Tuesday, May 8, 2012

How a Failed Trip Turned into an Epic Impromptu Getaway


I have been planning for two months for this trip. The night before our trip, everything's perfect. I had a solid itinerary, complete with routes, accommodations and budget allotment. The next day, me and my husband traveled to NAIA Terminal 3 to catch our flight. We alloted 3 hours travel time (Pampanga - Naia), which is actually a more than enough. To our surprise, the MRT wasn't operational and the queue went all the way to SM North Edsa. I got nervous and scared.. and frustrated, and pissed. We road a bus and crossed our fingers the traffic would spare us. It didn't. To cut the story short, we were left by the plane.

And that started our adventure. 

I'll admit, I was disappointed for like a quick minute or two. I went silent. I thought so hard, now what? We can't just go home just like that, it's like a walk of shame. I've considered taking the bus going to Naga but I read they only travel during night time. It was around 10am, where will we waste that much time? MOA? Oh God no.. not another mall.

Then it hit me! We've always wanted to go to Tagaytay. I've planned it seriously twice in the past but when it's time to go, something always happens. What could possibly go wrong this time? We drafted a quick estimated budget and alternate itinerary.

After asking several persons for the direction, we finally made it there!

Pure Bliss - Perstaym eh!
It was just a quick half day trip, but nevertheless, it was the most fun trip we ever had. I'm so lost of words on how to describe it, but think of it as our own version of The Amazing Race. Limited time, limited budget, no maps, only difference is that we had fun, giggling on every time we get lost. Again, we didn't have decent couple photos. We were so in the zone and just savored every moment we were there.

Then came dusk, we didn't want to spend the night in Tagaytay. Why not? We had another trip in mind for the next day, so a night in a touristy place is not in the budget. Yeah, we're poor travelers (#mahirap - a hashtag I never actually see on any social sites). We asked several people again, asking for a route going to Batangas. Why Batangas? You'll see why.

We were informed that there are buses going to Batangas in Turbina, Laguna. We rode a public van going to that bus terminal. We planned to stay in that vicinity so we can readily ride a bus early morning but we can't seem to find a cheap hotel in the area. We rode a jeepney going to Calamba and stayed in a cheap yet clean hotel. While walking around Calamba that night, we saw signs that Rizal's house is just around there somewhere.

The next day, we walked early in the morning to check out Rizal's house. I know, it may seem silly, but even those kind of spots excites me. We went there, along with high school children who were in an excursion.

Rizal's house. No wonder his parents were Don and Donya - their house is huge!
After a quick tour inside this house and the nearby church, we hurriedly went to the bus station to catch a bus going to Batangas pier. Fast forward, as everything went smoothly and we found ourselves under the the scorching sun in a beautiful beach. We were in Puerto Galera.

Coincidently, PAGASA announced that this day marks the start of the summer. How awesome is that!

It's so nice to be greeted by this view.
Puerto Galera may be mainstream, but it's the best beach when it comes to convenience. No plane rides, no booking in advance, just a smooth boat ride.

Puerto Galera - perfect for a quick beach fix!

The beach comes so alive during nights with pounding music and amazing fire dancers!
That night, we stayed at Las Villas del Natividad Resort, located at the White Beach. It wasn't a pretty satisfying stay, so I won't elaborate anymore. Let's just say it was one of those times when I wish I should have researched in advance. Clue: it has something to do with cleanliness.

The next day, we prepared early to catch our early morning boat ride back to Batangas. It was a fun ride since we were only 6 in the boat, already including the crew. It was a rough, bouncy and exciting ride! The waves dribbled the boat so hard that at one moment, the boat's machine shut down. We were laughing nervously the whole time.

I'm so thankful to have the best travel partner slash husband. Sudden change of plans may shake other couples but luckily, this just made us appreciate each other more. Looking forward to our next destination! I'm praying to all land and air deities to to be on our side next time. CDO - Bukidnon - Camiguin, our DIY version, coming this November (ughhhh, so excited)!

***two-month late post... will explain on next entry.

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