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  1. #26
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    Surin, Phnom Rung

    Quote Originally Posted by katie23 View Post
    @Davis: I'm researching for a backpacking trip later this year. Entry point Bangkok, exit HCMC. I came across this forum when I was searching for info on how to cross the Kap Cheong border to Cambodia (I posted a question in the Cambodia forum - if you have info which will help, it will be much appreciated). I plan to enter through BKK (have gone to BKK & Ayutthaya in separate trips) so I'm familiar with the BKK area. From BKK, I will go to the Mae Sot/Myawaddy border & explore the border town. I don't need a visa for Myanmar since MM lifted its visa restrictions for Filipinos effective 04 Jan this year. Then from Mae Sot, I plan to travel east to Surin, then cross border to Cambodia. In Siem Reap, I'll meet with friends (fellow Pinoys) and we'll be travelling together until we exit through Ho Chi Minh City. I'm from Laguna. Whereabouts do you live?

    @danno: The travel times that I quoted is by public transport. I don't have a car and always travel by bus, so those are the travel times that I know. If you have a car or driver, then of course, travel will be shorter.
    Katie23, Near Surin/Burriam is Thailand's best preserved ancient temple complex Phnom Rung. It will only take a couple of hours to tour. It's on top of a large plateau and offers some nice views of the surrounding area.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by CalEden View Post
    Katie23, Near Surin/Burriam is Thailand's best preserved ancient temple complex Phnom Rung. It will only take a couple of hours to tour. It's on top of a large plateau and offers some nice views of the surrounding area.
    @CalEden: I don't know if I will be able to tour around Surin/Buriram, since I might just spend O/N there from a long bus travel, and I plan to get a guesthouse near the city center. Is Phnom Rung near the center of Surin (walk or short tuktuk ride), or do I have to ride a bus for it? I won't have a bike/motorbike/car, and will be travelling cheaply. I'm a working-class Asian girl and not a rich farang. With my mixed heritage, I can pass for local in any SEA country, so I don't get harassed by the natives. I don't take many pics but maybe my legs have been featured in some random guy's vacation pics, as I tend to wear shorts. But anyway, thanks for the tip abt PR and I'll see if I can squeeze in a tour as it sounds interesting.

    @November Rain: I'll see what I can do re: a pic thread. How does one post pics here? Simple upload or do I have to use a pic hosting site like photobucket? Is there a maximum file size for the pics? Since I'm a girl, I don't take pics of other girls' legs or bums. lol I can include my legs in shorts, if anyone is interested.. haha... But now that I know that leg or bum pics are popular here, I'll take note of it and try to include some in my next trip.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by katie23
    How does one post pics here?
    There's a tutorial how to host them here

    https://teakdoor.com/how-to-use-stuff...with-pics.html

    A couple of other tutorials in that part of the newbie section (bottom of the board as you scroll down), too. I don't use photobucket, but it is a pain in the proverbial uploading them to the gallery on here, so you may prefer to use photobucket yourself.



    Quote Originally Posted by katie23
    Since I'm a girl, I don't take pics of other girls' legs or bums
    Snap on both. The blokes tend to forgive us that, if our pics and narrative are interesting enough.



    Quote Originally Posted by katie23
    lol I can include my legs in shorts, if anyone is interested..
    I'm sure they would be, but the present female member who posts her own body selfies everywhere might get jealous...



    Quote Originally Posted by katie23
    But now that I know that leg or bum pics are popular here, I'll take note of it and try to include some in my next trip.
    I'm sure that would be appreciated

    If you can get round the photo thing, I look forward to your threads .

  4. #29
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    Hey, Katie and Davis,

    Any thoughts on Taal Volcano? is it worth a day trip from Manila?

    thanks again for the help!

  5. #30
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    ^It's pretty neat. It's not real far from where both Katie and I live; I go up to Tagayty for the day every now and again. Tagayty is a pretty neat little city up in the mountains and the views down to Taal volcano and lakes is spectacular. It's a good day trip.

  6. #31
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    great, thanks!

  7. #32
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    Another one for Davis and Katie…..any other trips like Taal you would recommend? I have about 8 days (plus 2 travel days) in the Philippines - was thinking 4-5 in Manila doing day trips (Corridgor, Taal, and another day with the cemetery, old spanish section, etc), and 3-4 on Borocay. Don't really need to do the beach, just have heard a lot of great things about Borocay to want to check it out.If other great sightseeing stuff could easily be convinced to skip the beach (I can pop up to Phuket from where I live in Malaysia pretty easily).


    many thanks again for the advice - I'll owe both of you a beer if we ever meet up!

  8. #33
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    I haven't been to Boracay in years, and it's much more built up now. But I think that would make a nice change of pace for a few days. You've pretty much got the Manila area covered. Let's see what Katie has to say if she pops up. But, check the weather down there - it's freezing here.

  9. #34
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    If you like touring university campuses, there's a UP (University of the Philippines) campus in Diliman, Quezon City, which is in north Metro Manila. There's also one in the south, near my area, which is UPLB (more provincial & scenic). Both are beautiful campuses, IMO. But then, I'm biased, since I'm an alumna. lol If you're into seeing coeds in shorts, you'll see them there. lol (This is just based on what I've seen/read from the guys in other pic threads).

