itinerary

Batanes [7days / 7 nights]

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I was sorting my files today and saw notes from our trip to Batanes so I decided to write something to reminisce and at the same time to be able to help others in planning for their trip. It was sort of DIY tour, thanks to other’s blog post where I got all the ideas and places that we planned to visit.

I’ve been wanting to go back since we came back from our vacation in Batanes 1 year and 10 months ago – yes, that long ago. ūüôā

We went there January 2015, but we booked our flight as early as April of 2014! I bought my round trip ticket ¬†for PhP 8,253.00 – thanks to PAL’s ‘seat sale’.

In our 7 days/7 nights in the northernmost part of the Philippines, we stayed in five different places. Why? Because we wanted our itinerary to be flexible enough to accommodate last minute changes in our plans given the unpredictable weather, plus we wanted to try the homestay. Turned out it was not a bad idea after all.

We booked our first two nights (Dive Batanes) ahead of time because we know for sure that we want to roam around Batan. For the¬†third night, we did not book a hotel because it will depend whether we are going to Sabtang or Itbayat. Initially we were planning to go Sabtang first¬†because of their festival. However, when we were inquiring for the trip to Itbayat,¬†the locals were suggesting to go there instead while the weather is still good.¬†And it was a right decision to follow them since they are the ones who knows when is the best time to cross the sea to go to Itbayat. So, we spent overnight in Itbayat (Nanay Cano’s Lodge) after a nerve wrecking 3-hour boat ride trip to the island. There we hired a tour guide and tricycle. We went back to Dive Batanes on our fourth night.The following day (fifth) we had half day tour in Sabtang guided by the tricycle driver that we met in Batan. We hired a tricycle to help us go around the island while Kuya Romy described each of the places that we visited. After our tour, we then stayed in the humble home of the Pajudpud family. After we settle in our room, we just went out for a stroll and dinner and ended the night early to rest. The next morning (sixth), we were supposed to have our South Batan tour, however because of the heavy rain, we decided to just cancel it. So we just tried to head to¬†our home for that night – Rapitan Di Vasay. It is like an ancestral house that was well maintained and turned into a bed and breakfast. We came a little bit too early, i think. We had to wait for the caretaker to arrive so that we could get in and settle. Good thing there was a store and a barbeque stand nearby so we just had snack while waiting.

On our seventh day, we got up early and Kuya Romy fetched us to go to the airport. We got our bags inspected, checked-in, then waited for boarding. (Un)fortunately, the wind was strong that morning so they had to delay the flight for a bit, until one of the staffs announced that the flight is still on however, they have cut down the number of passengers. It immediately popped into my head that what if we just volunteer to stay for another day, but I also immediately changed my mind and told myself and my husband that we’ll just wait and see. So, several minutes passed by, and a lot of people were having conversation on the next steps until another announcement came in. Apparently there were people who requested if they could take the flight because of important commitments. We even had Fr. Orbos on the same flight. The staff then asked if there were people who are willing to be bumped off so others may take the flight.It took us a few minutes until they said they needed two more to volunteer, and so we raised our hands and said with all smiles that we’ll stay without knowing yet what would be deal.

We were lucky that when we volunteered to stay, our hotel accommodation (Shanedel’s Inn), our lunch, dinner, and breakfast, and airport shuttle we’re all care of PAL. All these PLUS a round trip ticket to any local destination. ūüôā

I think the stars aligned so that we can get one more day in Batanes and have a chance to tour South Batan! We called Kuya Romy right away and told him where we’re staying so he can pick us up and start the tour.

And that’s it! That’s our week-long adventure in the beautiful islands of Batanes!

Batan Island

 

Sabtang

Itbayat

Where we stayed in Batan:

  • Dive Batanes: ~2000/night (booked via agoda)
  • Pajudpud Homestay: 350.00/person/night (we learned this¬†with the help from Kuya Romy)
  • Rapitan Di Vasay: ~2500/night (booked via e-mail)
  • Shanedel’s Inn and Caf√© (FREE! – accommodation c/o PAL)
  • Octagon Bed and Dine – We did not technically stayed here, but this was our go to place for dinner or lunch on the days that we did not have a tour. They have a good internet connection compared to the other places.

