Travelling is part of our life. Visiting places, escaping the stressful environment and exploring different culture are some of the best experience that you would love about travelling. However, travelling is not all about enjoying the trips. You also have to consider that travelling requires money. You would never want to travel without carrying anything in your pocket.
When travelling, you would definitely try to check out some of the famous restaurants, pubs and clubs. With limited budget, you would not enjoy the amenities the place has to offer except if your trip is geared up to activities like hiking and camping.
Here are some tips on how to save your budget and prepare yourself for travelling.
1. Plan and schedule your travel. Travelling is not like going to the grocery store and wanting to buy everything you like with limited budget. When you travel, you need to plan ahead and think of the places that you wanted to visit. This gives you time to research and the opportunity whether to continue or reschedule your trip. You can check different airline promos and sale seats for earlier booking and cheaper prices.
2. Evaluate your lifestyle. Try to evaluate your lifestyle. Do you usually hang out with your friends in the mall, party in the pubs or go for shopping every payday? Though it is good for socialization, it contributes on your expenses rather than putting it on your savings for future travel plans.
3. Be a smart shopper. Knowing where and when to buy are two great things in order to save more money. Learn how to save more money when buying at the grocery store by checking their promo and wholesale section. For example, when you buy fresh products, prefer to go to wet market instead to a grocery store. Price difference is at most 10% cheaper.
4. Try cooking your own meal. Getting up early and preparing your own breakfast saves more money than buying your meal. It is better to spend time preparing your meal rather than spending your money. Besides you can choose your own food and improve your cooking skills.
5. Get busy and be more busy. It has been observed that being busy not just in work but in other activities gives you more opportunity in saving money. Being involve in other activities like sports, cleaning and other curricular activities sets our focus to accomplish the task, thus, leaving your expenses unattended.
6. Live a simple life. The simple life you have, the more you will be able to save. Since you are not spending too much on material things, your financial aspect starts to grow and this gives you more chances to save for your future expenses.
Now that we have the basics, hope that in your next travel, you will be more prepared than before.
Rapu-Rapu is pretty famous with its stories of Aswang. It was said to be that Aswang can fly hunting human as prey during at night while leaving its lower part somewhere in the forest where it could not be seen. Though in the modern period there have been no records reported that was attacked by Aswang.
Albay is rich in culture that even in the modern age stories of Aswang, Maligno, Kapre, Tik-tik are still being shared to the children.
The Islands of Rapu-Rapu was once part of the Province of Sorsogon not until it was declared in the late 1984 to be part of the Province of Albay due to the decision of its residence. It is composed of 3 islands namely, Batan Island, Rapu-Rapu Island and the Island of Guinanayan.
Because of the geographical location and abundance of natural resources, the people prefer to focus on agriculture such as farming and fishing as their livelihood.
I know what it feels like to be in Rapu-Rapu since it was the birth place of my mother and heard many stories from her and we also have countless visits during fiesta and reunion but I am having a mixed emotions of anxiety and excitement with our travel.
We chose Misibis, Bacacay as our port to take the shortest and safest route to Guinanayan island since not all knows how to swim. There are of many locals offering rides to Guinanayan with affordable price but luckily for us one of our colleagues have a boat of their own.
As the boat arrived, we hurdled down the shore carrying all the foods and drinks. It was a fair weather as we depart from the mainland so we decided to sit at the roof to watch the view. We didn’t mind the katig or outrigger runs through the water and splashes in our faces nor the sunny weather burned through our skin. Oh No! Out of enjoyment we forgot to put on sunblock.
It took less than an hour to reach the destination; As we saw the landmark of the island we are astonished by its beauty – white sand, clean shore and calm sea water. I ask myself, "What more could you ask!"
As we go down the boat and touched the water it felt very refreshing. We could not any longer so we hurried and search for cabanas, put down our bags, place the food and went to the shore and enjoy ourselves.
Eat food, Pilipino style! Who needs spoon and fork? The taste of roasted meat and grilled fish while on the beach is perfect and it is even more appetising while eating with your hands.
