Posted in Travel and Fun

Villa Adela | Home Away From Home

Last Thursday, our supposed to be Negros Island getaway was cancelled because of hubby’s grandfather’s death. He passed away last September 11, so we decided to cancel our trip and be at the wake instead.

Knowing that we had to stay in Balamban, I was worried about where to stay. I didn’t want to bother his relatives in accomodating us. So we agreed to stay in the nearest hotel or pension house. I surfed the web the day before and I found out about Villa Adela. It is situated near the town proper — a walking distance to the market, church, Baywalk plaza, V-hire and bus terminal, and Gaisano Mall.

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When we arrived, the outside of the pension house already captured my heart. I just knew that I would feel at home.

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dsc_0962 Here’s Ace at the reception area, checking in. 

We were welcomed by the receptionist smile as she asked for our booking information. After that, she gave our key to the room . We stayed in a deluxe room good for two. It’s fully air-conditioned with hot and cold shower.

For there room rates, kindly visit their website by clicking here.

 

During our stay, we enjoyed their free bread and coffee every the morning. They have a dining area where guests can enjoy their morning coffee. In fact, during our first morning we met an Australian author who also stayed the place. We had a nice talk as he shared to us his books available in Amazon.

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While we were at the reception area, these 3D paintings caught my attention. They are really amazing that I was in awe even until we checked out.

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Aren’t they wonderful? I’m pretty sure the owners have this explicit love of art very much.

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Alright, let’s go upstairs because we stayed on the second floor.

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Look at this beautiful view of Paris. So, why should I spend thousands to go to France when I can enjoy this scene only in Balamban. LOL.

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Take me to Paris!

Actually, this ‘Paris view’ is also a 3D painting. Look!

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Here’s the hallway to the family rooms.

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I was not able to take a photo of our room, it slipped out of my mind.

Anyway, our stay at Villa Adela was great. It was quiet and vey homey. It felt like a home away from home. Despite our cancelled trip, our Balamban visit was still worth it. 🙂

’till next time! Keep safe!

 

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Posted in Travel and Fun

A Weekend Dip. | Durano Eco Farm and Spring Resort

In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks. ~ John Muir

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Last weekend, we planned to climb the highest mountain peak in the northern Cebu, but the weather got on our way. It would be very dangerous for us to climb because it was slippery and we’re afraid of landslides. As much as we want it, but we had to choice but to cancel our plan.

However, our feet really itched for an adventure. So, we decided to have a dip in a cold spring instead.

Situated in Barangay Corte, Carmen, Cebu is a place where one could take a dip in a cold spring in the middle of a rainforest. I’m talking about Durano Eco Farm Spring and Resort.

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If you’re someone who is sick of chlorinated water and wants a natural one that flows from a cold spring, then this place is perfect for you. The water is flowing and not stagnant. After all, there is no refreshing feeling more than soaking your body in the cold, clean water. 🙂

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The gang arrived!

How to get there:
Take a bus from Cebu North Bus Terminal, (all northbound buses will pass by the municipality of Carmen) so you can take any of them. Tell the driver’s assistant (konduktor) to drop you off at Carmen Public Market. The fare is 40pesos. When you get off, a swarm of motorcycle drivers will offer you a ride to your destination. Tell them to take you to Durano Eco Farm. The fare is 35pesos.

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Once you get there, you have to pay an entrance fee of 60pesos for adults and 30pesos for kids. You can also book your preferred accommodation like cottages, tables or a tree house. Yes, you read it right. You can also stay in a tree house which is also available for overnight use.

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One of the cottages and the kids’ pool. 

From the reception area, you have to descend towards the swimming area. You will hear the sound of the water flowing and feel the tranquility of life in the middle of the forest.

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Kids’ pool.

Activities: The place is not only perfect for friends but also for family bondings as well. The resort has pools of various depths. Kids can have their own time at the two kiddie pools located on the upper part. From there, the water flows down to the adult’s pool, from 4ft to the 12ft.

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Ace’s dive!

Team building can also be done in the farm. They have enough space to do team building activities. That is if you’re sick of doing it on the beach.

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Ya!

There is also an adjacent river which you can opt to trek. Just be cautioned that the rocks are slippery and the flow of the water is a bit rough. It’s also dangerous to trek it on a rainy weather because of the possibility of a flood.

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Green, green, green.

Look at our faces. 😀

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Abby, Louise and yours truly. 

