On the road again - Philippines!


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June 17th 2012
Published: June 18th 2012
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Sunrise
20.-24. of April

(Slovenian version below.)

We are on the road again strolling around the Philippines. "Adult life" now allows us only 3 weeks but as they say, short is sweet.

On Friday we were at the office both very eagerly waiting for the end of the workday, backpacks were packed in one hour (now we are already very good at it) and after couple of hours we were already sitting on a plane for Manila. We were greeted by unbearable heat, humidity and smog. The Friendly's hostel is apparently the place to be in the old part of Manila called Malate. We were unexpectedly "upgraded" and we got an air-con room, which was a balm for the abnormally hot night. A San Miguel on the roof terrace for a good night sleep and we were ready for new challenges that Philippines have to offer.

The next day we, in the unsuccessful hunt for breakfast, explored the neighborhood Malate and chose to visit the "posh" neighborhoods Makati, where we cooled down in the megalomantic shopping centers and had a excellent Sunday lunch at the local food market. In the afternoon, we quickly checked off the historic sites
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Intramorus
from the time of Spanish conquest in the region of Intramuros and then "escaped" the city on the night bus to a lot more cool and pleasant north.

First stop was Banaue, a small, typical Philippine town, quite touristic, which is the gateway to see innumerable rice terraces. And there it was the true tropical rain that lasted and lasted. There was a pause in between just enough for us to literally run to the nearby village of Batad when it hit again. We settled ourselves in Simon's view ... which really has an amazing "view", had a great lunch while listening to the raindrops and finally took time to “feed” the jet lag. We spent the evening exchanging travel stories with a Swedish guy, German girl and two Israeli guys (boy I missed that!). The next morning we were woken up by the sun and it was photo-shooting time – Uros had been up since 6 in the morning trying to get the perfect light (amazing what the Philippines did to him – he is actually getting up before me, without any comments at 6 am!). Overjoyed that the rain had stopped, we headed out to approx. 6 hours trekking through rice terraces, pass the village of Cambulo to the "main road", where we were picked up by a jeepney back to Banaue. The same day we had both afford an 1-hour long massage (can you blame us, if was 350PHP/7 €!).

More on the rice terraces in the next blog!





Slovenian version:

Spet sva na poti in tokrat pohajkujeva po Filipinih. »Odraslo življenje« nama zdaj dopušča le 3 tedne ampak kot pravijo, kratko je sladko.

V petek sva v službi oba že zelo nestrpno čakala konec delavnika, rukzaka sta bila spakirana v eni uri (zdaj nama gre to že zelo dobro od rok) in čez par uric sva že sedela na letalu za Manilo. Pričakala naju je, jasno, neznosna vročina, vlaga in smog. V hostlu Friendly's so naju nepričakovano »upgrade-al« in dobila sva air-con sobo, ki je bila pravi balzam za nenormalno vročo noč. Še San Miguel na hotelski terasi za lahko noč in pripravljena sva bila na nove filipinske izzive.

Naslednji dan sva, v nesupešnem lovu za zajtrkom, naredila kratek sprehod po soseski Malate in se raje odločila za obisk »posh« soseke Makate, kjer sva se hladila v megalomanskih shopping centrih in si privoščila odlično kosilo na nedeljskem food marketu. Popoldne sva na hitro odkljukala zgodovinske znamenitosti iz časa španskega osvajanja v predelu Intramuros nato pa »zbežala« na nočni bus proti veliko bolj hladnem in prijetnem severu.

Prva postojanka je bil Banaue, majhno, tipično filipinsko mestece, precej turistično, ki je vstopna točka za ogled neštetih riževih teras. Pričkal naju je pravi tropski dež, ki je trajal in trajal, nato sva dobila zeleno luč ravno za toliko časa, da sva prakrično pritekla do vasice Batad (verjetno zato, ker sva se odločila da greva v dežju ali soncu in kupila pončote), ko se je zopet mega uscaloJ. Namestila sva se v Simon's view... ki ima res neverjeten »view«, pojedla super kosilo in ob dežju »nahranila« še jet lag. Večer pa smo si s švedom, nemko in dvema izraelcoma kar pozno v noč izmenjavali potovalne zgodbice... to sva res pogrešala! Naslednje jutro je imel Uroš že ob 6h pravi foto-shooting (neverjetno kaj delajo Filipini - Uroš dejansko vstaja pred mano in to brez pripomb ob 6h zjutraj). Zbudilo naju je sonce in vsa presrečna sva se odpravila na cca. 6 urni trekking po riževih terasah, mimo vasi Cambulo in čez prelaz do »glavne ceste«, kjer naju je pobral jeepney za nazaj v Banaue. Isti dan sva si oba privoščila še 1-urno masažo (kaj moreš, če je pa 350PHP/7€!).

Še več o riževih terasah v naslednjem blogu!


Additional photos below
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Famous jeepney
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Malate
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Food market
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Food market - Makate
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Intramorus
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rain, rain, rain
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Uros doing the "rain dance"... desperately hopping for the rain to stop:)


19th June 2012

I need help
I am planning my trip to Philippines. Tell me, please, how did you get to Banaue? Is the trekking hard? I mean, is it steep? I need to know that because I can´t walk on steep surfaces. I would like to see the rice terraces but from an easy place... You can write to my email. Thank you. gracetandil@yahoo.com.ar Graciela, from Argentina.
20th December 2012

Batad
Hi! Thanks for reading our blog. You can take a jeepney from Banaue all the way up to the viewpoint from where it's only downhill - aprox 20-30min walking. The fastest & easiest way back from Batad is going the same way - uphill 20-30 min and with a jeepney. I wouldn't say it is hard. We went all around though, 1 whole day trekking to the near villages. Batad is def something to see so go for it!
20th December 2012

like the locals....
I love it that you went to beautiful Batad and Banaue and ate like the locals. Great blog. and love those photos!

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