JOSEPH T. BAUTISTA

CALAUIT

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Like Noah’s Ark, the animals were transported from Kenya to the Philippines by boat. On March 4, 1977, MV Salvador delivered 104 African animals to the remote island of Calauit: 15 zebras, 15 giraffes, 18 impalas, 12 bushbacks, 11 elands, 11 gazelles, 12 waterbucks and 10 topis. There are many…

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I knew that in a battle between man vs beast, I – man – would lose. I first set foot on Palaui Island in 1995 as the last leg of our Cagayan adventure. I was looking forward to a few days of rest and recreation on the island after spending…

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Big things come in small packages. I was thinking about this when I finally discovered the “smallest plaza in the world.” It was my fourth time on the island when I first saw this sign on a small piece of lot barely the size of a basketball court with a…

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There’s this one item on display inside theMuseo Diocesano de Malolos in Malolos, Bulacan.  It’s a faded book called Batitismos 1672-1775.  It’s a record of people baptized inside the Malolos church since 1672. It is one of the many discoveries that one will find in Malolos.  The Barasoain Church may…

BONTOC

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The town of Bontoc in Mountain Province does not get much attention as it should. To most travelers, it is simply a jump-off to the more exotic or Instagram-worthy Sagada, Banaue and more recently, Tinglayan. At an elevation of 800 meters above sea level, it is warmer than the rest…

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Paradise in the off-season Like many of the old-time backpackers, I was fortunate to see Boracay when it was still known to few people. Back then, the only mode of transportation was either a flight to Kalibo or a boat to New Washington in Aklan, then a bumpy jeepney ride…

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Gateway to discoveries “You are now leaving the island of Luzon” is what all travelers read when they enter the Matnog Port. “646 KM, Municipality of Matnog” says the small letters at the middle of the welcome arch at the entrance of the port. I haven’t checked what’s written at…

Iloilo

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Hosting several APEC meetings in 2015 is said to be Iloilo’s coming out party. It was one of the only few cities in the Philippines selected to host such events. And Iloilo prepared well to meet the challenge. The 15-kilometer stretch of road from the new international airport in Cabatuan…

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So your kids have finally outgrown riding the colorful horses of Baguio and watching the dolphins of Subic, and you’re thinking where else you can take them where they can do some new adventures while the wifey can do some shopping, and the whole family can have a few lessons…

Banton Island

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There’s a big difference between tourists and travelers. Tourists go to popular destinations, have their pictures taken and then leave. Travelers go to remote destinations to enjoy all the things these places offer, to learn, to experience and to feel the joy of being human in this world. I always…

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