Sunday, June 17, 2018

Chasing Summer Skies

Rainy season is just around the corner but here I am reminiscing summer times with some blogs from the beach!

Summer belongs to you!

Last April we got invited by my aunt to Pico de Loro, which is somewhat of an exclusive beach resort, complete with its color-coded wrist tags that gave me some dystopian feels.

Don't be fooled, these things are waterproof.. (and probably used to track you)

I'll be suspicious of the fancy lobby chandelier too...

There's a hotel in the compound but the place mostly consists of condo units with which the owners themselves rent out to guests.

Talk about energy efficient hallways...

The room's actually good for 7 people...

Since we're considered as "accompanied" guests (meaning the unit owner was there to meet us), we got to enjoy the fancy pool at the Beach Club which leads to the more private part of the beach.

Nothing better than an Infinity Pool <3

A private sanctuary...

The highlight of this weekend getaway however was the Cove Tour, which I read about before going on the trip. Here's a video and some of the oddly shaped rock formations around the coast:


Turtle Island
Elephant Cliffside

I also got the chance to swim with the fishes since snorkeling was part of the tour; the water was so clear!


The tour lasted for at least an hour and once back on land, we did a quick wash down before rushing off to see the sunset.


View from atop St Therese Chapel

After that, we did a little exploring before lights out. If you're a night owl kind of person, I'd suggest bringing something to entertain yourselves since most of the facilities close at around midnight.

Night out, Lights out

The morning came with us needing to pack and prepare to depart, but since check out was not until 12 noon, we decided to have a morning stroll around the area.

It does give off a cozy countryside vibe...
It's a condominium world...
That's the Country Club right there...

We also decided to see the more public parts of the resort including Pico Beach and the Country Club, which was like the Beach Club although it wasn't anywhere near the beach area.

Probably ain't peak season yet...

Just near the end...

The Country Club, usually boasts lots of people...

You might also encounter the Fish Feeding area just near the Country Club:


Fishes have schedules too you know...

All in all, it was a refreshing weekend, and Pico de Loro did not disappoint when it came to the beauty of the place. Although you'll probably have to look pass the expensiveness of it and ignore the (in my opinion) discriminating wrist tags that were surprising durable; probably sturdier than most relationships anyway.

A bit wrinkled but still holding on... :)))









Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Gaming Brought Me Back to Life

When you've got time to kill between movie schedules, and the videos to prove it, you later find yourself back to blogging about it.


Yeah I know it's been months since my last blog, but I'll probably focus on blogging about occasional travels mostly now; with an 8-5 job, I feel like a little bit of wanderlust can heal my already depleted energy.

Truer words have never been said...

I still get to read books though not as often as I should, since I get sleepy in the midst of it, but gaming is another way for me to escape reality,  especially if it's in VR.


I couldn't help myself like, who doesn't love dinosaurs? 'Cuz here I am excited for Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom that's coming out this June!

I can relate to Owen's "oh $h1t" face though...

I also got curios about playing The Lab, which had these multiple games, since I first saw it in a video advertising the first of VR gaming. (You can see the video in my previous game reviews..)


I tried the Archery one first since I'm a sucker for stuff like that, but damn couldn't I feel my right arm afterwards.


The last of the games were just filler for the gaming time I had left, but it was fun nonetheless. Wish I could have fun times like this more often though.








Sunday, June 11, 2017

What Travel Delays Does to Somebody Like Me

It all started with the rain during the early morning of our last day at Ilocos, then came the blackout in our homestay's vicinity. Now I really didn't mind the part with raining since I was only half awake, but it did get really humid in our room with the lack of the AC running, so I was a little grumpy with the next turn of events.


Turns out the rain lasted until later in the morning, enough to delay our departure from Ilocos to our next itinerary. All we were left to do was watch the waves from our homestay's balcony while waiting for the rain to stop.


The rain stopped an hour later than our designated time of departure, but we still had time for one last photoshoot at the Pagudpud Arch Sign.

Feelin' the love here, guys...

We later stopped over at Laoag to have breakfast, and were able to take pictures of the Sinking Bell Tower nearby; while also buying souvenirs from the local fair.

It is said, it still continues to sink 'til this day...
Hand-painted, customized...


bracelets! :D


If you think our tour would be smooth sailing from there, then wrong dead wrong. Turns out we got a flat on the tire, and the driver had to change it; so we were stuck for another good hour in the middle (on the side...) of the highway going to Vigan.


After that little hiccup on the road, we went straight to Chavit's Baluarte, which was kinda like a mini zoo. Once there, we opted to ride the shuttle since it was too hot to walk out in the sun without the chance of suffering from a heat stroke.


What's up with the dinosaur design??? This ain't no Jurassic Park...


