Hotspot (Boracay Expedition)

Via Zest Air (delayed as usual), we travelled south to Kalibo.  From there, a van transferred us from Kalibo to Caticlan, probably an hour or so.  Then arrived and met with the client Discovery Shores.  They were the ones who arranged our transportation and accommodations.  If you have the luxury to afford their rates then better check this site: =)

Boracay is a small island of the Philippines located approximately 315 km (196 mi) south of Manila and 2 km off the northwest tip of Panay Island in the Western Visayas region of the Philippines.  The island comprises the barangays of Manoc-Manoc, Balabag, and Yapak municipality of Malay, province of Aklan. The island is administered by the Philippine Tourism Authority and the provincial government of Aklan.

2011 was actually a blast.  I never thought that I will end this year by travelling down south cost-free; expressing my deepest gratitude to my former colleague, RSB.  The best part of this trip is that it is a one-day work engagement forecasted to a week-long vacation.  Pigging out (seafood galore) was actually the main activity as opposed to swimming, which I am not really keen on.  Snorkelling and island hopping are the only personal costs we incurred.  And damn, I really hate saltwater for giving me rushes or any activities related to it for making me woozy; but as the saying goes, just make the most out of it.  Albeit crowded, splendour still one can utter with the dusk over the horizon close within our reach.

I enjoyed your company, I genuinely did and I genuinely am.  Should I be given a chance to rectify things out, I will make it up to you.  Unfortunately, there’ll be none. The oxymoron of being the best and the worst still applies and I am either stuck or at Newton’s first law of motion.

Rocky Road (Mt. Pinatubo Expedition)

The road more travelled.  A day in February when all was dark and dull as the Backpackers traversed the trail to the crater.  For the rates and details, just consider this site

For most, the end goal of the trip is just to reach the crater. But Miley’s right, it is the climb that matters; and when I say the climb, I am literal with this.  For us who can finance, we’ll just pay thousand of pesos and they will transport us via 4×4 jeep for about 45 minutes to an hour ride then drop us off at the initial trekking point.  But have you ever imagine the means of transport for those people (mostly aetas) living in the other side of refinement?  While riding at the back of the jeep, I noticed a family of four (parents with two children) walking the tracks and crossing the waters barefooted with me wondering on how far they have come and how long until they reach their destination.

I am living in a society bombarded with options; as opposed to others who have none at all.

I Have Returned (Tacloban City)

A day peek at the northern part of Leyte with the Bisaya and Warays.  Absconded to discover the nature the city has to offer given the fact that there are no scheduled field visits this time.  2 weeks fieldwork and stay at Hotel Alejandro (which I believe my room to be worth P1,600k+ per night).  Best hotel so far the fact that it narrates the nation’s history along its corridors; I would definitely recommend this to travellers out there.

Going back, damo nga salamat (thank you) to Ate My and Sir Ayan for letting me experience the wonders (Sto. Nino Shrine/ MacArthur’s Park/ San Juanico Bridge).  The feeling of not being able to comprehend their dialect is a challenge but at least after my 2-weeks stay, I learned several Waray words from them.

Sto. Nino Shrine:

Entrance Fee of P200.00 good for 3 persons

+ P60.00 for additional person

+ P30.00 for every camera

(tour guide included, but only good for 30 minutes)

13 guest rooms ornamented with different native materials are the highlights inside this mansion.  You’ll appreciate how one can preserve such memories while retaining the quality of all the fittings displayed.  Perfect place for photo op but just be nimble as the tour guide is kind of strict.

‘I have returned’.  – opening statement of MacArthur’s proclamation to the People of the Philippines.   MacArthur Landing Memorial was built to commemorate the historic return of Gen. Douglas MacArthur to Philippine shores on October 20, 1944.  You have to ride a jeepney from the city proper going to Palo, Leyte.  Then take a tricycle (P10.00 per head) to the shrine itself.

We ended the day by walking the length of San Juanico Bridge, which is considered the Philippines’ longest bridge spanning a body of seawater.   Its longest length is a steel girder viaduct built on reinforced concrete piers, and its main span is of an arch-shaped truss design (c/o wikepedia).  If you are into long walks and trekking, then this will not be a problem for you.  30-minutes will do but if you will bring your camera with you, I bet that you’ll take longer than that.

Caption: The left photo (the road going to Leyte); the other heading to Samar! =)