Hiking to Mt. Pinatubo

Mount Pinatubo’s eruption in 1991 is one of the most devastating natural calamities in Philippine History. After 600 years of dormancy, Mt. Pinatubo’s erupted. Said to be the second largest eruption of the 20th century, the effects of the eruption were felt worldwide.

hiking mt. pinatubo crater lake travelup

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Hotel-Hopping in the North (Take 2)

The year is about to end and I still haven’t finished writing about Lakbay Norte 3, the 8-day media tour of the Northern Philippines. Aside from all the activities, the restaurants we ate in and hotels we stayed in played a huge part in making the trip so great. In the tradition of my hotel-hopping post for Lakbay Norte 2 (which kick-started my whole key collection), here’s a quick rundown of the different hotels we stayed in during the trip for LN3.

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Aeta Youth Festival in Tarlac

A couple of weeks ago, I found myself again in a community in Capas, Tarlac to witness an Aeta Youth Festival. Last year, I went there for the First Aeta Forest Food Festival, an event which highlighted the traditional food. Continue reading

Need for Speed: Go-Karting in Tarlac

Imagine being stuck in slow-moving traffic on the streets of Manila. The cars are jammed bumper to bumper as far as you can see. Huge trucks and buses flank you to either side. It seems like an eternity for the light to change from red to green. You seethe in fury as the cars crawl a few inches forward before the light switches to red again. Now imagine being able to speed away with no cares in the world. If you want to try living life in the fast lane, try go-karting. Continue reading

First Aeta Forest Food Festival

1st Aeta Forest Food Festival. Capas Tarlac near Mt. Pinatubo. Aetas will show how to hunt bayawak, snakes, wild boar & cook food using traditional methods of the forest through customs, dances & rituals. Will also share traditional food customs with Agta, Dumagat tribes from Zambales, Quezon, Rizal.”

The text message invitation forwarded by Dondi Tawatao, a photojournalist friend who shoots for Getty Images, had me interested at once. Early the next morning we were headed to Capas, roughly 3 hours away from Manila, via a Victory Liner bus and then on a tricycle bound for Barangay Sta. Juliana. Though we initially planned to return to Manila the same day, the long tricycle ride through a winding mountain road where houses were few and far between, gave us a clue that we were probably going to be spending the night there. Continue reading