DAY 1 of 7 Days 6 Nights in Japan : Osaka Castle, Dotonbori and Namba District

Konnichiwa! (Hello/Good day!) Ogenki desu ka? (How are you?)🙂

Hello everyone! I’m baaaaacccckkk!😀 Before reading my DAY 1 itinerary, I hope you have read already my Japan Travel Guide. Check my previous post here. ;)


Our departure time to Osaka via Jetstar was at  7 o’clock in the morning. We arrived at NAIA Terminal 1 around 4am then we immediately paid P1,650 for travel tax. There weren’t too many passengers that time so we only spent few minutes for immigration clearance and had more time for breakfast! HAHAHA

Our flight was not delayed so we arrived at Kansai International Airport (KIA) on time. So unusual, yeyyy!😀


Just like in Incheon Airport, KIA has a train from the boarding gates to the main building. We had a fast clearance in Immigration and Customs and their officers are not that scary. LOL


Time to fill up our tummy!😀 It’s always a part of my itinerary to try either KFC or McDonalds in every country I get to visit because I love comparing their food and trying something that’s not being offered in our country. In Japan, we tried McDo!🙂 BUT… I don’t like their fries! huhuhu I spent  450 yen (P207) for this meal.


Our AirBnB room is located in Namba so we took Nankai Airport Express which costs 920 yen (P423) to Namba Station for a 50-minute travel time.

Our check-in time was at 6 o’clock in the evening because we needed to wait for our host to finish her work that day. Good thing she suggested Namba Hands-Free Center. It is where you can leave your luggage for a corresponding fee. This is located near Namba station and Namba Park. It’s on the fourth floor of Hotel Ichiei. I paid 500 yen (P230) for my big trolley bag and 200 yen (P92) for my backpack.

After leaving our luggage, we went to Osaka Castle.

Subway Midosuji Line (Red Line) at Namba Station (M20) → Hommachi Station (M18) → transfer to Subway Chuo Line (Green Line) → Tanimachi 4-chome Station (C18). Total Fare: 240 yen (P110).

From Tanimachi 4-Chome Station, take Exit No. 1-B and walk for about 10 minutes before reaching the gate of the castle. You know you’re on the right track when you see these landmarks below.😀

Few more steps before the gate….


This is the GATE! hahaha


From here, you still need to walk for almost five minutes before reaching the castle. There are different food stalls inside.

Entrance Fee to Osaka Castle: 600 yen (P276)


Inside the castle is a museum but you can’t take pictures in a certain floor. ( I forgot if it was the 2nd or 4th  hahaha)

There is an observation deck in the topmost floor of the castle tower which offers a beautiful panoramic view of Osaka.


One amazing thing I found in this place is the Osaka Castle souvenir coin machine located at the ground floor.😀

Step 1: Choose between gold or silver coin for 500 yen (P230)

Step 2: Choose between necklace chain or key chain for 200 yen (P92) (Optional)

Step 3: Engrave your name (or your lover’s name if you’re very sure s/he is the ONE already ‘coz maybe s/he has another ONE or TWO? y’know! lol) at the back of the coin for 30 yen (P14) This is a fixed rate regardless of the length of your name.

Time for some ice cream!🙂 This tastes a little ordinary but it was kinda big. Well it should be big, it’s so pricey! hahaha 400 yen (P184) Gosh.


We stayed for only few minutes in Osaka Castle, upon exit you will see this fountain above. From here, just walk for maybe 5 minutes before reaching the nearest station. Fare to Namba Station: 240 yen (P110).

After claiming our luggage at Namba Hands-Free Center, we directly went to our AirBnB room which is located beside Rise Motomachi Animal Hospital. We walked for almost twenty minutes. Whew!!!! I don’t really recommend the place. HAHAHA

We took a rest for just an hour then went to Dotonbori for dinner!!!🙂 Dotonbori is one of Osaka’s most popular tourist destinations because of its many shops and restaurants. This is the perfect place in Osaka for those tourists who want to experience “Kuidaore” which means “To ruin oneself by extravagance in food” or simply “Eat till you drop!” This is also where you can find the iconic Glico Man.


Takuyaki with egg- 550 yen (P253)  for 6 pcs

Okonomiyaki – 1,000 yen  (P460)

This was our only dinner because everything was very pricey. HAHAHA And also, we were very tired already so we all decided to just go home and sleep. LOL

That’s all for now tomodachi!😉 DAY 2 will be posted sooooon! :*



Japan Travel Guide

Japan has been every Filipino’s dream travel destination in Asia. And I think I don’t need to explain why. LOL. Honestly, I’m just feeling a bit lazy now so let’s just get straight to the point, shall we? HAHAHA

AIRLINE. There are a lot of airlines that offer direct flights from Philippines to Japan. And since thousands of Japanese visit our country every year, the flights are not limited to their capital city which is Tokyo. Some airlines offer flights to Osaka, Nagoya or Fukuoka and some of these flights are departing from Cebu or Davao. There are two airports in Tokyo: Haneda and Narita. Haneda International Airport is located closer to central Tokyo than Narita International Airport. To check the flight schedules for every airline, just click the icons below.🙂










Among these airlines, the cheapest one is Jetstar. I learned about their promo when I attended Travel Tour Expo 2016 last February at SMX Convention Center, Pasay City. I’ve been attending this kind of event since 2013 and I find it really helpful for a budget traveler like me, trust me! HAHAHA To know more about this annual event, you may check my previous post here.  It was my first time to try Jetstar and their online booking system is the easiest one for me. You can easily check for an alternative date with the same or cheaper price.


