Carnaza Island with #TropangLaagan

Carnaza Island is located in Daanbantayan. It became known this past few months and many tourists are coming in the island.

How to get there

🚌 Take a bus or van going to Maya/Bagay from Cebu North Bus Terminal to Tapilon Port or near the area. The van fare is Php 200 per person. (I am not sure though how much is the bus fare.) The travel time is 3-4 hours.

⛵️From Tapilon Port, take a boat to Carnaza Island. I am not sure also with the boat schedule. If I am not wrong, the first trip is at 7AM. The fare is Php 200 per person and the travel time is 2 hours.

🛵Usually the boat will directly go to Carnaza Eco Park. However if it will not go there, you can ride a habal-habal from wherever it will dock. The fare is Php 20.

There are many places in the island that offer a place to stay. But, most of the tourists will go directly to Carnaza Eco Park and will stay there.

CARNAZA ECO PARK Once you get there, you will be told to go directly the office for the registration. You also need to pay Php 200 per person as an entrance fee. If you will be staying there, you also need to pay Php 50 per tent (if you will use your tent), Php 200 per wood tent, and there are rooms also for rent.

The island’s electricity is only available from 6PM to 6AM. There is a common charging station for guests which those who stay in the tents can use. The rooms have their own power outlet.

Once we arrived in the eco park, we settled and had lunch. While the boys were swimming, we were just chillin.

After that, we had our day tour. For the tour, you can choose to tour the island either by boat or by motorcycle. The fee is Php 150 per person.

FIRST STOP (I am not sure if Ka Gorio is the name)

But, we did not stay there because there were many tourists.

SKULL COVE Our next stop is the Skull Cove. But before you can see its beauty, you need to trek.

And this is Skull Cove 💀

Psalms Restaurant Before heading to our next and last destination and while waiting for the sunset, we went to Psalms Restaurant for fresh buko juice and mango shake coz it was really hot that afternoon. 😀

Kailina After a couple of minutes resting while drinking buko juice & mango shake and chatting, we decided to go to our last stop, Kailina. It is a private beach with an entrance fee of Php 20 per person.

Before we can enjoy the beach, we need to climb up for a couple of steps.

Yet, all the walking was worth it. Because what awaited us there was completely wonderful. A long stretch of white sand beach, a crystal clear water and a quiet, relaxing place. Guests can also bring their own tent and stay there overnight. But for us, we were just there to enjoy the beach, take pictures and witness the golden hour.

We then headed back to the ecopark. Our motorcycle drivers were already waiting at the entrance to Kailina.

And the perfect way to end the night?

Playing power card game while drinking Empe (sila lang, wa koy apil 😂), chatting, laughing and putting lipstick on our faces (punishment for the power card game).

Me & my friends have simple joy. We don’t need fancy & luxurious stuff to have fun, which I really love. And making fun of each other is one of them. Even if we look like a clown. 😜😊

Anyway, a short stay in Carnaza Island was made possible through the efforts of Toj (for more info, check his blog at Byahe ni Toj). Thanks toj! 😍

Indeed, it was another fun and memorable weekend getaway for the group. Meeting new friends, discovering new places and making new memories.

IN THE FIRST PLACE, I have the best companion which made the weekend amazing. 😀

I know, you wanna go to Carnaza Island too. Why not check some tips below.

1. You have the option to take the bus or van to Tapilon Port. Just make sure that you inform the driver or conductor where you’re heading.

2. The earlier you travel, the better. Since the boat trips are limited, make sure you arrive at the port early. You can ask the locals how you can cross to the island as they can help you too.

3. If you’re staying overnight at the ecopark, reserve ahead your room or tent. Otherwise, you can also bring your own tent.

4. Buy water and drinks from Tapilon since the supply in the ecopark is limited.

5. You can buy foods in the ecopark (canned goods, noodles, bbq, rice) or order from Psalms Restaurant.

6. You can tour the island either by motorcycle or by boat. The rate is the same (Php 150 per person). Just approach the drivers at the parking near the ecopark.

