It was a romantic February month as I see this romantic scene and the view is giving me an idea where should I propose to my girl. I just want to have kayaking or riding on a rake (balsa) in this river and how romantic could it be doing it with my girl.

The place is called Sallacong (or Brgy. San Mariano) in the town of Bantay, Ilocos Sur. It is a secluded village at located at the banks of the Abra River.

The mountain view blend with the refreshing aquamarine waters of Abra River that truly satisfies everyone's viewing desires to see a beautiful scenery.

This is probably the most intricate architectural masterpiece I have ever seen. Since I am not yet well-traveled, I am saying that "so far" this has to be and I am looking forward for seeing more intricate architecture soon. 

This jaw-dropping dome is taken inside the Ma-Cho temple in San Fernando City, La Union. This is a Chinese temple located at a hill in the said city.

I wonder how they are able to maintain and clean this dome and it is really very detailed.
Like any other towns and cities in the Philippines, the heritage city of Vigan in Ilocos Sur also has traditional way of leading the dead body to it's final destination on Earth - the grave.

On this busy street called the Liberation Boulevard, and near the famed Calle Crisologo, this marching funeral band is the front liner of the march.

They create loud music to this busy street occupying one lane of the road resulting to a heavy and a congested traffic flow.

There is also a majorette that signals the band what to play. With trumpets, bass drums and cymbals, the street is filled with a loud sound grabbing the noise of the vehicles that used to create a traffic sound.

If you happen to be at the strawberry farms of La Trinidad, Benguet, this giant strawberry would be your landmark and proof that you are already entering the premises of Benguet State University's Strawberry farm.

At the strawberry farm of Benguet, you have the ability to pick your own strawberries during harvest season (November to May) but the cost would be double compared to the market price.

The price is more expensive because you are also paying for the experience.
The city of San Fernando, the capital of La Union province is a coastal trading area facing the West Philippine Sea (formerly South China Sea).

After a tiring walking tour arround the city, the sunset just gave me an instant feeling of healing to my aching traveling feet. The sky seemed to open and pour down magic to the sea.

San Fernando, La Union is the regional center of Ilocos and for a busy day from the bustles of the city, it is just a perfect time to be at the hill (Chinese Pagoda) where I am now to view the relaxing sunset.

I only saw it on post cards, now it is a reality. It was a dream come true that the photo I used to see on postcards and elementary history textbooks is now before me.

Being a first timer, I can not say even a single word because I was speechless. I am so much fascinated seeing the ruins and how it served to be a religious center of this place hundred years back. The Mayon Volcano was just so powerful that it has made the church now into a ruin.

Aside from the butanding or the whale shark, the largest fish in the world, Donsol should also be known by its calm and pristine beaches.

Donsol has been dubbed as the "whale shark capital of the world" because of the plenty number of whale sharks that swim to Donsol's waters during peak season. The presence of the gentle giants has turned Donsol as a premium world class tourist destination.

But in case there is no butanding  during your visit, I guess having a fun swimming at the pristine beaches at the bay nearby can suffice the tour.

I just love how peaceful and calm are the waters of Donsol, Sorsogon. No wonder why the whale sharks love going here.

Well who won't be amazed with the glory and majesty of the perfect cone Mayon Volcano? 

I was able to capture Mayon Volcano during sunset with a reflection to the well-watered, well-irrigated wet farms of Ligao City in Albay province, the Philippines. The active volcano is standing majestically while emitting a smoke the seems like the standing authority to all the communities, municipalities, cities and villages that surround it.

I was traversing the long stretch of  national highway in Quezon province until at a certain point, all I had to see was blue.

I have seen this beautiful bay during the Atimonan, Quezon span of our bus.

I really can't resist to capture it in photo because I know I might be able to come back here again sooner. The waters of Lamon Bay is very pristine, so calm and peaceful. Everyone can just be amazed by this work of nature, the work of God.
The city of Vigan has it's own way of making the Halloween fun and exciting and this defines the Raniag Twilight Festival. This festival has the goal to make Halloween season in Vigan bright and happy.

Raniag is an Ilocano term for "light" or "brightness." This festival showcases the creativity of the Ilocanos by creating wonderful Halloween costumes that are not limited to ghosts.

There is also a float parade and every float must have a "glare" or a notable brightness that will enlighten the night of the souls. It happens every last week of October just prior to Halloween.
The man was so courageous lying down a real coffin! It was Halloween in the city of Vigan in Ilocos Sur, Philippines where I was able to capture a zombi-ed body of a fictional name Jaime Ampatuan.

