people in Japan. So I googled (because they look mysterious to me) "salary men japan" and I wasn't disappointed. Well, for starters they are very well dressed that you'll feel very poor when you sit beside them on trains. But when the night comes, they're just the same as you; drowning their selves with beer and be crazy.

Of course, the briefcase.


May 30, 2016

Random Thoughts About Travelling: Part 2

Don't worry about money, just travel. Bullshit.

There are a lot of blogs out there that tell you that you can travel any place in the world even if you are, you know, poor. You know the idea of "Just travel, everything will fall to place when you're out there. Don't worry about money." etc. Bullshit.

Travelling isn't about packing your bags and going to wherever your feet will lead you. You can not just fly to a place and ask around what to do. That's not how it works. You need to do it the right way and not just "Fuck it, I'm travelling".

Whenever I travel I save, plan and budget. I watch out for seat sales and check into decent but cheap hotels. When it comes to food, I can eat at stalls found in the street.

Research. Plan. Save. 

Do me a favor, don't you post on FB or Instagram "XXXX for 5$ a day" when in fact you relied on other people's  kindness to stay alive during your travel. Peasant. 


Bawal ang Pabebe sa Calayan

Bawal ang Pabebe sa Calayan

Pabebe, to my understanding, is used to describe people who act and talk like children thinking they are cute but they actually end up looking stupid and annoying.

Calayan is an isolated island north of Babuyan Channel. Going there isn’t easy and it requires a lot of patience and people that are pabebe shouldn’t go or even think of going to this island unless they stop being pabebe.

Eighteen. Eighteen hours to reach the island.
Claveria, which is the entry point to Calayan, can be reached by bus with around 12 hours travel time. From Claveria, you’ll ride a boat for six hours that is extremely uncomfortable: exposed to the suns’ scorching heat, seated on a very hard bench while listening to metal (c/o engine noise). Our boat ride felt like forever until we sighted two dolphins.

You’ll get wet.
The weather is unpredictable. On our journey from Calayan back to Claveria, it was a bit cloudy and windy. We stayed at the upper back part of the boat and guess what, we got wet the moment it sailed. The waves were big and kept on splashing on our face and body – it was like that the whole time until we reached Claveria Port. Feel na feel ko ang pagiging basang tuyo: maalat at binilad sa kaarawan. Ang ganda kong tuyo. Hahaha!
Good thing our bags were covered in trash bags. We traveled with a sick elderly and what I admire about the boat personnel is that they made a covering for him and made sure that he’s comfortable.

There are no restaurants but you’ll get to eat REAL food.
There are no fancy restaurants - forget about caviar. During our stay, the foods we ate were either cooked by Tita Connie’s husband or her cousin. What I like about them is they suggest the best fish/seafood to try and the best way of cooking it (that is if we agree). My favorite was the lobster cooked in gata (coconut milk) with lots of garlic.

No night life.
There is no night life, period. The locals wake up and sleep very early because they have a life unlike you who hate Mondays and need an alarm to wake up.

Calayan is a wonderful island with wonderful people. Filipinos are known for their hospitality and for me, the locals of Calayan are the most hospitable people I’ve met in the country. Our guide brought us to his in-law’s house to rest. They have a huge yard with lots of coconut trees. I sat there watching their pet pig sleeping then they offered us buko, for free. It warms my heart that even though we’re tourists they treated us like their own visitor. 


February 27, 2016

Calayan Travel Guide

Calayan Travel Guide

Calayan, sometimes called Babuyanes Islands or simply Babuyanes, is a municipality of Cagayan surrounded by Balintang Channel on the north, which separates the islands from Batanes, West Philippine Sea on the west, Pacific Ocean on the east and Babuyan Channel on the south, which separates them from mainland Luzon. Due to the abundance of pig in the area, locally known as Babuy, the islands were called Babuyanes.

Babuyanes is composed of small islands: Calayan, Camiguin, Dalupiri, Fuga, Babuyan Claro and Didicas with Calayan being the town center. Ilocano is the native tongue of the locals of Calayan while those living in Babuyan Claro can speak “Ikarog” which originated from Ivatan dialect from Batanes.

According to some records, Calayan is called such because of the abundance of ginger, known as laya in Ilocano. The place was called Calayaan and was later shortened to Calayan.

*Calayan was a part of Batanes during the 19th Century. It became a part of cagayan in the early 20th. I got all this information from a local paper provided by tita Tess.

How To Get There

Calayan is a remote island in Cagayan (Valley) thus it is not easy to reach. The island can only be reached via boat (lampitaw) from the port of Claveria. It is best to contact someone from Calayan (Tita Tess or Tita Connie) before going there so they could arrange for your boat ride. Fee is Php 500 pesos per person.

