My Solo Trip 2015 (Taal Volcano)

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Morning view 

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Self-timer works best with this kind of view.  Right after eating my breakfast.

 The last leg for my Solo Trip consists of me, waking up early in the morning since the call time was 6:30am.  I ate my breakfast, enjoyed my morning coffee and view plus took a couple of photos of the place.  Traveling to Taal Lake took about 20-30 minutes, I was then left with the boat man going to the island where the volcano was located.  The boat ride was around 15 minutes only, it was one of the few trips that I’ve really enjoyed, I love being alone inside the boat, looking at the scenery and again enjoying my ME time.  When I arrived at the shore of the island, I was then escorted towards the horses stalls. At first, I wanted to do a day hike, but my driver told me that the terrain was very tough and the weather was so hot.

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ME-time.

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The road going to the crater.

I am not really a fan of riding horses, I remembered the first time I rode one was in Cebu and I was scared as hell.  Good thing my horseback riding experience was pretty safe, it took more than 30 minutes to get to the peak of the volcano.  I went down halfway the horseback ride to experience a short trek, it was something I had to do for myself.
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Panorama shot of the crater.  Taal Volcano.
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Top: Thrifted
Kimono: Blink Clothing
Skirt: Forever21
Sneakers: Ezra from ZaloraPH
Hat: Felt Hat from Cotton On
Sunnies: Sunnies Studios
Bag: Gifted (LV)
Necklace: Dog Tag from Silverworks
Watch: Fossil
Upon arriving at the peak, my jaw just dropped from the bewitching view of the volcano.  Taal Volcano is known to be the smallest active volcano in the world.  It’s unique location being surrounded by a lake makes it a geological sight. And from my experience, I did not regret spending for this trip.  I was just there staring at the crater, enthralled by its beauty.  I stayed there for almost 30-40 minutes, even though the scorching heat of the sun was very uncomfortable but the residents were very accommodating. Of course, I even asked some of them to take some whole body shots for me, aside from abusing the monopod in taking unlimited selfies, I can say that I am ending my Tagaytay adventure with a blast.
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The view from the other side of the island.
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Almost at the edge of the crater.  It was scary.
I went back to my hotel just in time for checking out and decided to eat my lunch at Bag of Beans.  They are famous for their dessert and drinks.  I had to give it to them, even though their back ribs was not able to beat my love for my local favorite but their delectable desserts captured my love for sweets all over again.  Right now they are tied up with my number one favorite dessert shop, Calea in Bacolod.
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I just went to cheesecake heaven.
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While waiting for my food.
 I had to rush back to Manila because I have a 9pm flight back to Cebu, I also have to meet my sister since it was her birthday that day.  Do you remember when I said during the first day that Manila Traffic did not affect me, I had to take back what I said in my previous post, Manila traffic is crazy, I almost missed my flight, but I think my cab driver was very skillful in finding the correct lane so as not to be stucked forever in Traffic.  I arrived on time before the airlines closed the gates for boarding.
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Me and my lovely sister Anna.
Traveling alone really gives you the chance to discover new things on your own, it is the time to indulge yourself with so many possible things.  Sometimes the perils of traveling alone worries most of our friends and family especially when it involves how safe are we and it aches to face the loneliness when you experience that blissful moment where all you can think of is to spend this amazing experience with someone.  I myself was about to give in to the idea of calling the boyf and asking him to tag along with me, but I decided I have to this for myself.  The fun and excitement will always be treasured forever, the triumphs of each moment will always live in my heart.  It is always wonderful to give yourself the satisfaction of being independent and living for that moment. It does not only make you a better person, but it makes you see the world in a different perspective.
There you go, I hope you’ve enjoyed my Solo Trip as much as I have enjoyed it on my own.  Again, never be afraid to explore the world alone, sometimes we just need that kick in life to give us the fulfilment that we’ve always wanted for in our life.
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Solo Trip 2015 (Tagaytay)

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Fresh from my Manila-Tagaytay trip. All smiles and excited.

My second day for my solo trip was bound for Tagaytay.  I woke up early to pack and prepare my bags for a two hour road trip going to Tagaytay. Checked my itinerary, and used Grab Taxi to get a cab from my hotel going to Starmall which is just near my area.  When I arrived at Starmall it took me a couple of turns to get to the van station, I had to take my lunch at a nearby restaurant and waited for the van to arrive.  The bummer was, you need to wait for the van to get full before departing for Tagaytay.  I was patient enough for an hour but I was quite worried that I might miss the entire day just by waiting so I volunteered to pay for 6 persons all in all.  Good thing the driver told me that he will drop me off right at my hotel.  I arrived at my hotel around 2pm-ish just perfect for checking in.  I will blog about my beautiful hotel in another blog post because Casa Alegria deserves a special post for their astounding scenery and their great service.