Where we stayed in Itbayat: 

  • Lodging: Cano‚Äôs Lodge – 250/person/night
DAY AREA PLACES NOTES
Day 1-2 North Batan Basco Town Proper Lodging:
    Tukon Church (Mt. Carmel Chapel) Dive Batanes: ~2000/night (via agoda)
    Fundaction Pacita Pajudpud Homestay: 350.00/person/night |
Contact #: 09072828642 , 09151521553
    PAGASA Weather Station ‚Äď Basco Rapitan Di Vasay: ~2500/night (breakfast not included)
e-mail:info@rapitandivasay.com
    Santo Domingo Cathedral (Basco) Shanedel’s Inn and Caf√© (accommodation c/o PAL)
    Batanes Provincial Capitol  
    Batanes Municipal Hall Tricycle Driver: Romy Merida |
Contact #: 09381592721, 09175254030
    Naidi Hills (Basco Lighthouse + Bunker Cafe) Tricycle Fare: ~50.00
    Vayang Rolling Hills Bike Rental: 25.00/hour or 100.00/day
    Chadpidan Boulder Beach Guide map
       
Day 3-4 Itbayat Chinapoliran Port Lodging: Cano’s Lodge Р250/person/night
    Mt. Karoboban View Deck Tour Guide: Kuya Toto | Contact #: 09198983146
    Town Proper Tour Guide Fee (1000) + Tryk (2000)
    Paganaman Port Lunch: 200/person (arranged by Tour Guide)
    Torongan Cave Dinner: 200/person (arranged by Tour Guide)
    Torongan Hills Boat Fare: M/B Veronica – 450.00/person (2-3hours)
    Lake Kavaywan  
    Rapang Cliffs  
    Nahili Votox ¬†http://www.traveling-up.com/travel-guide-itbayat-batanes/¬†
       
 
Day 4 North Batan walk/bike around the town proper time to relax and rest from the tour
       
Day 5 Sabtang (Day Tour) Tour Guide: Romy Merida
    Savidug Village Tour Guide Fee: (1000)¬† + Tryk Service (800)
    St. Thomas Aquinas Chapel Sabtang Tourism Fee: 200/person
    Savidug Idjang Boat Fare: 75.00/person (~30mins)
    Tinyang Viewing of Pacific Ocean Lunch: 300/person (arranged by tour guide)
    Chavayan Village  
    Morong Beach and Mayahaw Arch  
       
Day 6 North Batan walk/bike around the town proper first attempt to tour South Batan got canceled due to non-stop raining
       
Day 7 South Batan Tour Chawa View Deck Tour Guide: Romy Merida
    Mahatao Boat Shelter Port Tour Guide Fee (including tryk): 1500
    San Carlos Borromeo Church  
    Tayid Lighthouse  
    Racuh A Payaman  
    Uyugan Town  
    Old Naval Base and Alapad Hill  
    Uyugan Town‚Äôs Song-song Ruins  
    House of Dakay in Ivana  
    Old Spanish Bridge  
    Honesty Coffee Shop  
    Ivana Church (San Jose de Obrero Church)  
    Port of Ivana  
       
Day 8 Back to Manila    
       

6-Day Itinerary: Siem Reap-Phnom Penh-Ho Chi Minh City

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Below is our the actual itinerary that we had in our 6nights-6days trip to Cambodia and Vietnam.

Our daily budget (starting Day¬†1) is 142USD. It was actually more than enough for 2 persons if we’ll only consider the essentials – food, entrance fees, transpo fare. But, of course, who wouldn’t buy some souvenirs, right? Still, I’d say it’s more than enough. 100USD is a safe budget.

Day 0:

  • 2155H touchdown SR
  • 2300H Dinner in a nearby local eatery since Bou Savy only accepts dinner order until 9 or 10pm

Expenses:
– 5.00USD (Dinner)

Day 1:

  • 0500H Met with Mr. Pheak (tuktuk driver) hoping to witness the famous Angkor Wat sunrise.
  • 0730H Back to Bou Savy Guest House for breakfast
  • 0830H Temple Adventure! Some of the temples we went to (or maybe just passed by):
    • Angkor Wat
    • Baksei Chamkrong
    • Baphuon
    • Angkor Thom South Gate
    • Bayon
    • Ta Prohm
    • Terrace of the Elephants
    • Phimeanakas
  • 1400H Lunch at Ta Prohm
  • 1800H around this time we’re back at the hotel and decided that we need to rest our legs after a day full of adventure

Expenses:
– 15.00USD (Tuktuk)
– 40.00USD (20USD/pax 1-Day Temple Tour Pass)
– 30.00USD (15USD/pax elephant ride)
– 6.00USD (Dinner at the hotel)

Day 2: 

  • 1000H Biked around the city. Below are some of the places that we went to
    • Preah Prohm Rath Monastery
    • Old Market
    • Central Market
    • Royal Palace
    • National Museum (we didn’t go inside)
    • Lucky Mall Grocery (because it started raining¬†and this is where we bought Three Corners coffee :))
    • after that we went back to the hotel because our clothes are wet
  • 1700H We just tried our luck if we can still make it to the Cambodian Cultural Village. If we only knew how big and nice the place was, we would have go there at least 2 hours earlier so we don’t have to rush going to each of the spot in the village. Good thing, we were still able to catch the main show that night. CCV is a great place to visit to know¬†SR in a few hours IF you have very limited time. CCV capped off our Siem Reap tour.

