Exploring Kyoto + Osaka, the DIY Way (Day 3)

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After 2 full days in Kyoto (with side trip to Nara), we are now ready and excited to explore our home base, Osaka! Since AJ and I are both history buffs, we dedicated our 1st day to learn about Osaka's history.  And the best way to do that is to tour Osaka Castle! Touring the castle grounds alone would already take the whole morning, with approximately 60,000 square ... READ MORE

Exploring Dumaguete, the DIY Way (Day 1)

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Thanks to Cebu Pacific's Piso Fare sale last June, AJ and I were able to take a much-deserved 4-day vacation and we chose to spend it in Dumaguete City, the City of Gentle People, but more famously known for the following: Apo Island, Silliman University and the numerous dive and snorkeling site around the province. Another equally good reason to visit Dumaguete is its easy ... READ MORE

The Art of Juan Flores, Master Sculptor

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Woodcarving (sculpture in wood) is one of the oldest surviving arts in the Philippines, and while most artisans in woodcarving are found in Paete, Laguna, one of our celebrated wood sculptors actually hailed from Betis, Pampanga. Juan Flores, considered as the Father of of Pampanga Sculpture and Woodcarving,  was highly recognized here and abroad during his time because of ... READ MORE

A Very Old House in Cebu

Despite being a highly urbanized city, Cebu City nurtures one of the oldest ancestral homes in the Philippines, and perhaps the oldest Chinese home outside China.    AJ and I were able to visit this quiant ancestral house last Easter Sunday and, being the only visitors at that time, it felt more like a private tour! Welcome to the Yap-San Diego Ancestral House/Museum. You ... READ MORE

Exploring Bohol

We spent only 1 full day and 1 full night in Bohol (not including the travel time to and from Cebu), but still we were able see most of what the island province has to offer.   The secret to doing that is to manage your time properly and to plan your itineraries well.   The latter is very important because most tourist destinations in Bohol are located at different towns so try ... READ MORE

Day 2 in Ilocos: Laoag and Pagudpud (continuation)

In my last post about our 2nd day in Ilocos, I mentioned about Paoay's best secret.  It's none other than their famous sand dunes and Kuya Jeremy really urged us to give it a try as it's an experience that we will never forget. When we made a brief stop over at the Paoay Lake Viewdeck, Kuya Jeremy by then has sold us the idea of seeing the sand dunes and going for the ... READ MORE

Day 2 in Ilocos: Laoag and Pagudpud

Our 2nd day in Ilocos was spent at Laoag and Pagudpud.   The travel to Laoag from Vigan was approximately 2 hours and we were arrived in Laoag shortly before 8 a.m. A visit to Laoag won't be complete without seeing the Paoay Church, famous for its distinct architecture highlighted by the enormous buttresses on the sides and back of the building (from Wikipedia). Next we ... READ MORE

Day 1 in Ilocos: Touring Vigan

(Warning:  this post is picture heavy) We have been planning for our Ilocos trip as early as last month but the details were only finalized about a week before our actual travel (two weeks ago).   Many thanks to my boss who owns the My Vigan Home Hotel in Vigan, our stay and trip to the tourist spots in Vigan as well as in some parts of Laoag and Pagudpud have been taken ... READ MORE