Tuesday, July 31, 2007

TO ALL READERS: Pls. vote for my blog

I "encourage" everyone who read this blog to please vote for my kegler747 blog as "Filipino Blog of the Week" at http://salaswildthoughts.blogspot.com ... You can find the poll at the blog side bar & I'm the second nominee. This is my 3rd straight nomination so I want to win this time :) It will only take 1 minute of your time.

Thank you all!

Monday, July 30, 2007

Get Fecthed on Fechr.com

I would like to thank one of my favorite blogger ninjathet for sharing a good find for bloggers especially for those who want to expose more their blog/s which will result in increased visitor traffic. Go to Fechr.com, a website promotion tool that offers a guaranteed 100 daily visits in exchange of having bloggers promote about their site.

It is in its trial period so to be featured is FREE at least as of this day. After that they are planning to charge 1 penny per visitor. I hope I'll be next in queue :)

Friday, July 27, 2007

Travel Tips to Live By

the coolest airplane in the world!

1. Positive Attitude - No matter what happens on your trip, it is your story to tell. Don’t let bad incidents ruin your whole experience. Don’t let others bring you down. You worked hard to get to this point and you deserve to enjoy it.

2. Patience - You will not make every train, bus, ferry and airplane. Instead of getting angry, take the time to explore your surroundings, get a cup of coffee. You will have to wait, but at least you are waiting in some exotic country!

3. Pack Light - Make sure your pack can fit on the plane as carry on luggage. If it is too big, take things out. Never take clothings that you wouldn’t be willing to throw out along the way (ex: bring old clothes).

4. Talk to People - Start talking to strangers on the plane trip, and don’t stop till you are home again. You will be very lonely if you do not allow yourself the chance to meet new people. You especially need to do this if you are traveling with a friend.

5. Keep a Journal - You will learn a lot about yourself on this journey. Document what you see and who you meet. Make writing in it a habit from the first day, and don’t be lazy. You will appreciate your efforts in ten or twenty years.

6. Take Pictures - Bring home the proof that you went cliff diving. No matter what kind of photographer you are, pictures you take mean a lot more than postcards and books. And take more pictures of people rather than objects. Or combine them.

7. Be Flexible - No matter how long you are gone, and what you see, there will always be new places to go. Allow room in your schedule to follow up on travel leads gained on the road.

8. Be Independent - If you think you are unable to go to Europe alone, GO! If you are traveling with a friend, do things by yourself too. Time apart will reduce stress in the relationship and open you up to the people around you.

9. Be Confident - Always maintain confidence in your ability to get from one place to another, whether across the continent or the city. Even if you don’t know what you are doing, confidence can cover this up. You will appear strong and driven. Note, this is a great way to deter thieves.

10. Be Yourself - You will meet a lot of people on your trip. Be yourself, and allow them to enjoy the company of a great guy/girl

H A P P Y T R A V E L I N G !

These tips were taken verbatim from: click me

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Sikat sa Laos (famous in infamous)

Patuxay a.k.a. Gate of Triumph

The title is not an oxymoron at least for Filipino readers. It is roughly translated (Filipino to English) as "famous in infamous." This post is about the country Laos which is part of the Southeast Asia region. So... What's in Laos which made me and 3 of my friends go there?

It is a land-locked little country that relies on its unspoiled
beauty and friendly people as its main draw. Life in that charming country is so simple and laid back as even the rush hour traffic which city dwellers like me would joke about is nothing for the Lao native. The country is bordered by Thailand to the west, Myanmar and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east and Cambodia to the south.

For many Bangkok is a shopper's paradise but in Laos souvenirs, t-shirts and woodworks are cheaper than in Thailand as the currency of Laos (the kip) is so much devalued at about US$1-9,900 kip as of January 2007. Almost all shops accept the Thai baht as legal tender. Credit cards can be used in major hotels in Vientiane, but are of little use elsewhere.

General advice:

As like to every country in the world, travel common sense will guide you well in navigating Lao culture and way of life safely. When in Laos remember not to touch heads (it is considered the most sacred part of the human body), do not loose your cool with people and do not display your flesh. The rest is about manners, shoes left outside, accepting hosts' greetings and not upsetting religious feelings.

And by the way, it is good to bring sandals or slip ons to take off easily when entering temples as the city offers many temples worthy of a visit.

The Lao people are very friendly and hospitable and a minimum effort will make your trip smooth and memorable. Respect the culture and you will earn its respect in turn. Modest dress and discreet behavior will ensure you do not attract unwanted attention or embarrass others.

