Weekend in Paradise – Perth Paradise Resort in Sipalay

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Six hours away from Bacolod City lays a beautiful gem of Negros Occidental. The travel from the city of smiles to Perth Paradise Resort will be lengthy with towns and towns of sugarcane plantations in between. A far-flung town, Sipalay has its own unique beauty to offer. I am not really a beach bum, so for our term break, my friend and I decided to travel for the long weekend and stay at Perth. (There are many other attractions in Sipalay like the sugar beach, the caves, islets but of course, we opted for the mountain resort.)

Coming from Iloilo City, of course, Bacolod City will be our entry point.

HOW TO GET TO PERTH PARADISE RESORT FROM ILOILO CITY

From Iloilo City, head to the Fastcraft terminal at Lapuz, Iloilo City. Here’s what you have to prepare:

  1. Tricycle/taxi fare + terminal entrance fee (P 12.00)
  2. Weesam Express fare (roundtrip) P 380.00

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When you arrive at Bacolod port, find a jeepney with the route Alijis. There are a couple of jeepneys and tricycles that wait for ferry passengers there, so you do not need to commute again from SM City to the terminal. (Be sure to confirm with the driver). They charge P20.00 per person.Tell the driver to drop you off Ceres South Terminal at Lopez- Jaena Street. It takes about 15 to 20 minutes, but if you are in doubt, ask the locals. In our case, screen shots from google maps had been handy (we thankfully weren’t lost in the city).

Be mindful that there are no direct buses going to Sipalay, so take the one with the route Hinoba-an. The six-hour trip (due to the unlimited stops of the non-aircon bus) will let you see the sugarcane plantations of Bago City, Hinigiran, Binalbagan, Himamaylan, Ilog and Cuayan.

Here’s what you have to prepare:

  1. Bus fare (aircon) P 238.00 (non-aircon) P 210.00
  2.  food, camera or mp3 player to accompany you during the long ride (or you can sleep – this doesn’t work for me when I am commuting, though).

Along the way.. here are some sights to expect: 

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And just when you are nearing exhaustion…. tadaaaaaaa! You will be in Sipalay. That doesn’t end there, though. 🙂

Get off at the Ceres terminal in Sipalay. There is a tricycle parking area next to the bus stop, so you can ask one of those guys to bring you to Perth. They charge P100.00 for each passenger, one way. Since Perth is in a secluded area, be sure to get the contact number of the driver so he can pick you up from the resort whenever you are ready to go.

Good news: The drivers do not charge an extra fee for this.

The resort usually contacts the guests so they can arrange for the pick-up by their own tricycle for the same amount. However, you will have to get off before the terminal.

Expect a ride on the 3-kilometer paved and 1-kilometer rough road.

ARRIVING AT THE RESORT

Arriving at Perth Mountain Resort, here is what you can see:

The entrance (reception/ dining area) 

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Dining area

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The view from the dining area of Perth Paradise Resort is great. It was raining when we arrived, so this can be more beautiful on a sunny day.

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Since we are staying overnight, the resort did not charge us with the entrance and swimming pool fee. But for your reference, here are the rates:

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Departing from Bacolod Ceres South Terminal at 10:00 AM, we arrived in Perth Paradise just before 5 PM. It was a rainy day and my friend and I were really hungry. They have their own restaurant that serves delicious meal at such a fair price.

It takes a while for the food to be ready. The servings of the dishes is good for 2 to 3 people, so, it is quite affordable though we would have loved it better if they have the more practical combo meals. We ended up bringing our excess food to our room upstairs..

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THE ACCOMMODATION

Cabana Rooms

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Located just behind the reception/dining area, the cabana rooms are placed strategically for the guests to have a good view of the lagoon. Designed  to fulfill the bahay kubo feel, it is made of nipa and bamboo. It also has a small balcony.