Yes, that price in the photo above is in pesos. One way ticket to Japan can be as cheap as P1,998 ONLY!!! However, Jetstar is very strict with their hand luggage (carry-on baggage). They strictly follow the 7kg rule (14kg in business class) and that includes your handbag and other personal items such as your gadgets.

VISA APPLICATION. Unlike applying for South Korea, applying for Japan is through their accredited agencies only; one cannot apply directly to Japan Embassy except for diplomatic or official visa. The following are the accredited travel agencies:

Based on my brain-squeezing research (chos! haha), UHI is the best one. And I was riggghhhttt!🙂 I consulted first my requirements through their email address and they responded on the same day. I submitted my requirements in their office on the 19th of July and got a text and email that my passport was already ready for pick-up on the 22nd. That fast, amazing!😀 UHI has two offices: Makati and Cebu. Their office in Makati is located at Mezzanine Floor, Dusit Thani Hotel. It is just beside SM Makati and the nearest train station is MRT Ayala. While their office in Cebu is located at 2nd Level JY Square Discovery Mall, 1 Salinas Drive, Lahug. By the way, you can send your application and documents via courier if you’re not from Metro Manila or Cebu. Just check their website for more details.🙂

There are different requirements for each type of applicant, you may check the complete list here. But I will only focus on the requirements for a tourist without any family or relative or guarantor in Japan.

  • Philippine passport (more than six months valid with at least two blank pages)
  • Visa application form (download the form here)
  • Photo (4.5cm x 4.5cm with white background)
  • Birth Certificate (issued within one year)
  • Marriage Contract (if the applicant is married, also issued within one year)
  • Daily Schedule in Japan (see sample below)
  • Bank Certificate
  • Income Tax Return (Form 2316) original and photocopy
  • Visa application payment of P950 to P1,500 depending on the travel agency.

japan schedule photo

OSAKA, KYOTO AND TOKYO. Osaka is Japan’s second largest metropolitan area after Tokyo. Some tourists prefer this city than Tokyo because of the famous The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Universal Studios Japan. For a complete list of tourist spots and travel guide to Osaka, you may check this page. On the other hand, if you want to see countless temples, shrines and other historically priceless structures, include Kyoto in your itinerary. This city is just an hour away from Osaka but one day is not enough to visit Kyoto; an overnight stay is recommended.🙂 For Kyoto travel guide, visit this page.  Lastly, if you want unlimited choice of shopping, entertainment, anime and dining, Tokyo is undoubtedly the best city for that. There are a lot of amazing things in Tokyo and it’s really a beautiful and  peaceful city. And also, this is where Disneyland and Disney Sea are located. Tokyo is six hours away from Osaka if you will take the regular train and only two hours if you wanna try the very expensive bullet train or Shinkansen . That’s the reason why some tourists only visit Osaka and some only visit Tokyo. But in our case, we visited both because it’s more pricey to have another Japan tour. HAHAHA And we really really wanted to try their bullet train!🙂

JR PASS. Japan Rail Pass is the most economical means of travelling throughout Japan by rail. It is valid for reserved and non-reserved ordinary car travel on all Japan Railways (JR) Group Shinkansen “bullet trains” (except for the “Nozomi” and “Mizuho” services), limited express trains, express trains, and local trains (Green Car passes are valid for Green Car travel) and the BRT (Bus Rapid Transit system). But then, you cannot buy this pass within Japan. You must purchase first a voucher from an accredited agency here in the Philippines and exchange it with an actual pass when you arrive in Japan. But I’ve read in the Facebook page of The Japan Times that it will be available within Japan very soon. The 7-day validity pass costs P13,200. We weren’t able to buy our JR passes before we left Manila and ’twas a good thing because our total transportation expense within Japan was only around P10,000 which already includes Shinkansen (P6,150). So that’s around P3,000 cheaper!😀 But it’s more convenient to use JR pass since you no longer need to buy tickets in every station and do the Math every now and then. HAHAHA

jr pass

TRANSPORTATION. “A developed country is not a place where the poor have cars. It’s where the rich use public transportation” by Gustavo Petro.  Japan, so far, has the best transportation system I’ve been to. You can see a lot of businessmen and rich people who take the public transport particularly the train. There are more than a thousand of train stations in Japan and every city railway map looks very complicated. Posted below are the railway maps of Osaka and Tokyo.

Told yah! You’d surely get totally confused on your first try of finding the station you’re looking for. HAHAHA But like I said before, worry no more, train mobile apps will be your savior!😉  Hyperdia is one of the famous train app in Japan. I also recommend Osaka and Tokyo apps by Mapway.

