I experienced Basilan and it was a splendor of sumptuous seafood and flavorful halal dishes, uncrowded natural wonders and a melting pot of culture from people brimming with hope and promise. I think more than a decade a apart since my first visit was enough to see how Basilan has changed. I’m not here to erase the stigma that has attached to the province (as in with any other places) but to highlight the other side which not many people have seen yet. If you’re willing and have an open mind, a couple of cities in Basilan, namely Isabela de Basilan and Lamitan, are ripe and ready for tourism.
A journey in the wild can be extremely exciting, but also scary if you’re a beginner. That’s why you need to gather all the info you possibly can so that you’re better prepared and to make the whole experience a lot better. Don’t worry, every experienced backpacker and hiker was once planning their very first trip. So to make things easier, in this article we’ll walk you through all the essential gear you must have and share some tips on how to pack and execute for your first journey
There may be a lot of things you can’t find in Old San Juan–world-class hotels and beaches. But what it lacks, it makes up for a whole lot more. This colorful city has so much to offer that any tourist would surely regret not taking the time to roam around and take as many photos as they can. If you’re up for some culturally and historically rich adventure, look no further because Old San Juan is more than what you need.
Although it’s ideal to explore the city generously time-wise, it’s possible to tour around its richness and vast culture in just a day. Just a gentle warning, though. You’ve got to pack a good amount of energy and a fully-charged camera and phone if you want your day to end up perfectly as you’d hope for it to be.
For a coffee-lover like me, riding to the coffee capital of the Philippines, Amadeo, Cavite was more than just a trivial endeavor. Just being at one of the country’s largest coffee producer and tasting it’s famous “pahimis” blend was enough to pedal my way to Amadeo. Besides, it’s just short of 30km from Biñan where I’m staying. For this ride, I took the Davilan road to Silang, Cavite to Amadeo then a sidetrip to Tagaytay on my way back.
If you’re in the Middle East and would want to go on a holiday someplace that mixes the spiritual with the physical, the cultural with the gustatory, maybe you’d want to consider heading off to mystical India. And if we’re talking about India, then why not make it Uttar Pradesh? The state is a heady mix of the holy and the storied, a special place where Lord Krishna, Lord Rama, and the Buddha were said to have walked the earth. It’s also a great jump-off point for the different sights and attractions that draw visitors, pilgrims and tourists alike, from all over the world. And with affordable, inexpensive prices for a Dubai to Lucknow flight ticket, the proposition to visit becomes even more enticing and attractive indeed.
I catch my breath as it escapes me. It’s getting shallow. I knew I’m almost at the edge of my capacity to pedal. So I stop. They call this stretch “2 kilometers of Pain”, now I know why. First time I passed through REVPAL was coming from Tagaytay side. I was screaming with exhilaration as I descend these slopes from Mt Sungai. Going the “reverse” way and negotiating up to 15% gradient (9 degrees) incline was a different experience altogether. But hey, we’re here for the thrill right? Like any other cyclist, we’re always trying to test our mettle. Am I? I’m really here for the sightseeing.
Staying in Biñan, Laguna offered a more pleasant provincial scenery than I was staying in Metro Manila. While not entirely rural, our side of Laguna borders Carmona, Cavite which still have plenty of open spaces and nature spots. It gave me opportunity to explore nearby areas by bike. One biking destination here enjoyed by locals is called Davilan. Still part of Carmona, the place has challenging uphills called Davilan Ahon, the wide open wilderness-like Davilan Park and a rough trail leading to a refreshing pool of water at Pasong Buhangin.