How to get to Vientiane, Laos from Manila:

- The most recommended by travel guides, economical and adventurous way to go to Vientiane (the capital of Laos) is through the Friendship Bridge which connects Laos and Thailand.

- We took a Cebu Pacific flight to Bangkok and connected via budget airline Nok Air to the city of Udon Thani, Thailand.

-From Udon Thani International Airport we took a van to the border town of Nong Khai, Thailand. From there, Vientiane is only a 30-minute bus ride.

-Direct flights from Bangkok to Vientiane's Wattay International Airport is also available

Monday, July 23, 2007

Another Great Reason to Fly

Low-cost airline Cebu Pacific (CEB), has reduced its ‘Go’ fares for most of its domestic routes which is available all-year round.

The lowest one-way fare you can get for the Manila-Laoag and Manila-Legaspi sectors including taxes and surcharges is less than P900.

One-way year-round fare from Manila to most Visayas destinations (and vise-versa) was reduced from P568 to P288 (excluding taxes and surcharges). The all-inclusive year-round fare for Visayas is now less than P1,300 one-way.

The year-round one-way fare for services from Manila to any Mindanao destination (and vise-versa) is now P688 (excluding taxes and surcharges) or P2,000+ for a one-way all inclusive fare.

One of the airline's objectives is to stimulate air travel and target bus and ferry patrons. I advise everyone to buy their tickets as early as possible (ideally at least a month before intended travel date) to get the best availability of the low fare offerings.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Elephant Massage & Temple Hopping in Bangkok

Bangkok is a place that wherever your head turns you will see a palace or temple nearby. I don't wonder anymore that it is called a "kingdom" and for the matter it is one because it is being ruled by a monarch. My Thai friend Siriwipa which acted as our tour guide and translator when me and my friends visited Bangkok proudly told us that the people of Thailand love King Bhumibol Adulyadej so much. One Thai told me that it's illegal to own a copy of the film "The King and I" as Thai people view the movie as an insult to their culture.

Yellow is the official color of the monarchy and as a sign of respect people wear yellow shirts during certain days of the week.

The views inside the temples and the Royal Palace were simply beautiful (the term beautiful is an understatement but I can't think of a more appropriate term).

When visiting one of the elephant sanctuaries in Thailand always ask for an elephant masseuse to give you a "Thai massage." It's the most unique massage that you will ever experience.

One travel bit I learned is that Buddhist monks in Thailand are not allowed to touch women because they must have pure thoughts and by touching a woman might make one think indecent things.

How to get to Bangkok from Manila:
-Airlines that ply the Manila-Bangkok route are Philippine Airlines, Thai Airways, Kuwait Airways and Cebu Pacific.

-Transport arrangements to and from the new Suvarnabhumi International Airport are pretty similar to the old Don Muang Airport. Taxi is the best way to and from the airport as it is cheap when traveling with at least with 1 companion.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Another Hurrah for Camiguin!

postcard material... hehehe

I found this article about Camiguin featured by The Travel Magazine. The Great Britain-based publication cited Camiguin has as one of the best beaches in the world. The magazine said that it is the best beach to visit during April.

The journalists and researchers for the magazine considered Camiguin as one of the best after clocking up a combined 26,800 miles of travel and set foot on over 1,000 beaches in all 6 continents.

The beach travelers stayed at the eco-friendly Enigmata Treehouse built by musician Ben Aicha.

Actually, it is always perfect to visit Camiguin anytime of the year (not just April). The weather is always perfect as it is seldom being visited by typhoons because of its geographical location.

Happy traveling!

Monday, July 16, 2007

The Best Travel Planner in the World... it really is

I have several printed copies of this in my files. For me its the most handy travel planner which every novice or seasoned traveler should have. You may download this by clicking the website Frommer's, a bestselling travel guide publisher. Travelers will find it very useful as it is a checklist on what to bring on your carry-on and checked luggage. It even lists that you should cancel your newspaper subscription if going on a long trip. If it is not on the list that means that you don't need it on your travel. It is the last thing that you should check before leaving the house that every item on that list has been checked.

There's even an activity planner version also from Frommer's.

Friday, July 13, 2007

New7Wonders launches the nominations for the New7Wonders of Nature

This is a plea to all Filipinos who are reading this blog.

As we know that the New7Wonders organization announced the 7 candidates which have been elected to represent global heritage throughout history. The listing is in random order, as announced at the Declaration Ceremony on 07.07.07. All the New 7 Wonders are equal and are presented as a group without any ranking.