But during our trip, Google Maps was more useful.🙂


Bicycles are widely used in Japan; you can see a lot of cyclists and bicycle parking racks everywhere. We forgot to look for their amazing underground parking system like the one in this video.😦 Anyway, a friendly reminder: always be alert while walking in the street because some of them don’t blow their horn. I was almost hit for more than ten times already. HAHAHA

TIME. UTC/GMT +9 hours. Japan is 1 hour ahead of Philippines.

SEASONS. Spring: March to May; Summer: June to August; Autumn: September to November; Winter: December to February. But the most famous season is the Cherry Blossom season!😀 This starts from early March to late April. Below is the Cherry Blossom Map for 2016.

cherry blossom map.jpg

ACCOMMODATIONWe booked our rooms both in Osaka and Tokyo via AirBnb. You can download their app or use their website to rent unique accommodations from local hosts. AirBnb provides great choices and with it, you can really feel at home anywhere in the world. If you will go to Osaka, I suggest you look for a room in Namba district. This is regarded as the center of Osaka. And if you will just stay within Tokyo, the best place would be Shibuya.  However, the room we booked for in Tokyo was in Itabashi-Ku which is a bit far from the center. But I still recommend it since the local host named Niki was very friendly and helpful. Her unit is clean and comfy. Both of these rooms have free Wi-Fi and toiletries. But our stay in Niki’s place was way better than in Osaka.😀 I’ll share the whole story on my next post. HAHAHA

Our local host for Namba, Osaka was Noriko, you can check her AirBnb profile here. 

While in Itabashi-Ku, Tokyo, our local host was Niki. She’s a Vietnamese who currently works in Japan. Check her AirBnb profile here. 


LANGUAGE. Most of them can speak and understand English. But still, you need to prepare your translation apps.🙂 In our group, I was the one assigned for this. I mean, for communicating with those Japanese who can’t understand English. HAHAHA (One was assigned for route planning or transportation and the other one was for photography. That’s actually a travel tip! Assign roles to your travel buddies! :D) I actually had fun using their language and it was so fulfilling whenever they understand everything I was saying. haha I started learning their language when I was still 15 years old but up to now, I only know the basic. LOL

JAPANESE YEN. One (1) Japanese Yen equals .45 Philippine Peso. Your Philippine pesos would be of greater value if you convert it beforehand in the Philippines than in Japan. Japan is an expensive country. You should definitely double your budget. HAHAHA We lost weight during our tour because of their expensive drinks, meals and fares. Actually, almost everything is expensive! hahaha Well, if you’re rich, forget about what I said. LOL

ELECTRICAL PLUGS OR SOCKETS. They are using types A and B. Type A is a two flat identical sized parallel prongs while type B is a two flat parallel prongs and a grounding pin.  In the Philippines, we also use Type A so you no longer need to bring an adaptor.🙂

WI-FI. We expected for many free Wi-Fi access points in Japan but only find few ones. We just found some in convenience stores and cafes and you need to “Log-in with your Facebook account” when prompted with log-in options. It’s a good thing though so we can fully enjoy the city and just surf the net before hitting the hay.🙂

TOURIST GUIDES or MAPS. These can be found in every train station. In the airport, there are only few ones being displayed in the Tourist or Information Desk.

VENDING MACHINES. There are thousands of vending machines in Japan. Like every 10 or 15 meters, there is a vending machine and I’m not even kidding! Really amazing. HAHAHA I believe it’s because Japanese love walking and biking and their summer is hotter than ours so they need to stay well hydrated. By the way, they love flavored and sparkling water. It was only on my fourth attempt that I was able to buy a natural drinking water. LOL  And this one below is my favorite flavored water!!! This one is so hard to find. Only 1 out of 20 vending machines offers this drink and I wasn’t able to find this in convenience stores.  This sounds like an exaggeration but to taste is to agree! HAHAHA

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SELF-SERVICE. “Self-service” culture of Japan is truly remarkable especially in restaurants, parking areas, gas stations, laundry stations and some grocery stores.

Whew! This post is already the longest one I think. HAHAHA Spent almost three hours for this, time to sleep!😀

That’s all for now sweeties!🙂  I will just update this if ever I forgot something to be included here.😀 If you have any comments or questions, feel free to contact me!😉 I will share my 7 Days 6 Nights Itinerary in Japan on my next posts!🙂Domo Arigato!😉




Discover the breathtaking view of Batanes for P10,000 All-In (5 Days 4 Nights)

If you don’t love reading, here’s my nakakahilong travel video in Batanes.🙂 Just click this.

Batanes has been on my bucket list even before it was featured on a local blockbuster movie. I’ve been wanting to visit this place since 2012, however, my big problem has been the plane ticket. It’s a bit difficult to look for the cheapest fare since their flights are limited. There are only two airlines that offer direct flight to Batanes from Manila and these are Philippine Airlines and Skyjet. Regular fare starts from P7,000 to P10,000 for one way. But luckily, I was able to avail the promo of Skyjet last May 16, 2016. This offer was exclusive for walk-in customers in their office at Aseana, Macapagal. I bought my two-way ticket for P3,996 ONLY! Yeyyy! For tips on how to catch the cheapest airline ticket, please check my old post here.

