Atburan Rockies is a very raw and unknown site with caverns and towering limestone rock formations hidden in the mountainous region of General Nakar, Quezon. Aside from locals who call it “Kulungang Bato,” the site has only been explored by a handful of outdoor enthusiasts and mountaineers from the UP Outdoor Recreation Group (ORG). In fact, when I was researching about the place, I couldn’t find any existing write-up or background information about the area.
Whenever people ask me what the best destination I’ve been to in the Philippines is, it’s easy for me to say Batanes. In terms of raw landscapes, the northernmost province of the Philippines is really a dream destination. Though I love a lot of places I’ve been to around the country, Batanes is really special. It offers a unique blend of breathtaking scenery, natural attractions and well-preserved culture. Plus the locals here are just the most hospitable and kind people I’ve ever met. Everyone and everything here just feels so pure and good.
Tarak Ridge. The name alone (a combination of the words “tarik” which means steep and “tabak” or hunting knife) should have given me a clue of what to expect. Standing 1,130 meters above sea level, this mountain in Mariveles, Bataan offers a scenic view of Bataan, Corregidor and neighboring islands. On clear days, you can see Manila Bay all the way up to Cavite. But to enjoy the stunning view, you first have to go through a moderately challenging hike through dense grasslands and steep trails that involves clambering over roots and holding on to branches for support.
The province of Bataan is best known for its historical and cultural attractions. The Battle of Bataan is famous for being one of the last stands of American and Filipino soldiers before they were overwhelmed by the Japanese forces during World War II. The Bataan Death March, where the infamous march started, was also named after the province.
But aside from its historical sites, Bataan is a rising eco-tourism destination with beaches, mountains, turtle sanctuaries, bird-watching sites, springs and waterfalls. Bataan lies within two major peaks, Mount Natib and Mount Mariveles, which are ideal destinations for adventure-seekers. If you’re a mountain biker or hiker, you’ll want to check out the natural trails that Bataan has to offer. Continue reading
We got to the summit of Mt. Daraitan right after sunrise, that magical golden hour when early morning daylight bathes the landscape in a soft glow. The rays cast a hazy orange hue on one side of the jagged limestone rock formations. As I clambered to the top of one rock facing the East, I got a silhouette view of mountain peaks in the distance. The view of the snaking river below was obscured by a sea of clouds blanketing the rest of the Sierra Madre Mountain Range.
For travelers, backpackers and province-based tourists, Manila is often just thought of as a stopover between flights on the way to another destination. The big city can be overwhelming with the heavy traffic and crowded streets. At first glance, there doesn’t seem to be much to do except eat out, go shopping in the malls, visit museums or churches. There’s also the gritty and chaotic areas of Quiapo and Divisoria, which have become synonymous with Manila.
I often take the tourist sights in Manila for granted because this is where I live and work. But if I were a first-time tourist in the Philippines, or if I had to take around foreign tourists, balikbayans, expats or province-based friends, what would I do and where would I go? Here are some suggestions of unique and fun activities you can do while in Manila.
Summer is coming soon, and beaches in popular destinations near Manila are going to be really crowded as usual. For those looking for a different destination to visit this summer, Jomalig Island in Quezon offers an escape. It’s not that easy to get to, which means the place remains unspoiled. The golden sand beaches, agoho pine trees, refreshing atmosphere and naturally sights here are just stunning. Jomalig Island is best for those who enjoy unspoiled beaches. This is where you can enjoy back to basics camping away from the crowds.
Since I previously wrote about our Weekend in Jomalig Island, I’ve been getting a lot of inquiries about how to get there and other questions. So here’s a travel guide to help you out with tips compiled from my experience, helpful locals who left comments on my previous post, Jomalig Quezon’s Facebook page and some 2016 updates from blog reader Senilicius (in the comments section).
Updated August 2016
A set of statues made alternatively of stone and candlewax dotted the gardens. In the middle of the green lawn was an antique four poster bed laid out with crisp white sheets. Several beautiful silver art pieces work showed women cradling babies beneath their steel spiral wombs. Everywhere I looked there seemed to be doorways and paths waiting to reveal more hidden treasures.
The biggest entertainment convention is back, bigger, better, and bolder. Gathering all your favorite stars from History Asia Channel under one roof, History Con 2017 answers the question, “Huh?!?”
Bohol is one of the island provinces in the Philippines that I don’t mind visiting again and again. There are a lot of beautiful sights to see here for first-time visitors, including the famed Chocolate Hills, cute tarsiers and Loboc River. But if you’ve seen all that already, you’ll probably just want to take it slow and enjoy the laid-back beach life with loved ones.
PRESS RELEASE — Three graduating college students from Davao City won the Juan For Fun (JFF) 2017 Backpacking Challenge, each taking home a Cebu Pacific Travel All-You-Can pass for unlimited local and international short-haul destinations for one year, plus pocket money from co-presenters GetGo and Union Bank. The three students—18-year-old Gloria Andrea Mendoza; and 19-year-olds Christian Dominic Ang and Chyn Ira Crisostomo, comprised Team Juanton in the annual event presented by Cebu Pacific, the Philippines’ leading carrier.
There’s not a lot of variety when it comes to dining in the sky, especially if you’re traveling on a low-cost airline. My trips usually start with an overpriced hotdog sandwich at the airport or if I’m really hungry, I’ll order cup noodles on the plane. But usually, I’ll just sleep through the flight and wait until I land to enjoy a good hot meal. I didn’t really expect to enjoy gourmet meals on-board a short-haul domestic flight.
As a freelance writer and travel blogger, I usually write about destinations or other people. Last month, I was asked to go in front of the camera for a photo shoot for Going Places Magazine, the monthly travel magazine of Manila Bulletin Publishing. First published in 1999 as Cruising, this is one of the longest-running magazines in the Philippines. This time, the editors chose to put the spotlight on “People of Travel” sharing features on Filipino bloggers and digital influencers who are changing the travel scene.