7 People You Should Be With When Travelling


1. The Camera Addict


They do not mind taking your pictures. What’s even great is that, they use DSLR to take good quality photos. They will give you the best angle, lighting, exposure, so that, it would be your next profile photo. They will go beyond the average travelers photography efforts, making it sure that it would be Instagram worthy.

Cons: Carrying too much equipment for the shoot. Longer time in staying in a particular area.


2. The Itinerary Guru


Your trip schedule from sunrise to lights-out are already planned out by this friend. You do not have to worry where to eat, where to go or even how to go there. Everything is already planned. Some of them even have the itinerary made in Excel file or PowerPoint slides.

Several hours are spent to make this itinerary close to perfection, so make sure to acknowledge it.

Cons: They sometimes get cranky when the schedule is not followed.


3. The On-the-Go-er


Sleeping in a hammock? Eating scary local delicacies? Cliff Diving? No Problem! Easy to go with people with no hesitations in saying yes in all the adventures presented to them. No time will be wasted thinking if you guys should do this and that, they will jump right in and ——YOLO!

Definitely not a party pooper!

Cons: They’re very active and chill vacations may not be suitable for them.


4. The Haggler


They are perfect buddies when you go to night market, souvenir shops and local food stalls. They have the mindset that sellers usually have high profit margin, especially to the tourist. They will use their persuasive skills to get their money’s worth. Who knows, maybe the money changer would also give you a higher rate.

Cons: Longer time spent for shopping.


5. The Navigator


Google Maps offline? Tripadvisor? Yes! They have it all! Every travelers need is all in their smart phone. Yup! They remember the route effortlessly, so you are sure you will be back in your hotel in no time! When uncertainty arises, they are quick thinker, optimistic and determined to have a smooth trip. They love to talk to locals, and ask them for stories, directions, and suggestions. They become handy, when you are the shy type person.

Cons: They usually like to walk a lot!


6. The Travel Book-er


Xiexie! Salamat! Makasih! Not only they know some of the phrases of those country, they’ve also read the history of it. You do not need a guide anymore to tell you the history of the Ming Dynasty or how the greatwall of china was built. They will share you all of the stuff they’ve read and learned. They also know some secrets of which place should you guys go to fully appreciate what the country can offer.

Cons: They talk a lot! (which is not usually a bad thing!)


7. The Backpacker


Always overweight? No problem, being friends with backpackers will surely be at your advantage. Group check-in would be your best friend! Backpackers are very particular in what they bring. It may be a light weight towel, ultra-thin jacket, etc. They do not compromise what they bring, instead they buy travel friendly items.

Make sure they didn’t pick the no-baggage option.

Cons: They ask toiletries from you.

Be Involved

Feature Us
Become a Local Guide
Become a Contributor


How to Pack Like A Professional Travel Blogger


My traveling stint took me back more than 20 years ago when I embarked on my first journey to our province. Imagine a 5 or 6 year old kid tasked to bring all of her stuff and be in the mountains for 2 weeks or for the entire summer break [which spans up to 2 months]. Back then, when computers, laptops and cellphones are thing of the future, I had learned the value of taking care of your equipment and valuables above everything else.


However, being exposed to different jobs and interests, while following my passion for the outdoors and also being able to take the Basic Mountaineering Courses, I learned how to pack effectively for all my travels. And that includes everything that I need in my length of travel. Being self contained makes me save money in my travels. Carrying my pack most of the time instead of portering definitely made me save extra money that I can have as a buffer/contigency fund.


