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For Someone Who Keeps Waiting

We are living in an age where society places so much pressure on finding someone just before a certain age. To be in a relationship. Girls are raised with a belief that if they don’t end up finding someone before they hit 30s they will be doomed to remain alone reason so many people rush into relationship not to feel lonely. I know people at 16 who were already go out on a dates. 17, already committed in a romantic relationship. 19, got engaged.

For those solo people out there, you might have questions in your mind as:

When is the right time?

-What is the condition?

-What took him/her so long?

-Who could be that someone?

-Lord, can you make him/her be that someone for me?

But should we be really bothered? Company? Happy? Conformity? Security?

SOMEONE NEEDS TO HEAR THIS LOAD AND CLEAR:

You are not defined by your relationship status. Your worth is not measured by the jewelry (or luck thereof) on you ring finger. Your life does not start once there’s a vow, and a ceremony. Your purpose isn’t put on hold until you fall in love. You don’t need to attach your identity to someone else, you don’t have to depend on someone else for your happiness because truth is no one will ever be able to make you happy if you are not happy with yourself.

It is important to know your season. Respect it.

Is it a season to study?

Is it a season to level up your career?

Is it a season for your complete emotional healing?

Is it a season of formation?

If it’s not yet your season to pursue or be pursued, do not awaken love.

Song of Songs 8:4 NIV

“Do not arouse or awaken LOVE until it so desires.”

The message was mentioned trice in the book of Song of Solomon particularly:

Chapters 2:7, 3:5, 8:4

In the Bible if it’s repeatedly stated it means it’s important.

We sometimes tend to jump into relationships because we are somehow feel that we’re missing out on something or that we’re incomplete. Trust me, you are not; It just that we allow this world to give us burdens that make our lives more difficult. We become more wishful, we become more covetous.

Wanting the wrong thing at the wrong time with a wrong motive is covetousness.

Too many people rush into search for the hidden entity that is love. Therefore most of the times they tend to settle for people who are not worthy of them. Because many of us are so scared that if we don’t jump in on the bandwagon of love at the first opportunity, we will never get the chance to get on it again, and in doing so we make horrible mistakes and those mistakes leave scars that sometimes last a lifetime.

And mind you, not all people in a relationship are happy. Most of them hang on to abusive partners and unhappy relationships because they are so frightened of being alone. Because society judges single people. They are made to feel inadequate and damaged and like there is something wrong with them which is not true.

Being single is not that big a deal. Know that you are not alone. I know there are times you feel little bit ‘bitter’ and ‘envy’ at the same time but please just wait patiently.

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.”

-Ecclesiastes 3:11

Go and chase your dreams as you wait for him/her. Focus and thrive in your career. Be the person he/she will be proud to have.

I’m not saying that you need to be perfect. But at least you can say you’re in your ‘best version’ of yourself at the moment God revealed him/her to you. Keep hard trekking on your journey and wait patiently.

Don’t settle just because you want to feel wanted. Don’t settle because you’re afraid of growing old alone. Don’t settle because you may have found a “good person who puts you first.”

Wait for a person who doesn’t put you as his foundation. You should wait for a person who puts Christ first, seeks His Kingdom first, and because of His love and devotion to our Redeemer He loves us accordingly.

Wait for a person who is planted on our God, our rock– and together you find each other because both of you made the Lord your foundation.

Never enter in a relationship just because you only want to feel happy and be entertained (hindi yan entertainment. Wala kayong tv sa bahay?) or to experience what it’s like to have a partner…that’s so shallow. If that’s your sole reason to be in a relationship you better off stay single and wait until you grow as a person and be matured enough to handle things.

Love is not experimenting on boys and girls to arrive at a perfect relationship.

Love is not love when it comes at the wrong time.

“The wrong person at the right time is a wrong thing. The right person at the wrong time is still a wrong thing. It should be right person at the right time for love to be right.”

Love is never an interest.

Love is not synonymous to flirting .

Love is not sex outside marriage.

God is not joking when He forbid sex outside of marriage. Is not because He’s no fun. It’s because He loves you. He knows what sex outside of marriage will do to you. It’ll mess with your mind, body, spirit and emotions. It’ll make you miserable.

* You don’t want to miss out on the blessing of the wedding night.

– There’s something very special about a couple making love for the first time. They become one flesh. This exclusive experience of discovery and pleasure is only meant to happen within the intimacy of marriage. If we don’t wait, we miss out on a very special blessing from God.