Skyjet offers one flight per day to and from Batanes except Tuesdays and Thursdays. While Philippine Airlines also offers only one flight per day but daily. Both airlines offer only morning flights to and from Batanes with ETD (Estimated Time of Departure) around 7 or 8 o’clock.

The best time to visit Batanes is from the months of February to June since they usually experience typhoon from July to December. At first, we were kinda nervous about the weather on our chosen dates but because of Accuweather, one of my favorite travel apps, we became confident it would be a sunny week. Accuweather provides weather predictions on different cities all over the world.


Skyjet operates at NAIA Terminal 4 so we didn’t need to come early since it is a small airport. We took our breakfast at Seattle’s Best coffee shop located inside the boarding area. We then left Manila earlier than the departure time. Kudos Skyjet! 🙂  And also, thanks for the free water and fudgee bar. hahaha😀




I always do DIY (Do-It-Yourself) travels but because my companions wanted a hassle-free travel, we availed a tour package by BISUMI Tour and Services. ‘Twas a good thing I was convinced because it was verrrryyy hot in Batanes that time so the van provided by Bisumi was a good relief after every skin-roasting tour. HAHAHA By the way, if ever you’ll be asked by BISUMI (thru their feedback form) on how did you learn about their agency, I’d appreciate it if you’ll write “” HAHAHA LOL

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The rate per person for the package we availed is P5, 900. This is a 3D2N (3 Days 2 Nights) tour in Batan North, Batan South & Sabtang Island which is inclusive of all government fees and permits, tour guide services, A/C Van for the tours and transfers, round trip boat rides to Sabtang, lunch and refreshments and dinner (Sabtang Island only).

DAY 1 North Batan Tour (Afternoon)

  • Lunch at Vunong Dinette
  • Boulder Beach in Chanpan Valugan
  • WWII Japanese Hideout/Tunnel
  • Basco Idjang Viewing
  • PAGASA “Tukon” Radar Station
  • Tukon Church (Mt. Carmel Chapel)
  • Vayang Rolling Hills
  • Lighthouse in Naidi Hills
  • Our Lady of Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral
















  • Travel to San Vicente Port and/or Radiwan Port in Ivana
  • Malakdang Lighthouse
  • Sinakan Stone Houses
  • Brgy. Savidug Stone Houses
  • Sto. Thomas Chapel
  • Savidug Idjang Viewing
  • Refreshments at Chamantad-Tinyan Viewpoint
  • Brgy. Chavayan Stone Houses
  • Souvenir Shopping/Picture taking (Ivatan headgears)
  • Sabtang Weavers Association
  • Sta. Rosa De Lima Chapel




















DAY 3 South Batan Tour 

  • Walking tour at Paderes Point and Cliff Road
  • Chawa Viewing Deck
  • Mahatao Boat Shelter Port
  • Mahatao Town Tour
  • San Carlos Borromeo Church
  • Blank Book Archive
  • Mahatao Spanish Lighthouse
  • Mahatao Tayid Lighthouse
  • Lo-Ran Old Naval Base
  • Our Lady of Miraculous Medal in Itbud
  • San Antonino de Florencia Church in Uyugan
  • Honesty Store
  • San Jose de Ivana Church and Ruins
  • House of Dakay and Old Spanish Bridge



“Blow Ur Horn” signs are almost everywhere






Blank Book Archive where you can write your Batanes experience or memories.






For Day 4, we just slept the whole morning. HAHAHA In the afternoon, we bought souvenirs at BISUMI souvenir shop. I highly recommend this shop because they have unique and beautiful designs for shirts (cotton or dri-fit, P180-P250), ref magnets, wallets, bags and etc. Around 4 pm , we decided to go the Fountain of youth but were not able to do so because it closes at 5 pm. Sad. We just then went to the White Beach instead. The sand is not that white though, the beach is full of corals (so ouchy to the feet LOL), and I don’t recommend this for your kids because some areas that don’t have corals are deep. I suggest you go biking.🙂 Some hotels offer free rent for bicycles while there are stores that charge P25 each for unlimited use. If you have your license, you can also rent a motor.


Triple M Homestay is very near to the airport. The terminal fee is P100. Our flight back to Batanes is 7:45am. This has been the saddest part of my every getaway- flying back to Manila. Haaaay. But I will surely come back for you my dear Batanes!!!🙂 For a prenup shoot perhaps? HAHAHAHAHA


We stayed at Triple M Homestay (Marfel Lodge extension) during our stay at Batan. We met Miss Marfel on our first day stay and she was very accommodating and friendly. The rate per person is P400 (fan room) or P600 (A/C) with a common bathroom. We only used stand fans on our first day and A/C on our third and fourth day. We only paid P200 each on our second day since we didn’t sleep there, we just left some of our bags in our room. You can cook in their kitchen and buy snacks or food at their honesty store. One thing I really love about Batanes is its people. They’re very honest and trustworthy. Other motor owners even leave the keys in their motors outside their house. When you rent a bicycle, you don’t need to leave an id or something as a security deposit. I bet Honesto is from Batanes. Harhar.


