How to go

Voyage to Paradise: How to Get to Islas de Gigantes

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A few months ago, Kaye and I embarked on another thrilling adventure to celebrate my 28th birthday. After braving North Cotabato’s Asik-Asik Falls the previous year, we were set on to visit another up and coming Philippine tourist destination that will surely whet the appetite of thrill-seeking travelers around the world. Hailing from the humble province of Northern Iloilo, I present to you: Islas de Gigantes.

Islas de Gigantes

Islas de Gigantes

As with my other travel blog posts, this will be an instructional guide on how to get to Gigantes Islands. But, before I proceed with the step-by-step guide, below is the TL;DR version of this post:

Your Destination -to- Iloilo City -to- Gigantes Norte
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Time Machine In Disguise: Hong Kong Disneyland

Being a young adult nowadays can be quite stressful. Waking up early, drowning in the sea of paperwork, budgeting limited finances and some personal drama seem like a rinse and repeat process for 20-something people like myself. Which is why taking a breath of fresh air and some healthy distraction from reality can now be considered a necessity, even a luxury for others. Luckily, there’s this place in Hong Kong than can give that necessary breather you were hoping for. And not only that, you get to experience being a kid again, even just for a day. This is an account of our Hong Kong Disneyland experience, a day inside the world-famous theme park that felt like a time machine in disguise.

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Return to Boracay: Cliff Diving at Ariel’s Point

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Goodbye, cruel world! XD

If there was one thing that I regretted during my first visit to Boracay last 2011, is that I didn’t research enough to know about the famous party place hidden away from Boracay’s busy white beach, Ariel’s Point. Today, visiting Ariel’s Point stands at  #1 on TripAdvisor’s Top Things To Do in Boracay. Is it only hype? Or is it the real deal? We’re about to find out.

Here’s an excerpt on Ariel’s Point’s website on how to get there:

Trips to Ariel’s Point depart daily at 11:30 a.m. from Ariel’s House, which is located along Boracay’s main White Beach near Station 1 between Club Paraw and the Obama Grill.  At the current time, tickets for Ariel’s Point can only be purchased through the Boracay Beach Club (just across the main road from Ariel’s House in Station 1).  You can reach Ariel’s House and the Boracay Beach Club by walking along White Beach (about a 10 minute walk from D’Mall) or hiring a tricycle and asking them to bring you to the Boracay Beach Club in Station 1.  

For more information about reservation and how to contact them, visit their website HERE.

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Return to Boracay: How to Get to White Beach from Kalibo


Last June 2013 marked my return to one of the most celebrated tourist destinations of the country, Boracay Island. However, there are some firsts that I’ve encountered during this trip. For one, this will be my first time to board the Davao-Kalibo direct flight from Cebu Pacific. I’ll also be joined by three of my childhood buddies (they’re first-timers; which means I’ll be filling the role of tour guide again). Enough with the chatting, let’s get down to business. This is a rundown on how to go to White Beach from Kalibo. But, before I proceed with the step-by-step guide, below is the TL;DR version of this post:

Kalibo to Caticlan to White Beach

Type of Payment

Amount

Van from Kalibo to Caticlan Jetty Port (1 hour & 30 minutes)

 Php200.00/head

Environmental fee

Php75.00/head

Caticlan jetty terminal fee

 Php100.00/head

Boat from Caticlan-Cagban jetty port (10 minutes)

 Php25.00/head

Tricycle from Cagban Port to White Beach (20 minutes)

 Php100.00/trip

Now, if you’re not lazy enough, do read the detailed guide below. These steps may save you valuable time and money on your future Boracay trip. 😀 (more…)

Thrills From Up North: Dahilayan Adventure and Forest Park

Dahilayan Adventure and Forest Park

Last February 2013, Kaye and I went to Cagayan de Oro City boarding the Davao-CDO direct flight from Cebu Pacific for the first time (travelling by bus was more expensive than the promo fare we got and will take 7-8 hours). But our main purpose in going to CDO isn’t really the city itself but its famous neighboring town of Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon. And here, ladies and gentlemen, lies the Dahilayan Adventure Park: home of Asia’s longest dual zip line.