If you refrain from doing it outside of marriage:

•You’ll be spiritually, physically, emotionally healthier.

If you continue to feed the fleshy desires, our spirit will grow weak and our relationship with God will be damaged.

God tells us to honor marriage and keep the marriage bed pure, He’s helping us avoid baggage carried into our sexual relationships.

**Just because some might think it’s unusual doesn’t mean it’s already a lie that you can’t be stay pure until you get married. And just because many done it already doesn’t mean everyone has done it, too.

Please ladies, don’t settle for less. Protect your purity. Remember, a man who knows how to control is a man who knows how to lead. And why settle for mediocre if you can have the best?

It doesn’t mean too that if you already done it, you’re bad. No.

Repentance is a key.

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.”

-1 John 1:9-10

Be an open book. Don’t hide your sins. Confess it to God. He restores us when we repent. He don’t care about your past, He just want you. He’s a God who runs to us when we return. When we decided to go back to God, He will meet us halfway. God’s forgiveness erases everything.

Also, just be reminded that every time you say something especial to someone, you take a part of that person’s heart and he/she will thinks that you have given to him/her a part of yourself. Then there will start a feelings—most unstable feelings.

They say follow your heart. But the Lord says, GUARD YOUR HEART.

You don’t need to hurry. Being a single person alone is a blessing, knowing that God has given us time to do everything to build up our personality and character. It doesn’t mean that if you’re single you’re vain, hopeless or there’s something wrong with you. No.

You, yourself must feel complete with your relationship with God before finding someone else to love. If you’re seeking the Lord, once your heart is aligned with His, if it be His will, I believe He will provide HIS BEST in HIS PERFECT TIMING. Our sweet Jesus is not malicious. He doesn’t withhold good things from you for fun. He will give you that someone to you in time. There’s always a reason, a season. Know your season and honor it.

There is no right way for you to find your forever other than God’s way… And trust me you don’t want it any other way.

Seek Him first. Love Him. Pour into your relationship with Him the way you long to pour into your future marriage.

Find a person who pushes you to notice Christ. Find a person who pushes you to put Christ first. Find a person who leads by example, and reminds you that Christ is ultimate the person you should be imitating.

So love yourself.

–Kim

Fat Fook Kitchen |Taste Of Taiwan

We normally go to SM North EDSA during weekend just to window shopping and hanging out to cool off.

We went here for lunch because I was craving for Dumplings. It happened that my friend and I pass by this fancy looking restaurant at the upper ground floor of SM North EDSA: Fat Fook Kitchen is a Taiwanese restaurant that serves street food and traditional dishes on their menu.

I haven’t been to Taiwan just yet, but Fat Fook made me experienced to devour its authentic dishes.

Before our orders arrived, I had the chance to fully observe the restaurant.

The interior of the place is intricately designed with turquoise and coral accent. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but the artificial warm lighting felt stimulating and calming to my eyes and its furniture is made from wood, giving an Asian ambiance to the diners. The place wasn’t much crowded.

Our Top Picks:

•Steamed Xiao Long Bao

Php138 / Php198

Our meal began with a basket of Steamed Xiao Long Bao

I love the perfect texture of the wrapper where it’s neither too thin nor was it too thick. Each bite coats your tongue with the rich tasty broth. But really it somehow tasted like Tinola!

It is never be complete without the soy-vinegar dip mixed with fresh ginger slices.

•Taiwanese Sausage

Php288/3 sticks

These grilled sausages are snappy and slightly sweet with thin fresh garlic inserted in between to add that contrast. But I wasn’t a fan of the garlic so I just removed them before eating.

•Fat Fook Chicken Chop

Php238

The restaurant’s signature dish and one that you should never leave out too. It was so flavorful and crunchy. The chicken is ultra tender and cooked to a soft perfection. It’s a boneless chicken fillet breaded and deep-fried, sliced into bite-sized strips. I can say that it is a comfort food perfected.

•Taiwan Style Fried Rice

Php258

I can’t live without rice during meals! That’s why I’m very happy to know they served rice, the Taiwan Styled Fried Rice.

The soft and fluffy rice are cooked with aromatic soy sauce and topped with meat and vegetables, egg and chorizo. Swear, I can eat this all by myself. Hahaha

It was absolutely delicious! I think the serving is good for 2-3 people.

•Wintermelon Tea

Php98

For washing down our meal we had wintermelon tea. It’s good not too sweet just the right flavor.