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What’s inside… 

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ROOM INFORMATION: 

  • 2 single mattress on the floor
  • Good for 2 persons (max: 3 persons – 200 for additional person)
  • Electric fan  
  • Common toilet and bathroom
  • P1000.00 (off season) or P1200.00 (peak season)

View from the Cabanas

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There are three cabanas at Perth Paradise Resort. Perhaps, this is because the land area is small. The other rooms are found up the hill and the only way up and down is the plight of stairs. (My friend and I had a hard time going up to our room after dinner.)

These stairs lead you to the infinity pool with Perth Paradise Resort’s trademark view. It is in the same area where the bar and the standard rooms are located.

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These day huts by the stairs can be rented at P500.00

Standard Rooms

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Located right in front of the infinity pool, staying here offers the unobstructed view of the islets.

A peak inside the room (sorry for bags, we were really tired but excited)

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ROOM INFORMATION:

  • 2 Single beds / matrimonial bed and a single bed
  • Good for 2, but can accommodate up to 4 persons (they charge additional P200 for extra guest and P200 for the mattress)
  • With TV and air-conditioner
  • Free breakfast for 2 persons
  • P2,000.00 (low season) or P 2, 500.00 (peak season)

View from the Standard Rooms

Early the next day, we opened our window and saw this…

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Perth Paradise Resort also has a family room (check with the resort for the specific rate)

INFORMATION:

  • 2 matrimonial beds+ 2 extra beds
  • Can accommodate up to 6 persons
  • With TV, air conditioner, and kitchen
  • Free breakfast for 2 persons
  • P 4,500.00 (peak season) or P 4,000.00 (low season)

Magnificent View of  the Islets from Perth Paradise Resort

There is also a bar at the resort (by the poolside) managed by a nice and hospitable couple.

We wanted to go boating and island hopping but the weather was not so pleasant.  The water wasn’t as nice, too. So, we opted to swim and get soaked in the pool the whole morning.

On our way back to Bacolod City, we opted for the air-conditioned bus and was back in the city after about 5 hours (shorter than the way to Sipalay).

Perth Paradise Resort rates indicated here aren’t official. They are subject to change and for a more enjoyable trip, you are advised to call the resort for information. Call or text 09460590076.

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Around Sagada, Mt. Province

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“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity.” ― John Muir

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For the last post of the 7-day Nature Photo Challenge, I am definitely saving the best for last. I didn’t even know I could step here sooner than I originally intended to. First, I was planning to to come here with the love of my life, but it seemed to have given me the opportunity when we are away from each other. There is always the next time, right?

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Called the “Shangri-la of the Philippines”, the town of Sagada in the Mt. Province is full of wonders. It has something so uniquely explainable that made me fall in love with almost anything here. The serenity, scenery, people, and culture are just the obvious reasons, as it’s rusty idyllic atmosphere is something worth the travel.

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Famous for its hanging coffins, something considered to be the most iconic attraction around this area of Northern Luzon. Being buried in this hanging coffins require the price on an untarnished honor when one was still living. This is something not for everyone, right? If not raised high on the cliffs, one is buried in a cave.

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This is also the place where one could literally experience the meeting of the elements of nature city dwellers can only dream of. The clouds, the misty weather and the smell of the fresh scents from trees are a fulfillment! Walking under the shades of the trees are too priceless to miss.

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Of course, how can I forget to mention Sagada’s most popular “must experience” scene. An early morning drive or hike to Kiltepan’s Viewpoint to see the mighty sun emerge from the sea of clouds is magical! For me this is literally being “close enough to heaven”.  sagada14

Yep, the clouds are just so beautiful wherever you look around in Sagada. ❤

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Here are the other sights to behold in this beautiful place! I can’t wait to be back here! ❤

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This is the last of seven posts in response to Christina of JustBlueDutch’s 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge Series.She blogs about a multitude of topics about her personal interests being a parent, traveler and a Pinay expat. It is always a pleasure exchanging thoughts with her.

The rule for 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge is simple. Just post your favorite nature photo and nominate another blogger every day, for 7 days. :)

For my Day 7 of this 7-Day Series, I nominate Mitch of prinsesangwalangkorona. A fellow English major and linguistic addict, she blogs about language and a multitude of topics o her blog. I wish she updates this sooner. 🙂  If you are interested to know more, you can head to her blog. :)

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Thanks for dropping by!

