Sunday, December 22, 2013

Welcome to Davao!

" Davao City serves as the main gateway to Southern Philippines.  Direct flights to and from major cities in the Philippines  and Asia are available  via the Davao International Airport, a modern  facility able to handle  wider-bodied aircraft such as the Boeing 747, the Airbus A340 and the Airbus A330. Flight time to Manila (the country’s capital) is 100 minutes while Cebu City is 50 minutes away. It has daily flights to Singapore - serviced by SilkAir - and weekly-chartered flights to Manado,  Indonesia."

Read more here: Getting Around Davao

Waiting for our departure from Ninoy Aquino International Airport Termial 3

After 2 hours, touchdown Davao City! Our plane landed safely here at  Francisco Bangoy International Airport.
The airport is not that big but it is clean and the location is very convenient! This is quite close to some of the biggest shopping malls in the City.

First Destination: Haven's Peak Highland Resort

A resort nestled atop Maragusan Hill Offering 208 Steps ascending to its skyline provides sight of the picture perfect and great scenery amidst a mountainous backdrop. You have the chance to search for that inner peace on its blossoming grounds or simply just have a time-off walk and unwind on the resort's beautiful landscape.

Be enchanted with the breathtaking cool climate and feel the mist. You can either karaoke the night away or enjoy a chat under the stars, while dining on appetizing foods.

Be one with nature...experience a simple and hospitable service. We're glad to have you with us at Haven's Peak where experience lingers on!

Read more here: Welcome To The Haven's Peak Highland Resort

Check my blog about it here: Trip to Haven's Peak Highland Resort

Few minutes away from Haven's Peak, there is a popular hot spring. They called it Kanlawig Hot Spring Resort.


Welcome to Eden Nature Park!


Ahuh! This is just one of the bats' caves that you can see in Monfort Batcave.

Hello Maxima! Maxima is such a lovely place!
40-Meter Drop at Maxima Aquafun's Giant Slide

Close to Maxima, you can visit Hagimit Waterfalls!

"Davao is an anchor tourist destination and one of the 7,107 times more islands that make up the Philippine archipelago. It is a natural haven for both sedate and daring pursuits.

Davao, on the southeastern seaboard of Mindanao, is attracting more tourists because of its rich culture, abundant natural resources, forests, wildlife sanctuary and the magnificent presence of Mt. Apo, (the tallest mountain in the country). Davao City limits sprawl over 224,000 hectares, among the largest in the world, leaving ample space for environmentally friendly expansion and development.

If you’re in for an exciting and unforgettable experience for both business and leisure, come to Davao and feel the captivating lure of nature’s bounty fused with cosmopolitan comforts. A city that’s bustling yet peaceful, modern yet rustic. Anytime of the year, there’s always a good reason to visit Davao City.

Davao City is a place like no other. Offering the best of urban amenities and rural pleasures, it is a place where business an leisure are interchangeable. Where the luxuries of cosmopolitan living complement the breathtaking beauty of the great outdoors."

Source: Beautiful Davao

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


It was still dawn when we woke up and got ready for that day's activity. We were fetched by a 4 by 4 jeep from our hotel up to La Paz Sand Dunes. 

La Paz Sand Dunes or Bantay Bimmaboy consists of an area of approximately 85 square kilometers (52 square miles) of protected sandy coastal desert and beach close to Laoag City, the capital city of Ilocos Norte in the Philippines. 

The area is locally known as "Bantay Bimmaboy", a name which refers to a perception that dunes' formations resembled closely like pigs. The area is also known as the "Desert of the North" and it is a popular location for movie makers since it is a good venue for shooting films. 

Source here: LA PAZ SAND DUNES

You should really be here and don't you ever miss this super fun adventure.

From the left (Our super cool 4 x 4 driver Kuya Anthony, Me, and Ate Cindy, my travel buddy/sister)

Oh! The sun is about to rise! Look at these grasslands, they look so amazing!

Okay wait. My experience riding here was just like riding on a roller coaster and mind you, I never tried riding a roller coaster in my entire life. 

