The world’s oldest active sea-faring passenger ship MV Doulos is back in Manila on its way to its last voyage. This will probably be the last time it will dock on Manila shores since the ship will retire on 2010. MV Doulus (doulus is a greek for Servant) is also known as the floating bookstore that has gone around the world spreading charity on every country it visits. For now it will be in Manila shores from March 6-30 2009.
I was accompanied by the Roadworthyman and lagalog on my first (and probably last) visit here. MV Doulos opens at afternoon during Sundays, the line wasn’t that long when we arrived but soon as the afternoon passes, people came in droves that the line twisted in and got longer. It sure is hot so a cap or an umbrella would be recommended while waiting in line. A bottle of water would also be nice to keep refreshed.
There’s a 10 pesos entrance fee for the bookstore and I noticed they have this 100 pesos entrance fee for a special tour around Doulos ship as well. There also a limit on how long you could stay on the ship so you could give chance for another batch of buyers/visitors.
The shoulder to shoulder, elbow brushing against elbow crowd is an understatement. One reason a lot of people go here is the cheap price foer their books. This is good if you are looking for children’s books, cook books, general reference and a lot of Chritian-related literature books. I was actually looking for some fictions but I found myself buying a mug and a CD.
Aside from the books, they have short programs as well and activity for the kids like face paintings and some book readings. You can talk to a lot of volunteers here from more than 40 countries around the globe. This ship is powered by the good will of its many volunteers who doesn’t even earn from the ship. Some of them even have to pay around $400 dollars to be part of the crew and serve on its mission. And for a ship built in 1914, it sure looks a lot better and in-shape than some of our sea vessels here in out country.
Port information for the MV Doulos visit to Manila, Philippines
Arrival Date: March 5, 2009
Departure Date: March 31, 2009
Opening Date: March 6, 2009
Closing Date: March 30, 2009
Openig Hours: Tuesday – Saturday 10am-10pm, Sunday – Monday 2pm-10pm
Entry Fee: Php 10, 16 and under is free but must be accompanied by adult.
Location: Pier 13, Manila South Harbor, Entry at Gate 1.
Ferdz Decena is an award-winning travel photographer, writer and blogger. His works has found print in publications such as Singapore Airlines’s Silver Kris, Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay, Cebu Pacific’s Smile and Seair InFlight. He has also lent his expertise to various organizations like the Oceana Philippines, Lopez Group Foundation, Save the Children and World Vision, contributing quality images for their marketing materials.