7. The electricity is from 6PM to 6AM only.

8. Bring and apply sunblock for protection especially it can be totally hot nowadays.

9. No ATM in the island (as far as I know) so bring extra cash.

10. Follow the rule. Leave nothing but footprints. Take nothing but pictures. Kill nothing but time. Let us all help protect the environment.

BY THE WAY, MOBILE SIGNAL IN THE ISLAND IS WEAK AND NOT RELIABLE SO MAKE SURE THAT YOU INFORM YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS ESPECIALLY YOUR GIRLFRIEND/BOYFRIEND ABOUT IT. (kay makaguba jud siyag relasyon haha!)

YOU WILL REALLY DISCONNECT FROM THE WORLD OF SOCIAL MEDIA AND TEXT MESSAGING. INSTEAD, YOU WILL CONNECT WITH THE PEOPLE YOU ARE TRAVELING WITH, FELLOW TOURISTS, LOCALS AND NATURE. IT IS A PERFECT TIME TO RELAX. 😉

Meet Carnaza Island and its friendly people now. 😉🙈👣

25 hours in Sagada

I always want to visit Sagada especially when I heard and read stories from friends, family and bloggers/travelers. But, getting there takes more time and patience. Plus, I am not sure if it is safe to travel because of the zigzag roads.

But the amazing stories pushed me more to fulfill this plan. And so, when I have a travel in Manila, I took the opportunity to visit Sagada on the weekend before my schedule. When my cousin knew about it, she also wanted to go. And so, together with my cousin, aunt and uncle, we all went to Sagada on a Friday night.

HOW TO GET THERE

There are many ways you can get to Sagada.

Their terminal is at HM Transport Terminal, Monte De Piedad St., corner Maryland St., Cubao, Quezon City.  Below are the schedules and fares based on their website.

     From Quezon City to Sagada
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From Sagada to Quezon Citycoda lines2.JPG

   

It is best to book online ahead of your trip so that you can secure a seat. There are bus stops along the way.

  • Bus to Baguio City then Bus to Sagada

Another way is to take a bus from Manila to Baguio then take another bus to Sagada. One of the bus lines that will go to Baguio is the Victory Liner which you can also book a ticket online. Travel time is 5-6 hours to Baguio and another 5-6 hours to Sagada.

There is an hourly trip from either Cubao, Pasay or Sampaloc to Baguio City.

From Baguio City, you can take a bus to Sagada either by GL or Lizardo Bus.

    From Baguio City to Manila

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  • Bus to Banaue then Bus to Sagada
  • Bus to Bontoc then Jeep to Sagada

BELOW ARE THE SCHEDULES FROM SAGADA

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You may check Pinay Solo Backpacker‘s Sagada Blog for the detailed information on how to get to Sagada.

HOW TO GET AROUND

  • By foot

Most of the tourist spots, restaurants, souvenir shops and hotels/inns in Sagada can be reached by walking. It is better to do it this way to enjoy the view. Also, it will not be that tiring because of the cold air.

  • By jeepney

You can also take a jeepney to go from one place to another. Just make sure to ask if it will pass your destination.

  • By renting a vehicle

Their Information Center can help you rent a vehicle to tour you around or even take you to neighboring towns.

WHAT TO DO IN SAGADA

When you visit Sagada, you will notice that their tours are being regulated by the Local Government Unit. Once you arrived, you need to pay a one-time Environmental Fee of Php 40 at the Information Center where you will also register your names, contact details and the place you will be staying. Always bring the receipt of the Environmental Fee as this will be needed during your tour. They will also provide you a guide and information about Sagada.

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If you want to have a tour, make sure to coordinate and book it with the in-charge in the Information Center. They regulated it that all tours must have a tour guide.

Below are the different tours that you can try in Sagada.

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OUR EXPERIENCE

Once we arrived in Sagada, we directly went to the Information Center, paid the registration fee and registered. Then we scheduled a tour for the day. We chose the Adventure Trail for the Echo Valley Walking Tour and Kiltepan Sunrise the next day.

We checked in first at Masferre Inn and Restaurant

There are many inns and hotels in Sagada that you can choose from. You may check it with Agoda, Booking.com and other hotel apps.

After we got settled and changed, we then headed back to the Information Center where we met our tour guide.

