Tanay is becoming a hiking haven near Manila with several climbing destinations in close proximity with each other. One destination which has fascinated me for a time is the unique looking limestone platform of Nagpatong Rock at Barangay Cuyambay. When I got an invite for a day climb, I quickly jumped-in. Not only to satisfy my curiosity of the place but to support a cause. I joined United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and their ambassador Atom Araullo in climbing Nagpatong rock to spread awareness on their campaign “2 Billion Kilometers to Safety”.
Realizing the expansion of tourism and accessibility for everyone to freely fly, it’s not enough for Cebu Pacific Air (CEB) to just carry people from one destination to another. CEB aims to lessen the impact of tourist arrivals through its sustainable program called Juan Effect launched in August 2018. By partnering with government and local stakeholders Juan Effect contributes and raises environmental awareness to local communities and tourist in local destinations. Piloting the program is fast emerging tourist destination, Siargao.
It was an advocacy to entice more people to travel to Mindanao, the southernmost major island of the Philippines. A region much maligned due to isolated insurgencies which affected nearby regions. Born out of Iligan’s Waterfalling activity, Travel Mindanao is a project by a group of travel bloggers with a common zest for adventure and to showcase the best of Mindanao. The project was supposed to be in a span of a month but I had to catch up shortening my participation to 20 days. Still, after seven provinces, it was one of my memorable journeys in the country.
It was an unforeseen disaster when Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) ravaged the Philippines early November 2013. My Cebu Pacific Air cancelled flight to Surigao City is so petty a problem compared to what happened to the cities in the typhoon’s path. It was a storm the world was watching and the rest of the TravelMindanao team felt a portion of its wrath in Surigao City. Everything went to a sudden stop as we weathered the storm, Cebu Pacific Air easily rebooked my flight for Butuan on another date to catch up with the rest of the TravelMindanao team. Circumstances however led us to Cathe Pacific in Cantilan, Surigao del Sur prematurely for a much-needed downtime.
November was a kick-off of the TravelMindanao Project. It was a thrilling whirlwind 20-days (and would have been more if not for Super Typhoon Yolanda’s unexpected arrival) for me but was quite fulfilling in discovering (and re-discovering) different facets of Mindanao. So what started as a joke from the recent WAT 2.0 in Iligan evolved to an advocacy, a call to action to Travel to Mindanao. With a group of 8 travel bloggers we explored Mindanao to showcase the sights, the people, the experience and hoping you consider Mindanao on you next travel plan. Here’s a snippet on some of the highlights of this project.
This month of November, I along with 7 other travel bloggers will give some travel loving to the much maligned Philippine region of Mindanao. Yes, starting November 6, we’ll be exploring Mindanao to experience and share with you destinations where you can safely travel through yet enjoy stunning nature trips, extreme adventures, mouth-watering delicacies, rich culture and the unique warmth of Mindnanoans. Let us change your perception of Mindanao and hopefully this TravelMindanao project would entice you to book your next travel here.
Day 2 of our Puerto Princesa tour found us visiting the areas where a lot of the sponsored children and families live. We were also graced by the presence of Miss Universe runner-up Ms Miriam Quimbao, who is a fellow sponsor. She flew in that morning from Manila and would leave later that day as well just to attend the event and lend her support.