TRAVEL

Iloilo and Guimaras Budget Trip

Iloilo and Guimaras Trip have been on my list ever since I started traveling the Philippines. In Iloilo, Garin Farm is first on my list. In Guimaras, tasting its sweet mangoes is my priority. When this trip finally commenced, I can’t help but smile the whole time I was there. (Parang sira lang).

It was in 22nd and 23rd of February when I embarked my first solo trip to the Visayas. I just booked this trip on an impulse, so it was thrilling when this came to reality.

I only planned for my itinerary and my hostel for the first night. The rest was unplanned.

I went to NAIA at 4:30AM. Then, waited for our airplane that departed at 5:55PM. I arrived at Iloilo International Airport at 8:00PM, earlier than our expected arrival. I rented a taxi for going to my hostel. Luckily, my house parent was so kind and accommodating. When I reached my room, I just washed, slept, and skipped dinner.

Day 1 – Morning Trip, Garin Farm

The next morning, I woke up a little bit late, like 6:00AM. Then, I traveled to Iloilo City by riding jeepneys. I prayed hard to God to give the best people to get through this journey. At SM Iloilo City, I rode another jeepney going to the bus station that passes by the Garin Farm. My fare was discounted because I brought my student ID. Side story: I was not eating my breakfast yet, so at the bus station, I bought coffee in a cup. I only had 1,000 in my wallet at that time. And unfortunately, the seller has no change for it. The bus driver volunteered to pay for my coffee. How generous is he! But still, I paid for it along with my bus fare. Hehe.

Here are some pictures of Garin Farm.

I was in Garin Farm for half a day. I enjoyed the view, and the scenes up in the sky. As if I was in heaven, really. I never felt that good before. However, it was 11AM, I was still there, with no sunglasses, no umbrellas or caps, and even sunblock. Still, I am beyond grateful for having seen this place.

After eating my lunch at Garin Farm, I headed to some of the churches on my list.

Day 1 – Afternoon Trip, Church Hopping

My favorite church was Miagao Church in Iloilo. Who would not love this church?

I love its structure, solemnity, and its history. I’ve been eyeing to visit this ever since, and finally seeing it in person made my existence complete! 🙂

Aside from this church, I also went to see other churches such as Guimbal Church, and Tagbanua Church before going to an ancient house in Iloilo, called Balay na Bato.

Balay na Bato

This is one of my favorite historical spots so far. I loved everything about it because it surely reflected the ways on how the ancient Filipinos lived before. Good thing it was preserved, no? 🙂

I love every single shot I had here. Also, at this point, I realized how challenging it was to be traveling alone. Nobody will take photos of me. Huehue.

After visiting this church, while viewing my Facebook My Day, I saw one of my friends was also in that place. We met there, in Molo Church. He toured me around and promised me to accompany me in Guimaras Island. Hello, Kuya Jarel! If you are reading this, I really want to thank you for the sudden trip! 🙂

Molo Church was near Molo Plaza and Molo Mansion. My friend and I spent the afternoon here. We ate Pansit Molo, then tried their Halo-halo, and all these for only P250 only. Also, we enjoyed taking photos at Molo Museum. It was SM owned now, as they converted it to Kultura, where people buy souvenirs. We ended the day by walking along the famous esplanade of Iloilo City.

 

Day 2 – Morning, Guimaras

I was so lucky to meet my friend here, who had been living in Iloilo for several years. Our last meeting was in 2015 (?).

Guimaras is budget friendly. A boat going there only costs 15PHP. To tour around the island, you need to rent a tricycle, that costs 1,000 – 1,500PHP. It depends on the barker.

Here’s where I went to Guimaras.

  1. Jordan Municipal Hall.
  2. The Smallest Plaza
  3. The Guimaras Standee
  4. Tasted Mango Pizza
  5. The Mango Farm (and Research Center ata)
  6. Trappist Monastery
  7. Guisi Lighthouse
  8. Alubihod Beach

For me, Guimaras served as an island for solo travelers like me. Charot. It is an ideal side trip. If given enough time, I would love to stay overnight and wait for the sunrise here.

Since this post is written late, I can’t put to words how majestic the place is. For me, it’s certainly one of a kind.

After roaming around Guimaras, we headed back to the main city. We passed by the Jaro Cathedral. It is also one of a kind. Its beauty is outstanding. We also strolled around the old houses in the city proper. I must say, every single structure is amazing.

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After a quick city trip, my friend and I went to SM Iloilo, where a shuttle going to the airport awaits. I have so much to say, friends/readers, but I guess I have to zip my mouth until this chapter. There’s so much to look forward to my next trip. 🙂

 

TRAVEL

Kreatib Hub + Cafe in Antipolo City

Few months ago, I posted a blog about a budget trip in Antipolo City because I will never get bored of what this city can offer. Yesterday, Sunday, my friend and I explored it one more time to see the newest attraction.

We visited a newly opened coffee shop in Antipolo City. It is Kreatib Hub + Cafe.

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It is one tricycle away from Antipolo Cathedral, Pinto Art Museum, or Shopwise in Sumulong Highway, Antipolo City. It is in the second floor on the building facing Caltex.

Creative Hub and Cafe Indeed.

Upon entering, I’ve noticed all the fancy and artsy stuff that they are selling. They are living the name of their shop. It is indeed a hub for creative people. There are different stuff that you can buy, from artsy stuff to trendy clothes.

 

There is a huge space for dining. The food in their menu is affordable. They offer hot or iced coffee, frappes, ensaymada of different flavors, Baked Mac as their only pasta in their menu, and green tea.