After taking a quick shower I then unpacked, prepared my stuff for a quick tour around the city, I planned to visit a few places but due to lack of time I decided to visit the places which I think I will enjoy the most.

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Thank God for the person who invented self-timers. Hhahahaha! 

First stop was the Picnic Grove, my trusted driver was very kind enough to accompany me and assisted me while I roamed around the area.  I decided to try their zip line since it wasn’t as dangerous as compared to the zip lines in Cebu or even in Bukidnon, the only thrill was trying it on your own with nobody to cheer you up.  I was even brave enough to carry my phone with me as I zip away, I was a bit scared that I might drop my phone but what is there left to lose right?  After the zip line experience, I trekked and walked around, took a couple of photos and asks some passersby to take a photo of me.  Trust me, I think I deserve a Miss Congeniality award for being so nice to everyone, not that I am naturally nice, hahahahha!

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Picnic Grove, Tagaytay City

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Denim Dress: Red Blue Jeans

Sneakers: Ezra from ZaloraPH

Bag: Gifted (LV)

Bangles: Forever21

Sunnies: Sunnies Studio

Watch: Fossil

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My second stop was at Starbucks Coffee Tagaytay, why stop at Starbucks when I can visit any Starbucks place in Cebu? But this coffee place is different, I intentionally came here for their spectacular view of the Taal Volcano.  Ordered two desserts and my favorite coffee, spent an hour just sipping my coffee and looking at the view.  It would have been nice if I was heartbroken or I was into some emotional bliss, because the place was just perfect for being so melodramatic.  But even though I wasn’t feeling the dramatic vibe, I was very happy just by enjoying every single minute alone.  I considered it as my ME-time.
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Starbucks Tagaytay
After remotelessly staring at the Taal Volcano, I waited for the sun to set and travelled to my next destination, took a tricycle going to their jeepney station and boarded a jeepney going to Skyranch.  It would have been nice to visit the ranch early in the morning to see the top view of the entire city while riding the Sky Eye, but amazingly the city lights were as beautiful as seeing the entire city during daytime.  I wasn’t even prepared for the cold breeze because my dad said that it’s not as cold as  Baguio, so I never thought of packing a jacket.  Sadly at the time of my visit, the breeze was so cold that I was almost freezing to death.  Took a couple of photos of the area and decided to have my dinner at Leslie’s.  Leslie’s is know for their sumptuous food and yes they did not disappoint, they have literally big servings, so for a solo traveler like me, it is not highly recommended to eat at Leslie’s ALONE,  I wasn’t  even able to finish my Sinigang.  I was about to explode after my dinner.
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I arrived home safely and I settled all my stuff for an early trip at the Taal Volcano, the next day.  Going to Taal was not part of my itinerary but the hell, it’s a one in a lifetime experience, I swear I don’t know when can I visit Tagaytay again so while I still don’t have any important thing on my plate the next day, might as well try a day hike at the famous Volcano.
As always, I did my nightly beauty regime and went to lalala land. My fun, crazy and one of a kind trip to Taal will be posted next, for now enjoy my Tagaytay photos.  Kisses!!!
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P.S.
Tricycle fare are as reasonable as 8 pesos.
But if you have a special route,  you can bargain, I paid 200pesos including tip from my hotel, going to the Picnic Grove then Starbucks Tagaytay.
After my Skyranch adventure there were no longer jeepneys available so I decided to bargain for a tricyle to drop me off at my hotel since there are no taxi cab available in the city.  I paid roughly 150pesos which includes tip.

Solo Trip 2015 (Manila)

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Bags are all packed, reading for boarding.

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Touchdown Manila.

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 My first solo trip was the entire reason why this blog came to be, it was my Bangkok journey which led me to create an online diary of my adventures, my so called independence and little ramblings in life.  I can’t believe that it happened 6 years ago, I had a fancy second solo trip last year, where I met my so called present love of my life.  Of course I am being cynical by saying that he is my present love of my life, I got burnt already a few years back, thinking that all my current boyfriends will be my prince, my everlasting love hahahaha.  So now, I know the drill, dip in love but never get too attached to it.  Enough of that, recently I had my third solo trip, it was not as exciting as being in a foreign country trying to know the language, it was as comforting as my Bacolod Trip but this trip was very different; so different in a way that it was all a feel good happy trip.

