Philippines

My favourite beaches from around the world

Some of my happiest memories from early childhood is when my parents announced we’d be spending the day at the beach. Mom would prepare thickly buttered salami on rye sandwiches; dad would pack up the Oldsmobile. Off we’d drive to Long Sault, a park along the St. Lawrence River near Cornwall, Ontario. The beach was no great shakes, but at the time I thought it was the best place in the world. While my taste in beaches has changed (some might call me a beach snob), I’m still delighted by a great day at the beach. Here are some of my favourite beaches.

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Categories: France, Indonesia, Maldives, Mexico, Philippines, South Africa, Thailand, United States | Tags: , , | 53 Comments

Bizarro Bohol, Philippines: Pythons, Chocolate Hills, and Yoda…

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Say cheese. One of the cheesy displays at Sagbayan Peak, Chocolate Hills—C.Helbig

March 16, 2015 After several days of diving off Bohol’s Pangalao Island, I was hit by a bug. Nothing too nasty but I didn’t feel up to another day of diving. I also didn’t want to “waste” a precious day of our short time in Bohol lying on a lawn chair. So, on a whim, we signed up for a Bohol countryside tour. When it comes to planning our travel excursions, I’m not usually an “on a whim” kind of gal, but I figured an easy day of being chauffeured in an air conditioned minivan might just be the ticket.  Our weird and wacky day seemed to cure what ailed me. Continue reading

Categories: Philippines | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Island Hopping in Coron, Philippines and the Entrance Fee Pirates

Approach to Twin Lagoons, Coron island-hopping tour—C. Helbig

Approach to Twin Lagoons, Coron island-hopping tour—C. Helbig

It was difficult to drag my guys from the deep, dark, and dangerous wreck diving in Coron Bay. But I needed an above water, bright, and safe diversion. Plus, for months now, I had been drooling over Lonely Planet and Google images of hidden bays with turquoise waters surrounding by towering limestone cliffs. This is what I had come to see, and it was only a short boat ride from our scuba diving base at Sangat Island Resort. Off we go on an all day, island-hopping tour to spectacular Coron Island. Watch out for pirates! Continue reading

Categories: Philippines | Tags: , , , | 8 Comments

Wreck Diving in Coron Bay, Philippines

Anemonefish (Clownfish) on the Morazan deck.

Anemonefish (Clownfish) on the Morazan deck.

“Up” I indicated with my finger pointing to the hatch. I think the dive master could read the anxiety in my eyes. We had just passed through two dark cargo holds inside the 200 m long Okikawa Maru. I had felt an eerie thrill floating through the passageways of the WWII Japanese freighter, but now I wanted out. My panic eased as I swam through the hatch and was greeted by sunlight and a deck covered with spectacular corals and anemones (though I still look a little stressed in the photo above). Continue reading

Categories: Activities, Philippines, Scuba Diving/Snorkelling | Tags: , , | 8 Comments

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