Ratings:  4.5/5

Fat Fook Kitchen gets a lot of the Taiwanese dishes right straight from the shores of our neighbor in a clean environment with good service and wide variety of luscious dishes. It felt like you were in Taiwan without splurging a lot of money. This is definitely a good place to go if you’re craving for legit Taiwanese food.

Can’t wait to come back!

Fat Fook Taiwanese Kitchen is located at the Upper Ground Floor City Center of SM North EDSA or check out their Facebook page: Fat Fook Kitchen

 

Under Northern Skies: Bolinao Or Never

Now comes the end of January. But I am going to leave this post here anyway as a form of remembrance for the closing month and for all the things that it will take away with it.

Thank you, January. You have been gentle and kind.

It would be a lie to say that I didn’t plan this trip because I did. As a water baby, I badly wanted to soaked my body in saltwater again. So, I carved my travel plans against the wall and told myself time and time again that I would never let January end without seeing the beach once more.

Here is a memory.

Exactly 2 weeks ago, with a group of friends that supported me with this plan, we went to Bolinao, Pangasinan. It’s one of the best beach destinations in Luzon that can be reached by land travel.

Bolinao was the sanctuary that we needed to relax and revitalize in from our bustling city lives. I remember the sudden burst of excitement I got when I first filled my lungs with the salty smell of the sea. It is part of my answer to the question “where I belong to” and if whether I am a Mountain person or a Beach person? Obviously, you already know it. Sea is like a good friend— almost a member of the family. So when I am with the water, I am no longer alone. That’s also why sea is able to inject meaningfulness to whatever place or activity that is connected to it. It is like a dear friend to me, anything connected with the sea is more meaningful for me.

How To Reached Bolinao

You can get to Bolinao via bus or by your own vehicle.

By Bus

There are three main bus service providers who organize trips to Bolinao, Pangasinan. They offer both day and night services.

•Victory Liner (Cubao Terminal) 

• FiveStar Bus Inc.( Pasay Terminal) 

• Dagupan Bus Line (Cubao Terminal) 

By Private Car

It is one of the best and convenient ways to reach Bolinao. As for us, we left around 9PM. From Quezon City we took Mindanao NLEX to Subic, Clark, and Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX) route; SCTEX going to TPLEX; TPLEX exit to Urdaneta; Urdaneta to Calasiao to San Carlos Road; San Carlos to Bugallon Road; Bugallon to Alaminos ‘til we reached to Bolinao.

It takes 5 to 6 hours to get there. If you are traveling by bus upon reaching Bolinao town proper, you would have to take a tricycle in order to reach your hotel or resort.

We arrived in the Bolinao town proper around 3AM.

Where To Stay

Birdland Beach Club

Photo Disclaimer: this is from the official Instagram account of @birdlandbeachclub

The place was nice and the staff are well- trained and courteous. They made sure we got everything we wanted.

The main attraction of this resort is the tranquility and being so close to nature.

For room rates & booking: Agoda.com

Getting Around Bolinao

Widely known in Bolinao is the city tour package via Tricycle ride, that is why make sure to secure your ride as it is the most convenient way to tour around the city. And if you have your own car it’s a great advantage. You can move easily around the town and some tourist spots.

When we reached the town we ended up having a heavy breakfast at Adoras. Some of the resorts have their own restaurants where you can order food. There are also “Paluto” restaurants in Patar White Beach where you can bring raw food and have them cooked your way. If you want more decent restaurants, you can find them in Bolinao town center.

We then proceeded to Bolinao Falls.

Bolinao Falls

There are about 3 different waterfalls in Bolinao, each site has something unique to offer however, it requires entrance fees on each.

We only visited Bolinao Falls, Entrance Fee is Php20.00 per person. It’s a well-maintained trail and a 10 minute hike. They say that the best is the Bolinao Falls 1 as it is the biggest.

Before going to Patar, we dropped by at the near Lighthouse.

Bolinao Lighthouse

You can climb all the way to the top of the lighthouse. This is only for free.

And we took the rest the whole day in Patar Beach.

This beach is famous for its creamy white, crystal clear water, and a breathtaking view of the West Philippine Sea. The sound of the waves was comforting like nothing in the world ever was, or ever will be. I was genuinely happy. Laughing my lungs out as swamp in the cold, pristine water and welcomed the coming of the crashing waves; Barefoot most of the time– walking on the golden brown sand. It’s peaceful space makes it relaxing and refreshing at the same time. As we watched the sunset the sun started to sink its face, red-edge glints in my eyes, the brightest spots on horizon. When I’d look back and reminisce this moment, I’m happy I’d been here. This trip was one of the best discovery I ever had. It was one of those rare moments in life because it was pure and genuine.

