Sunday, July 13, 2014

Archery in the Philippines : Kodanda Archery Range, Makati


I’ve been wanting to try archery ever since I saw the Philippine Archery team in Philsports Arena where I used to go for a morning run. The team had started setting up just as I was finishing my last round on the track. It was a quiet scene, no balls being kicked around, no coaches yelling what to do and no loud banters. They raised their bow quietly, maintained their focus and hit the target. As someone who spent their adolescent years playing in a football team where yelling was mandatory as field was enormous, it was appealing. I supposed I’m just being human, drawn to what's different. :P 
Inside Kodanda Archery Range
The accessibility of archery ranges in the city was a struggle for anyone who’s interested to try this sport. I didn’t even know any archers back then. Fortunately - and you’re even luckier if you live near Makati, there’s Kodanda Archery Range at Makati Cinema Square. 

Opened in July 2013, this 7-lane, fully air-conditioned facility inside a mall gives everyone who's at least 7 years old and above a chance to try out archery. The rate of 550 Pesos/hour is inclusive of international-standard equipment, protective gear and basic coaching from expert instructors. You need to pay an additional Php30.00 for the target paper though which you can bring home after, so it sums up to 580 Pesos which is still cheaper compared to other ranges in the city. There is no membership required which is great if you just want to try it at least once. (Php 200.00 is the range rental per person, per hour if you your own gear.) 

Group packages up to 15 people are also available which would be a good bonding activity for peers or families. 
They also have a shop where you can buy bows, arrows and novelty items related to archery.
I had no idea how I'd fair with archery but I've always wanted to try it so I eagerly accepted Kodanda's invite. After a short lesson on how to use the bow, release arrows, proper form,  I was shooting like I was hunting for food. :P There's something addicting about focusing on that yellow target and releasing arrows. It feels therapeutic. :)
Unlike the rest of my companions who hit the bull's eye on their first session,
I completely missed it,  I'll get it next time! :P
Fun Facts!

  • In the 2012 London Olympics, two of the eleven-member Philippine contingent, Mark Javier and Rachel Anne Cabral, are proud archers. 
  • Syd Fraginal, a former Philippine National Team archer who was once a record-holder in the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games is a full-time coach at Kodanda Archery Range. 
  • Kodanda Archery Range now holds Fun Shoot Competition almost every month. 
  • There's a branch of Aida's Chicken on the floor above Kodanda where you can eat after your work-out. :P Aida's a popular chicken joint in Bacolod, my fave! Aida's branch here in Makati serves more dishes but twice as expensive but service and food is good. 
What to Wear?
Rubber shoes or a footwear with a good grip is a must. Slippers not allowed. You don't want to slip on the floor in the middle of shooting an arrow. :P Wear something comfortable. remember, you will be raising one of your elbows most of the time.

Keep in Mind :
Archery requires focus so avoid disruptive noise.   Do not talk in a loud voice while others are shooting.  Do not talk to another archer who prefers to be silent.  Do not disturb people with loud mobile phone ringtones or speaking on the phone.
 
Lessons Offered :
  • Php6,000.00 for ten (10) sessions, one (1) hour per session 
  • Student will be issued a Certificate of Completion after the ten (10) sessions
  • Fees include the use of the archery range, rental of international-standard equipment and protective gear, and target paper.   
  • Dedicated coaching on basic or advanced archery from one of our expert instructors:
  • Syd Nerickzon Fraginal ( former Phil. player, sea games record holder)
  • Ronalyn Alvarez (former NCR Team member, Palarong pambansa winner)
  • Ronna May Alvarez (former member of developmental team of the Phil.)
  • Sessions will be adjusted to the student’s schedule 

Contact Information : 
Reservations and further inquiries, call +63(02)621.9109 and (0932)843.6614, look for May.  
Email address : kodandaarchery@gmail.com 
Facebook page: Kodanda Archery Range

Kodanda Archery Range
Upper Basement, Makati Cinema Square
Makati City, Philippines 
Business Hours : Mon - Sun: 10:30 - 19:30


Sunday, June 29, 2014

Waterfalls Hiking in Camarines Sur

Shower Falls
After settling in our rooms at Eurotel, I met with the rest of our group which included fellow bloggers Shawn (Life Beyond 8-5), Estan (Langyaw), Kara (Traveling Up), our hosts, Wayne, Rustom from Naga Tourism and Albert from NagaX, Naga tourism’s marketing arm. By private van, we traveled 45 minutes to Barangay Curry (pronounced as Koory)  in Pili, Camarines Sur's capital.  
Arrival at the trail head
The jump-off had a wide open space for parking, two spartan restrooms where you can change and a hut where we registered our names. 

