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Need advises for trip to the Phillippines...


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zoossh

Senior Member
Nov 29, 2005
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Singapore
#1
wondering if i get better responses here or from kopitiam.

have preliminary thoughts (still reading lonely planet) on the above.

late aug 24 - sep 3, 9-11 days
manila (short transit) - baguio - banaeu & sagada (3hrs apart) - vigan.
thinks it is quite packed for 10 days but possible.
less keen on the south due to safety concerns. also does not like beach too much.

would like to ask if any filipino forumer here or those who have been there, on the following....

1. is the above period feasible for travel there?
2. is there particular concerns to violent crime on tourists?
3. any comments on the above locations?

and if anyone is interested in going, does sound out too. i dun like to travel alone and may get partners.
 

Brand

Senior Member
Nov 6, 2006
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www.lushfolio.com
#2
Hi Zoossh,

I'm definitely interested in joining up.. though whether i can get my leave approved is another matter..

Any idea what kinda places baguio, banaeu, sagada, vigan are? nvm, I go read up on them..

might be nice also if the trip coincides with one of their festivals as filipinos' holidays can be really colorful..

I'll sound out my filipino ex-colleague..
 

glensky

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Aug 11, 2004
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#3
yeap its possible to for 10 days,if safety is your concern-its safe there even in southern part goin to manila.just act one of them and talk nicely,meaning softer tone.ull be surprise most of the pple there speak fluent english.baguio-sagada-vigan...if i were you ill dropby la union snce its just below baguio.cheers and enjoy ur shoot!!!;p :thumbsup:and its a good idea to get a buddy whose familiar w the place.so that u can drive.meaning u can save time...mind u driving there is different from here.
 

May 25, 2007
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#4
hi zoosh..

i've spent 2 wks up there. only went to baguio, manila and even spent a night in tagaytay. baguio is quite nice. but its very cold as its on the mountains, don forget to wear ur thick jackets, gloves and also throw in the snow cap if need be. when your in baguio, don forget to buy the strawberries, its grown on their own over there like those in cameron highlands.

manila is really boring tho to me. there's nothing much you can do over there. i must say that manila's traffic jams are 100 times worst then those of bangkok. if your inside a vehicle car or taxi. NEVER FORGET to lock your doors. you can be easily rob when your vehicle stops in traffic queue.

tagaytay is laid back and its very cold out there too. its around 4hrs drive from manila. cant say anything much about this place as i spent most of the time inside a car being driven around. good place to snap pictures. you will pass residents houses that still in their portuguese era. beautiful! also, i remember stopping at this road side house shop where they sells the fan knife! you know those knifes you seen swinging in american movies when those small time burglars used that to rob you. apparently, i found out that fan knife was so called invented from someone who is a filipina. that shop was amazing. i remember taking picture of the shop but i could not find the pic now.

its ok to explore. just be careful and watch your things always. hope you enjoy your trip!!
 

May 25, 2007
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#5
oh... before i forget... shopping is expensive in philippines. not dirt cheap like thailand. but booze and ciggies are super duper cheap!! hehe...
 

draeger

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Jul 31, 2006
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#6
oh... before i forget... shopping is expensive in philippines. not dirt cheap like thailand. but booze and ciggies are super duper cheap!! hehe...
Your itinerary sounds good for a 10 day trip. Yeah you should pass by La Union as well because you can find really old churches there to shoot (Spanish era). Actually, old spanish churches are all around the Philippines!

Safety-wise? I guess you just have to do what you usually do when you travel to other places. Be careful and hold on to your stuff. Basic things really. It's not too bad as what others think.


It is not expensive in the Philippines. Definitely cheaper than singapore and I would say competetive with Bangkok in terms of price. You just have to know where to look. ;)

Good luck on your trip and post some pictures on your return.
 

#7
Aug-Sept you might also encounter some rainy days so be prepare..
Your itinerary is great!!! in Sagada you'll find the world famous Banawe rice terraces, Hanging coffin and great caves. In Vigan it's more like a pre-spanish era feel and nice old churches.

Just don't wear any jewelry as not to get the attention, but generally it's safe on those places specially if you can find a local tour guide.

Shopping is actually cheap there if you know the places... and hey we have the best beer in the world... SMB !!! ;)

Enjoy your trip !!! :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
 

#8
oh... before i forget... shopping is expensive in philippines. not dirt cheap like thailand. but booze and ciggies are super duper cheap!! hehe...
expensive???hmmm...not really...it may be abit expensive compare to thailand but I assure you the quality is quite good especially if the the item youre buying are those Philippine Branded Names like Bench...just look for the sale items...

