Monday, October 31, 2011

Seven Travel Tips for Philippines

Somewhere near mainland Asia lies an archipelago that consists of 7,107 islands, scattered like pearls on the deep blue sea. There's so much to see in the Philippines - picturesque white sand beaches, majestic underwater rivers, the towering mountains, volcanoes and plateaus and the lush green vegetation of rainforests.

Philippines is indeed one of the premier destinations in Asia. And because seven is my favorite number, I will share seven travel tips to have a worthwhile experience here in this tropical paradise.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

CARAGA Series: Balangay's Journey

Butuan City, Agusan del Norte, Philippines


While excavating the site in search of the Golden Tara, we have found something extraordinary. Believe it or not, our team had unearthed the remains of the historical balangay boat. Not just one, but three of them! Since these artifacts were all fragile, we carefully excavated them.

You won't believe that these boats have traveled as far as China!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

CARAGA Series: Cruisin' at Agusan River

After the two-day regional camp of VYLH, the organizers invited us to have a 30-minute river cruise at the mighty Agusan River (emphasize of the adjective mighty). It was my first time to experience such and I had learned so many things about the river - a story on how it served the lives of Butuanons for generations.

Water hyacinths

Sit back, relax and enjoy this virtual tour to the mighty Agusan River!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Mindanao: The Land of Promise and False Stories

About 800 kilometers from the capital city of Manila lies the island of Mindanao where people enjoy the abundant natural resources, dance barefoot to their own music, watch the beautiful sun as it sinks to the western horizon and children draw their dreams and aspirations on the pristine white sand beaches of the island.

The different colors of Mindanao.

However majority of the multitude didn't know about this. What they are reading on local and international news is just a part of the place called 'The Land of Promise'.

Monday, October 24, 2011

CARAGA Series: En Route to Butuan City

I was invited to become a facilitator and guest speaker of the Caraga-wide camp of VYLH (Volunteer Youth Leaders for Health) held at Butuan City, Philippines. It was the first regional camp of VYLH organized by the Caraga-based Pioneer and K4 volunteers of the said network.

The City Hall of Butuan

And I got excited after I learned that we're going to have a city tour after the camp.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Clean City of Tagum & Miko's Brew

The first time I've visited Tagum City was around 2005. We went to different banana plantations, the unfinished gargantuan Christ the King church, the mayor's office and other different places. Back then, the roads were chaotic and I didn't like it.

I went back there in 2006 to attend the Regional Press Conference in an elementary school located at Madaum. Nothing had changed.

Yesterday, I had the chance to go back there to attend my cousin's civil wedding and I was surprised... really surprised, well, in a good way.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Davao City's First Green Hotel

Nowadays a lot of hotels claim to be a garden hotel or a hotel with a garden but if you take a closer look, these hotels are not close enough to be considered as a 'green' hotel. If you want to get the complete nature look and feel even if you're in the middle of a sprawling city, you better check in at North Palm Hotel and Garden and see for yourself!

Suite Room of North Palm Hotel and Garden

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Eat Like A King at The Royale House

Nowadays, people have been constantly looking for cheap restaurants to satisfy their gastronomic needs at an affordable price, but eating there has its own pros and cons. Services may not be that good and so as the food. In the end, it's not worth it at all.

The newly renovated lobby of Royale House Travel Inn & Suites

But not at The Royale House Travel Inn & Suites where they offer mouth-watering authentic Japanese rice bowl cuisines at a very affordable price!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Planespotting Is A Fun Activity

Yesterday, I went to the airport control tower to try my 70-200 f/4.0 and 55-250 f/4.0-5.8 telephoto lenses. Seeing those mechanical birds arriving and departing at Davao International Airport really excites me.

Davao International Airport (DVO, PH)

More so, it was my first time to try the zoom lenses given by my generous uncle.

The following photos were taken from 9:10 AM to 3:00 PM at the airport control tower.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Other Side of Samal

Almost one month after my graduation, my high school barkada (who happens to attend the same university, except for one) decided to chill and unwind at one of the secluded beaches of Samal Island. I was fortunate enough to have a friend whose family partly owns a beach resort there.

I’ve been to Samal Island for countless times already but I was still excited for this trip, knowing that the place we’re going to stay was located at the other side of the island… and I haven’t been there.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

My New Travel Buddy: Canon EOS 1000D

All photos that I've posted on this blog were taken from my two trusty digital point-and-shoot cameras: Sony Cybershot S930 and Canon Powershot A480. My first camera was the former and it was an early Christmas gift from my parents back in 2009. On the other hand, the latter was bought by my mom but later gave it to me since she didn't like it.

Just last Sunday, something unexpected happened to me and it was one of the happiest moments of my life.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Transfiguratively Speaking

On our way back to Davao from Camiguin Island, we visited the Monastery of the Transfiguration (also known as Transfiguration Church) located at the outskirts of Malaybalay City, Bukidnon. Base from what I’ve learned from my Humanities (Art and Society) subject, this building was designed by Leandro Locsin, National Artist for Architecture. Coincidentally he’s the same man behind the iconic old terminal of Davao International Airport.


Monastery of the Transfiguration


Famous from its modern architecture, the Transfiguration Church houses the monks who vowed to follow the Rule of St. Benedict by living a contemplative life in their quest for God.