Here are some things that we need to understand while packing up:

  1. We are only allowed to carry ⅓ of our total weight. That means, choose a backpack after you had checked your total weight. Most of the backpacks are measured in Liters, not in kilograms, though when roughly translated, 1 KL is equivalent to 1 L. Then again, you have to bear in mind that the human body can lift only ⅓  of our average weight comfortably. So for overnights or 3 day travels, you can definitely carry a 30L or 40L pack snug-fit.
  2. Always make sure to compress your stuff and place bulky ones at the bottom of the pack. It will definitely help if you roll your garments too. Sleeping bags, windbreakers/rainbreakers can be placed in the bottom.
  3. Make a list of the things that you are packing. As a digital nomad, we need to pack out our chargers, laptops, mobile phones, power banks and flash drives so that we won’t miss a thing or two with our created memories. Neatly coil up the wires to prevent from being tangled and always make sure to provide name stickers on your gadgets.
  4. Waterproof all of your stuff. Having a suitcase or a backpack, you can always individually pack it via Ziplocks or use a thick translucent garbage bag to waterproof your stuff. Just line up the inside compartment with the bag to make it waterproof. Unexpected downpours might come when traveling so it is better to be safe than sorry.
  5. Lastly, always share your itinerary with close family and friends. You will never know what lies ahead but it will be better if a person or two would know where you are heading so that they will have an idea whenever emergency situations happen. In my climbs, we would always appoint a person that will check on us from time to time. Someone who has a list of our “In Case of Emergency” contacts. This is very crucial in every travel.


Over the years of traveling and with the help of experience, here are my “things to bring” and my take on how to pack like a professional blogger:



  1. 1 set of decent blouse/polo shirt/slacks/skirt for dinner parties
  2. 1 pair of trek pants [khaki/black ones] can be worn either on formal or informal meetings
  3. 3 pairs of trek shorts
  4. 3 pairs of black leggings
  5. 3 pairs or more of two piece bathing suit
  6. 6 dri fit shirts
  7. 1 long-sleeve  dri fit shirt [this will work
  8. 1 pair of flip-flops
  9. 1 pair of sneakers
  10. 4 pairs of socks [depends on the number of days that you will travel]
  11. 1 pair of black dress socks
  12. 1 pair of dress shoes
  13. 3 pairs or less of undies
  14. 1 microfiber towel [less bulky and dries easily]


Toiletries: These travel sized buddies are packed in one mesh pouch


  1. 1 small bottle of shampoo
  2. 1 small tube of toothpaste and mouthwash
  3. 1 small toothbrush
  4. 1 small sized deodorant
  5. 1 small bar of soap or 1 bottle of shower gel
  6. 1 small tube/bottle of lotion
  7. 1 pack of pantyliner/pads
  8. 1 small bottle of cologne
  9. 1 small bottle of sanitizer/alcohol
  10. dental floss


First Aid Kit: A must have in every travel

  1. cotton buds
  2. cotton balls/squares
  3. Povidone-Iodine Solution
  4. band aids
  5. AntiBacterial Cream
  6. Anti burn ointment
  7. oral meds like paracetamol, anti histamine, pain relievers, anti motility, anti colds, anti vomiting, nasal decongestants, etc [2 tabs/caps for each]
  8. elastic bandage [3x5 in diameter]


Gears: Though I seldom bring this all when I am up in the mountains, still when I travel elsewhere, I bring these.

  1. Camera [either point and shoot or DSLR]
  2. Mobile phone with Camera
  3. Chargers
  4. Power bank
  5. Laptop /Tab
  6. Universal Power Converter
  7. Tripod [optional]
  8. LTE devices/wifi sticks
  9. ear phones/headsets


Packing stuff might differ from one person to another and the list of the”must haves” are endless. It will be always helpful to bear in mind your needs and as well as how prepared you are for the trip. And while you’re at it, do not forget to bring your other essentials like Passport, Visa, pocket money in different currencies [when traveling internationally], a TSA padlock to secure your pack, additional ziplocks and eco friendly bags or perhaps, assault packs [tiny backpacks attached to big outdoor packs].


Another thing to consider is snacking on little proportions the healthy way. Dried fruit and nuts are a great way to fight hypoglycemia while walking around exploring places. And also, always hydrate with water. It helps flush out toxins and maintain a healthy pinkish glow on your skin. It also helps regulate body temperature.


