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Travel

    I’d Like To Visit…

    Everyone has their own “Top Places To Visit” and so, I’m going to share mine too! 🙂 These are the local and international places that I would like to visit for this year; hopefully, I’d be able to visit them ALL. I know that the expense will be my greatest hindrance here, but hey! If there’s a will there’s a way. 😛

    1. Masbate Province, Philippines

    Photo grabbed from http://www.idreamedofthis.com/

    Photo grabbed from http://www.idreamedofthis.com

    I first found out how wonderful and what Masbate can offer is through the blog post HERE’S WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT MASBATE. of my personal friend and a fellow blogger as well, Simon Gonzaga. I wasn’t really interested in visiting Masbate until I’ve seen his post. Now, it’s number one on my list! Thanks for sharing it and inspiring me, Kuya! 🙂 Then another friend of mine went to Masbate recently and posted his photo of the Milky Way! I repeat, MILKY WAY! Really, wow!

    2. Sagada, Philippines

    Photo grabbed from http://dangwerelost.com

    Photo grabbed from http://dangwerelost.com

    I’ve been in Baguio for many times already but have not gotten any chance to visit the gorgeous Sagada. This place became even more popular because the movie “That Thing Called Tadhana” – where do broken hearts go, eh? 🙂 I even read somewhere that there is this place called Marlboro Country where you could spot wild horses. I wonder if I’d still be able to spot wild horses in there because if yes, that would be really one of a kind experience for me! I also know that it’s always crowded in there now but, I don’t care! 😛

    3. Japan

    Photo grabbed from http://thetummytrain.com/

    Photo grabbed from http://thetummytrain.com

    Tell me, who doesn’t want to visit Japan?! Definitely, not me! My dream country to visit since I was a child, probably influenced by my Otousan who worked there for years and of course, the Anime. Currently, I don’t know which city to visit yet because I think I’ll enjoy the place as long as it’s in Japan. Haha! I prefer to visit during Autumn instead of the season of Cherry Blossom~

    These are my current top picks, though I’d like to visit more than three places for this year.
    How about you? What are the places you’d like to visit? 🙂

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    We Live To Explore

    In my previous blog, I have shared that I bought my first camera, Fujifilm X-A2! The Fujifilm X-A2 is a mirrorless camera that is good for entry-level and upon research, these are the key features of X-A2:

    • 175° tilting LCD screen with face and eye detection (hello, selfie!)
    • 16.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
    • Newly-developed Eye auto focus (AF), Auto Macro AF and Multi-Target AF
    • 5.6fps burst shooting
    • Built-in wi-fi (photos from the camera could transfer immediately to mobile phones)
    • A pop-up flash and external hotshoe
    • Classic Chrome film simulation mode
    • Full HD video recording capabilities at 30 frames per second and a multiple exposure mode

    I am currently using the new XC 16-50mm II (24-76mm) F3.5-5.6 OIS zoom lens, which I think is the most basic kit lens of X-A2 (correct me if I’m wrong). What I also like about this camera are the built-in range of film simulation modes and creative effects, which helps me to take better photos. 🙂

    Last week, I have spent my off-days to get lost and wander with my camera, just so that I could try out its different features… They think I’m crazy for doing it, but no! You know how much I like going out, right?! Haha! That’s why the title of this post is “We Live To Explore“. With that being said, let me share with you the unedited photos that I have taken. SOME of the photos that I have uploaded on my Instagram account are edited and filtered using VSCO app. However, if you’ll look at the unedited photos, there’s no need for filter anymore. 🙂

    Any thoughts, comment or suggestion about my shots? 🙂 If you haven’t noticed, I like playing with sunlight and shadows. <3

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    Weekend Getaway at Baguio City V.2

    It was surely an unplanned Baguio visit with my team mates. Februrary 26, 2016 – we didn’t even know that it’s Panagbenga Festival! *chuckles*

    We all agreed to meet in Victory Liner, Cubao at around 5AM. I told them that I’ll buy bus tickets for us since I’m the first one to get there. Sad to say, the earliest possible that we could get was at 10:30AM. Yes, I did buy the tickets because #YOLO, it’s now or never! Haha. So we had to wait for 5 more hours and was hoping to be a chance passenger in earlier trips, but still nah.

    Chance Passenger

    Arrived in Baguio City at 5PM then we checked-in Hotel Veniz. I have missed the Lomo Ribs of Canto so I dragged them at Ketchup: The Food Community to have our dinner.

    Lomo Ribs

    No definite plan afterwards, so we just had a night walk around Wright Park, Burnham Park and Session Road. After the long night walks, we finally decided to go back to hotel at around 11PM then watched The Conjuring on HBO!

