Travel Pills & Elixirs

Dr. Jim Nicolai, a former Medical Director of an Integrative Wellness Program, once said – “Where health is the destination, wellness is the journey…

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It isn’t a secret to my friends and colleagues that I have this undeniable knack for travelling and sense of adventure. I like to be marooned by the sometimes unforgiving sun or get soaked by the unpredictable rain whether I am at the beach or on top of the mountain. Weird as it may seem to some people, but getting lost nonchalantly in a foreign city enlivens my spirit. But these sense of enthusiasm and interest dampen when I get sick. That is why, I try my best to make sure that I am always at my best element… that I am always healthy – physically, emotionally, and even mentally!

A previous post of mine tackled about the basic things that I pack inside my (travel bag). One of the essentials is your personal medicine kit. So in this write up, I am sharing to you my simple health habits, the products I use and believe in, and some secrets (my travel pills and elixirs).

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Getting stressed and experiencing fatigue are common during travel. And surprisingly, there is no single cure for stress. If our coping mechanism isn’t able to resolve these stressors, they eventually take a toll on us and could lead to symptoms like headache, body pain, cough and colds, sleepless nights, and many more.

I am pretty sure these warning signs have at one point hindered you from going on a trip or a long-time planned beach getaway and the like. And it sucks to think that all the excitement would totally die down just because you are sick. I hate having headache, and I despise having cough and colds. So what do I do? As a pharmacist, I actually have some personal rituals and favorite products (yes, you read that right I have my personal biases). Hahaha! So read along.

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To make sure that I won’t get sick, I hydrate myself with enough fluid (not necessarily water) like juice, tea, and energy drinks (hello, Gatorade ® which is still my super tried and tested hydrating fluid). I eat alooooot of fruits. Shout out to my all-time favorites – watermelon, strawberries, bananas, and oranges (well, whichever is in season). If my trip involves some mountain climbing activity, I allot some time to do running and brisk walking.

Pack my med kit. So what’s inside it? I consider the following my travel pills and elixirs:

  • Vitamins (Enervon Activ ® now, Enervon ® syrup when I was young. Because it’s our mom’s choice.)
  • Hand Sanitizer and isopropyl alcohol (not ethyl)
  • Paracetamol – this is for my sudden headache which could really turn my mood 360 degrees, hahaha)
  • Tuseran capsule (I go for this one to manage my cough and colds).
  • Some anti-histamine (because at times I experience cold allergies).
  • Antidiarrheals (I usually go for loperamide).
  • Ginger candies like Gingerbon ® to suppress dizziness and vomiting.
  • Band-Aid J, cotton, wet wipes
  • Povidone Iodine (my antiseptic of choice)
  • Insect repellant lotions/ sprays (Off ® with chamomile is my choice).
  • Strepsils ® – favorite lozenge!

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During my recent Europe trip, my preparedness was tested when on several occasions I some sort of got sick. Traveling around the Baltic area (Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania) was memorable because I spent several days (7 am to 9 pm), walking around the key cities. I had terrible headaches at night and even got cough and colds. These were most likely due to the warm weather during the day and the nasty and biting cold temperature at night. I am really glad I have my anti-fever/ mild painkillers with me. Good thing too, I packed several Tuseran ® 2-in-1 capsules for my cough and colds. Since I am compliant with whatever medicines I take, in no time, I was back at my normal state – healthy and kicking. (PS: Being compliant with your medication’s dose and schedule is very essential to getting treated. That’s me being a pharmacist).

 

From cold Iceland to rainy Poland to humid Manila – my body was probably shocked with the outright adjustments it had to undergo. So I had another episode of cough and colds (and sore throat). This time, because of this sudden change in temperature, I had developed allergies (urticaria). Could you just imagine the burden, especially at night? I was worried because I have scheduled speaking engagement in Zamboanga in 4 days’ time.

Coincidentally, I was talking to physician friend of mine one time when she suggested that I try the new Tuseran Night ®. Keen about the medication I intend to take, I went on to search what it contains. Since it both contains diphenhydramine and phenylpropanolamine, I was convinced it will do wonders for my cough, cold, and allergies. (Shout out to Doc Nessa for the suggestion!) I still have a few pieces of my Tuseran capsules and cetirizine (anti-allergy meds) left from my EU trip but I opted to try out the new Tuseran Night ® (which by the way is in syrup form). And boy I am glad I did go for it because it’s like an all-in-one form of relief for my cough, my colds, my allergies PLUS I get to sleep better. Thanks to diphenyhydramine’s anti-allergy effect.  (Ooooooooooops, sorry guise if my pharma background is making your nose bleed upon reading these). Hahaha!