And the Adventure Trail began…

Church of St. Mary the Virgin

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Echo Valley

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TREKKING

UNDERGROUND RIVER

FOREST & CAVE

FIELD

WATERFALLS (BOKONG NATURAL SWIMMING POOL)

After the 3-hour Adventure Trail, we were so hungry and dying to have our lunch. Our guide called the driver and pick us up after walking for who knows how many steps up from Bokong Falls.

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We then went to GAIA CAFE AND CRAFTS SAGADA for lunch. They offer purely vegetarian foods, no additional seasonings, and that Sagada beer.

It was raining when we got there. By the way, this is where Mace & Anthony in That Thing Called Tadhana had their breakfast.

The place is so beautiful. It is an overlooking of the hills and trees. Everything is green, making it so relaxing.

After that, the driver picked us and sent us back to the hotel. We then rested and eventually, had a nap. We will supposedly go to Lake Danum for the Sunset but it was raining the whole afternoon.

And so, we went out later that night to buy for some pasalubong and souvenir. There are many souvenir shops in the area. If you are staying in Masferre, they have their own souvenir and pasalubong store. Also, there are shops across the inn.

Once done with all the shopping, we headed to LOG CABIN CAFE SAGADA to have our dinner. We tried their buffet dinner for Php 500 each. You need to pay for a reservation fee of Php 200 each. Dinner starts at 7PM. Below is the menu for the night.

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The foods are delicious and healthy especially the chicken and chocolate mousse. The chef is a foreigner. I am not sure if his French.

Then, we called it a day. Slept early because we need to wake up early for the sunrise.

Day 2

The guide/driver called me around 3AM asking if we were ready. And since we were not yet, he said that he will go back. At around 4AM, we went to the Information Center (which was closed that time and so we stayed outside with 13 or 14 degrees Celsius) and waited for the driver. He arrived almost 5AM then we directly headed to Kiltepan Peak.

When we arrived, many tourists were already there taking pictures, drinking coffee, chatting, etc. We then went to look for a place perfect to capture Mr. Sun. Luckily, we did find one.

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EXPECTATION: YOU ARE ALONE WITH THIS VIEW.

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REALITY: MANY TOURISTS WERE CAPTURING THE SAME THING TOO.

The estimated sunrise that day was at 5:40AM. Mr. Sun showed at 5:45AM. Everything was magical. I barely witnessed sunrise since I am not a morning person. That’s why I was very amazed. It’s like the mountains were giving birth to something and the sun is the baby.

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I have a time-lapse video of the sunrise but unfortunately, I cannot post it here yet because of some WordPress plan thing. I am just going to share it in my FB page.

Then, we went back to the inn and had our breakfast.

We packed our stuff and went to the bus station for Baguio City. If you checked the schedule above, first trip is at 5AM, second trip is at 7AM then hourly until 10AM. The afternoon trips are at 1PM and 5PM. The travel time is 5-6 hours and the fare is Php 220.

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This is the line for the 9AM bus trip.

That sums up our 25-hour tour (plus 24 hours travel time) in Sagada. It was short but still the looong trip is worth it. With all the fresh & cold air, beautiful environment, the trees, the hanging coffins, the river, the cave, the fields, the clouds, the sunrise, the people, the temperature, the foods and being away from the hustle & bustle of the city. It is indeed a good breath-taker and refresh before starting another busy week.

If you asked me why this is where the broken hearts go in That Thing Called Tadhana? I will copy my answer in my FB page when a friend asked me. Just need to translate it to English! Hahaha!

Didto muadto ang broken hearts kay bugnaw ang lugar (pareha kabugnaw sa love life niya), nindot isyagit (isyagit ang loneliness ug pain), mingaw (mas mingaw pa sa iyang life nga wala na siya). Pero didto niya makita ang kanindot sa world (ma remind siya na naa pay mas nindot kaysa gugmang nahumana ug naa pay daghang nindot diring kalibutana), healthy foods (which is kailangan niya para healthy siya) ug fresh air (pang refresh sa iyang life na nahimong toxic tungod sa iyaang ex). LOL! HAHAHA. 😂😜😁

TRANSLATION (please bear with me! HAHAHA):

