Siquijor Island and Dumaguete City Itinerary

“The clear blue water is amazing that it bring content and everlasting happy vibe”

I am committed to travelling and enjoying my life. When PISO fare game is on, I make sure to get the most value in getting a flight anywhere in the country. So, after my Hong Kong trip. I was able to use my GetGo points, book a roundtrip ticket to Dumaguete city and wait for almost 7 months to make this trip possible.

I already change in preparing for my trip. I became more out-of-the-box than seccuring all the details of my hotel check-ins, transpo and budget cuts. I book the tricycle tour in Siquijor, check the are for hotels and pack my bags with my partner to Dumaguete City. We have an early flight at 0500, morning flights are very exhausting. The airport is full and almost full lobby seating. We arrive early at KFC and wait for boarding.

We boards on time but the plane delayed flight for 15 minutes. We arrive at Dumaguete Airport passed 0630. We will not make it to the 0700 Ferry ride to Siquijor Island. We rode in thr tricycle to the Port. We are able to booked the Ferry ticket at 0800 trip. Have some coffee and piyaya while waiting. The trip to Siquijor is almost 2 hours.


Then, our hired tour guide Kuya Jun Mark fetch us at Siquijor Island to check in and start the Tour. We check-in to Replica Manor for 1 night only, get dress and start our tour in Siquijor. The place reminds me of Siargao but quite and it is Majestic. It like there is hidden secret and it will be always remains a mystery.

Here: are the place included on our Tricycle Tour. It was comfy and most road are already fix. Very good sunny day to bask under the blue sky.

> St Francis of Assisi Church

> Paliton Beach. Free entrance as of now. Good place to start the trip.

>Capilay Spring Park. Free entrance, the spring is dry when we went it there so we just took a couple of minutes.

>Enchanted Old Balete with Fish Spa. Entrance fee is Php 20.00. Fish spa and you can buy souvenir here.

> Broom Shot. Donation only.

> Cambugahay Falls. No entrance fee but guide is mandatory. Swing fee for unlimited time is Php 20/pax. We gave Php 200.00 to our guide for the 2 of us.

> Molave Man-Made Forest. Free picture Taking.

> Salagdoong Beach. Entrance is Php 30/pax. You can cliff dive and swim.

> Cang Isok Old House. Oldest house in Siquijor since the Spanish Era.

> Mangrove

> Pan Bisaya. Famous bakery that bakes using old charcoal oven. Sarap ng food!

> Dagsa Restaurant. Good resto but the mosquitoes are annoying AF.

After we ate at Dagsa, we finsih our road trip in Siquijor and catch some rest in the inn. It was a very good day to start.

Siquijor Budget:

> Airpot Tricycle to Port: Php 150.00
> Ferry Ride: Php 130/pax
> Terminal Fee: Php 15/pax
> Tricycle Tour Fee: Php 900.00
> Food and Entrance Fees: Php 400 – 1000.00 (Php 300.00 without food budget)


* Ride the Montenegro RORO ride for comfort ferry trip to Siquijor. The in-between ferry rides are very uncomfortable and hot.
* Eat in Karinderias if you want to buy cheap meals. Hotel and restaurant are like very Manila rate in pricing.
* Prepare for a long ride and get energized for the whole ride.



We woke up very early in Replica Manor to get ready. Back to Dumaguete for our Apo Island and Manjuyod trip. We have breakfast and coffee. We pack our bags and our guide send us off to the port. This time we are able to ride the Montenegros RORO which make a big from the ferry ride yesterday. Arriving to Dumaguete City, we went to Harold’s Mansion to check in for the rest of the days of our stay in Negros.

We are not into city tours so we decide to chill and relax for the rest of the day. We ate at Jo’s and Sans Rival for lunch. Booked our Apo Island Trip for tomorrow and relax at the Sea Port Boulevard. Lots of balot and street food vendor are here. We just sit and look around people around us.


> Breakfast at Replica: Php 120.00 Silog and coffee
> Tryke to Port: Php Php 100.00
> Ferry Siquijor to Dumaguete: Php 130.00/pax
> Terminal Fee: Php 15/pax
> Tryke to Harold’s: Php 50.00
> Harold’s Mansion: Php 1000/night, we paid Php 3000 for 3 nights stay
> Jo’s Inasal: Price start at Php 99.00 2 rice na!
> Sans Rival Cakes and Pastries: Cakes, Sansrival and coffee. Price starts @ Php 30.00.
> Tryke around Dumaguete city: Php 8.00/pax per ride.


This is best of our entire tour. I always wanted to go here and enjoy snorkelling activity. We woke up early to start the day, call time is 0700. We went to the diving shop to pay for the tour and get our gears. The tour includes coffee, sandwich, bananas, lunch (pansit and egg), roundtrip open van transfer and snorkelling gear. Good thing we are check-in in Harold’s so its easier for us. Point to point transfer only.


* You dont need to extra clothes because there is no bath time. So just bring money, some snacks and your swimming attire.
* Water is available in the boat
* Secure your gadget, especially water cameras and phone as the diving spots are really deep.
* Listen to the guides and be responsible when the turtles are around. Just take picture.


> Harold’s Snorkelling Fee: Php 1200.00
> Dinner at KRI: Price start at Php 400.00 for dinner plates.

The experience with the turtles is very heart warming and I feel like I need to take care of the environment more than before. It was like the last frontier, it was an experience I cannot forget.


This is our last day in Negros, we are excited for our last trip. We woke up at 0300 to catch a 0430 ride to Bais City for our Manjuyod Sand Bar trip. We arrive in Bais City at 0630, ride a tryke to Manjuyod Port, ride a small boat and go to the sandbar. The Dolphin watching and mangrove forest tour were cancelled but we were not informed and paid full price.

The sandbar is over-rated but very photogenic. The photos will entice you to go here but it was beautiful to shoot the island. We bask under the cloudy turn sunny sky all morning. Ate fresh oysters and sea urchin for Php 20.00 each. Cancel dolphin watching tour due to bad weather and mangrove forest is close due to recent accident.