Well in the Philippines, the name "Ampatuan" is always associated to violence because it is a political name in the Islamic province of Maguindanao, Philippines who brought shame in the Philippines in the face of global community when they allegedly forced the killing of more than 50 mediamen and other civilians because of their clamor to stay in political power.

Anyway, the name Jaime Ampatuan is just fictional. This was in fact during the Vigan Twilight Festival happening every Halloween in Vigan City where the creatures of the underworld are the stars of the night. The man was so courageous lying down a real coffin!
Nurse Lakwatsero really never expected that this can be real. It was a very nice innovation. I have eaten at Brother's Grille in San Fernando City, La Union and this was what I have discovered.

Since I am stuck on my computer for almost 24 hours a day (including some scenes in my dreams, lol), I manage many blogs considering that I am a full-time nurse. I got interested with this halo-halo because of my FOOD BLOG. In fact my food blog is about budget eating.

I looked upon the available menu and this caught my attention. It was Halo-halo in a buko and it sounds interesting.

Actually, it was too huge for me to eat that some other clients nearby are talking about me. They might be thinking I can not hear them but I really can hear them that time. there were telling to me that malakas daw akong kumain (with voracious appetite) because of the huge halo-halo.

Well if they think I can eat that all, I really can not. It was too huge. Well, I don't care. I actually do everything I can do to experience something unusual and take note, I am a blogger. I can go everywhere, I can eat anywhere. I can do everything, I can eat anything. Hehe. That is the blogger spirit!
I really loved what I saw in Sariaya, Quezon and I am referring to the old houses and structures preserved. But there was a threat, the call of modernization is rushing to sweep away all the old charm seen by me.

It was a lovely experience to see Sariaya, Quezon's old houses but there really are great threats. This power-line is vying to capture the attention of visitors competing with the old houses.

It was just a sign that progress is trying to erase the old way. Well, this should not be the case. Progress and conservation must go hand in hand. I also noticed that new buildings with modern designs are popping up in between the old houses breaking architectural harmony.
On my way to Cagsawa Ruins, we in fact crossed this river and there is no other way to go there aside from taking this path.

A man with his carabao is also crossing the river. At the back is the majestic Mayon volcano. At the river, I have noticed that the river bed is dark and it inserted to my mind that this could be an effect of lava flows from the volcano that might have flown in this outlet. There are also a lot of volcanic rocks around which gives me the sign that I am just around a Volcanic region.

The scene I have seen gives me a picture of an amazing countryside experience that is beyond compare.
I think I was not just lucky enough to see a hot spring in Tabaco City, Albay because the night came on a rush without giving us the chance to see the destination.

The photo above is our accidental tour guide we have hired from Legazpi City. He is just an ordinary citizen who sells Pili Nuts at the Grand Terminal of Legazpi who just happened to memorize the tourist spots in Albay.

He has been guiding us to see a hot spring in the dark. We were able to reach the destination but of course it is no longer worthwhile because the  place is already very dark and who would enjoy seeing view of total darkness?

We even took the trail of the woods at night and parked our bus near a residential house asking them to arise from sleep and fix their power lines because our bus can not park with the low-lying power lines. It was such a hassled tour. We were just crazy looking for a place that in the long run can not be seen.
I was at the Mayon Resthouse in Tabaco City, Albay and I am very amazed and the view I was seeing was just unbelievable.

I was with a friend and the photo above was just stolen.

The sun is about to set and in a great opportunity, I was able to capture a photo of her in a random position.

It looks great for an amateur point and shooter like me. I really love the sunset and I am still at an elevation leveled with the clouds. Just a little hike and you'll reach the crater of Mayon. At some points, we were actually above the clouds literally.
Nurse Lakwatsero was able to climb halfway the Mayon's crater to the Mayon Resthouse and what I saw at the final destination is a mixed emotion. 

It was amazing since the view of the Mayon Volcano up close was just fulfilling and on the other hand, my heart melted when I saw kids selling bonsai plants for a living. One look at the kids, signs of poverty are evident. They wear dirty shirts and their skin is untidy too. But who am I to judge them because it is the only way they can do to survive.

They sell bonsai plants to tourists for 50 pesos and they keep chasing after us hoping to find their luck to sell their products.