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My hotel in Manila.
My exact itinerary was Manila then Tagaytay, I had everything in my planner, the places I want to see, the food that I want to taste, the scenery that I want to experience.  I booked my flight a day before going to Manila (don’t ask why, but honestly, I am not like this, I always book in advance). My hotels were also booked when I landed in Manila, good thing I had several hotel application that eased my booking dilemma; I also installed GrabTaxi which was very handy since I was pretty scared by the cab stories circulating in the city.
My first day was consists of going to important meetings, I also had a short seminar to attend to. Good thing I wasn’t caught up by the Manila Traffic and arrived on time both on my meeting and seminar.  After which I decided to visit Bonifacio Global City, trust me it was torture walking under the scorching heat of the sun, I was lucky enough to visit the head office of ZaloraPH.  It was a fun experience, special thanks to Ed Ryan Lorenzo of Zalora for the quick tour of the place. I then scouted the entire High Street and shopped my hearts out.  I was pretty scared that I will ran out of travel money but I was very clear with my agenda, only buy things that you will be needing for the trip.
After shopping my hearts content, I met with my uncle from my mother’s side, we had dinner and talked about some childhood memories, they were totally curious why I am traveling alone,  my only response was “I love to, it gives me a sense of direction, independence and a thrilling experience I must say.”  Right after dinner,, they dropped me off at my hotel, I took a quick shower, and dozed off to lala land.  But wait! My Solo Trip does not end there, watch out for my Tagaytay escapade on my next blog post.
Enjoy!
(P.S. All photos were taken on my Iphone.)
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Breakfast before my seminar and meeting.
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ZaloraPH Headquarters
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Tired feet.
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Feeling royal with this hat, just perfect for my trip.
Felt Hat from Cotton On.
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Dinner with Uncle Rollie and Fides.
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Dress: Forever21
Jacket: Gifted (Singapore Finds)
Sandals: Ezra from ZaloraPH
Bag: Gifted (Louis Vuitton)
Necklace: Promod
Earrings: H&M
Watch: Fossil

Dessert run with Damnvixen

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Me, Kat and Isabeau.  My fellow Tita.

Last month, I had fun catching up with my blogger friends.  Kat from Frozen Margarita and Isabeau from The Vixen’s Lair.  We had our sumptuous dinner at Cafe Saree, we catched up with our daily gossips and enjoyed the food between updates on our blogs, personal life and work loads.  It was pretty nice spending the evening with my ladies, right after we drop Kat off, Isabeau and I decided to stop over for some desserts.  First stop was at Sprocketeers but sad to say, they don’t have the desserts we were looking for, so we opted to go to Dessert Factory at Lahug Cebu.  After settling down, we then realized that this could be a new topic for our blogs, so we decided to do a bi-monthly date during our monthly periods to give in to our monthly cravings when it comes to Sweets.

Isabeau had their Red Velvet Cake, the cake was very rich and I love the satisfaction of the creamcheese on it, however I picked the weirdest combination for dessert, their chocolate milkshake and their Mango Napoleones.  The chocholate milkshake was so heavy it made me full right away but oh dear, the mango napoleones is so perfect to satisfy my cravings of Bacolod delicacies. Dessert Factory did an amazing job, in adding mango on their napoleones to reduce the sweetness of the dessert.  I really recommend their Mango Napoleones, I’ve heard they are always sold out.  So I leave you with these stunning food photos to make you itch and head directly to do your own dessert run.

ENJOY!

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PensandLens x Damnvixen

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Dessert Factory’s Red Velvet Cake

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Chocolate Milkshake and their Mango Napoleones

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Mandatory, duo Selfie.

 

The Cuartel

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The Cuartel, Oslob Cebu

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Nuestra Señora de la Inmaculada Concepcion Church

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I told you it’s perfect for an OOTD shot.

Part of our Summer outing last year, was a short trip at The Cuartel, since the boyf and I were already in the area after our Whale Shark adventure, we opted to visit the heritage park in Oslob.  Oslob is a municipality located in the southeastern part of the province of Cebu.  It is very famous for their whale-shark watching activities, but the boyf was more ecstatic upon knowing the history and whereabouts of the heritage park.  The Cuartel is located front-right of the church of Oslob, just outside the perimeter stone fence and near the sea, stands an unfinished building made of coral blocks resembling a Spanish-era barracks.  This was intended to be the Cuartel, barracks for Spanish soldiers or guardia civil (Wikipedia, Oslob Cebu ).  Of course, knowing the history made the boyf very interested to explore the area.

We got up at exactly at 6am to drive to the Cuartel, it was gloomy but he was a happy kid touching the coral walls and discovering the remnants of the past.  He was even braved enough to climb the walls and played a part as a Spanish soldier.  We continued to walked and discovered the area and enjoyed the breeze of the sea as early as 6am.  I cannot say much about the ruins, I guess I don’t really appreciate this kind of art, however, the boyf has always been a fan of history, trust me he watches a lot of history channel.  But what I did was take endless photos of myself because the place looks so surreal and perfect for a selfie, portrait shots and a bit of travel OOTD.  Hahahhaha! Enjoy the photos.

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Dress: Forever21

Hoodie: Forever21

Flip-Flop: Havaianas

Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs Tote Bag

Sunnies: H&M

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My waiting in vain pose.

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And the boyf’s waiting but smiling pose.

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Caught doing a selfie. Hahahahha!

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HOORAY!