Expenses:
– 4.00USD (Bike rental at the hotel, 2USD each)
– 6.00USD (Drinks at BluePumpkin)
– 10.00USD (Lunch at Happy Herb Pizza)
– 30.00USD (Tour at Cambodian Cultural Center – 15USD/pax)
– 6.00USD (Dinner at the hotel)
– XX.XXUSD for souvenirs ūüôā

Day 3: 

  • 0700H or 0800H (Can’t remember what time we started) Travel to Phnom Pehn
  • 1430H Arrived at Monsoon Hotel
  • 1530H Tour Royal Palace + sight seeing¬†around the area (there’s a lot to see by the way) and had some food trips
  • 2000H Night Market

EXPENSES:
– 24USD (12USD/pax Mekong Bus SR to PP)
– 3USD (Tuktuk from bus terminal to Monsoon Hotel)
– 13USD (Entrance to Royal Palace)
– XX.XXUSD (for our food trips and souvenirs)

Day 4: 

  • 0700H¬†Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum
  • 1330H Travel from PP to HCM
  • 2230H Arrived at Aries Hotel

EXPENSES:
– 17USD (Tuktuk)
Р6USD (3USD/pax Choeung Ek Genocide Museum)
– 14.5USD (Lunch at Lemongrass, Phnom Penh)

Day 5:

  • 0830H Breakfast at Aries Hotel
  • 0930H¬†BŠļŅn Th√†nh Market
  • 1300H Fine Arts Museum – Ho Chi Minh City
  • 1420H Highlands Coffee
  • 1630H The General Post Office / The Notre Dame Cathedral
  • 1650H¬†ThŠļ£o cŠļßm vi√™n S√†i G√≤n (Saigon Zoo and Botanical Gardens)
  • 1720H Bitexo Financial Tower

EXPENSES:
– 400000.00VND (200K VND/pax Entrance to Bitexo Financial Tower)
– 16000.00 (8K VND/pax Entrance to Saigon Zoo)
– XX.XXUSD (for our food trips and souvenirs)

Day 6: 

  • 0830H Start of Mekong River Tour (We left our luggage in the hotel because we had to early check out as we are going to the tour)
  • 0430H End of Mekong tour
  • 2000H On our way to the Airport for our flight back to MNL

EXPENSES:
– XX.XXUSD/VND (food, cab fare, souvenirs – sorry i didn’t seem to take notes of our expenses right when we arrived at HCMC)

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La Union – Ilocos Norte – Ilocos Sur 3-Day Trip Itinerary

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Sharing our super tight itinerary for our northern Luzon adventure. ūüôā

Day

Activity Time Amount
Day 1 Cubao (Partas Terminal РDeluxe Type Bus) to San Fernando, La Union 10:30pm Р2:30am 475.00/pax
¬† Stayed at Plaza Hotel¬†just to sleep¬†(2 single beds/room with fan; common toilet and bath (1 for male, 1 for¬†female))¬†I won’t really recommend this hotel. 2:45am – 8:00am 500.00/room
¬† Tricycle from plaza to¬†Thunderbird Resorts¬†Driver made us decide how much we’ll pay. 8:00am – 8:20am 100.00/4pax
  Day Trip at Thunderbird Resorts, Poro Point (1000.00/pax ; 750.00 consumable; we availed buffet breakfast 680.00) 8:30am Р1:00pm 1000.00/pax
  Thunderbird Resorts to Partas Terminal (few blocks away from town plaza) via Thunderbird Resorts shuttle (Avanza) 1:00pm Р1:20pm 300.00/trip
  Bus (Partas) ride from San Fernando, La Union to Laoag town proper 2:45pm Р8:45pm 356.00/pax
  Bus (GMW) ride from Laoag to Gaoa 9:30pm Р11:30pm 132.00/pax
  Tricycle ride from Gaoa Hi-way to Kapuluan Vista Resort, Pagudpud (Called Kapuluan Vista Resort upon leaving Laoag to contact a tricycle driver to fetch us) 11:30pm Р11:45pm 100.00/trip
  Check-in at Kapuluan Vista Resort (Dorm-type room : 2 single beds + fan; common toilet and bath (1 for male, 1 for female); inclusive of breakfast)  11:45pm 1300.00/room
Day 2 Breakfast (included in the room rate) 7:45am – 8:30am —-
¬† Blue Lagoon (15 minute walk from Kapuluan Vista Resort) 9:00am-10:00am —-
  Pagudpud Tour 1(Avanza)