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Aside from preparing those medications, during any of my travels, I also drink a lot of tea products. Lemon – Ginger Tea and Black Mint Tea are my favorite. If I could get hold of honey, I would often mix it with my drink. Also, I like having probiotic drinks that usually helps me with my GI problems.

I have asked my equally adventurous friends to share some of their health tips and practices.

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The information I have shared here are my personal choices. Of course it is still best to go visit your general practitioner, or a doctor who can specialize the medicine you need during your travel/s. But, it is also good to note that as individuals who like travelling, make sure you always have an extra space for your own medication kit!

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Thank you to Jan of The Kapampangan Traveller, Hance of The Restless Pinoy Traveler, Jeff of Donde si Jepepips, Jonel of Eljontology, Jit (aka @aren_emdi), claro (aka @claro.i) and Aljen (aka @dirtikid).

So remember, stay healthy and safe travels. Don’t be a wasted soul, be JUANderust. Take it easy everyJUAN!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be a Travelspiration

So I just coined a new word for my self called “travelspiration”. I tried to google it up afterwards, and i’m pretty surprised some people use it too. Obvious as it is, “travelspiration” is a portmanteau of the words travel and inspiration.

Traveling has to be one of the most satisfying experiences a person can do in his/her lifetime. Many times, I have claimed that traveling awakens my soul, arouses my senses, and colors my world in a new hue. It is a way of living, it is my way of living…

So here are some thoughts that have personally inspired/ motivated me during my travels. I have made use some of my favorite travel photographs.

Warsaw PolandBratislava SlovakiaBucharest RomaniaRiga LatviaBudapest HungaryVienna AustriaVilnius LithuaniaComo ItalyReykjavik IcelandTallinn EstoniaYogya IndonesiaRotorua New Zealand

Don’t be a wasted soul, be JUANderlust. Take it easy everyJUAN.

*PS: Will add more as I travel around. You are most welcome to share these “travelspiration.

What’s in Your (Travel) Bag?

One particular thing I am asked about, as a frequent traveler, is regarding my packing strategy and what stuff I do pack. Packing your bag, perhaps, is one essential matter during travel. So here is a quick guideline on how I pack and what things I usually bring.

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First things first: I decide on my main luggage. Factors that dictate my choice of luggage include duration of travel, mode/s of travel (whether plane, bus, or even boat), and general itinerary (is it a local or international travel? Does my travel require hopping from one province or country to another?)

Generally though, I go for something that is lightweight (but big enough to contain all my basics) and physically more comfortable to carry around. So with these in mind, I would often use my travel backpack-slash-hiking-bag that has been with me for 12 years now. I like it since it is able to fit all my things and more importantly, it is easy to carry.

How about a “rolling luggage”? I am not a fan of rolling luggage. Having wheels could be very comfortable to most people I know but I don’t find it practical enough especially if my travel requires some “roughing out”.

If I have a short travel (a weekend trip maybe), I like using a duffel bag. Again, it is lightweight, and easy to carry. Also, most of the time, I have a hand carry/ carry-on bag that is usually a mail bag where I stash my most essential stuff (including my rosary). This is essential especially when you have multiple destinations.

After having thought of which luggage to choose, the next thing I usually do is make a checklist of the things I intend to bring with me. I have a notebook/ pad where I write everything I need. Some people resort to using their cellphone’s organizer but I’m pretty old-school, I like the idea of jotting down a list using my pencil, and crossing out some whenever the need to leave some.

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So what should one pack? Here is my basic list:

Lightweight clothing that can be layered Camera/ batteries/ charger/ SD card Travel pillow (neck pillow)
Long-sleeved shirts Pajamas/sleepwear Cell phone and charger
Sweater or cardigan or a windbreaker Mini flashlight Eye mask and ear plugs
T-shirts and tank tops Eyeglasses/ Sunglasses and glasses case Walking shoes
Pants and shorts (that does not require using a belt) Cap/ Hat Electric converters and adaptors
Socks/ Undergarment/ swim trunks (in case I’m swimming) Easy dry, lightweight towel Travel apps to help with language, directions (l like maps.me), & money conversion

PS: I also pack some energy bars and candies, and some little souvenirs I can give to new friends I’ll meet along the way.