Might as well try other Filipino foods there, each location you're going to visit would have there own niche...the Baguio natives can speak fluent english because of the American Camp there (Camp John Hay)...

in terms of security, it's almost the same as the other places you will go (always be careful with your things)...just enjoy your trip...:) and hopefully you'll share your Philippine Escapade...
 

zoossh

Senior Member
Nov 29, 2005
8,725
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Singapore
#9
Hi Zoossh,

I'm definitely interested in joining up.. though whether i can get my leave approved is another matter..

Any idea what kinda places baguio, banaeu, sagada, vigan are? nvm, I go read up on them..

might be nice also if the trip coincides with one of their festivals as filipinos' holidays can be really colorful..

I'll sound out my filipino ex-colleague..
i like variety, so opted for locations with a local culture - which is why beaches are often not a strong element to me, becos one can hardly tell a beach and a sunset between pattiya to mauritius to florida, unless you have some more prominent landscape, some people and some houses.

unfortunately my leave duration can't be changed easily and we got to dig hard for festivals.

these locations are in the north abt 8hrs on bus (i couldn't find flight details, think probably not), and would provide mainly views of local life, world wonders' rice terraces in baneau/sagada and old historic churches/buildings/horse wagons in vigan. we are still likely to have brief glimpse of beaches either at manila or vigan
 

May 25, 2007
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#10
tts rite. shopping in philippines is of course cheaper than to shop in singapore...

i cld only manage to buy a few pcs of clothes in which aft tt, me wallet got so light. i cldnt bring back a full loaded bag of buys to singapore. n e worst part was i went shopping for dos imitation stuff at tuntuban. so u can imagine me frustrations not getting to shop until i drop...
 

glensky

New Member
Aug 11, 2004
758
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#11
tts rite. shopping in philippines is of course cheaper than to shop in singapore...

i cld only manage to buy a few pcs of clothes in which aft tt, me wallet got so light. i cldnt bring back a full loaded bag of buys to singapore. n e worst part was i went shopping for dos imitation stuff at tuntuban. so u can imagine me frustrations not getting to shop until i drop...
tutuban suppose to be the cheapest.:rolleyes:
 

May 25, 2007
15
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0
#12
dey are just not dirt cheap like shopping in BKK.
 

ryechua

New Member
Mar 4, 2007
103
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Pasir Ris
#13
i like variety, so opted for locations with a local culture - which is why beaches are often not a strong element to me, becos one can hardly tell a beach and a sunset between pattiya to mauritius to florida, unless you have some more prominent landscape, some people and some houses.

unfortunately my leave duration can't be changed easily and we got to dig hard for festivals.

these locations are in the north abt 8hrs on bus (i couldn't find flight details, think probably not), and would provide mainly views of local life, world wonders' rice terraces in baneau/sagada and old historic churches/buildings/horse wagons in vigan. we are still likely to have brief glimpse of beaches either at manila or vigan
you can try going to the following places although i'm not sure if some of it interests you:
- Mine's View park (you can see some native Igorot's in the cliff)
- along Session Road in Baguio
- the PMA (Philippine Military Academy)
- Strawberry Farms
- hanging coffins, caves, waterfalls in Sagada
- of course the rice terraces in Banaue
- in Vigan you can find the Heritage Street (Crisologo Street) which to me is like the China town street here in Singapore although it's not as crowded there
- as suggested by others, you can also try going to La Union. you can see old churches there. you may also want to see the old church in Paoay, Ilocos Norte http://www.worldisround.com/articles/37430/index.html and the old Marcos residence overlooking Paoay Lake

as for advices, just be friendly to the people but not too much. it's not as bad as you think. a local guide would be good to have around too but not necessary. just act as if you have already been there or if you are travelling with someone who is familiar with the place, that would be great too. as a precaution, be careful of those who are too eager to help and show you around. to sum it up, it's the same as going to any other country like India, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, etc.

2cents coming from a Filipino ;)
 

May 10, 2007
150
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#14
somewhat different from what has been mentioned, must try:

food!

Baguio - strawberry jam, ube jam (purple yam paste), peanut brittle and choco flakes. :) get mountain maid brand the first three and mikasan for the last.
Vigan - vigan longganisa, empanada (sort of like beef patties, best taken with the local vinegar) and ukoy (shrimp patty, also to be taken with the local vinegar).

food is much much cheaper than in singapore!! in vigan, you can eat a whole meal for around PHP50.

sagada, not really sure. haven't been there. but i hear the hanging coffins are good, plus you can get cheap weed there.
 

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