Your eyes will be amazed at the wonderful rock formations along the way. And you would surely be more in love with nature and swear to yourself to come back.

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Awe!

Here’s a photo of me not getting enough of all the wonders.

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Me trying to take in all the positive ions. 😀 

If the plan does not work, change the plan but never the goal. 

Things don’t always go our way, but if we learn to look at them from another perspective, they will surely lead us to something better. 🙂 Our climb to Mt Manghilao was maybe canceled  but it did lead us here.

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Feeling relaxed. 

Thank you for reading ’til here. See yah on our next travel adventure. 😀

Keep safe!

 

 

 

 

Posted in Travel and Fun

How Could We Say ‘No’ to These Places?

Look, how Mother Nature awe us! How could we say ‘No’ to these places?

When you travel, you will get to know many places and meet many different cultures. YourAmazingPlaces.com today is narrowing down a list of 23 places which we assume that those places are so unique and are worth to be seen in your lifetime. Blagaj, Bosnia and Herzegovina source Dongchuan, Red Land in China source Flam Valley, Norway […]

via 23 Extraordinary And Unique Places You should Visit!… — seagirll

Posted in Travel and Fun

Colorful Place in The North | Medellin, Cebu

Last Sunday, amid our busy days, Ace and I got the chance to visit a colorful town in the Northern part of Cebu to attend my cousin’s christening. The place I’m talking about is Medellin, Cebu. It is 113 kilometers (70 mi) away from Cebu City.

You will know that you reached the town because of the colorful bridges and road signs. You will be welcomed by the shades of purple, green, orange and blue. Everything is just full of colors.

Here, take a look at their municipal hall.

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Can you see me? LOL

I was very amazed because all government infrastructures are painted alike. I find it very unique and brilliant.

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Public plaza

Unfortunately, I was not able to take a lot of pictures because Ace and I were touring the place by a motorbike. The weather was too hot to stop and take a shot. But, I tell you, the town is worth a visit.

After the christening in church, we stopped by this area.

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Bridge of love.

They call this ‘the Bridges of Love’. You can easily see this because it’s by the dockside.

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Despite the scorching heat of the sun, I couldn’t help but take a picture of myself here. Sadly, Ace was worried he might get burnt so here, let me just take a selfie. 😛

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Across this colorful bridge is a cottage full of colors, too.

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Ahh.. I would love to stay longer to explore the place and it’s hidden attractions but time didn’t permit. Anyway, we plan to visit it again after our wedding. And on that time, we will go to the fantastic island which everybody on the internet is talking about. Here, take a look.

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Photo credit: Traveler’s couch

I’ve been wanting to go there and hopefully it would be realized in the following months. 🙂

So, what do you think of this place?

 

 

 

Posted in Travel and Fun

Osmeña Peak | Our Struggle in Reaching The Summit.

It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves. ~Edmund Hillary

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Osmeña Peak, achieved!

Climbing the highest peak of Cebu is one of my best achievement this year. So, this post goes to my climbing buddies — Niña, Mapril, Ate Edeza and Ace. If not because of them, reaching the summit of Osmeña peak would only remain a plan. I’ve been wanting to go there since 2014. But we never got a chance to do so, until last Sunday. It was the perfect gift for Labor day!

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The starting point of the climb.

It was an unplanned adventure. While suffering from ‘i-feel-crazy-syndrome’, I posted that I wanted to go to O’peak as soon as possible but I don’t have a companion. Out of nowhere, my friend Mapril sent me a message on Skype saying she wanted, too. And so we agreed to go the next day.

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We met in Jollibee, Hi-way at 12:30am. We then rode a taxi going to Cebu City South bus terminal. We’re able to catch the first bus trip bound to Oslob via Dalaguete at 1:30am. There was no traffic so the usual 2-3 hours ride became only an hour and a half. We arrived at the Mantalungon junction at 3:30. We rode a motorcycle to the public market which took 30 minutes. We chose to hike from the market to the peak because it was too early.

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This photo was taken on our way back to Dalaguete.

Then, the epic failed hike. It was still dark and we forgot to bring flashlights with us. Fortunately, our phones have. But we got lost still. Thanks to the concerned motorcycle drivers who passed us. He told us that we’re on the wrong way. Gosh! We already walked far from the right trail. (facepalm) We just laughed it out and headed back to where the driver said the correct path.

I was the one who insisted to hike from the market instead of starting from foot of the mountain. I never expected it to be that exhausting. I was left behind and Ace was starting to complain about my slow pace. What shall I do? My knees were trembling and would eventually give up if I will force it to keep up with their pace. So, Ace took my backpack and carried it. Until we’re able to keep up with them. (Oh, thanks!)