And for a male (my) TOILETRIES bag, it contains the following:

Toothbrush, toothpaste,  mouthwash Sunscreen/ lotion Medicine kit (I have a separate post called Travel Pills and Elixirs)
Hair gel Mosquito repellant (lotion) Shaver
Shampoo Wet wipes/ tissue Nail clippers

Once I have enlisted them, I try my best to organize my stuff inside my bag in such a way that I am able to maximize every space. This can be challenging (and frustrating at times). I used to pack my clothes in a zip lock bag labeled per day. I still do if it is a short trip. But if it is a long trip, I do it differently. I pack most of my clothes still in zip lock bags of varying sizes and organized based on the kind of outfit. I usually roll them as I find this technique less space consuming.

Packing my toiletries in its bag is another thing. My choice of toiletry bag is something that is transparent, easy to wipe, and water-resistant of course. Always keep in mind to bring only a small amount of your liquid items. I also try to label each one of them to avoid confusion and for easy access.

Next thing I prepare are the essential travel documents, cash, and cards. All of which I place in a simple travel organizer that can hold my passport, identification card/s, ATM and credit cards (to which I remind my bank/ credit card company that I am going abroad if it is an international trip), boarding pass/es, money/ coins, and a pen. I also keep a folder for my travel insurance documents, print out of my travel itineraries (although I also keep an electronic form in my phone), a list of hotel contact information, emergency contacts and important addresses like that of a couchsurfing host, guide books/ maps, and my travel notebook.

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After packing everything, I check the weight of my luggage to make sure I won’t pay extra money during check-in. I also try to walk around with my luggage for my body to have a feel of its weight. That’s it. And by the way, don’t forget to prepare the most important things during travel — enough strength (physical, mental and emotional), and a happy, optimistic disposition.

So, whether this your maiden solo travel or you are a seasoned wanderlust, I hope these simple guideline based on what I do, would be of help to you in a certain way. Have fun and always travel safe and with a smile.

Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy everyJuan.

 

 

 

Campuestohan (Negros, Philippines)

Nestled between two of the most advanced cities in the province of Negros Occidental – Bacolod City and Talisay City, Campuestohan Highland Resort is a massive, 5-hectare property overlooking Mount Makawili. In recent years, this theme park has attracted locals, and other visitors further catapulting the island region as a tourist hub.

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The highland resort, that gets chilly in the afternoon and at nighttime, have the following amenities/ facilities: swimming pools, a restaurant pavilion, a coffee shop and ice cream parlor, children’s playground, gigantic statues (from King Kong to various Marvel superheroes), spa service, photo services and a function hall.

If one intends to do a day trip, the following should be noted: An entrance fee of Php150.00 per person although children 2 years old and below are exempted from paying the fee and from the headcount.  If a child is over 2 years, he/ she is subject to paying the entrance fee at the same rate as adults.

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Various cottages are available. From a Big Cottage (Good for 20 persons – P1,000.00) while a Small Cottage (Good for 12-15 persons – P600.00). If you are a group of 10 and below, an Umbrella Hut can be rented for only P500.00.

Overnight stay would be great as the resort have several unique and picturesque accommodations to choose from. These ranges from a Log Cabin (P3,000.00 to P5,000.00), Bonita Huts that look like hobbit homes (P2500.00), Indian Teepee Hut Family Room (P5,000.00), and King Kong Room (P6,000.00). These are provided with en-suite bathrooms, while some of them have air-conditioning. Also, breakfast and park entry are complimentary.

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The most exciting features of this theme park are its various rides that include the following:

RATE of VARIOUS RIDES

Zipline P200.00/person Hamster Wheel P 100.00/person
Rope Course P200.00/person Grand Carousel P 30.00/person
Sky Bicycle P 100.00/person (one-way) Mini Train P 30.00/person
Horseback Riding (15 minutes) P150.00/person Wave Pool

I have heard that more exciting rides will be opened soon.


