My Thailand beach pilgrimage: 3 more to go!

Backpacking Saga Returns

Mar 2011: Thailand (Bangkok)
Aug 2011: Philippines (Bohol)
Dec 2011: Thailand (Bangkok), Cambodia (Siem Reap, Phnom Penh), Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh) with Shintarojon
Jan 2012: Thailand (Trang, Ko Muk, Ko Kradan, Ko Lanta, Ko Rok, Krabi)
Apr 2012: Thailand (Ko Lipe, Ko Tarutao, Bangkok, Krabi, Hat Yai)
July 2012: Philippines (Bohol)
Dec 2012: Thailand (Bangkok, Trat, Ko Kood, Ko Chang)
Jan 2013: Thailand (Bangkok)
Feb 2013: Indonesia (Jakarta, Pulau Seribu)
Aug 2013: Philippines (Bohol, Boracay)
Oct 2013: Thailand (Bangkok)
Dec 2013: Thailand (Phuket), Vietnam (Hanoi) with Shintarojon

Mission Island Protocol: Step foot on every island in Thailand. I've given up on the Philippines with her 7,107 islands and Thailand looks promising a mission. Let's rank the beach as well shall we? Huh. Btw, I'm currently studying Thai at Cambridge language school. Sanuk maak maak!!!!!!

01. Koh Phi Phi Le 2001, 2006
02. Koh Kood 2012
03. Koh Lipe 2012
04. Koh Phangan 2001
05. Koh Samet 2007
06. Koh Samui 2001
07. Koh Rok 2012
08. Koh Kradan 2012
09. Koh Phi Phi Don 2001, 2006
10. Bamboo Island 2001, 2006
11. Koh Tarutao 2012
12. Koh Ran 2008
13. Koh Poda 2007
14. Koh Muk 2012
15. Koh Tup 2007
16. Koh Ngai 2012
17. Phuket 2001, 2006
18. Chicken Island 2007
19. Koh Lanta 2012
20. Koh Chang 2012

A dozen more and I'll complete my Thai island pilgrimage!

Koh Tao
Koh Similan
Ang Thong
Koh Hong
Koh Surin
Koh Jum
Koh Mak

I’m back!!!!!!! Wishing to be back for a long haul. I have been inactive in recent years partly due to other personal pursuits, spiritual revival and career change. Has all the novelty gone? Yes. Most, if not all, of those in my friends list had become lesser active than they used to be. To see their last login date to be 2010 or worse 2009 crushes my spirit and it’s contagious. Blame it on Facebook! I once thought of deleting my stories and tips as they may no longer be current and kinda embarrassed of what I wrote. But for posterity sake, I decided to keep it so that I have something to remind me of my younger years.
Thanks to the new face of VT. The makeover is refreshing & a great start to restoring my interest. I hope to be mobile again & I always turn to VT for my researches. Old members may go but in a generation that circles the globe, there will always be neophytes to save VT from obscurity.
Truly this world is mysterious & beautiful. I have yet to see the deepest caves in Georgia, the remotest island in the Pacific or the most powerful waterfalls in Iceland. However, there’s an urgency in my spirit of the times we live in. We have become closer & closer to the day of the Lord prophesied in Matthew 24- the chaos in Middle East, destructive earthquakes, epic floods & unusual mass deaths of animals. Until ‘that’ day, I wish to occupy myself with continuous search of the beauty of His creations. I just have to constantly remind myself of James 13, 14, 15.
On that note, I hope to meet new souls in my resurrection, virtual & spiritual hahaha! (11-30-11)

Hot New Updates:
Anda beach in Bohol
Long Beach of Bohol
Can-umantad Falls of Bohol, video here
More of waterfalls and more of Bohol
Battle of Big Snakes in Bohol Samantha vs Prony Who is BIGGER?

"Peace be upon Israel."

my beach pilgrimage has just begun...

Dec 24-Jan 2 (All-Out Asian Tour with Shintarojon)
>Bangkok -----Bangkok arrival sleepless night haggard day divine
>Phnom Penh -----Shocking torture scenes emotional rollercoaster
>Ho Chi Minh -----Tunnel-crawling road-crossing high alert traffic craze
>Siem Reap -----Lauro Croft temple to temple tomb raiding blast
>Singapore -----Back to reality

*Done, whatta Asian trip! Superfun. Mega-fast track. Sulit for all seasons. A diamond experience! I love the mystery & innocence of Cambodia, crazy streets of Vietnam & sleazy nights of Bangkok!!!! Amazed by Angkor Wat temples. Shocked by the torture cells during Pol Pot regime. I ate dog & banana trunk in Cambodia, crawled past the Vietnam war tunnels, food trip in Thailand like there's no tomorrow. Ugh I hate that old biatch in Ho Chi Minh who charged me extra night at hotel. Even our li'l friends Gugito, Pugito & Prontito hate her... lol.

