Among the provinces in the Bicol Region, Masbate province remained unexplored territory for me until recently. Its remoteness and raw beauty are part of its allure. I had previously visited the Burias Islands and Ticao, and this time, I set my sights on the larger Masbate Island, starting my journey from the southwestern tip of Balud, home to the Jintotolo Lighthouse, a lone sentinel watching over the Sibuyan Seas.
Calatagan’s beach has always been the primary reason for my visits to this charming part of Batangas. The picturesque white sands and breathtaking views have lured me back to Stilts Calatagan several times. During my recent trip with family and friends, I decided to bring my folding bike to explore the nearby areas, including the century-old Spanish lighthouse, Cape Santiago, or Faro de Cabo Santiago – one of the well-preserved remnants of Spanish architecture in the country.
For a time, the province of Capiz, located on the northeastern island of Panay in Western Visayas, had a reputation for being a land of Aswangs (shape-shifting evil mythical creatures). This notion can be traced back to several historical events. One such event was the outbreak of dystonia disease that afflicted several residents in the province. Another was the use of the myth of Aswang to scare off Japanese soldiers during the war. These days, however, the province has chosen to spotlight its abundant seafood, earning it the moniker “Seafood Capital of the Philippines.”
Let me take you on a journey through the captivating corners of Ilocos Norte, where every sight is a story and every bite is an adventure. I’ve been a wanderer in this region for as long as I can remember, and let me tell you, it never fails to amaze me. Join me as we explore the vibrant culture, rich history, and mouthwatering cuisine of May-Kan Ilocos Norte!
Leprosy has been eradicated in Culion since the 1980s but the stigma still remains. It didn’t help that World Health Organization (WHO) only declared Culion leprosy-free in 2006. So why not embrace this history of healing of this infectious disease? The structures, the research, the tools and the story of the people who lived while it was a leper colony still remains. Culion town is a witness on how a community persevered and healed.
I was looking for a place to take night photos in Penang when an image of a beautifully lit Kek Lok Si Temple popped up on my searches. The fantasy-land like lights of the temple would offer plenty of photo opportunities especially after sunset. Reading more, I learned that there’s a lot of superlatives going for this temple. Kek Lok Si is the largest Buddhist temple in Malaysia and one of the largest in Southeast Asia. It has the tallest Buddhist pagoda, tallest granite pillars and the tallest statue of Guanyin, the Goddess of Mercy. My interest deepened that I made sure to hop a bus at KOMTAR to Air Itam one afternoon in Penang.
After exploring adventure-filled destinations in the outskirts of the main capital, we’re excited to wander finally through Taipei, Taiwan’s metropolitan city. And what better place to start than Dadaocheng, where some of the country’s oldest streets are found. There are more than a 100 year old culture and businesses that still thrive until this day. We had a full afternoon to experience the dazzling array of sights, sounds and even taste as we walk through the lively and charming Dihua street.