Glimpse of Mt. Madia-as

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Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books. – John Lubbock

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When Chris and I were spending our post-Christmas holiday in Culasi with some friends, he was so delighted to be able to hang out by the very beautiful beach of Malalison island in Culasi. Yep, he swam all day long, literally. Other than the beach,  what he really admired was the magnificent view of the highest point in Panay Island! He said it very well reminded him of Switzerland and that this is one of his favorite places to be!

Perhaps, when one is looking to fulfill the line, “where the mountains meet the sea”, they better go to Antique. Mt. Madia-as (alternately spelled as Mt. Madjaas or Madya-as), it is the highest point in Panay Island, standing tall at 2, 113 meters.

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It is known as the Home of the Visayan Deities and has been considered by many locals as a mystical one. Gifted with open slopes,mossy forest and waterfalls, this is considered as a major mountain to climb. With this, it has a relatively unexplored peak.

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With the summit scaled at 2,117 m above sea level, it is almost always shrouded with clouds.This can be seen, if one is lucky enough, during days of clear weather or on late afternoons. Its beauty can be adored clearly when one is standing on the shore of Malalison Island or when on the boat crossing to mainland Culasi.

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The vegetation of this mountain is kept alive by the waterfalls around its base. Climbers have to expect heavy rains that fall at any given time. Perhaps this is why it is rich in fauna and flora.

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To see all the mighty mountain has to offer, one should endure a 15-kilometer road of stony way that lead to the river bed. There is also an improvised wooden bridge and hills that are full of hurdles everyone must tightrope walk by the sea of clouds. Many climbers attest to climbing to an almost vertical slope while having only the rocks, grasses and roots of trees to hold on to.

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Madia-as provides a marvelous mountain scenery with its peak almost always covered with thick clouds that seem to magnify its mystical beauty.

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This is the sixth of seven posts in response to Christina of JustBlueDutch’s 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge Series.She blogs about a multitude of topics about her personal interests being a parent, traveler and a Pinay expat. It is always a pleasure exchanging thoughts with her.

The rule for 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge is simple. Just post your favorite nature photo and nominate another blogger every day, for 7 days. :)

For my Day 6 of this 7-Day Series, I nominate adventuredawgs.wordpress.com. If you are interested to know about the joys of travelling with man’s bestfriend, you can head to this blog. :)

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Thanks for dropping by!

Sights En Route to Mt. Province

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“You never climb the same mountain twice, not even in memory. Memory rebuilds the mountain, changes the weather, retells the jokes, remakes all the moves.”  Lito Tejada-Flores

From the middle of the archipelago where the great white sand beaches abound, let’s go farther north. Going to a relatively small but famous town of Sagada in the Mt.Province.

Even before Chris and I became a couple (officially), it was always one of my plans to get to this specific place in the Cordilleras in Luzon. Oh well, if you can dream it…of course you can do it (and not even a Deutsch can stop me haha).

I live in a coastal city that’s literally just an inch above sea level, so.. well, this is something really exciting for me! But, it wasn’t as easy!

From Iloilo City, a 45-minute flight to Manila was the first step. And, oh, have I already mentioned a 3-hour delay of our flight? Anyway, so instead of going straight to Mt.Pinatubo, we were forced to stay in Manila for a day. (Not a very bad thing though.)

From Manila, we had to travel six hours by bus to Baguio City. To make it less painful (on the butt), we decided to make a stop over in Tarlac for a night. A well-deserved rest was great and of course, four hours left to get to the City of Pines then! Mandatory stroll around Baguio for a day again. 🙂

Until it was time to leave for Sagada. It was 2 weeks after the strong typhoon and the news of landslides in the Mt. Province had been on TV. Chris was worried about the risk we are taking. We talked about Halsema Highway and his desire to see Apo Wang-ud some weeks back  (coz he was considering getting a tattoo, an idea which I resist every day haha) and he knew it was a risky trip.