    Burnham Park

    © Dominic Dawat

    Burnham Park

    On the next day, we went back to Burnham Park. The gorgeous scenery and the cool weather, oohh… the things that I always miss to see in Baguio City!

    Mines View Park

    Nothing much have changed since my last visit. Still a popular place to get cheap pasalubong, plants and to have a cliff overlooking the mountains.

    The Mansion

    We rode in jeepney from the Mines View Park going down to The Mansion –  the summer residence of the Philippine President. Only good for taking pictures because going inside the mansion is not allowed and other than that, there’s nothing else to do.

    IMG_9890

    Wright Park

    Right in front of the Mansion. We often joke that the place and the vibe look like the same from what we see in Koreanovelas. 😛 We have enjoyed the sight of the people walking around, the horse back ride, the pine trees and all the other things that the Wright Park could offer!

    IMG_9926 IMG_9938

    Botanical Garden

    Botanical Garden is just 10 minutes walk from the Wright Park. A cool place with nice flowers, photo opportunities and interesting structures such as Chinese pagoda, Golden Gate Bridge, various other bridges and walkways with plenty of shade.

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    Golden Bridge, OTWOL feels!

    Laperal White House

    Another famous spot along the Leonard Wood Rd. is the Laperal White House. A Victorian style house with a dark history but it was now transformed into a gallery of Filipino artworks based on bamboo and wood.

    IMG_0003 IMG_9976

    Bagiuo Museum

    It was my first time here. The Baguio Museum is a 4 storey building that proudly presents the history and the transformation of Baguio City. There are also displayed paintings that they sell.

    IMG_0018 IMG_0011Panagbenga Festival

    Just a few shots of the Panabenga Festival because it’s almost time for us to go back to Manila. 🙂

    Long walks around Baguio City is so worth it!

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    CD-R (CJ, Doms and Rika)

    Weekend Getaway at Baguio City V.1

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    Make Your Dream Travel Come True with DLC Backpackers: Your Travel Expert

    Travel PR photos 1

    Backpacking is definitely in! Not just as a popular mode of traveling, but also as a way of life.

    Backpacking was often considered for hiking and camping but in many ways, it is now slowly transforming into an independent and low-cost international travel options for individuals or a group of people.

    This trend started as an economical solution for the aspiring travelers who have major budget constraints and now became the most preferred option by many. No matter how well their budget is, the experience of backpacking is truly different.

    Travel PR photos 2

    Since backpacking is now considered as one of the trendiest travel options by many people from different countries, DLC Backpackers: Your Travel Expert brings the trend in the Philippines! Your travel expert will help you get the best travel packages that will give the worth of your money and an adventure like never before.

    DLC Backpackers: Your Travel Expert will make you experience a life changing travel – an adventure that will touch people’s lives. Our travel packages are way more different than the other agencies could offer as we are focused on having a travel adventure with an impact: connecting people, learning other country’s culture and letting you appreciate life in a deeper manner. We are DLC Backpackers: Your Travel Expert.” Says the CEO, Trishie dela Cruz

    DLC Backpackers is under the Dream Lead Create or simply DLC Enterprise a company that DREAM about a better society, LEAD a team of highly-motivated young individuals and CREATE innovative and sustainable products and services. DLC promises to deliver state-of-the-art merchandise while restoring humanity through #WeTouchPeople Charity that will receive 5% of the total income to feed hundreds of kids. Know more about their company at dlc-enterprise.com.

    WETOUCH

    Why choose this newest and trendiest travel option, DLC Backpackers?
    Because not only that you can help the society by contributing on the “We Touch People Charity”, you will also be able to save as much as Php10,000 compared with regular travel options!

    No minimum travel persons required. Solo Backpackers are very much welcome!

    Travel Asia for as low as Php6,300/person and experience the adventure of backpacking! Save money while traveling, explore and learn more instead of having a travel agency that will double your travel expenses.

    Countries/Cities Available:
    Batam Indonesia, Hongkong, Macau China, Shenzen China, Kota Kinabalu Malaysia, Genting Highlands Malaysia, Johor Bahru Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, Japan, Thailand, Singapore, Siem Reap Cambodia, Vietnam.

    Here are some of the sample packages that they offer:
    They offer FLEXIBLE INSTALLMENT PAYMENT OPTIONS starting for as low as Php2500/month is also available just to help you make your dream travel come true!

    You will also get a chance to make new friends from all over the world because DLC Backpackers offers hostel accommodations where you could meet like-minded people – The “Travelers at Heart” kind of people.

    Traveling alone? No need to be afraid!
    Because you will be able to sleep safely on an 8 to 12-bed dorm-type of room together with other solo travelers!

    Hotels are so last year! Hostel is the new in!