Took a few days to get that stamp off... -__-"


That's my mom on the right, my grandma in the middle, then me ;)


Disappointment is an understatement when it comes to describing this place. Just a rich (old) guy's way of showing off the animals he hunted for sport; no lions here kids, not the living kind anyway... Probably just a guy picturing himself as a horse. (Which you can see has a portrait on the 2nd floor of the Gallery at the end of the tour...) 


Those portraits must be like certificates of his trophies or something...

Reminds me of that scene with Gaston from Beauty & the Beast...

I've heard about bear rugs, but crocodiles???

Lastly, we went to Calle Crisologo in Vigan City, which I would consider an overrated place. Honestly, I know it's supposed to be a historical place of old, but with all those stores and some fastfood chains, you wouldn't have the "stepping into another time" kind of feels. (not that I want to go back to the Spanish times anyway... *shivers*...)


Exactly where is the view...?

Wish I could say the same though...

Although, if you're looking for a place like Calle Crisologo, I'd suggest you just go to Intramuros here in Manila. Since during my 4 years of college in The Walled City, I have yet to see a surge of tourists like the ones in Vigan.

Taken at the Parian: that's me (grey shirt) during my 2nd year in college... (that's my cousin in the red shirt...) ©2013

So I guess that's how my last day of tour in Ilocos ended, not really bad overall if I consider the fun I had during the first 2 days of my stay. Maybe Vigan used to be a "place of old", before consumerism decided to settle in, who knows... I'm not really one for the crowds.

Take this Black Friday Sale GIF for example... O.O

This ends my travel blog series of my Ilocandia Adventure, maybe next time I'll focus on the natural wonders our planet has to offer. Until next my travel, bye! ;D




Sunday, June 4, 2017

Push & Pulled by the Waves

The thing about waking up early is that you don't feel rushed; you feel fresh and ready to face the day. (I can't really understand people who get to sleep like the dead when they're in a different place...) Since we were already ready before the said call time of 7AM, we decided to take pictures by the beach just outside the homestay.


On the way to shore...

Rise and Shine!


Enjoying the view...

Our itinerary for the day mostly had something to do with bodies of water, so we opted to dress for the day's activities. Patapat Viaduct would be our first stop.

There I am!

Can't help but be part of it all...

The 2nd destination for the day was called Paraiso ni Anton Waterfalls, which had a shrine built on top of it since the water was said to have miraculous qualities.

Could this be what the Stairway to Heaven might look like...?

Bantay Abot Cave was next and I couldn't help but waddle in the water since it was getting hot around that time.

But first, you gotta get down from up here...

Cool down a bit (it's hot on the way down..)
Now how about going up there...

Just rocks and a view...
One last picture before leaving...

It was near noon when we arrived at Blue Lagoon beach where we were given time to swim and eat lunch there.

Under the heat of the sun...
Found a cottage! (which costs 700php in total...)
I gotta say that it was a beautiful sight since the sand was fine enough that your feet would just sink, and the water was clear enough that you could see your feet underwater.



You can see the sand too...

After swimming and having lunch, we went for a fast rinse and change of clothes, that we brought, at the paid restrooms nearby. Since we didn't really want our seats at the van to get wet and grainy while we went to our last destination for the day, Kabigan Falls.

I'm ready for a little trekking! :D

Once there, we paid the entrance fee of 30php each and got to meet our guide. The trek to the falls lasted for at least an hour and a half, but you don't have to worry about it being too dangerous since if my 74-year old gradma could do it, then you have nothing to worry about. 


The road ahead... (more on the side actually...)

No time for umbrellas, ladies... ;)



Just climbed up these stairs...

Almost there... I can just feel it...

There it is! Just past the 'stick bridge'...

Once we reached the waterfalls, I could almost say it was worth the trek. Almost. Since there were too many groups people swimming about, you couldn't take a decent picture without them ruining the view, so I guess you could say all we did there was just soak our feet in the water.



Would have looked better without the people though...


Took me a while to get on top of this rock...

Though I can't help but wonder why the trek back to our van seemed more relaxing.



Water for the soul..
Nature really  is so wonderful...
Forever on a loop...

Since Kabigan Falls was our last stop for the day, we got back at the homestay earlier than yesterday; just in time to catch the sunset outside!



Sun's Out!

We stayed outside until the sun went out and decided to explore the nearby beach. We had to go through other homestays in order to get to the main part of Saud Beach, where we did a little star-gazing before heading back to our room.


Just a few resorts away from Cathy's Homestay...


Night at the beach!

Last day at the beach...

We had to pack our things since we'd be checking out in the morning in order to go to our next destination, Vigan City! Little did we know, all the delays started in the early morning. Find out next Sunday if we'd ever get our schedule back on track here at our Ultimate Ilocandia Adventure! ;D