> Tryke Bus Terminal: Php 25.00
> Bus to Bais City: Php 80.00/pax per ride
> RT Tryke to Manjyod Port : Php 200.00
> Boat Rent Shared: Php 750/pax


* Wear you swimming gear before going to the port. CR is small and paid.
* Do not sleep at bus ride so you can see the Hacienda’s and Azucareras of Negros.
* Best to go there straight to hire a boatman, pricing is the same. November is off peak season so its ok to go there without boat hired in advance.
* Pack snacks, water is available in the boat. Boat have restrooms.
* Apply sunscreen as it gets too hot around 1000 onwards.
* Buy to local sellers, they are all around to support them.


We did not stay long in Bais City and went back to Dumaguete to get our souvenirs. This is one of the chill vacation I have, I am not exhausted unlike my other trip where I don’t get much sleep. This place is for eating, swimming, relaxing and having your own time. Our stay is only 4 nights and 5 days but it feels like a long vacation.


> Snacks at Tarbush: Php 100.00 for a big Shawarma wrap.
> Tryke around: Php 8/ride per pax
> Souvenir: Php 300.00 (magnet, key chains, pouches and coin purse)

I recommend to get to places without being in a hurry. Enjoy all rides and do not force your self to meet all place at a time. There is always time to go back to beaten path you did not pursue. I am Jei signing off now. See you next time Pirate!

Day 8: Last Day in Mindanao

“Make friends, have fun, travel forever and have memories that can last a lifetime”

– Fakir

Features: Hagimit Falls, Maxima Aqua Fun, Buying Souvenirs, Bangkeruhan Market, Day Tour in Kaputian Island

My 8 days and 7 nights Solo Backpacking in Mindanao

I woke up early, beat and with heavy heart. This will be my last day in Davao City. Grab a quick breakfast, pandesal and coffee near Daylight Inn. Chat with the local vendor and bid my farewell to Grace. She will be back in Manila on an early flight, mine will be at 2300. I went to Bangkeruhan to buy Pomelo and Durian for my family/friends. I tried Marang while waiting. Back to the inn, I pack my bags and check out. I stay in Daylight Inn covering my 3 nights in Davao for Php 250/night fan room. I will not recommend this place if you have other choices like My Hotel or other hostels around Davao. I’ve got tick bites all over my legs, swelling and itchy for the next days.

I went back to my friend Rosa’s place to drop my bag then start my day tour in Kaputian Island. I ride a jeepney from Davao Doctors to Aldevinco, fare cost Php 8.00 to buy my souvenirs. I bought my ref magnet, t-shirt, scarf and tie-dye pajama. Buying all those stuff cost me Php 370.00, I forgot the prices of each item (SORNA!). After buying my pasalubong I ride a jeepney from Aldevinco to Sasa Wharf for Php 15.00. I ride the barge to Babak Wharf for Php 10.00. Kuya Jay, the habal-habal driver is waiting in Babak Wharf. He will drop me to Hagimit Falls and Maxima Aqua Fun for Php 150.00, travel time 30 – 45 minutes. I did not agree on taking the day tour since I went to Monfort Cave the other night. But you can rent his service for Kaputian Island Day Tour for Php 800.00 – 1200.00 good for 2-3 pax. Kuya Jay contact: 0916 115 0189, he is really nice. I like him because he’s not nosy unlike other guides.

He drop me in Hagimit Falls, entrance fee cost Php 40.00 and parking fee for Php 5.00. The spring resort is really refreshing. The water is cold and swimming will be nice but I ditch it. I just want to check out the place, take some photos. I stayed here for a good 30 minutes. Then, we went straight to Maxima Aqua Resort. What a nice person Kuya Jay, I recommend him to my friends that went to Kaputian Island.

Maxima Aqua Fun, its infamous SUPER SLIDE attach from the cliff. I ditched Pearl Farm (too expensive for me). Last day in Davao should be filled with adrenaline and FUN. Day tour is Maxima Aqua Fun cost Php 300.00 in which you can stay from 0900 – 1700. I arrived around 1230, roam around and change to my swim attire. The resort attractions are really fascinating and not for the weak heart. I slide several times until waters filled my mouth, ears and nose. I jump from the diving board. Best thing to try is their WATER BLOB. Really exhilarating! It’s a must!

I got exhausted from the activities. My skin is burned from the sun. I met people who add me up in facebook. Last day here in Mindanao is nothing but fun! It’s time to go back in Davao City. A group of soldiers in vacation and me chipped in habal-habal back to Babak Wharf. These young people are brave and pride our country. it was nice to meet them.

Back to Sasa Wharf, I ride a jeepney to People’s Park downtown. I ate in Penong’s, I love their Inasal Chicken and unlimited rice for Php 98.00. Chow time in Davao is cheap and real good. Penong’s is in every corner of the city. After eating, I went back to Rosa’s apartment to get my things and bid goodbye to my college friend. From Ilustre St, there are jeepney to the airport. You can take a cab as well. Downtown Davao to Francisco Bangoy International Airport PUJ fare is php 16.00 – 20.00, taxi fare is Php 230.00 – Php 250.00. Grab Car/Taxi is also available in the city for your comfort.

I arrived at the airport at 2230, flight is schedule at 2305. Check in my bag, feel the infinite pricks on my skin and itchy tick bites. I board and dozed my way back to the bustling city of Metro Manila. I got home in Pasig City around 0200. Mindanao is the best trip of my life. I am going to do this until I can.

Ultimately, the overall trip cost me around Php 15000.00 including my airfare. I will provide the itinerary and budget on my next segment.

On my way to our next trip PIRATES!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.