Hope you did learned a lot from this. Happy packing! 🙂







Be Involved

Feature Us
Become a Local Guide
Become a Contributor


6 Guide Questions to Traveling Cheaply

6 Guide Questions to Traveling Cheaply

Traveling is often times branded as a luxury because unless you have deep pockets, it would be such a pain in the wallet to go to places. I’m pretty sure that if we all have that, we probably would’ve been to all of the countries and islands by now. But alas, we have to make do with what we currently have. It is so easy to overspend on something if you don’t keep an eye on your expenses, so here are 6 guide questions to keep in mind in order to travel cheaply.


1. What do I want to see there?





This is a question for your focus on your travel budget, which we already established as a crucial game in traveling. An effective way for you to be conscious about it is thinking about your destination. Focus the largest portion of your budget on what you want to see or experience in that place.  You can also use the holy trinity as a guide for your traveling budget, and that would be (1) accommodation, (2) transportation, and (3) food and drinks. Set aside travel emergency fund as well.


2. Am I traveling to a fancy hotel or not?





This is a question for your accommodation, and more than likely the answer would be the latter. It isn’t bad to get a hotel of your choice,  as your convenience will always be a priority. I’m not forcing you to stay in a sketchy hostel, either. But if you’re going to spend a bigger chunk of your day outdoors, it is more wallet-friendly to scrimp a little on hotels. Remember that you are paying extra for the logos and amenities that you probably can do without.


3. What can I bring with me that I already own?





This is a question on what resources you already have that can minimize your traveling expenses. An example would be carrying around a water bottle with you during walks. Almost every establishments would be willing to refill your bottle so you don’t have to buy another once you’re finished. Other items could be your bag essentials like tissues, snacks, slippers, etc. The price could look little, but it will add up after some time.


4. Does this represent my experience?





This is a question on the souvenirs you’re planning to buy. I admit, I’m partly guilty at taking home mass-produced printed tees, fridge magnets and little trinkets of places I’ve been to. But the way for you to travel cheap is to only bring home things that represent the culture and experience you’ve been through. Not only are you buying just a few things, you also know that your souvenirs has more significance to you.


5. What is this place’s food specialty?



This is a question on what food items are you splurging your money on. Eating out for your three meals could be expensive so you have to choose wisely which of the three. If you can make your own food for breakfast or any meals at your hotel, do it. When you do eat out, ask yourself if you’re going to spend more on drinks, food or dessert. It is also notably wise to eat like a local, for you’re steering clear of commercial restaurants where prices could be jacked up and you’re getting an authentic taste of your destination.


6. Do I really have to go there?





Tourist destinations and capital cities can be quite costly, and that is inevitable in any country. Not to mention thousands of tourists could be with you at the same place, at same time. Of course I cannot tell you not to visit them but you might want to try out some less-travelled spots where the origins of the place (like it’s status, culture and people) are still kept intact and commercialism is not that high. Ask yourself if it’s worth going somewhere where everybody has already traveled to, just for the sake and picture of it.


Be Involved

Feature Us
Become a Local Guide
Become a Contributor


A Trip To The North You’ll Definitely Remember

A Trip To The North You’ll Definitely Remember


What’s a better way to start your Sunday morning than a road trip away from the bustling streets of Manila for a breath of fresh air?


Hey there! I’m Candyd Sia. A marketing student at DLSU who eats anything that crosses her path and will someday travel the whole world. It’s time for a change of scenery and escape your usual stressful city life.  I know it could be scary to explore uncharted territory, so if you’re not geographically inclined like me, you can use this map (or waze) to put you in a little bit of peace. So rise and shine and let’s go on a trip to Antipolo!



Pinto Art Museum, facebook.com


If you don’t want to go through the hassle of waiting for parking, The Pinto Art Museum opens from 9AM-6PM, Tuesday-Sunday. I suggest you get there as soon as it opens, since there’s really no place to park other than on the streets beside the museum. Plus, you can get to take some good shots without having to worry about people being in the background.