Good to know: The boat is an ordinary boat that carries goods from Claveria to Calayan. The number of passengers it can accommodate depends on the size of the boat. There are no seats, no sun shade and you have to bear with the engine’s noise. Bawal ang pabebe sa Calayan. There’s a chance that you’ll get wet. Boat ride to Calayan takes around six hours and that is if the weather is nice.
*After our boat ride my friend and I talked like we’re 10 meters apart.

To reach Claveria Port from Metro Manila, you could ride a bus bound for Claveria or fly to Laoag City then take a van bound for Claveria.

Contact numbers:
Tita Tess – 09399158667 / 09298375737
Tita Connie – 09215349231

Where To Stay

San Jose Inn
There are two inns in Calayan: TPS Homestay owned by Tita Tess and San Jose Inn owned by Tita Connie. We stayed at Tita Connie although we were supposed to stay at Tita Tess’. Both hostels are decent and clean but not air conditioned.

What To Do

I can’t comment on the island’s marine life since we did not snorkel. It wasn’t recommended by Tita Tess and Tita Connie but I think the island has a good snorkeling site. Ask the locals, they’re nice and friendly.

The beaches are beyond beautiful and peaceful. Some offer white sand beach with clear blue water while some have sand darker than the shade of gray. What I love about the beaches is the absence of unsightly restaurants and hotels nearby. It’s just you and the beach and some hermit crabs.

The island has three scenic coves: Sibang, Caniwara and Cababaan coves. Sibang and Cababaan have white sand beaches – Sibang is also a good camping site. Caniwara on the other hand has a rocky shore.

The Nagudungan Hill, which requires a short hike, gives an amazing view of the three coves. You could also watch the sunset from the hill.

Roam around Calayan and hike up to Canawaan and Bataraw falls. I don’t really recommend going to Canawaan unless you like adventure. First, it was hard to reach the waterfall since there is no well-established trail and it’s not a place locals love to visit. Our two guides don’t know where Canawaan is when we asked them so we asked some of the locals around who, apparently, aged around 9-10 year-old. It was frustrating because the way to the falls looked inaccessible; there were big boulders and fallen trees blocking way. Somehow we managed to cross the blockages. 

Canawaan Falls

Visit Tita Tess and buy wild berry wine. She is one the most accommodating people I have met. She has a little room where she makes wild berry wine. She invited us into her house where we drank wine – a lot of wine. We drank different blends, from low to high alcohol content.

Lastly, eat lobsters.

How To Get Around

There are few tricycles available but the best way to travel around is via motorbike. Again, you could ask Tita Tess, she’s the tourism head on the island (as of June 2015). Other parts of the road in Calayan are still underdeveloped so expect a bumpy ride.

Best Time To Go

The best time to go to Calayan is during summer (March to early June) when the weather is good. The waves get dangerously big during the wet season.

Good To Know:

There are no ATMS or banks in Calayan. Bring lots of cash and don’t worry about getting robbed because Calayan is safe. Zero crime rate. During our stay, we leave the door (in the veranda) and windows of our room open when sleeping.

Due to its isolated location, Calayan has limited electricity which is 12 pm – 12 am.

Summer in Calayan is very hot (like Zac Efron hot). That’s why we leave our door and windows open.

Bring waterproof bags or garbage bags (like we did) to protect your belongings from the waves. Even though the weather is nice, the waves get pretty big sometimes. Just waterproof everything! 

The locals understand and speak Tagalog.

For the food, there is one eatery in Calayan  but I forgot its name; our food was prepared by Tita Connie's cousin. 

How Much To Bring

The money you will bring actually depends on how many wild berry wine you’re going to purchase. :D Kidding. 

Below is the list of our expenses in Calayan for your reference.
Description Cost
Bus to Claveria Php750.00
Tric from Claveria Market to Port Php70.00
Lampitaw Php500.00
Tric from Calayan wharf to San Jose Inn Php100.00
Motorbike rent: from San Jose Inn to Sibang and  Php300.00
Nagudungan Hill  
Motorbike rent: from San Jose Inn Bataraw and Php750.00
Canawaan Falls  
Room rent/night Php250.00
Food (for 3 days at San Jose Inn, yes including lobsters) Php1,000.00
Boat rent (roamed around the whole Calayan Island) Php4,000.00
there were two of us so Php2000/pax  
Wild Berry Wine/bottle Php180.00
Honey/300 mL bottle Php150.00

That's all for today. Here's Zac Efron :D

-good day!-