After eating, we make sure that we don't waste our time loitering. We put some sunblock and walk along the long stretched white sand to check out some sights. We also took souvenir photos with the Guinanayan landmark as our background.
An hour or two after, we noticed that it was low tide so we took some time to check out some of the fishes and crabs that are trapped in the puddles. We also saw some sea urchins near the seaweeds. I am sure that nobody wants to be pricked by those nasty spines. We noticed two kids under the sun, we snooped and see what they are doing. Funny to see them catching some small fish using a small deeper.
The sun sure knows how to drain our energy. We took some time to rest under a tree. Our nap was sure relaxing as the breeze passes through our skin while the birds make sounds and the sun is high. The feeling of Paradise!
As we woke up, a friend of our colleague passed by on a small boat. I was so happy that he asked if we could sail and tour us half around the island. Luckily they agreed.
Sunset to Night
The sun is already to go down and many of the tourists came to the shore to watch the sun while other are enjoying the water. Some of our colleagues played volleyball with the other tourist while some took time building sand castles.
As the night approaches we prepared our tent. There were no rooms for rent in Guinanayan, not as of today but I hope that someday there would be.
There were no electricity on the island but thankfully there is an available generator. To give more life on our getaway, we gathered all in one mat put out some drinks while sharing stories. We also hear some locals playing random old songs that I never heard before. Life in Guinanayan could never be simpler than this.
We have a lot of talks and sharing as the night ends. Some of us prefer to sleep outside the tent for experience. Mosquitoes? Don’t worry, there are no mosquitoes in the island. I have my insect repellent but I was unable to use it.
Since there is much to be desired from the Guinanayan Island and you shouldn’t expect more aside the wonders of nature and the relaxation it can offer. You may do as you please to satisfy your stay in the island just make sure to be considerate with the other tourists.
Here are some basic amenities that is available in the island.
- Volleyball – There is an available small beach volleyball court at the end of the shore. I am not sure if you can rent a ball or its free since we have our own volleyball when we visit the place.
- Snorkelling and Swimming– If you love being in the water you may relax and enjoy yourself with the freshness of the water. There are available floaters in the store.
- Fishing – Since the island is abundant with fishes. You may take time catching fishes. According to some fisherman, there are places in the island where you can catch huge fish and if you are lucky you might have yourself a small shark – I am not sure if they are kidding me or not.
- Tour – If you love touring on the sea you may rent a boat and check out some part of the island. There are said to be caves carved by the sea waves. You don’t have to worry because the water in the area is very calm especially on summer season.
- Camping – the island has no check rooms like resorts or nipa hut. You have to experience the way we spend our night watching the stars in our tent. You may bring your own tent if you like but there are for rent tents available.
Everyone loves to travel, either it be local of outside the country. As for me, I love local travelling. Travelling needs requires money. Who on earth would want to travel without any money in their pocket? I'm sure no one would like to be in a place without bringing some souvenirs.
I was scrolling my Facebook feeds I saw an image with a quote, “Once a year go somewhere you’ve never been before.” I was quite happy with that thought so I make sure that this year it would happen – that I would be travelling other part of our province that I never have visited before.
There I was thinking of travelling but there was something holding me back – money. I could not travel without any money. It’s not free. I would spend for sure since I want to travel for my own good. So I researched ways on how to save money and learned about 70 – 20 -10 money rule. I know 70 – 20 -10 principle more of learning method but I never think that it would be applied to financial aspect.
70-20-10 principle is the most basic computation when it comes to your finances but it may vary depending on your lifestyle. As for me, let’s start with the basic.
70 percent for living expenses. It is said to be that 70 percent from your salary should be allocated on your day to day expenses like transportation allowance, grocery, food and snacks, rents. 70 percent should cover all your basic necessity until you receive your next salary.
20 percent for Savings. Now savings is ideally divided into 3 parts but this is optional.
10 percent for retirement or insurance. Other than your employment contribution there are other firms that you may want to enroll like health insurance, life insurance or travel insurance. You may find insurance useful during travelling specially in covering medical expenses.
