July 21, 2016

Hong Kong and The Star Ferry

Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;

For tho' from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crost the bar.

 Token for HKD2.50 ;)

July 19, 2016

Touch Down Hong Kong: Hong Kong Museum of History to Victoria Harbor

It was our first time together abroad and her first travel out of the country. This must be something very special - Hong Kong was indeed very special for us.

We were early at NAIA Terminal 3 to secure a front row seat in a Cebu Pacific flight. The airline kiosk did not fail us. Adding to our luck was that, I thought there is still a terminal fee of Php550. I did not know that it is already included in our ticket! I forgot or its our lucky day? So it turned that we have an extra money for shopping and pasalubong, yey! ;)

Immigration Story

Lana was a bit scared when we were about to approach the immigration. She is aware of some immigration horror story. Intimidating question is sometimes fired by those personel inside the glass. The only remarkable question for Lana was "what is your IG account" Seriously, I do not know what is the point of that question. What is important, I was coaching her, is to tell the truth. So she gave her IG acount, the immigration officer checked it in her smartphone and hola, hello Hong Kong!

July 17, 2016

In Pictures: The Hong Kong Museum of History

Hong Kong Museum of History is one of the best museum I have ever seen. It showcase the heritage of Hong Kong from stone age to post British rule. They built a city inside the museum just to show their past and what they are now. They built forest and city inside the Museum. The government invested a lot just to demonstrate what Hong Kong then and what is Hong Kong now.

I like history so much that I always look for museum in my every travel. It should be part of my itirenary. 

July 08, 2016

Backpacking 101: Hong Kong and Macau Travel Guide, Budget and Itinerary

Hong Kong and Macau are the two of the most popular travel destinations in the world. Hong Kong is a quick pick for many because of the mouse – Disneyland – while Macau is gaining its own popularity rather than just a side trip for Hong Kong.

View from Victoria Harbor

I never thought that Hong Kong and Macau can be so exciting for a heritage enthusiast like me. Aside from the most popular destination in Hong Kong like Disneyland, Ngong Ping Cable Car and Victoria Peak, the heritage buildings of Hong Kong as well as its heritage towns and villages wowed me. Same thing for Macau, its a haven for me! I did not expect the unique cobbled streets surrounding the heritage buildings of Central Macau. I will tell you more when I write about each spots and places about Hong Kong and Macau.

In this travel guide I will try to help you build your own adventure in Hong Kong and Macau. I am a backpacker so expect that most of our activities here are DIY or “do it yourself” if not all.

Going to Hong Kong and Macau
Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific flies daily to Hong Kong and Macau. Filipinos do not need Visa to visit Hong Kong and Macau. 14 days is the maximum days of stay for Filipinos in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong International Airport

July 06, 2016

SanVa Hotel: A Budget Heritage Hotel in Macau

Cobbled streets and colonial row of houses squeezing in the small city of historic Macau. There are a lot of them in Rio Felicidade surrounding the old colonial buildings of Senado Square and the old Church of St. Paul now being called Ruins of St. Paul.

Picture from SanVa Hotel Website
A few meters away from Senado Square is a hotel named SanVa Hotel or Hostel. Entering in a small alley filled with beautiful colorful colonial houses is a 100 year old tavern converted into a hotel in the 1930's. You'll love your neighborhood when you live there as the aesthetics of the old Macau remains for the tourist to appreciate.

July 05, 2016

Nurture Wellness Village: A Sanctuary in Tagaytay

A wellness well deserved for everyone. Redefine wellness by means of your own personal choices because as I have discovered recently, wellness is a C.H.O.I.C.E.S, as in:

Controling your Stress,
Healthy Eating,
Oxygynate with movement,
Immune boost,
Cleance your body,
Embrace natural healing theraphy and
Sleep at least eight hours a day!

One hour to two hours away from Manila is a sanctuary that is known for years for some and is being a hiding place for people who wants to get away from the usual buzz of the city. Indeed Nurture Wellness Village is a place to unwind and pause for a while because it is a sanctuary built for people who cares and knows how to deserve a break.

May 26, 2016

Remembering the Bataan Death March at Capas National Shrine

"This memorial is dedicated to the brave men and women who defied the might of the invaders at Bataan, Corregidor and other parts of the Philippines during World War II. Thousands died in battle, during the Death March, and while in captivity. Thousands more endured inhuman conditions at the prison camp in Capas, Tarlac. They suffered in the night so that their countrymen would wake to the dawn of freedom."

We read them on books we see them in TV re-enacted many times, they are the fallen heroes of Bataan Death March. Thousand men of mostly Filipinos died during WWII when the Japanese Empire invaded the Philippines. 35,000 men walked under the heat of the sun from Bataan to Capas Tarlac.

May 23, 2016

Weekend Beach Camping in Tingloy Island

Summer is not complete without a beach get away bonding with my friends and new friends. This time our feet brought us to Masasa Beach in Tingloy Island in the Province of Batangas. This island, though far from what I have expected gave us a story for our summer. A beach experience in Masasa that is far and new from the previous summer I ever had. It is correct, every summer has a story - our story of friendship and adventure in Masasa Beach in Tingloy Island has that special spot in my heart.   

Locals in Tingloy Port

April 26, 2016

Bicol's Gem: Caramoan Group of Island

Ten years ago Caramoan was just a dream. When the dream becomes a reality it seems like I have entered a paradise in a far away land. The moment I stepped onto my first island in Caramoan, I was ready to forget Manila, everything was so alluring and mesmerizing. No wonder many seasons of Survivor shows all over the world were shot here and even up to now.

Caramoan is a first class municipality in the Bicol Region with less than 50,000 inhabitants. It has more or less 70 kilometers of irregular coastline surrounded by vast ocean – Philippine Sea of the Pacific Ocean on the North. Aside from its numerous islets it has 10 major island municipality open to public.

April 19, 2016

The Aetas of Mount Pinatubo and The Trip That Almost Did Not Happen

Two weeks before the climb I was informed by my contact in Capas that the local government of Botolan, Zambales is charging each climbers an additional Php700.00. I was worried that those who confirmed would back out because of the sharp increase in total fees. And yes one by one they backed out. But I was determined to continue the climb even if it means commuting so long as we reached 5 to share the cost of the 4x4. In the end we reached 10 just enough to rent a van ;)

Mt. Pinatubo is one of the most expensive mountain to climb but I do not regret spending money to see how massive destruction can be so beautiful and jaw dropping.

We arrived just enough to escape the sun’s wrath for a while. We rode the 4x4 for one and a half hours under the comfort of the clouds and the thrilling slope of the lahar. The 4x4 itself is an attraction because of the adrenaline it produces whenever it gets bumpy and wild. It is like an Amusement Park ride actually.