I know you are here for the Top 10 Philippine Travel Destinations for 2014 but to introduce the title,
BAR STORY MUNA:
So I went to the bar one night after a friend’s invitation to join her for a quick drink. When I arrived, her friends were already there and were allintroduced. Music was loud and dance floor beginning to be filled, everyone was either ordering a shot of tequilla or a bottle of beer. Me? I had iced tea.
So there where times when you stop dancing to get to know others in the bar and of course the usual questions emerge- What’s your name? Where did you graduate? What you do? Where do you live?
Can I take you home?
She asked what I do for a living. I told her I wait on tables in one of the comedy bars near in QC Ave. haha (just to make her laugh). Of course, she laughed, really hard, and believed me at first. But of course, I told her that I was just kidding (of which she really didn’t believe). So I told her I’m a full-time traveler. She can test that by naming any province in the Philippines and I would tell something worth going to in the province so would mention. She picked, “Mt. Province.”
“Wow! Of all the 81 provinces of the Philippines, you chose something that is close to my heart lady.” I told her, Mt. Province has Sagada which shares the number 10 spot with Ifugao’s Batad in my “Top 10 Philippine Travel Destinations for 2014.” (I’ll continue the bar story on part 2 of this list.)
10. Sagada and Batad.
Here’s an ode to Sagada I wrote months ago,
The smell of the cold air was a fusion of pine and lemon, I walked pass small cafés and I would not miss the invigorating scent of the arabica coffee brewing. It was a feast to my olfactory nerves. Then a gush of wind blow my neatly-trimmed hair; I looked for a hand to hold on, and poof, there was! Sagada was a place that tickled every part of my body and I enjoyed it. I also revisited their cemetery. I don’t know why but I really fancy visiting niches and reflecting on how fleeting our life is.
Now read my Ode to Batad.
Batad… Batad… I’m so glad we met again. It’s been eight long years since I last saw you. You are teeming with life- green and pristine that day.
It was nice to see you again, your fog-covered-mountains, black pig family, red-mouthed uncles and your famed terraced-rice paddies.
If you haven’t visited any of them, please do. The trees that make these two destinations cool become lesser and lesser as time passes by.
Batad Blog: Batad, What Happened to Your Charm?
A small island province on the north of Misamis Oriental, born out of fire millions of years ago. It’s charm rests on the local and the volcanoes that make this one unique destination. The volcanoes replete in the island are the reason why there are number of waterfalls and cold springs. Don’t be surprised, they even have a potable swimming pool. Underwater charm is also great as I’ve seen a critically endangered hawksbill turtle the last time I did snorkeling at Mantigue island. And do I have to mention the stunningly beautiful sunset at the Sunken Cemetery?
8. Calaguas, Camarines Norte
I lost count of how many times I have been to this famed island. Months ago, it was #1 in Isla Lipana’s search of “Top 10 Emerging PH Tourism Destination.” Beach lovers continue to rave about this island and I can’t blame them. More and more people add this to their travel destination this coming summer of 2014. You should too. Keep posted my Facebook fanpage as we will offer at least 3 trips to Calaguas Island from February-May 2014.
7. Lake Sebu, South Cotabato
Lake Sebu is still an off-the-tourist-radar but things are quickly changing because infrastructure wise, it has lots of resorts and inns to choose from. I’m sure that tourists will flock this site 2-3 years from now. Either you are a nomad with a backpack or a tourist with 2-3 luggages you will surely enjoy the experience.
A visit to the National Living Treasure awardee, Be Lang Dulay, is definitely a must when in Lake Sebu. Her handicraft is like the stone carvings you see on the walls of Angkor Wat only depicted on a weaving called T’nalak, a cloth waved using abaca fiber. On a T’nalak cloth one would easily see the patterns that surrounds a life of each T’boli tribe. These weavings are unique to each other since they are weave according to the dreams of the master weaver.
We will start offering tours here this 2014. Watch out!
If you are dreaming of going to Batanes then you should add this charming province too. Every Filipino should step on this province even just once. If safety is your concern, I would say that Bongao, Tawi-Tawi is my second safest place in Mindanao, Davao City being #1. What I love about Bongao, Tawi-Tawi is it’s color- vibrant and alive, bustling with life from the colors of their public utility tricycles to the color of their clothes.
Hey traveler, please pay a visit. People there speak, eat, drink, cloth differently but looks like you. It’s like visiting another country in the Philippines.
Always visit the sidebar of this website as I’m planning to do a second tour in Tawi-Tawi this 2014.
See Numbers 5-1 here: Top 10 Philippine Travel Destinations for 2014 (Part 2 of 2)
Bonus: Cantilan. I actually want to make it a secret but since you read this far, might as well share to you a secret. Do your research if you want to know more.