1. The Great Wall, China
2. Petra, Jordan
3. Christ Redeemer, Brazil
4. Machu Picchu, Peru
5. Chichén Itzá, Mexico
6. The Roman Colosseum, Italy
7. The Taj Mahal, India

Now, there is what the organization calls the New 7 Wonders of Nature. Please, please, please nominate a natural site or natural monument that you think should be one of the New7 Wonders of Nature. You can submit up to 7 nominations. If you have natural sites here in the Philippines which are worthy to be called the New 7 Natural Wonders of the World feel free to do it now. Redundant nominations are needed for our voices as Filipinos to be heard.

Click Here to go the the official web site of the New7 Wonders of Nature. Please read carefully the Criteria page so that your nomination will not be a waste.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Buy 1 Take 2 Sale of Philippine Airlines

Saw this very interesting bit of information from the official website of Philippine Airlines:

Buy 1 Economy Class Domestic Ticket and Take 2 Domestic Economy Class tickets for free!

Because you deserve a better deal!

Sale period from 09 - 21 July 2007 and for travel from 01 August - 15 October 2007.

For bookings, call PAL Reservations in Manila: (02) 855-8888, Cebu: (032) 340-0191, Davao: (082) 222-0366 or your travel agent.

Promo applies to PAL services only.

Conditions for travel:

*Roundtrip or one way Economy class to any PAL Domestic Destination
*Tickets purchased as one way are entitled to free one way domestic tickets
*Free! 2 domestic tickets for every purchase of 1 economy ticket
*Plus: Modern French-designed, convenient terminal

Plus: Spacious aircraft interiors and seating comfort
Plus: Free inflight snacks and beverages, including coffee and water
Plus: Free inflight music, film features and newspapers
Plus: Modern fleet of B747, A340, A330, A320, and A319 aircraft

*Exclusive of taxes, fees, and surcharges
*Restricted for sale within the Philippines
*Until supply lasts
*Other travel conditions apply
*This promo is not available for online purchase.

It's travel season again for ticket bargain hunters as it is the lean season as far as the local travel/tourism industry is concerned. The weather nowadays is unpredictable as it is already typhoon season. The best place to travel now is Mindanao as the region is seldom being struck by typhoons because of its geographic location. They have their own share of rain down there in Mindanao but not much typhoons. Philippine Airlines' gateways to Mindanao are Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Cotabato, Dipolog, General Santos, Butuan, Dipolog, Ozamis and Zamboanga.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Boeing unveils a "Green" mid-size passenger aircraft

The world's leading aircraft manufacturer launched a new major passenger aircraft model for the 1st time in 13 years. And the 787 Dreamliner model might replace the Boeing 737 as the new workhorse for short- to mid-range destinations with special emphasis on point-to-point travel as opposed to the Airbus A380 hub-to-hub business model. Up to date, Boeing has received more than 600 firm orders for the Dreamliner. It is a safe number for the model to be viable.

Boeing needs to cash in on the soaring demand for the Dreamliner. It needs to double its effort to satisfy its launch customers as word-of-mouth from airlines means a lot to the aircraft industry.

Many airlines chose the Dreamliner because of better business sense because the aircraft company promised increased fuel efficiency and cost savings, including making flying environment-friendly. The aircraft is of conventional design with low sweptback wings and two underwing pylon mounted engines.

The design's main objective is to allow airlines to fly directly to smaller airports avoiding the need for passengers to transfer flights to regional destinations.

Hope to ride on one :)

Monday, July 9, 2007

My "hypothetical" Travel Passport

Found this website through someone else's travel blog. I find it cute and somewhat reliable because I agree with most descriptions in my traveler profile below. I encourage everyone to click the link below my hypothetical passport and answer a questionnaire to find out what kind of traveler you are.

Your travel type: Travel Yup

The Travel Yup likes exotic and adventurous travel, but prefers big cities with fast paced life. He has a keen interest in other cultures and always brings home a few souvenirs.

Shopping in Bangkok, getting a tailor made suite in Kuala Lumpur, that's the kind of thing the Travel Yup is into. Even though he likes to get away, he prefers his travels to be comfortable.

top destinations:

New York

stay away from:

Ciudad Perdida
Darien Gap
get your own travel profile

Happy traveling!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Thank you Mindanao Bloggers!

I am very honored because of the chance given to yours truly by Mindanao Bloggers (http://www.mindanaobloggers.com/) for making me a contributor/author for its blogsite. I feel that I'm kinda an outsider in their circle of bloggers as I have no direct association with Mindanao as I am raised in the concrete jungle of Metro Manila, my mother is from Isabela province and my father is from Iloilo.

