Where to Eat in Taal, Batangas

I’ve only been to one restaurant in Taal. Cafe G is located near the Taal Basilica along the national Highway. If you are not from Taal, you can ask the locals 🙂

It has good ambiance and wide variety of menu. They also serve coffee and cakes. Medyo matagal nga lang magserve.

 

Cafe G, Taal

Cafe G, Taal

You can also try Batangas Lomi. There are Lomi Houses within walking distance in front of the church.  Just also ask the locals where you can find Lomi. These are legit Batangas Lomi, the best Lomi in the world :p

In the next town, Lemery, you can also try  Bahay Kainan. It serves Filipino food and price is very affordable. Ambiance is also good.

Bahay Kainan, Lemery

Bahay Kainan, Lemery

Bahay Kainan, Lemery

Bahay Kainan, Lemery

Other places near Taal:

This side of Batangas is Agoncillo and is just adjacent to Taal Lake. It’s the far end of the lake where you see the fish cages.

Taal Lake, Subic Ilaya, Agoncillo, Batangas

Taal Lake, Subic Ilaya, Agoncillo, Batangas

This is on the way to Tagaytay via the Talisay Road. It has beautiful view of Taal from down the road beside the Lake going up to Tagaytay.

 

Agoncillo - Laurel Road

Agoncillo – Laurel Road

 

This one is Taalena Reataurant and is in Tagaytay. It is overlooking to the Taal Volcano.

Taalena

Garden Wedding @ Taalena, Tagaytay

 

Taal Volcano

View from Taalena Restaurat in Tagaytay

How to Avoid Stress when Flying to/from Manila

  If you are flying to Manila for the first time, just so you know, there’s no train linking the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) terminals to the city. Do  consider the following:

  • Avoid arriving on a Friday in general. The traffic in Manila specially in the airport area is congested mainly because of the new roads under construction. There’s the Skyway that also aims to link all 3 major terminals. 
  • Avoid rush hour on any day. Rush hour in Manila is 7 to 10 am and 4pm to 7pm
  • Choose arrival time in the wee hours of the morning (11pm to 4am) to avoid traffic.
  • You can try Grab or Uber but surge is usually high. 
  • You can ride the airport taxi with airport meter rates
  • When in Terminal 2, You can go to the taxi lane in the Departure Area. You have to go up.
  • When in Terminal 2, there’s airport bus but I don’t know the fare. It will take you to Pasay Rotonda where you can ride the MRT/LRT. Pasay Rotanda is the south end of the MRT and of EDSA. However, if you have luggages, it is really adviseable that you dont do cutting trip anymorr and just ride a cab towards your destination.
  • When you are in Terminal 4(Local destinations), you can catch taxis outside (just a short walking distance)

Going to the Airport:

  • Again, avoid Fridays and rush hours in general. 
  • It’s better to book ahead of time because taxi/cab drivers will usually ask for a fixed amount. You’re lucky if you’ll have to pay only for the metered amount.
  • I only live 5 kilometer away from the airport and worst experience ive had is 2 hours travel to the airport. I thought I’ll never catch my plane.

In fact, while I’m writing this, I am actually in a 2 hour travel to the airport from Metro Manila on a Friday rush hour because I’m picking up my brother whose flight arrives at 6pm!

 

Durban, Makati

Twas my first time in Polaris/Durban Street in Makati. The BBQ Chicken is a must try in Top Dish, a whole in the wall Korean Restaurant. We also enjoyed most of the side dishes served.

Top Dish Korean Makati

Then just a few steps away is Alchemy Bistro bar. I was never enticed to an exterior of a bar in my lifetime. Haha.

Then just in front of it is a branch of Commune coffee shop. Great place to unwind solo or for your barkada to chill out.

Commune Coffee Shop Makati

Commune Coffee Shop Makati

Malaysia: 12 hour Layover

On our flight back from Singapore to Manila, we had a 12 hour layover in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

What can be done in 12 hours?

Right after arrival, we explored KL airport and bought a sim card. Then we rode the KLIA express. The train ride is 30 minutes from airport to KL Central Station.

We met a friend who toured us around and ate early lunch at the mall adjacent to the station. KL central is the station that connects to different parts of Malaysia (inlcuding the airport). We tried Nando’s which is an original in MY. Chicken is superb! I heard there’s a Manila branch already.

  
We went straight to the Petronas Tower which is 1 train away from KL central. We arrived before lunch and it’s a good thing that there are not much tourist that day that we got booked on their 1PM group tour  with no hassle.

  
  The other tower is also just nearby but we opted not to go there anymore.

It was a walking tour (again) and passed by the CBD, China Town and then last stop at the KL Museum.

