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.

SIQUIJOR ISLAND

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)

TIPS:

* 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.

DUMAGUETE CITY

 

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.

Budget:

> 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.

APO ISLAND

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.

TIPS:

* 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.

Budget:

> 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.

MANJUYOD ISLAND

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.

Budget

> 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

Tips:

* 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.

SUMMING UP DUMAGUETE

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.

Budget

> 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 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 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.

Mt Ulap Overnight Camp Guide




“Just live even though it’s not extraordinary’

– Fakir

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

pine-tree-forest

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.

back-packer

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.

the-cabin

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.

ampucao-jump-off

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.

descending-of-the-sons-of-mt-cloud

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

the-view-at-the-summit

Souvenirs

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

OUR GROUP BUDGET FOR 8 PAX

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

3-in-1-plus-mt-ulap

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.

sta-fe-bridge

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

titas-of-ulap

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

Mt Daguldul

We're still CHEERFUL. Perks of being a CRAZY ADVENTURE SEEKER!

We’re still CHEERFUL. Perks of being a CRAZY ADVENTURE SEEKER!

Sample Itinerary:

Day 1

0600 ETD Lipa via Bus (You can take the Cubao or Buendia Bus whichever is near from your house. We took Araneta Center Terminal)

0830 At Lipa, rent a jeepney to Barangay Hugom (Lipa to Barangay Hugom is a 2 hour ride)

Option 2: For Small Group,Solo or Dual Hikers

From Bus Drop Off in Front of Jolibee, ride a jeepnet to SM Lipa then take Jeep to San Juan. From San Juan take a tricycle to Barangay Hugom (It will be a journey)

1130 ETA Brgy. Hugom Outpost. Register and arrange for guide.

1300 Start Trek – Pavement road from Barangay Outpost or ride a jeepney or tricycle

1530 ETA Mang Lizardo’s place

1730 ETA Niyugan Campsite, Set Camp (We set our camp around 1900 due to heavy rain, slow-mo effect)

1900 Dinner / Socials (Nope, we did not eat on time!)

Day 2

0600 Wake up call (Chilly morning)

0620 Start Trek going to summit

0640 ETA summit

0800 ETD from summit

0830 Breakfast (We did ot eat)

0930 Break Camp

1000 Start Descent

1100 Back at Mang Lizardo’s place (We ate)

1200 Resume descent

1400 ETA Laiya Beach. (Rented a cottage for Php 500.00 with a long table: No Entrace once you rented the cottage)

1700 ETA SM Lipa. Took the Bus to Manila

1900 ETA Manila

Things to Bring

•A good pair of trekking shoes or rubber shoes

•Sun and Rain Protection (Sun Block, RAIN COAT / PONCHO, shades, cap etc..)

•Water or re hydration fluids(prescribed is 3L)

•Extra clothes and clothes for swimming

•Slippers

•Toiletries

•Personal Medications

•Packed lunch

•Snacks (Trail Food)

•Headlamp/ Flashlight

•Extra plastic

•Camera

•Mess Kit

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.

Reminiscing Puerto Princesa: The Palawan Adventure

crocs farm groupie
The wintry air of the Ber months is killing my forever summer attitude. All I want to do is to stay indoors, watch all dvds I have at home and eat while bumming out. It was November when my Gall Bladder was removed due to stone. Home bound for a month, nothing to do but to sit and wait for the wound to heal on my abdomen. After that I went back to my day work, resume my life in the city and got an invitation to explore the wonders of Palawan.
selfie with cros
Palawan is one of the province I want to visit to the beach, biodiversity, world famous under ground river and the exotic food. I got a discounted plane ticket from a friend, waited and I was bound to fall in love to the city which is so prime and sophisticated. Our flight from Manila to Puerto Princesa took about 45 minutes.
love in bakers hil
Good weather welcomes us in the city, waited for 10 minutes for the van who transfer us to our inn (Mariane Inn). Since I was an extra head for a group of 3, I only pay for the extra bed for Php 400.00 / $9.00 per night. There are many inns and hotels available in the city.
balinsasayaw sign
balin menu
We started the tour by exploring the cities finest. We lunch out in Balinsasayaw Restaurant, grilled chicken with unlimited rice for Php 99.00 / $2.00 per order. We order the infamous and pricey Bird’s Nest Soup which is actually a plain soup for me which cost Php 400.00 – 500.00 / $9.00 – 11.00 per bowl. After having the heavy meal I needed for the day.
birds nest soup
We rent a tricycle that will tour us in city. For a group of 4, we rent it for a whole day activity Php 800.00 / $18.00. Head out to Crocodile Farm, I was amazed that enormous reptiles are existing. The wonders of nature, the biggest crocs I’ve seen can eat 10-15 children. There were simply gigantic and were still. There are different types of rooms and areas for all kinds of Philippine Crocodile.
croc farm sign
crocs pictorial
crocs on water
The nursery, the adults, the picture taking area and souvenir booth you can explore. Entrance fee cost Php 50.00 / $1.50 which is good enough because the farm is very well maintain and the animals seems to be on a very good condition.
croc mouth selfie
crocs
After checking out of the farm, we head out to the Baker’s Hill. It was a free entrance park where you can view the greenish field of the city. It was a city minus the skyscrapers. I ordered their famous hopia as my pasalubong to my family and friends.
bakers hill sign'
Bakers hill view
chin in bakers hill
They have delivery as well so you can order then make them deliver it to your hotel before going back home. The hopia were killers, too tasty and too delicious I bought 15 boxes on my way back.
mitras ranch with horse
mitras ranch
We dropped by Mitra’s Ranch, again FREE entrance. It is like teleporting to Picnic Grove in an instance, you can also try their horse back riding and picture taking is a must. After the ranch gig, we went to the souvenir shops to get those mandatory I love Palawan shirts and other stuff you can buy.
mitras ranch nigh view
Price wise it was too much to spend it in Mercado and Island Souvernir but cheaper shirts are actually available in San Miguel. I bought pearls and my ref magnets in there. 50% cheaper in Mercado! You need to buy here!
kinabuch signage
crocs sisig
Buying souvenir on your first day will actually omit the rush feeling if you are going to do it on your last day. To maximize the time think the things you want to bring after experience you have in Palawan. It was an exhausting ay trip, I found myself nestled in Kinabuch’s to have dinner. The food offering is mixed culture from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao dishes. To the exotic found in the corner of this island.
kinabuch dinner
sunugba
tamilok
We ordered Crocodile Sisig which made the impression. Then, I tried fresh Tamilok (mangrove worms) in spiced vinegar. Sinugba with fish paste and steamed eggplants which captures my mouth. The mouthwatering dishes killed the night very happily. Day 1 in Palawan is another UNLOCKED ACHIEVEMENT for the Manlalayag in me!
baby crocs
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.