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Recommended? YES!

Some group of artists gather and meet in thus hub to pursue their endeavor related to art. Some use this hub for their workshops. You can even rent the whole cafe if you need to. Also, they do have a space for board games, and painting/drawing/coloring.

This cafe is also good for freelancers. They offer plug, and wifi connection. They also have washroom. The price is quite affordable. You can prepare 250php for a quick merienda here.

 

Do you have other recommendations? Let me know.

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TRAVEL

A Trip to Nueva Ecija

I never knew that Nueva Ecija could be a dazzling place to visit. It is filled with history and glorious beauty that encapsulated not only my heart but also my soul.

It was August 11, 2018, when we went here for our annual parish pilgrimage in San Lorenzo Ruiz Parish. For this year, the community decided to travel to Nueva Ecija

Nueva Ecija offered our sight with natural beauty and aesthetics. The green fields welcomed us as we go along the way. Around 500 people enjoyed what Nueva Ecija offered its visitors.

First Stop: Sto. Cristo Parish

Sto. Cristo is located in Nueva Ecija. Their parish has a huge parking lot and can accommodate our ten buses. Nice! Also, this parish has intricate designs. Its details totally reflect its youth. Actually, the parish is only 17 years old.

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Second Stop: St. Francis Parish

St. Francis Parish welcomed us with rain showers. It has an elegant yet simple exterior design. Its interior design says a lot, tbh. Among the three parishes we’ve visited, this is the most detailed church.

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Third Stop: National Shrine of La Virgen Divina Pastora 

This is the most awaited church for us to visit. The national shrine of La Virgen Divina Pastora is in Gapan, Nueva Ecija. It has a mini-museum behind its altar. The youth who told us about its history said the church has been founded in colonial times.

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This pilgrimage happened in the midst of Habagat on August 11, 2018. Still, we survived and spent the day well. Thanks to God, the provider of everything. It is indeed a well-spent weekend. Looking (and hoping) forward for more pilgrimage this year.

 

 

TRAVEL

Trabi Cafe in Binangonan, Rizal

Trabi Cafe in Binangonan, Rizal is just a few minutes away from Taytay, Rizal. Since July 2 was declared a holiday in Pasig City, I took this annual opportunity to explore a new coffee shop within Rizal. If you’ve been my reader/friend, you know how I love discovering new places with intricate details yet budget-friendly.

Upon entering their shop, I fell in love right away with its aesthetics. It stored bicycles as their main theme. Every corner was filled with artsy and fancy designs. The smell of their coffee seemed pretty relaxing, too.

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Look at this counter. Sooo minimal yet elegant.

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Isn’t this artsy?

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Grabe. This is room goals. I want this in my house.

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View of their second floor.

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Still on the second floor.

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My favorite design in Trabi Cafe.

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It’s the little details that count. I love how they promote simplicity and elegance at the same time.

My overall review.

I love the interiors of this cafe. They have Wi-Fi, and sockets for your charger. You can work here. Trabi Cafe is open from 1PM-11PM. This is freelancer-friendly. Also, the menu is within my wallet’s reach. Coffee ranges from 60PHP-120PHP only. We ordered fries (120PHP) good for sharing (2-3), Blended Dark Mocha (120PHP), and Chocolate Cake (180PHP) good for sharing (2-3). You will never regret visiting this shop. Trabi Cafe’s landmark is in Gardenville Resort and Plants.

How to get there? Ride any jeepney going to Binangonan Hiway. Tell the driver to drop you at Gardenville 1 in Tayuman, Binangonan. I guess 500PHP is enough for this trip.

TRAVEL

Cagayan de Oro City Day Trip

After exploring Camiguin Island for one whole day, we went to Cagayan de Oro City. We reached CDO at 6:30AM. We ate our breakfast in Jolibeeeee because we had to make use of their washroom. After that, we rode jeepney going to their “Little Divisoria”. We paid eight pesos.

Where to go to Cagayan de Oro City?

At 7:00AM, we visited Xavier School in CDO.

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The photo above was the church inside. There was a Mass when we passed by this church.

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Hello, there, Saint Francis Xavier! This was taken inside their campus.

After we went to Xavier School, we headed to Saint Augustine Cathedral.

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A closer view of the cathedral.

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The stunning beauty of Saint Augustine Cathedral in Cagayan de Oro City.

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Take a look inside their church. We did not attend the Mass because we had to be at the airport right before 3:00PM.

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We were supposed to visit this park, but it was closed when we arrived there.

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Jeepney is their main mode of transportation. Motorelas are also there.

36511084_2015224268496065_7116280060897656832_n.jpg A view outside the church.

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This was the park outside.

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A bridge that connects the two sides of CDO.

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A view from the river in CDO.

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This was their museum in Cagayan de Oro City. I used to be a water tank built a long time ago. But now, people appreciated it most because it houses a part of CDO’s culture.

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I wanted to see what’s inside, but it’s Sunday, and it’s closed. It’s inside Xavier School. 😦

 

After wandering around the city, we ate our lunch in Jolilbee, again. Then, headed to Gaisano Mall to buy Pastel. Then, we want back to Agora Market and rode a van going to Laguindingan Airport.

AND THAT’S IT!

We did our best to squeeze everything in our schedule. I had fun! It was surreal and exciting. CDO will be always in my heart because of good food, and good people. I remember the first time we went here. We only spent  800php for our fare, thanks to Cebu Pacific Piso Sale! You should always wait for this promo.