Day 7: Exploring Samal and Kaputian Island

“Let the sun bathe you with goodness and a warm of life”

– Fakir

Features: Samal Island, Isla Reta, Babusanta Resort, Dayang Beach, Kaputian Island, Monfort Cave and Sta Ana Wharf

My 8 days and 7 nights Solo Backpacking in Mindanao

Walking around Davao City is tiring but I need to get up to finish the itinerary I set. Grace and I will explore Samal Island today. This is my 7th day, sun burned and a bit exhausted from the tour. We ride a jeepney from Daylight Inn to Sta. Ana Wharf around 0800 for Php 8.00. I did not check the ferry schedule so we are 1 hour ahead its departure. We grab a bite and buy ingredients for lunch. She brought TUNA and my mouth is watering. I am hoping lunch time could be near. HEHE!

The Isla Reta ferry departs from Sta Ana Wharf at 0900 – 0930. It will depart early if its full, unfortunately its off-peak and we need to wait a little bit longer. Fare cost Php 80.00 for a 20 – 30 minutes ride. Upon arriving in Isla Reta Beach Resort, the boat crew will ask if you are going to join the trip back to Sta Ana Whar at 1500. I did not sign up because I want to explore the island. Isla Reta entrance fee cost Php 100.00 and chairs and table are for free unless you check in into their cabana or rent their tents. Overnight stay can cost Php 300.00 – 1500.00 with accommodation.

The blue sky, warm sun and aquamarine water invite you to a peaceful serenity. Beach is really white and pristine. Real good relaxation. After we explore the place. I cook our lunch, I prepare my camp stove and Kapampangan cooking prowess for our Sinigang and grilled TUNA. This is the chill part of my travel. No jumping, no trekking or anything involves adrenaline rush. This place should be visit by peace who love low profile travels.

Swim, sunbath and drink all the beer you want. It’s already 1500, day trippers can now go back to town proper or can stay. I decide to stay to check out other resorts in Samal. Grace went back to the inn and call it a day. There is a boat going to Kaputian Island around 0500, so I have 2 hours to spare. I rent a habal – habal for Php 170.00 which an ultimate haggle price. Habal – habal rental cost Php 200.00 – 300.00 good for 2 pax.

I visited Dayang and Babusanta Beach Resorts which are more beautiful than Isla Reta. The sight is just endless blue sky and crystal clear water. I will go back here and stay for a couple of days to relax and drink all day. My habal driver is really nice and talk my way through the resorts for free. Entrance fees cost Php 70.00 – 80.00 each resorts. I save a lot because of him. I took my photos, drink fresh sweet coconut and swim a bit. We return to the wharf so that I can catch the last boat to Kaputian Island.

From Sta Cruz Port (Port near Isla Reta) to Kaputian Wharf the fare cost Php 10.00. Travel time is 3 minutes. The sleepy town of Kaputian also have their day tour and resorts that offers overnight accommodation from backpacking inns to expensive beach hotels like Pearl Farm. It’s almost night fall when I rent habal-habal for Php 230.00 to visit Monfort Bat Cave. From Kaputian wharf to Monfort cave travel time is 30 – 45 minutes. The day cave tour entrance fee Php 100.00, night tour cost Php 200.00. I was agitated because of the price increase but when I check out the caves. It’s mesmerizing, the bats are about to hunt and they re flying out of their caves. The price pays it off. I also recommend the night tour!

My habal driver (Kuya Jay) drop me off in Babak wharf back to the main land Davao. Sasa Wharf operates 24/7 transferring commuters and vehicles off Kaputian Island. Fare cost Php 10.00. From Babak to Sasa Wharf travel time is around 2 – 3 minutes. From Sasa Wharf to downtown Davao travel time is around 30-45 minutes fare cost is Php 23.00 – 25.00. Its night-time when I arrive San Pedro St., chow at Kusina Dabaw. Ordering their famous LOMI and SIOPAO, dinner cost Php 95.00.

I got tired from my adventure today. I will go back in Kaputian Island tomorrow. Last day in Mindanao will be awesome!

High five PIRATES!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.

Day 6: Davao City Tour

“Think, stop and chase all the worries away”
– Fakir

Features: Daylight Inn, Davao City walking tour, Philippine Eagle Center, Jack’s Ridge, Shrine of the Holy Infant Jesus of Prague, Running tour of Chinatown, Magsaysay fruit market, Davao’s Street Food, Roxas Avenue, Kusina Dabaw

My 8 days and 7 nights Solo Backpacking in Mindanao

I woke up tired from the night road travel from Manggagoy. I want to sleep more and ditch the day’s itinerary. Waking up in the safest city in the Philippines calms my tired nerves. Its 0800 in the morning, it’s already warm. I need to get up to meet my Davao-based friend Rosa. She welcome me to couch surf in her place but I decline because I know she is busy at work. I want to walk in/out of my place without letting other people be mindful about my state. This I regret 3 days after, Daylight Inn suits cheap backpacker budget but I had tick bites before I left the hostel. Anyway, rush to the common bathroom. I prepare myself for my Davao City Tour.

I went to my friend’s house, had some breakfast, endless chats, the MAJONGERA laugh we share and the life we are heading. TRAVELING THE WORLD. We squish the little time we have and continue later after her shift finish. I continue my itinerary in search of getting to my first stop. The Philippine Eagle Center.

I walk around Davao to check routes and after an hour I finally spot on the jeepney going to the center. From Davao City, you can ride the PUJ (air-conditioned and non air conditioned) at the Bangkeruhan Terminal. Fare cost Php 40.00 – 50.00, the eagle center is in Calinan and travel time is around 1 – 1.5 hours. DISCLAIMER: Vehicles around Davao run at maximum 60kph due to the City Ordinance. Once your in Calinan town, you need to hire habal – habal (motorcycle) going to the Philippine Eagle Center, fare cost Php 70.00 – 100.00 roundtrip. You can rent the habal – habal for touring around which includes visiting to the Eagle Center, Botanical Garden and the Crocodile farm. I skip the day tour though.

