That Feeling…

I can’t recall when was the time I got engrossed into writing. I’m no blogger by heart, I’m not good in playing words and I’m absolutely not a bibliophile. They say people who likes to read are really good with words, so how can someone like me start to write? It’s a question that keeps hunting me whenever I thought about writing a short story or a blog entry. I always feel envious to people who can write well and has a creativity of expressing their thoughts and opinions through writing reviews and articles.

They say you surround yourself with the right people and you will become one. I met a friend 2 years ago who likes to read and does blog. I don’t have any idea if there’s a standard in writing but I always think she’s really good at it. I hate the fact that she can write hundred words in an hour and here I am struggling to write one paragraph. 😦 She motivated me to write what I want to say without using highfalutin words and always tell me to speak from the heart.

Don’t judge me! I’m not trying to belong, I just want to come out from my comfort zone and try something I have never done before. I want to share my experience and all the adventure that I will have in the future and jotting down the memories I always want to remember.

I am Dawn,

  • Free spirit DIY traveler
  • Frustrated photographer
  • Fangirl
  • Foodie
  • Otaku
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Jardin Necitas: 20,000 Glowing Tulips and Roses

Lips TULIPS 😳

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It’s not yet long ago since the 10,000 Roses Cafe opened in Cebu that kicked off the first LED Glowing flowers similar to the rose garden in Dongdaemon, South Korea. After 7 months, Bohol one of the most booming provinces in the Philippines introduced their newest attraction Jardin Necitas last September 27, 2017 – World Tourism Day.

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Jardin Necitas features 15,000 glowing Tulips that comes in a variety of colors and 5,000 red and white roses. According to the owner, she was inspired by the popularity of 10K roses in Cordova that even reached the province of Bohol. It is located at hilltop lot of Purok 5, Barangay Bagumbayan, Pilar.

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The best time for you to visit would be 4-5PM so that you will see how it looks during the day and at night, but because it’s very new expect a lot of people to flock in the place. According to my cousin who went there at night, it’s too congested and you will have difficulty parking your car or motorcycle.  Their entrance fee is 30PHP and they also have their cafe for the visitors.

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Jardin Necitas flower faux is planted to make it look real, but it’s just another mainstream attraction that has drawn in people, especially millenials who want to have a worthy intagrammable post. 😉😛

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HOW TO GET THERE:

The town of Pilar is the second town from Carmen the home of the famous Chocolate Hills. If you are coming from the city of Tagbilaran or Carmen you can ride a Bus going to Alicia and you can stop by Brgy. Bagumbayan, Pilar. Jardin Necitas is just along the highway about 15 minutes from Pilar Dam, the town’s main source of irrigation.

 

 

TEMPLE OF LEAH: A symbol of Lasting Love

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Love…is a feeling. A feeling that would make you do things that you thought impossible. Love is something you can give to anyone without any cost but how far will you go to show that you are madly in love with someone?

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Teodorico Adarna showed his undying love for his wife by building the Roman inspired Temple as a symbol of his loyalty and devotion for the love of his life Leah Villa Albino-Adarna. This temple of love as locals dubbed it is located in Barangay Busay, Cebu City which gives you a spectacular view of Cebu. This attraction is perfect for people who would appreciate the roman style architecture and a hone place for photoshoot. As you arrived in Temple of Leah you will be greeted by two golden lion in the entrance and statue of three women in the fountain. You will also felt the tranquility of roman atmosphere except for the fact that there’s a lot of people in the place.

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TIPS:

  • If you will go to Temple of Leah, I would also recommend to go first to Sirao Flower Farm since it’s close to each other. 
  • Haggle a motorcycle driver in J.Y Square going to Busay Flower Farm and Temple of Leah. Your driver will wait for you while you enjoy the view.
  • Entrance fee in temple of leah is 50php and 20php at Sirao Flower Farm
  • If you can, you visit the place early because it tends to get crowded in the afternoon before sunset.

