The trip was on a weekend in January 2015. The original plan was to go during the Ati-Atihan festival weekend, but I soon found out after booking my ticket that I got the wrong date–I booked one week ahead of the Ati Atihan celebration! With the booking made, I decided to pursue the trip and to just make the most of it. And I’d say it was a successful one, truly an experience to remember.
This was my itinerary:
Day 0: Arrival in Kalibo late at night (after work)
Day 1: Sampaguita Gardens (AM) | Bakhawan Eco Park (PM) | City exploration (late afternoon)
Day 2: Jawili Falls, Jawili Beach, Agfa Point (AM) | City exploration (PM)
Day 3: Departure to Manila
My goal for the said trip was to simply see new places, gain new experiences, and perhaps meet new people along the way–and to accomplish all these within a limited budget. My set budget was Php5000, not including the airfare.
I stayed in a women’s dorm. Tried new food. Joined a crowd of locals and danced zumba in an open park. Got a face paint. Joined a procession and chanted ‘Hala Bira!’ with the crowd. Met locals and other tourists. Did a lot of walking. And discovered interesting places.
The trip was memorable in that it gave me the right mix of the planned and the unplanned. Some portions were part of a carefully planned itinerary; the others were spontaneous, on-the-spot decisions based on gut-feel and on what felt right at the moment. It was truly an awesome experience.