So, what are you waiting for? Bring your family, and or barkada or even workmates in this mountainous playground. Take note that reservations must be made at least 3 days ahead if resort visit will fall on a weekend and at least 1 day before if coming on a weekday.
Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy ebri”juan”…

Bantug Lake Ranch (Negros Occidental, PH)

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better. — Albert Einstein

Summer is over. That’s what I thought. After my consecutive stint in Indonesia, Singapore and Cebu (because of work related stuff), I thought my summer was over. A week after my Cebu business trip, I was sent to Bacolod. I grabbed the opportunity to see what more to Bacolod besides the many sweet eats I have been exposed to during my 1st 3 visits.

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Campuestuhan Highlands was on top of my list. I have been wanting to go there but time would not just let me. So I have made a point that I’ll see it this time (separate blog on Campuestuhan soon). Several people, I talked to mentioned about a lake found on the way to Campuestuhan. It was my first time to hear about it. It’s called Bantug Lake Ranch — dubbed as Bacolod’s newest picnic ground located in Barangay Alangilan, Bacolod City (the very same route going to Campuestuhan).

I did a quick research about the place before I decided to go and check it out. Bantug Lake Ranch is a ranch with a man-made lake. (The only man-made lakes I have seen prior to this are Burnham Lake in Baguio City and Lake 77 in Bislig City). With my yearning to spend some serene moments with nature, I took a cab and went to visit Bantug.

After a good 20-30 minutes, I was there already. I paid the entrance fee of Php50.00 and I started my photo walk within the ranch. True to what some blogs I have quickly read, the place radiates the tranquility of nature. I immediately noticed the lake surrounded by verdant flora. There were several boats and kayaks docked while a few ducks were swimming. I went around the lake to take photos.

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Near the lake is a koi pond where a number of koi fishes are. There is this walkway that is lined with yellow bell plants that look really beautiful. There were other animals like horses and birds that I saw from afar. I was contented walking around the lake area so I decided to just stay there. What I love the most were the beautifully lined lanzones (Lancium domesticum) trees. They were such a delight to the eyes.

It was indeed a relaxing morning at the ranch despite the gloomy weather then. I was able to talk to one of the ranch’s caretaker who shared that people can actually do a lot of activities within the ranch. One can try horseback riding or feed the various animals. I would have wanted to go on kayaking or boat riding (or fishing) then but I had a limited time so I guess I should come back next time. I asked if camping was allowed and I was all smiles to hear that they allow it. (Even bonfires are allowed). I was also told that the place may also serve as a venue for events like birthday parties and weddings to which they provide catering services. Interestingly, the ranch has an organic vegetable farm too.

It was indeed a short but relaxing visit at the Bantug Lake Ranch. So if you want to commune with nature and you are in Bacolod, consider including this place in your itinerary. For questions (and reservation), you may call these landline numbers (034) 213-1916 / (034) 435-5306. You may also visit their website at http://bantugranch.com/

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy ebri’juan’…

You can click on this —-> Negros sights for more!

Luna’s Bahay na Bato (La Union, PH)

At the end of the day, it isn’t where I came from. Maybe home is somewhere I’m going and never have been before.” – Warsan Shire

Through the years, I have developed this special interest over art galleries of different kinds. What has lured me the most are those that showcases wood and stone craftsmanship. So when my nomadic feet led me to my mom’s home province, I decided to check out myself this house made of stones in the seaside town of Luna in La Union.

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The town of Luna is famed for the abundant supplies of pebble stones that come in different shapes and sizes (and even color). The locals have made a livelihood out of these stones by hand-picking and classifying them before they are sold. So, it isn’t much a surprise to see houses made of these natural resources. One particular house that has attracted both locals and visitors is “Bahay na Bato”.

I have heard (and seen photos) of this house during my years of teaching way back in Baguio. This house was built as a family rest house. I later learned that it is actually a property of one of my student’s family. Because of the undeniable and superb art works the house showcases, the mayor of Luna saw the likelihood of this property as a tourism attraction drawer. The mayor was able to convince the owner and now, the house turned art gallery, I open for public visit.

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“Bahay na Bato” as it is simply called, displays a magnum opus of various stone carvings by Mr.  Von Kim (a Korean national), who was tasked to create the numerous art pieces inside and outside the Bahay na Bato grounds. Aside from the carved stones, one would also be mesmerized by the various wooden crafts. I also like the fact that there are trees within the premises.

The house per se is a 2-storey construction with which the ground floor has 2 private rooms. The flooring is made of palm-sized pebble stones – such a delight to the eyes. The first floor also serve as a reception area where a mini-store is also put up. The 2nd floor have different display items like lamps, kitchen utensils, and more wood art pieces. The thing I like the most is that it has a stunning panoramic view of beach.