Tip:

•There’s no signal in patar beach, so it’s really a best chance to do social media detox

•If you’re going to pitch your tents, make sure you have lamps or flashlights with you as there are no lights provided in the camping area.

•They have 10 php fee per device if you need to charge your gadgets

-Kim

And That’s How You Let Go

It’s a brand new year! It’s a clean slate.

As we gracefully slide into the new chapter in our lives let’s remember to leave our excess baggage behind— Baggages that caged us from the walls created by not releasing the complexities of life.

Two weeks before Christmas I remember my cousin asked me if I do give second chances. Without hesitation I said yes. I’m a very patient person. I give plenty of second chances. I don’t know but that’s me, e. But there was a time it been tested. I remember when someone who are very close to me, a part of our family, broke my heart. The pain from that conflict almost killed me, and caused a big trauma in my life. As they say, the people who can hurt you most are the ones who are close to you. The feeling of betrayal, made up stories, being lied to— it wrecked my soul, my whole being as its casualty in the most vexatious way brought me to so much anger. Yet at the end of the day, I chose to give the purest love. And I must say, I have extended my forgiveness to her too even she didn’t ask my forgiveness.

I moved on.

However, there were days when I can’t help but still get affected when some insensitive people around me talked about what have happened in the past. Do you know that feeling when you’re trying to forget things but there were some people who would brought it up again like they were slapping it hard to your face? Plus the unsolicited reports by them. That’s it. The feeling of anger gradually showed up again and it got on my nerves as the peace in my heart slowly faded away.

I questioned myself, did I really forgive her? Why am I still affected? What does it take to really forgive? Should I talk to her then hug her and mag-iiyakan kami and release the words, “You are forgiven.” But there was also a side of me wanting to see her become miserable and let her feel all the excruciations and heartbreaks she’d gave to me. But I realized, oh my gosh Kim, what have you become? That’s not you. And yes, this is my heart issue that doesn’t have to do with her. I need to settle this in my heart, alone.

Nagpapatawad naman ako pero kase nakakapagod dahil paulit-ulit lang yung kasalanan. I extended my forgiveness but I still get affected every time I hears my sister do the same thing again.

I came to camp carrying all these baggages. I was met by God’s great love for me. I cried out all my heart. But 2 days of waiting was all it took to save me from drowning in the dark water and strip me of my pain and grudges. As I’m looking on the horizon the sky already burned with an orange glow and the sun started to sink behind the distant mountains. I caught myself saying, “I forgive you Ate.” And I meant it. God knows how I meant every word of it.

I understood that forgiveness is not a feeling, it is a choice. It’s a decision. Hindi yan yung pag nag yakapan kayo at nag goosebumps ay ma ri-release na rin ang pagpapatawad. Forgiveness is admitting that you have unsettled issues in your heart and you are deciding to let it go. Don’t wait to forgive someone until they apologise or even acknowledge they have harmed you. If you are waiting for someone to acknowledge they hurt you, you could be waiting forever and it puts them in the power position. Forgiveness is an act which frees us so it makes sense that we don’t have to wait for someone else to do something in order for us to take matters into our own hands and move on.You can exercise your freedom and forgive in the absence of an apology. Forgiveness is coming to Jesus and surrendering all the hurts, bad memories, traumas, fears and pains at the feet of His cross. Forgiveness is experiencing His grace and lastly forgiveness is forgetting the offense people throws at you. Truly when you forgive, you also forget.

From that moment on, I felt the power of forgiveness. Then I started to cry. When you release forgiveness, Jesus will erase all those bad memories in your mind, making you forget all those things. Just like how Jesus Christ forgives your sins.

“If you truly repented and asked for forgiveness, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

-1 John 1:9

And

“…and will remember their sins no more.”

-Isaiah 43:25, Hebrews 8:12

It allowed me to confront my self and my wounds, It asked me to surrender these wounds to Him for them to finally rest and heal.

Also, I don’t want to keep this bitterness, anger, trauma, and grudges in my heart. So, I chose to fully forgive and be free; I felt God’s love so who am I not to forgive?

“For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.”

