I have never found sardines in a tin to be a particularly inspiring sight. But being spiraled by hundreds of thousands of them in a three dimensional tornado changed my view of this little fish. I came to Cebu with a plan of four objectives. The first was to visit Moalboal, which has been a … Continue reading 26. SHARK!
I arrived in Jagna having trouble standing up. On my last dive at Balicasag island, I got a little bit excited chasing a school of barracuda down the wall with my camera. I followed them for maybe a minute, finning hard deeper and deeper. At the end of the dive, I was wobbling all over … Continue reading 25. What’s that you say…?
Bohol threatened to blow my budget, so the moment I arrived I went on the hunt for a roof that wasn’t too upmarket. I found a set of quaint looking, two storey nipa huts that my inquiries had assured me were the cheapest option in town. The place was virtually deserted, and with no running … Continue reading 24. Those startled, hairy frogs..
Siquijor is a small island with a spooky heritage. Rumours suggest that spell-making, witchcraft and voodoo were commonly practiced here as recently as a generation ago. The Anthropological Museum in Dumaguete, on the larger neighbouring island of Negros, has plenty of examples of the 'tools' of this trade. The colonial Spanish did not help with … Continue reading 23. A fight between flyweights
Sipalay proved itself to be disappointing. It’s best feature – a 2km sweep of beach – was rough, grey and turbid, and adrift with half of the town’s refuse. I spent one night in a nasty, over-priced kennel of a room, listening to the drunken snoring of my neighbour through the three-ply wall. 250ml of … Continue reading 22. How to make Chicco roll
After a complicated series of flights, taxis, tricycles, buses, ferries and bangkas, I arrived in Mindoro, from El Nido. Puerto Galera, and nearby Sabang, were a hive of activity with travellers all seeking safe haven from the weather, and keen to get underwater. I spent a happy few days swimming and diving by day, and … Continue reading 21. The Pied Piper of Calapan
After a few hours of meditative breathing, trying to recover from the trauma of Manila’s Bureau of Immigration, I flew into Puerto Princesa, Palawan. I checked into a home-stay small enough to have no name, and spent an uncomfortable night trying not to fall through the face-hole of the massage table that they had disguised … Continue reading 20. Weathering the storm
By dodging and weaving mosquitoes I managed to escape Baguio without falling victim to viral plague, but instead lined myself up for that other scourge – the night bus. It carried me in relative comfort to Vigan, and once there dumped me unceremoniously on the side of the road at 2am, half awake and a … Continue reading 19. The threat of vanilla and musk
I realise that I’m at risk of harping on about bus trips. But the truth is that the hours I’ve spent sitting on public transport in SE Asia have been many, and they account for some of my vivid memories of being away. So, as my friend Jack would say, I’ve got a very long … Continue reading 18. Sir Eduardo, el retardo, rides Lizardo
I’ve got a bone to pick with the Lonely Planet. It describes Sagada as a misty mountain town that might be a nice place to curl up with a good book and hot drink by the fire. With this in mind, I arrived in the late afternoon on it’s steep, wet main road with one … Continue reading 17. A bone to pick..