Monday, December 1, 2014

88 hot spring resort

I am happiest when I travel with my family...

Family is very very important to me. I loved them so much. They've been there during the darkest days of my life, loving me even when i wasn't lovable. Nothing and no one else will give you that. Not your boss, not your friends, not money, not fame.

I can't promise to be there for the rest of their life  but I promise to be there for the rest of mine... 

Regardless of your relationship with your parents, sibling, aunts, cousin or friends you will surely miss them when they are gone from your life, and one day they will. No matter how much time you spend with some one you cared about it will seem that you haven't had enough time together. I don't want to learn that lesson the hard way. I want to stay close to them and what's going on with their lives. And if I could, I want to travel with them as much as possible.

We are facing difficult trial these days ,  my father might loose his eyesight in the near future. But we are keeping the faith. Nothing is impossible because faith can move mountains.

Our parents are who they are for a reason and we must love them unconditionally. No matter how many mistakes they have made, no matter how many you have made, no matter how much they have wronged you, or how much you have wronged each other. Because to them you have life, and because of you they have given up theirs.

For an updated rates of 88 hot spring resort you can visit their website HERE

We paid 600 pesos each for a day tour.
Since the food here is super expensive we opted to eat at Chowking Los Banos before entering the resort.
Food is not allowed inside the resort but you have an option to bring your food and eat at the parking area for cheaper option.
This resort is own by korean  so expects tons and tons of Korean people.
This place is also very good to people with skin diseases, asthma, high blood pressure etc.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

All Smiles in Batanes ( Accommodation, food and budget)

Batanes Itinerary : 4  days and 3 night.

There are three organized tours in Batanes, the North  BatanSabtang Island and the South Batan so  4d3n is enough to see all the tourist spot in Batanes. I suggest the north Batan first  but if you only have 3 days to spare, you can combine the north and south Batan in one day as long as you start earlier.


Lunis (Local adobo)


The famous coconut crab

These are the food that we ate during our Sabtang Island tour and we paid 500 pesos each for group of four. 

Food is a bit pricier in Batanes and eating in fancy restaurant requires you to  make a reservation first. The standard cost of food here is 300 pesos per person . We tried to order halo-halo in a restaurant  near the town but the seller told us that ingredients wasn't available at the time. The next day, we went to Casa Napoli for try some pizza but the personnel  told us that all their employees are sick at the time:(. Food is a little bit challenge in Batanes during low season.

Marfel Lodge (Annex)

One of the highlight of my trip to Batanes is my stay at Marfel lodge. If you are a budget conscious like me, this is the place to go.  They have five rooms and you have an option not to use the air con. The rate for non-aircon is 700 pesos per room (350 pesos per person) and 1200 for air conditioned room ( 600 per person) The living room nice with flat screen and tv, a common bathroom and a kitchen which you can use for free. 

They also offers bike rentals, massage , free wifi and they can also arrange tour for you ( rate is standard by the way) But the best part is their mini honesty store where you can buy and cook your own food. Cooking is free of charge.

The owner of Marfel lodge which we fondly call Ate Fe was really nice and accommodating, actually all  her personnel were really really nice. I felt at ease talking to them. We also met our two travel bodies here. You can contact Ate Fe at 0908.8931.475


My favorite guide in Batanes is Kuya Michael of Sabtang Island (0918.437.0551) He was kind, friendly and accommodating. He made our Sabtang Island tour a memorable one. I highly recommend for you to just ask Ate Fe (0908.8931.475) for a tricycle tour guide, she will recommend the good ones.  For bigger groups, its better to hire a van.  Ate Fe can also arrange that one for you. 

Kuya Michael-wearing the yellow hat. 

There are still many reason to go  back to Batanes. First, I was hoping to finally visit Itbayat Island ,then have a lunch or dinner at Fundacion Pacita. We had a reservation there but we had to cancel it the last minute:(

One advantage of having your own guide and not joining  group tours is that you follow your own pace and time is not limited. While we were at the beach, we found these group of Kapatid (I'm an Iglesia ni Cristo member) and they invited us to join their picnic and swim with them.

Standard rate for Tricycle tour (Good for 2 pax)
North tour- 1000 pesos per tricycle
South tour - 1500 pesos per tricycle
Sabtang island - 800 pesos per tricycle- 75 per person for the boat ride/ and 400 pesos for round trip tricycle from your hotel to the port.
Note: We had two joiners for our Sabtang Island and we opted for a van instead (2000 pesos good for four person.)
I also scored a round trip airfare for 2300 pesos (Regular airfare is 6000 pesos one way)

So how much did I spend on this trip?
7800 all in with airfare
Take note that I bought pasalubong for 1200 pesos and i rented the tricycle all by myself during South Batan Tour.
It's a little bit pricey but you can still lower the cost depend on the food that you are going to eat.

I hope that  this post will will inspire to just go and travel, to follow your dream and live your life. Do what makes you happy and live with the moment. Follow your bliss.

She was beautiful, but not like those girls in the magazine. She was beautiful for the way she thought. She was beautiful, for the sparkle in her eyes when she talked about something she loved. She was beautiful, for her ability to make other people smile, even if she was sad. No she wasn't beautiful for something as temporary as her looks. She was beautiful,  deep down to her soul. She is beautiful...

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Surreal Batanes (South Batan)

 We had a chanced to chat to a police woman from Sabtang island and we jokingly asked her how much will it cost to buy a piece of land in Batanes. She smiled widely and told us to find an Ivatan boyfriend first. We were taken a back and she explained that its part of their culture not to allow an outsider to own a land there unless you marry an Ivatan.

Maybe that's the reason why Batanes is still well preserve, rustic, raw and real. I felt i was back in time 50 years ago.  There is no modern structure blocking the view. The people are warm, happy and simple. 

There is some kind of innocence in being human- in not having  to be just happy or just sad- in the nature of being able  to be both broken  and whole , at the same time...

Writing this blog post makes me ache for Batanes again. I missed the feeling of isolation, far from the noise of concrete jungle in the metro. In Batanes, you can close your eyes and feel the fresh air, hear the laughter of innocent children and say to your self that this is all worth it! The long travel time, the flight delays and nearly cancellation, the fear of coming storms, it all worth it.

No matter what happens, always keep your child-like innocence. it is the most important thing

The ruins of songsong-  it is known as ghost town in Batanes. abandoned 40 years ago due to tidal wave. Always respect the mother nature because she has the power to please and the power to destroy

To be human is to be broken and broken is its kind of beautiful...

Batanes is a dream come true for me and I hope one day you find yourself here too...