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Bohol Uncut (Part 2) – Tarsier, ATV, Chocolate Hills and Bohol Bee Farm

Chocolate Hills, Bohol

Chocolate Hills, Bohol

If you missed Part 1 of our Bohol Countryside Tour, click HERE.

We’re midway on our Bohol adventure and yet the island still has its many surprises up its sleeve. But in order to cool down our nerves from the exhilarating experience that was the Loboc Zip Line, we headed next to the sanctuary of the world’s smallest primate and cute mascot of Bohol, the Tarsier.

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Samal’s Pride: Pearl Farm Beach Resort

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Well, it’s that time of the year again. No, it’s not Christmas or New Year I’m talking about. Rising temperatures, the scorching heat of the sun, the intense urge to order halo-halo and the growing call to hit the beach… SUMMER! Davao is no stranger to beautiful beaches as Samal Island is just a boat ride away from the city. However, with a plethora of beach resorts lying around Samal Island, picking a resort can be confusing. As a standout from other beach resorts, one can never go wrong with Pearl Farm. 

The Pagoda

Pearl Farm Parola

Kaye and I aren’t really strangers to Pearl Farm, albeit a few years removed from our first visits, respectively. For rates, boat schedules and other booking concerns, you can go directly through their official website at http://www.pearlfarmresort.com/. However, being extra aggressive in finding the best rates, we were able to get a cheaper rate. A bed and breakfast package at Samal house (overnight stay with complimentary breakfast buffet) shelled us a total of Php6,500.00. Note that this was last year’s price (March 2012) so prices this time may vary. The published rate for the same package is at Php4,000.00 per person so that’s a total savings of Php1,500.00.

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Boracay 2011 (Part 2)

For Part 1 of our Boracay adventure (arrival, parasailing, white beach, etc.), check out https://rodifiedopinion.wordpress.com/2012/02/27/oh-my-boracay-part-1/

Due to the tiring activities we did (and the cocktails consumed) the previous day, waking up early in the morning seemed very challenging. We started the day with the complimentary breakfast by Hey! Jude Hotel. We also had coffee to counter the strong urge to sleep. We wouldn’t want to waste our time sleeping in freakin’ Boracay, would we?

A choice of the usual meat viand (bacon, ham, etc.), egg and rice or bread.

By 9am, we wandered again to white beach. The morning view of the coast was beautiful as ever. The sunny weather really added to the beauty of the scenery, not to mention the rather few tourists roaming around (possibly due to the late-night partying).

White Beach by day

We contacted Ron again for our planned activity that morning, helmet diving (a.k.a. reef walking). Since Ron had other clients to attend to, he referred us to his partner, Nino, for the booking assistance. He led us to Red Coral, one of the companies providing helmet diving activities in Boracay. (more…)

Boracay 2011 (Part 1)

I have been fantasizing about going to Boracay since I was in college. From what I have read and heard, the island seemed to have it all: white sand beaches, great food, crazy night life and a distinct culture only experienced there. On paper, the island more than deserves the moniker as the Philippines’ top tourist destination. But then when I was still a student, some factors didn’t permit my travel aspirations. Priorities had to be set and unfortunately, travelling was a luxury a mere student couldn’t afford. Fast forward a few years later, I was a student no more. And while the landscape may have changed, my desire to visit Boracay was still alive and burning. Last August 2011, Kaye and I finally pushed through our daring travel dream: to explore the island of Boracay for the first time.

The Island of Boracay

To read more about my recent Boracay trip last June 2013, check out the links below:

Return to Boracay: How to Get to White Beach from Kalibo

Return to Boracay: Parasailing and Flyfish

Return to Boracay: Cliff Diving at Ariel’s Point

Since we are from Davao City, going to Boracay isn’t that easy or cheap. Affordable, yes, but not cheap. Davao has no direct flights to Kalibo or Caticlan and we thought passing by Iloilo would be too time consuming (*UPDATE* There are now direct Davao-Kalibo  Cebu Pacific flights. I’ll be going back to Boracay this June via this route). We settled on the Davao-Cebu route and booked another flight going to Caticlan (through seat sales of course). We scheduled our trip last August (off-peak season) as it’s also my birth month. (more…)