After meeting our guides, we set off to a deeper section of the forest. The start of the terrain was flat but a little rocky which is quite manageable. Trees and shrubs surrounded us. Hues of green were strong and instantly, I felt even more cheerful, this is home! 


In about 20 minutes, our feet had to get wet as we crossed our first river. Water was cool and quite tempting to dip in. 


After resting, we proceeded to my favorite part of the hike, this daunting, steep section.  I felt nervous as I ascended, clung to roots and  made sure my feet were planted firmly on a rock or branch before I advanced. Fortunately, everyone in the group got to the top without any problems. 


After another 30 minutes of slow pace hiking  (we took the sweet time to take photos – it was just hard not to with all the trees and  insects we saw), we arrived at the first major fall, Twin Falls. Navigating our bodies on twisted tree branches and rocks, it felt like we walked in a special spot where magical creatures converge. 

Twin Falls with Kara of Traveling Up.com 
We resumed our trek on a slightly muddy trail caused by rain the night before. When it got too slippery, I took off my slippers and walked barefoot. (Note :Wear footwear with straps if you're vising all the falls!) 

The second major waterfall was Slide falls. Its lower part features smooth rocks which one can climb and slide into the water. Its water is also deep enough to allow one to climb a cliff and jump. Here we ate our packed lunch. (Note : No modern facilities or trash bins here so you need to carry all your trash down. :)) 

Slide Falls
15 minutes away on a non-existent trail via the river was Shower Falls, a magnetizing view of water cascading gently from its top. It does look like water coming from a shower head at home except this one’s very tall, could be 50 feet at least.

Shower Falls
A long tree log serves as a viewing deck for those who just want to sit and stare at the falls. It’s also wide enough for you to take a nap just as Kara did. Although I am not much of a waterfalls fan, this one’s quite impressive. I just sat on a rock and stared for majority of the time we were there.  :)

Taking at dip at Shower Falls
Rain threaten to fall from the sky so we packed up and took a different, much, much easier trail going back to the jump-off which is an ideal for those who are not up for a sweaty hike.  When rain poured, we were quite near to the registration hut.

If you want to visit the falls send a message through Choose Pili on Facebook, Choose Pili
or book your adventure with Naga Excursions.

Read more about our waterfalls adventure at Traveling Up - Chasing Waterfalls in Pili, Camarines Sur


Saturday, June 28, 2014

Puerto Galera Series : Mangyan Village, Talipanan

Widely known as one of the beach party destinations close to Manila, I was very amused to see the less popular but beautiful and bucolic side of Puerto Galera - something I missed the previous two times I was here since I didn’t get to explore and all I saw aside from the beach are people flirting and getting drunk. :P Nothing against those who enjoy these social pursuits, I just prefer quiet getaways where I see a lot of green.
Clear waters at Muelle Port

Raise both feet behind your ears if you're like me! :P  

Quiet, slightly remote, this settlement of Iraya Mangyans (Iraya, a sub group of Mangyans in Mindoro) are for visitors with a penchant for culture and meeting people. An enormous hut serves as a weaving area for our Mangyan sisters. The finished products- bracelets, storage bins, etc are sold to stalls a few blocks from the weaving area and would make awesome souvenirs as some takes weeks or months to complete. The people here are generally friendly and don’t mind you clicking away for souvenir shots but out of respect, ask permission first before taking any photos. 


Here, you can have a chat with the weavers. 
Talipanan is also the jump-off to Mt. Malasimbo, which takes roughly 5 hours to summit. 
(Itinerary via Pinoy Mountaineer). From the river, you can also trek for an hour to Talipanan Falls, a one story waterfall with a swimmer friendly basin. Guides can be hired within the community. 


Bridge leading to the rest of the community
To get here, take a tricycle from White beach (300 Pesos, round trip). Better arrange for a round trip as there’s no regular transportation.  Additional info can be read here. No entrance fees needs to be paid so it be great if you can purchase souvenir items from them. 
Souvenir shop showcasing the Iraya Mangyans weaving skills
For  a good grub after, dine at Luca Cucina Italiana located at the end of Talipanan beach, which serves thin crust pizzas (really good!) and al dente, flavorful pastas.

