Camarines Norte, Hotels, Jose Panganiban

Victor Hotel (Jose Panganiban)

Hello guys! I missed you and I missed blogging but I’ve been really busy these past weeks. And I’m only finding my writing/blogging mojo back just now. I hope you all are doing well!

BTW, this post is about this hotel called Victor Hotel where we stayed during our short trip to Jose Panganiban – a town in Camarines Norte province. This would be my second time in Jose Panganiban. The first time we went there was last year during All Souls’ Day, and this time, to pay respect to the remains of Yoy’s aunt, our beloved Tita Iyah.

We weren’t able to see much of the town because of the very reasons why we had to go there anyway. Add to this the fact that travel time took more than 3 hours because of the ongoing road constructions resulting to heavy traffic and some of the roads are still really bad, particularly in the Cam Sur areas.

Here are some snapshots I was able to take when we tried (and failed) to go to the breakwater (sigh!). The breakwater seems to be the favorite spot to hang out for the people in town. We failed because the streets leading there that Yoy remembered from his childhood were either closed or blocked that time.  DSC01948DSC01947DSC01945

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So, there is actually a new tourist inn… I guess we’ll check it out next time.

This (below) is Victor Hotel where we stayed for the night. There are only two hotels in Jose Panganiban, the other one was also featured in my blog last year. DSC01954

The room we shared (there were 5 adults and 1 kid) was spacious enough with two beds (1 double bed and 1 queen bed) and was very basic. The room was clean enough but the bathroom was not very well kept. It was old and smelled of mold or some strong bathroom odor. One more thing, if you need to charge your cellphones, you might find it very challenging since the only electric socket in the room was very nicely hidden under the dressing table. Also, wifi worked great in mobile phones but I was never able to connect using my laptop so I still had to go to a computer shop to send my report. Good thing the shop charged only Php12.00 per hour and the owner was friendly. Actually, I have yet to find an unfriendly soul in J. Panganiban since all the people I encountered were friendly and helpful.

THE ROOM (Sorry for the mess though………..)DSC01936DSC01931DSC01937

THE HALLWAYDSC01934

THE STAIRWELL GOING TO THE SECOND FLOORDSC01935

I’m not showing you the bathroom because it’s not very nice to look at. Trust me. The thing that is better about this hotel compared with the other one (Apolonia Hotel) was that they have running water 24/7.

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Julienne takes a pic next to her Lola Iyah who remains beautiful in our memories…

I hope someday we’ll get to explore the quiet little town of Jose Panganiban, and maybe explore its beautiful islands and beaches too. I’m looking forward to really getting to know the place. Right now, the impression that I have is in the kind and smiling faces of its people. Oh, and the cars and tricycles are overspeeding so when you’re there, better watch out.

Thank you for taking the time to read! =)

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Albay, Places to See

Bee Farm (Camalig, Albay)

Welcome to the Bee Farm in Camalig, Albay! This place is great for sight seeing and relaxing because of all the beautiful flowers all in bloom. Just look at the pictures below.IMG_20190627_152536IMG_20190627_152430

This is the sight that will greet you upon entering the farm. BTW, there is no entrance fee so you can look around all you want and take pictures for free.

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Love this red tractor, it gives the place a sorta Farmville feels =)

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I’m not very happy about the fact that I left my trusted Sony camera at the hotel and left with no other choice but to take photos with my 0+ cellphone instead. Now, this phone of mine doesn’t have a very good camera so there was like a cloud hanging over my head as I contemplated this dilemma. Anyway, blogging must go on and this is the best I can do for now.IMG_20190627_153226IMG_20190627_153300

The flowers are amazing clouds of pinks, purples and whites all around us.IMG_20190627_153438

There are fruit bearing trees too, like these avocado and calamansi trees.

 

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Thank you Caressa for taking my photo =)

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These bees are about as small as flies (langaw) and they won’t bother you any, for as long as you don’t bother them, maybe.

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That’s about it, our short stop at the Bee Farm in Camalig, Albay. Hope you liked it and hope you’ll go see it for yourselves. Till our next trip, bye! ❤

Naga City, Places to See, Resorts

Panicuason Hot Spring & Adventure Park

Hello everyone!

Summer is here again. There’s no escaping the heat. They said we are experiencing the El Nino phenomenon right now, and there was also the water shortage in Metro Manila which was all over the news a few weeks ago. Yes, it’s summer time, indeed. Summer heat may be aggravating but with it comes the excitement of adventures to come and dreaming about trips that we may or may not actually take but enjoyed planning for anyway haha.

