Philippines during wet season - A different story

in #travelfeed5 years ago (edited)

Unexpected trip to Philippines started with an idea let's go somewhere that came to our minds in 3 minutes, then randomly choosing the location and buying plane tickets in 20 minutes for the flight that leaves in less than 4 hours the same day. While Ivan was entering the information to purchase plane ticket, I quickly showered, then we pack our bags in 5 minutes and left the apartment since it take us 2 hours to the airport. The only thing we know right now is we are landing to Clark's airport in Philippines in few hours. Don't know what the city looks like, neither where we are going to sleep that night.

Backstory: the air in Singapore was really unhealthy (and still is) in that period so we decided to escape Singapore for couple of days and searched for a place with low level of pollutants.

The first surprise after landing was the absence of wifi network on the airport.

Okay, that is weird! Let's sit in this Starbucks and book the hotel there.

No wifi in Starbucks either. After 20 minutes walking around the airport we found some open network and book the hotel RedDoorz that looked great in pictures but happen to be dirty and stinky. I started questioning my standards in sense: do they actually consider that to be clean? Because my first impression of the city was: it's very poor, dirty and chaotic place. The traffic was crazy and the taxi driver tricked us in paying more that double for a ride - of course, because we are white tourists full of money.

The normal price for a drive from Clark airport to the Angeles city in Philippines should cost you about 200PHP using Grab. If you prefer not to use Grab, it will cost you around 300 PHP. We paid 500PHP.

After this, we were more careful about the transport prices and refused to drive if they offered us an unreasonable price just because they assumed we are rich tourists - because we are not.

The other morning we decided to travel to the coast nearby. Bus ride was pleasant - enjoying the sceneries and a beautiful green nature. We arrived to a little place Baretto, near the bigger city Olongapo. This area is a part of Subic Bay - an ex American Naval Base, nowdays Subic Bay is a popular touristic place, more for local tourists than for foreign ones.

The rainy season in Philippines lasts from June until the end of October with typhoons in September and October. During that period the coast doesn't look anything like those beautiful photos you could see when you google Philippines.

What surprised me (and made me sad) is the contrast between the most luxurious places designed for tourists and the reality of locals which is completely opposite. Some of them live in shelters without a proper roof or floor, collecting dead fish on the beach, desperately following tourists to sell souvenirs so that they can buy something to eat that day.

I felt so uncomfortable sitting in a bar with a pool and the most magnificent view on the beach, being served by nice and friendly staff, and knowing that 10 meters further away when you exit the hotel there is a complete different story.

What bothered me the most were some other tourists that acted like a real assholes treating staff like their slaves. It is true that having 100$ to spend in one day in Philippines probably makes you the richest person there, but that doesn’t mean that you have a right to act like pretentious human being.

This is a ride in a tricycle - no one really walks in the streets because the roads are covered in water. The one ride costs 7.5PHP per person which is about 0.02$.

I found this bus ticked from Angeles to Olongapo really cool! It is a 1.5 hour ride and it costed 175PHP (3.5$).

This is a cottonfruit, a tropical fruit native in Southeast Asia, we bought from the lady in some of the previous photos. It was delicious!

For the end, enjoy this video and feel the rainy season vibe. You also can check tasty Filipino breakfast we had at super cozy resort Playa Papagayo in Baretto!

Never be a pretentious traveler! :)

All the best,

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Oh wow. It's a good thing you both have a sense of adventure. Not many people can do what you do. Haha. 👍

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Haha you are right! It's really fun most of the times, but sometimes you experience not so nice things. Which is also fine - visiting not so popular places uncovers secrets of different cultures :)

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