-Matthew 6:14

I cannot remember any offense. I cannot remember the pain.

I know forgiving someone who has offended you is not easy. It’s the hardest thing to do.

But please have a desire to let go of anything that hinders you to grow, move forward and enjoy your God-given life.

I prayed that you could extend forgiveness who has offended and hurt you. (✿ ◔︣◡◔᷅)

–Kim

Why I Didn’t Fear Change?

After reading some blogmas articles, a special blogging tradition featuring Christmas-themed blog posts which usually run from the first of December up to Christmas Day, I also thought of trying it for myself. Unfortunately, with all the errands and deadlines I have in my schedule, I am pretty sure that writing a blog everyday may be impossible for me to accomplish.

However, while I’m sitting alone on the front porch watching the blinking Christmas lights from every single house it made me realized that this is exactly the point of this blog: to write and to share. So here I am—typing this blog—looking back to all lessons I’d learned and I count each of these memories and let everything come to pass.

Time flies so fast, front of me are the memories of everything that ever happened during all these year flashing by like an express train thundering through the busy station of consciousness.

It was only yesterday when I was only thinking about what I want to do or become; Only yesterday when I entered the university; only yesterday when I’m just this raketera girl to make ends meet; only yesterday when I rummaged sale of my own pre-loved clothes, perfumes and lotions; only yesterday when I offered tutoring in my neighborhood; only yesterday when I started to paint and quit; only yesterday when I started to write my hopefully first published book; only yesterday I worked as a travel agent.

I could see vividly in my memory all of these of how I didn’t fear change and taking risks.

Now I do traveling to different places and falling in love with them; Meet different types of people from different walks of life— it has led me to believe that life is all but a tangle of serendipitous encounters— I learned to dipped my souls into another for me to learn from them and to set aside my beliefs in order to understand that not everyone should think the same way I do. It makes me see the bigger picture.

I have had so many different hobbies. Most of them being creative things. I’m glad I explored all these different things. I didn’t let my self to stuck in box but rather I challenged myself and get out from my comfort zone. I don’t want to live a life full of regrets.

Indeed, time and experience changes people. We are constantly in a state of movement, of dynamic change. And I know something has changed within me, something is not the same— maybe I have changed in some ways. But it’s probably just because I finally started living life my way. I may speak differently now (lol not really, I’m just comfortable speaking in taglish now without being made fun of or called a show off), I may dress differently (it’s really just because retro is in right now and I have a lot of hand-me-downs that I love to wear), I may act differently (yeah, the eye-opening part of “independent” living somewhat changed my views on life).

But my real friends know that I’m still me. I’m still music eclectic, still a huge film geek, my humor is still suck hahahaha, I still love to read books, I’m still pretty laid back, I’m still that friend you can call at 2am, I’m still an in denial hopeless romantic, and I still get lost in my daydreams.

Society tells us we need to specialize in something but no. Don’t let other people’s opinion dictate how you live your life and for who you will gonna be. Whatever makes you happy (of course as long as it didn’t harm you and everyone around you) is worth fighting for and take risk or you just let it pass by.

Don’t be afraid to try everything that seems interesting. Be passionate and be fearless.

You will never get stuck in just one situation you’ll eventually move forward, if you allow it to.

It’s okay if your dreams change along the way. You still explored them. And when battles come, when mountains arise, when hard times happen, PLEASE DO NOT ESCAPE. CHOOSE TO ENDURE, ALWAYS. AND TRUST GOD.

Yes, you will be knocked down. You’ll get tired, you’ll cry a lot. You will not be okay. You will hurt. Life will disappoint but don’t feel regretful, but proud that you tried what others only talk about. It’s okay if you end up doing something completely different. As long as you’re happy in what you’re doing is already enough. You will come to the end of yourself. But you will grow. And you will learn, and you will overcome all these painful processes and you’ll see yourself nth times stronger and better than who you used to be before.

So please, do not escape hard times. Do not invalidate your struggles. Do not be afraid to fail. Make your failures your footstool. Do not take shortcuts to success. For in the shortcuts, you might miss wonderful things, people and experiences He has placed in the way for you. The becoming is always more important than the being.

Choose the narrow road. Choose the waiting, the tedious, messy process.

CHOOSE TO ENDURE, ALWAYS. After all, He already won it all.

Wherever you are, GOD WILL MEET YOU THERE. Jesus died for you, what else He cannot give you?

