Tag Archives: philippines

The contrasts of Manila.

As already mentioned, Manila is a motley city in terms of its buildings. There’s the full range – from favelas to neatly manicured well-to-do districts. When sitting in a restaurant in the latter, you could be forgiven for thinking you’re in Singapore (especially if you take no notice of passing Jeepneys and tuk-tuks). Here for example is the view out of my hotel window:

And here are some street views in the old town:

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Jeepneys, red-hot-chili ice cream, and Philippine roadside scenes.

In the last few posts we’ve seen plenty of Philippine natural beauty. Now we turn our attention to the anthropology of the country: time to walk take a ride around the streets of the small city of Legazpi, which sits at the foot of Mayon volcano…

The first thing that really grabs the attention is the jeepney – the most popular means of public transportation in the Philippines and the calling card for Philippine culture and art (they’re often gaudily painted/decorated) ->

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Flickr photostream

  • Japan / Jun 2024
  • Japan / Jun 2024
  • Japan / Jun 2024
  • Japan / Jun 2024

Instagram photostream

On quad-bikes around Mayon Mount: but up to its peak – on no account!

Next up on our short tour of paradisiacal Philippine islands – the Mount Mayon volcano.

Getting there from El Nido on a scheduled flight would have taken us ages, and since we didn’t have ages, we took a chopper again instead ->

From the get-go – oh my grandiose greenness! But yet again my photos were spoiled by the reflections on the windows of the helicopter. I wonder if there’s already some AI ML technology these days that can filter them out? I hope so: it’d really help on my summer holiday in Kamchatka this year…

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El Nido, the Philippines: islands, lagoons, caves, white beaches, turquoise sea. AKA paradise!

I keep a tally of the countries and cities I have the pleasure of visiting (for the first time), and just the other week I had an interesting +1 in Southeast Asia – the Philippines: my 105th country. And Manila was, oh – I’ve lost count; it was around my 320th city in the world I’ve now been to.

We were lucky this time: we had a long weekend there before the business part of the trip, so we decided to check out the beautiful islands of El Nido and also the Mount Mayon volcano. And since island hopping in the Philippines takes quite a while on scheduled commercial flights, we opted for the much quicker option: helicopter! ->

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Phinally – the Philippines!

I’d long dreamed of one day finally getting myself to the Philippines, and just the other week it finally came to pass…

I’ve been to other countries in the region plenty of times – with probably three dozen visits to both China and Japan, more than a dozen to Singapore, and more than once to South Korea, Vietnam and Indonesia. But for reasons beyond both my knowledge and control I’d never made it to the Philippines. I’d even planned visits to the country (many times) but each trip was eventually either postponed or cancelled – and not only due to the covid travel restrictions in 2020–2021. I’d wanted to get there to be able to check out the regional realities for myself and to get personally acquainted with our key business partners, etc.; after all, prospects in the country were (and still are) favorable: with a population of 120 million, the country is 30th in the list of economies of the world. There was also the magical natural beauty of the Philippine countryside I needed to check out, which I’d been told so often about by folks who’d already been. And now I’ve been, I can say for sure that my great expectations were not only met but exceeded! Here’s some photographic evidence:

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