It does not matter how slowly you go, so long as you do not stop!

We could tell that we are near because of the thick fog, like almost zero visibility around. We met some locals who were heading to the church for the early morning mass. As we greeted them good morning, almost all of their answers is, “Good morning! Are you heading to O’peak? You’re very early!” Yeah, we are indeed!

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The sun trying to shine amid the thick fog.

Despite being lost and my slow pace,  the hike to the foot only took us one hour. So we reached the registration area at exactly 5:00am. After paying at the counter, we immediately started our trek because the sun is starting to break.

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Look at the thick fog behind Ace.

And finally we reached the crest. And we’re able to catch the sunrise. Isn’t it beautiful to witness the rise of a new day?

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Ace — the man who can’t be moved.

Look at those dirty toes. Hey! It’s worth the 4 kilometers hike.

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Catching the sun rise.

The view from the top is just breathtakingly beautiful. It made us forget our struggle in reaching it. It’s just amazing that even these pictures don’t give justice.

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Mantalungon mountain range.

Because of the fog around, the islands of Bohol and Negros is not visible in the camera. The fog would be gone around 7:30am.

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Conquered!

We agreed to go down at 7:30 because we did not bring food with us. And it was starting to be crowded at the crest, too.

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Happy faces? or Hungry faces?
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Feeling accomplished.

 

The next picture is rated SPG. Please proceed with caution. Hahah 😀

 

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Excuse me.

It was a fun and exhausting labor day adventure. And I’m so glad I’m scratching another place on my travel bucket list. 🙂

 

VERDICT:  Osmeña Peak, you gave me muscle pain, but I would climb you again. Achieved!

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this travel diary of ours. 🙂 ‘Til our next wanderlust. Keep safe!

Posted in Travel and Fun

Osmeña Peak: Travel Guide

Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So… get on your way! ~ Dr Seuss.

 

Osmeña Peak — the highest peak of Cebu is another place I scratched on my travel bucket list this year!!! We climbed the peak yesterday and I’m happy to share this travel guide for those who are planning to climb it. 

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Osmeña Peak, achieved!

Where is Osmeña Peak?

It is the highest peak among the Mantalungon mountain ranges. Nestled in the Municipality of Dalaguete, Cebu and rising approximately 1,000 meters above sea level, making it the highest peak in the island. It is  named after the famous Osmeña clan of Cebu. It gives 360-degree view of Cebu coastline including the island of Bohol and Negros.  Just a one to two-hour bus ride from the city.

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Mantalungon range.

 

How to get there? 

Assembly time: 12:30am (Why so early? Because we wanted to see the sunrise at the peak.)

You have to be at the Cebu City South Bus terminal and catch the bus going to Bato or Oslob via Dalaguete. We caught the first bus trip at 1:30am and arrived at Dalaguete and Mantalungon junction at 3:30am. (It was very early so there was no traffic, so we arrived early, too.) The fare is only Php101. Tell the driver’s assistant (konduktor) to drop you off at Dalaguete-Mantalungon junction.

You will be greeted by a swarm of motorcycle drivers who will offer you a ride to Mantalungon Public Market for Php50. They can also drive you up to the foot of the peak for Php100 pesos each. Since we arrived early, we decided to walk from the market.

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The gang.

What to do there?

It is just a mountain peak, so there is nothing much to do there. But you will be captivated by the 360-degree view of the island and get to enjoy the sunrise with the foggy surrounding. (That is if you are early.) Prepare to be amazed how great is God’s creation. You can have range hopping if you want and just allow yourself to be one with the nature.

Others choose to camp there. There is a camping area set for those who wanted to stay overnight.

Where else to go?

Mantalungon is the vegetable basket of Cebu, so you can tour to the locals vegetable farms. In our case, we went to Dalaguete proper and proceed to Obong Spring.

Travel tips:

Travel light and bring a lot of water. Wear proper climbing attire especially your footwear. If you plan to stay overnight, bring your own tent and make sure to bring a thick jacket or coat to protect you from extreme cold. Beware of the drivers asking you more than the exact fare.

The lot to the crest is privately owned, thus there is a Php30 entrance fee. You can hire a tour guide at the registration area, but the trail to the peak is pretty established so we prefer not to. Just watch your steps. Remember that you are climbing a mountain, some rocks are lose.