How to get to Puerto Galera? Read here.
Tourist Information Office
Puerto Galera, Oriental Mindoro, Philippines
Contact Numbers : +63 43 287 30 51 / 442 01 82 

Related article on Mangyan Village via Inquirer.Net

This 2 day trip around Puerto Galera was made possible in collaboration with the municipality of Puerto Galera, Mayor Hubbert Dolor and its tourism office headed by Ms. Aileen Bareng. Awesome companions for this trip were fellow bloggers  Melo (Out of Town Blog, thanks for leading the team Melo!), Estan (Langyaw), Kara (Traveling Up), Andre (Philippine Beaches), writers sir Amadis Ma. Guerrero and the jolly guys from Business Mirror. 



Monday, June 9, 2014

Gear : Quantum Osprey Pack

I’ve been using Osprey Quantum for weeks now and I’m excited to share how it went. :) This outdoor pack from the US has been in the industry for 40 years and one that I heard good words about but it was only in 2013 when it was brought to the stores by local retail giant, Primer Group (which also owns all The North Face, Columbia, Mountain Hardware & R.O.X. stores in the Philippines). 
my new adventure buddy Quantum. Color : Fern Green
Osprey’s Quantum is designed for urban and weekend adventures, meaning it has specifications to suit those who intend to use it on and off the trails. It’s for people who switch roles at the blink of an eye, a corporate slave on week days, outdoor junkie on weekends. 

Among its many pleasant specs is its numerous compartments for a laptop, tablet, MP3 players, pens, keys, first aid kit, basically whatever you need to bring. Mine has a capacity of 34 liters which is perfect for work and post-work adventures. I exercise regularly so I seem to be always lugging a lot of stuff all the time.  
On a boat in Puerto Galera 
On days that I train for future hikes/food trips, I have to bring a lot  – personal effects, running/swimming gear, laptop, chargers, etc. Whew. I get an extra work-out carrying it all on my back but what’s great is that I don’t struggle in putting everything in because it has a wide opening and frame which can also be its downside if you’re petite.  I’m only 4’11 so sometimes I feel like the bag’s covering my entire back. 

I’ve also brought it on a trip to Puerto Galera where we went around eco-cultural spots and a lot of boat rides. Me being a little too carefree, meant the bag got wet, thrown around, stepped on, squeezed. It’s going to take more beatings over the next few months when I take it to other adventures but I feel confident it’ll stay with me for a long time. The tag comes with an All Mighty Guarantee and I’m pasting below a quote from their site “ 

“Osprey will repair for any reason, free of charge, any damage or defect in our product – whether it was purchased in 1974 or yesterday. If we are unable to perform a functional repair on your pack, we will happily replace it. We proudly stand behind this guarantee, so much so that it bears the signature of company founder and head designer, Mike Pfotenhauer.”

The guarantee also applies to purchases from official distributors outside the US so make sure sure you check out this link of Osprey distributors before buying.

Here's another closer look on what the bag looks like :  

Here are other Osprey models available in the Philippines : 
Over the next couple of months, I will be bringing it  to backpacking trips or multi-day hikes. You can follow live updates via @jovialwanderer on Twitter and Instagram. :) 

Facebook Page : Osprey Packs Philippines
Website : Osprey Packs

Where to Buy Osprey Packs in the Philippines: 
R.O.X. Bonifacio High Street and will soon be available in other R.O.X. stores - Ayala Cebu, Ayala Centrio, Camp John Hay, MarQuee Mall, and The District North Point.

Check out Osprey features/Reviews by fellow outdoor lovers : 
Kestrel - Gideon Lasco, Pinoy Mountaineer | Dennis Lopez, Trail Goes On
Shuttle 22  - Ferdz Decena, Ironwulf & FerdzDecena.com 

Disclaimer :
Osprey Quantum was provided by the delightful team from Osprey Packs Philippines

Thanks  Melo, Ms. Ruby and the rest of  R.O.X. team! :) 




Wednesday, April 30, 2014

100-Peso Adventure : Makati Park & Garden & Pasig River

I woke up that morning broke, but eager to explore.