The only time I can immerse with the culture and life of the people of Mindanao is through my travels and that is what I intend to contribute to Mindanao Bloggers. I pretty much covered the Luzon and Visayas area and now I am starting to discover the beauty of Mindanao. Up to date, I have been to only 4 provinces of Mindanao but will definitely visit new places there and probably visit Davao and Camiguin again. My close friends all know that Camiguin is so far my favorite province the entire Philippine Islands and some of them now have plans to go there thru my marketing ability.

I want to thank Mr. Blogie Robillo of Mindanao Bloggers for opening the door for a novice blogger to contribute to the blogsite.

I want to invite all the visitors of my blog to also visit Mindanao Bloggers to find anything and everything about Mindanao.

More power to Mindanao Bloggers!
Proud to be a Mindanao Blogger!

Thursday, July 5, 2007

The art of sleeping in AIRPORTS

I just accidentally found this website (www.sleepinginairports.net) when googling for the world's best airports. Never tried to sleep in an airport before but after reading numerous independent traveler reviews on the website I don't mind sleeping at Singapore Changi International Airport which the website accorded with the 2006 Golden Pillow Award. I totally agree with the reviewers for citing Changi as it is also my favorite airport so far. The following are interesting excerpts from the sleepinginairports website.
  • For travellers who are REALLY on a budget and are looking for a way to skim a few bucks off their travel expenses, why not consider sleeping in an airport? Many airports are actually better than local lodging. And to top it off - IT'S FREE! Your friends and family may look at you funny when you return with your airport stories, but that's only part of the fun. So now, sit back....get out your travel itinerary and plan which airports you're going to sleep in (or avoid altogether) during your next trip.
I'm disheartened that our very own Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) was listed on the airports that travelers would rather try to avoid the most. I can't blame the reviewers, as I believe that the reviews are credible enough. I wouldn't even dare just to lie on those cold steel rusty chairs or filthy carpet.

Sweet dreams!

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Siquijor Pictures

My Boracay... Extra! Extra! Read all about it!

The Philippines' #1 travel destination for beachcombers was cited by Yahoo! Travel (http://travel.yahoo.com/beaches) as one of the best beaches on earth. According to the website it is one of the places ideal to build sandcastles, take a romantic sunset stroll or perfect one's tan.

I've been to Boracay 6x since 1996 and I still love it. Nothing can beat my first time in Boracay 11 years ago as it is still a quiet, charming and unadulterated island north of Panay. Its charm is different now, as capitalism takes it toll. Many tourists said that Boracay is overrated as the prime destination for foreign visitors, nevertheless, its beauty and its very fine white sand is still there so if you love those why not visit it. There are so much FUN activities during the day and also at night... actually, its like a 711 of activities as one will never get bored finding one.

According to the locals, the best time to go there is during the months of September and October as they call it "Little Summer" less the crowd during the school holidays. Room rates during those times are a fraction of the peak season rates.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Transformers... two "hinlalaki" up!

(Disclaimer: I have really no intention to write this particular post as it is not inline with the theme of my travel/The Simpsons blog. But due to insistent Bianca demand here it goes...)

One lazy Saturday morning I received an SMS from my very good friend Ziella Bianca insisting that we should watch Transformers as she claimed that her friends enjoyed the movie very much. I'm having second thoughts as all I want to do for that day is just watch tv, eat and have a siesta.

Oh well, how can you resist a persistent woman. In return she promised that she will accompany me to the Simpsons Movie. In other words, of I go that afternoon to Alabang Town Center for the 6:35pm screening. Work was cut out from me as Bianca said that she already bought the tickets but when I arrive at about 4pm she's panicking claiming that she can't find the tickets. After a laborious search of her bag and other belongings she remembered that she forgot to claim the tickets from the selling counter (I just kept silent and smiled as I'm used to that situation... It happens to everyone, right???... hehehe)
(if your name is ziella bianca and reading this post I have only one thing to say..."peace!").

Concerning the movie itself, if you have a Y chromosome built within you, I guarantee that it's worth the effort and money to see the movie at least once. I love fighter planes, cars, big trucks, robots and all other things shiny for that matter. To summarize it all "I love the movie" as I am a special effects junkie, I can confidently say that
the film feature one of the most spectacular action and effects sequences of any movie at least for the first part of this year.

Those robots with a metal brain and probably also with a metal heart knows how and when to be funny in their own little (or big) ways.