Two Irish girls just back!

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Dec 10th, 2005, 06:42 AM
  #1
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Two Irish girls just back!

Well,
What a trip..we had a blast.
We had flights to and from Manila booked and then just 'arranged' our trip when we were there.

We had 2 days in Manila and Bill we did not shop at all...can you believe it...I lived in the USA for 7 years...so I know it is a national pastime ...but we reisited...we also resisted having the hotel hail us a cab to and from places as they were 4 times the price as getting a meter taxi on the street. Had dinner in the Shangri La and it was delightful.

We found the flights with Singapore airlines fantastic...but despite this the jet lag and just plain tiredness we felt was immense. The first night we neglected to set an alarm to wake up in the morning and then slept for 14hours straight.

We explored Intramurus and there was a big stately wedding there in the Cathedral...we returned the next day to see inside the cathedral and were invited to be on the promotional video for the Cathedral.

We had cocktails in the Manila hotel and it was pleasatnt listening to the pianist.
on Sat night we explored the Roxas Blvd and stopped here and there for a drink, to watch the people and listen to the music. We ate at the Banana Leaf.

We flew to Caticlan airport to go to Boracay and it was about $30 US for the flight.

We stayed at Boat Station one at True Home Hotel...right on the beach...a boutique hotel with 9 rooms and in antique Filipino style. Great.
We took a motorbike taxi to Baling Hai cove and had our drinks and eats lowered down the cliff in a basket! super.
We hired a sailing boat with two guys to sail us around the island...amazing...the boat was beautiful and lots of people took photos of it...called Satisfaction.

Lots more to write...later.
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Dec 12th, 2005, 09:38 AM
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I am happy to hear you had such a great time in Manila and all without shopping! Maybe now all the BKK regulars (those that go to BKK every year) will consider visiting the Philippines. There really is a lot to see and so in Manila and surroundings as well as great beach excursions. The shopping is great also for those so inclined and the US dollar goes a long long way! We will be there in about 2 months!
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Dec 12th, 2005, 11:35 AM
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Where is the Banana Leaf restaurant? Is it on Roxas Blvd? We ate at the Banana Leaf in Makati and it was great- Singaporean/Malaysian quisine!
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Dec 13th, 2005, 06:42 AM
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Irish Chic- please post more of your trip report.
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Dec 13th, 2005, 10:30 AM
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We ate at the Banana Leaf in Makati also.

And although we had a great time I would not rate the Philippines as highly as Japan, Vietnam or China. That said we had a great time.

We then flew from Caticlan to Cebu and someone reccommended Malacapascua Island of the North coast...well what an Adventure with a capital A.

In the arrivals hall WOW Philippines the official tourist dept of the Philippine gov. helped!! us.

We took a taxi to the bus station...out luggage got put on the bus before we had decided anything,so we hopped on and followed it!

It was a 5 hour, non-airconditioned bus journey over hill and dale...in the sunshine and rain..that started in daylight and ended in Maya in the dark...with no more ferries that day to Malapascua...

to be continued...
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Dec 13th, 2005, 10:45 AM
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Agreed, the Philippines does not market tourism very well- but its still an interesting place to visit.
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Dec 17th, 2005, 01:11 AM
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So our only option was to pay for a 'special ferry' for just us...usually 40 pesos for the journey...but we paid 1000...still peanuts for a half hour boat journey.

So we arrived on Malapascua with no reservations and since someone had reccommended the Blue Water that is where we headed...we stayed their one night at a cost of 1000 pesos for bright, clean, room with AC.

We wandered down the beach for dinner at Sunsplash and the German owner showed us his rooms...which were much nicer so we agreed a price of 2300 pesos and moved the next morning.

We did not realise before we got to the island that there was no fresh water and only a generator from 6pm - 9pm that provided electricity. So no hot showers and only salt water in the taps...but sunsplash had it's own generator that meant AC during the night...www.sunsplash.info...most of site is in German.

We really enjoyed our stay on Malapascua...very small...very laid back...we got a taxi back to Cebu at a cost of 2500 pesos...only took 3 hours and was airconditioned.

More later...
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Mar 27th, 2006, 02:46 PM
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BillT, i've heard that we got nice spas in Manila and it's cheap too! if this is your first time going there, check the malls. they are huge! have fun!

I haven't been back there.. and I miss it sooo much.
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Mar 28th, 2006, 03:27 PM
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Thanks, I did find more tipping info after I learned better how to search this forum. I feel more comfortable now about tipping. Just didn't want to be rude.
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