Road Trip Itinerary: Bicol Highlights


Over the years, I’ve gone back and forth from Manila to my hometown Naga City in Camarines Sur. I’ve also gone on road trips with the family to nearby provinces of mainland Bicol: Camarines Norte, Albay and Sorsogon. The Manila to Bicol route passing the Asian Highway 26 (AH26) (also known as the Pan-Philippine Highway or Maharlika Highway) is a major road trip route on the island of Luzon in the Philippines. After traversing from Manila to Bicol, you can cross all the way to Visayas via the Roll-on Roll-Off Ferry from the Matnog Port in Sorsogon to reach Allen in Samar and head towards Mindanao.

I’ve been getting inquiries from people planning to drive this route whether by car or motorcycle (and even a few long-distance bikepackers), so I’ve decided to compile a suggested itinerary covering the essentials and some travel tips.  Continue reading

Family Staycation at Marco Polo Hotel Ortigas

When I travel or go backpacking on my own, I don’t mind sleeping in run-down hostels with public restrooms, camping in a tent on the beach or even just hanging up a hammock somewhere for the night. But when I travel with my family, I want to make sure they’re comfortable. Hotel staycations are a nice way to relax and can be a lot of fun if you’re with family or friends.

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Food Trip Staycation at Taal Vista Hotel in Tagaytay

Tagaytay is one of the country’s most popular tourist destinations. For those coming from the metro, this is a favorite weekend getaway because of the refreshing scenery, cooler climate and the variety of restaurants for food tripping. While you can visit Tagaytay on day trips, it’s better to spend a night or two to really enjoy the place and have more excuses to eat. Last weekend, I found myself with a bunch of travel bloggers on a major food-trip staycation courtesy of Taal Vista Hotel.

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Taza Fresh Table in Tagaytay

When it comes to quick weekend or day trip getaways, Tagaytay City is always a top choice for those coming from the metro. The refreshing view of Taal Lake and the variety of restaurants always makes Tagaytay a favorite foodie destination. One of the best places for dining with a view is the historic Taal Vista Hotel. After enjoying several buffet meals at Cafe Veranda and dinners by the fireplace at the Lobby Lounge, our hosts saved the best for last with a heavy breakfast/brunch at Taza Fresh Table.

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Red Planet Hotel Amorsolo, Makati

For someone who lives in Quezon City, going anywhere in Makati feels like a major hassle. I used to work in the area and hated the commute so much that I resigned and eventually became a freelancer who works from home. Now, I usually avoid going here unless absolutely necessary. 

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10 Things to Do in La Union

When it comes to quick getaways from Manila, La Union is a good choice for barkadas and weekend warriors. This laid-back coastal town in the Ilocos region is easily accessible from Manila, has a wide range of accommodations to fit any budget and lots of restaurants to choose from for all your food trip needs. Most people come to La Union to enjoy the beach and the waves, but that’s not the only thing you can do there. For first-timers planning a trip to La Union, here are a few of the fun and unique activities you can do in La Union.

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Food Trip: La Union

Being by the beach sure works up an appetite. There’s really something about the fresh sea breeze, the laid-back vibe, and all those energy-sapping water activities that get you craving for comfort food like burgers and pizza, fresh and grilled seafood, hearty servings of Filipino favorites, and extra rice. If you’re going on a trip to La Union anytime soon, here are a few restaurants (mostly in the surfing capital of San Juan) where you can have your fill of great food.

food trip la union

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Villa Escudero Plantations & Resort in Tiaong, Quezon

Villa Escudero is one of the oldest and most famous resorts in the Philippines. This coconut plantation and resort in Tiaong, Quezon has been around for decades, having opened to the public in the 1980s. It’s a top tourist destination for foreigners and balikbayans who want to experience traditional Filipino culture and heritage. I’ve always been curious about the place because of its famous restaurant by the waterfalls, but I never got around to checking it out during previous road trips to and from Bicol because of time constraints.

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KRB Off-Road Track in Antipolo

After my Basic Off-Road 101 Training Session in MX Messiah Fairgrounds in Rizal, Coach Mel of Mel Aquino’s Yamaha Off-Road Training Camp (MAYOTC) offered to show the students that day the KRB Off-Road Track in Antipolo City. The 36-hectare natural park offers a more technical course and controlled environment for training. It’s usually reserved for advanced classes where students have to ride through rolling terrain, do jumps, clear logs and rocks.

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Hike to Atburan Rockies in Gen. Nakar, Quezon

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.

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