I arrive in the Eagle center, paid the initial entrance fee for Php 5.00 and Php 150.00 for the zoo pass. The eagles are huge and proud. These birds look small on photos. The center caters to different species of birds like falcons, owls and eagles (of course). Birds are sponsored by successful people and companies so that they continue to breed even though they can no longer go back to their natural habitat. I don’t like zoos but seeing the big birds alive and safe in this center make the world much better.

I truly love this place, visiting the eagles is Davao’s pride in terms of tourism. I still have plenty of time that afternoon to roam around the city so I decide to go to Jack’s ridge and Shrine of the Holy Infant Jesus of Prague in Matina. From Calinan to Matina, fare cost Php 35.00. Then you need to ride a tricycle to go way up to the spots. I went first to the church, stick my praying candle and took some photos. The view is spectacular showcasing entire Mt Apo and Samal Group of Islands. Catalina view deck fee is Php 12.00. Across the street is Jack Ridge, famous for its city landscape. Viewing the entire Davao. Fancy restaurants and bars are also located here. No entrance fee.

The sun is about to fall, wind is still warm and I feel sticky. I decide to go back to the city. Davao’s humidity is stronger than Metro Manila, I can feel my sweat all over my body. I think I lost a few pounds by walking around. I ride tricycle back to the highway and catch a jeepney back to my inn. What I really like when walking around this city is the street food which offers fruits like guava, papaya, mango, pineapple, pomelo, etc in cheap prices. I also love Kusina Dabaw’s siopao which one of the best buns I have tasted.

I went back to my inn, took a bath and prepare for my night out. I meet up with my Davao-based friends, went to Roxas to search for the most affordable Tuna Panga and street food in which easy to find. Tuna panga with unlimited rice for Php 80.00 is way cheap here. Taste the Durian Ice Cream and another set street food to find my dinner in peace. My friends describe Davao to be a good place to live in apart from Metro Manila. I am fascinated by their brevity to jet set from Luzon to Mindanao. But Davao’s climate is really not a good place for a person like me who has a never-ending headache when the temperature goes out of the scale.

I would visiting Davao again for the food it offer and the breath of fresh air within the city.

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.

Day 5: The Grand Tinuy-An Falls and Hinatuan Enchanted River

“Start the day with breathing life in and exhaling all the worries away”

– Fakir

My 8 days and 7 nights Solo Backpacking in Mindanao

Features: Tinuy-An Falls, Bislig City, Hinatuan, Enchanted River, Habal-habal Tour, Surigao del Sur

I woke up heaving with excitement for my 5th day here in Mindanao. Everything I do here makes me feel the utmost freedom I wanted in life. The day will be as amazing as the previous days. I continuously fall in love with this place. After having my breakfast, I called my guide to start my day in Tinuy-An Falls. I read from other blogs that you need to go there early in the morning to catch the rainbow so I decide to go there around 0600. Bislig air is refreshing as Siargao Island. It’s a quiet place and very peaceful.

My guide fetch me at 0615, we started the trip to Tinuy-An Falls. From the main road going to the falls will be a rough drive. It will be a 30 minutes bumpy ride. Road blocks, mud and stone path will welcome you. We arrived around 0700, I am the first tourist of the day. I guess I was too early. I paid the entrance fee for Php 20.00. You can explore the place, swim if you like and get all the pictures you want. My first impression, I was overwhelmed by the grand falls in front of me. Pictures don’t give justice to the beautiful fall in front me. The Tinuy-An falls is very high and the curtains of water gives refreshing treat to the guest.

So at this point of time, Pryde (my camera) decides to kill its manual mode. HAHAHA : ( It was busted for some reason so I decide to get my pictures using my ipad and action camera. Still hopes high and enough cameras to cover my trips, I proceed in exploring the falls area. The Manobo tribes are the land lords so they will your guide if you want to check out the upper curtains of the falls. My guide is as quiet as I am as we go further up. There is a man-made stairs that will help you climb. Kuya guide is very kind to help me when we reach the slippery area. The cold splashes from the falls give me the refreshing feeling.

I reached the upper part of the falls, then swim in the ice cold water. The view was as fascinating as you view it below. Getting into high places relieve my addiction to adrenaline. It seems like all the issues in my life wash away by any scenic landscape in front of me. The love for adventure will definitely continue for as long as I can climb and hike and travel and walk and love this life. Tinuy-An Falls is a beauty you cannot see from its photos. It speaks more glamour in real life than check it out from the photos. It’s too dreamy to capture. To pretty to catch. Too real to get. These are my feelings as I view the wonders of the area. Really cool! Returning back to the main road after the trip, you need to ride into the Tribal Habal-habal which is actually part of the ordinance set in Bislig since they are the landlords of the area.

I made new colleagues all the way from Siargao Island. Upon embarking my way to Enchanted River, Jel’s friend from the DIY is also in Bislig for the same tour. I was just too early and unable to check that she messaged me several times for us to cut the cost of the habal-habal. Sometimes being too early can missed cheap opportunities. So, we fetch Grace from her inn and proceed to Hinatuan. We manage to cut the cost from Php 1000.00 to Php 700.00 which is still a good price. The motorcycle ride to Hinatuan is not a joke; another butt numbing trip for 45 minutes on a endless highway starts again.

We arrived at Enchanted River around 1000, registration fee Php 50.00 and you can explore the entire area which currently manage by the local government. At first glance, I am not as fascinated towards the River. It’s way different from the pictures shown in the internet. The turquoise color is gone and the deep blue abyss is not there. A bit disappointed but our guide said it’s currently not good to look because its high tide. Even the water taste a little bit salty. Since its high tide, river water meets the sea which is the reason why it’s a bit salty. Going here made me sweaty so I take the opportunity to dip into the cold relaxing water.

My high school friend Nilo was here when he globetrot Philippines for his work. I saw several of his photos from here so this made me decide to include Enchanted River as part of my Mindanao backpacking trip. I am a good swimmer but never a good diving. Taking my underwater photos gave me a hard time. This is part of the disadvantage of backpacking alone. No one will take your damn pictures. Good thing someone invented a timer for cameras. Whoever you are, thank you.