So, my first summer adventure was just within the city, we went to Panicuason Hot Spring Resort and Adventure Park. Everyone in Naga probably has seen this place before, it’s the main go-to destination. Even I have been here before.DSC01640DSC01652

The resort is located at the foot of Mount Isarog and if you are the nature lover type, you will most certainly like it.DSC01659DSC01657DSC01648

We had fun in their hot and cold spring pools. The temperature in the kiddie pool was just right (not too hot and not too cold like the other pools) so I lingered there even though it was pretty crowded. IMG_9656IMG_9648

The most fun part though was our adventure uphill to see the infinity pool. We did not expect that there would be that many steps. The best thing about it though was the view (and the exercise!).IMG_9613IMG_9619

A lot more walking than we signed up for…………DSC01675

Across the fields, we went….DSC01676 DSC01677

Only to find that the infinity pool was being cleaned and we will not be able to swim. Darn it!DSC01683

The view was still nice though, so we took more pictures like normal people.thisIMG_9643DSC01689

In the canteen, they also sell organic produce and products. Unfortunately, we forgot to buy some to take home.

This trip was a nice way to kick off our summer. I must admit that if it weren’t for that uphill hike, our outing would be kind of bland and ordinary. So, if you visit Panicuason Hot Spring Resort, make sure you’re up for a hike to the top of the hill where their infinity pool is.

Entrance Fee: Adult – Php200.00, Kids – Php160.00

Entrance Fee to the Infinity pool: Php50.00 (additional)

 

 

Naga City, Places to See

Naga City Ecology Park

I’ve Google searched this park a few times before and I’ve read some Trip Advisor reviewers say that Naga City Ecology Park (located in Barangay San Felipe) was mediocre, “so-so,” not well-maintained and not even worth the Php20.00 entrance fee. However, I beg to disagree because our trip was worth it.

I admit those unsatisfied reviews and the lack of pictures on the internet were the reasons why it took me so long to visit the park. We went there just this morning though and I am glad to learn that we have a beautiful place like this in Naga City.DSC01614DSC01558

As I noticed that there are not a lot of features and blog posts on Naga City Ecopark online, I am now going to share what awaits you, what you can expect when you visit and the things to see and do. Let’s go!

Take a relaxing walk while enjoying Mother Nature.

Discover the different kinds of trees, plants and flowers… 

Even some fruits like this unripe chico and these curious berries (which are not edible BTW).

Explore the maze.

People seem to think that the maze is the main attraction of the ecopark but for me, this place has more to offer than just the maze. It was a dry spell when we visited this morning so it was not very green as I would have liked it to be. Looking at my photos, you cannot even tell that it’s a maze.

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Visit the Topiary Garden

The Topiary Garden was where I felt that the short trip was worth it. It was well-kept, clean and as you can see, well-manicured trees!

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Flowers are everywhere in the Topiary Garden.DSC01584DSC01582

Let your kids enjoy in the Graceland Ecopark Playground.DSC01513

Visit Ellen White Garden (where all the flowers are white)

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Find Inner Peace in Hardin ni InaDSC01589

Visit Jose Rizal Mini Eco Park

You have to kinda lower your expectations though and maybe you should save this one for last because it was not well-maintained and not much to see.

Over-all, Naga City Eco Park is a great place to visit in my opinion because there is no other place like this in Naga City. It is a great place to commune with nature and enjoy its beauty.

A VERY VERY IMPORTANT reminder though, please clean up after yourselves. Let’s not throw away trash anywhere around the park.

Till next post! Bye!

Naga City, Where to Eat

Annyeong Samgyupsal

Annyeonghaseyo yeoreobun!

Hello everyone! It’s me again, and I would like to take you on yet another food trip here in Naga City, to another Korean resto along Magsaysay Avenue (infront of Villa Caceres Hotel) that offers unlimited Korean barbeque for Php299.00 – it is called Annyeong Samgyupsal. So what are we waiting for? Let’s eat!IMG_20190314_130725

Samgyeopsal or Korean barbeque may be one of my most favourite Korean dishes. It’s right up there with Korean Seafood pancake, which I love oh so much, by the way. So when we had a meeting and what might be considered as a “company lunch” at Annyeong Samgyupsal, I did not pass up on the opportunity to try it out.IMG_20190313_140056

I found the ambiance to be a bit better than in Cjzave because Annyeong has a bigger space, the air conditioning is better and they have suctions for the smoke coming from the grill. I noticed it being a big hit with the teenagers, probably because of the nonstop K-pop music blaring from the speakers and the way the resto tried to imbibe everything Korean in their design to give their customers an awesome dining experience. Jeongmal daebak!IMG_20190314_135457