I pray that may God bless them even more and that these children will be able to survive the obstacles in life and have a better life in the future. It is not their fault because they are just children and their are working for their family at a young age. They are out of school. If our government will continue a culture of corruption, I think the future of this child is not so bright and might continue this job for a life time.
Another interesting capability of Benguet province that other places can never have is that the province is capable of hosting a strawberry farm.

I visited the strawberry farm in La Trinidad, Benguet and it is my first time to see a strawberry farm that's why this is a memorable trip. The strawberry farm in Benguet is managed by the Benguet State University. Produces from this farm are being sold and sometimes processed to make new products out of it such as the Strawberry Jam.
I was doing a walking tour in Baguio city until on my way from the Baguio city hall, I saw these three girls well-bonded together. 

They have been chatting for awhile while facing the road and let the jeepneys and other vehicles to pass by.

They are sitting on the steps of a concrete stair leading to the top of a hill where the Baguio city hall is located. The city Hall is close to Baguio Central School where these girls came from.

The city hall of Baguio is located atop a hill so you have to take the several steps to reach the top. The girls just love their place. Well, for a cool city like Baguio, I think everywhere can be a nice place to stay.

Pindangan Ruins serve as the remnant of a once grand church, now just a display - can no longer hold a decent mass. It has been dilapidated and abandoned. It is located at Brgy Parian in the city of San Fernando in La Union.

The sad thing here is that the structure wasn't just ruined, the history itself was also ruined by the people that's why I called it Double Ruins. The people (not all) of La Union doesn't know about this Pindangan Ruins when I asked many of them for a direction.

Even tricycle drivers that regularly ply the city roads also didn't know about it. They are more familiar to Carmelite Monastery, located in the same compound with the Ruins.

So if going here, tell the local driver "Send me to Carmelite Monastery" instead of Pindangan ruins because he might not know about it. The history was also ruined.

The Chinese Pagoda in the city of San Fernando in La Union is a perfect place to view the San Fernando Bay, more so if it is sunset. Aside from being a perfect place to view the sunset, it is also preferred by lovers to be a perfect place to date.

I was able to see the Chinese Pagoda also called the Filipino-Chinese Friendship Park in San Fernando City, La Union in a sunset. It is located atop a hill to an elevation where you can view the San Fernando Bay.

Just a simple insight, the park isn't maintained well. I don't know if the shortcoming comes from our government or the citizens themselves because what I saw was a very dirty park which garbage everywhere and full of vandalism. The sad thing is that, the things written at those walls are words I can hardly swallow :-(

Tell me who is to blame, our government or the people? 
Burnham Lake is a man-made lake located in Baguio City, the Philippines' summer capital. 

The main feature of this lake is actually for boating activities. It is not a huge lake, you can round the lake's perimeter for 15-30 minutes. It was named after Daniel Burnham, an American architect who laid out an urban planning to the city of Baguio.

Around Burnham Lake, there are lots of activities such as biking, a jogging session early in the morning, food tripping, visiting an orchidarium at the western part or simply relax and just enjoy the cool breeze of the city while seeing the man-made lake.
Burnham Park is Baguio's most popular destination for leisure and fun. At the western part of Burnham park in Baguio city is a place where one can have a biking activity where you can rent a bike - single bike, bike in tandem or bike with sidecar. 

There are also bike for little kids. The photo shows me how happy life could be. The boy just rides the bike with innocence in his face, no marks of problems and frustrations. As life goes on, struggles, failures and problems come and go. But as the boy enjoys his biking moments, everyone also deserves to be happy. 

Problems are inevitable and we must deal with it. It should not stop us from dreaming and achieving a goal. It is just a spice of our life. Life is too short and let's enjoy it as long as we are alive like what the boy in bike does.
It was a breathtaking and a bloodcurdling ride going to the town of Cervantes in Ilocos Sur because you have to take the deadly mountain road just to reach the town if taking the Tagudin-Cervantes-Sabangan Road.

It is deadly because almost all parts are situated just directly to the cliff and one thing more, there are falling rocks and land slides. However, the risk of taking this highway is worthwhile as you reach the beautiful and amazing town of Cervantes, Ilocos Sur.

 My trip to this lovely mountain town has a thrill because I reached it via a scooter. It was a ride of approximately 250 kilometers back and forth without anyone to ask for help if there is a trouble along the road because there are no houses and people at the long stretch of the road until you reach the center of the town.