We waited for the fish feeding program in Hinatuan which starts at 1200. Grace got a really good spot at the upper portion and I got one on the lower portion. The staff feed the fishes for the next 15 minutes with background music. After the gig, we decide to go back to Bislig for Grace to take her Tinuy-an Falls trip and me to ready my pack. It was a quick day tour for both Tinuy-An Falls and Hinatuan. I cleaned up back to the hotel and ready my bags to Davao City. I ate roasted chicken for lunch which cost me Php 120.00 with drinks and rice.

I waited for Grace and we hopped into Bachelor Bus bound to Davao City, fare cost Php 300.00 for ordinary bus. The February wind is like a lullaby as we begin our journey. The road trip started around 1700, as we view Banana Plantation and endless greens of Mindanao. This time of my life really change my perspective about travelling this beautiful country. Its broaden my mind and views as we passed by the town after town. There are several bus stops for break and dinner time. As the night time crossed the sky line, I fell asleep and when I woke up we were in Davao Ecoland Terminal. The entire transfer took us 7 hours and it’s worthy. We catch a tricycle to My Hotel to check in but they are fully booked. They refer us to Daylight Inn, we got our double bed fan room for Php 300.00. Same pricing to surrounding inns in Davao, our is near the famous Bankeruhan and other establishment.

Finally, I was able to set foot in the one of the safest place in the world. Tomorrow will be the time to explore Davao City. For now I need to take a rest and have the best sleep.

Touch Down PIRATES!!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.

Day 4: A Long Run Around in Mindanao

“A trip so long is a journey to patience”

– Fakir

My 8 days and 7 nights Solo Backpacking in Mindanao

Features: Sea and Land Transfer from Siargao Island to Mangagoy, Bislig Surigao del Sur, Travel time, Tinuy-an Falls, Enchanted River, Hinatuan, Bislig and finding a hostel

I am leaving Siargao Island with a little bit of a heavy heart. The life in this island is like a dream I never thought of. I share my life with people I met here and have the waves of desires in our lives. To travel the world and to live in peace. I will never forget the experience Siargao had given me. It was 0400 when I woke up, I barely sleep because I want to stay longer here but I need to move on to my next destination. I clean my locker in Paglaom Hostel, closed my pack and hopped to my habal-habal. The habal-habal rental cost Php 200.00, one of the nearby hostel guest don’t have a ride to we share. Indeed, I am a lucky bastard.

Within 15 minutes we arrived at Dapa Port, the port area is busy with hundreds of tourists and locals line up to get the ferry tickets. I bought a Mabuhay ticket for Php 260.00 and terminal fee for Php 15.00. Economy and business tickets are sold out. The fare is a bit expensive but when I hopped into it, I changed my mind. The Mabuhay class have air-condition, comfortable seat and airplane seat feel. I still wonder why I did hop to a small boat going to Siargao Island. The tricycle driver from Surigao City seems to drop me to a different port. No wonder, all passengers are mostly locals at that time.

I fell asleep as we sail out to the vast sea. The travel time is less than 2 hours since this is a huge vessel. I arrived in Surigao City really drowsy, my head is starting to ached and I need to find my way to the Terminal. I take a jeep to the terminal for Php7.00. I was about to take a bus to Butuan, then another bus/van going to Mangagoy. When I reach the terminal, I learned that vans bound to Davao City are available in Surigao City. I hopped into the crowded van, paid Php300.00 going to San Fran Integrated Terminal. The van route to Butuan City then bound to Surigar del Sur. The entire stop/go routine lasted for another 6 hours of my life before arriving to San Fran. I was tired and weary; I barely slept in the van because the view is just to awesome.

From San Fran, I need to take another ride to Mangagoy, Bislig for my Tinuy-An Falls and Enchanted River escapade for the next day. I decide to take Bachelor Bus to Mangagoy paying Php150.00 fare. Van transfer fare is cheaper for Php 80.00 – 100.00. Take the van instead if you want to have a cheaper rate. The travel time from San Fran to Bislig is another 2 – 3 hours butt numbing trip. I met local ladies who are kind enough to give me shelter for the night. I was tired when I got in Bislig, the drivers are hauling around me. I cannot decide because I am starving and headache is around the corner. The local ladies pulled me from the haggling drivers and decide to check me in their houses. I am too grateful for their offer but I decide to say no. I am a bit uncomfortable staying in to someone else’s house rather than taking an inn. They helped me get an air-conditioned room instead in Star Dormitel for Php 300.00 instead of paying Php 550.00 in which I am very thankful.

I was gasping for food when I reached my room. I am tired and really starving so I decide to complete my stocks again and went to Gaisano Mall to purchase some stuff. Bislig City is pretty quiet place to live, its warm and peaceful compare to nearby cities. After getting my food, I ate in my room and search for my habal-habal to fetch me for tomorrow’s adventure. I stayed outside and eat Balut to my heart’s content. I cannot find any available driver so I decide to contact Jel to get her contact instead which she provide immediately (Such an angel to have bumped into). I was able to contact the guide and settle for Php 1000.00 for the entire Tinuy-An and Hinatuan River tour. Everything is settled, I got the food and things I need for the next day activities. I conclude my 10 hours transfer from Siargao Island to Mangagoy, Bislig a huge success with a butt numbing ride to the far flung of Surigao.

Let’s do this PIRATES!!!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.

Day 1: The Journey to Mindanao for 8 Days and 7 Nights

“Plan ahead, pack your bags, secure your tickets and get broke. Live the life you think you deserve.”

– Fakir


My 8 days and 7 nights Solo Backpacking in Mindanao

Manila – Butuan City – Surigao City – Siargao Island – Bucas Grande – Surigao – Davao City – Samal Island – Davao del Norte – Davao – Manila itinerary.

