Tag Archives: Philippines

Baguio City

We are blessed to originate from a province less than 2hours travel to one of the top tourist destination in Luzon…Baguio City. Had another chance to visit Baguio last year and we are joined by our grandfather on this trip. Since Baguio is less than 2 hours from Pangasinan we just had our day tour.

Lion’s Head-you would not miss this gigantic statue if you are coming from Kennon road on your way up to Baguio.


The Mansion – located in Leonard Wood Road, it was built in 1908 to house the US governor and generals. There are days where you can get inside but is close to public most of the time.


Wright Park – located across The Mansion and known for its manmade pond called “Pool of Pines”. Children and those children at heart will enjoy the main activity here which is horseback riding.


 Mines View Park – located 4kms from the city proper where you can see the panoramic view of Benguet province.


Burnham Park – located at the city proper and the most well-known tourist spot in Baguio. There are a lot of activities here, boating, biking, and strolling. You can also pitch a tent if you just want to sit and relax.



Las Ventanas, Tagaytay

It’s our wedding anniversary once again and we are on our 9th year as husband and wife. Just like what we did last year where we just spent the whole day on the beach in Camaya Coast, we went out of town just to relax and unwind. Again, I purchased a promo from Metrodeal for Las Ventanas in Tagaytay. For P1,900 per night on a weekday (with additional P1,000 if you are going there on a weekend or holiday) you can stay at their twin room inclusive of plated dinner and breakfast, free use of swimming pool and a 60-minute whole body massage for 2.



Going there is easy even if you are commuting. On our way to Las Ventanas, we took the van from Starmall going to Balibago, travel time is around 45 minutes. From Balibago terminal, we rode the jeep going to Tagaytay Market, travel time is 30 minutes. On our way back to Manila, we took the bus going to Lawton, travel time is 2.5 hours.

Once you arrived at the public market, you will see Collete’s store across the street. There is a narrow path besides the store and you need to walk a steep road, about 300meters to reach Las Ventanas. You may opt to ride a tricyle.


dinning hall

Las Ventanas is a 2,600 sqm property tucked in a highland of Tagaytay. Amenities include swimming pool, massage area, garden and dining hall.


massage area

Rooms have no aircon which is quite ok since the breezy wind of the highlands will make you feel cool and comfortable. There are no tv and wifi as well because they want their visitors be detached to the busy world. The place is also surrounded with plants and trees to make you feel more relax while enjoying the nature.


inside one of the rooms

The place is simple and unassuming although some area needs to be maintained. For me, the original rate of P4,000 is pricey and P1,900 promo rate is acceptable considering the free meals and massage. But for the purpose of relaxation and bonding moments with your love one, being detached with the hustle and bustle of the metro and communing with nature is definitely achievable here.


swimming pool

So how much did we spend for this trip:


Las Ventanas Metrodeal promo                                       P1,900

Van from starmall edsa-balibago terminal                     P140

Jeep from balibago-tagaytay market                               P80

Tricycle from market-las ventanas                                   P30

Snacks (drinks,chips,bread,fruits)                                     P160

Tip for Massage                                                                    P100


Tricycle from market-olivares terminal                           P20

Jeep from Olivares terminal-diner’s                                 P20

Lunch at Diner’s Bulalo overlooking taal volcano          P490

Bus from Diner’s to Lawton                                               P190

                                                                                                P3,130/2 pax

Rizal Windmill, Pililia Rizal

This windmill is the one nearest from the metro and overlooking Laguna de Bay.


27 wind turbines in 4,515 hectares of land under Alternative Wind One Corporation.


San Ildefonso of Toledo Parish Church, Tanay Rizal

One of the old churches in the province of Rizal.


Built between 1773 to 1783 and was declared a National Treasure in 2001.


Tracing roots…Badoc, Ilocos Norte

This is my fourth time in Ilocos province. Together with my family and relatives from Bicol, our main objective for this trip is to get acquainted with our relatives from my grandfather’s hometown in Badoc.

Municipality of Badoc is as 3rd class municipality in the province of Ilocos, Norte. Even if this place is not part of the usual Ilocos itinerary for tourist, Badoc has its own fair share of tourist spots.

Parish of St. John the Baptist

Also known as Badoc Church, estimated to be more than 200-year-old baroque style church made up of bricks and stone.


 It also has its bell tower and buttresses on the side of the church, a typical church design in Ilocos province.


 The church also houses the image of La Virgen Milagrosa de Badoc. Story tells that in year 1620, the image of the Blessed Mother and a statue of the Black Nazarene were seen floating on the shores of Sinait, Ilocos Norte. Fishermen from Sinait were able to move the Black Nazarene but not the image of Mother Mary while the fishermen from Badoc were able to moved La Virgen Milagrosa but not the Black Nazarene. The locals took the two statues to their respective towns, hence becoming their patron saints.

Slide3This year, the image is scheduled to be canonically crowned on May 31, being the 37th Canonically Crowned Marian Image in the Philippines.

Juan Luna Shrine

The Lunas were natives of Badoc Ilocos Norte. Juan, the internationally-acclaimed painter is born in Badoc while Antonio, a revolutionary general is born in Manila. That is probably why the two-storey ancestral house was named after Juan Luna.


Upon entering, there is an audio-visual presentation of the Luna’s history. At the second floor are rooms with antique bits and pieces of the family.


The museum has six galleries which houses memorabilia from the Luna folks particularly the paintings of Juan and some of Antonio’s belongings.


 Gabut Beach Resort

Most of my relatives live near the seashore. I, being a beach enthusiast find this place a blessing for them. Who would not want to have a residence walking distance to a beach?


 Our relatives scheduled a get together lunch in Gabut Beach Resort, a resort about 1 kilometer from their abode. We are happy to see some familiar faces and finally got acquainted with the others.


Special thanks to our gracious hosts kuya Nelson Duran and family for the food and booze, kuya Andring Nicolas and his 3 sons for welcoming us to their beautiful home, to Llyod for accompanying us on our Badoc tour, to the Pajinag, Magbulos and all the Balbas clan I was not able to mention.


Ilocanos are known for being “kuripot”… probably not in my relative’s case =)