The broken hearts will go to Sagada because the place is cold (as cold as one’s love life), good place to shout (shout all the loneliness and pain), quiet (much quieter than one’s life when the ex is gone). BUT! In Sagada, one will find how beautiful the world is (s/he will be reminded that there is more beautiful than a love that has ended and there are more beautiful things in this world), healthy foods (which one needs to be healthy) and fresh air (to refresh one’s life that became toxic because of her/his ex). LOL! HAHAHA. 😂😜😁
Well… there are more beautiful things in Sagada that one should visit. Not just because you are lonely or brokenhearted. But be in Sagada for the nature, for the wonders, for the foods, for the people and for the experience that you can write in your book of life. In fact, there are many foreigners in Sagada (more than we would expect).

If you are planning to visit Sagada, here are some tips.

  1. Travel time is too long. Make sure that you are okay with the long trip. Mostly, it takes 12-13 hours to get there by bus. I am not sure if there is another way though than land travel.
  2. Book ahead your seats in the bus because bus going directly to Sagada is not hourly and the trips & seats are limited. You can book online though.
  3. Bring foods during the trip. It might be difficult for you to buy somewhere when you get hungry during the trip. Remember, it is night time and stores might be closed already. However, there will be bus stops but usually at dawn for the driver to have some coffee break.
  4. There are many inns and hotels you can choose from in Sagada. You may book it in advance. Best to choose those near the Information Center where every tour will start, there are many restaurants & shops around.
  5. DO NOT FORGET to drop by the Information Center once you arrived in Sagada. Pay and register.
  6. There tours are regulated and required tour guide so book one if you want.
  7. Bring water during the tour. You will definitely be thirsty  and you might not be able to pass a store. Bring also a biscuit with you in case it will take longer.
  8. FOLLOW THE RULE. Leave nothing but footprints. Take nothing but photos. Kill nothing but time. So never leave your garbage anywhere. Never take the stones or leaves or fruits. And definitely, never kill the animals that you will find there. It is there home so pay some respect.
  9. There is an ATM in the Information Center if you need to withdraw.  But it is only one machine (I am not sure if it is DBP or PNB).
  10. If you will be going to Baguio after, be early at the bus station especially during weekend where more people are going there. Remember that the trips are limited. Otherwise, you have to stay an extra night.

And one more thing, enjoy your stay in Sagada. Capture as much as you want. Cherish every moment. And relax too. Leave the stresses in the city. Just spend your time with nature. It is totally worth it and fun. 😉

How to move on from an almost 9-year relationship?

Yes! The title is right. It was almost 9 years (8 years & 7 months to be exact). Yes, it was that long. And some would say, “sayang”. But things happened for a reason. It might take a longer time for you to know that you’re not for each other but the important thing is you don’t end up to someone that is not for you. Well, God has His own way to make things right and do the right things. Way better than what we can think and what we planned for.

Anyway, what happened has happened and there are things that we just need to accept, let go and move on. Stop the blame because each of you has its own flaw.

I am hesitant to write it here but I’ve got a lot of question about it since day 1. Like day after we broke up. So, I’m gonna share it as it might help others.

So, how did I move on?

Since day 1 until today which is a year and a month later, if we talked about exes, I usually got that question if I already moved on and how did I move on.

I tell you! Moving on is not an easy process. It is not something you can just sleep the night away and things will be okay & normal the next day. It is waaaaay harder, complicated and a looooong process. The process for each person is different from the other. As much as the pain and what had happened are unique from each other.

But how?

First step is always acceptance. If you read my previous blogpost and Facebook status, I always mentioned about acceptance. You can not move forward from something if you still keep on longing and hoping about it. You will keep on going back to where were you before the breakup happened. Those happy memories that you want to remember and the feeling of love that you want to hold on to. But you are over, and that is what you should face and accept.

However, accepting something that you don’t want in the first place is very difficult. Sometimes, it takes time and you should do it in your own pace.

But, what made me realize and helped to make it faster than the usual? I realized that what had happened is more than enough for us to let go of each other and move forward. And that I am already hurting myself which I don’t deserve at all. I don’t want to hurt myself. Not anymore.

I accepted that we were over. I accepted that things will be different and that I need to live each day without him. I did it before he arrived in my life and so I can do it now that he is gone.