Daranak Falls

Diving the clear blue water using the edge of humongous rock formation is an amusement for me. I dream of going to place where I can jump the highest cliff I will ever find. On a lovely day, touring a group of office mates in a magical place near our city. We went to Daranak Falls in Tanay, Rizal Philippines. This place is not a secret but few people in the Metro doesn’t know it exist.

d14One time, I got all the stress at work and want to scream my lungs out because of the toxic my job brings. I search the nearest place where I can swim to pour down this massive stress. I read a blog about a nature park which is only 1 hour drive from my place. Right there and there, I went in Tanay to search for the place. Before I went to the town, I read articles and blogs about the park. From the pictures the enthusiast uploaded, the place seems so magical.

Together with a friend, we explore the town and find our way to Daranak Falls. At first, I was astounded on what I am seeing because the place is very beautiful. The pictures I saw beats the real thing. I was fascinated about the park, it is very clean, cheap entrance and a lake where you can swim.

PLUS! It has a small cliff where you can dive anytime you want. The water from the falls magnificently pouring down endlessly. The water is blue and cold. A very refreshing afternoon for us to take deep swim and enjoy the nature.

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I jump several times off the cliff, in different ways and style. The thrill of the water splashing on your face and the cold water hitting your body will definitely cool your stress system down. I always go back to this place, I am in love with its simplicity.

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It was an amazing experience for and for the rest of my friends who I invited here. They were shock to know that there is a place where we can take a nature trip and give ourselves time to breath from the polluted Metro.

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How to get there:

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You can go to Tanay Rizal via Jeepney van.

PUJ
From Crossing, Shaw Boulevard Mandaluyong
Terminal next to Worldwide Corporate Center across Starmall. There is Shaw to Tanay Jeepney
Fare: Php 53.00 as of 21/12/2014

PUV
Starmall Terminal for PUV. Starmall – Tanay
Fare:  Php 60.00 as of 21/12/2014

Estimated Travel Time: 90 minutes

From Tanay to Daranak Falls

Take a tricycle from Tanay Terminal to Daranak Falls
Solo: Php 150.00 to Php 200.00
Fare: Php 30.00 to Php 50.00 minimum of 4 pax

Daranak Falls entrance fee is Php 50.00.

Cottage Rental: Php200.00 -300.00 for the entire day

You can rent floaters inside for Php30.00-50.00 for entire stay if its off-peak and per hour for peak season. Peak season is from March to June where people around the Metro seek the comfort of cold mountain water spring. The park is jam-packed by families. If you are solo traveler, you can ask the life guards to attend your things if they have fewer people. Just make sure to try the cliff dive. It was so worth it.

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Traveler Rate C!!

How to Plan Your Travel
PLAN
In traveling there lots of considerations. What type of travel? How many are joining? Family trip? Couple escapade? Solo travel? That will depend, to make your travel enjoyable and less hassle you need to plan.
jei6
You need to plan ahead if you want to somewhere you can enjoy and check out for new things. You need to search for the place best spots and plan out you itinerary. There are millions of people posting information about a known destination. Get the best out of the place, afterwards, estimate on how much will be the cost. In order to assume the expense, you need to finalize the period your staying in the place and the items below:
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1. Accommodation – Once you decided on how many days you will stay, check for your hotels, inns, pension house or tent city that will be appropriate on your budget.
2. Transportation – find ways on how to get there depending on the period of your stay. If backpacking with limited time it will be best to put more on your boarding budget. Getting there quickly means to your explore more. On a tight budget but have longer plan on staying, check out for cheap alternative route and ways of commuting. Traveling by via air is more expensive but traveling via land will feed your eyes more on your way. Time will determine your means of transportation.
3. Food – it is important to get full while wandering because traveling will be energy consuming activity. Once you on tour, check out for local restaurants or establishment that caters the area’s best culinary. If traveling alone, always check if you can consume all of your order. If traveling in group, best thing to do is chip in, order platters or food you can share so that the payment will be divided depending on your number.
4. Joiner – if traveling alone nor on a tight budget. Search for travel agencies who offers cheap packages. Usually, tour packages are cheaper because of the minimum number of participant. When a group need to complete their number, you can join into their tour and will only pay less other than going alone. You can booked your tour or join on a group of tourist to lessen the worry of being lost on your destination. The touring agency will usually provide guides and information the places included on your itinerary.
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Before setting out on the fields, always be careful and know your limits when it comes to touring activities. Make sure that someone knows where you are when you leave. Secure your things and be happy on you trip.

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Created by Eugene Villar.