Cebu airport

Sojourns around the Visayas and Mindanao

At Cebu's Mactan International Airport for my flight to Boracay

At Cebu’s Mactan International Airport for my flight to Boracay

I’ve been basing myself in my home province of Cebu for almost a month, a welcome respite from the hot and humidity that is enveloping Manila. But I’ve been staying more and more in Cebu lately starting December of last year. There’s no better place than home but probably, because of recent assignments, travel possibilities and some struggles with some personal things, I was more in the Visayas and Mindanao region.

But the past few weeks have been quite hectic. From Cebu, I’ve had trips to Bohol, Dumaguete, Siquijor, Davao City then now, I’m in Boracay to cover a rowing event.

Facade of Siquijor town's kumbento

Facade of Siquijor town’s kumbento

I spent less than a day in Siquijor and two nights in Dumaguete. I love these two places. While waiting for my roro trip from Siquijor town back to Dumaguete, I visited the kumbento and this beautiful facade (above) just greeted me! Folksy rendition of the royal escudo, or the Spanish royal coat of arms attest to the royal support in building this building. Just beautiful and it still has traces of the original colors of blue and red!

Dumaguete? It is starting to wake up from its slumber. Life is getting hectic I guess with many new establishments being built. But I still love its small town charms, the languid and slow tedium of life. It has great food places from the filling puto and sikwate at the public market to small cafes and restaurants with interesting offerings. I’m seeing myself visiting this city, just a couple of hours trip by bus and boat from Cebu, more and more.

Mindanao, the Philippine eagle at the breeding center in Davao City

Mindanao, the Philippine eagle at the breeding center in Davao City

Marco Polo Davao organized a blogger tour and I was one of three invited for this activity. It’s great to be back again in Davao and believe it or not, I really had a great time discovering new food places! I had again a taste of the various dishes at Cellar de Oboza and their maja blanca cheesecake was just awesome. Lachi’s really is interesting with their desserts and meals with the, oh so delicious callos making the visit very memorable.

I didn’t dip in the waters of Samal but the food at Paradise was just so great. The resort is an old reliable, being the first resort in the island 27 years ago. But the seafood, the paella, grilled pork was more than enough to sate us. And of course, I had a great stay at the Marco Polo hotel with their new Premier City View suites!

Dragon boats during the Boracay International Dragon Boat Festival 2013

Dragon boats during the Boracay International Dragon Boat Festival 2013

Just days after my Davao City trip and I was on board a flight to Caticlan to cover the Boracay International Dragon Boat Festival 2013! This was what I’ve been busying with for the past few days. But at this time of the year, Boracay is just so hot and humid that it is taking its toll on my sanity. The heat is oppressive that a better way to enjoy this resort island is just to stay indoors and go out late in the afternoon till evening.

Now that the race event has finished, I’m now enjoying some relaxation at Sol Marina Resorts. It’s a bit far from Stations 1-3 but the peace and quite is priceless!

Estan Cabigas is freelance photographer, blogger and writer based in Makati City, the Philippines. A true blue Cebuano, he makes stunning images and meaningful photo stories. His work has been published in local and international publications including National Geographic Magazine, Geo (Germany), Sunday Times Magazine (London) and other publications. He is also a peripatetic traveler and has traveled to all 81 Philippines provinces. I'm open for work, collaborations and inquiries, including hotel, restaurant and site features and reviews.

7 Comments

  1. Jherson Jaya
    April 29, 2013 @ 8:13

    lucky you you got that job – base on my contex ha =) Keep it up…

  2. estancabigas
    April 29, 2013 @ 8:14

    Jherson, thanx 🙂

  3. Micole l Philippine Traveler
    April 29, 2013 @ 22:23

    Haaa! Lachi’s Fan din ako! I love their cheesecake! Glad you are able to visit Davao! Na remember ko din ang Sansrival ng Dumaguete. =) More power sir!

  4. estancabigas
    April 29, 2013 @ 22:23

    thanx Micole 🙂

  5. Edmaration
    May 2, 2013 @ 13:34

    Ayyyy! Never been to Visayas. So many things to see there.

  6. estancabigas
    May 2, 2013 @ 13:41

    plan ka ed 🙂

  7. Verna
    May 12, 2013 @ 15:38

    as usual, estan trademark on your foto of siquijor kumbento’s facade. wonderful, es!

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