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Monday, May 26, 2014

VISITA IGLESA IN LAGUNA: The Old Churches of Calamba, Bay, Pila, Pagsanjan, Lumbang, Paete and Pakil

At some point in my blogging, I attempted to write about Philippine Churches. They are readily available so they could serve as good subjects for those who are just starting blogging. But I easily grown tired and gave up doing so, perhaps because there's nothing very substantial about it for me. I saw these churches as pieces of bricks and rocks. I marveled at their architecture and longevity but nothing more. This is a reflection of the kind of Catholic I became. I still believe in God but I severed my relationship with God many years ago and I continuously built walls between me and him. 

Until the "shitty" summer of 2014 came.I never though so much could happen in such a short span of time. The good, the bad, the ugly. I am not just talking about the usual stuff like out of towns and travel adventures, more than that, summer of 2014 took me into a journey of life I will never forget. I couldn't go deeper into the details but something tragic happened with my personal life and private relationships. I've been to hell and back. It was my wake up call. I didn't emerge out of it as an angel but at least I am happy I was able to bring back my connection with my God. That for me is a good start.


This year's Holy Week marks my first ever Visita Iglesia. Yeah, it took me 33 years to do so. 

We went to a total of seven (7) Churches in Laguna in towns along the lake starting in Calamba.

1. Calamba -St. John the Baptist Church 
2. Bay--St. Augustine Church
3. Pila--San Antonio de Padua Church of Pila
4. Pagsanjan --Our Lady of Gudalupe Church Pagsanjan 
5. Lumbang --San Sebastian Parish Church
6. Paete --St. James the Apostle Parish
7. Pakil Church --St. Peter of Alcantara Parish Church

Monday, May 19, 2014

#foreversummer in CAPONES ISLAND Zambales

The last stop in this particular trip and something I always look forward to whenever we do the Anawangin-Nagsasa-Capones tour.

So what you do is you
1. start with Anawangin Cove
2. Hop to Nagsasa Cove and camp there overnight, then
3. Drop by Capones the next day

Visit the lighthouse, swim in the beach, then off you go to the mainland and back home in Manila.

So you start with the lighthouse first located at the Western end of the island of Capones. Going ashore is the challenge and actually the fun part as there is no port where boats can dock so what you do is that you have to walk through chest-deep water to reach ashore. The area is rocky and could get slippery so it is best to be careful. The good part is that water is really clear so you can see where you are stepping at. The challenge would be the waves as they could get rough especially during non-summer months that even boats find it hard to hold still and that the boats have to go far ashore while waiting for their passengers so as not to be crushed by the waves to the rocks.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

#foreversummer in NAGSASA COVE Zambales

Nagsasa Cove, though not originally planned, was where we decided to set up tent and stay overnight. Four of our colleagues were never in the area before and so they cannot decide where the best place is to camp. My wife and I told them to see Nagsasa Cove first and decide later on, anyways, it's easy to go back to Anawangin should they like it more. But they loved Nagsasa Cove instantly so that's where we settled finally.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

#foreversummer in ANAWANGIN COVE Zambales

It's mid-may and if you haven't hit the beach yet then what are yoy waiting for? Time to get some tan to make that skin look more healthy. If no flight bookings made is your concern, worry not. 4-hours away waiting for you is Anawangin Cove which is perfect option if you live in Luzon or greater Manila area. Go gather your friends or join organized tours. If you have 2,000 pesos on the budget, you are good to go.

I frequent the area and I never grow tired of it. It was easy for me make an instant plan because other than me pagka-kaladkarin ang mga friends ko, the place is perfect for a weekend-only getaway.


Monday, May 12, 2014

STK (Sugba Tula Kilaw) Foodhouse Tagbilaran: Don't go here unless you have no other choice.

