Palawan is probably one of the best island destinations for riders in the Philippines. It’s the largest province in the country in terms of total area of jurisdiction and the main road network is just excellent. You get to scratch that urge to just ride on a long stretch of road and get the benefit of relaxing in beautiful beach-side towns at the end of each day.
Cebu is one of the most developed provinces of the Philippines and one of the country’s top tourist destinations. Over the years I’ve traveled back and forth here for various work trips, media tours and solo backpacking trips. While I was familiar with the main tourist spots within Cebu City, it wasn’t until I had to complete tasks while exploring the island on my own on a motorbike as a finalist for Wrangler’s #TrueWanderer campaign in 2016 that I really fell in love with the place.
Learning how to scuba dive is just one of those things that’s always been on my bucket list. I enjoy snorkeling, but have never tried diving before. I have no second thoughts jumping from crazy heights for extreme activities like skydiving and bungy jumping, but for some reason the thought of drowning and suffocating underwater scares the heck out of me. But I always like to try out new things when I travel. This year, I promised myself that I would choose trips based on what I really want to do and start seriously ticking all activities and destinations from my bucketlist while I still have the time, energy and opportunities to do so. Life is short, so you might as well do what makes you happy and enjoy, right?
As a frequent traveler, I’ve encountered my fair share of horror stories on the road. From being the victim of a travel scam where drivers take the roundabout scenic route to a nearby destination so they can overcharge you to those unbelievably low-priced group tour deals where you end up getting squeezed in a van like sardines on your way to a destination.
These days, it’s hard to trust travel deals and products. If it looks too good to be true, there’s probably a catch. The good thing is you can easily check online if a service or product is really safe and legit. This can apply to hotels, restaurants, gadgets, online travel agencies and travel apps. Continue reading
Marinduque is an island province in the Philippines best known for being the home of the Moriones Festival, one of the oldest religious festivals in the country celebrated during Holy Week. Everywhere you go in the province, you can spot references to the icons of the Moriones, men and women in costumes and masks wearing garb of biblical Roman soldiers.
Macau is best known for its glitzy casinos. But this special administrative region of China, just an hour away from Hong Kong is one of the main bucket-list destinations of adrenaline junkies. If you’re into extreme activities, you’ve probably heard of the Macau Tower Convention & Entertainment Centre, simply known as the Macau Tower, home to the world’s highest commercial Bungy Jump.
My solo ride around Samar Island has been one of the most memorable rides I’ve done this year. I got to traverse through three provinces of (Western) Samar, Northern Samar and Eastern Samar. Since it’s the third largest island in the Philippines, it’s is a bit challenging getting around by public transportation. The main cities are geographically located far from each other and vans and jeeps don’t leave regularly. Usually, you have to wait for public transport vehicles to get filled up with passengers, so getting from one place to another usually requires a lot of waiting time. Since my main purpose was sightseeing and ease of access getting around, I thought I could cover more ground on a motorbike.
For riders just after a pure straight ride minus all the activities and sightseeing, they could probably loop the whole area I covered in a day. I allotted four days for this because I prefer driving only 4-5 hrs a day in the morning, so I have more time to enjoy the place and chill out in the afternoon.
If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you’ve probably tried camping out in different places around the country. There’s always something peaceful about sleeping outdoors whether you’ve pitched a tent, hung up a hammock, or just decided to sleep out in the open by the beach, beside a lake, up in the mountains or in a forest campsite. But it’s going to be very hard to top sleeping under the stars on a two-meter wide cliff ledge 400 feet above the ground
For those who want to take their outdoor adventures to greater heights, the Vertical Bivouac extreme adventure in Bukidnon is one of the most bucketlist-worthy camping experiences you can try in the Philippines. Think of it as cliff-camping minus the tent!
Because Metro Manila and many surrounding towns are highly urbanized and congested, a lot of us are always looking for easy escapes for day trips and weekend getaways. Just a couple of hours from the metro, the nearby provinces of Laguna and Quezon are good choices for those who want to experience the “simple country life.” You can spend the day in a farm or natural resorts, stay in cozy bed & breakfasts, dine in artistic and homey restaurants, and visit artist’s studios.
For those who like nature-tripping, art, culture and food, here are my top picks of places you can drive to for an easy countryside getaway relatively near Manila (excluding Nuvali and Tagaytay). Continue reading
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
As the World’s oldest Chinatown (established in 1594), Binondo in Manila is a well-known cultural and foodie haven. Here, you can find lots of authentic hole-in-the-wall establishments serving everything from flashy Cantonese-themed lauriat meals to homey Hokkien-style Tsinoy cooking. However, there are over 100+ restaurants in the area, so it can be quite overwhelming to decide where to eat.
Most people have at least 3 to 5 rewards cards in their wallets. You earn points for buying groceries from different supermarkets, for booking flights on various airlines, for purchasing anything at department stores, when loading gas or buying medicines. Even the simple act of buying coffee and pizza can earn you points that you can eventually redeem. The key word is eventually because it can take a while for those points to add up and amount to something. Most of the time, they just expire without you knowing and you end up not ever redeeming anything.
Puerto Princesa City, the capital of Palawan, is one of the most popular tourist cities in the Philippines. Best known for its beach resorts, stunning lagoons and the Underground River, Palawan is also a great place for foodies. Though you can now find malls with fast-food joints and international cuisine in Puerto Princesa, nothing beats sampling the homegrown cafes, feasting on fresh seafood, and trying out the unique eats the province has to offer. For first-time visitors, here are some of the must-eats to put on your foodie bucket-list in Puerto Princesa, Palawan.
Palawan is a province in the Philippines known for its beautiful beaches and islands. It’s the gateway to the Puerto Princesa Underground River, a World UNESCO Heritage Site and other tropical beach destinations including El Nido, which is becoming more popular with international tourists because of various media features citing it as among the best island in the world.
Inflatable Island is the biggest floating playground in Asia. Located in Olongapo City, Zambales, this seaside water park near Subic is a playground for adrenaline junkies. You can fly through the air before landing in the water in their Human Launcher, climb up a giant floating rock wall, swing from their Giant Tarzan Swing and Slide, jump on their gigantic Unicorn trampoline or just try not to fall into the water as you navigate through the crazy Wipeout-style obstacle course.
UPDATE January 2018: The Querocep Bridge along the Marifanta Highway was damaged by a landslide in December 2015 and is still being reconstructed. As of January 2018, what used to be a makeshift wooden bridge is now a steel bridge and is passable to all types of vehicles. The alternate route to get to Infanta is to pass through Real and Famy.
Photo courtesy of Carlo Clemente of Glorious Ride Bike Shop Continue reading