Jan 21-25 (Southern Thailand Island to Island Hopping Bonanza Tour)
>Koh Muk
>Koh Ngai
>Koh Kradan
>Koh Rok
>Koh Lanta

*Done, I love Trang's day & night market, Koh Muk's totally hidden, secret beach, Koh Kradan's lovely beach and Koh Rok's snorkeling experience and exquisite white sand. Ugh I'm still nursing my swollen itchy shoulders from a deadly jellyfish sting! I'm so disappointed with Koh Lanta, reminded me of Puerto Galera! On my 3rd time in Krabi, I learned how to get to airport by public transport!

March 31- April 8 (Deep Southern Seas Castaway Island Summer Extravaganza Tour)
>Koh Lipe
>Koh Tarutao
>Koh Adang
>Hat Yai

*Another dreamy island added to my shoplist- it’s the Maldives of Thailand!!! I’m so excited I just can’t hide it!!!! I miss the soft white sand of Koh Samet but Koh Lipe should be even lovelier.Tickets booked. Time to research where to stay & what to do!

Pinoy dish: sinigang
Vegetable: squash
Fruit: melon
Nut: pili
Pet: chicken
Color: gray
City: Bangkok
Flower: adelfa
Scent: lavender
Juice: melon
Chocolate: Guylian
Ice cream: ube
Dessert: buko pandan
Music: reggae
Beach: El Nido
Island: Inabuyatan
Movie: The Beach
Song: Return to Innocence (Enigma)
Male Musician: Bob Marley
Female Musician: Tracy Chapman
Male Vocal: Michael Bolton
Female Vocal: Whitney Houston
Cover Song: No Woman, No Cry (Jonathan Butler)
Idol Song: I Believe (Fantasia)
Actor: Leonardo DiCaprio
Actress: Sandra Bullock
Comedian: Michael V
Comedienne: Vice Ganda, Chokoleit
Genre: horror
Horror: Blairwitch Project

"No weapon of destruction formed against me shall prosper."

Lonely Soul

I search for paradise because it offers

>an idyllic setting

>a chance to remake myself in far-off place

>a chance to become more glamorous person than the one laboring in that cubicle

>a chance out there where i can be who i really want to be

>indulgence in fantasy when i am footloose in a foreign land, living off savings or money from home

>absence of reminders that I really should be doing something productive with my life

>new sense of freedom

>getting lost in the orgiastic besotment of revelry

>liberation from the routine, from the drabness of post-graduate life, of a pre-ordained career

>feeling of having bathed in a sense of community and shared purpose that surpassed anything I had felt back home

>emancipation from the realities of modern slavery

>a drive away from this maddening shiiiiithole

>a few magical moments

>scenes where I felt that the old rules didn't apply

>going off the grid and out of my head

>pre-electric island imageries before they were transformed by the brutal economics of tourism

>beauties of nature in its primeval form

>a venue for soul-searching

>a journey to whatever place it is that I can find moments free from self-analysis

Paradise will always be lost but I will never quit searching...

I'm gonna die in a place that don't know my name
I'm gonna die in a space that don't hold my fame

A Dozen Doable Domestic Dreams in the Next 5 Years

01. dive Tubbataha and all Coron wrecks
02. camp on Black Island
03. feel like a Hollywood star on Amanpulo
04. circumnavigate Coron Island
05. buy a piece of land in Palawan by the sea
06. cross to Borneo via southernmost tip of Palawan
07. see mandarin fish
08. set foot on at least 500 hills out of 1,776 Chocolate Hills
09. live like castaway on Inabuyatan Island
10. swim across from Matinloc Island to Tapiutan Island
11. get nude in Boayan Island
12. islandhop in Spratlys

CALAMIANES ISLANDS (March 20-24, 2008)
oh Malcapuya island, you are a stunner. i better shut my gob or else...
oh Black island, you are the last undiscovered castaway island on earth
oh Coron island, you left me in awe dipping into your deep blue lakes, wandering off your hidden crystal-clear lagoons
oh Busuanga island, i knew it wasn't the last time when i first landed 7 long years ago
oh Sangat island, you spooked me with your sunken ships and i knew it's just the start of it
oh Dicalubuan island, how can i forget you? the images of you left me breathless
oh Calauit island, i wouldn't need to go to africa as long as you exist
oh Dibutonay island, when we dumped you, it wasn't serious coz deep inside us we agree you are breathtaking

Who Am I?