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SAMBOAN: Chasing Waterfalls

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Samboan waterfalls has become one of the newest attraction in Cebu. Samboan is a fifth class municipality that is located in the Southern part of Cebu. This quiet town has been receiving flocking local and foreign tourist recently because of the activity they offer. Samboan is 3-4 hours travel from Cebu City via Barili-Bato Bus in South Bus Terminal and it is best recommended to go early to avoid a lot of people in the waterfalls. In our case, we went to South Bus Terminal at 2:30 in the morning hoping that there would be a bus that would left at 3AM but our bus departed at 3:45AM. We arrived at rotunda in Samboan at 7:45 in the morning and ate our breakfast before starting our adventure of the day. 

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We went to Dao falls first because it is the farthest among the three falls and it will take 30 minute trek going to falls depending on how fast you walk. lol We are lucky because we are early and we are the first tourist to arrive in the dao waterfalls so you can feel the serenity. 

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Our second destination is Binalayan falls or Hidden Falls. It is called hidden falls because you have to turn left at the last peak of the trek to see it. This waterfall is 10 ft deep and you can jump from the top depending on how brave and adventurous you are while people are cheering you from below. 🙂 Because I have no confidence of doing it, I just jump from the lower portion of the cliff and I would recommend you to at least try it. 

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Our last stop is at Aguinid Falls or the most crowded falls in Samboan. When we arrived in their registration kiosk a lot of people are already waiting for their turn since we arrived at around 11 o’clock in the afternoon. Aguinid offers 8 Levels of waterfalls, but during the orientation, they will only inform you about level 1-5. They will also introduce you to your technical guide during your trek and if you would like to try to go to Level 6,7 and 8 then you will have to give an extra tip to your guide and the guide should be at least two since it’s difficult.

TRAVEL TIPS:

  • Find a motorcycle driver that will bring you to Dao Falls, Binalayan/Hidden Falls and Aguinid Falls
  • Every waterfalls requires you to pay 20php for entrance and 20 for environmental fee a total of 40php for locals and 60php for foreign tourists
  • Bring water and food like boiled egg and sweets because you need energy lol
  • Wear comfortable clothes like rashguards, shorts or leggings and outdoor sandals or shoes (slippers are not recommended)
  • Save your BIKINI at the beach not in the waterfalls, it’s a NO NO if you don’t want people to see your dark side lol
  • Give tip to your guide according to the service you receive lol.
  • Bring waterproof phone case and dry bag

 

 

 

Discover Davao!

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My travel to Davao is always memorable to me because it’s my first DIY travel. Davao may not be the best Island in the Philippines but it is still worth to visit. I’ve always been curious why people dubbed “DAVAO” as the safest place in the Philippines. Davao is located in Mindanao and is the largest city in the Philippines in terms of land area. When we arrive in Davao we were surprised because a lot of military’s are in the Airport and we also pass military when we were heading to Eden. Eden Nature Park which is recommended place to visit when you are in Davao and also good for team building since it has a wide vicinity and activities to offer. The entrance in Eden already includes the sumptuous buffet lunch and this is where you will also get to try the sky swing. However, in our case we were not able to do it because it was raining and they closed it to avoid accident. We also went to People’s Park before going to the peak in Gmall.

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Our visit to Davao would not be complete without going to Samal Island. To go to Samal Island from Davao you need to go to SASA Wharf where you can ride a ferry going to the Island. We already planned to have a day tour in SECDEA Beach Resort to go swimming and try other water sports activity. Their day tour cost 1000 pesos and it already includes a buffet lunch. The resort have two pools for children and for adult about 6 ft deep and you can also swim to their beach. Davao is big but our time is limited so we were not able to go to other places.

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Before we go back to Cebu we drop by China Town and Magsaysay Park to buy Pasalubong and at SM Lanang to eat lunch. My friend and I had always been a fan of Korean Restaurant and so we tried to eat in Bulbogi Brothers. You pay an expensive price but their service sucks, they only have limited side dishes and the prices are sky-high. It’s not even worth it. This is the only regret we had when we visited Davao, so do not eat into this restaurant (just in case). 😀

TRAVEL TIPS:

  • Wear outdoor sandals or shoes when you go to Eden Nature Park
  • Visit Samal Island
  • Stop by People’s Park because it’s free of charge lol
  • Drink at the Peak (Gmall)
  • Choose an early flight in case it will get delayed
  • Eat in Carenderia they have side dish and very cheap lol
  • Visit Roxas night market
  • Eat street food in China Town

