Tag Archives: Cebu

Skydive and Watch the White Beach from the Sky (Bantayan, Cebu): Photo of the Day

The beaches of the Philippines are among the best in the world. As we’ve noted before, Philippine beaches come in different colors (with same clear waters, though), but it seems the most popular among tourists, both local and foreigners, are the white-sand beaches of these islands. Now, in addition to enjoying the beaches on the ground, what if we tell you that you can watch these white-sand beaches while dropping from the sky? Yes, skydiving has grown popular in Sta. Fe, Bantayan, Cebu, with Skydive Cebu Adventures providing the services. It looks awesome, as we see in this cool photo from Naël Henri Prélaz. There’s no doubt the parachute jump involves a lot of adrenaline rush (and screaming for newbies, who will be paired and inseparably strapped with an experienced skydiver, called a tandem dive), but we’re not doing it. Nope, not for us. It will be a waste of money because we’ll most likely pass out or, worse, have a heart attack. We wouldn’t back out from this extreme sport if were younger (well, maybe yes), but we know a lot of adrenaline junkies will happily jump off from a plane at 10,000 above Bantayan Island. You game to see some islands (uhm, while falling from the sky)? Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading Skydive and Watch the White Beach from the Sky (Bantayan, Cebu): Photo of the Day

The Flying Banca of Virgin Island, Cebu: Photo of the Day

There’s something strange happening in the Virgin Island, known as Sillion Island among the locals, located in the northern part of Cebu province and sandwiched between the islands of Bantayan and Daanbantayan. Boats or bancas in the Virgin Island appear to be flying on top of the white-sand beach. If you look closer, however, you’ll notice that the waters around island are simply crystal clear, giving the fun illusion that boats are flying. As noted by The Island Boy in the caption of his photo featured here, “yes, that’s a floating boat” (check his Instagram acount, @theislandboyy, for more awesome photos). Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading The Flying Banca of Virgin Island, Cebu: Photo of the Day

Get into the Spirit of Ati-Atihan, Aklan: Photo of the Day

There are at least two well-known, and well-loved, annual festivals in the Philippines to honor the Santo Niño (Infant Jesus) — the Sinulog of Cebu and the Ati-Atihan of Kalibo, Aklan. The name of the latter festival means “to be like the Atis or Aetas,” a group of Filipinos who were the primary settlers of the islands. Atis or Aetas have black skin, so it’s common for Ati-Atihan participants and performers to color their skin black and wear tribal costumes, as shown in this photo by Atch (check his Instagram acount, @atch.dreams, for more awesome photos). Aklan’s Ati-Atihan, of course, is the festival that inspired other mardi gras, including the Sinulog. Tourists / visitors must wait for at least one year to watch both festivals, as they are simultaneously scheduled every third Sunday of January. Which festival to watch first? That’s a good problem to have. Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading Get into the Spirit of Ati-Atihan, Aklan: Photo of the Day

Tribu Sinanduloy Reyna Juana, Sinulog 2017: Photo of the Day

There’s no Sinulog celebration without a lovely woman carrying the Sto. Niño, gracefully dancing to the beat of the drums. We’ve explained the significance of this festival character in a previous post, but we’ll summarize it again here. She is Reyna Juana or Queen Juana, the wife of Raja Humabon. They were the first Catholic converts when Ferdinand Magellan came to these islands, later named the Philippines. The story goes that Queen Juana was overwhelmed when presented with the Sto. Niño and she began dancing carrying the image. Her subjects followed suit, a practice we now still commemorate in the annual Sinulog festival. Here’s a lovely photo of the Reyna Juana of Tribu Sinanduloy-Tangub City (photo courtesy of Roel Clenuar, a traveler and wedding / portrait photographer; check his Instagram acount, @welics, for more awesome photos). Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading Tribu Sinanduloy Reyna Juana, Sinulog 2017: Photo of the Day

Chasing the Kawasan Waterfalls (Badian, Cebu): Photo of the Day

Don’t go chasing waterfalls, goes a popular song. But you really don’t have to chase waterfalls — you simply jump from one. Around three hours south of Cebu City is the three-tiered Kawasan Falls, with its clear spring water forming part of the Matutinao River System. It’s found in Barangay Matutinao, municipality of Badian. Foreign and Filipino tourists love this ecotourism destination. One recent guest of the Philippines, the British visitor Lydia Garner (check her Instagram acount, @lydiagxx), lost no time testing her nerves by jumping off Kawasan Falls. See her photo below. By the way, expect a full trip when visiting Kawasan Falls. Beyond enjoying the waterfalls, another popular activity in this area is canyoneering upstream of the Kawasan Falls. The Osmeña Peak in the Badian Mountain Range, a popular trekking destination, is located nearby. Pescador Island, with its corals and marine life for divers, is found in the nearby town of Moalboal. Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading Chasing the Kawasan Waterfalls (Badian, Cebu): Photo of the Day

