Thursday, April 14, 2011

Best Places in the Philippines for Solo Travelers

by: Mhe-anne L. Ojeda

When I became a legal manager in 2006,I have to travel around the Philippines to engage and meet with lawyers. During the first few travels I just isolate myself in a hotel and in the rental car prearranged by my secretary since I dreaded traveling solo. (If you want to know why and some lessons learned when I finally budged into wandering alone, please check Traveling Alone .

After the business, I go home. So it was like adding to the list of places I have been to, but missing out on the best of what the place has to offer because I was too scared to get lost or to get fooled by taxi drivers.

Glad my view has changed!

Thanks to the article I read in Family Circle Magazine issue of August 2005 entitled "Got Guts" by Leigh Anne Jasheway - Bryant . The author suggests 12 life-changing strategies if we really want to experience all that life has to offer. She then quoted Eleanor RooseveltYou gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face”.

One of the 12 tips/suggestions to get much more out of life is "going somewhere by yourself". This was also one of the tasks in the book '2001 Things To Do Before You Die'. And I have checked this task off many times with my unique and very rewarding experience traveling solo around the country.

So, in this month's Blog Carnival, I share with you some of my favorite Philippine destinations that I also think would be great for solo travelers.

1. Cebu

Topping the list is Cebu because I visited it almost ten times alone with the construction of the LDS Cebu Philippines Temple. In each of those visits, I try to combine business with pleasure by visiting at least one tourist spot. There are so many good hotels depending on your budget,resorts that cater to a solo traveler, sightseeing options are varied and easy to go to like Magellan's cross, Fort San Pedro, Tops,Jumalon Butterfly Sanctuary, etc. Surely,Cebu is one of the most developed provinces in the Philippines and very safe to solo travelers. (For more specific details of what you can do solo in Cebu, you may check either the blog entries entitled
Cebu, Destination Close To Heart or Cebu, Trip Down Memory Lane .)

2. Bohol

I visited Bohol thrice but rather long, the first trip being 5 days during a Sandugo festival. This is my favorite place as there are so many various things to do and see in this province known for its beaches and resorts in Panglao Island, the Chocolate Hills, the Philippine Tarsier, dolphins watching, and the floating restaurant in Loboc.I made new friends here while staying at Amarella Resort, doing dolphin watching and dining at the floating restaurant. The only downside in staying at Amarella when you're alone is that you will be paying double. (Please check my earlier blog entry on Bohol's Distinctive Timeless Attractions )

3. Naga
-I've been to Naga a number of times because this city is easily accessible by air and land. It is my province and so I have several road trips here with my family. Solo,I have visited it maybe five times and in all those times my best bet is the CamSur Wakeboarding Complex (CWC). Though I didn't have the guts to try wakeboarding alone, it is good to stay inside the complex since the accommodation rates is almost the same as that of the hotel in Naga with a good chance of watching the Wakeboarding World Championship and bumping with actors and actresses. (Please check my previous blog entry at Camarines Sur, Playground for Water Enthusiast)

4. Cagayan De Oro

Surely it is not fun going white river rafting solo but there are still many things to do while wandering alone in Cagayan de Oro. A visit to the Potol Beach, Malagasag Garden, Divisoria Night Café and Market to have barbecue and seafoods and also the great bargains from the nearby Night Market, Dear Manok for my favorite Buko Halo - Halo and Limketkai shopping center are just some of the reasons why it is fun to roam around this "City of Golden Friendship".

Other destinations I am meaning to include are: Baguio, Laguna, Cavite,Palawan, Batangas and Davao. So next time your company sends you on a business trip on these places, do check out some sights. I assure you, you won't foot in additional bucks but bank in rewarding experiences and fall in love with the beauty of the Philippine Islands!

This is my contribution to April's Blog Carnival with the theme "Traveling Solo" being hosted by Nina Fuentes of Just Wandering.Org

For previous months blog carnivals please check Estan's site's PINOY TRAVEL BLOGGERS BLOG CARNIVAL

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