Friday, March 29, 2013

why am i going to myanmar?

around November last year over an internet chat. Ron opened up of planning to go to Myanmar. the conversation was short and actually sounded more like a football game.

Ron: ano game? 

Dong: game. 
Ron: fight? 
Dong: fight! fight!

going to Myanmar was not even on my bucket list but because for quite some time, i've been wanting to travel with the cool tandem travelers Ron and Monette of Fliptravels, saying yes was easy.

as days came, chat room for this trip grew adding Jerome, Robbie and Marky. who immediately booked for the same flight to Yangon. soon after, we convinced Gay and little Luna to join the trip and finally Melo, who confirmed just few weeks before the departure date.

despite being part of Southeast Asian Nations, i knew less about this country. but i am not the first one in the family to go to Myanmar. way back 2008, my mother went there for a quick trip. but still knew very less about the country except for the stupas and the jade jewelries. 

i rarely have a deeper reason to travel. it's usually just because i want to travel. on this particular trip, i simply want to enjoy it with fellow travel bloggers and to see Myanmar.

what i know about Myanmar before the trip:
Aung San Suu Kyi
Military Junta
Ruby and Jade Stones
Hkakabo Razi

what i wanted to see in Myanmar:
Temples of Bagan
Mt. Popa 
Pagodas in Yangon

what i expect to happen in Myanmar:
long fun road trip with other travelers
amazing temple views
to be little Luna's temporary dada

here begins this long eskapo series. escape and explore Myanmar.

Monday, March 25, 2013

lagu towels

summer is here and the roads lead to islands and coastal beaches around the country. every year i would go for a pre-summer beach trip or as one would call it a summer kick-off beach trip. i chose Nagsasa Cove this year to beach camp with friends.
as more and more people hit the beach, the result could be seeing dirty beaches. but more than that is the effect of coastal erosion and unintentionally taking away of sands every time we hit the beach. most of these goes to the drain or attached to the towels.
just in time as Philippine beaches becomes more touristy, Lagu has developed a towel that would repel sand. i got  the chance to test it on this trip and was quite good. since it comes with a large size, i even used it as a sand mat while taking vertical night photos. 
these towels are also allergen free and best yet these are also quick dry. this summer, in partnership with Lagu Towels i'm giving out two of these towels from the contest posted in my Facebook page. the contest was to answer 

"where they are going this summer and why they deserve a Lagu towel?" 

the two winners of Lagu towels goes to the following entries as chosen by Lagu representatives:

I plan  to go in a secluded beach in Pangasinan which I rarely get to do because I'm always hiking in the mountains. I'm dying to take a Lagu towel with me because  it repels sand which help preserve the beauty of the place. I share the same belief with the people behind Lagu I love and enjoy nature and I want more people to enjoy it as well so I do whatever I can to help to reduce my impact to the places I visit.  - Christine Fernandez 

I'm planning on a road trip this summer in Panay Island and spend more time at the beaches of Antique.  The province of Antique is still largely unexplored by tourists, and I haven't seen much of this province featured in travel shows or even in travel blogs. So I thought I'd go and see for myself.

I'd be traveling light so I need a light-weight, quick-drying yet fashionable and luxurious towel like a Lagu Towel.  Its linen blend is perfect for our hot and humid summer---it's cool to the skin.  I love an innovative and well-thought of product like Lagu's designed not only for its function but also for a healthier planet.  Lagu Towel is for worthy eco-citizens like you and me. -Luna Miranda

im also giving three consolation prizes to the following entries, who will each receive one Dispatch mini travel journal and a postcard from Myanmar.

I, Lakbay Diva, hereby solemnly swear upon receiving the Lagu blanket, will do everything I can to help preserve the sands – sands that has decorated our beaches with all its splendor and beauty; sands that has beckoned foreigners and locals alike to bathe in the seas; sands that has brought us close together as one community.

Furthermore, that this summer would be the best summer in my entire life as I will be traipsing in the Top Recommended beaches of Cebu namely: Moalboal, Oslob, Bantayan, Malapascua, and Camotes.

So help me Lagu  - Edwin

I'm planning to spend summer in south Mindanao and Puerto Princesa, Palawan! I'm excited! I think I deserve to have the Lagu towel because I love the beach so much and the scariest idea is for these beaches to be stripped off its beauty (although I don't think using an ordinary sarong would totally scrape the beaches off its sand). But, it would be a great help if the beach towel I use whenever I beach bum is beach-friendly and helps preserve the powdery white (or black in some cases) sand. - Laiza Limpin

I really love to have this Lagu Towel! Because of its features like sand repellent, which is so cool and it fits my needs. I always bring my typical towel whenever I travel but going home is always a problem with that towel because it's so wet and baggy, also it stinks. This coming summer vacation I'll be on Bora, which is my first time. I would love to bring Lagu towel with me and flaunt it with my friends. It's perfect for this getaway and I want the experience to be perfect. I'll be in Benguet also to conquer Bakun Trio, I want to bring Lagu Towel instead of my lame old goodmorning towels which I use after taking a bath. - Mc Pol Androuse Cruz|Weekend Sidetrip 

here are the other entries. thanks for joining and you will still get a Travel Notepadas a token for joining.

I will spend this summer at Ronco Resort Dolphin House on April 1-2 as my 1st team building for year 2013 with my new team mates; new boss. i deserve this towel because I'm working thru the Holy Week since we don't enjoy Philippine Holidays or US Holidays in my department and it's my birthday on MArch 23. I hope that I will get to bring this towel with me on our teambuilding. I'm happiest with my team because four of them are in their respective communities (Victory); I'm also closest with another one who has cancer; she will bring her child with her. I'm really looking forward to this occasion as my way of also building my relationship with my co-workers. - Carla Asperilla 

I have been traveling to Asia and the Philippines since 2008 and I am loving it. This is one of my many wishes that came true.

Underground River is my next dream destination. I hope this time around I am bringing Lagu towel with me to cut the hassle of bringing a used, wet and bad smelling ordinary towel.

This is reason enough that I am worthy of your quick dry, allergen free and sand repellant Lagu towel. :) -
Joie Ilagan 

This will be one busy summer for me.
For now,  I already got confirmed schedules for Puerto Galera early April for our company Outing, a trip to Zambales with family in May, and a Subic business and leisure trip with colleagues. I am still making a final plans for a Sagada Tour with my wife and kids. And I need your Lagu Towel to go with me to all these trips. - Raul (Laur) Bernal 

I would spend my summer in Biri, Northern Samar, me and my friends would go there so see the incredulous "rock formations'  I want a "Lagu Towel" just so i can use it in Biri. :p - Gerald Paramio 

you will receive an email soon for the details of claiming the prizes.

you can buy these towels online through Lagu Towels online shop or check out the list of shops and resorts where you can find these towels.  

Monday, March 4, 2013

majestic nagsasa cove

listening to stories of Mang Ador convinced me that prior to Mt. Pinatubo's eruption in 1991, this cove was already majestic. the expansion of land and the towering Agojo trees just made it more enchanting. 
these mountain range has some of the country's most stunning mountain formations. pointed peaks, rolling hills and the multiple mountain ridges makes it a climbers haven. the kind of place that i can return a hundred times.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

orion hotel manila

for quite a long time, there has not been a decent hotel to Manila's busiest bargain shopping area of Tutuban. thus it has been a concern for one to shop there without getting trapped in the heavy traffic.


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