Traveling around the Philippines is indeed challenging. One reason for it is the country's geography. Unlike its Asian neighbors, where provinces and countries are only divided by an imaginary line that we fondly call borders, most provinces in the Philippines are divided by rough seas, stretching beyond what your mind can imagine.
It's quite easy to navigate by land when you are in Luzon and Mindanao. But in Visayas, it's a different story - it is a combination of land, air and sea. Despite the geographical challenge, Visayas is the most diverse island group of the country. The three regions - Western, Central and Eastern Visayas (Region VI, VII and VIII respectively) - have their own share of language, culture and heritage and a myriad of adventures.
A good friend of mine asked one question that made me dumbfounded for several minutes. Her question was, "What's the best place that you've visited in Visayas?". I answered "every place in Visayas is beautiful!". Technically speaking, I am wrong. My grammar teacher in grade school would get furious if she heard my answer. Best pertains to a thing that literally stood out from the rest. The best among the rest. Screw technicalities, I am just telling the truth.
So far, I have visited and stayed in Iloilo, Boracay, Cebu, and Siquijor.
It's more fun to get lost in Iloilo, so get lost everyone!
I got lost in Iloilo the first time I went there last year.
Basically, I just took a random jeepney and guess what? The jeepney took me to a random place too! Wow, I never thought that there's a place in Iloilo named Brgy. Random. Anyway, the last thing I remembered about this particular jeepney ride was this: I was still at the downtown area when all of the sudden, I saw big ships and a lot of people selling palengke goods along the street! Shoot!
What I did was, I got off the jeep after it made its way back to the downtown area and hailed a cab to SM. Sucks to be me.
It was rather a funny experience though. The following year, I came back here and even appreciated the city of Love more. If you love to eat, Iloilo is the best place to visit. One shouldn't leave Iloilo without trying their special La Paz Batchoy!
|Deco's Batchoy! Namit gid!|
Last May, I had the chance to witness the famous sunset of Boracay. It was truly beautiful. Plus, the weather during that time was fair! And oh, don't forget to put your hands up in the air and party like a rockstar in Boracay! I am not a party-person (I'm actually a party pooper LOLJK) but I love Boracay's vibe!
As I watch the sun slowly descend upon the world, I am always struck by a strange and timeless thinking that the world is still full of possibilities. I feel a connection to the grand, elusive scheme intertwining to all of humankind, and I am struck by something undefined. Even though I can't define that thing, it still compels me to do better with my life than what I have done so far.
From the Peru to Cebu
Now there goes the famous line of Enya's Orinoco Flow. Like any other metropolitan cities in the world, Metro Cebu is crowded, huge and cosmopolitan. But its real gems lie at the outskirts of the metro. Travel north and visit Bantayan and Malapascua Islands. Enjoy the pristine white sand beaches there with your family or friends!
If you're not a big fan of beaches, you can always try climbing Osmeña Peak, the province's highest peak, located at the middle of Cebu Island. It offers breathtaking views of Bohol Sea to the east and the coast of Moalboal to the west. It's not really a hard climb, I tell you! And oh, don't forget to swim with the tuki or whalesharks at Oslob!
Into the Mystical Island
I never expected that I'd visit Siquijor this year. It was never been part of my bucket-list. I don't know, I thought that I'd never get out alive once I set foot on this island. But 'lo and behold, I made it! Siquijor is just one of the most underrated places here in the country. The island boasts a LOT of beautiful beaches (see also: Salagdoong Beach), waterfalls and old convents and churches. People in Siquijor were very polite and hospitable to us when we went there last March. I'd definitely go back there soon and explore more of the island!
|Salagdoong Beach of Siquijor Island|
Future Plans and Everything Under the Sun
I still have a loooooooooong (repeated o's for emphasis) way before conquering the Visayas Region. I still have to experience MassKara Festival of Bacolod, visit my grandmother's hometown in Leyte, dive at the famous Apo Island, swim at the tranquil waters of Panglao, Bohol and the list goes on and on and on.
At this point, you'll probably understand why it is sooooo much difficult to point out the most beautiful place I've visited in Visayas.