Our stay in Sabtang is my favorite part of our tour. Our overnight stay here is not included in the package so we paid P500 each to Nanay Ading.🙂 It has two comfort rooms, two beds, a videoke machine for singers wannabe out there hahaha, television (with cable, aha!), refrigerator and my favorite part, it has the BEST view of Sabtang Island!!!🙂🙂🙂  The best afternoon nap of my life happened there.😀 I slept on a cliff with the amazing view of the ocean on my left and of the beautiful mountain on my right.🙂 And during that night, the sky was full of staaaarrrrs! The moon was shining so bright! That night was truly amazing. So, I highly recommend this place! And I also recommend that you stay overnight at Sabtang.🙂




The following are the restaurants we tried at Batanes. Some of which are a bit pricey if you just eat alone but of course, cheaper when shared with your travel buddies.😀





With BISUMI Tours & Services:

  •  Plane Ticket via Skyjet                            P3,996
  • Tour Package                                               P5,900
  • Sabtang Lighthouse Stay                        P500
  • Triple M Homestay                                   P1,800
  • Meals                                                             P1,000
  • Rental Fee (Bicycle)                                  P25
  • Tricycle Fare                                                 P200
  • Terminal Fee (Basco Airport)                P100
  • Miscellaneous                                             P200

                                                             TOTAL:        P13,721

If DIY (Do-It-Yourself)

  • Plane Ticket (via Skyjet)                                                                   P3,996
  • Triple M Home stay (Fan Room for 3 days)                                P1,200
  • Sabtang Lighthouse Stay                                                                  P500
  • Meals (depends on your hunger and appetite haha)               P1500
  • North Batan Tricycle Tour (P500 each, min of 2pax)               P500
  • South Batan Tricycle Tour (P750 each, min of 2 pax)               P750
  • Sabtang Tricycle Tour (P400 each, min of 2 pax)                       P400
  • Eco Tourism Fee (to be paid upon arrival at the airport)        P350
  • Basco-Ivatan Port and vice versa Tricyle Fare                           P250
  • Sabtang Boat Ride (two-way)                                                          P150
  • Sabtang Environmental Fee                                                             P200
  • Rental Fee (Bicycle)                                                                            P25
  • Rental Fee (Ivatan Costume)                                                           P20
  • Terminal Fee (Basco Airport)                                                          P100

                                                                           TOTAL:            P9,941

If you have noticed, it’s really cheaper if you won’t travel ALONE. hahaha So better bring your sibling, your best friend, your kalandian, your ex (if you haven’t moved on yet! LOL) or your FOREVER! Achuchu! hahaha

Batanes is really a very very beautiful place. She’ll surely break your heart upon leaving.😦 I’ll see you again soon, Batanes!🙂



If you have any comments or questions, feel free to leave a comment!🙂 I hope you enjoyed reading!😀 I also hope you find this useful for your Batanes getaway soon!🙂 That’s all folks! :*





Credits to my companions for some photos above. LOL



2D1N BALER Travel Guide

You can check my Baler video blog here or just continue reading.😀

BALER is one of the famous surfing spots in the Philippines. It is the provincial capital of Aurora, located in the eastern part of Central Luzon region.


The cheaper way to get to Baler is by taking any bus from Metro Manila to Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija (P190) then from Cabanatuan to Baler via bus or van (P250).

If you want a direct trip, Genesis Transport, Inc. is the only bus line that provides a direct route from Cubao to Baler. For more information, visit their official website at or you may call (+632)709-0545 and (+632)441-6834 or visit them at G/F Genesis Transport Building 704 EDSA Corner New York St., Cubao, Quezon City, Philippines 1109. Travel time from Cubao to Baler is 6 to 7 hours for P450 (Standard A/C).

genesis schedule

But if you want a comfy travel or the fastest way possible like what we did, choose JoyBus, the Executive/Deluxe coach of Genesis Transport, Inc.

joy bus.JPG

We left Cubao Terminal around 1 o’clock in the morning and arrived at Balete Park around 5:30 (earlier than expected) that was why we had a spooky experience because it was still dark. Dogs were howling and some were getting close to us. Waaaahhhh!!!! We were holding hands while saying all the prayers we know. HAHAHAHA It was quite a long walk from the highway to Balete Park. Good thing a concerned guy, who have noticed how scared we were, allowed us to hop on his humble “delivery” tricyle. LOL.

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It was prohibited to climb the tree but I was willing to pay for the penalty. Hihi If you’re curious, I climbed through its roots. #TarzanMode

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Inside the Balete Tree

Entrance fee: P10 for adults, P5 for kids.




A tour guide from the park approached us and offered to do some tricky shots like the ones posted above. He also accompanied us inside the Balete tree and took more photos. I forgot how much did we pay him, guess ’twas P200.