I'm writing this article on purpose to give our VT members a lowdown on who I am as a traveler. As such, members who are of identical nature and mindset while on the road are welcome to join me as I set out on my expedition in search of the Holy Grail (hello Dan Brown).
1. Being a poor brown redneck from bumfuck Bohol, all I can afford at the moment is a ticket to cheap destinations: Europe and Caribbean are out of the question.
2. Being the cheapskate that I am, I stay on a run-down, ordinary, sometimes dingy space of a room in order to scrimp on my accommodation expenses and for me to stay longer.
3. Being the simple bumpkin that I am, I don't mind wearing shabby clothes and cheapie slippers while on the road, hotel lobby or airport. Hey, I'm not a superstar for me to obligatorily primp and preen.
4. A good book or music comes to my rescue for I'm always starved of conversation half of my travels, that is when I'm alone. The upside of traveling alone is the desperate need for a company which translates to active interaction with the local people and fellow travelers.
5. I'm not squeamish. In fact, I'm quite adventurous when in comes to food. As long as it's edible and disease-free, I'm ready to test the limits of my palate and the strength of my tummy. Slimy, mushy, squishy, gooey stuff might initially turn me bulimic, but no, my mother told me to finish my plate and waste no single morsel. Despite my ravenous attitude towards food, I only allocate a little budget for food, that means eating in carinderia and staying away from McDonald's.
6. The fear factor is out of my system. Come on. Lock me in the dungeon. Drop me from a helicopter. Dip me in the blood. Lay me beside a cadaver. Oopps....I renege on the last one.
7. If the driver quotes a ridiculous price to a destination then I'd gladly decline and rather walk no matter how far. I used to walk with my slippers to and from school in the province so it's not an ordeal.
8. Miniaturization and light-weight is the golden rule that guides me whenever I travel. For me to move around quickly and easily, I literally bring nothing with me (hello Shintarojon). I don't even buy trinkets and mementos from the place I visit no matter how rare, endemic or special they may be.
9. I'm a trailblazer too. I would rip through thick bushes, dodge crocodiles and glide over rocks just to reach and find my birthplace- the beach. Enough of tour guides. Sick of guided tours. Screw that itinerary. All I need is reliable information then I'm off to beating the track on my own.

Now tell me, are you my travel buddy?

"If God is for us who can be against us."

My Chic Choice

Top 3 Philippine Beaches
1. White Beach, Boracay Island
2. Dumaluan Beach, Panglao Island
3. Santa Fe Beach, Bantayan Island
*Amanpulo Beach in Palawan looks stunningly beautiful. It seems to be the closest rival of Boracay. I haven't seen it personally so I would give Amanpulo, at the moment, an Honorable Mention award.

Top Spots
1. Batad Rice Terraces, Ifugao
2. Chocolate Hills, Bohol
3. Puerto Princesa Underground River, Palawan

Favorite Island Setting
1. El Nido, Palawan
2. Boracay Island
3. Coron, Palawan
4. Port Barton, Palawan
5. Sabang, Palawan
6. Taytay, Palawan

Most Beautiful Tiny Island
1. Entalula Island, El Nido
2. Inabuyatan Island, El Nido
3. Cacnipa Island, Port Barton
4. Paradise Island, Port Barton
5. Cadlao Island, El Nido
6. Apulit Island, Taytay
7. Tapiutan Island, El Nido
8. Helicopter Island, El Nido
9. Miniloc Island, El Nido
10. Pabellones Islands, Taytay
11. CYC Island, Coron
12. Matinloc Island, El Nido

Most Beautiful Island Destinations in the Philippines
1. Palawan....a cluster of over 1,700 tropical islands
2. Boracay...exceptionally fine white sand
3. Bohol...exotic tarsier & eerie hills

Top World Beach
1. White Beach, Boracay Island, Philippines
2. Chaweng Beach, Ko Samui, Thailand
3. Hadrin Beach, Ko Phangan, Thailand
4. Saikaew Beach, Ko Samet, Thailand

Most Challenging Experiences on the Road
1. climbing Rock Peak of Pico de Loro, Feb. 2006
2. ferrying over troubled waters to Bantayan Island, Jan. 2003
3. arbitration at a police precinct in Phuket, Jan. 2001

Reggae Rules... Song of the Week

As you browse through my page, you would figure that whenever I get stranded in one place, I would certainly make a beeline for the beach than clamber up a mountain. No place in the world could ever give me that natural high, clarity of mind and unadulterated sanity than being on a beach, with my guitar on one hand and a pebble on the other skimming it over a calm sea me perched on a huge boulder my feet dipped in the water my toes lurching in the sand.
Did I say I love the beach? Maybe I should wear dreadlocks, wheeze out ganja or espouse Rastafarianism because the beach is the stronghold of such acts and beliefs. And before it slips out of my mind, I should mention Bob Marley and his reggae music. I am a reggae sucker. Bombom in Boracay is like a Marley's little lair. That's why I love that place. Simple. Quaint. Nostalgic. Wait... I just found another little underground lair with the pirates...the Red Pirates down south of White Beach, Boracay. The fact that it's located in the quiet part of the island makes it perfect. Away from blaring music, pulsating lights and ostentatious display of plasticity. Just you, the cold beer and some worthy chatters with...

i have to put this song right up there. brilliant. enigmatic. hypnotic.

