• Philippines,  Travel

    Two weeks in Bohol

    Last May I went to Bohol for some R&R (they call it self-care these days, I guess). It was a much-needed two-week break from being “over-peopled” and it was also a chance to get some art/work done in a new environment. It wasn’t my first time in Bohol. I was there last year for my friend’s wedding and I found Panglao island just beautiful: I decided to go back to Bohol when I was choosing where to go for vacation. I chose Bohol because it had the right combination of elements I was looking for in a working vacation: it should be a place I’ve been to before so I can…

  • Philippines,  Travel

    Calaguas, an unspoiled beach destination for the Boracay-weary

      I’m a contributing writer for lifestyle and travel website When In Manila and I wrote this piece on a remote, undeveloped beach in a province in the Philippines. Sharing this with my readers (all three of them)— despite the “third-worldliness” of this country, I love living in the Philippines and places like Calaguas being within reach is just one of the reasons why. * * * When in Manila, ask any urban-dweller about the best beach in the country and you are guaranteed a popular answer: Boracay. And why not? Boracay’s blindingly white powder-fine sand and its clear, azure waters have spoilt us Filipinos. The Philippines’ top tourist destination…

  • Philippines,  Travel,  Travel journal

    Bacolod travel journal

    Two trips in three weeks! Eagle-eyed readers (all two of them) might’ve seen my previous Wordless Wednesday entry and assumed I was traveling. Indeed, I was! I was in Seoul, South Korea last week but before I can get to that, I have yet to post a blog entry of a trip that came a couple of weeks before– Bacolod city, in the Visayan province of Negros Occidental, Philippines. People go to Bacolod primarily for the annual MassKara festival (mass = many, cara (Spanish) = face, maskara (Tagalog) = mask), a street festival filled with colorful smiling masks and costumed street dancers. There are dozens of similar festivals in the…

  • Philippines,  Travel,  Travel journal

    Illustrated travel journal: Sagada, Mt. Province, Philippines

    (Tip: you can click on the journal pages to view a bigger version) The inside front cover of my travel journal While having breakfast with my cousin one day while on vacation in Japan, I brought up the topic of travel blogs. My cousin Miki, three years younger than I, is an avid traveler and has been all over Asia, the US, and Europe, as well as our own country, the Philippines. Miki’s a talented writer and has a flair for photography as well, so I thought she’d be great at putting up a blog of her travels. “I always say I’ll write about my trips,” she said. “But I…