Outside the house, more carved stone and wood artifacts can be seen – from animal formed stones to some naughty carvings that will make you grin. I also saw a set of clay pot display. And by the way, there is also a small pool near the lawn area.

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How to Reach Bahay na Bato:

Ride a bus bound for Vigabn, Abra or Laoag. Inform the driver that you be dropped off the town of Balaoan. Bus stop is usually infornt of the Balaoan church. Walk your way to a 711 store that is near the Balaoan municipal hall. There are tricycle bound for Luna. Fare is Php10/person. Once in Luna, take another tricycle ride to Brgy. Nalvo Norte. Just tell the driver you are going to Bahay na Bato. Fare is also Php10.00. If you are coming from San Fernando in La Union, there are direct jeepneys from San Fernando City to Luna.

“Bahay na Bato” collects P20 entrance fee for adults, while kids below four years old are admitted for free. It is open from 6am to 8pm daily. It is located in Brgy. Nalvo Norte, Luna, La Union.

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy ebri’juan’…

Binurong Point (Catanduanes, PH)

Verdant, rolling terrain leading to towering cliffs and gargantuan boulders constantly pounded by enormous waves will greet you after a good 20 – 30 minutes’ walk under a forested canopy. I was in disbelief for a moment and my senses were all in awe. I had to pause for a few minutes just to digest everything my eyes were marveling at. I was at Binurong Point – one of the island province of Catanduanes’ best kept secrets (no more).

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I first saw a photo of this Batanes-like vista in Facebook posted by a friend’s friend a month ago. Since then, I have been keeping an eye on the possibility of checking it out myself. Two weeks later, it was featured in a television show. Videos were shown and that sealed the deal for me. So after my Apo Reef breakaway, I decided to make my way to the Land of Howling Wind the looooong way (since booking a plane ticket would probably cost me much).

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Prior to this Catanduanes trip, all I honestly knew about the easternmost Luzon province is that it is frequented by typhoons. But since it is summer here in the Philippines, I am pretty much confident it wouldn’t be raining.

This write-up is just 1 of several posts I am making for my Catanduanes getaway. I opted to write about Binurong Point first as a lot of my friends have been asking about it (and going over the internet, the only information source on Binurong Point is that of Go, Catanduanes).

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So how do you get to Binurong Point?

From Manila, the easiest/ fastest way is to book a flight to Virac (Catanduanes’ capital). Cebu Pacific flies every Monday – Wednesday – Friday (You can check out their website for specific time of flight). One may also fly from Manila to Naga (in Camarines Sur) or to Legazpi (in Albay). From these places, ride a bus or van that is bound for Tabaco City. Since plane tickets become pretty much pricey if you haven’t booked your ticket in advance, then you might want to do the longer route.

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Which is – by land, then by water.

From Manila (Cubao or Pasay), one can take a Virac – bound bus (RSL Lines) or a Tabaco City (in Albay) bound bus (in case all Virac-bound buses are fully booked). Travel time is around 10 – 12 hours depending on Manila traffic and how many times your bus would want to have a stop. Once in Tabaco City, proceed to the city port wherein one has several options as to which sea vessels to ride. You may opt to ride a RO-RO (which takes around 4 hours or so, depending on condition of the sea) or go for the fast craft that runs around 1.5 to 2 hours only (caution because it really is nauseating)!

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Schedule are as follow: (Fare ranges from Php150 child/senior citizen to Php300 for adult in an air-conditioned area).

Tabaco Port to Virac Port:
Depart: 0630AM Arrive: 1030AM

Virac Port to Tabaco Port:
Depart: 0100PM Arrive: 0500PM

***For fast craft ferry: The ferry departs at 9:30 a.m. from the capital town of Virac and arrives in Tabaco City at 11:30. It leaves from Tabaco City again at 12:30 and reaches San Andres at 2 p.m. Finally, it returns to Tabaco City at 4 p.m.

Tabaco Port to San Andres (Calolbon) Port:
Depart: 0800AM Arrive: 1100AM
Depart: 0100PM Arrive: 0400PM

San Andres (Calolbon) Port to Tabaco Port:
Depart: 0800AM Arrive: 1100AM
Depart: 0100PM Arrive: 0400PM
Please Note: Ferry Schedule may change without prior notice

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If your port of disembarkation is at San Andres (Cololbon Port), you will have to ride either a jeepney or a van that is bound for Virac. But if your route is a Tabaco – Virac route, then once in Virac you have the option of either riding a van or  a jeepney bound to Baras/Gigmoto or any other towns of Catanduanes that passes by Baras.