Tip: If you’re a student, bring your school I.D and you’ll be able to get your ticket for only P100 instead of the regular rate of P180. If you plan to bring your grandparents with you, the senior citizen rate is P150.


There is also a no food, pets and changing clothes rule upon entering the premises so you better go there with a happy tummy and I hate to say this, but you have to leave your furry friends at home this time.  

Apart from having six galleries, it also has a separate museum for indigenous art and a pinto art gallery. There are also tons of gardens located at different areas where you can see a chapel, an amphitheater, a roof deck where you can see the sunset view and even a pool! Make sure to a lot at least 4 hours, if you plan to take your time to look through each gallery, appreciate the artworks and take those Instagram-worthy photos.



There’s this one gallery that we stumbled upon and its contents were, shall I say, interesting. Watch out for it since it’s pretty easy to miss considering it’s not an open gallery. But of course, the curiosity in me, told me to open the door and explore its contents with wide-eyes. Warning: don’t bring little kids in here since this room contains artworks not suitable for children.  



Bring a fan, umbrella and water or anything to beat the heat since it could get a bit steamy roaming around the whole place, especially when you go outdoors. This is where your fitness level will definitely get tested, but overall, it was a fun and enjoyable experience. Word can’t describe how beautiful and peaceful this place is. You really have to experience it yourself to understand what I’m saying.



After all the walking you’ve done, its time to fuel up and grab some lunch! You can opt to have lunch in the museum since they have their very own Pinto Café, Café Rizal and Café Tan-aw by Peppermill located inside. You can get reservations by calling 986-18-04 since it can get filled up pretty quickly.



@pamfajatin, instagram.com


Address: Number 1, Sierra Madre St. Grand Heights, Antipolo City, Rizal, Philippines
Phone Number: (02) 697-10-15

Opening Hours: Tuesday – Sunday 9:00AM-6:00PM


If you want to go somewhere else and explore Antipolo a little bit further, you can try getting breakfast for lunch at Eggs for breakfast.  I suggest you order the One pan breakfast and Vigan longganisa.




Address: 21 Don Juan Street Villa Cecilia Subdivision, Antipolo, Rizal, Philippines

Phone Number: (02) 213-24-34

Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday 7:00AM-5:00PM


Bonus: If you want to stay at Antipolo a little bit longer. You can opt to visit Cloud 9 to chill and watch the city lights sparkle with the amazing 360° view of the metro.



@zeejbabe, instagram.com



Address: Bgy. Sta. Cruz, Sumulong Highway, Antipolo, 1870, Philippines

Phone Number: (02) 584 3011 

Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday 7:00AM-5:00PM



Photo credits: Candyd Sia

Be Involved

Feature Us
Become a Local Guide
Become a Contributor


Your Ultimate Checklist of Southern Cebu Experiences

Your Ultimate Checklist of Southern Cebu Experiences


Cebu is truly blessed with countless attractions from historical spots, natural wonders, vibrant festivals, and thrilling adventures. There’s just so much that it isn’t enough to see and experience everything in just one visit. Here are some of the South Cebu experiences you shouldn’t miss!



1. Dolphin Watching





There are several spots in the Visayas region where you can see dolphins, and one of the best spots is Cebu. When you try Pescador Island Hopping in Moalboal, this will be your first stop. Witnessing these amazing creatures play in their natural habitat is sincerely a spectacular experience. They usually swim near the water surface early in the morning. But always remember that these dolphins are in the wild and there isn’t a 100% guarantee they’ll show up during your visit.


2. Swimming with Sea Turtles





Another marine creature you’ll love seeing are the sea turtles! There’s a specific area you’ll visit during island hopping where the turtles normally stay for feeding. They look so calm and peaceful while swimming in the clear blue waters of Moalboal. The local guides will help you spot and swim along with the turtles.


3. Sardine Run





Oh, the sight of millions of sardine fish is simply jaw-dropping! The synchronized movements of the sardines against the backdrop of the deep blue water makes a picturesque view. No wonder this spot is popular to scuba and free divers. Even if you’re not into deep diving, you can witness this underwater marvel while snorkelling.


