Bui Vien

Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam

Otres Beach

Sihanoukville, Cambodia

Bukit Bintang

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Big Lagoon

El Nido, Palawan

Bangui Windmills

Bangui, Ilocos Norte

Calle Crisologo

Vigan, Ilocos Sur

Filipino-Chinese Pagoda

San Fernando, La Union

Monday, 23 December 2013

2013 Travel Reflections & The People Who Inspired Me To Travel

The year is almost over.. and I can't believe that I have visited 10 Philippine Provinces this year! I have to say I am extremely thankful to the people who encouraged me to travel more.

Puerto Galera was the first place I visited this year. I didn't write something about it due to personal reasons. And yes, as everybody know, Puerto Galera is a party-beach-party kind of stuff-- the nightlife is just simply entertaining!

Baler was the second destination this year. It was our first time to surf & eat at a local buffet called Gerry Shan's. It was also the first time I met Lois Yasay of wearesolesisters.com! She shared a lot of inspiring stories that gave me the urge to travel more. She's my favorite blogger!

The next month, I went to La Union alone and had a short trip to Vigan, Ilocos Sur (the bus ride from La Union to Vigan was longer compared to my stay in Vigan). It was my first time to stay in a hostel. I will never forget the locals that I've met. They were very helpful and accommodating.. and I kept on coming back because of them!

April was my birthday month. To celebrate, we went to Palawan and spent a day traveling from one island to another. It was tiresome, but on the other hand, it also made me appreciate the beauty of Philippines even more. 

May was a family month for me. I spent so much time beach bumming with Jm, my cousins and family in Subic. Jm and I also went to La Union because I badly missed surfing and hanging out with the locals. I would never forget the stories that Lois shared over coffee.

June was some sort of a religious retreat for me. We got the chance to visit Lucban, Quezon and do some rest and relaxation at a resort called, Batis Aramin. Then, we visited Kamay Ni Hesus to thank Him for the blessings and opportunities he had given us.

In August, we traveled around Ilocos and tried some local food. Kapuluan Vista Resort in Blue Lagoon is extraordinary. The dorm-type room seemed interesting, the staff are polite and friendly, and the place itself is very serene. Calle Crisologo in Vigan, Ilocos Sur is my favorite-- it has always been romantic and special.

September is a not-so-good time to go to Boracay because of the gloomy weather but we pushed ourselves to travel 6 hours from Iloilo to get to the famous tourist spot. It was my first time to drive a motor -- uphill and downhill! I considered it as one of the "toughest" challenge because I wasn't really a good driver. Anyway, despite of the gloomy weather, we still had fun beach bumming, partying and diving! 

November was the celebration of our 2nd Anniversary. We originally planned to go to Surigao (we had booked a one-way ticket) but because of my "joblessness" status, we cancelled our plan and decided to go back to Baler instead. It was a blessing, actually, because I met James Betia of journeyingjames.com! This kick-ass traveler just completed my year! 

2013 was a very wonderful time for me. I may not have visited SOME of the places I planned to visit, I won't really worry a lot, because there's still 2014! I am planning to visit Calaguas (via journeyingjamestour, hopefully) and Mt. Pulag next year. Right now, I'm trying to save for Malaysia (January) and Indonesia (October) next year.. and maybe, Thailand

The "Donate For Indonesia" Piggy Bank

I've been wanting and hoping to visit Indonesia the soonest time next year. However, I make it a point that I'm financially, mentally, and physically well-prepared. I'm not good in saving money in the bank, because I find it hard to control the "impulse-shopper" in me. So, as a result, I tried to save-- the traditional way-- through a piggy bank. I'll make this piggy-bank-thingy work!

FOR THE MEANTIME (while I take a rest & concentrate on my work),