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We flew anyway. Quite wary though, we had to get some information from our hotel. Seemed like we wanted to just cancel the plan, until we get to Dangwa Station and talked to one of the bus operators to Sagada.

So off we go.

As the bus ascends, we don’t know what to expect. It would be a 6-hour ride up the Cordilleras. But behold! The view up there is magnificent!

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One couldn’t help but admire the stunning contrasts of the elements of nature.

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At one point, the reminders of the storm that had passed are still clear against the splendid background that makes one dreamy (and forget about how high on the mountain they are at the moment).

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On one side, the trees that stood strong serve as frames for such a graceful mountain side over 7,000 ft above sea level. 🙂

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The indication of the civilization in this remote area is admirable. The beautiful view of the mountain range is like a painting made realistic by the charming small villages and the vegetable farms they keep on the carved mountain sides.

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Truly, the most beautiful sides of nature lie far beyond where the keep-safes are dwelling.

When was the last time you took a trip to a place people say you shouldn’t? 🙂

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This is the fifth of seven posts in response to Christina of JustBlueDutch’s 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge Series.She blogs about a multitude of topics about her personal interests being a parent, traveler and a Pinay expat. It is always a pleasure exchanging thoughts with her.

The rule for 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge is simple. Just post your favorite nature photo and nominate another blogger every day, for 7 days. :)

For my Day 5 of this 7-Day Series, I nominate the1itinerary.com. If you are interested to know about travel experiences, you can head to this blog. :)

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Thanks for dropping by!

Islets Around Gigantes, Carles, Iloilo

isletsI feel we are all islands – in a common sea.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Crystal blue water, white sand beach, rocks on the sea, and a lot of sumptuous meals of scallops is a good combination this island can offer.  Yep, in my previous post about nature, I wrote about Cabugao Gamay island but I realized there are a lot to write about Isla Gigantes. I decided to write something more general to feature some spots I may as well choose to drop for the sake of limiting the post. 🙂

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As I have mentioned, the place is sooooooooooo beautiful but it comes with a price as it’s not very easy to get there. This is the next place to be for Chris and me. 🙂

Here are some other spots we’ve been to:

  1. Tangke Saltwater Lagoon. Hidden behind the cliffs of Gigantes Sur (the one on the first picture), its refreshing water can go really shallow during summer months but you will surely be surrounded by beautiful rock formations. When inside, you could actually hear the sound of water gushing in from the outside (you know what this means, right?). g1g8g7g6g5g3g2
  2. Bantigue Sandbar.  The remarkable white sand visible from afar excites one’s soul. Running through the beach on both sides, it is shaped like letter C and is so fine. There are just a few houses in this island perhaps because some parts of this go underwater on high tides. g12g13g14b1b3ba
  3. Antonia Beach. This place offers a very place for swimming and snorkeling. A favorite lunch stop for island hoppers, the fine white sand beach lie in between two limestone hills. g20g21g22g23g24
  4. All those rocks by the sea. Sharing this trait with Palawan, one can’t help but behold how beautiful the rock formations are around Isla Gigantes. g9g10g25g26g27g29g30g31g32

There are some more places to explore in Gigantes, but I will have to see it myself first before listing them down here. 🙂

Believed to have been home to ancient giants (legends), this group of islands is no doubt mystically beautiful.

Hey, where have you been lately?

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This is the fourth of seven posts in response to Christina of JustBlueDutch’s 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge Series.She blogs about a multitude of topics about her personal interests being a parent, traveler and a Pinay expat. It is always a pleasure exchanging thoughts with her.

The rule for 7-Day Nature Photo Challenge is simple. Just post your favorite nature photo and nominate another blogger every day, for 7 days. 🙂

For my Day 4 of this 7-Day Series, I nominate Jonin Marie of joninmariegargoles.wordpress.com. If you are interested to know the experiences of a young and beautiful  Pinay wanderer with an eye for photography, drop by her blog. Her adventures make me wanna go places quite soon. 🙂