Second thing is be open of what you feel to the people who love you. After we broke up, the first few people who knew about it were my friend, my officemate and my sister. As much as I want to keep it private and to myself, I can’t. I need to express what I felt before it will explode and ruin myself. And so I did. Until I shared to the rest of my family, friends, officemates and even random people who showed some care and concern. Well, there were also some people who just chatted me to ask and verify. I cannot lie. Not anymore so I answered them but not that detailed. My family, friends and officemates helped me a lot. With all the advices, time they spent to listen to me, bullies, jokes, food trip and night out.

Everything got lighter as days go by.

Third is find some diversion. You need to spend your time if possible, keep busy always so that you can stop thinking about him and the both of you. Do something you love, sleep if you want, eat somewhere, hang out with your family or friends, and have fun with yourself. For myself, the timing was so right because I was traveling almost every week plus there were many invitations of dinner or travel. I was really occupied that made me at least forgot what happened.

Fourth, know your self worth. In short, love yourself. The moment you will know what is your worth and learn to value it, you will start to have reference on how should someone treat you. And by then, you will start to love yourself. A love that you deserve. One of the positive things that I got from it was I knew my self worth. I know how should I be treated and what kind of guy/man should I have in the future. And more than that, I feel contented even if I am single because I get enough love from the people around me plus myself.

Fifth is be happy. Every time you are angry, lonely and miserable; you wasted a time of your life. And a time wasted will never be taken back. Before we broke up, I was a miserable and lonely person who cried silently and tried to smile even if I am not okay. When we broke up, I cannot feel anything. I did not even cry. But later on, I felt very angry. Until, I felt my heavy heart. Then I realized, it’s no longer okay. And so, I did everything to make myself happy. And today, I can be happy even if I am alone. Because it should be like that. We should not rely our happiness to someone. So that if they will be gone one day, you can still live a happy life. Also, learn to forgive. You cannot hate him forever because s/he has also done something wonderful in your life.

Sixth is be positive and be grateful. It might not be a good thing that happened. But look on a brighter side. What is the positive effect. And when you figured it out, be thankful that it happened and that things will be better. As what they say, “once a door closes, another door will open”. If not, the window will open of you. It ended because it is not for you and to give way to something better that will arrive. You can’t have two things in one time, that’s why you have to let one go. And don’t forget to be grateful always.

Seventh is stand up. Remember that there is a rainbow always after the rain. So you cannot just be weak and hurt for the rest of your life. You can cry and be sad. Yes! But should not be for a long time. Just enough to let the pain and anger be released. After that, stand up again and face the world with a better, wiser and stronger you.

Lastly, God is with us. I am not that super religious. I can even missed a mass. But, I really don’t know why God blessed me a lot. From the day that it happened to the heartbreaking day to the daily life from day 1 until today, he showed to me everything. And all I can do is thank Him. He surely does not leave us. We are never alone and will never be. Because God is with us, 24/7 and no day off. So talk to Him always.

Did I move one?

Honestly speaking, I cannot tell if I do 100 percent. But what I am sure of is that I am totally happy now. I have goals in life that I am excited to achieve. I stopped hating and being angry with them. I even greeted him during Christmas Day which I got mixed reactions. Some said it’s a wrong move because he might think I want to chase him. But I did that because I don’t want grudges though he might be so angry with me (which I don’t know). And for the spirit of Christmas. While others congratulated me because I’m being a brave girl.

I haven’t seen him yet after that but if it may happen, I know I can already smile and say hi. We might not be the “friend” thing but we can consider ourselves acquaintances with good memories shared together in the past.

It doesn’t matter to me if I totally moved on or not. What’s important to me now is that I am happy, contented and blessed. And one thing is for sure, we can no longer be together or be like we were before. Things did absolutely change.

Somebody even asked me, “do you still love him?” My answer is simple, “you cannot unlove someone. But the intensity of your love will be changed. It will lessen until you will just have a love for a friend.”

But how would you know if you moved on?

I don’t know. Haha. I haven’t tried before though.

Maybe, if you don’t feel anything about that person. If s/he doesn’t matter to you and you don’t care what s/he is up to. You are happy with yourself. You are living a life. You open your heart again to someone.