Once in Baras, ride a tricycle or a motorcycle that will take you to Binurong Point. During my visit, I was staying at Puraran (also in Baras) so I had to take a motorcycle from there. Depending on your haggling skills, range of fare would be Php 300 – 500.

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The way to Binurong Point is almost concreted with only about ¼ of the road unpaved. Upon reaching the registration site at Brgy. Guinsaanan, you will be required to pay Php20.00 registration fee and Php10.00 parking fee. A guide will be designated to you/your group. (I did have a little chit chat with the owner of the hut I stayed at Puraran. He mentioned that guide fee is at Php150.00. However, my habal-habal driver said that there weren’t any fixed amount yet so you could just give any amount).

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The trek to Binurong Point is relatively easy and quick. Depending on your usual pace, it’ll take a good 20 – 30 minute walk under a shady forested area. Once you reach Binurong, you’ll be amazed as to how stunning it is. No need to compare it with Batanes or even Ireland because Binurong has its own charm and beauty.

The personal challenge when I was there (being a photo enthusiast) is which portion of the place should I photograph first. I felt my eyes confused several times and my heart skip every time I gaze at Binurong’s splendor.

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I went there around 4 in the afternoon. It was a good time as the sun is no longer that warm, and good enough to provide natural light to my photographs. My guide said that the best time to visit Binurong is early in the morning as the sun rises at this side of Catanduanes.  Have also noticed that the area can be a good camping ground. So I thought to myself, the next time I come and see Binurong, I’ll bring a tent a bunch of friends and together we will share the serenity of this stunning place.

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy ebri’juan”…

 

 

 

Why Travel?

On October 15, 2008 – I made my very first blog about why I got hooked with travelling. It was a Taglish write-up. And today, to celebrate the 1st year anniversary of my travel blog here in wordpress, I am sharing several paragraphs of that writing about why I travel. Going over my reasons then, it seems to me that they are still the answers to why I continue to travel. Read along 🙂

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I like to travel because of the following reasons:

Una sa lahat, exciting bumyahe. Some people term it as stepping out of their comfort zone. Iyong iba naman, naniniwala na its a way of pushing boundaries and exploring; but it all boils down to the same thing — to take a trip is EXCITING! EXHILIRATING! ELECTRIFYING! (isipin niyo na lahat ng naguumpisa sa letter E). Hindi ba at nakakaexcite na you get to see new things, experience new sensation, o kaya eh makatikim ng pagkain na bago sa panlasa mo. Isipin mo, kapag naglalakbay ka — every step you take is something you’ve never taken before, especially on places less traveled. Sometimes, you don’t even know what to expect. And that, makes it more exciting…

Ikalawa, travelling (especially kung mag-isa ka) is something ENLIGHTENING. Kung bumibiyahe ka, mag-isa man o may kasama eh paniguradong marami kang malalaman tungkol sa sarili mo (at pati na rin sa mga kasama mo). Ika nga ng isang quote — “The best way to know somebody is to travel with them”. Totoo ito. Naniniwala ako dito. To travel is to learn about your limits, your strengths, your weakness and even discover things you have never imagined that you can actually do. WE LEARN ABOUT WHAT WE CAN BE, BUT HAVEN’T BEEN THUS FAR. We learn about emotional stress one can deal with, what we dare, what we don’t. Ngayon, mas masasabi ko na mas naging flexible ako sa maraming bagay…. Narealize ko na mabubuhay ako kahit walang mga luho… na marami akong kayang gawin na mga bagay-bagay na once I would not dare do or thought I can do.

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Ikatlo, EXPERIENCE. Bukod sa masayang isipin na may bago kang lugar na mapupuntahan o bagong taong makikilala — doing all that new stuff is something extremely educational. Experiential learning sabi nga sa Pschology. The places, the people, the things you do are not those things that one will be forgetting soon. Hindi gaya ng mga inaral mo sa exam na pagkatapos ng pagsusulit, kinakalimutan na. Ung mga naeexperience sa mga ganitong lakad, usually stays forever or would leave a certain mark to you. An experience may change the way we think about things – again from people to culture to places. In some cases, some will even change our own life. It usually brings things into perspective.