Features: Manila to Butuan, Butuan to Surigao City, Golden Mile Pension Haus and Transfers

I always wanted to backpack a place I never set foot. In July 2015, I booked tickets from Manila to Butuan and Davao to Manila. I think its possible to set a thousand kilometers road trip in Butuan to Davao. Buses to Davao are all over Mindanao. I got 2 different tickets, no itinerary yet and I will deal with it at least 2-3 months before the trip. I purchase an all-in-fare ticket to Butuan for Php 625.00 and back to Manila for Php 500.00. Later I added check-in baggage for Php 224.00 each ticket to suffice my pack and equipment. Its still pretty cheap so I decide to pursue the dream and wait for 7 months.

Finally, its almost a month before the trip. I check out the timeline, initially wanted to go to Manila – Butuan – Davao – South Cotabato – Davao del Sur – Davao Del Norte – Davao City – Manila itinerary. But, I change my mind because transferring to Butuan to Davao to Lake Sebu will consume so much time. I decide to go to Siargao Island in which I found out that there are several places I could explore in Siargao for non-surfer like me. There is so much that it would cost so much. I decided to have Manila – Butuan City – Surigao City – Siargao Island – Surigao – Davao City – Samal Island – Davao del Norte – Davao – Manila itinerary.


February 25, it was my flight to Butuan City. I am coughing out loud and caring for a flu for the past days. I went on hiking 1 week ago, prior to that went back from my Bohol trip. I was exhausted and exasperating in excitement that led me to sickness. So I pack my bags, make sure that everything on my checklist are securely put on my pack. My flight was change from 0740 to 13:25 which actually ruin my itinerary. I was supposed to tour in Butuan but decide to scratch it on the list. I went to the NAIA Terminal 3 way too early. 3 hours before the flight I landed in the airport. I thought traffic is heavy because portion of EDSA is closed because its a public holiday.

I just waited and abuse the free internet in the airport, listen to songs until my flight was called for boarding. It was a smooth flight of 1 hour to Butuan City. As I view the mountain range of Agusan, I was mesmerized and its just the start but its already worth it. I got out of Bancasi Airport, van dispatchers and travel agencies are now offering their services. I was starving; I ate in the canteen outside the airport. I order Tinolang Tuna and rice with a drink for Php 80.00. Then hop to the van going to Surigao City for Php 200.00. The original plan is taking Bachelor Bus to Surigao City but the terminal is about 5-10 minutes away from the airport. You need to walk from the airport to the highway and catch a multicab to Butuan Integrated Terminal if you want to catch the bus. Fare is almost the same or the bus is more expensive than van transfer.


From Butuan Airport to Surigao City will take a cruel 5-6 hours travel time. The van is stopping to pick up passengers which prolong the entire trip. I slept several times, asking if we are near yet its still far. Good thing that the place is too damn beautiful where the mountain range is meeting the blue waters of the sea. I could not agree no more. It’s night time when I arrive at Surigao Integrated Terminal. Some tricycle drivers offer service from the terminal to the Centro (downtown) for Php 50.00 but I decide to take the multicab instead for Php8.00 to Vasquez Street where most inns are located. I did not booked for one so I walk in to Golden Mile Pension Hauz.

Unfortunately their fan room for Php300.00 is under construction. Then it started to rain hard so I need to take immediate shelter. I haggle for their rooms since I will be staying for a good 8 hours. From Php850.00, they gave me the air-conditioned room for Php550.00. I am exhausted and starving from the trip. I walk around, found barbeque restaurant Zouk. Order myself rice, grilled chicken wings and chicken innards with carbonated drinks for Php78.00. Dig in, pay and went back to the hotel to call it a night.

I woke up around 0400, drink coffee and some of my biscuits. I arrange my pack then left the hotel then catch the first trip to Siargao Island. I was again way too early because I am too eager to reach Siargao. I have lots of activities to do in the island. I want have fun after the road trip that doesn’t seem to end. I will right the entire Siargao Island travel on my next blog. There is more in this island that won’t fit in this entry.


Road trip PIRATES!!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.

Mt Ulap Overnight Camp Guide

“Just live even though it’s not extraordinary’

– Fakir

Features: Mt Ulap Experience, Budget, Itinerary and Overnight Review


Where is Mt Ulap?

The Benguet Province mountains and trail never fail to amaze our hiking group. The weather and picturesque scene make us go back from time to time. We plan our group climb a month ago and it was a huge success. Checking out blogs for overnight camping trip is hard. I want to share our experience climbing Mt Ulap. The mountain is located in between Ampucao and Sta Fe, Itogon Benguet which is 45 minutes – 1 hour away from Baguio City. Surrounded by pines trees that gives the wintry effect. Peak season is during the summer months. Hiking groups and travel agencies are all over the place throughout the year. Our climb was on September 16 – 18 2016 which is rainy season. Trail is wet and clearing is up to the weather.


How to go here:

Buses to Baguio City are very common in Cubao and Pasay Area. We catch our bus at Victory Liner Terminal in Cubao regular bus fare for Php 450.00 and Deluxe bus for Php 750.00. Traveling from Cubao to Baguio City takes around 5 – 6 hours with stop over in Tarlac and Pangasinan.

You can take your private vehicle from Manila to Ampucao or join travel agencies at your own convenience. I checked agencies and they offer Php 1400.00 – 1800.00 per pax. It’s an all in tour with Baguio City side trip and van transfer which good for 10 – 16 pax.

My group prefer a do-it-yourself itinerary so that we can maximize our hiking time and our own budget. We have complete hiking gear like tents, camping stoves, cook wares and other climb essentials.