Whatever it is. If you have your heart broken, please fix it before being with someone. Don’t put the burden of fixing yourself to him or her. Enjoy being single. Do what you cannot do before. Glue all the broken pieces back. Prepare for what will happen. And when it happens, you know you are in a better position and whatever lessons you learned before will be of use now.

And now you know why I am single. 😜

Of course, aside from the fact that no one is interested in me, I am living a life now. But if you wanna treat me to some food trip, I’ll be glad. Though I can’t promise if I am free because my schedule is sometimes busy. As busy as someone who cannot sleep. Hahaha! 😀

Hope this post can help you in a little way. Remember, you are not alone. But every broken-heart has a different cause and different remedy. The process might be long or short but there will be no shortcut. You have to face and definitely, you are going to survive. You are brave! Don’t forget that. 😉

P.S. If you read my hugot and stuff like that, please be informed that it is not related to moving on. Haha! I just don’t know why I have many hugot. 🙈😁

Weekend in Siargao

Have you watched the movie Siargao? Jericho, Erich and Jasmine did a really good job there. However, what’s the best part about the movie? The location. It did define and show how beautiful Siargao. It might be getting famous these days yet you can still find yourself getting relax.

Right after watched the movie alone, I decided to buy a plane ticket to the island. I kinda missed it and so excited to see it. I have been there last May 2018 with some close people. But this time would be different as I will be traveling on my own.

Anyway, on my first visit to the island, everything was planned in advance. The place to stay, the tour to get, the island hopping boatman, etc. There were unforeseen circumstances but still we were able to handle it. We were really following the itinerary so that we can go all those places listed.

However, the trip this year is totally different. First, though I did book ahead of time the place where I will be staying, the difference is that the people I am sharing the room with. I booked a bed in a dorm type room of 3 pax. When I contacted the owner, she said that I am with a guy and a girl. But, when I got there, I found out that I am sharing it with 2 foreign guys. Yes! You read it right. Not just one but two guys. Imagine what would my mother will react if she knew it. Good thing, she didn’t know about it unless she will read my blog. HAHAHA!

I was staying in a newly opened Morrocan-inspired inn which is called Riad Masaya. I love this place. It is like a home away from home. Where the owners (Manuela, Vanessa and Jonas) and staff (Ate Inday & her family) were very accommodating, nice and helpful. They made my stay so relaxing and fun. They even let me used their bicycle for free, invited to have lunch with them and gave me a free ride to Boardwalk.

 

Second, I did not follow an itinerary. Though I planned it a little and even have activities in my mind but still I am not pressured to follow everything. Everything was flexible. Let’s start with a delayed flight. It was about an hour delay. And supposedly I will be joining an island hopping tour that will leave at 10AM. Unfortunately, I was still on my way to the hotel that time. Thus, I just requested for a refund of my down payment. Then, what did I do? I went to Bravo Beach Resort and had my brunch. I was able to stroll their beach after my lunch.

 

I went back to the inn and took a nap. I haven’t seen my roommates yet. They were both out the whole day. In the afternoon, the owner let me used their bicycle. I went to Boardwalk, took some photos and strolled around. Then, I joined a beach cleanup that was facilitated by S.E.A Movement (Siargao Environmental Awareness Movement). Then, I rode the bike after that and went back to the island inn.

When I got back, I changed and chill for awhile then decided to go to Harana Surf Resort for the dinner. I love the ambiance, the excellent customer service and of course, the delicious foods.

Then that’s how my day 1 in Siargao went.

However, I woke up in the middle of my sleep at around 3AM because of my drunk roommate who just arrived back in the hotel. He was shouting and cursing until I guess everyone in the hotel awoke. He was calling the owner and complaining about who knows it even existed. Maybe he had a bad time wherever he went that night. And I was just lying on my bed and waiting what might happen. I am also waiting what my other roommate will do. Good thing! The staff was able to handle it and ended that guest leaving the hotel. Then the rain poured. And I was able to go back to sleep after chatting with Ate Inday and the other guests in the lobby. #disaster #oddsOfDormTypeRoom HAHAHA!