Obviously, the tricycle (a motorcycle with an attached sidecar) is the main mode of transportation around Baler. And that’s my favorite seat. HAHAHA


From Balete Park to Ditumabo, the fare was P100. Then from the Ditumabo tricycle terminal to the starting area of the trek (four-kilometer struggling trip for the tricy hahaha), the fare was also P100. We were advised to hire a tour guide while trekking to the falls so we hired manong driver as our tour guide. HAHAHA We paid him a total of P500 or P6oo? I forgot. LOL

Entrance fee: P30

It took us an hour to get to the falls but we certainly love the experience! Truly unforgettable!🙂


The very very cold water didn’t stop us from taking a dip. We were the second group to arrive here so we were able to enjoy the falls as much as we wanted to. HAHAHA If you’re planning to go here, take the earliest tour to avoid photobombers. LOL

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One of my favorite shots during our Baler trip. It made me miss my brothers. HUHUHU


Yey!🙂 Baler beybbehhhh!😀 I forgot the name of our hotel/lodge. Sorry. But there are a lot of affordable rooms in Baler and there are also expensive ones, some even have pools. So it depends on you. But since we were on a tight budget, haha, we chose the cheapest  one available which was P1,700 per night for the three of us already.


We weren’t able to try their food but I just took a photo ‘coz I like their concept. HAHA




For our lunch, we tried the famous Gerry’s buffet for P200 only.


Entrance fee: P35 good for two sites already (Museo de Baler and Balay ni Aurora)

This is just a small museum but I still recommend the place because of the artifacts and paintings about the history of Aurora. I didn’t post everything  inside the museum ‘coz I want you to appreciate them with your own eyes.🙂




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This was my first surfing experience. I failed on my first attempt but after my instructor told me not to look at the board and just look straight to the shore, I finally did it! Yeyyy! Then repeated it for more than fifty times. LOL Got addicted right away. HAHAHA We paid P250 for the surf board and P100 for the instructor, so a total of P350 for a one-hour surf. If you have noticed, I wore different swimwear in the photos above because we surfed both on our first and second day stay.😀


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Meet my beautiful Baler travel buddies Hafz (center) and Dimple (right)🙂


Another favorite part of our Baler trip was our trek to Baler Lighthouse which we did on our second day. It was very challenging ‘coz the way to the top was so steep and a bit slippery and we only had stones and roots as our support. It was a bit exhausting for non-active girls like us. HAHAHA

But when we already reached the top, we suddenly forgot the pain after witnessing the most amazing view of Baler.

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My girls have fear of heights (notice Hafz’ hands hahaha) but so what, they still made it! hahaha Proud of you girls! *mwah*

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The last photo above was the scariest pose I’ve ever done in my life because I was standing on the topmost-slash-prohibited-slash-most dangerous spot in the Lighthouse. HAHAHA. My buddies were the ones who felt more nervous and our tour guide was begging me repetitively to go down since his license as a tour guide will be cancelled if something bad happened to me. Sorry po.😀

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Our tour guide said that Baler was washed away by a tidal wave in the 17th century. Thousands of lives were lost and only few families survived when they went up to the nearby hill which is now known as the Ermita Hill.



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We bought our souvenir shirts and fridge magnets at the Pasalubong center. Then for delicious homemade products and goodies, we went to Nanay Pacing Pasalubong store. Our tricycle driver was also our tour guide for the second day. From Baler Lighthouse, Ermita Hill, Hanging Bridge and Pasalubong center, we gave him P1000.

We were not able to reserve a bus going back to Manila but our tour guide contacted a van driver for us going to Cabanatuan. We just then rode a bus from Cabanatuan to Cubao. We arrived in Manila around 10pm.

That’s all folks!🙂 I wish to go back to Baler very soon!😉




30 useful Filipino and Bisaya phrases when traveling

I have noticed that some foreign tourists spend a longer time in the Philippines than in other Asian countries. When I asked them for the reason, they said that aside from having beautiful beaches here, another thing they love about the Philippines is its people. They said that Filipinos are hospitable and sweet, and that most of us can speak and understand English. So if you’re lost somewhere here, you can ask even the street vendor for directions. However, it feels better to travel around the country while using some Filipino or Tagalog phrases. Philippines has more than 120 dialects and Filipino is our national language. Nonetheless, Bisaya, which is one of the 8 major dialects of the country, is the one being widely used in Visayas and Mindanao. So the following are the common Filipino and Bisaya words and phrases:

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These are just some common phrases you can use while exploring our beautiful country. If you want to learn more about our language or other local dialect, feel free to comment below or email me at  I will be more than happy to help you.





TOP places to go for SUMMER 2016



April and May are the hottest months in the Philippines, thus, it’s the official SUMMER season of the country. I say “official” because it’s like summer for the whole year here, it’s really hot all year round. Well, we’re a tropical country. Haha.😀 For us Filipinos, the word “summer” is synonymous to “beach”, “swimming”, “adventure”, “road trip” or “travel”. One summer is not enough to visit all the beautiful white beaches, amazing rock formations and great tourist spots that we have here. Whatever your hobby is, whether it’s surfing, scuba diving, snorkeling, mountaineering, fishing or just walking in the seashore LOL, you can have the best experience of it… here in the Philippines!🙂

On this post, I’ll be talking about the top places in the Philippines for every different activity. I mean, top surfing spots, scuba diving spots and the like. But before that, let me give you a short description of the Philippine geography.

