So far the best country I’ve ever visited, the best people I came across and the best mode of transportation within the country… and yes, I’m telling you about ……the Philippines! Again and again our trip was very spontaneous, we bought the tickets one month before, but we decided to plan our trip just one or a few days before the flight. What actually happened? We landed in Manila and we didn’t know where to go, so we planned the first few days of our trip at Manila airport. And that was the best decision we could have taken 🙂
Who was my travel companion and as well my friend? Meet Melissa (also my flatmate in China…:D)
Thus, we chose Mindoro island to stay for a few days. Why Mindoro? It is basically the cheapest and closest island to Manila. We took the bus from Manila to Batangas which took us about 1,5 hour (btw the bus was very nice, with wifi inside). The bus cost around 180 peso. Then, we took the boat to Puerto Galera- most populat city on Mindoro island. The boat took us 2 hours and we paid around 300 peso. So as you can see, the transporation is quite cheap in Philippines.
Melissa found a nice resort on Mindoro island that was near enough to near enough to Puerto Galera for us to go party at night, but also remote enough so that we could chill during the day 🙂
Why we liked this country so much? I think it’s mostly because of its people. They smile, smile and again they smile all the time. Even though there is a lot of poverty in Philippines, people enjoy their lives, create an unforgettable atmosphere that makes you want to come back to this country asap. When I was taking photos of Philipino people they were more than pleased, saying ‘thank you’ for every photo that I took of them and even asking me to take them a photo. Even when we were on the beach and some sellers approached us to buy something from them, when we said that we don’t want anything they just walked away with a smile and saying sorry that they disrupted us! unbelieveable how nice Filipino people are! We even got to know the local police who stopped each time they saw us walking on the street to ask us how we were and telling us to take care.
So we stayed four nights on Mindoro island at Amami resort which is owned by extra- friendly Fabio. There, we met a lot of expats who still live or lived in Philippines. One of those expats was Peter from Scotland who helped us enormously. After few days on the island we wanted to move somewhere else, to visit something different. We decided to see the Taal Volcano and Peter had some friends there who have an organic farm. Thus, we wrote to his friends to tell them that we were looking for a cheap place to stay. This is how we ended up staying on an organic farm, in the middle of the jungle, with a buffalo, a bunch of pigs and different other animals…. WAS AMAZING! And what’s more, the Filipino family who hosted us took so much care of us, for two days we were eating delicious Filipino food with them, swimming in the river in the jungle, riding the buffalo, picking the vegetables from the farm … 🙂
What I loved in this country is as well its old-school mode of transportation. I loved the jeepneys and tricycles. Have a look at the photos how cool they are 🙂