Exploring Mambukal’s 7 falls

Mambukal Resort in the neighboring municipality of Murcia is probably the most popular day trip destination for those who live in Bacolod.  It’s actually quite old, dating back to 1927, when it first opened its gates to the public.  Originally designed by Kokichi Paul Ishiwata – a Christian Japanese – the resort is now ran by the provincial government.  Because it’s located in at the foothills of Mt. Kanlaon, the area is dotted by hot sulfur springs and waterfalls. Continue reading


“The Ruins” in Talisay, and a detour to Bacolod

“Talisay” is the name of a type of tree, and is also a pretty common place-name in the Philippines.  As far as i know, there are 2 cities and 2 municipalities that are known by this name in Negros Occidental, Cebu, Batangas and Camarines Norte, respectively.  What sets apart the Talisay of Negros Occidental is undoubtedly the remains of the building formerly known as the Mariano Ledesma Lacson Mansion, now referred to as “The Ruins”.  Talisay is adjacent to both Silay and Bacolod and I planned to spend the afternoon viewing The Ruins. Continue reading

Taiwan: Last 24 hours in Taipei

Basically every point in Taipei can be reached by means of the subway, provided that one knows how to read and speak Mandarin.  For someone who does not, making sense of the “helpful” diagrams posted all over the train stations can be downright confusing – even if the place names have their Roman letter equivalents written just below the Chinese characters. Continue reading

Taiwan: Leaving Yilan, Arriving in Taipei

Woke up the next day with an image of somebody – might have been Sam or Pavel – leaving the room and wishing me well.  I was still sleepy enough to not make sense of anything.  Later on, after a few more minutes of dozing off, I realized that my 3 roommates were gone (they’ve taken an early bus going back to Fo Guang Shan Monastery in Kaohsiung) and that I too had to quickly take a shower and pack my stuff for the trip going to Taipei. Continue reading

Preview: Malatan-og Falls

Malatan-og Falls from Liquid Druid on Vimeo.

One of my pleasant discoveries last year was the almost-unknown municipality of Don Salvador Benedicto in Negros Occidental. And within this municipality in the mountains is a majestic 100 ft.-tall waterfall named Malatan-og.

I’ll begin blogging about my Negros Occidental solo trip after I finally wrap up the Taiwan series. Hopefully, I’ll be able to do that before I leave for Myanmar at the end of this month.

Gallery: Fo Guang Shan Main Shrine

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I still haven’t decided on how I’ll present my Taiwan trip in this blog, so for the meantime, I thought I’d share photos to keep you interested.  These are pictures of the Fo Guang Shan Main Shrine in Kaohsiung, a city in southern Taiwan.  I’ve only entered 2 Buddhist temples before this (Fo Guang Shan’s Mabuhay Temple in Manila and the Angkor Wat itself) and so far, each one has been an experience of discovery and learning.  Continue reading

Preview: The Trail to Mt. Iglit

For my 2012 Holy Week trip, I once again joined my HLGG friends on a mountaineering/outreach activity, this time in Occidental Mindoro.  The first phase of the trip was a gift-giving activity of school supplies and flip-flops for Mangyan schoolchildren.  The Mangyan settlement area is located in Sitio Tamisan, and this in turn is located within the much larger Mts. Iglit-Baco National Park.

To get to Sitio Tamisan, we had to endure a 45-minute trek on rolling terrain under the blazing sun.

Continue reading