    Want your privacy?
    Private Rooms are also available upon request!

    And wait! There’s more! DLC Backpackers also offers LOCAL DESTINATIONS!

    LOCAL PACKAGE 1

    DLC Backpackers offers UNIQUE TRAVEL EXPERIENCE and so they want you to reach places that are a lot of people haven’t been yet! Indeed Secret Places and Hidden Paradises!

    The destinations on the photos below are just some of their offers starting for as low as Php2,500 per head!

    Check out one of their local packages below:

    TRAVEL INCLUSIONS TEMPLATE

    Still confused about the difference of their offer than a regular tour?
    Check out this article here: Are you a Tourist or a Traveler?
    Take note that what they offer you is to become a TRAVELER.

    So, what more could you ask for?
    DLC Backpackers even include freebies from their product brands such as the Terrestrimin First Aid Travel Essential and the Terrestrimin ALL-IN-ONE organic spray to protect you during your travel adventure! A perfect travel companion!

    TERRESTRIMIN BENEFITS

    What are you waiting for? BOOK NOW!
    DLC Backpackers will make traveling easier! And will also help you make your dream travel come true!

    Use the discount code AURIKAMATIAS that is specially made for my readers to get 10% OFF when you book a travel deal with them!

    No budget yet? Don’t worry!

    ONE OF MY READERS WILL GET A CHANCE TO WIN A SOLO BACKPACKER TRAVEL DEAL FROM DLC BACKPACKERS ANYWHERE AROUND ASIA!

    HOW TO WIN?

    1.) Like Gumala with Aurika Facebook page.
    2.) Like the DLC Backapckers Facebook page, the DLC Enterprise Facebook page and their partner brand Terrestrimin.
    3.) Share this blog post on your Facebook wall with the caption “TRAVEL AROUND ASIA FOR FREE! DLC Backpackers will give you an adventure that touch people’s lives” to be followed with your answer on why you deserve to win this giveaway. Don’t forget to use the hashtags #WeTouchPeople and #DLCbackpackers to make your entry eligible.
    4.) Tag 7 of your friends on the comments section of your post.

    Giveaway Banner 1

    We will closely monitor your participation so best of luck!
    Winners will be drawn randomly on April 24, 2016.

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    Mt. Manalmon: Day Hike And More Adventures At Sitio Madlum

    We went to Sitio Madlum, San Miguel, Bulacan by a private car but if you prefer to commute, there are buses in Cubao that are bound to San Miguel, Bulacan. Arrived at Sitio Madlum around 10:30 AM; packed the things to bring for our day hike, left our extra clothes inside the car then we headed to registration area immediately. Glad that I’m with two people who have been there for three times already so they already know the way around. Expenses will be at the bottom of this post. 🙂

    Upon arriving in the registration area, the officer informed us about the new rule: No Permit. No Entry. Thankfully, even though we do not have a permit, they allowed us to hike just for this time because we were obviously not aware with the new rule.

    RegistrationRules

    The tour guide gave us an option if we want to start from Madlum Cave or hike the Mt. Manalmon first. We chose option 2.

    It was a short hike from registration area to Mt. Manalmon’s peak (1hr the outmost), the trail is good for beginners. Well, if you find the hike too short, there are also other mountains around such as Mt. Gola. 🙂 There is a small cave that serve as an entrance to Mt. Manalmon’s trail and we also had to go through the strong current of the river. We rest and had our snack at the peak while enjoying the strong wind and the beautiful view.

    Summary

    Mt. Manalmon

    At exactly 1PM, we went down from the peak then headed to the river where we spent some time to swim. There are also cliffs around where you could jump off into the deep parts of the river.

    River

    From the river, we headed back to the registration area to rent headlights for our next activity – spelunking inside Madlum Cave – something tick off my bucket list! Since spelunking requires you to use both hands… and your whole body, we thought of leaving our mobile phones inside our bags in the registration area, so we do not have a photo of our spelunking moments. Haha! We have now a reason (an excuse) to go back. 😛

    For adventure seekers, you’ll love this Monkey Bridge where you have to go to the other side by walking on wire! But only if you are brave enough to do it because there is another option, use the normal bridge. Haha. Also, they do have a harness now unlike before. Can you imagine yourself walking on a wire without a harness? I might have chickened out!

    money bridge

    bridge

    Too much adventure in one place for a day. For my last hike for year 2015, it was one heck of an experience!

    Expenses for group of 4:

    Registration Fee – Php 40 (Php 5/person)

    Tour Guide – Php 500 (Php 125/person)

    Headlight rental – Php 30/person

    Wash room – Php 10/water gallon (bought 2 gallons per person)

    Total expense per person: Php 180 🙂

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