Day 1: Traveling to Romblon

MV St. Ignatius - 2GO (Odiongan - Caticlan)

Romblon province is a composed of 3 major islands: Tablas, Romblon and Sibuyan. Sha’s relatives from her mother’s side is in Tablas but we wanted to explore some more. The plan is to go to Sibuyan, Carabao Island, Looc, Tablas and last stop is Boracay all within 6 days. We had to do a lot of inter-island transfers and travel via land by riding passenger jeepneys and tricycles.

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Simple Beach Life at Isla Reta

Isla Reta, Talicud, Samal Island 3


Because I won free round trip tickets from Airphil Express during the Davao Adventure Trip previously sponsored by them last May, I decided to revisit Davao last September 2011. I didn’t really have much time to explore Davao when I first came there last May because we have a fixed itinerary. I know Davao is really a big place, so the focus of my trip to Davao last September was to have a chance to go to Talicud and beach bum. I am coming back to Davao on May 2012 anyway for the Davao Food Appreciation Tour :).

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Silay Ancestral House Hopping and Guapple Pie Food Tripping

Rizal Street in Silay

Rizal Street in Silay City (main street going to and from Bacolod City)

Silay City is popularly known as the “Paris of Negros Occidental” because this was where the rich hacienderos and pillars of the sugarcane industry in Negros Occidental lived during the late 1800’s. Silay is also the bastion of arts and culture – thanks to Jose Pitong Ledesma, a pianist and conductor, the first one to bring the European operattas and zarzuelas in Silay. High Culture prevails in this area (if we are to look at this in the Western Marxist perspective). If you are into historical architectures, local arts and culture, this is the place you must visit. Silay City is just around 30 – 45 minutes away from Bacolod City. This is also where the new Bacolod Airport is located.

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Visita Iglesia in Southern Iloilo

San Joaquin Church in Iloilo 12

Parish of San Joaquin

During Holy Week, many Filipinos do the “Visita Iglesia” ( or Church Visits in English), a tradition done every Holy Thursday during Lent. This is to commemorate the 14 stations of the cross. Traditionally, 7 churches are supposed to be visited, praying 2 stations of the cross per church. In the modern times, the person who does Visita Iglesia visits 14 churches instead of the 14.

Iloilo is one of the provinces in Western Visayas that was infiltrated by Roman Catholicism and is frequented by those who still practice Visita Iglesia. Whether you are a believer of Roman Catholicism or not, it is still worthwhile to see these churches — for the sake of historical and art appreciation purposes. Here are some suggestions and must visits when doing Visita Iglesia in Southern Iloilo:

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Exploring Marina Bay at Night

Marina Bay Sands
Marina Bay Sands

After a hearty dinner at Lau Pa Sat with my former officemates, we walked around Marina Bay. I never thought we’d walk from One Raffles Place to Fullerton Hotel. Some of you might think it’s silly to walk around that far but we really do not have a choice. The roads were closed since it’s F1 season there. It may be tiring but it was a fun experience. 😀

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Honda Bay Island Hopping

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One of the exciting things to do when in Puerto Princesa is island hopping. If you’re an adventurer, this is the one for you. This begins in Honda Bay, a 20 – 30 minute drive from the city proper. We booked a package at gopalawan.travel and paid $68 (for 2 people) via Paypal. Method of payment is very convenient, we didn’t have to go to the bank or pay cash. A van picked us up at Pads (our hotel) and also brought us back after the tour.

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Binondo: The Chinatown of Manila

Filipino-Chinese Friendship Arch at Binondo
Filipino-Chinese Friendship Arch

Binondo, Manila’s third district, is also known as Manila’s Chinatown. We just had a photo walk here where our route began a couple or more meters away from the foot of Jones Bridge (just outside Original Savory). We were then welcomed by the picturesque Filipino-Chinese Friendship Arch.

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