Let’s talk about the food. Korean food is always good. I admit some restaurants do it better than others but if it’s Korean food on the table, especially grilled pork belly, fresh lettuce, various side dishes and samjang (fermented soy bean paste), it’s always good, right? I’m sure K-food lovers out there would agree.IMG_20190313_135201

The barbeque was superb because the meat was very fresh.IMG_20190313_135325

It went really well with the equally fresh lettuce greens and pickled cucumbers. I also found the baby potatoes side dish really tasty. Their kimchi was the best one I have had so far, probably because it was fresh kimchi and not at all the fermented kind (which I find too tart). I found it delicious, crunchy and packed with just the right hint of spiciness. All that food was downed with bottomless pitchers of refreshingly cold cucumber lemonade.  IMG_20190313_135045

I just don’t know how much I love the grilling part though. At some point, it would feel more like a race against time, followed by overcooked and burnt meats. Can’t help but think how much nicer it would be if these restos had grilling services as well.IMG_20190313_135428

They also have flavoured or marinated pork, beef and chicken. All the meats have to be ordered from the attentive waiters while the side dishes were placed near the liquor bar where you can get as much as you like.IMG_20190314_135144

 

Until our next food adventure. Annyeong!

Naga City, Where to Eat

Wings N’ Things

A few weeks ago, we happened to try the new chicken place in SM City Naga – Wings N’ Things! As I love chicken wings, I was really game to try what they have on offer. The place is always packed and I remember trying a couple of times to eat there (with my family) but we just couldn’t get a table. So, that day was our lucky day.IMG_20190130_131246

Cutting right to the chase, we ordered the Grand Slam meal (Php 768.00) which is good for four persons. There were only three of us though, and I eat like a bird, but what the heck. IMG_20190130_131457

That was a lot of chicken wings and chicken fingers! And we got to choose different kinds of sauces. My fave was Garlic Parmesan and Honey Barbeque. We also needed to put our plastic gloves on because things got messy pretty fast.IMG_20190130_120419

Grand Slam came with three cups of rice, four glasses of iced tea and a serving of fries with gooey cheese on top.

I’m actually getting a little hungry as I’m writing this, remembering the yummy taste.IMG_20190130_120921

The ambiance of the place was nice, pretty Instagrammable. It is also cool because SM has centralized air conditioning anyway so it was comfortable.

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Hope you guys enjoyed that, and sorry if you got a little hungry too! Till the next post! Bye!

 

Naga City, Where to Eat

Aling Cely’s Kinalasan

As they say around here, “Another day, another bowl of kinalas.”

Yep, no such thing. Made that one up just now haha. Lately, I’ve been struggling for lack of better words and then there’s lack of energy left after doing other stuff (like my day job). Thing is, I have another kinalas story to tell because, well, I live in Naga anyway where it is hands down the most famous delicacy.

This time, we tried the locally famous Aling Cely’s Kinalasan in Dimasalang St, Brgy. Sta. Cruz, Naga City, it is located very near Naga Metropolitan Cathedral. The place is very simple and basic, just like every other local eatery, but people are drawn like moths to the flame.IMG_20190302_225001

People come to Cely’s for their famous kinalas, of course. For those who are not familiar with this local delicacy, that is what Bicolanos call this bowl of goodness. It is a noodle dish with thick rich broth, pork or beef, topped with onion chives and boiled egg (by request). For a more detailed description, you can read my previous post on kinalas.IMG_20190302_224132

There are also those who prefer to eat Loglog (just noodles and broth, no meat and eggs). It costs less and parents often order this for their small kids. IMG_20190302_223931

When Naguenos think of this dish, they almost always think of Cely’s Kinalasan. Yoy said it is because many students frequently eat there as it is close to UNC and Universidad de Sta Isabel. Even he himself frequently ate the dish at Cely’s along with his closest friends so he’s got a lot of good memories associated with the place. He always ate kinalas paired with baduya (fried bananas).IMG_20190302_224630

Julienne herself has become partial to eating kinalas. The Sorsoganon in me though prefers to eat stuff like a lot of dried fish, dried squid, mud crabs and balaw (fermented shrimp). So, kinalas is not my all-time favorite, but it is a yummy Nagueno delicacy that is a must-try when in Bicol, particularly in Naga City.

By the way, if you notice, sometimes the quality of my photos are different with every post. When my photos are really nice and clear, it means I used my digital camera but when the pictures are somewhat pixelated like in this post, it’s because I used my phone to take the photos.

Thank you for reading! See you again soon! ❤