 

“slow down and enjoy the view”

How do you want to spend your weekend? Everyone would like to end their weekend differently, whether it involves indoor or outdoor activities to partying and drinking booze all night. In my case, I decide to head to Bantayan Island a well-known tourist destination in Cebu. I never really tried to travel alone because I don’t prefer to travel alone, I need at least a buddy who is a wanderlust like me. We are a group of five this time my friends and I and our Korean managers, the more the merrier and cheaper lol. I am always the planner when I travel and I asked them 3K each for 2 days 1 night escapade that already includes accommodation, Food, Entrances and Transportation. But, I actually returned P275 to each of them so for a weekend well spent in Bantayan it was worth it.

We finished our work at 11PM Friday, ate dinner and decided to take the first trip going to Hagnaya Port in North Bus Terminal that leaves 1:30 in the morning. Sleeping in the bus is not really bad choice if you wanted to avoid traffic and save your time. We arrived in Hagnaya Port at around 6AM and their first boat leaves at 7AM so we had to wait in the Terminal just before sunrise. 

We arrived in Sta. Fe port at around 9AM and we were picked up by Kota Beach Resort driver. After we checked in, we went out to eat BRUNCH at local restaurant that serves letchon manok and liempo. Because it was AMIHAN at that time, the waves are big and it’s dangerous to go swimming in our resort but the beach is very attractive to dive in. Nevertheless, to avoid wasting time we haggle a boat operator to bring us to Virgin Island instead which is 30-45 mins away from our resort. 

Virgin Island has white sand and crystal blue water but be careful there’s always danger in beauty as they say, because it has a number of Jellyfish. Virgin Island is a must when you visit Bantayan but even though it’s a bit expensive. You will have to pay entrance fee and also the cottage but in our case, we decide not to get a cottage since we didn’t bring a lot anyway we just brought food and phones and snorkeling gears and there’s a space where you can just sit comfortably. After swimming in Virgin Island, we decide to rent a bicycle which I would recommend when you are travelling to Bantayan. It’s very common for locals as a mode of transportation getting around the island. We went to Ogtong Cave by bike and went swimming. The water in the cave is very clear, it’s also dark and some part of it is deep so you have to be careful. What I like about this cave is, it doesn’t smell bad jus like other cave that has a lot of bats. After, Ogtong Cave we decide to go back to church because my friend dropped my phone and we had to look for it by going back and forth to Ogtong resort. We tried to call my phone but nobody answers, didn’t even turn off so we’re sure it’s somewhere in the street. When we decide to give up and went back to the resort and rest we decide to go back again to church for one last time where we spent 30 mins asking if they saw a phone. Readers, it’s not iPhone but I can’t afford to buy new phone as good as my S4. Finally, someone called us and asked what we’re looking and then said I picked a phone while ago I’m cleaning I didn’t know how to answer it because I never had a phone like this. My God! It’s my phone. I was very thankful to the lady, and give her a reward in exchange. 


We had our dinner at a local restaurant and it was very delicious. They actually have it in a cheaper price for the food that we order. We had seafood, pork, shake and beer. We also had our island nightlife but because there was no electricity the live band could not perform. We had 1 pitcher of red margarita instead and side dish. *tipsy* *speaking english mode* Can’t fully remember..SLEEP!

DAY 2:

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Because I want to see the sunrise, I get up at 5 in the morning head to beach and made friends with dogs lol. I wanted to attend the mass but we are late so we just lit candles instead. We also went swimming in morning embracing waves like La Union and had BRUNCH again in the resort. Resort food rates is almost the same ass eating outside and it’s very comfortable especially if they accommodate you well. We checked out at 11 in the morning because we need to go back early to avoid bumpy ocean lol. We arrived in Cebu at around 4PM stop by at SM Consolacion to watch Suicide Squad. This is how my weekend ends.

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TIPS:

  • Travel to Bantayan as early as possible to avoid traffic
  • Rent a bicycle when you are in the Island
  • Do not miss Ogtong Cave
  • Visit Virgin Island
  • Visit Kota Beach own sandbar
  • Resort Hopping
  • Eat delicious seafood (more expensive in the city)

Sugary Sweet Negros Occidental

IMG_0557-1Negros Occidental is known as the sugar bowl of the Philippines and no wonder why.