But oh c'mon! I was able to survive! But if you have some heart-related problems, don't try this one. :(

Oh yes, I don't have a driver's license yet...but, who says I cannot drive this one? It's just a piece of cake! Haha! (Kind of boastful here...uhm, please excuse me, haha)

Few meters away from those sand dunes, we went to this seashore. Waves were big that time. Yeah, I cannot swim here. (Oh I forgot, even if the waves were not that big, I cannot really swim there since I don't know how to swim ever since the world began, haha)

Perfect Jump shot!

After the roller- coaster-like ride with a 4 by 4 Jeep and a short break in the seashore, we tried, ta-dah! SAND BOARDING. I'm pretty sure that you have already heard about wakeboarding or snowboarding before.

Okay, so now, you should look forward to sand boarding this time. 

I never had any experience trying any forms of boarding (Oh yeah, except boarding on the plane, LOL).

 But wait! Before doing this one, there are some things that
I would like to share with you:

1. Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from the sand.
2. It is better to wear long sleeves shirt and leggings. In this way, you will only remove lesser sand from your body once you clean yourself later, haha!
3. Don't open your mouth as you slide because sand might enter your mouth... seriously. I know that you are either nervous or excited but try to close your mouth when shouting. Aha, you have heard it right! Shouting while your mouth is close. Uhm, I actually did that!  It works! :D


Since, we were beginners,we just sat on the board.
I think advanced "sandboarders" already stand on the board as if they are surfing on the sea.

When you are planning to visit Laoag City, grab the opportunity to experience this so good and so much fun adventure! Yeah, Ate Cindy and I enjoyed it! Even if it was just the two of us. Perhaps it would be more fun if we were 4 or 6 that time. 

***Mas masaya sumakay sa Jeep pag 4 or more para siksikan at hindi madaling tumapon habang paakyat, pababa, at patagilid yung Jeep. Haha!** 

***Enjoy life! Enjoy traveling because we are only young once.*** 

***Photos are credited to Miss Cindy Rose Santillana and Sir Anthony and company***

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

ILOCOS: A wonderful Land of the North

This 4 nights-3days trip was happened last November 11 to 14, 2013.
We booked a promo Cebu Pacific plane tickets from Manila to Laoag.
We left Manila at 7:05PM then arrived around 8:10PM in Laoag International airport.
My travel buddy, Ate Cindy Rose Santillana

Welcome to Laoag City!


Vigan City Tour Destinations
Burgos Museum 
Crisologo Museum

Heritage village

Saint Pauls Cathedral/Bantay Church

Baluarte Ni Chavit

Syquia Mansion/Hidden Garden
Heritage Village/

Vigan City is the capital city of Ilocos Sur and the seat of the provincial government. The city is located at the western coast of the large island of Luzon and is facing the South China Sea and is 408 kilometers northwest of Manila. The name Vigan came from the Ilocano word "kabiga-an" pertaining to the plant "biga" which is a tuberous plant that once grew along the banks of its rivers.

It was once a thriving center for trade and commerce among the people of Ilocandia and the Cordilleras. Vigan is situated at the delta of the Abra River going to the South China Sea. This position at the mouth of the river connected to the China Sea has made trade feasible and convenient with other islands and with China. Vigan was where Juan de Salcedo established the Spanish government of Ilocos and was made the seat of the Bishopric of Nueva Segovia in 1778. It became the center of Spanish rule and influence and the preaching of Catholicism and pacification movements in the Ilocos Region.  

Inside the Saint Paul Cathedral

Vintage-like MC Donalds in the City of Vigan!

Yey! Bah!

OH! Vintage National Bookstore?

Yeah, this is a type vintage! (Tak, tak, tak)

Caruaje came from Spanish word Carruaje which means carriage in English. Carriage is a vehicle with wheels drawn by one or more horses (click this for my source).