The next day, I was greeted by my other roommate and we chatted about the incident for a few minuted.

Anyway, I was scheduled to surf that morning. I would supposedly it on day 1 but it was low tide in the afternoon. Jonas offered me a free ride to the Boardwalk and suggested to go to Oh, Wow Surf. And I did.

I met Joe (who happened to be a cousin of my friend which I found when I am back in Cebu) and John then, left my stuff. The next thing happened was that I was surfing. It was my second time but it’s kinda different in Mati. I did not go through the basic lesson but we directly had a ride.

The difference with Mati is that there are more people in Siargao compared in Mati. Thus, sometimes you could hit other surfers or something. But it is easier to surf in Siargao than in Mati. The waves in Siargao is calmer and consistent. I know it’s for the beginners.

Anyway, both is awesome and I did enjoy either in Siargao or Mati. That’s the important thing. 😀

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Chill na lang kay humana. Hehe

Meet Joe (left) & John (right) of Oh,Wow Surf!

Joe is the instructor while John is the photographer.

Me & my surf board. 🙂

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Beautiful and calm place ❤

Then I had my breakfast at Arka Hayahay then went back to the inn, changed and was invited for a lunch with the staff. The whole afternoon was spent chilling and sleeping. 😋

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Breakfast at Arka Hayahay

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Companion for the afternoon 🙂

When I was about to go out for dinner, I met another guest, Joy. She’s from Manila. We chatted for a few minutes before our trike arrived and went on a separate resorts. She went to Bravo Beach Resort and I went to Kermit Surf Resort.

When I got there, the restaurant is full. I was second or third on the waiting list. And their waiting time is about an hour. Yes. That’s how in demand the place is. I was told that I can wait in the bar and order a drink or pizza. I ordered Avocado Shake. It was served on a mason jar with a bamboo straw.

After an hour, I was approached by the staff and was asked if it is okay with me if I share the table with other customers, and that’s not a problem though. So, we shared the long table (they were 3 women) and I am alone. Hehe.

The restaurant is so busy. The staff is moving fast coping up with the orders of the customers. While the customers are busy talking, eating and taking photo of their orders.

 

I then met Joy after at the Boardwalk then we went back in the inn where again we were chilling. Manuela did invite me to join her and her friends hanging out but I had an early flight the next day.

I was picked up by the van the next day as early as 7AM and travelled for almost an hour to Sayak Airport. And directly went to the office when I arrived in Cebu coz I have a meeting. 😀

TIPS

  1. Many tourists are coming to Siargao. Thus, hotels get fully booked easily. So, if you’re going to the island, make sure that you book ahead unless you want to spend extra time and effort looking for a place to stay. Or worst, pay an extra amount for a bed.
  2. If you are choosing to stay in a dorm type room but does not want to be mixed with other gender, make sure to book an exclusive all-male or all-female room. However, I am not sure if there is a hotel offering that.
  3. If you are coming to the island by air, you can book an airport service for Php 300 to pick you up. The airport is about an hour to General Luna where most of the hotels and resorts can be found.
  4. Commuting within Siargao is kinda expensive. At least you have to pay for Php 20 per way in getting to where you want to be. And so, if you know how to drive a motorcycle, it is better to hire one during your stay. Aside from saving, you have the flexibility of going to wherever in the island. Or you can rent a bicycle. You can save and get fit at the same time. Plus, it is fun. 🙂
  5. I found an ATM in the town proper. It is kinda far if you are staying near the Boardwalk. However, some resorts and restaurants do accept credit card. Though it is still best to bring cash.
  6. There are resorts who organized different tours in the island. Be it the island hopping, Sugba Lagoon or Magpupungko Pool. You can reach My Siargao Guide or Kermit Surf Resort.
  7. Night out activity is present as well in the island. You can ask the hotel staff if where will it be.
  8. If you want to surf, you can find many surfing instructors offering their service in Boardwalk. The rate is Php 500 for one-hour surf board rental and instructor, Php 300 for the photographer and Php 300 for the catcher.
  9. If you want to explore the Boardwalk, there is an entrance fee of Php 50 per person so take all the pictures you want and spend more time to make it sulit.
  10. Foods in the island might be expensive but if you can cook, choose to stay in an inn or hotel where you can cook. It will make you save and let you eat what you really want.