Hike duration and Camping

Our climb is a bit treacherous due to the weather, light rain and fog compensate our pacing. It took us 6-7 hours before reaching the campsite. Traversing from Ampucao jump-off to Sta. Fe via Philex ridge. The trail is wet but in good condition. It’s not slippery and the view is majestic. The Pine forest is really spectacular. Going up and down within the ridge is difficult especially if you have full pack behind your back. My pack weigh around 15 – 20 kilos a little bit uncomfortable for a woman but physical training pays off. We have our rain gears like ponchos, good hiking shoes and dri-fit clothes. For rainy weather condition, technical clothes help a lot. Even though they are expensive, my shoes and clothes keeps me warm all throughout the climb.

The trail is consist of 5 segments. The ridge is commonly known as Philex Ridge but the locals want to correct it. They call it Ampucao – Sta Fe Ridge. The first segment is called Ambanao Paoay which means GREEN FIELD which is 1788 masl. Second is the infamous Gungal Rock at 1814 masl. Unfortunately due to the rain, we don’t have clearing for the spectacular view. Third will be the SUMMIT of Mt Ulap at 1846 masl, we skip the summit part and trek back the following day. From the camp site to the summit it takes around 15 – 30 minutes up. We had a clearing this time and the scene is just WOW. Upon descending, the fourth segment will be Pong-Ol Burial Caves. Last will be the Sta Fe Jump off. Traversing from Sta Fe is bit rigorous, if you have advance physical fitness then you can traverse from Sta. Fe to Ampucao. Registration is still in Ampucao Barangay Hall.


Our guide said that the trail is different during the summer months (April – June). The entire ridge is dry with hues of green and brown. Our terrain is foggy, wet, cold and hasty. Stranger Things effect scene. Eerie and dark. Regardless, the entire hike is fun, difficult and tiring which is part of your climb experience. The Benguet trails never fail to amaze me. Climbing in a cold temperature lessen the difficulty unlike hiking during warm days. Water consumption is lesser. Well, this is me. Some people might have high tolerance over dry and hot trails.

We reach the wet and muddy camp site. The saddle camp site is in chaos of puddle and rain water so we decide to move near the sari-sari store. There are no available flat surface for us because it was weekend and full of crazy campers like us. Our guide clean up our camping ground and we manage to set our shelters. There tables and chairs available in the camp so you can comfortably eat or cook your meals. This site will be much appreciated during dry hike. We had fun even though its wet and wild.


Difficulty LEVEL for me: 5/9

Budget as of Sept 2016

Cubao – Baguio City Bus Fare: Php 450.00
Victor Liner Baguio City Terminal to Central Mall Taxi: Php 51.00
Baguio City – Ampucao Jeepney Fare: Php 31.00
Guide Fee Overnight: Php 800.00 good for 8 – 10 pax (Php 400.00 Dayhike)
Camping Fee: Php 500.00 per group
Registration: Php 100.00 per pax
Porter: Php 500 for 20 kilos (add Php 50.00 per kilo)
Shower: Php 20.00 per pax
Sta Fe – Baguio City Jeepney Regular Fare: Php 50.00

Jeepney Rental from Sta Fe Jump-Off to Baguio City: Php 1000.00 good for 15-18pax (We rented PUJ going back to Baguio City because some of my hiking mates are in a hurry)
Baguio City – Cubao Bus Fare: Php 445.00



T-shirts: Php 200.00

Ref Magnets: Php 25.00 – 50.00

Key Chains: Php 10.00 – 200.00

Wood Trekking Pole: Php 30.00 – 200.00


Registration Expense: Php 2700 with porter
Camp Meals and Drinks: Php 1200
Transpo All in: 8700


Budget per pax: 1600 – 1800

Our budget includes breakfast at Good Taste in Central Mall which is open 24/7. We complete our supplies in Baguio City Public Market. We bought ingredients for our Tinolang Manok and buttered Broccoli/Mushroom for dinner. Bought eggs, bread, coffee, spread, rice, condiments, butane gas and etc. We also bought group supplies like garbage bags, tissue, drinks and group water. The entire budget cut for Php 1200.00 which is splurge, you can cut it to Php 800.00 – 1000.00 depending on your needs.

We hire a porter because some of us are newbies in terms of camping. Porter one way cost Php 500.00, it will be your choice if you want someone to bring your packs. There are souvenir shops along the way selling shirts, ref magnets and key chains. A store/sari-sari is available in the campsite. They sell coffee, instant noodles and cold drinks. Transferring around Baguio City, we hired cab to transfer us from the Bus Terminal to Central mall for Php 51.00 which is good for 4-5 pax. We all know that taxi drivers in Baguio City are known for being nice and they give exact change. This is also included on our group budget.


Sample Overnight Itinerary

Day 0

2200 Call Time Victory Liner Cubao
2300 ETD Manila

Day 1

0500 ETA Baguio City (Victory Liner Terminal
0515 Center Mall
0530 Breakfast at Good Taste
0630 Secure supplies in Baguio City Market
0800 ETD Central Mall
0900 ETA Ampucao Barangay Hall
0915 Register (Secure Guide and Porter)
0930 Hiking Preparation
1030 Start Trek
1330 ETA Ambanao Paoay
1530 ETA Gungal Rock
1730 ETA Camp Site
1800 Prepare Dinner
1900 Socials
2200 Lights Out

(Take 5 – 10 for 10-15 times. Hehe!)

Day 2

0600 Wake up time
0700 Prepare breakfast
0800 Trek to summit
0830 Summit
0930 Trek back to Summit
1000 Breakfast
1030 Break camp
1130 Start descend
1330 ETA Pong-Ol Burial Caves
1400 ETA Sari – sari Stores, Rest
1500 ETA Sta Fe jump – off
1530 Wash up
1630 ETD Sta Fe
1730 ETA Victory Liner Terminal
1800 ETD Baguio City
1200 ETA Manila


You can tour around the city parks or have drinks in bars along Session Road. You can adjust your itinerary accordingly. Our itinerary is for chill and fun climb.

Credits to Katherine Joyce Villados iPhone LOL! And Mama Sarah Monterey shots.

Thank you Mapagmahal Mountaineers (Sir Al, Nolan and Bene), Yapak Mountaineers (Sarah Monterey) and Balanghai G (Gel-gel!)! Till next G! SOYA!