With some running gear on, I walked out of the house with a destination in mind -  a park which caught my attention on my home the other day. Checking good, old reliable Google map I took mental notes on how to get there on foot and threw away all worries that I’d get lost. (I’m quite bad with city directions, you know :P)  

Roughly 4 kilometers away from home, after an hour of dodging cars and wandering around like an excited field tripper, I arrived at the main gate of Makati Park & Garden. Opened in April 2000, this serene, well-manicured escape within the city was a project of former mayor Jejomar Binay.
A monument built in honor of one of the Philippines' famous hero, Andres Bonifacio
There are no entrance or parking fees to be paid. The guards, were quite welcoming and got curious when I took out my camera to take photos. It was one of the few things that fit inside my teeny tiny waist pack from Nathan Sports. (Okay, I just need to talk about it a little bit because this is a good brand.  My waist pack’s a discontinued model – Shadow Pak, but it’s still quite reliable, contents don’t bounce off and after moving around, I actually forget I have a mound of essentials strapped near my butt. :P)
Plants near the Bonifacio monument
So the guards, were friendly and even asked where I came from since I had this excited, goofy expression on my face after seeing my immediate surrounding which was even more awesome than I imagined. I was surrounded by trees, flowers and shrubbery. No vandals on walls, clean grounds, friendly street sweepers and best thing of all – no crowd!

They found it funny that I actually just came from a neighbor city but acted like I just arrived in the country. I think that when you stop being excited about things, life becomes heartbreaking-bland so I try to find things that excite me each day, such as this park. :) 
Flowers, I love them alive! 
Perhaps a downside, but I'm not going to throw any judgments  as I don't have enough information about it, are the huge cages of birds in the park. Personally, I prefer  seeing animals in their natural habitat. They look very healthy though, plump actually, the color of their feathers were vibrant and the cages looked clean. 
Stone benches with a good view of the lagoon where you can relax, preferably when the sun's down :P
I ignored the heat and the thirst  that was settling in my throat as the sun pierced through the tree branches. I had a cap on and felt enamored to roam some more. 

Even stone paths allows runners and walkers to be able to circle the park. I perceive it to be around 500 meters per round. :P There's also a bunch of gazebos where small groups can gather. 

Another happy sight for me apart from the plants and enormous trees was the view on top of the amphitheater  Supposedly a venue for events, it can also be used for stairs training if you're planning a hike soon. 

I climbed up, peeped curiously over the edge and was surprised to see... 
(left) 50-meter pool; (right) kiddie pool
Ahh, the turquiose man-made wonders of Makati Aqua Sports Arena (MASA)! :) It's just next door and is open to the public from Tuesday-Sunday, 8 AM-12 noon, then 1 PM-8 PM. Non-Makati residents like me will have to pay a hefty 150 Pesos while fortunate residents only have to pay 50 Pesos (ID required).

There's a 7 Eleven across MASA where I bought some Pocari Sweat (37 Pesos). It was an excellent choice for rehydrating after a long hot walk. After that, I was ready to walk home again. 
Pasig River's one of the views when you take a stroll along JP Rizal Avenue. It's not actually a pretty scene with
the dark water and garbage along the bank.  
To cap off my adventure, I boarded a motorized boat (different from the Pasig River Ferry  service) that transports passengers from Guadalupe to Mandaluyong. I didn't know it existed and only found out about it that morning while I was walking along JP Rizal Street and happened to glance at the water. The boat had a green roof, a color I love so dearly, which is why I was drawn to it. The short ride lasted for barely a minute and cost just 4 Pesos. From Mandaluyong, I hailed a tricycle home (30 Pesos). At 11:00 AM, the heat just became overbearing!
Friendly boatman gamely posing for a souvenir shot :)
This little escapade of mine left me with some change from my 100-Peso budget and though my destination wasn't as exotic or as daring as I wanted it to be, it felt very good to just get out there and see new things. 

Makati Park & Garden
Dr Jose P. Rizal Extension, Makati ‎(across University of Makati)
Open daily until 9:00 PM (forgot what time it opens)
Map here


Notes : 
When walking along JP Rizal Street, walk in the morning and walk with a brave swagger. Standard precautionary measures must be taken. 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Bacolod Series : Reasons to Visit the City of Smiles

Bucolid  side of Negros Occidental.Taken while in a tricycle to Bacolod-Silay International Airport
Mt. Kanlaon, one of the most beautiful volcanoes in the Philippines and a dream outdoor destination of mine, can be found in Negros Island.  If coming from Manila, the most common entry point is via Bacolod City in the province of Negros Occidental where Bacolod-Silay International Airport is.