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Philippines is an archipelago that consists 7,107 islands which are divided into three large groups namely: Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. But as of the latest count, there are actually 7,641 islands, as shown by the Philippine Islands Measurements Project, a special project conducted by the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority (NAMRIA). Read the full article about this here. Philippines has a total land area of approximately 300,000 square kilometers (115,831 sq mi). We have a total of 81 provinces and 122 cities. Our capital city is Manila which is part of the province of Metro Manila in Luzon. To avoid confusion, Manila is a city and Metro Manila is a province. The busiest airports and national offices of different government agencies are located in Metro Manila. And the worst traffic in the country is also in… yah, in Metro Manila! LOL But despite the traffic, there are still a lot of good places here. There are a lot of good restaurants, big shopping malls, casinos and 4 to 5-star hotels. And also, most of the big concerts and music festivals are being held here. However, if you’re not into urban living or if you want to experience the beauty of nature, then Manila is not the place to be. Yeow!😀

To those who love MOUNTAINEERING, here is the list of good choices in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. (My lists will be divided into these three island groups so that you can experience all those different activities even if you’re just staying in one group of islands.)

Mount Pinatubo, Zambales – an active stratovolcano in the Cabusilan mountains. (4,875 ft, minor climb)
Mount Pico de Loro, Cavite – a.k.a. Mount Palay-palay, a dormant volcano with an iconic rock peak also known as Parrot’s beak. (2,178 ft, minor climb)
Mount Pulag, Benguet – highest peak in Luzon, 3rd highest mountain in the Philippines. (9,586 ft, major climb)
Mount Mariveles, Bataan – a dormant volcano in the province of Bataan, a.k.a. Mount Tarak. (4,553 ft, major climb)
Mount Banahaw, Quezon – the Holy Mountain in the Philippines. (7,119 ft, major climb)
Mount Mayon, Albay– a.k.a. The Perfect cone, active composite volcano with almost symmetric conical shape. (8,080 ft, major climb)
Mount Daguldul, Batangas – coastal mountain of San Juan with a beautiful seascape. (2,198 ft, minor climb)
Mount Guiting-guiting, Romblon – a.k.a. G2, jagged mountain of rock. (6,751 ft, major climb)

Mount Kanla-on, Negros Occidental – most active and highest volcano in Visayas. (7,988 ft, major climb)

Mount Apo, Davao del Sur – highest peak in the Philippines. (9,691 ft, major climb) Sadly, it is closed for three to five years because of the recent forest fire.😦
Kitanglad Mountain Range, Bukidnon – rich in biodiversity and was declared a protected area in 2000. (9,511 ft, major climb)




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Mount Mayon, Albay



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Mount Apo, Davao
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Mount Pico de Loro, Cavite
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Mount Tarak or Mount Mariveles, Bataan
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Mount Pinatubo, Zambales


I have some friends who love the mountains but not the beach. They have great strength for hiking but not for swimming. Some of them don’t even know how to swim. But not all swimmers can hike too. *winks* So my next list will be about the beautiful BEACHES in the Philippines.


Matukad Island, Caramoan, Camarines Sur (Nearest airport: Virac airport)
Calaguas Island, Camarines Norte (Naga airport)
El Nido, Palawan (El Nido airport or Puerto Prinsesa International Airport – 6 hours land travel to El Nido)
Coron, Palawan (Busuanga airport)
Puraran Beach, Catanduanes (Virac airport)
White Beach, Puerto Galera (NAIA Terminal Terminals in Manila)
Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte (Laoag International Airport)


Boracay, Aklan (Caticlan airport or Kalibo International Airport – 2 hours travel to Boracay)
Bantayan Island, Cebu (Mactan Cebu International Airport)
Kalanggaman Island, Leyte (Tacloban airport)
Malapascua Island, Cebu (Mactan Cebu International Airport)
Salagdoong Beach, Siquijor (Dumaguete airport)
Panglao Island, Bohol (Tagbilaran airport)


Naked Island, Surigao del Sur (Butuan airport)
Dahican Beach, Mati, Davao Oriental (Davao International Airport)
White Island, Camiguin (Cagayan de Oro airport)
Samal Island, Davao (Davao International Airport)

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Bantayan Island, Cebu
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El Nido, Palawan
Boracay, Aklan
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Puerto Galera, Oriental Mindoro
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Malapascua Island, Cebu
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Camiguin Island
Coron, Palawan
Calaguas Island, Camarines Norte
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Samal Island, Davao
Panglao Island, Bohol

While there are many people who go to the beach just for swimming, there are others who want more than that, they are the surfers! Here is the list of SURFING spots in our country.

Baler, Aurora (6 hours land travel from Manila)
Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte (10 hours land travel from Manila or 2 hours from Laoag airport)
Puraran Beach, Catanduanes (1 hour travel from Virac port)
Liw-liwa, Zambales (4 hours land travel from Manila)
Bagasbas Beach, Daet, Camarines Norte (7 hours land travel from Manila or 2 hours land travel from Naga City)
San Juan, La Union (5 hours land travel from Manila)

Calicoan Island, Eastern Samar (3 hours land travel from Tacloban City)

Dahican Beach, Mati, Davao Oriental (4 hours land travel from Davao City)
Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte (45 minutes direct flight from Cebu or 3 hours ferry from Surigao City or Butuan City)

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San Juan, La Union
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Siargao Island
Calicoan, Eastern Samar
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Baler, Aurora

Disclaimer: Some of the pictures posted above are mine, some are not. But I have included the links or pages of the owners of the photos who wrote about their travel experiences on those places. You may check their pages if you want.🙂

That’s all for now. Will post the remaining lists on Part 2.😀






Travel guide for foreigners who want to visit Philippines

I have already posted a travel guide for Filipinos who are planning to visit other countries. This time, before I will post my local travel experiences, I’d like to also give a guide for our foreign tourists who want to see the beauty of our beloved country – Philippines.

