Monday, August 31, 2009

Kabatian Island - A Wavy Welcome

It was rather peaceful in Labrador when we depart on a boat but halfway on our trip, the sea became uneasy and rowdy that a supposed 30-minute boat ride turned into more than an hour of wavy ride. And when we arrived at Kabatian Island in Sual, Pangasinan, the waves have become bigger that the first thing on my comrades mind were "How do we go back?".

Friday, August 28, 2009

The Somber Mood of Tobuan Beach

The province of Pangasinan being a coastal one is gifted with lots of easy to reach beaches. Tobuan Beach located in the barangay of the same name in Labrador is one of them. This beach is well known in the area because of its fine, dark-gray colored sand which span for about a kilometer. However, if swimming amidst dark sand is not your thing you can still chill around the area and watch the sunrise which is one of the trademarks of Pangasinan. Or better yet, after swimming in the sea, you can immense yourself at the pools of the nearby Covelandia du Labrador Family Beach Resort where we stayed overnight.

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Colonial-Era Manila Experience

Ever wondered how the rich and the famous lived in the colonial-era? I just had a sampling of that when I visited the Legarda Mansion in the patrician district of San Miguel, Manila. This well-preserved mansion is the ancestral home of Dr. Alejandro and Ramona Legarda and showcases age-old furniture and fixtures as well as priced paintings, vases and wares. This place is like a mini-museum where heirlooms of the family who used to live there were displayed... from the photography gadgets, medical equipments to the wedding dress of one of the mansion's daughter.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Once Mighty Intramuros

Behind these walls lies a golden past. A city of the elite - the premiere place of Asia once stood there almost three-quarters of a century ago. But then again, war took its toll on this place and turn it to ruins - it has never recovered since. Almost everything but the Walls were destroyed during the War. And walking in Intramuros now will remind you of the past, although almost every structures there were mere duplications of what they used to be. Still, this place represents the heart of Manila - chaotic, reviving and struggling.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Walls of Intramuros

The City of Manila was once grand and Intramuros was the symbol of aristocracy. From its founding in 1571, it was the exclusive creation of the Spanish ruling class. Within its walls were important government buildings, first-class homes, churches, convents, hospitals, schools and plazas.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Backpacking West Bataan Part 3

On this last part of this backpacking trip, let me tell you how to go there and enjoy the experience.

The meeting place or jump-off point of the tour is Balanga City, the capital of Bataan. There are hourly aircon buses that depart from Cubao like Victory Liner and Bataan Transit. Then, you need to ride a non-aircon bus in the Balanga Terminal heading to Bagac. You may opt to unload at the Bagac town proper or in the Japanese Commemorative tower where tricycles await. You need to rent a tricycle that will lead you to a highway going to Sitio Looc. You need to trek for about 30 minutes amidst forests and mini-streams towards Sitio Looc here you cud rest for a while. Sitio Looc will be the last place there where electricity is available. Then you need another 30 minute uphill trek to Paitan Cove. This is a good place to pitch your tent because the beach here is fine and that there is a mini-falls where fresh-water is available. Since the weather ain't that fine, we decided to camp there before trekking any further. We then wade amidst stones and rocks going to Caragman. But if it is high-tide, trekking further up on the hillside is advisable.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Backpacking West Bataan Part 2

Bagac and Morong are both 4th class municipalities in the western part of Bataan. Bagac was made famous recently by a prime-time GMA show, Zorro, which was shot on location in Real de Acuzar. Morong, on the other hand is where the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant is located. It is also a sanctuary of marine turtles or pawikan. Other than that, this part of Bataan has become a favorite trekking and camping place for adventurers out there. For one, the locals in the area are hospitable and welcoming. Second, the trail isn't that arduous that even novice trekkers and climbers can do it. And most of all, the place is a showcase of pristine coastal and marine marvels.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Backpacking West Bataan Part 1

This is the first of a three part-post of my backpacking adventure in West Bataan. Two of my friends who reside in Balanga City invited me and few others on a trek amidst the mountain and beach scape of the western part of Bataan that include Bagac and Morong. It was a two-day trek that include camping in one of Bagac's scenic coves. Although, it is already rainy season, the thought of spending another few day in nature is just too irresistable. So, with my backpack and tent in tow, I headed to Balanga City which is the meeting place for the trek.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Revisiting Children's Island

I always wonder why they name this island after the children. The best answer I got is that the beach of this island is so shallow that it serves as a safe playground for the children to swim. I do agree. In fact, one can even go by foot from this island to a small islet just in front of it. The sand here is so fine and the waters so clear even if you wade just a little too far from the island.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Revisiting Quezon Island

Quezon Island is one of the main three islands of the Hundred Islands that every visitors come to. In fact, this is the island which is the most developed. It has at least two halls where tables can be rented and it has several stores where chips and drinks are sold (of course, at a very high cost).

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Revisiting Governor's Island

I am back at this place sooner than I thought. But hey, I am not complaining. This will be my third trip to the Hundred Islands in two years and this time, I accompanied some friends who will set foot in the islands for the first time.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Thank You President Cory

The mother of modern Philippine democracy died today. Thank You President Corazon Cojuangco Aquino. May you Rest In Peace!!! We will never forget you.

Philipppine's 11th President famous for Yellow

A Devout Christian and an Icon of Democracy

Time Magazine's Woman of the Year

Almighty God, most merciful Father
You alone know the time
You alone know the hour
You alone know the moment
When I shall breathe my last.

So, remind me each day, most loving Father
To be the best that I can be.
To be humble, to be kind,
To be patient, to be true.
To embrace what is good,
To reject what is evil,
To adore only You.

When the final moment does come
Let not my loved ones grieve for long.
Let them comfort each other
And let them know how much happiness
They brought into my life.
Let them pray for me,
As I will continue to pray for them,
Hoping that they will always pray for each other.

Let them know that they made possible
Whatever good I offered to our world.
And let them realize that our separation
Is just for a short while
As we prepare for our reunion in eternity.

Our Father in heaven,
You alone are my hope.
You alone are my salvation.
Thank you for your unconditional love, Amen.

- Pres. Cory Aquino (1933-2009)

Note: All photos taken at Kalayaan Hall in Malacanan Palace.