And one more thing, wherever you go, always keep in mind the hiking rules ‘Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but pictures, kill nothing but time and burn nothing but calories.’

 

I hope you find this travel guide helpful. 🙂 Stay tuned for my next post about our epic adventure to the summit. Keep safe!

 

Posted in Travel and Fun

Once Upon A Summer Time in Camotes Island | Day 2

Every summer has its own story. 🙂

And here is ours…..

Welcome to our Day 2 Camotes Island adventure. You may catch up our Day 1 adventure by clicking this. You can see the list of our expenses at the end of this post. 🙂

 

So, because it was just a weekend getaway, as much as we wanted to stay longer in the island, we couldn’t because we have to work the next day.

Ace set up his alarm at 6:00am, but I was already up as early as 5:00. I tried to wake him up, but his sleepy head refused to. I went out to check if the girls are already up. Here’s my morning view.

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I could wake up to this everyday.

There were already few people in the beach. Just looking at the wide shore, made me want to start the day immediately. But wait, let’s see if Abby and Louise were already up.

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Wake up, sleepy heads!

Uh-oh! Not yet. But because I was very excited to hit the beach, I woke them up. Heheh.. After doing so, I went back to our room to wake up the handsome guy. 🙂

We had our breakfast first. The girls wanted to eat some bread. There is a bakery shop nearby, so we took a walk and looked for it. Ace and I, by the way, ate our breakfast  in a restaurant by the beach because I wanted to eat some rice.

Camotes Island is known for its beautiful white beaches. On our first day, we went to Mangudlong Rock Resort. But this time, we’re in Santiago White Beach.

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Alright, so time to hit the beach.

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The photo-bombing bamboo pole. Tsk.
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Oh dear, you don’t know how thick is the sun cream on my skin.
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Abby’s signature pose. LOL

The sun was scorching hot. Abby had her face done because of this pose. Haha.

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Here’s Louise.

She didn’t want a close up shot. Wish granted.

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Our handsome lifeguard.
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Volleyball.
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I don’t know how to play it, so the ball is just a prop. LOL 😛
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Oh!

Now, you know why I love this man. 😀

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And why he loves me. 😛

Haha, so much for our love story.

Here’s a fact: Ace doesn’t know how to back float. We tried to teach him but he’s not a great student. Hahah.

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Floating ladies.

It was already 9:30, and the sun’s heat was already unbearable.

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Goodluck for the tans.

We agreed to stop swimming by 10 because it was already very hot… We went back to our resort and prepared our things because we have to be early at the port to buy our tickets. During peak seasons, tickets are usually fully booked an hour before departure time.

We were supposed to ride the 3pm boat going to Danao Port, but we learned that there is a 1pm ride. So we called Kuya James to pick us up so we can still buy tickets. Luckily, when we reached the port, the 11:30 boat was still there and tickets were still available. So, without second thinking, we agreed to board it. The bus left at exactly 12:00 instead of 11:30 because there were only few passengers. Crews said, it’s the afternoon ride which are usually loaded. Regardless to that, we’re happy to go home without any problems.

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Leaving the island.
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Look who are tanned.

We love to stay longer but we have a work in the city the next day. So, maybe we can during our next visit. 🙂

‘Til we meet again, Camotes. Adios!

 

Here’s the list of our expenses (Ace and I shared budget but I’m writing an individual expenses for you) :

Day 1

  • Fare (Mandaue-Danao Port) – Php 30
  • Boat ticket (Danao-Camotes) – Php 180
  • Terminal fee – Php 5
  • Motorcycle fee (Php 600/2) – Php 300
  • Buho Rock Resort Entrance Fee – Php 20
  • Timubo Cave Entance Fee – Php 25
  • Lake Danao – Php 15
  • Kayaking Fee – Php 50
  • Paraiso Cave – Php 35
  • Mangudlong Rock Resort – Php 20

Day 2

  • Boat Ticket (Camotes-Danao) – Php 180
  • Terminal fee – Php 5
  • Pedicab to Danao Terminal – Php 15
  • Jeepney Fare (Danao to Mandaue) – Php 30

Other expenses:

  • Tent Rental – Php 350
  • Aircon Room at Bella Vista Mare Resort – Php 1450*

  * This is where we slept. 

** Food expenses are not included here because we have different preferences. Rest assured, food in Camotes Island are of reasonable prices.

 

I hope you enjoyed our Camotes island adventure! ‘Til next travel! Keep safe. 🙂