Archive for the ‘Wanderlust’ Category

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After our mini trek to the top of Governor’s Island, we made our way to our next destination – Quezon Island, which was named after our late President Manuel Quezon.

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Out of all the other islands, Quezon Island seems to be the busiest. There are large concrete huts all over the island dedicated to all sorts of recreational activities. When we got there, all tables were already occupied mostly by families and we did not even bother fighting for one because we were more interested in swimming rather than just lazing around. We plopped our things under the rock with the Alaminos City sign, and immediately got into the water.

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We swam all the way to that floating gazebo (pictured below) mainly because we had nothing else to do, and also because the water near the shore is a little murky due to more construction still ongoing all over the island. I’m afraid this island will be over crowded and abused in a few years’ time. 😦

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Midway, we realized that we underestimated the distance of the gazebo from the shore. Not wanting to let our efforts go to waste, we pushed through anyway and made it after quite some time (the strong winds didn’t help much either). It was like a private party in the middle of the sea because not many people dared to swim that far off. When we got back to shore, our boatmen led us to where the giant clams were, but no photos because I didn’t have an underwater camera with me that time. Nonetheless, we thoroughly enjoyed the view of the Giant Clams and corals inhabited by a variety of fishes.

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After that long swim, we were quite worn out so we spent some time rolling around the fine white sand, people-watching while trying to get re-energized.

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By this time, we were more than ready for our lunch but our boatmen insisted that we just eat when we get to our next destination – which I will share with you next. 🙂

Edit: LOL scratch that last part. As it turns out, I do not have any photos from the day’s last destination but believe me when I say it’s amazing. We rolled around the beach’s powdery white sand and hiked up a hill just to jump down a large basin of water inside a cave. I swear it was amazing. But no pictures, bummer! 😦

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I had to call in sick for work today because I woke up with an upset stomach. By afternoon, I felt better and got bored so I started playing with a video editor Cris just downloaded for me.

I just want to share with you my first shot at editing a video. I am CRAP at this. I swear I have all these ideas in my head but I just don’t know how to edit stuff to form a clip acceptable enough to share. But with this new app, things just got better. Even a dummy like me was able to do it! Somehow, this is beginning to sound like an ad for that app LOL.

Anyway, after all that yada yada, here it is! Please check it out and let me know your feedback. I would love some constructive criticism 🙂

 

Thanks guys! 🙂

The Hundred Islands National Park in Alaminos Pangasinan is composed of over a hundred islands covering a land area of almost 2,000 hectares. Only three of these islands were developed for tourists namely Governor, Quezon and Children’s Island.

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Governor’s Island was our first stop of the day. We planned to stay for a maximum of 30 minutes as there isn’t much to do in that island anyway – the beach front was too crowded with boats to be conducive for swimming.

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Our boatman said we could climb up Governor Island’s hill to get a view of the surrounding islands. The climb was short and uneventful except for a little patch of overgrown foliage where one could rest from the heat of the sun, or take photos with a nice (green) background.

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Reaching the viewing deck at the top of the hill, we were immediately greeted by a nice view of the Hundred Islands. However, we only stayed there for not even 10 minutes because it got too hot to handle. More groups of people were also getting to the top so we decided to get out of their way after getting our group photo taken. One could only stare at little islands from afar for too long until they begin to look alike anyway.

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The trek down was shorter, thanks to gravity. The steps are high so it could be quite a challenge for some with shorter (cuter) legs. As we got down, more boats were arriving, good thing we got there early.

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Apparently, the infamous Big Brother House is perched in this island but we did not bother checking it out anymore. I heard it could be rented for Phph10,000 per night. I think it could be quite an adventure to stay there even just for the night, but the lack of immediate boat transfer for emergency purposes scares the paranoid in me.

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Borawan is a play on two words – Boracay and Palawan. It’s an island named so because, as some people claim, it has white sand reminiscent of Boracay and rock formations the same as Palawan’s limestone cliffs. If one gets the chance to have the Boracay and Palawan experience in one at a measly price, one grabs it.

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My friends and I boarded a bus bound to Lucena, got off at the Grand Terminal. Got on a mini bus and alighted at the town of Padre Burgos where we got on tricycles that brought us to the port. From there, we rented a boat that would take us to Borawan Beach. Someone gave us a tip that people usually do the Borawan to Dampalitan route so we decided to go against the flow of people and camp out at Dampalitan Island instead.

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Upon arrival to the island, we pitched our tents and settled down for the day.

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In all fairness, Dampalitan Island’s sand could pass up as Boracay’s shores from afar. While the sun is shining its brightest, the white sand seems to glow it almost hurts the eyes.

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After lunch and a quick nap, the water level went down low enough to reveal a little sandbar. We walked on the sandbar and took photos farther out into the sea. That entertained us for about 30 minutes until it got too hot to be enjoyable. We went back under the shade and napped some more while waiting for the sun to go down. When it got a little cooler, we explored the opposite side of the shore and came across some sea friends.