Also, please be reminded that it’s okay to mess up. It’s okay not to get it right away. It’s okay to take longer time in learning than everybody else. Take your time. Respect your progress. Trust the process. Don’t ever compare yourself to other people. Comparison Is A Thief Of Joy. We’re all on our own paths; therefore, the most important person you need to focus on is you!

You can always go after that dream. You can find the career path you wanted to truly take.

It’s not too late.

Believe me when I say that the same God who delivered you for years will also deliver you for the years to come. Faithful He has been, faithful He will be.

And I promise you:

“When you truly seek first His kingdom & His righteousness, all things will be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)

-Kim✨

Christmas In A Nutshell

2018 was my breathing space. It was a year of discovering life and learning new things and experiences. But I have to say, it wasn’t an easy year. It has definitely been a rollercoaster of emotions, filled with countless tremendous assault. But I made it through, and here I am still.

There are indeed a lot of things that left us with a great realisations. But there are still always things to be grateful for.

>> I learned that all feelings are valid. But not all the things I’ve felt are true. They are valid, but not always true.

>> There were times I’ve felt like a failure; but that truth is, I am in a process of learning. Sometimes I’ve felt like I’m neglected; but I cannot discount the people that have stayed with me.

>> Our experiences affect us and the people around us differently. Our culture, beliefs and past all play a part. One could weigh more to the other. Similarities in our situations doesn’t mean the same gravity in effect. And that’s okay.

>> Love yourself.

>> I am nothing apart my God and if He can do miracles in my life, nothing’s stopping Him from doing the same in yours.

>> Prayers admits humility.

God is still working on me. I have learned to be grateful, even if nothing’s going right.

I have learned that I no longer have to prove anything, for He already made me worthy. I learned to live beyond my feelings and to trust Him more than I trust my feelings. His ways are higher than my ways, and His plans are better than my plans. I have learned that when life took away all that I have, as long as I have God, I lack nothing.

However, when someone will ask me what I want for Christmas… I honestly don’t know. I don’t look anymore for any kind of material gratification. Well, when I received something I’ll be glad and thankful still! When I was a child I always beyond excited to see the gifts I’ll receive: Barbie dolls, video games cds, story books, and dresses. As an adult, I find myself wanting abstract ideal beyond measure.

When party’s are everywhere; the smell of cheap champagne slowly seeping into the perfect curve of crystal glasses; hearing joyful songs of Christmas carol; the roaring laughter echoed in the room beating into heart like a familiar melody. And being surrounded by the people I love. This is what I truly want. That’s priceless.

Last weekend I went to Tagaytay and there I found a moment of clarity; Seems like my heart has found its home.

To be filled with loving-kindness; going to be a peaceful and at ease.

What I truly want to do is to quit this city life, pack my bags, have a house along the Cordillera mountains where I can wake up to the smell of morning mist. And to be with a dog: maybe a corgi or a beagle. I think I’m okay with being a dog lady. Lol.

Or perhaps to live near the beach. Waking up to a mostly sunny weather, barefoot most of the time— walking on the sand , feeling the clear blue water rush on the top of my feet.

It’s about all the wonderful things that might happen that makes life worth living, if only we’d let them.

-Kim✨

Exploring Ilocos 2018 | Part 2

To celebrate the Thanksgiving (though here in the Philippines we didn’t celebrate it that much) we went to Ilocos.

It’s my second time to be here but the excitement and the vibes are still the same. My adventure to the northern tip of the Philippines was one of the unforgettable trips this year. As always Ilocos did not disappoint— it will leave you breathless and make your heart flutter with its beauty.

LET THE ADVENTURE BEGIN!

There are two way to get to Ilocos:

•By Plane:

Take a direct flight from Manila to Laoag via Cebu Pacific or Philippine Airlines. Laoag International Airport is the only airport in Ilocos Norte. Travel time is about an hour.

How To Get Out Of Laoag Airport To The City Proper:

From the airport, you may hire a tricycle to take you to the city proper or take a jeepney that brings passengers from the airport terminal to the city proper. Fare is PHP60.

•By Bus:

You can catch a Partas and Florida Bus from travel between Cubao (Manila) and Laoag (Ilocos Norte) and Manila and Vigan (Ilocos Sur). So from their terminal in Cubao the bus fare is PHP797 for First Class and PHP965 for Deluxe. Travel time is roughly 10-12 hours so brace your ass!