A kalesa or calesa (sometimes called a caritela/karitela) is a horse drawn calash (carriage) used here in the Philippines. The word, also spelled calesa, predates the Spanish conquest and descends ultimately from an Old Church Slavonic word meaning "wheels." This was one of the modes of transportation introduced in the Philippines in the 18th century by the Spaniards that only nobles and high-ranked officials could afford. They are rarely used in the streets nowadays except in tourist spots and some rural areas.
Source: Kalesa or Calesa

These jars are made of mud clays. According to our guide, this mud came from the farms somewhere in Ilocos Sur (He didn't specify the exact location).

muddy clay

Welcome to Baluarte!

Baluarte is an 80 hectares of gently rolling terrains, hills and mountain sides, the structures of facilities and amenities, its phases of construction is in its best possible realistic and natural habitat for good and sound animal care.

Located along the western seaboard of Northern Luzon 408 kilometers north of Manila, bounded in the South by South China Sea, Baluarte has its breathtaking view of Vigan City. Baluarte is open to the public and the admission is FREE. According to their website, "it is actually Governor Chavit's gift to the people of Vigan where residents are accorded free use of spaces for their livelihood programs."

Source: Baluarte



Laoag Tour Destinations

Paoay church

Malacanang of the North/Fort Ilocandia

Marcos Museum/Marcos Photo Gallery
Sinking Bell Tower
Saint Williams Cathedral/Santa Monica Church
Paoay Lake
Tobacco Monopoly/Aurora Park
Ilocos Museum  

The City of Laoag (Ilokano: Ciudad ti Laoag; Tagalog: Lungsod ng Laoag) is a third class city in the province of Ilocos Norte, Philippines. It is the capital city of Ilocos Norte, and the province' political, commercial, and industrial hub. It is the northernmost city in the Philippines and the location of the Ilocos region's only commercial airport. According to the 2010 census, it had a population of 104,904 people.

The Church of Saint Augustine, commonly known as the Paoay Church, is the Roman Catholic parish church of the municipality of Paoay, Ilocos Norte in the Philippines. Completed in 1710, the church is famous for its distinct architecture highlighted by the enormous buttresses on the sides and back of the building. In 1993, the church was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as one best examples of the Baroque Churches of the Philippines.

Source: Paoay Church


Malacañang of the North or Malacanang ti Amianan in Ilocano is always present in everyone’s itinerary when planning or visiting the northern province of Ilocos Norte. It is also dubbed as “Marcos Country”, Ilocos Norte because it is a home to many remnants of former President Ferdinand E. Marcos.

Masters' Bedroom of former President Ferdinand Marcos and former first lady Imelda Marcos.


Pauquin Biscocho Bakery Shop
Cape bojeador Light House
Kapurpurawan Rock Formation,White Rock formation
Bangui Windmills
Patapat Viaduct
Blue Lagoon
Zipline @ Hannah's Place
Paraiso Ni Anton
Pagudpud Beach Resort/Swimming 

He is LAM-ANG, a popular character in an epic Ilocano poem entitled "BIAG NI LAM-ANG" which means the life of Lam-Ang in English.

This place amazed me so much!

The Kapurpurawan rock formation is located on the rocky coast of Burgos, Ilocos Norte. It is known for its creamy white and streamlined limestone formations, which have been sculpted by different oceanic and weather forces. Burgos is located on the northwestern tip of Ilocos Norte.

Next Destination: BLUE LAGOON in Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte

The beautiful cove named Maira-ira Beach lies in Maira-ira Point, the northern tip of Pagudpud. This beach is more popularly known as Blue Lagoon and is one of the many attractions that the Province of Ilocos Norte has to offer. It has a long stretch of white sands kissed by clear, turquoise blue water. It  is one of the destinations usually included in the North Tour Package offered in Pagudpud.


Welcome to Hannah's Resort!

No, I am not in the US, I'm just here in the Philippines.

We tried sand boarding and we rode on a 4 by 4 Jeep. However, photos are not yet included here because I don't have some copies yet. I'll post a separate blog about that soon!

This is my blog about our sand boarding activity: (please click-->)SANDBOARDING