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We watched the sun set and it was beautiful. It was made better by the absence of a big crowd. Guess going against the norm paid off, after all.

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When it got dark, we cooked and had our dinner. We built a fire and drank and danced around it. We also roasted marshmallows for our s’mores. It was a great night. 🙂

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The next day, our boat came by and brought us to Borawan Beach.

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I had to agree that the cliffs do resemble the limestone formations in Palawan albeit being miniature compared to the real thing. When we got to the island, there was a group of rock climbers uhmmmmm climbing the rocks LOLOLOL. We contented ourselves in climbing on top the less intimidating ones and swimming around the clear waters. We didn’t really do much at Borawan Island and I have to say that I liked Dampalitan better.

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Borawan is being marketed better than what it actually is. But if you’re looking for a new beach to explore this summer, it is still worth the try.

Last summer, I was finally able to visit the Hundred Islands in Pangasinan. Along with six other friends from work, we boarded a bus bound for Alaminos and sat through a 5-hour long drive. After a simple silog breakfast at a restaurant near the Public Market, we jumped on a tricyle that would take us to our chosen accommodation – Maxine by The Sea.

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After changing into our swimming clothes, we walked to Lucap Wharf to rent out a boat for our whole day Island Hopping Tour. We chose a Medium Service Boat for Phph1,800 and paid Php20 per head at the Tourist Information Center. While waiting for our boatmen, we saw other boats and tourists getting ready to sail out.

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For this entry, I am not going to talk about our island stops just yet. Instead, I will just share with you some photos I took of the (unidentifiable) islands that we saw while in the middle of the sea.

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I noticed that some of the islets look like mini versions of Coron’s rock formations. Way smaller but beautiful, nonetheless.

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This island looks like a great place to just sunbathe and pass the time. Look at that mound of white, fine sand. It looks so soft and inviting!

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I was getting antsy seeing these islands from afar. I couldn’t wait to dock in one of them, and jump into the clear blue waters.

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I will share our first stop (Governor’s Island) in my next post. I could have condensed our Pangasinan trip into one long post but decided to chop it up into shorter separate posts so you could appreciate their individual beauty. A little anticipation never hurt anyone, right?

Anyone who has ever been to Baguio most probably have already visited Wright Park. It is commonly known as that place in Baguio where one can ride a pink-haired horse.

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It is also well-known for its “pool of pines” which is not meant for swimming but rather a long walkway with a well manicured garden and towering pine trees along its far sides. Unfortunately, the flowers were not in bloom when I visited but the yellow flowers peppering the “pool” were still pretty.

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All over the park are peddlers selling all sorts of local fruits and novelty souvenirs. I passed up on the touristy key chains but the enticing Sagada oranges were too sweet to resist. I got a couple of pieces which I had for breakfast the next day.

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Climbing down more than a hundred stone steps, I came across some elderly Igorots decked in traditional clothing. But I was more interested with these cute kids posing for their parents as they rock them colorful woven garbs. So precious!

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Going further down the stairs, my nose began to twitch at the smell of horse manure. I’m not really into horses so after a few snaps, I moved on.

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The entrance near the horses’ stables is lined with vendors selling succulents and a whole lot of other plants. This is where I went trigger happy and snapped at the lovely flowers on display. I was seriously mulling over buying a few pots but decided against it when I realized that I will have to lug all of them all around. I just contented myself with the photos I took instead.

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To be quite honest, I didn’t find Wright Park too interesting. There really isn’t that much to do aside from riding the horses. However, I still think it is worth a visit if you’re in the area anyway.

Seri Fantasy World is a gallery of 3-dimensional art painted freehand by (apparently) famous Korean artists. Basically, it is full of interactive paintings that gives out a 3D optical illusions when photographed with. I visited the museum a while back with some of my girl friends and I am gonna share with you some of my favorite snaps below.

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Welcome to Seriland!

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Ren posing with the giant mushrooms before we enter the museum

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Giant bear (???) guarding the entrance

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Two modern Filipinas with a Dalagang Pilipina. LOL my captions are ridiculous!

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Lorraine and I tending to our carabaos

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Lorraine catching a falling watermelon while I take a selfie with the vain farmer

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Gotcha!

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Oopsie!!!

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Abby and Lorraine petting a tiny dog

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While I get flown away by a giant eagle

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Falling off the wagon

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Ren helping out a fisherman with his catch

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ROAR!

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Hmmmmm… Abby and I thinking where in the Philippines should we go next

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Peeling off Mona Lisa

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ET phone home

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Waiting for the bus with Forrest Gump

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SHARK!!!

Outside the Trick Eye Museum is a little Bear Museum and a Kid’s Play Area.

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We also checked out the very short Mirror Maze. It was very short, but fun nonetheless.

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We really had a great afternoon at the Seri Fantasy World Trick Eye Museum and I would love to go back again to check out if there are newly installed artworks.