"Porcelain" by MOBY

In my dreams I'm dying all the time
As I wake its kaleidoscopic mind
I never meant to hurt you
I never meant to lie
So this is goodbye
This is goodbye

Tell the truth you never wanted me
Tell me

In my dreams I'm jealous all the time
As I wake I'm going out of my mind
Going out of my mind

Top 10 W'Falls of the Philippines:

1. Tinuy-an Falls (Bislig, Surigao del Sur)...RR: Feb 15, 2009 (Distinguishing Feature: 3-tiered)
2. Maria Cristina Falls (Iligan, Lanao del Norte)... RR: Dec 16, 2007 (Distinguishing Feature: twin fall)
3. Tinago Falls (Iligan, Lanao del Norte)...RR: Dec. 16, 2007 (Distinguishing Feature: blue green water)
4. Can-umantad Falls (Candijay, Bohol) RR: Aug 20 2011 (Distinguishing Feature: 4-tier Bohol's least known falls)
5. Tappia Falls (Batad, Ifugao)...RR: May 2002, Feb 2005, Jan 2007 (Distinguishing Feature: ice-cold water)
6. Katibawasan Falls (Camiguin Island)..RR: Dec 13, 2007 (Distinguishing Feature: slender, high, shallow)
7. Daranak Falls (Tanay, Rizal)...RR: March 14, 2009 (Distinguishing Feature: veil-like falls)

"What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes."

Rastarigo Finds His Paradise

rastarigo reveals the best n d'extremes of his travels in d'last 13-14 months.

01. weirdest adventure dreadlocks n hippie fiesta award:
world rainbow gathering in ranong, thailand (dec 2006)

02. south sea island pacific dream feel award:
cruising over the blue waters of calangaman island in cebu (aug 2007)

03. finest softest whitest white sand award:
ko samet, thailand (jan 2007)

04. all-time favorite beach (seriously) award:
the fun with the surf in deserted sabang beach , palawan (november 2006)

05. most exhilirating pump your ass wet dreams award:
whitewater rafting in a 14-rapid length of cagayan river (dec 2006)

06. racing with death fresh landslides award:
the precarious bus/jeepney ride on the verge of mountain slopes from banaue to bontoc to sagada one rainy day (january 2007)

07. mesmerizing stunning awe-inspiring waterfalls grand award:
tinago falls , iligan (december 2007)

08. oh my god here she comes sharkstruck award:
closest encounter with the thresher shark in malapascua island , cebu (august 2007)

09. shining shimmering splendid jackstruck award:
diving with a dense wall of jacks in balicasag island, bohol (nov 2007)

10. deadliest high jump award:
the highest jump i've ever made in my life plunging into the cagayan river (dec 2007)

11. most enigmatic art-themed pad award:
enigmata treehouse, camiguin island (december 2007)

12. worst ever new year countdown through the fire award:
bedridden with high fever in my deathbed in krabi, thailand (jan 2008)

13. longest train ride award:
jakarta to jogjakarta, indonesia (april 2007)

14. first ever kayak natin to experience paddle award:
ko phi phi don, thailand (december 2006)

15. nastiest immigration control encounter award:
a clash with that condescending fat hoe in kuala lumpur airport, malaysia (december 2007)

16. cross-border criminal arrest award:
eewww i hate to recall i got photographed before they let me through in chiang mai airport, thailand (december 2007)

17. ice-cold coldest waterfall award:
dipping into its frigid waters is a personal pact i made that i broke for the third time in tappia falls, batad (january 2007)

18. one extravagant day award:
panic buying grab that shoes pick up that knapsack hysteria in pratunum, bangkok, thailand (december 2007)

19. most eccentric fruit i've tasted award:
munching on that scary snake-skinned fruit locally known as salak in malioboro, jogja, indonesia (april 2007)

20. superhot best last supper rolls of tissue please award:
a toss between tom yam in khao san road, bangkok and hot chicken in basil leaves in chiang mai, thailand. don't pressure me okay? (december 2007)

"Only a fool says there is no God."

  • Intro Updated Oct 4, 2013
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Jay Walker
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