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The fourth reason is something very different for all of us who like to travel. It is because, the third reason is considered to be something VERY PERSONAL. May kanya kanya tayong espesyal na dahilan kung bakit gustong gusto nating maglakbay. Yung iba, they love how simple life is on the road, iyong iba naman eh dahil sa gusto nilang matuto ng iba’t ibang bagay tungkol sa isang lugar (ie history, culture)… Others do it to capture their stolen youth, or to make up for some precious time… For some, it is a must because if they don’t travel, they wouldn’t feel satisfied or complete. Yung iba siguro, its a form of escape, a form of searching for something missing…  Well, I share most of these reasons most of the time. But if there is one thing I have come to realize after several years of traveling around my beautiful Philippines eh heto iyon. I like travelling because i wish that others traveled more. Totoo iyan. Proud ako na panay ang hikayat ko sa mga kakilala ko na sumama sa akin… I feel extremely happy everytime I get the chance to share my experiences and stories. It feels good pag may nakoconvince ako to travel and see places — malayo man o malapit.

Lastly, traveling is LIVING. Lahat tayo gusto natin yung pakiramdam na WE ARE FREE, that WE ARE ALIVE. We want to live life to its fullest. My travels made me realize that communities are boundaries. Boundaries, somehow, have invisible walls. I want to break these walls, I want to break these boundaries. Sabi ko nga sa 4th reason ko, I like the idea that everyone gets to travel. Bukod sa masaya ung pakiramdam na may nahikayat ka, it feels even better to see them appreciate also the things that captured your heart. Most importantly, they to are able to break boundaries.  Gusto ko ‘to dahil naniniwala ako na mas magkakaintindihan tayo kung nakita mo rin ant naranasan mo rin ang mga nakita ko at naranasan ko.

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Ikaw, ano mga dahilan mo? Bakit gusto mong naglalakbay? Kung hindi ka mahilig, bakit hindi mo subukan? You will never know, it might unlock something new in you.

I don’t know what the future holds for me. But one thing is certain, I will continue going to places. Kahit saan pa yan. Meron o walang pera. Marami pa akong gustong mapuntahan. Marami pa akong gustong malaman. At sana, sa susunod, kasama ko pa rin kayo… kasama ko na kayo…

Don’t be a wasted soul, be ‘juan’derlust. take it easy ebriwan.

Yay! Happy 1st anniversary to my travel blog, No Juan is an Island!!!

 

 

Gumasa Beach (Sarangani, PH)

Every time I stand before a beautiful beach, its waves seem to whisper to me: If you choose the simple things and find joy in nature’s simple treasures, life and living need not be so hard. — Psyche Roxas-Mendoza

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If you find yourself traveling to the southeastern part of Mindanao Philippines, then all of a sudden someone invites you to do some beachneering activities, do not be surprised. One notable and slowly becoming a tourist getaway is Gumasa Beach found in Sarangani Bay.

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Yes, you have read it right! There is a beach paradise at Pacquiao’s turf. It boasts off fine and powdery sand that further glows during sundown. So when you want to have a beach that’s serene and not so crowded (yet), then consider experiencing Glan, Sarangani’s pride – Gumasa Beach.

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be ‘juan’derlust. Take it easy ebri’juan’…

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Banacon Mangrove Forest (Bohol, PH)

The Banacon Island Mangrove Forest is a 425 hectares mangrove forest in Getafe, Northern Bohol. About 15 hectares are on dry land and 410 hectares are on the tidal salt flat area. This widespread mangrove plantation is now a rising tourist attraction in the Visayan island province. The charming trails beneath intersecting mangrove (Rhizophora stylosa) trees are gasping to behold. These trees primarily make up the river systems, estuaries and off-shore islands of the Bohol province.

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This mangrove forest has attracted an increasing number of local and foreign tourists who come to do stand-up paddle boarding and swim with a diverse species of marine organisms at the 272-square meter Danajon Bank – a Double Barrier Reef near the area.

With the continuous propagation of these mangroves, fish production has tremendously increased. To date, it is now considered as the biggest man-made mangrove plantation in Asia.

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So the next time you go visit Bohol, make your way to this beautiful place up north.

Don’t be a wasted soul, be ‘juan’derlust. Take it easy ebri’juan’.