When we arrived in Negros, we pass through a maze of sugar cane especially when you go to Lakawon Island. This beautiful Island is located in Western Visayas which is famous for the city of smiles or commonly known as “Bacolod”.

DAY 1: The Ruins-Silay Heritage House-Campuestohan Highland Resort

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We arrived late because our original flight got cancelled we haggle a taxi driver to bring us first to The Ruins since it’s the closest to the airport. We spent an hour in the ruins taking pictures and discovering how this grand mansion of one family became the “taj mahal” of the Philippines. We had our lunch at Silay afterwards and visited “Balay Negrense” which is known as haunted house in Bacolod. In Silay you will notice that most of their houses are influenced by spanish architectures and it similar to Vigan. Our last stop for the day is Campuestohan Highland Resort, this resort is good for team building because the area is very wide and it offers a lot of activities and it is also good for children.

DAY 2: Sipalay Island Hopping- Tinagong Dagat – Perth Resort

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We woke up at 12 midnight because we had to leave for Sipalay which is 5-6 hours away from Bacolod City. I should say, Sipalay is a hidden paradise of Negros. We arrived in Sipalay at around 6:45AM and we did Island hopping and snorkeling first, visit tinagong dagat and swimming in well-known Perth resort where you can start counting the islands at your back. The scenery is worth your time, your effort and your money.

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DAY 3: Lakawon Island

Woke up at 4 o’clock in the morning and head to North Bus Terminal going to Cadiz. Going to Lakawon Island is quite difficult due to bumpy road and wavy sea. We were one of the first guests to arrive in Lakawon and it was still low tide. The sand in Lakawon Island is fine but due to ongoing development in the resort it is quite messy as of the moment.

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TRAVEL GUIDE/EXPENSES:

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For Sipalay Tour I would highly recommend Kuya Dado +639217865615. He is not only our driver but also our baggage counter, guide and photographer  😆

BORACAY: Exquisitely fine Sand

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing”

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Having two jobs and working 14 hours a day is not as easy as pie. How do I travel with this tight schedule? Simple. I WORK IT OUT.

I wanted to reward myself of working so hard so I decided to travel on my birthday. It was a good timing I had booked my ticket 3 months before my travel date and I got it a very cheap price. I choose to wander in Boracay to answer my question, why it has become one of the best beaches in the Philippines and why a lot of tourist recommend this Island in the west.

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My travel to Boracay was rainy season in the Philippines. My friends and I arrive in Kalibo Airport around 5:30 in the afternoon, under a circumstance of heavy rain. Due to bad weather we arrive in Boracay late at night without electricity and I was hoping to see the sunset the following day but I was unfortunate enough. I have always thought that Boracay like other island is isolated and less crowded however, I was wrong. Boracay is an explicit example of development and I have to admit it’s not as attractive when you are just in the road. All you can see is buildings and establishments not even the shoreline of the famous white beach. Also, the food are extremely expensive just like their McDonald it’s not the same as the price you normally pay in every McDonald in the Philippines but it’s actually more expensive and almost double the price. We decide to eat in Korean restaurant instead order one spicy korean chicken with free side dish and fruits for 750 pesos good for three person. We also brought our left overs to save money for breakfast and no you don’t need to be shy, you paid for it after all. 

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Nevertheless, my entire travel to Boracay Island is something I cannot forget. I get the answer to my questions and I get to experience what other people have always talked about. I walked through the famous white sand and shoreline of Station 1, 2 and 3. We also went to Puka Beach and we tried Paraw Sailing and snorkeling, and lastly swimming in Diniwid beach. Even though I didn’t get to experience the night life because rain keeps pouring every night, it was still worth it.

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TIPS:

  • Do not travel to Boracay during rainy season
  • Walk from quite Diniwid Beach to Station 3
  • Be careful when swimming in Puka beach – hard to identify if shallow or deep
  • Try Paraw Sailing and Snorkeling
  • Eat in Korean restaurant – It’s a lot cheaper than local restaurant

EXPENSES: 4,900/Person includes Airfare for 3 days and 2 nights

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PS: More than 20 shots for a perfect timing :D