4. Osmena Peak






Catch a magnificent view of the sunrise from the highest peak of the province of Cebu! Found in Dalaguete, Osmena Peak reaches 1,013 masl yet it’s considered a friendly hike and good for beginners. The view up there is a sight you must see when visiting Southern Cebu!


5. White Sand Beaches





There’s always an inner beach bum inside every traveler. Worry not, because you also have several options of white sand beaches for some sweet time under the sun. There’s Basdaku White Beach in Moalboal and Sumilon Island in Oslob.


6. Waterfalls Hopping





There are plenty of beautiful waterfalls in South Cebu. There’s Aguinid Falls where you can climb eight levels of waterfalls. The highest falls in the area is Mantapuyan Falls in Barili. There’s also Tumalog Falls, and of course, the famous Kawasan Falls where you can book a canyoneering trip with local guides.


7. Whale Shark Interaction





Swim with the biggest fish in the sea — butanding! Whale shark interaction is the most unique experience you can find in South Cebu. Tan-awan, Oslob has been very popular for this attraction. Even foreign travelers visit Cebu just to see whale sharks! These marine animals are very friendly and are considered the gentle giants of the sea. Seeing them is an experience you surely can’t miss!


Tell us about your favorite South Cebu experience!


Be Involved

Feature Us
Become a Local Guide
Become a Contributor


Things I Was Thankful For On My Second Hike

Things I Was Thankful For On My Second Hike

I’m back again, and I’m very excited to announce that I have added a new mountain to my list of conquered trails! Two mountains in a month? Just about a week apart? That’s right! Last Saturday, June 19, I had yet another opportunity to climb my second mountain.

A few questions might pop in your head.

Honestly, who has the time to hike a mountain every weekend?

Where do I get the budget?

Which mountain did you climb?

Sadly, I won’t be answering any of those questions directly. But once you finish reading, you won’t even be thinking of finding the answers — you will just want to GO! As soon as you can!

Even if you’ve tried hiking before and decided it “wasn’t your forte”, you will definitely think twice. Believe me, I never thought I would want to hike another mountain after my first, semi-awful experience at Mount Sembrano. It was all a matter of preparation and hitting those girl scout skills that made me enjoy a lot more this time. In my previous article, I’ve complained about what I failed to do and the lessons I’ve gotten from all my mistakes. This time, I came up with several things that I was truly thankful about, the things that kept me going in the long run.



1. Six hours of sleep.


Sweet dreams look like this.

I picked up my own advice from last hike’s error, and I completely willed myself to sleep at 9pm on the dot, in time to rise at 3am. Sleep has never been much of a hindrance to my performance on the trail — I never really felt fatigue because of my lack of sleep, but it was good to not have insomnia that night (and to not be singing Despacito till the wee hours of the morning).


2. Getting warmed up.


Yam, a first time hiker.

Last hike, the team failed to do this crucial step, which is why one of us got a cramp along the way. I led the dynamic stretching routine before we headed up, to which Jecel commented that it was harder than the actual hike. I think it paid off in the end — the first timers, the ones who haven’t hiked in a few months and everyone who joined the mystery hike were all in good condition and didn’t get any cramps along the way (although someone got cramps during the warmup and after the hike).


Nel, an experienced hiker.

At the top, safe and sound.

3. My outfit.


When fellow hikers would look at my so-called costume, they would scratch their heads and ask me if I was feeling hot. My reply: I would feel much hotter without all these protection. I was equipped with a cap, the most comfortable and baggy jogging pants, socks, my Track and Field spikes, arm warmers that looked like they came from iCarly, fluffy gloves, and my Tralulu shirt. It really paid off in the end because I was not getting irritated from any sunburns. I was able to focus on larger problems of the hike (which, in reality, weren’t a lot).


Me, the Pokemon Hunter Bunny and my master.