Unfortunately, the past two attempts to get to the summit were spoiled by either bad weather or a personal event. The sunny side of these unsuccessful attempts is that it has given me the time to scour the city and eventually fall in love with it. 
Lacson Street, a bustling part of the city. Getting inns and hotels on this side is
quite convenient when moving around Bacolod. Taken at the overpass in front of Robinson's Place
Below’s a rundown on why you should visit the City of Smiles, nicknamed as such for its friendly populace:

1. Food!!! 

Fellow foodies, this can very well be the sole reason to hop on a plane to Bacolod.  Cafes serving affordable, moist, yummy cakes, strong cups of coffee and good tea such as Felicia’s (their chocolate cake’s a bestseller!) and Calea are a MUST visit.  For satisfying full meals go to Aboy’s, Sharyn’s Cansi House, 21 and Mushu. Chicken lovers should also pay homage to a local dish called chicken inasal - grilled chicken marinated in calamansi, pepper, vinegar and annatto. Best place to try this is Manokan Country, an entire block of eateries located at the back of SM, North Wing – that side along F.M. Ferrero Street. (Google Map here) Aida’s has friendly, efficient service, airy atmosphere and plenty of tables (and I need not mention that food is just delightful!)

2. Great for both solo or group travelers 
Enjoying fresh coconut at Pana-ad stadium after a morning run :)
Whether you’re craving for a time alone or organizing a trip for the entire fambam, Bacolod will not make you sweat blood or leave you penniless and toiling soil for the rest of  your life.
Travel itineraries and budget tips are posted online by :
Pinoy Adventurista - Bacolod | Journeying James - Budget-Friendly Bacolod

3. Structures –this city showcases a mix of old and modern establishments, all accessible via public transportation.  For a glimpse of Bacolod’s past, visit Negros Museum along Gatuslao Street (I heard the museum cafĂ© also serves good food! :P). 

Within the area is the provincial capitol and the lagoon which is an excellent walking or running area. 750 meters away is the San Sebastian Cathedral built in 1876. For street art, coffee or cold beer, hang-out at the Art District located along Lacson Street.  Note that most of the bars open at 5:00 PM onwards.  


If you’re a sports enthusiast, you can take an Alijis-bound jeep from downtown  to Pana-ad Park & Stadium. They also have a track area and pool open to the public from 7am-5pm (entrance fee at 40 Pesos, swim suit and cap required)/ It’s roughly 30 minutes when taking public transpo as the driver takes numerous stops. Outside Masskara Festival, you can allot two full days when visiting the spots mentioned above.  



For updates on new developments and tourist spots around the city, hit the Like button of SkyscraperCityBacolod on Facebook.  

4.  MassKara Festival – Festival enthusiasts flock the city held every October with a bulk of the celebration on the 3rd week closest to the city’s Charter anniversary – October 19. Its main highlight is the street dance competition along Lacson street where you can witness dancers  in flamboyant costumes and masks.
MassKara Festival's trademark are the colorful masks worn by participants. Photo taken at Pana-ad Park & Stadium 
For updates, check out their Facebook page  or visit 2014 Masskara Festival 2014 Schedule + Updates by Byahilo.com 

5.  Cheap Accommodation – there’s a slew of decent places to sleep in, majority of which are along Lacson Street. Among those I found that offers great deals that’s located along/near Lacson street, have decent wifi connection and aircon rooms are a. K’MAS (a few blocks away from Art District) I stayed here for a night. Rates start at 500 Pesos for airconditioned rooms with cable tv and wifi at the front desk.  (It’s a little outdated but bearable).  B. Go Hotels (a fave!) located at the back of Robinson’s Place and Central City Walk. Book early through their website to get standard rooms as low as 700 Pesos a night. 

Also in a convenient location is L’ Fisher  Ecotel  (starts at 989 Pesos). L’ Fisher Hotel which is right beside it is also popular for business travelers but it costs 3,500-above Pesos a night.

TripAdvisor offers excellent reviews which can help you decide where to stay.  

6.  Easy to reach  & get around – public transportation is easy to find from the airport and around the city. There’s plenty of taxi, tricycles and PUV’s. Asking for directions from people isn’t tricky either.  Dialect is Hiligaynon (Ilonggo) but almost everyone, at least the one’s I talked to could understand  basic Tagalog or English. I also tried to pick up a few words and found these ones very useful :
“Lugar lang” - when going down from the jeep; “Manaog sa –insert destination- (used to answer the driver when asked where you’re going); unsa  - what, asa / dis-a / aha - where; gi-unsa – how; pila – how much?