FIRST, let’s talk about the visa requirement.

Here is the list of the non-visa required countries who are given an initial stay of 30 days for free under EO408. Again, it’s exactly 30 days, not one month. Okay?😀

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You can extend your stay for a certain fee in any immigration office for another 29 days (a total of 59) and so on but take note that if your entire stay is 6 months or more, you need to get an Emigration Clearance Certificate (ECC) at any immigration office nationwide (see list of offices here or a more detailed one here) and present it to the immigration officer upon departure. You may also avail the Visa Upon Arrival (VUA) at the airport to have the 59 days of stay ahead. If you plan to avail the VUA, make sure to prepare your Philippine peso before coming in to our country. There are money changers and ATMs in some airports though, but it’s better if you have Philippine peso on hand. Debit and credit cards are not accepted at the immigration cashiers.

For former Philippine passport holders who are now holding a non-visa required passport, you are given a Balikbayan privilege stay for 365 days. This privilege can be extended to your spouse and children ONLY if you are arriving together. You may be required to present a marriage or birth certificate to the immigration officer upon arrival to establish the relationship.

If you’re traveling with a minor who is not your child and who is 14 years old and below, under Section 29(a) (12) of the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940, that minor is classified as excludable. In order for him to be admitted into the Philippines, he must secure a Waiver of Exclusion Ground (WEG) from the Bureau of Immigration. For more information about this, click here.

For Brazil and Israel passport holders, you are given an initial stay of 59 days.

For Hongkong – SAR and Macau – SAR, you can stay for 14 days.

For British National Overseas and Macau – Portuguese, your initial stay is 7 days only.

Those countries which are not under EO408 and which are not mentioned above are considered visa-required countries. Visa-required passport holders need to apply for a temporary visitor’s visa at a Philippine Foreign Service Post at his/her country of origin or place of legal residence. However, there are some visa-required nationals who can still stay for a certain number of days here by using his visa issued by other countries.

Take for example, for Chinese passport holders, you may use your valid tourist, business, working, student or resident visa in USA, Japan, Australia, Canada and Schengen to have 7 days of stay. However, you must prepare a photocopy of the biopage of your passport or the visa of any of the said countries because our immigration officers are not allowed to stamp on a Chinese passport.

Indian citizens can also use valid USA, Japan, Australia, Canada, Schengen, Singapore and UK visa to have 14 days of stay. Transit visa of these countries is not allowed.

SECOND, your passport should be at least six (6) months valid upon your arrival. However, under Operations Order No. SBM-2015-26, below is the list of countries whose nationals may be admitted into our country with passports of less than six months validity from date of arrival.

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THIRD, for holders of temporary visitor’s visa, Philippine visa is usually valid for 3 to 6 months from the issue date, it means you must enter the country on or before the expiration date. However, your allowable days of stay is different. The number of days is normally 14, 30 or 59 which is counted from the date of your arrival.

FOURTH, prepare your return ticket which is encoded in ENGLISH. Sometimes, hotel booking may be also asked or the name and address of your sponsor here in the Philippines.

FIFTH, make sure to fill out completely an immigration and custom form before going to the immigration area.

SIXTH, there are 12 international airports and seaports in our country (see the complete list here). Our major airports are located in Manila, these are NAIA Terminals 1, 2 and 3. Terminal 1 is exclusive for international flights. Terminal 2 is operated by Philippine Airlines (both domestic and international) while Terminal 3 is operated by various airlines (international) and Cebu Pacific (domestic). We also have international airports in Kalibo (Boracay), Cebu and Davao. So, you may book your tickets directly to these airports if it’s available from your country.

For more updated information, please check the official website of the Bureau of Immigration of the Republic of the Philippines at

SEVENTH, if you have connecting flights, you may avail of the Airport Loop or Airport bus to and from NAIA terminals 1, 2, 3 and 4 for free.

EIGHTH, if you have connecting flight from the other terminal in Manila, please allot enough time going there (like at least 4 to 5 hours gap) because y’know – TRAFFIC!!!

NINTH, Philippines is a tropical country so just wear and bring light clothes. We have two seasons – the wet season and the dry season. The rainy season starts in July and lasts until November. September and October are frequently the typhoon season. While April and May are the hottest months in the Philippines.

Lastly, in the Philippines, power socket type A is used but some of our virgin beaches or islands have shortage of power supply so bring your power banks or extra batteries for your gadgets.

This is just a basic travel guide. In my next posts, I will provide you a list of the best beaches or tourist destinations in the country and a list of the must-try food or delicacies or any list that I can think of, soon. hahaha

I apologize for this lengthy post but I hope you still find this useful.🙂 Thank you for your time, I appreciate it a loooot!😉