My wardrobe was also borrowed by Jecel. Here she is wearing my raincoat as protection from the deadly UV rays transmitted from the sun.


4. My 3 liters of water.


Yam has a stick in her hand. I have a water bottle.

I now brought 3 instead of 2! It made all the difference, even if it weighed more. There was a store along the way that sold water though, so I could have still gone without an extra liter. I was also thankful that I didn’t feel the urge to pee even after 7 hours of the hike. When I got a chance to use the bathroom, I didn’t expel much fluid; it was probably because I lost most of the fluid in my body through my sweat.


5. My sunblock.


I finally added this necessity to my backpack! Even though I was already fully covered, the rays of the sun were still fatal and could lead to skin cancer, so I made sure to reapply every so often. I didn’t mind having to take off my gloves every time I needed to reapply because the gloves kept my hands clean and saved the use of wet wipes or alcohol. My sunblock was a big help for those who didn’t even bring caps.


Jecel and I wearing matching skin tones, with Nel in the background.


6. The friends.


Proof that we made it to the summit together!

To be honest, I never expected to vibe with any of the new people I met. I thought we were going to be pure strangers throughout the hike, only interacting with the people we already knew. I was, fortunately, wrong about that. Even if all of us were amateurs at singing, we kept each other alive with our voices. Most of them were also way older than me and although we just met on the same day, but we bonded like we were childhood friends of the same age.


Tralulu airplane symbol!

Since we missed the other interns who weren’t present, Paolo decided to photoshop Micha and himself.

7. The photographer.


Zaine Barron.

Being a photographer sounds like no big deal — especially since every millennial is easily associated with a camera or at least a smartphone camera wherever they go. Add a mountain to the equation and you will realize that this type of skill is no easy feat. Unfortunately, even my fellow photographer intern, Paolo, couldn’t join this week’s mystery hike. I was so thankful that one of our mystery hikers brought a DSLR all the way to the summit. Only a few of us were willing to take pictures with our iPhones, which we could retract when we didn’t need them, but Zaine had to carry an average of 800 grams of camera all the way up, 627 meters to be exact. Although she is not new to photography, she never had any classes in the specific field of mountain photography, yet she took all the awesome pictures featured on this post!


8. God.


He is present all around us.

Now, I am not trying to advertise my religion or anything like that, but I felt God’s presence among me, especially during the times when I was alone. There were times during the hike where I had no one with me — no guide, no friends, no dogs. There was a group that was advanced and too forward while there was another group that was way too far behind. I


God’s beautiful creation.

was in the middle, yet I was with God. I found myself making the sign of the cross, whenever I would come upon a steep slope or a very narrow path that could cost you your life if you made one wrong move. It wasn’t that this certain mountain was hard, but anything could happen. I wouldn’t have made it without Him.


One of the dogs in the community, Darna.

The tradition of a before and after prayer.


9. The guides.


Kuya Rolan and Ate Mel.

Happy Ate Mel.

Serious Kuya Rolan.

We were so lucky to have this set of guides. They are senior guides who have been going up and down the mountain ever since they were children. Kuya Rolan was at the start of the pack, leading us towards the summit. Ate Mel on the other hand was the sweeper, making sure nobody got injured or left behind. They made a dynamic duo, and they also made us a more efficient team. I felt safe with their presence, especially whenever they would lend a hand (literally) so we could make it up safely. I would just stare in awe when I would see them running down the mountain like it was a flat surface.



Unlike Mount Sembrano, I didn’t think twice about wanting to return here. The only bad experiences I had during this trip were coincidentally all related to the van. Going to the place, I couldn’t sleep soundly and my head kept bobbing backwards. On the way home, I ate a pack of Stickos and ended up vomiting because fast moving cars and undigested food don’t go well together. That event aside, this was the best hike I have ever been on. I wonder where I will go next. I really do.



Have you guessed the mountain yet?

Photo credits: Zaine Barron, Jecel Manabat

Be Involved

Feature Us
Become a Local Guide
Become a Contributor


Pin It on Pinterest