Palm Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas

My nephew was visiting from Bacolod and we needed to get away from the scorching heat in the city, so we booked an overnight stay at a nearby beach. Batangas is the closest to “nearby” as we can get, and so I scoured TripAdvisor for resorts with the best reviews. Palm Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas came out on top. We made reservations via Agoda for a junior casita with an extra bed.

We were 5 in the party and were in high spirits on our way out of Manila. The map on their website was clear so we didn’t lose our way, but it was a long drive. Travel time was about 3.5 hours via Star Tollway.

The highway was undergoing major repair between the length of SLEX and Star Tollway so we were slow-moving at times, and traffic was expected in the towns leading up to San Juan since it was a Thursday. What took us by surprise was the mandatory “tourism” fee of P20/person when you reach the town. They say the fee collection is for the preservation of the natural beauty of the area for tourism. Shouldn’t the local government be taking care of that already from the taxes? Anyhoo, we didn’t let that spoil our day. Besides, we were greeted by a young vendor of suman with a wide smile and a very cheerful, albeit very loud, voice. That instantly lifted our spirits. Continue reading Palm Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas

Summer Cebu Getaway

I found out last January that my Mabuhay (PAL frequent flier) Miles were about to expire and I had not planned any trips yet to use them up. Since the husband had not been to Cebu before, I decided to make a quick booking there and just plan our itinerary later.

After my successful flight booking, searching for a place to stay and what to do were next on my list. I looked back to the past brief stays I had in the city and apart from the usual trips to see the Mactan cross and the MacArthur monument, I was totally out of ideas. Where to spend three whole days to do nothing? 😀

Bantayan Island
Bantayan Island. Photo from

I looked up beaches that were not too far from the city. Sure, Bantayan is fantastic but I doubt the husband (or I!) would have the patience for the long trip to go there, plus we’d need at least a week off to enjoy it. So I figured we’d need some place that did not require a boat ride and just 2 hours tops from the airport. I looked at beaches with good reviews online and narrowed down my choices.


Continue reading Summer Cebu Getaway