I admit I took very simple things for granted. I grew up with almost everything provided for me – I consider myself as one of those “lucky” people probably born with a silver spoon in my mouth. I depended too much on household helps that it took me 21 years to realize that I don’t know how to survive without someone to rely on. This is what I have learned in Cebu for my week long exposure as a work crew in Young Life Summer Camp for High School students. Seriously? Yes.
Several months before June, me and my closest highschool friends planned for the ultimate “summer vacation” – and it was not in Cebu at first. Our tentative plan was the very popular Hongkong. Tables turned when my father told me that he will not allow me to go with my friends. I was really bummed and I have forgotten about the issue ever since. A few months nearing June, Marianne, a good friend of mine, messaged us that Cebu will be our destination for this summer. I was hyped about the plan because I had a good feeling that I will be allowed to go. And so, for two months, we did the planning — from plane tickets, maps, hotels, to itineraries, to van drivers, to whatever is needed to be booked and researched about.
We went to Cebu last June 3, 2010. It was indeed a memorable adventure. Not to mention that I got sick on the third day and missing out the experience of a lifetime – a night out with friends to celebrate a job well done. 🙂 Well, I stayed in the hotel. I meditated and rested have the energy I needed. Enough about my rants! *giggles*
WHAT DID YOU DO IN CEBU?
As first-time tourists in the area (when I say first time it means it is our first time to go together there), we checked in at Hotel Pier Cuatro on our Day 1 adventure. We went directly to Ayala and strolled down the huge mall. We were in awe because you can’t find a mall that big here in our hometown. Ayala is massive. Then we went off for a good and sumptuous buffet at Don Henrico’s – it was more of an Italian Buffet. We were all craving for Cebu’s best Lechon that night. But we had our stomachs full too. We toured I.T. Park also. My friends grabbed some grub at Starbuck’s. Maybe around 12am we still had a nice conversation. Pier One was next and we just had drinks. We took a good look at the Loft but it was already closed – too bad we really wanted to party. Upon going home, my friends decided to have a late-night-karaoke at K-1 bar. We checked out Vudu as well. Nice Place. So that was Cebu, ey?
IS THAT ALL? I THOUGHT YOU WERE THERE FOR FOUR DAYS?
Ok. Ok. Day 1 was just the “getting-to-know-the-place” stage. On Day 2 we sailed to Tagbilaran City, Bohol. That was a 2-hour ferry ride from the port of Cebu. Upon our arrival, we had our driver waiting, and a nice cool van to take us to wherever we wanted to go in Bohol. Yes we did everything! We had lunch at the amazing floating restaurant at Loboc River. We went to see the popular Busay Falls and not to mention the Tarsiers that everybody was talking about all these years. We were blocked with ultimate surprises once we got to the chocolaty Chocolate Hills Bohol is known for. We traveled back to the second oldest Church in the Philippines – Baclayon Church and we also ventured towards the Blood Compact Site. 🙂 After that, we checked in to Panglao Regent’s Park – our second hotel. That night we grabbed dinner along Alona Beach at the Lost Horizon. Then we had Red Wine beside our Hotel Pool – we were actually waiting for Marianne’s 20th Birthday! 😛
Day 3 was mainly for Island Hopping. We rented a boat. It was really the MEAT of our vacation because it was on that day that we get to appreciate the beach. It was the view of paradise! We tried to wake up as early as possible in order to see the dolphins. We were so late but thank goodness we had a glimpse of those creatures. We also visited the well-known Balicasag Island and we had our snorkeling there. Hello to Nemo! 🙂 After about two hours, the heat was scorching so we sailed to the Virgin Island. It was so beautiful! – White sand and probably the look of the best summer getaway ever! Apparently we had a ferry to catch so we passed by the Cat Island. Yes. There are a lot of cats in that island. We had a quick lunch along Alona Beach and made ourselves ready to head back to CEBU.
WHAT? CEBU AGAIN?
I hate to break it to you but it was a group decision. Panglao – yes it is a great paradise island, we can’t deny that. But the night life? Goodbye. 🙂 I was sick then so I was up really for anything. We went back to Cebu that afternoon. We organized a surprise birthday party for Marianne – since it was still her birthday. We checked in at our third hotel – Sampaguita Suites at Plaza Garcia. Yup we were near the Magellan’s Cross and also the Sto. Nino de Cebu Church, both historical sites Cebu boasts for. Greenwich was our dinner for the night in the hotel accompanied by Kenny G’s sax instrumentals in my Laptop. It sure felt like were in a new world! The rest of the team went on partying until the morning and I was stuck rejuvenating myself in the hotel. But it was all worth it. The next day I was kind of feeling better compared to the night before. 🙂 Day4, our final day in Cebu! We had breakfast in bed and we passed by the cross. We went straight to SM City Cebu and had our final goodbyes there. We feasted at La Mesa Grill – ooh! Delicious! Then we had our last stop at the Mactan-Cebu International Airport. Well… Back to Iloilo. 😦 Boo-hoo!
The six of us ENJOYED the SUMMER TRIP together! Really! And next year, we will be prepared! Cebu was really something. Memories. Memories! 🙂 Ciao!