Things I noticed:

  • The ambience is a little bit similiar to Manila.
  • Their train system is of higher grade than of Manila’s (lesser ticket queues, more train lines, airport line to the city, etc)
  • My friend told me it’s almost raining everyday in the afternoon

The must try’s:

  • Of course, the Petronas Tower – I’ve seen in the pictures it’s prettier at night. 
  • Try local food
  • Little India 
  • Batu Caves – I’ve heard it’s also a must see but it’s an hour away to the city I was hesitant about it.

  
  22,000 steps for the day! The rain caught us and we stayed in the museum for a while.  

Cebu 2015

Ang dami talagang pwede gawin sa Cebu. Isa na doon ay ang maghanap ng adventure. I’ve been to Cebu for 4 times na pero ang dami ko pa hindi nagagawa like visiting Cebu beaches (Camotes and Malapascua), Oslob and do swimming with the sharks. Meron din daw skydiving sa Cebu!

This year, ito yung mga natry namin:

1. Canyoneering! Oh goodness, I just did this yesterday! I still have muscle pains as of this writing. Konting pasa at gasgas lang naman. It’s definitely a thing to include in everyone’s bucketlist 😂. Lam mo yung yung feeling ng Free Fall sa isa sa ride ng EK? Medyo ganon yung feeling. Pero ito extreme kasi walang tali tali. Tatalon ka talaga on your own. Life vest lang at lakas ng loob! Mas ok kung may action cam na dala. Sobrang ganda along the way. There’s just so many natural wonders na ang ganda sana picture-an. Yung sana camera yung mga mata mo. Water is so clear nakakapagtaka. Woooooh amazing experience!

IMG_2323-0Tips though:

  1. Leave the city as early as you can. Roughly 3 hours yung travel time from City to the dop off point. Well, naka commute lang kami and maraming stops. If may service, siguro mas maiksi byahe. The whole activity will take at least 4 hours. Kyng madami kayo sa group (katulad namin na 17 kami), inabot kami halos ng 6-7 hours? Nagstart kami ng 1pm and duamting kami sa Kawasan Falls almost 5:30 pm. Madilim na and hindi na kami nakaligo sa Kawasan! I will come back there soon!
  2. Last bus trip from Alegria to the city is 8pm. Make sure you manage your time at nakaabang talaga kayo sa bu, otherwise, baka magovernight kayo ng wala sa oras.
  3. It’s suggested for girls to wear leggings para iwas gasgas.

2. Food Trip in IT Park! THE MUST TRY’s in IT PARK:

  1. Casa Verde, IT Park. Of course, Casa Verde is a must try pero tipid mode kasi kami on this trip! Make sure to try Brian’s Ribs!
  2. Siomai sa Tisa – I forgot to ask the people about the history of Siomai sa Tisa but what I noticed is that kahit sa Bus Station, meron ding “siomai sa Tisa”. 7Php per piece tapos sasabayan ng puso. Di lang pang merienda, kahit lunch or dinner na! Meron nabibilihan sa gilid ng IT Park 🙂 
  3. Paluto ng pancit canton/noodles/delata sa IT Park pa rin – Kung gusto mo naman yung mainit na sabaw ng noodles or pagkain ng fresh from the pot. Fresh kasi sina ate yung mag iinit ng gusto mong delata na ipaluto. 🙂 Best for midnight snacks ng mga Night Shifters. 
  4. And many more! Ang daming murang kainan. Yung tipong airconditioned tapos may live band pa taops yung meal mo, Php 60-80 lang? San ka pa!

3. Food Trip outside IT Park

  1. Larsian. It’s Cebu version of paluto Seaside pero majority ay barbeque(isaw, atay, chicken, chorizo, liempo then isda). Pati yung ambience parang Seaside kasi papasok ka pa lang e nag aagawan na yung mga mag aaok sayo na doon sa store nila kumain. Pork bbq as low as 5pesos. 👍👍👍. Super affordable! Nakailang ulit kami sa Larsian! Meron din daw iba pang kainan na ganito like Yakski kaso hindi 24 hours 🙂   
  2. Joed’s Lutong Hapon – somewhere near Sarrosa Hotel. Special Joed’s Maki is a must try!   
  3. Cebu Lechon – try Zubuchon or Maxwell’s Lechon Belly.

4. City Tour. Bakit nga ba laging may City Tour?  Well isn’t it interesting to know understand and feel even just a little bit of our history just by walking in the streets that our great anscestors also passed by. Cebu is very famous because it’s where the very first (Catholic) Christians were baptizes and where Magellan’s cross was erected. (Oh gosh I hope my history facts are right).

5. Pasalubong – You can buy pasalubong anywhere but our recommendation is still in Taboan. The price is lower than Pasalubong shops (like Island Pasalubong, Island Souvenir) and SM.