#LaFamiliaGoesPalawan : El Nido Tour A

On the next day, we waited for the driver to pick us up for the Tour A. We were able to book with Northern Hope Tours for an exclusive tour. We just paid the Php 1200 per head times 8 pax (Keizhsa is free).

Kuya Cris (our driver in Puerto Princesa) picked us almost 9AM and brought us to their office for the payment. After that, their staff guided us to the port where the tour guide and boat crew were waiting.

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We were able to depart from the port at 9:50AM. It started with Kuya Elfer, our tour guide, introduced himself and the rest of their crew then informed us on the rules.

Ipil 2 Island

Our first stop is supposedly the Seven Commando Island. But, when we were close to the island, Kuya Elfer told us that the island is crowded. So instead he suggested that we will go to a nearby island that is still beautiful but less crowd. Actually, no one was there. It is the Ipil 2 Island. If I am not wrong, Seven Commando Island is the Ipil 3 Island. It is called Ipil because there are many Ipil-Ipil trees in the island.

The Helicopter Island can also be seen from here.

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We spent about 30 minutes taking photos, snorkeling and swimming. Until Kuya Elfer called us to go back to the boat and proceed to our next destination.

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Big Lagoon

Next is the Big Lagoon. It is about 10-15 minutes away. We toured inside the lagoon and took some photos. Until we went to our next stop.

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Secret Lagoon

Third stop is the Secret Lagoon. The last time I did Tour A, we were not able to go here. So I have no idea why it is called that.

Kuya Elfer told us that we went there first while his colleagues were preparing our lunch. We were required to wear a life vest. Just because the water from the boat to the entrance of the lagoon is deep.

We fell in line for a few minutes until it was our turn to get inside. The catch, you need to crawl on a small hole to get inside.

The lagoon’s water is a mixture of salt water and fresh water.

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After that, we went back to our boat. We will supposedly be having our lunch in the nearby island but it was full. So, we just had it on the boat.

When we got our tummy full, we swam for a while then headed to our next destination.

Miniloc Island

Again, supposedly we will be going to Shimizu Island but it is crowded. Thus, they brought us to Miniloc Island. We had snorkeling far from the shore. We are not allowed to dock in the shore because it is a private property. It is Bayug Beach Resort.

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But, we enjoyed seeing all those fishes and corals. The island is very rich.

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Small Lagoon

Our last stop is the Small Lagoon. This is one of the highlights of Tour A, aside from Big Lagoon. Kuya Elfer told us that we can spend an hour here. We also have the option to either rent a kayak or just swim. We chose the first, of course. Who wants to swim for 500 meters from the boat to the entrance (just the entrance). Haha!

The lagoon’s deep is 12 feet.

We rented a kayak and went inside. Roamed around, took photos, and swam until Kuya the lifeguard told us that we need to head back to the boat.

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That ended our tour. We did really have fun. And thanks God that it was sunny the whole time and the sea is calm.

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We then rode a tricycle to the place we were staying. Just changed and ate another set of delicious seafood at Jarace Grill.

We then roamed around the town and bought some souvenirs.

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This is where we stayed in El Nido.

 

 

TIPS!

  1. Follow the rules and the do’s & don’ts that the tour guide will inform you. It is their way of protecting the island.
  2. Do not forget to bring and apply your sun protection. The heat of the sun is really damaging.
  3. Enjoy every place that you will be visiting. Appreciate the beauty of nature. You travelled far so make the most of your trip.
  4. Respect your fellow tourists. Fall in line if needed to.
  5. Inform the tour coordinator ahead if you have allergies. Most of the foods they will serve have seafood, pork and chicken.
  6. Bring extra money for the rental of kayak and if you want to buy drinks in the island.
  7. Follow the instructions of your tour guide to avoid accidents.
  8. Wear the vest if necessary.
  9. Take as much photos as you can. It is totally instagrammable and picturesque.
  10. Remember, take nothing but pictures; leave nothing but footprints and kill nothing but time.

 

Visit El Nido now and experience the lovely nature in this side of the country. Plus their foods are delicious. 🙂