  • -Bantay Abot Cave
  • -Patapat Bridge
  • -Paraiso ni Anton
  • -Kabigan Falls (entrance fee: 20.00 + tour guide fee: 100.00)
  • -Saud Beach (we had lunch at Emohruo resort : 780.00)

We were supposed to go Pagudpud town¬†proper, but we opted not to because it’s getting late

10:45am-3:30pm 2000.00/trip
  Check-out from Kapuluan Vista Resort: Availed Laoag Drop-off (Avanza) to Partas bus terminal with tour

  • -Bangui Windmill
  • -Cape Bojeador (Burgos) Lighthouse
4:30pm – 7:00pm 2500.00/trip
  Bus (Partas) ride from Laoag to Vigan 7:30pm Р9:35pm  
¬† Tricycle ride from Partas terminal to¬†Grandpa’s Inn 9:30pm – 9:45pm 50.00/trip
¬† Check-in at Grandpa’s¬†Inn (Calesa Room: 2 single and 1 double beds with private toilet and bath,¬†air-con, ref, cabled LCD TV and inclusive of breakfast) ¬†9:45pm 650.00/pax
¬† Dinner at Caf√©¬†Uno/Kusina Felecitas in Grandpa’s Inn 10:00pm – 11:00pm ¬†
¬† Walked around Calle¬†Crisologo 11:00pm – 12:00am —-
Day 3 Breakfast at Grandpa’s¬†Inn (included in room rate) 7:30am – 8:30am —-
  Vigan KalesaTour: (150.00/hour)

  • -Padre Burgos House (National Museum)
  • -Syquia Mansion
  • -Crisologo Museum
  • -Bell Tower and San Agustine Church
  • -Hidden Garden
  • -Burnayan Factory
  • -Baluarte
8:40am – 11:40am 450.00
¬† Merienda + Pasalubong time 12:00pm – 1:40pm —-
¬† Check-out from Grandpa’s Inn (we had to¬†pay an extra charge because of exceeding¬†chek-out time) 2:00pm 150.00/hour
¬† Tricycle ride from Grandpa’s Inn to¬†Partas Terminal 2:00pm – 2:15om 50.00/trip
¬† Bus (Partas – regular) ride¬†from Vigan to Partas Pasay Terminal (yes! it’s 10 hours!) 2:30pm – 12:45am 661.00/pax
       

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Day 1

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Sharing my itinerary from my KL trip. Will add pictures soon..

Time Activities Expenses Notes
0630H

Going to Clark from Philtranco Pasay Terminal

P450.00
1105H

ETD from Clark-Diosdado Macalapagal International Airport

P1620.00 +600.00

Travel Tax & Other fee

1435H

Arrival at Kuala Lumpur International Ariport

1520H

KL Sentral Bus (Yellow): KLIA to KL Sentral

RM14.00 2-way ticket; RM8.00 if 1-way ticket only
1630H Check-in: My Hotel @ Sentral P3235.55 booked via Agoda.com
1700H Walk around KL Sentral station and got a ticket for HopOnHopOff tour RM38.00 valid for 24 hours
1730H Going to KLCC via KL Rapid train RM1.60
Walk around KLCC Suria mall
1830H Dinner: Little Penang, KLCC Suria mall RM16.25 I know, I know it’s a bit expensive. I had no choice I was so hungry ’cause my last meal was my breakfast before I left PH
Stayed outside the mall waiting for the sky to get dark; took pictures of Petronas Towers
Walked around the area, I was trying to go to KL Tower by walking, then I got tired and decided to go back to KL Sentral
2030H I asked a lady (she said she’s Chinese studying English in KL) if KL Sentral is just near, and she said yes it’s a 10-min walk and she’s also heading there
2100H I walked with her‚Ķwalked some more‚Ķand more, I didn’t mind the long walk because I enjoy seeing the busy streets, until I noticed we’re already in Bukit Bintang area
I just thought that we probably didn’t understand each other well
She told me directions how I can go to Time Square, and then we parted ways
I was actually too tired that even if Time Square is very near, I decided to just go up the train station and back to hotel
2130H Train Bukit Bintang to KL Sentral via Monorail RM2.10
2145H Got back to the hotel but since internet connection is still not working I went out
Stayed and had coffee at Old Town White Coffee just beside the hotel RM4.35 Iced White Coffee
Went back to my room (not sure of the time) to charge my phone and camera, found out that my camera charger’s adater doesn’t fit
Went out again and was able to buy an adapter in a nearby retail store RM 3.80
2300H Back to my room; fixed my stuff then off to dream land