Stuck in your hotel room and you feel like going out for a night life but don't know where to hangout? Get a cab and ask the taxi driver for the hippest place to party, they know. In the same way, if you feel like trying a restaurant downtown but have no idea where to dine, ask the taxi driver and he "probably" knows where to take you. Well, quite true, not all the time though. Coz we did last time we were in Tagbilaran Bohol and we were not satisfied with the food.

Or maybe because we asked for the wrong thing.haha. We told our driver to take us somewhere we can enjoy seafood at a cheap price. We were in Bohol so we thought seafood could be cheap and at the same time good tasting.
STK (Sugba Tula Kilaw) Foodhouse Tagbilaran

Sunday, May 11, 2014

PRAWN FARM RESTAURANT: Best Eat-All-You-Can Seafood Buffet in Tagbilaran

A restaurant in a shopping mall offering eat-all-you-can seafood buffet? Why not! This is Bohol after all. My accommodation on my first day in Tagbilaran located in somewhere in J.A. Clarin Street happens to be near Island City Mall. We were strolling around to look for a place to eat lunch when we saw the seafood buffet offering.

P325.00 nett for adults and P165.00 nett for kids? Why not! Eh kung seafood yan eh di sulit. Maka-isang kilo ka ng hipon eh di bawing bawi na. ^^
Nice, interior. A lot of seats to accommodate diners but it doesn't feel crowded. 
The buffet area is rather simple and there are a few choices. Come to think about it though, for a buffet worth 325 pesos per pax which includes unlimited shrimps, what else can you complain for? Especially because there are other alternatives for those who are not so much into seafood.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

OCEAN SUITES Boutique Hotel Tagbilaran Bohol: Amazing Ocean View of Panglao

Afraid of going to Bohol because of expensive accommodation? It's easy, don't book for a hotel in Panglao, stay in Tagbilaran instead. That's where you can find cheap hostels for as low as 800 pesos a night. You might not have a beach view but the sand is only a few minutes away from the city and could be easily accessed on a day tour. Other than renting a car, bike or joining group tours, there is also the option of taking the jeepney from the central terminal in Tagbilaran to Panglao.

And there's this relatively new hotel in Tagbilaran that is just next to the Blood Compact Monument-- literally. And if you are familiar with this famous landmark, it is situated on the coastal highway facing Panglao Island. Yeah, it is in Tagbilaran City categorically but it has the countryside con mature feel because it is at the outskirt. And it's not just new, it's chick and best of all,I love it!
OCEAN SUITES Boutique Hotel Tagbilaran Bohol
The View, The View !!!

The view is the one to die for. You will be surprised at how small the hotel is---just a few rooms and it looks as if it has only two floor. But they made an amazing job at maximizing the small space. Since it is located on a slope, the architect was able to integrate an underground pool of some sort smacked right at the middle of the hotel with the slope offering an view of the mangroves below, the sea beyond the shoreline and the island of Panglao from afar.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Island Hopping BALICASAG and VIRGIN ISLAND Bohol #BoholSummer2014

First-timers in Bohol? Chances are, you end up

1. Doing land tour which includes the world famous Chocolate Hills and the close encounters with tarsiers, not to mention my favorite, Loboc River Cruise. Or,
2. End up in Alona Beach.

For repeaters, chances are, you will either end up doing #1 or #2 again.

But Bohol is more than just Alona Beach or the Chocolate Hills. Off Panglao are a few small islands worth checking.

Rent a boat for as low as 3,500 php (capacity of up to 6 pax) and you can already hop to Balicasag Island and Virgin Island otherwise known as Pungtod Island.

The last time I was here in 2008, we stayed in Bohol Bee Farm which is just a few minutes away from the bridge connecting Panglao Island to mainlaind Bohol and effectively, Tagbilaran. We intentionally didn't go to Alona Beach which is by far the representative name when you mention Panglao. Beach = Alona = Panglao. For day tour, we went to the Western Side instead in a resort they call Panglao Island Nature Resort. Fast forward 2014 and we again stayed on a resort located West of the island of Panglao.
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