Monday, February 27, 2012

40 awesome things to do according to Anton Diaz

Plan, if you want to start the year right. Someone once said that if you want to have the best well-budgeted trip, you have to at least plan a a year before. I completely agree with this person, if you manage to plan early you can purchase things at a deal price like hotels, tours, and the like. This someone is actually very well known in the blogging world, his name is Anton Diaz. He is the one behind the genius of OurAwesomePlanet. His vision is to bring people to experience the best things in the Philippines. During in one of our company assemblies, he was invited as a speaker to talk about the top 40 things he recommends to do in the Philippines. This is a good starting point for those people who are building up their bucket list. (like me) :)
1. Sinulog Festival - largest and longest festival in the Philippines
2. Dancing on the boat in the sinulog festival - this is different from the religious version
3. Dinagyang festival - they have cool parades and performances, saw in video the one with the eagle and her eggs. It was awesome! FIlipino creativity.
4. Hot air balloon festival - this is done annually in the fields of Pampanga. Usually swarmed by photographers and enthusiasts. I learned a fun fact about this festival, it was actually started to attract tourists after the Mt. Pinatubo explosion.
5. Pahiyas festival - every may 15 of the year. The highlight of this festival are the decorated houses. There is a deal in ensogo that covers the transportation from/to manila only from PHP1600. I'm thinking of going this year. :)
6. Maskara Festival - every 3rd week of October. Another colorful and full of smiles festival. This was made to cheer up people during the depressed times when harvest was poor.
7. Giant parol festival - held in Pampanga every december. Competition who has the biggest parol.
8. Pyromusical - held every Feb in the Mall of Asia.
9. Boracay - best well known tourist filled beach getaway
10. Caramoan Island - if you want to try provincial food, you should definitely try the beach feast in caramoan.
11. el nido - beautiful shores.
12. batayan & malakasus
13. kayangan lake - found in coron. Biggest lake. Really breathtaking.
14. Calaguas
15. Coron - a 'virgin' boracay
16. San Vicente beach - it has a 14km beach. Ideal for long walks and runs.
17. The black island in Palawan.
18. Balesin
19. Mt Pinatubo - you can hike, usually deal sites have tours available.
20. Taal volcano - you can also hike uphill. Read my blog to find out my experience.
21. Butanding in Oslob or Donsol - There is closer encounter in Oslob since the Butandings have been domesticated by the local fishermen.
22. Banaue Rice Terraces -the whole rice field was designed to face the sunrise.
23. Tapiya Falls - swim close
24. El Nido - do kayaking
25. Mt Apo - zip line. that was created by Camp Sabros. The great thing about this is due to the structure of Mt. Apo, you get the best scenes.
26. Corregidor - This place is such a cultural place to try out authentic spanish/ filipino cuisine. Its recommended to do an overnight and do ghost hunting in Malinta tunnel.
27. Surfing in Surigao and Baler
28. Chocolate Hills viewing by riding an ATV.
29. Mapasa river trek- waterfall jump Cdo
30. Immersing on Batanes - Though the airfare here is quite expensive, if you want to experience real experiences like a true should go here. Best time to go is from march to may. they have the best boutique hotels.
31. Underground river in Palawan - one of the world's wonders.
32. white water rafting in kalinga river or Cdo
33. Swinging in the canyon in Danao, Bohol. This one works like a pendulum.
34. Food trip in Vigan and Laoag
35. Breakfast in Cebu
36. Isla Naburot - best Filipino meal
37. Claude Tayag - 5 ways lechon. A private dining in Pampanga. It is well known for serving up real authentic Filipino food.
38. best in halo halo can be found in Bicol Tiwi Albay.
39. Ka Lui restaurant in Puerto Princesa. Best Filipino restaurant.
40. Breakthrough, Iloilo - they are known for their fresh seafood meals.
41. Iligan is known for their best Filipino picnic meal.

But the best lesson to carry with you is that regardless of how beautiful or amazing your destination might be, it will be pointless if you are not with the people you want to share the experience with. So live. love. travel.