Tuesday, December 28, 2010

My 10 Favorite Postcards for 2010

Going freelance since last quarter of 2008, I thought I'll be staying put in 2010. Thank God, fate had other plans as work and circumstances gave me opportunities to move around and make my itchy soles happy.
Boracay Sailboat Sunset
White beach, fiery sunset in Boracay
Boracay beginnings. Business took me to Boracay in January, my first time there, (believe it or not) not being a fan of tourist traps or crowded beaches. Even just once in my lifetime, I'd like to sink my feet in the sand and verify if "powdery" is the apt word to describe it. The beach, blindingly white in the morning and a venue for great sunsets at dusk, amazes; the long stretch of unbridled commerce disturbs.

Banaue BP Ethnic Village Backcountry Backdrop
Banaue Ethnic Village backdrop - a sight for tired city eyes
Banaue for BP.  Our Backpack Photography (BP) workshops gave me a chance to revisit Banaue, to traipse the terrace walls and live in a faithfully-recreated Ifugao hut in a mountain hideaway six kilometers away from the town proper.  The image above is the view from our outside bath, and if it's not inspiring enough to make one take a bath or answer the call or nature despite the cold, I don't know what is.
BP Batanes Basco Pantalan MV Legaspi
Beached ship at the Basco Pier
Batanes for BP.  We had our next workshop in Batanes, a place I won't ever get tired of.  Some familiar spots in Batan have changed, some happily stayed the same. There were some familiar people who were still around, and some who are sorely missed.
Batanes Itbayat Fluffy Clouds Blue Sea Green Hills Grazing Cows
Postcard-pretty Itbayat
Crossing over to Itbayat.  A few extra days on our hands gave me the opportunity to venture to Itbayat, the northwesternmost habitable island. The grass-walled and -ceilinged vernacular huts that preceded the iconic Ivatan stone house were still around in Raele, the scenery even more post-card rustic than in Batan.
La Union - Ma-Cho Temple Beautiful Ceiling Details
Beautiful ceiling details of Ma-Cho Temple in La Union
La Union gamboling.  I've always passed through La Union enroute to Baguio, never stopping long enough to enjoy the place.  An invite from Thunderbird Resorts gave me the excuse to stop and see what the province has to offer -- from an abandoned watch tower to a beautiful Taoist temple.
Lake Sebu - Seloton Foggy Mountain Morning Fishing
Lake Seloton Early Morning Fishing
Lake Sebu for BP. For our third BP trip, we traveled to revisit Lake Sebu in South Cotabato for a more than cursory look at the land of three lakes, seven falls and T'boli dreamweavers. Not to forget, an unforgettable zipline ride over seven falls and a dense forest.
Gumasa - Dramatic Morning Shadows
Gumasa white beach in the early morning light
Beachin' in Gumasa.  Then we're off to the white sands of Gumasa in Glan where the beach is powdery white and at that time of the year, un-crowded.  Touted as the Boracay of the South, I just hope and pray it won't be as touristy and commercial.
Ilocos Norte - Kaangrian Roots and Falls
Kaangrian Falls in Burgos
Northern exposure in Ilocos Norte.  Come September, I joined Lantaw and his La Union workshop students, for some Ilocos northern exposure, perchance to uncover some of the province's hidden wealth.  There's the rugged beauty of Kapurpurawan at dawn and the poetic charm of Kaangrian Falls in Burgos to complete a relaxing, long weekend trip.
Hong Kong Harbor Sunset View from Victoria's Peak
Sunset view at Victoria Harbor
Tagging along in HK.  I wasn't really expecting to venture overseas this year but fate intervened.  A good friend tagged me along to Hong Kong and shopping-averse as I may be, going around, figuring out the transport and trying out the trams, trains, ferries and buses, was a blast. Ditto, visiting the Hong Kong Disneyland.
Samal - Hagimit Leafy Cascade
Beautiful Hagimitan Falls on Samal Island
Samal in December.  A Davao City business engagement enabled me to cross over to Samal Island with no itinerary, no advanced planning, no hurry.  I brought home no more than some ref magnets and photos but I'm all the richer for the experience.

Lagalog thanks: the Philippine Blog Awards for this site's third consecutive finalist finish in the 2010 edition, travel blog category, and a win for Happyfoodies.com in the food and beverage category • Many thanks, too, to my travel buddies and of course to our Creator who makes all these possible.  God bless and more blessings to come in 2011.


Related Posts with Thumbnails