2016: Dawn of Grit 3.0

“If travel has momentum and wants to stay in motion, then adventure has the gravitational pull of a black hole. The more you do it, the more you find a way to keep doing it.” – Josh Gates

After I went to South Korea last November, I was really stoked to blog my experience because it entails all nothing but sort of first time. But nah, I had to control myself until this month comes. And finally, the right time has arrived to write this last version (3.0) of my project. A project which has all started by booking a hike last December 2015 in Mt. Maculot and the following months had just been so crazy. Read: Dawn of Grit 1.0 ; Dawn of Grit 2.0

To tell you honestly, I’ve never imagined that I would make these things possible. I just simply aimed that I wanted to travel or have an adventure in every month of 2016. And guess what? I almost did (11/12), except for October because I really had to rest – financially and physically. (lol)

And below were my final blasts this year – Hiking Mt. Ayaas, South Korea Autumn Experience, and South Cebu Adventure.

Sept 11, 2016 – Hiking Mt. Ayaas, Rodriguez, Rizal 

Mt. Ayaas was probably one of the most challenging hikes I did this year. It has very long trail, and the bad weather were factors to its difficulty because of the typhoon approaching in the country that time. There were times that we had to stop en route because of the flood and heavy rains. But still, we’re fortunate that we saw some clearing on the summit.

Our plan to hike Mt. Sipit Ulang after Ayaas was not pursued due to flooding in the trail. I was really looking forward then because of it’s rock formation on the summit. Perhaps, I can come back next year?

Nov 4, 2016 – Busan, South Korea Experience

South Korea has been one of my dream destinations and experiencing Busan gave me so much reasons to love the country even more. Busan is the second largest city in Korea, and its subway lines (metro) have door-to-door service to some of its popular tourist attractions; which will make your trip even more easier. I really know nothing about Busan, until one of my friends told me that it’s like a city  girded with forests, mountains and seas. After hearing those words, I even got more curious because I’m a nature lover and I even prefer that kind of travel than having simple city tour.

Truth be told, this travel had given me a lot of first times – to experience autumn season, to travel solo outside the country, to hike internationally and others. And I wouldn’t have seen the best of the city without the great accommodation of my expatriate friend and tourism ambassador (lol) of Busan, Kuya Argo. In just 4D3N I had been to 18 destinations including 3 mountains, known beaches like Haeundae and Gwangalli Beach and other famous temples like Beomeosa shrine which was founded in the ancient time.

Travelling outside the country alone has been one of my buckelists. They always say that it’s very liberating and indeed, its true. There are a lot of reasons why you should too – at least once in your life. It opens you to a lot of opportunities – personal growth, meeting new people, and marveling with other cultures. And it teaches us some realization that, sometimes in our life, we really have to get out of the box to understand how big the world is.

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Dec. 11. 2016 – South Cebu Adventure

It has been 3 years since my last visit in Cebu and I was really excited that I was able to bring my feet in the Queen City of the South again – but now, in a more adrenaline-fueled adventure.

We only had 3D2N stay in South Cebu, and exploring the province on a very limited time will not allow you to see the other nearby tourists spots. I was so eager to hike Osmeña Peak and see the other falls in Samboan but unfortunately, we ran out of time. One of the challenges we encountered was in terms of logistics. Though there are buses that pass along the highway, other spots like falls are not that accessible. You really had to bargain like riding a habal habal to get into the place.

Despite of the challenges, we’d still able to make and enjoy the main courses of our itinerary like whale shark (butanding) watching, beach-bumming in Sumilon Island, Tumalog Falls and doing the highlight of our trip and best adventure I had thus far, – canyoneering. We stayed in Lambug Beach Homestay in Badian on the same day after Oslob. It is a wide sand beach which is perfect for sunset viewing.

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Canyoneering is travelling in canyons using a variety of techniques that may include other outdoor activities such as walking, scrambling, climbing, jumping, abseiling (rappelling), and swimming (source wiki.). The package that we got was 1500 pesos, that already includes lunch, safety gears and 2 guides. The original plan was at least to  finish the activity in 4 hours then afterwards, to hike Osmeña Peak. But fortunately, (unfortunately) we had a blast and enjoyed the activity. We finished it in 7 hours (lol) because we jumped all the possible cliffs we can jump in the Kanlaob River (canyons). A big thanks to our jolly guides, Kuya Nino(09327296240/09066850302)and James, who encouraged us to enjoy the activity (but still with safety).

I was really looking forward to jump the highest cliff allowed in the second main falls(50ft) but sadly, it’s already prohibited because of the rope in the water that can cause harm. Nevertheless, still proud of myself that I was able to do the highest jump allowed in Kawasan (45ft.) It’s really not that easy, there were times that I hesitated doing it but sometimes, it really take some few seconds of insane courage to do the things you really want to conquer.

 I was really fascinated by the majesty of Kawasan Falls, but I don’t just get the idea of commercializing the place. I know we travel to enjoy the moment and play with nature, but I think we should always do it – responsibly.

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