Feeling at home at Alona KatChaJo Inn (hotel review)

When I planned my trip to Bohol, I knew overspending would be a possibility since I would be going solo. Accommodations usually take up a big chunk of my estimated budget, so I had to be careful of the hotels I pick. I wanted one that was affordable, but would have the basics I need for a comfortable stay, and that’s how I stumbled upon Alona KatChaJo Inn.

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Bohol, Day 3: Everybody hurts sometimes

(This is going to be a long one, so bear with me. Oh, here’s Day 1 and Day 2, in case you missed them.)

On my third day, I woke up fully aware that I could take it easy since I had no concrete plans for any tours. My agenda simply involved spending some time at the beach before checking out and transferring to my hotel in Tagbilaran. After a filling breakfast of bacon, eggs, and toast, I set off on foot (dry bag in tow) towards Alona Beach.

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Bohol, Day 2: Singing to an ocean, I can hear the ocean’s roar

(If you haven’t read Day 1, here you go.)

On my second day, I got up at 5 to get ready for my dolphin watching/island hopping tour. I had to skip breakfast since my pick-up arrives about the same time they serve it. I just stuck a few crackers into my bag to have something to eat in case I get hungry during the tour. At precisely 6 AM, a tricycle arrived to take me to Alona Beach, the jump-off point for the tour.

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Bohol, Day 1: The hills are alive

Growing up, I was bombarded in school by books showing off photos of tiny bug-eyed primates clinging to branches with their tiny little hands, and hills that supposedly imitate Hershey’s Kisses in the summer. It piqued my interest enough to harbor a secret desire to see these things myself, and it didn’t help that I was constantly being reminded by Instagram that people were enjoying these attractions and I wasn’t. Having to constantly live on a budget restricts me from covering as much ground as possible, travel-wise, so when another Cebu Pacific Seat Sale came around, I immediately hit “Search” on Manila-Tagbilaran flights and booked a four-day trip.

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Davao, Night 3: Hotel Tropika (hotel review)

(Finally, the last of my Davao updates. Thanks for bearing with me.)

This is the first hotel we actually booked, when only two of us were confirmed for Davao. Again, I only learned about this on Agoda. The photos looked good, so we went ahead and booked it. It’s slightly more expensive than our other hotels, but we were prepared for it. We wanted a great hotel with a pool so we can relax on our last day, and Hotel Tropika is rated as one of the best hotels in Davao on Tripadvisor, Agoda, and Booking.com.

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Davao, Night 2: Camp Holiday Resort (hotel review)

Day 2 of our Davao trip brought us to Samal Island.  After paying a visit to a couple of beaches and waterfalls where we didn’t swim, as well as a beach where we did swim and partake on some finger-lickin’ chicken, we checked into Camp Holiday Resort, which we had booked before we left Manila.

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Davao, Night 1: Pacific Palm Suites (hotel review)

On our first day in Davao, we stayed at a small accommodation called Pacific Palm Suites. According to Agoda, Pacific is affordable and accessible, two of the things that were important to us because we were doing this trip on a budget. Looking at online photos, the place seemed nice too, and reviews were generally positive, plus it came with breakfast, so we agreed to book a night’s stay.

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A serendipitous experience at Villa Estrella Resort Hotel (hotel review)

(Okay, so when I was looking through my travel photos, I realized that I hadn’t reviewed the hotel a companion and I stayed at during last year’s trip to La Union, so pardon me while I put off the Davao hotel posts for another day and tackle this one first.)

First of all, let me just say, when traveling somewhere, I make it a point to do a bit of research on the place where I’m going so I don’t look like a sitting duck when I get there. But excitement caused one of the biggest oversights I’ve ever made as a traveler. I was so looking forward to trying out surfing again that I overlooked an important detail while searching for a place to stay: the location. Yup. Travel 101, right? Stupid, stupid me.

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From scratch: Chicken and mushroom tomato alfredo pasta

(After those long travel posts, I thought I’d change it up with a food post this time. I’ll post my review of the hotels we stayed at in Davao soon, don’t worry.)

Tomato Alfredo pasta is perfect for those who like the tangy flavor of tomato and the richness of cream. I’d never tried making it before, so I decided to give it a shot one afternoon for lunch over Christmas break.

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Rinse. Repeat.