Saturday, February 14, 2015

Travel Guide to Tanay, Rizal


Tanay is just 1 - 2 hours away from Manila, depends on the traffic. It has been serving a lot of tourists, mostly locals, a great escape from the bustling sound of Metro Manila. I don't know much about Tanay, whenever I hear about it all I can remember is that it is a place where Joseph Estrada was house arrested! Nothing more, nothing less.

Until recently, a friend of mine asked me if I have been to a falls in Tanay. I was puzzled if there is such a thing and I even doubt if it is really stunning.You can't blame me, it just an hour away from Manila and we all know how polluted Manila is!

Anyway, me and my travel buddies/photographers (c) Sir Elvis for the photos below (naks naman), set a date to explore Tanay for a day. I did not do a full research about Tanay, I just asked a co-blogger, Sir Jay, who has been there a week before ours. Since this blog is all about my travel, itinerary, how to's; I'm gonna give you guys my travel tips to Tanay! HANE?

This is our itinerary, hope this will help you.


1. If you are travelling with group like 4 - 5 pax, you may opt to rent a tricycle for a day. Rate ranges from 800 - 1000 depending on your haggling skills! Though if you are a group of 10, renting a van is the best option as there are no jeeps passing thru Daranak and Calinawaan Cave.

2. TRAVEL EARLY! As in 4am - 5am. To avoid heavy flow of traffic in Ortigas Ext., -___-

3. Gates of Daranak Falls opens at 8:00am, be there before the said time as it gets crowded. If you don't like being in a crowded place, Daranak Falls is not for you. Though I was able to get a good shot! ;)

4. Never miss Batlag Falls, yes the entrance is VERY EXPENSIVE!!! For the record, it costs 120 Php per head. I know, even I contest about it but I have no choice. IT WAS PRIVATELY OWNED BY A GREEDY INDIVIDUAL!!! Nevertheless, I enjoyed it because I was the only one swimming during that time!!! hahaha. #RareMoments

Photo Credit: Sir Elvis

5. Calinawaan Cave is not a must see. It is also privately owned by a clan and not properly maintained. If you are a celebrity fan, you'll recognize the place as it is one of the favorite locations for shooting. One of the recent movies filmed there was Bonifacio.

Photo Credit : Mark Garcia

6. Visit the old church of San Ildefonso, the one in the town center. It has a sculpted tree with an image of Mother and Child(Not so sure about it). It is worth visiting plus there is a saying that you can wish in a church when it is your first time to visit it.

Photo Credit : Frezian Villanueva

7. REGINA ROSARI. Largest Mama Mary I have ever seen! Reminder: Shorts, mini skirts and sleeveless are not allowed to go up to the statue but they are giving long skirt ("tapis"). The view up there is very relaxing, the lush greenery of Sierra Madre and the fresh air! Ahhhh!!!! Though it is really crowded -____-

Photo Credit: Frezian Villanueva

8. If you are a fan of balancing stones, you find a lot of it at the river below the gates of Daranak Falls!

Credits to Sir Elvis


 Hope I helped you in any way. Please leave a comment if you have any clarifications and I'll be glad to answer it all.



Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Hof Gorei Beach Resort, Samal Island, Davao del Norte


Samal Island or also known as IGaCoS (Island Garden City of Samal) is a small island in Davao Gulf under the jurisdiction of Davao del Norte. It is nearby Davao City and been a hideaway for people who wants to escape their city lives. Only 10 - 45 minutes away from Davao depends on where you want to go. 

Hof Gorei Beach Resort is second to none accommodation in Samal Island, it may not be as prestigious as the Pearl Farm because it is privately owned by a Filipina whose husband is an Austrian. One of their unique features is that they assign personal butler in every room. In our case we had two butlers because I booked two rooms. 

I will give you a list on why to choose Hof Gorei Beach Resort as your next destination in Samal. 

1. They are easy to deal with, their reservation officer is very accommodating and ensured our boarding in their transfer (Yes, they provide free transfers from port to resort v.v.).

It was a large pump boat and we were the only guests that were transported

2. Your personal butlers are very attentive and will ensure that all your needs are given! Kudos for this and for preparing a romantic dinner for my family! (It was my parent's anniversary) We experienced a not usual dinner because of their set up.
Meet our personal butlers! Not just one, but TWO!

The Dinner with candlelight. Soooo romantic

3. Their food is surprisingly delicious and fresh. I loved their Puting Paksiw! :) 

4. The attic room is the best! Very spacious and has a nice view from lush green landscape to a relaxing view of the ocean overlooking Mt. Apo!  :) You should stay at this room as it provides tropical vibe to your vacation. Highly recommended but it is not advisable for oldies as it requires going upstairs.

5. It was like we rented the whole place, it was not crowded compared to Pearl Farm! You will surely enjoy the serenity of this place from white sand shore to lush green landscape to their swimming pool. It may not have activities but enjoying the nature is already time consuming! :)

6. Their jacuzzi on top was a surprise as well as the view on the way there.

7. You will feel closer to nature from white sand to different exotic trees to paradise view on our windows  to endangered birds in their vicinity.

For inquiries you may reach them thru the ff:
Address: Kaputian, Island Garden City of Samal, Davao del Norte, Philippines, 8120
Contact No.: +63 922 864 6814 | +63 920 966 7564 | +63 917 711 3868