Walk in Paradise at Kalanggaman Sandbar, Leyte: Photo of the Day

There are many amazing ways to look at the gorgeous Kalanggaman Island, or Kalanggaman sandbar, off the coast of Palompon, Leyte (can also be accessed through Cebu) — aerial shot, underwater shot, jump shot, and just about any angle you can imagine. Whatever the angle is, we can bet our traveling foot that the photograph will turn out beautiful, like this photo by Bert Al Fronte Millendez (check his Instagram acount, @alfro20, for more photos). Powder-white sand, clear waters, blue sky, warm tropical sun. It takes around an hour of boat ride to this small sandbar, so there’s a feeling of seclusion (except that you’ll most likely be joined by other tourists also seeking to get a taste of this island-paradise). We’ve been planning to visit this sandbar last year, but the travel gods have other plans for us. Most likely this year. Most likely we’ll encounter you there? See you in paradise. Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading Walk in Paradise at Kalanggaman Sandbar, Leyte: Photo of the Day

Photo of the Day: Flying Turtles of Moalboal

Turtles can fly, said the guys who took this photo. And we believe them. Swimming, after all, is simply flying — in water. It’s all about perspective, really, in the same way that aircraft landing is simply a controlled manner of falling back to earth. It’s awesome to see these majestic creatures, these sea turtles, gracefully flying uderwater in a manner totally opposite to how clumsy they are on land. The guys who took this awesome shot, Turtle Bay Dive Resort (check their Instagram account, @turtlebaydiveresort), should know. They have a dive resort in Moalboal (perhaps we’ll see you one of these days in Moalboal, lads?). We know the turtles of Apo Island Marine Reserve, but, in all honesty, we didn’t know there are turtles in Moalboal, a town south of Cebu City; only goes to show that we need to push our boundaries and check the underwater scene. Diving is fun, we’ve heard that before and we’re trying to convince ourselves about that, but Steven Spielberg and his Jaws really ruined it for us. We’ll muster enough courage one of these days. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Flying Turtles of Moalboal

5 Things to Remember About the Sinulog Festival (Cebu City)

We’ve had our fair share of Sinulog celebrations in Cebu City, but now our participation is limited to watching this annual festival on tv or reading about it in write-ups. We can’t join them all. Still, we intend to immerse our children in the Sinulog. Here are 5 things that, in our opinion, we must imprint in their young minds as they begin their Sinulog journey (we were actually thinking of 15 things to remember, but that’s too much even for us). Continue reading 5 Things to Remember About the Sinulog Festival (Cebu City)

Photo of the Day: Juana of Sinulog (Cebu City)

One prominent feature in any Sinulog celebration is a beautiful woman carrying the Sto. Nino. She is Queen Juana. Immediately after Fernando Magallanes, better known as Ferdinand Magellan, claimed the islands later known as the Philippines, he presented an image of the child Jesus (Sto. Nino) to the chieftain of the islands, Raja Humabon. He baptized the chieftain, and his queen (Humamay or Amihan), and gave her the name Queen Juana. The Philippines was named after Philipp II, son of Carlos I of Spain (also called Charles V) and Queen Isabella. The mother of Carlos I is Queen Juana, after which the wife of Rajah Humabon was named. This history refresher explains a lot about what guests see during the Sinulog Festival of Cebu. The story goes that Queen Juana was overwhelmed, she began dancing carrying the Sto. Nino. Her subjects followed suit. This is said to be the very first celebration of the Sinulog. This wonderful image, courtesy of Vin (follow his Instagram account, @vin_aranas87), shows a Queen Juana during the Sinulog Festival 2016 (Cebu City). She must have faith. She must be beautiful. She must know how to dance. And she must have the stamina to dance during the whole-day festivity, throughout the city streets, under the scorching rays of the sun. Respect. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Juana of Sinulog (Cebu City)

Photo of the Day: Mactan Moon

It’s not easy to take a photo of the moon. Well, yes, it’s easy to snap a photo of the sky with that glowing sphere somewhere in the shot, but capturing a nice view is a challenge. Either the shot is focused almost entirely on the moon, seeing all its arteries and pimples, like this one, or, with the moon just a blob of light, focused on the surroundings. We still have to learn the perfect trick to take a nice photo of the moon. Whatever the reason is for our own inability to capture a nice lunar moment, and perhaps because of this inability, we always appreciate a good shot when we see one. Yes, there are technically sound shots, but we better appreciate an unprepared travel shot which would almost always require the stars to align and the traveler to be ready. We’ve always said that it’s difficult, for some reason, to gaze up and appreciate the moon while confined in and around city skyscrapers. Go out to the edges of the Philippine islands (and that, ironically, could be a stone’s throw away from the city) and you’ll see the moon draped in all its background glory. There’s a time of the day when total darkness has not yet fully descended, when the sky still has remnants of the sunny blue. There’s that moment when a boat zips through the blue sea, the view framed by the white-laced tropical island silhouette, sliced through the middle by a streaking dull streak of lunar yellow, just like how a master chef uses a sharp edge to turn a straight squirt of sauce into an artistic culinary smudge. It’s not surprising that when we saw this photo of the moon over Mactan Island (Cebu) by Shan -— who practices Aesthetic Medicine and enjoys experiencing beauty, passion and joy around the world — we got hooked (check her Instagram account, @chefjade, for more photos). Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Mactan Moon