BEST BUYS:

  • Chicharon made from CarCar – ito daw pinakamasarap as per our Cebu friends. We got CarCar price at 600 per kilo. Personally, ang sarap nga 🙂
  • Dried Fish – Danggit/Dried Pusit  at around 700 – 800 per kilo. Bumili ako sa Airport ng 1/8 kilo ng Danggit for 200 Pesos (that’s Php1600 per kilo)
  • Lechon Take Out – pwede magpadeliver and it will be packed good for travel. I forgot where we bought last year.
  • Dried Mangoes as low as 280 per kilo! Yung nabili namin, 360 per kilo. Price in Manila is around 1000 per kilo na.

Make sure you canvass first from the different stores. HIndi ba usually, kapag sa palengke tapos magkakatabi ang stores is pare pareho yung price? We found out hindi.. Meron kaming store na laging binibilhan sa Taboan. When we checked the next store, products are 20pesos to 50pesos lower than the other one. E nakapagabayad na kami??? :))

6. Side Trip – Temple of Leah

Near Langtaw and same way going to Tops. Masarap tumambay if you want to destress and magmunimuni.  
Accomodations: We stayed in MetroPark Hotel for 7 nights. Price for 2 is 950/night. It’s the most affordable hotel near IT Park. Service and place is not bad!

Taxi: We enjoyed GrabTaxi’s zero booking fee and 20 pesos off from the meter.

Internet speed: LTE’s peak, maxed at 17mbps. Nakakahiya naman sa PLDT speedd sa Manila


Daghang salamat, Cebu!

Erra’s Ramen – Eat.Cafe

   
   
Aside from Wai Ying, Erra’s Ramen is one of our favorite food trip destination here in Manila. Erra’s is situated along Adriatico Street (near Coffee Bean Adriatico). It’s like an oversized sidewalk kainan. It serves Ramen and different pulutan (in a very affordable prize!). You’ll always spot foreigners eating who are probably staying in the opposite Backpackers hostel. 

I’m not sure if it’s open 24 hrs but I think it’s open until dawn! 

After a heavy meal, you can drop by the Eat.Cafe which is just near Erra’s. They serve chocnut pie (yes, made from chocnut) or try their other cakes.

  
 

#ThowBikeManila Ep 04


What if our city could feel more like an exciting weekend?
Sabi ni Julia Nebrija Nebrija sa #99ULocalMNL, we are proud to be Filipinos but how often do we say “I love Manila”? Para naman maiba, let’s re(re)Discover beauty and poetry on a bamboo bike within our nation’s capital.
Here are some highlights from our TBMNL Ep.04 tour:

✓ Bamboo Bike Adventure within and on the adobe walls of the original MNL

✓ Key Bike Stops and Stories: The original Km Zero @ Manila Cathedral, Government Efforts for Restoration @ Maestranza Arsenal Tunnel, Poverty and Devotion Sampaguita Ice cream @ Illustrado & Why we build walls @ Puerta Real Gardens

✓ “Bahay na bato and kalesa” stories from Silahis Artifacts,

✓ Nityalila’s letter reminder to keep pedalling and that a bike is a tool for change.

✓ Grab a Jeep to Binondo Chinatown,

✓ Fried Dumplings, Congee, Soy Chicken, Hawak & more Dimsum @ Wai Ying,

✓ Fresh Fruits and Fried Siopao at Ongpin,

✓ Arkitektura Manila stories by Paolo B. over Avocado Ice cream @ Big Scoop

✓ Escolta Saturday Market Awesome finds: Magnet board, custom bookmarks and more stuff hoarded by Tel

✓ Earlier Manila & FUB Museum Vintage Collections

✓ The state of our Architecture and Heritage Conservation issues @ Capitol Theatre

✓ 98B Artist stories and events in helping revive Escolta’s former glory through arts

✓ Adaptive Reuse & The Future of our heritage @ Juan Luna Viewing Deck

✓ Search for beauty and poetry within the city all throughout.
“In behalf of the Philippine Climate Pilgrims, maraming maraming salamat sa inyong suporta at pakikiisa. Thank you for your solidarity.
Keep pedalling. Connect with people. Share your stories. Listen to stories. Discover the truth, the beauty and the ugly. The bike is a tool, a tool for progress, for healing, for change. You only have to take that first pedal, that one move, to create that ripple of change you want. And that starts with you. Mabuhay kayong lahat! Cheers!”

– Nityalila.com, Ep 04 Featured story. Proceeds from the Ep. 04 tour will help Nitya in raising funds for her participation to the People’s Pilgrimage for the Planet from Rome to Paris.
Sa October na ulit yung next! Heritage, Adventure & FOOD. To receive updates on the next schedule and experience a different weekend in your city, sign up at http://www.throwbikemanila.com
View full photo gallery in Facebook:  http://bit.ly/tbmnlep04sharedstories
throwbikemanila Intramuros

Photos credits to Rae Kenept Alegado  

Baguio 2015: Weekend Getaway

Stop 1: Camp John Hay

Camp John Hay Baguio

Camp John Hay Baguio

Camp John Hay Baguio

Camp John Hay Baguio

Stpp 2: Camp John Cafe – pwede magdrawing at idisplay.