Public Utility Vehicles all over the city
From Bacolod, you can also visit nearby provinces such as Iloilo (via ferry) and Negros Oriental (via bus, this is where Dumaguete is).

More travel information on a separate post. I’ll post a tweet when it’s up :  Follow me @jovialwanderer

To be posted soon :  
Bacolod Travel Information
How to Get in/out of Bacolod-Silay International Airport
Where to Stay in Bacolod
How to Get to Iloilo from Bacolod | How to Get to Cebu from Bacolod 

Friday, March 21, 2014

La Union : The Sun, Surf and a Happy Place

Having enjoyed a visit to the Circle Hostel's branch in Zambales (blog here), I was ecstatic to accept an invite to check out their new place in La Union. Their new branch, which looks pretty much the same as the one in Zambales is only  200 meters away from a popular surfing spot in Urbiztondo. (Know more about La Union's surfing season here.)

My bloated toes says hello!
One of the happy messages that can be found  painted on blocks aroundThe Circle Hostel
I joined fellow bloggers Aldous Ate the World,  fashion & lifestyle bloggers, Greenspired Sam Coronado, Rhea Bue, Kat Valdez, RD Llarena and my good friend Gay who lives up to her blog name, the Pinay Travel JunkieDeparting Manila on a Friday night was a nightmare due to heavy traffic, but then again, not all adventures are comfortable and you just have to suck it up. :P 
Pure good vibes! Here's the facade of Circle Hostel's La Union branch
After five hours, we finally arrived! It was only 3AM and everyone craved for sleep. Like zombies, we dragged ourselves upstairs to get to the bunk beds.The beds assigned to us were not only comfortable but also had an awesome view of the moon. I could see it clearly, like a round shiny coin in the sky. :)
Good morning indeed! 
When I woke up, I got very curious as to what kind of mattress foam I laid on and I'm happy to share that they're using Uratex, a prominent local manufacturer of foam that prides on its comfort and durability. :P Geek mode on. 

Bunk Area. They have privacy curtains and mosquito nets installed and each bed is provided
beddings and one pillow. 
Geek mode off. 
After a quick light breakfast, we walked towards the beach, crossed the highway and passed through the San Juan Surf School. We were warned by the staff and fellow surfers that waves were wild due to the North Swell (surfer's term for a series of waves that moves from North to South). But since we were all newbies, we didn't really know what we were in for. Ignorance is bliss applied in this case. 
fellow students 
Surfing lessons were at 200 Pesos/hour. I was assigned to a stern instructor who made sure my footing were right and made me repeat the proper stance around 10 times before we went to the water. I could not recall the numerous times I clung for dear life on the surf board while miserably trying to stand up. My core muscles which were built for gorge feasts were of no use and I had to rely on my arms and shoulders which were quite sore after. When the lessons were over, I could only think of one thing, a ginormous delicious meal!
Rafael Oca, The Circle Hostel's social media guy preparing his board
I actually felt more joyful seeing the ice cream man than my stint at surfing :P 
Orange ice lollies from Magnolia
After lunch at  Gefseis,  a Greek restaurant where the servers and owners are uber friendly, Gay, Aldous and I dropped by Moonleaf Tea Shop for some cold treat, fitting for a hot day at the beach. 
My fave, Passion Fruit Green Tea, 25% sweet.
The franchise owners did a great job incorporating a surfer vibe to the interiors.
It's a great place to hang out if you're clamoring for a fresh brew of tea.
Gay and I had to go home in the afternoon so we spent the rest of our stay hanging out with our new found friends and testing the beds and whatever place we could lie down for a quick nap. :P
Sam strumming away at the common area
Here you can read a book on a bench or lie in hammocks
The intimate dining area where it's easy to find someone to chat with. You can also order brewed coffee (50 Pesos/cup) or cold bottled water from the reception.


Swing area where you can rekindle your childhood days at the playground. 


More photos of our La Union weekend, here.


Thanks Aldous, our host Rafa of the Circle Hostel, Lemon for loaning us your surfboards and Moonleaf Tea Shop for the afternoon tea. :) 

Not traveling to La Union? Check out Circle Hostel in Zambales! Post here.

The Circle Hostel
Urbiztondo, La Union | San Felipe, Zambales
Mobile Number : +63 917 8326253
Rates : 350/night for the hammocks, 450/night for the bunk beds
Day Trippers accepted for a lower rate.
Visit their  Website to book.
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