High five Pirates!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go

Things to do in Surigao Del Norte

“You live as if impossible don’t exist”


Features: Siagao Island, Bucas Grande and when in Surigao del Norte.

These are the things that fascinate me as I visit the Southern part of the Philippines. Paradise for both who love adventure and serene beauty of nature. Siargao Island and Bucas Grande offers it all. For surfer and non surfer, this place will satisfy your cravings to nature.

  1. Be captivated by General Luna’s coastline.


2. Man-made infinity pool in the heart of Siargao Island.


3. As part of the Siargao Island hopping. Daku means big. Daku Island will surely take your breath away.


4. The infamous Cloud 9 of General Luna.


5. Paglaom Hostel. Happy vibe and owners. Php 300.00 / night. Cheap find to meet rare people.


6. Cliff diving. Just jump!

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7. The view is rare. I find utmost peace. This is life we all deserve.


8. White sand and sun. Naked Island will burn both your skin and heart. So pretty.


9. Tojoman Lagoon in Bucas Grande. See the colorful stingless jellyfish!


10. Ride with the local paddler going to the Tojoman Lagoon.


11. Watch locals as they catch fish using spears and traps.


12. The Snoring Cave gives you delight in your eyes as the aquamarine water beams underwater.


13. Paghungawan Marsh is home of the Philippine Crocodile.


14. YUP! Siargao Island. Surfing Capital of the Philippines.


14 marvelous things you can do in Surigao del Norte!

Ay! Ay! Pirates!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.

 Bohol – Cebu Travel and Tours Itinerary for 4 Days and 3 Nights

Bohol Tour for 3 Days and 2 Nights

Cebu Day Tour, Accidental Backpacking Escapade

Day 1

0500 Call Time for our 0745 Flight Manila – Tagbilaran Bohol

0515 ETD Home in Marikina City

0600 ETA NAIA Terminal 4

0630 Waiting for Boarding (Already Web Check-in the day before the actual flight to avoid long lines)

0745 ETD NAIA Terminal 4 (No Delay because 1st flight to Tagbilaran)

0900 ETA Tagbilaran Airport

0915 Pre-hired Car and Driver Service for Bohol Countryside Tour

0945 Blood Compact

1000 Baclayon Church

1030 Python

1100 Buffet Lunch At Loboc River Cruise

1230 Chocolate Hills

1315 Bilar Man made Forest

1345 Butterfly Garden

1415 Tarsier Conservation Area

1445 Bamboo Hanging Bridge

1515 Souvenir Shop

1545 ETD Panglao Island

1645 ETA Flushing Meadow Resort and Playground in Panglao Island

1730 Wash up / Free Time / Swimming in the beach and Infinity Pool

1900 Dinner

2200 Lights Out



Day 2

0430 Call Time

0500 Breakfast

0530 Prepare for Dolphin Watching and Island Hopping

0600 ETD Resort via Hired Boat

0645 ETA Dolphin Watching Site

0800 ETD Start Island Hopping

0930 ETA Balicasag Island

1000 Snorkelling with paddle boat / Guide / Snorkel Gears 100% Must Try (Turtle Watching and Scuba Diving are also available)

1200 ETD Balicasag Island

1300 ETA Virgin Island

1315 Walk to the Sandbar if its Low Tide

1345 ETD Virgin Island

1415 ETA Flushing Meadow

1430 ETD BK Mall Tagbilaran City

1500 ETA Tagbilaran

1515 Lunch at STK

1600 Purchase Dry Goods, Peanut Kisses and other Souvenir Items

1700 ETD Tagbilaran via Hired Car

1730 ETA Resort

1800 Free Time

2100 Dinner at Hotel Restaurant

2300 Lights Out



Day 3

0600 Breakfast

0700 Swimming, Kayaking, Paddle Boating

1000 Explore Panglao Beach

1100 Wash up and Pack things

1200 Check Out at Resort Hotel

1230 Lunch at The Bee Farm Panglao

1400 ETD Bee Farm

1430 ETA Tagbilaran Airport

1500 Waiting for boarding

1545 ETD Tagbilaran Airport

1700 ETA NAIA Terminal 4

But WAIT THERE’S MORE. Flight got cancelled due to troubled aircraft on the runway. All flights will be re-booked 2 days from the orginal flight schedule which is too long for us.

1500 Waiting for boarding

1600 Flight got cancelled

1730 Request Refund

1830 ETD Tagbilaran Airport

1900 ETA Tagbilaran Port: Purchase Ticket to Cebu Port via Lite Ferry (Slow Boat)

1930 Booked flight Mactan Airport to NAIA Terminal 3: Next Day Flight

2100 Dinner at Marina Cafe

2200 Waiting for Ferry Boarding

2230 ETD Tagbilaran Port

0330 ETA Port of Cebu


Day 4

0600 ETD Port of Cebu

0615 ETA Larsian for Breakfast

0730 Cebu Day Tour

0800 Hired Car and Driver for Cebu Day Tour

0830 Taoist Temple

0930 Magellan’s Cross

0945 Sto Nino Parish Church

1015 Fort San Pedro

1100 Heritage of Cebu / Yap Ancestral House

1115 Museo Carcel

1200 Taboan for Dry Goods

1300 Lunch at CnT Lechon

1430 SM Seaside: Coffee at Room for Dessert

1530 ETD SM Seaside

1630 ETA Mactan International Airport

1700 Waiting for boarding

1730 ETD Mactan Intl Airport (Flight Delayed for 2 hours)

1900 ETD Mactan Intl Airport 

2000 ETA NAIA Terminal 3


2230 HOME after Manila traffic!!


See you later PIRATES!!

Source: Personal Photos Jerleen Custodio Copyright

Manlalayag is Seafarer in Filipino. I want to be a pirate who travels to Collect Memories and Steal Happiness from the places I want to go.