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Bohol: The Island of Tarsiers and Chocolate Hills

The island of Bohol was our last stop in the Philippines before continuing our journey East to Hong Kong. The adorable island of Bohol is a quick ferry journey from Cebu (an international travel hub in the Philippines) making it an ideal place to stay. Type “Bohol” into a Google Image search and two things will come up: cute bug-eyed tarsiers (amongst the world’s smallest primates) and the majestic Chocolate Hills (some 1,200 limestone mounds that turn cocoa-brown in the dry season); hence the “adorable” adjective when describing Bohol. Continue reading

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For the first time in over a year of travelling, we missed a reservation we had made. Our early morning flight from Boracay to Cebu was delayed almost three hours. When we finally landed we quickly hopped in an Uber and rushed to the bus station but got stuck in typical Filipino traffic. We hopped on a bus/ferry combo to Dumaguete and hoped we’d make what we had read online was the last ferry to Siquijor (7:20 PM). We arrived at 7:00 PM and raced down the street towards the port. Turns out he last ferry actually left at 6:00 PM. Continue reading

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Beautiful Boracay

Given that in 2012, Boracay was awarded ‘best island in the world’ from the international travel magazine Travel + Leisure (it came in 2nd in 2013, with Palawan – our previous destination – in 1st); we thought we should probably pay it a visit. The centre of the action in Boracay is a 4km, postcard-perfect stretch of sand beach aptly named ‘White Beach’ and lined with hotels, restaurants, bars, and dive shops. White Beach has been hailed by Yahoo Travel, BMW Tropical Beach Handbook and many others as one of the world’s best beaches. It is immensely popular with beach-loving tourists from all over Asia – most commonly Korea, Taiwan and China. When we found a one-way flight on sale for 25$, combined with a cheap Airbnb, well, we didn’t really have a reason to say ‘no’ to checking out another slice of paradise. Continue reading

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Philippines’ Gem: Palawan (Coron and El Nido)

The province of Palawan is home to some of the most picturesque places I have ever been; I’m talking post-card perfect, no need for photo-editing; just raw beauty. It is rapidly becoming a huge tourist destination for both Filipinos and foreigners and is drawing more and more people every year. While most foreigners seem to congregate in El Nido, we decided to make another stop en-route by first taking an overnight ferry from Manila to Coron, spending a few nights there and then another ferry to El Nido. And I can’t stress how glad I am that we went to Coron – if I had to do it again, I would probably skip tourist-crowded El Nido and just visit Coron. Continue reading

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Manila Vanilla

We just liked saying Manila Vanilla, unfortunately there’s no vanilla in Manila. 

Almost every traveller we talked to recommended skipping Manila, or staying for as little time as possible. Given that Dan and I enjoy cities more than most, we thought we would give Manila a chance and stay for two nights. As it turns out, the city is filthy, crowded and the traffic is absolutely horrendous. And there’s really not much to see other than doing a day trip to a volcano which we hadn’t planned on. So, in retrospect, I would probably have to agree with everyone and not recommend Manila as a must-see city, or even one to bother with at all (especially if you are short for time, which we weren’t). Continue reading

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From Thailand, our goal was to get to Singapore – in the most scenic way possible. I mean, why take a direct train through Malaysia when you can island hop from Thailand?? So of course that’s what we did. The ferries between islands cost a significant bit more than the buses on the mainland but we decided it was worth it to see the Malaysian islands of Langkawi and Penang before finally landing on peninsular Malaysia and busing to Kuala Lumpur.

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The Ugly Side of Travel

I have an absolute love affair with travelling the world. The amazing things I’ve been privileged to see and experience as I travel around the world are the source of some of my best memories. I used to preach that travelling is good for the soul, that it makes you a better person; how travelling pushes your boundaries, broadens your view on the world, betters your understanding of the complexity of mankind, opens your eyes, and changes you forever. But recently, my eyes have been wide open and I’m not loving what I see. Continue reading