5 percent for emergencies. Emergency funds depends on how it is defined but ideally when we talk about emergency funds it should cover your living for the next three to six months.
5 percent for specific goals. Specific goals may differ amongst every one of us. It may either be for your wedding, car, and house but in my case it would be travel. 5 percent would be enough to cover a travel per year.
10 percent for Debt. Debt may be optional but in my case I have a cellular plan so I would consider as debt.
Again it may vary depending in your lifestyle and how dedicated you would be. As for me, I would consider the basic computation as my initial basis so I could travel this coming month.
Every year, Christians have an annual tradition called Semana Santa to commemorate the Passion of Jesus Christ. During this season there is what they call Visita Iglesa – tradition originated in Rome. Visita Iglesia is a known as pilgrim for penance.
Sts. Peter and Paul Church - Polangui
For our first visit, we have pick Saints Peter and Paul Church of Polangui, near Sabido Park. I have to admit that this is one of the churches I admire for its simple and elegant design.
Polangueño’s, people living in Polangui, are one of the well-known religious Bicolano that have kept their tradition up to this date.
St. Stephen Protomartyr Church – Ligao
Compared to other churches, I personally found the St. Stephen Protomartyr Church of Ligao similar to Churches during Spanish Era. Unlike many other churches built in stones, you won’t see any traces of stones as its foundation.
If you are to visit the St. Stephen Protomartyr you need to enter the Ligao proper. The church would give you a Spanish Era feeling by just watching its architectural design.
St. John the Baptist Church – Camalig
Like any famous churches in Albay, the foundation of St. John the Baptist Church are volcanic stones – carved and hand-crafted by ancestors of Camaligueños.
The entrance of the church is somehow different from other churches because of its incline pathway and the floor of the church is somehow above half-meter from the ground. I am not sure why it was made like that but it sure does got my attention.
By the way did you know that St. John the Baptist Church was declared to be one of the National Cultural Treasure?
Nuestra Señora de la Porteria – Daraga
Other than the St. Raphael Church of Legazpi, San Gregorio Magno is also one of the well-known Churches in Legazpi – Albay as part of Legaspi. San Gregorio Magno is also known as Albay Cathedral.
Albay Cathedral’s foundation is also made out of stones. You may see it inside the entrance and the walls outside the church.
As to its aesthetic view from outside, do not be fooled, St. Dominic de Guzman Church has a very fascinating internal design that I do not normally seen on every churches I visit.
St. Rome of Lima Church – Bacacay
St. Rome of Lima of Bacacay have changed a lot since I last visited the place. It is almost similar to St. Dominic de Guzman of Sto. Domingo – Historical external aesthetics and fascinating internal design.
We sure have a lot of fun during our Visita Iglesia but we won't end the day without a side trip.
It has been rumored that the old famous Mayon Skyline and Planetarium Hotel has been renovated by the Province and part of the park already done so it is a must to visit the place.
As expected, the place is filled with local and foreign tourist since its holy week.
According to the native, the province is targeting to finish renovating the Hotel and Convention Center this April. Maybe we’ll visit the place once more one it’s already done.
Sky Drive Inn
As our way down, we stop by the Sky Drive Inn and eat some hot meals. Sky Drive Inn just opened recently to accommodate tourists.
I have to admit, the place is very fascinating due to its location - near cliff with Mt. Mayon as background ground and with the view of the Albay Gulf anyone would drop by to take photos.
- Mayon came from the word “Magayon” which means beautiful.
- Most active volcano in the Philippines and a part of the Pacific Ring of Fire.
- Considered as the most perfect volcano because of its symmetry.
- The main landmark on the Province of Albay and shared geographically by eight municipalities: Legazpi, Daraga, Camalig, Guinobatan, Ligao, Tabaco, Malilipot, and Santo Domingo.
- It was declared a national park and protected landscape on July 20, 1938. Then later in year 2000 it was reclassified and renamed as Mayon Volcano Natural Park.
- In February 1, 1814 was the most destructive eruption in the history of Mt. Mayon that killed 1,200 people.
- The longest uninterrupted eruption that lasted seven days of raining fire occurred on June 23, 2015