Camp John Hay Baguio Restaurants

Camp John Hay Baguio Restaurants

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Stop 3: The Mansion

The Mansion Baguio

Stop 4: Botanical Garden

Baguio Botanical Garden

Baguio Botanical Garden

Baguio Botanical Garden

Stop 5: SM Baguio

Stop 6: Burnham Park at night

Burnham Park Baguio at Night

Stop 7: Cafe Veniz while waiting for the Night Market

image

Stop 8: Night Market at Harrison Road

Baguio 2015: The Road to Forevermore

I wasn’t a Forevermore Fan, but I am definitely Enrique’s.

Sitio La Presa

It’s an hour drive from the city to “Sitio La Presa”. It is very much advisable that you come very early in the morning! At lunch time, the road to the top is filled with parked cars already. The place is so cool it’s so soothing to the eyes 🙂 Refreshing!

Warning: medyo matarik yung lalakarin sinula sa parking.

Sitio La Presa Baguio Benguet

Sitio La Presa Baguio Benguet

Sitio La Presa Baguio Benguet

Sitio La Presa Baguio Benguet

Sitio La Presa Baguio Benguet

Nakakatuwa lang kasi naging tourist spot na talaga yung bahay, pati yung mga alagang hayop sa loob. Museum ang peg.

Ang dami na din nagbebenta: paboritong taho ni Agnes, sumbrero ni Agnes, papicture sa kabayo ni Agnes. Lahat gamit ni Agnes. Hahahaha. Pati papicture, may bayad na.

You can only go there if you have a car or you hire a taxi. Standard rate is Php1000 daw pero we got it for P750 only. What’s even cooler than the Baguio weather was our Kuya Taxi Driver. He was our instant tour guide slash photographer slash entertainer.

If you want to ride his taxi ans tour you to La Presa: 0918 / 261 / 3253

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7 stops: Binondo Walkathon and Food Trip

One Saturday night, I was craving for Chinese food so I texted Angelique and so, we planned to go to Binondo the next day. Yey!

Our first stop. Walk in Ongpin Street. And when we’re almost at the end, we stopped by at 7-11 to buy drinks and check out where we could eat (we are not prepared! Haha)

When we already knew where to go and eat, we walked again. While walking, we stopped by at a small store where they sell fried siopao and some other Chinese foods. We got curious on how fried siopao would taste. That’s our second stop. We waited in line for I think 10 minutes as they are still cooking/frying it. It only costs 17 pesos each. When we got it, it’s still hot so we were not able to eat it immediately. We walked first going to Lucky Chinatown Mall. Yes, we love walking! In the middle of our walk, that’s when Lique tried the fried siopao and so did I. We were not able to take picture and we also don’t know what’s inside but I’ve already tasted something like that before. I’m not a good blogger, I should’ve asked the Kuya while we are in line. Hahaha. Next time, I’ll ask what’s inside and I’ll blog it again!

Our 3rd until 5th stops are just malls: Lucky Chinatown Mall, 11/88 Mall and 168 as Lique is looking for something. Shopping? grin

6th stop: Lan Zhou La Mien. My friend, Ate Myra, suggested this as their noodles are good. Indeed, it was good and the serving is large for it’s price. Beef Lamien and Spareribs Lamien are ₱120.00 each. I could say that it’s worth it.  I also saw one of their guys making noodles. We were not able to finish it and so we still have a take out. They are also giving free hot tea!Lan Zhou La Mien
 

La Mien receipt
These costs us ₱ 240.00. 
*I think the boy server has crush on Lique. Check out the receipt.wink
Then, we walked going to Wai Ying… to eat again! We walked since it’s just near and to burn some noodles that we ate. Haha! While walking, I asked Lique if she can still eat and she said, there’s still a little space. Check out what we ordered below and you’ll know what she meant by “little” space. Hahaha!
Our 7th and last stop: Wai Ying Fastfood.

Our orders: siomai, hakaw, chicken feet, buchi and 2 cold HK Milk Tea.

wai ying
Liq in Wai Ying 

Yes, that’s what Lique meant by “little” space. Their cold HK Milk Tea is so good, we even ordered another 2, one for me and one for Lique, for take out and it only costs 55 pesos each. I like it better than some of those in the Milk Tea houses.

HK Milk Tea Cold
And that’s it! My first ever Binondo walkathon and food trip. Cravings for Chinese food = check.