Getting Around Ilocos

If you are doing a DIY tour of Ilocos Norte just hire a tricycle to tour you around Batac, the stronghold of the Marcoses. You’ll visit the Marcos Presidential Center (PHP50 entrance fee), the World Peace Center, the Aglipay Shrine, the General Ricarte National Shrine, and the Batac Church.

You can also do the same if you are planning to tour around Paoay. From Laoag town proper, you can rent a tricycle for about PHP250 (good for 4 persons) to take you to Paoay and its attractions (Paoay Church, Paoay Sand Dunes, Malacanang of the North and Paoay Lake).

For Pagudpud tour, you can ride a bus but swear, the waiting for the bus will just eat up your time. That was what happened to me in my first trip here. I feel like I’ve wasted my time waiting. So I suggested to take a tricycle again. It costly PHP600.

Just do the same for the south tour (Burgos are). See, tricycle tour is the best way to explore the tourist attractions. Haha. If you have a car much better. Less hassle.

Where to stay:

It has a lot of hotels to offer accommodation from luxury rooms to cheap.

We stayed at Palacio de Laoag Hotel which we booked online. It was a cozy room including breakfast buffet.

To check room rates click here: Hotel In Laoag

What we did was, we drove to Batac. We Visited the Marcos Presidential Center and Mausoleum. To be honest, I am unhappy with the photos that I got. Anyway, after a while of dilly dallying, I thought that it’s still worth sharing.

Let me tell you a few things about the places in Ilocos.

Ilocos Norte is known as a northern tourist destination, where one can find upper class hotels and beach resorts famous among expatriates and locals seeking for a quiet place to travel. It is a province rich not only in its attractions but also the people here are so hospitable. And the place is known for its delicacies

The museum will tell you more about the Great Dictator and how he grew as a politician and a leader. I took some photos inside and outside of the museum.

We headed out of Batac and stopped in another UNESCO World Heritage Site of Paoay Church. Built on 1710, the church still is still picturesque. It has distinct architecture and enormous facade no wonder It’s been a favourite tourist hotspot in the North.

               Kaway sa Paoay.

The Cape Bojeador Lighthouse, also known as Burgos Lighthouse

The Cape Bojeador Lighthouse is a cultural heritage structure located in Burgos, Ilocos Norte, that was established during the Spanish Colonial period in the Philippines.

We thought that the lighthouse was just few steps from the parking lot but we still needed to walk uphill for over 100 meters just to reach the lighthouse.

Bangui Wind Farm

This place is famous for its windmills. The Windmills are perfectly placed in the beach of Bangui Bay facing the West Philippine Sea.

This wind farm will help you appreciate how it is structured, its hidden history and its purpose. The wind farm uses 20 units of 70 meter (230 ft.) high Wind Systems all lined along the nine kilometer-shoreline of the place that aim to reduce the greenhouse gases that cause global warming. Swimming in the beach is not advisable unless you want to be eaten by huge waves rushing onto the shoreline.

The City Of Vigan

Before we ended our trip, we went to Vigan, the capital city of Ilocos Sur to see its famous old cobbled street with colonial houses and street lamps lined up on both sides, illuminates – transforming into a dreamlike setting in the 16th century.

Among the amazing places we visited Calle Crisologo – Vigan’s most popular tourist attraction is my favourite. This is I have always wanted to visit. This UNESCO World Heritage site indeed has its solitary charm. From its heritage houses to mouthwatering Ilocano staples such as Empanada and Bagnet are just all awesome! Walking along the famous Calle Crisologo during the golden hour is just amazing.

We also ate empanadas while exploring the city! Aside from buying souvenirs, we tried an avocado-flavored ‘dirty’ ice cream at Calle Crisologo. We really did enjoyed this place!

But I think the highlight of the night is when we decided to stop taking a snap photo and just enjoy the moment instead. Watching people passing by. Looking at their expression turn from blue to green to bright yellow as we sat on the curb under the heat of those orange street lights, felt so calm. Talked about everything and nothing— we were laughing on the floor trying not to die. Certain places in the city never catch my attention and make an impact. But from this point forward, I don’t think I can ever think about these cobbled streets, these street lights, these point of encounter, without ever remembering that smile. Smile that transfixed me. Beguiling, the perfect phantasm to distract from the delusions that spewed from between those bright teeth…

I took a trip down memory lane.

So there, If you’re looking for some serious roadtrip, Ilocos is the best place to visit. History, nature, adventure, name it! you’ll surely find it here.