    If you're the mountaineering type, you can hike up Taal Volcano if it's not acting up during that time. You can hire a boat to get you to the volcano. There are also horses for hire if you don't want to hike. Tagaytay should be nice & breezy in late Jan or early Feb. Boracay is a good choice, though it might be too cold for the beach right now. But if you're used to winter, then you should be fine.

    I'm out of ideas for tonight. I'm getting frustrated with loading the pixxie thingy. I was a member of another forum & it's easier to load pics there. With my slow connection and impatience tonight, it's just Grrrr....

    Re: a meet-up, that would be great, I think. If Davis is okay, then I'm cool with it. When I visited KL, I met up with a friend from that other forum and we had lunch together. We met up in the Central Train station, I was toured in Chinatown, and we ended up in Central Market amongst the souvenirs.

    @Davis - hey, if we will meet up with Danno, I would prefer Alabang, specifically Festival mall. It's easy for me to commute there. (You mentioned going to Alabang in another thread.) I could meet you guys for a bit, then leave you to your mantalk. Then I'll do my errands and shopping. Two birds with one stone - I've been looking for an excuse to go to Festival mall. But I can only do it on a weekend, as I work weekdays. (Aside: it's a bit too cold for my tastes now - my tropical bones are chilled here in Laguna. Must be cold up there too in Lipa.)

    @November Rain - this pic posting is more challenging than I thought. I uploaded the pics to photobucket, and I tried to link one pic, but it didn't show up. Grrr....

    Can anyone tell me, in simple non-geeky terms, how to link a file from a hosting site like photobucket? I'm not the most techie of peeps. The tutorial by KM is one that uses the TD gallery (on the 1st page). I'm too tired to read the other pages on that thread, given my slow connection. Thanks a bunch.

  10. #35
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    Now I've thought of more options:

    If you're in the north, you can go to
    Vigan, Ilocos Sur (old historical town, UNESCO site)
    Paoay Church in Paoay, Ilocos Norte
    Don Mariano Marcos State University (if you like unis)
    Angeles City (girlie bars), SM mall in Angeles
    Central Luzon State University (CLSU), Luisita Mall in Tarlac
    Subic in Zambales
    Corregidor island (day tour by ferry from Manila)

    If you're going to be Manila-based, these are good for day trips:
    UP Diliman campus, Quezon City (near Trinoma mall & SM North EDSA mall)
    Cawit, Cavite (Phil. History stuff - house of Emilio Aguinaldo)
    Pila, Laguna (small town with old preserved houses)
    Pagsanjan Falls (there are touts for girlies & children, I've heard)
    Panguil Ecopark
    Caliraya Lake
    Hidden Valley in Alaminos, Laguna
    Jose Rizal House/Museum in Calamba, Laguna (Phil. history)
    Tagaytay City & Taal Volcano
    UP Los Banos campus

    If you're into trekking or mountaineering, you could go to mountains in Batangas, Laguna, Rizal or Quezon, but you'd need a guide.

    If you're going to Tagaytay, the Taal Vista Hotel offers great views. They have a resto and you can dine al fresco and enjoy the view. There's also Josephine's restaurant, which is along the highway, also has good views. There's also a lookout/overlooking-the-lake type of place where there are mini restaurants and bars (but no girlies) - I don't know the name of the place but I've been there before. Maybe Davis knows. There's also the "Palace in the Sky", which was a resthouse of the Marcoses in Tagaytay. Now it's more of a people's park, and a bit rundown (sad, because it could be a good place if they maintained it).

    For islands and beaches, you can try
    Puerto Galera (1-hr by ferry from Batangas)
    Palawan (travel by ferry from Manila or by plane)
    Boracay
    Cebu (with girlie bars as I've seen in Wu's thread)
    Bohol
    Guimaras (small island but good beaches)
    (I don't know the girlie situation in the other islands)

    The past 2 weeks have been too cold for beach weather, and mostly cloudy too. It's like tropical winter. But if you really want to go to the islands and the beach, then go for it.

    Some of the places that I've mentioned for the day trips can be combined in one day as they're near each other, but it would take some planning.

    As one poster said, get googling! Cheers!

  11. #36
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    Thanks, Katie, now I have some work to do! Not really interested in universities or shopping malls. Girlie bars, well......not as a destination or my reason to go to a local (I hear Angeles is useless otherwise....). But a lot of other good suggestions.

    By the way, I am from the northeast US - on a good day the ocean may get up to 18 degrees or so...and air temps in the high 20's sounds perfect to me! I've been in Malaysia for 5 years now and I am still not used to the hot weather! So these temps sound like great beach weather to me!

  12. #37
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    If you plan to stay 4-5 days in Manila, then you can also choose to stay at a hotel in Ermita or Malate, Manila. That area is near Intramuros, Manila Bay, US Embassy, Rizal Park. It's also near a large mall, Robinson's Ermita, and many pubs and girlie bars. Intramuros and the US cemetery can be done in a day, I think.

    The reason I pointed out universities is that I have a friend who's into visiting universities and museums in an area, so I thought that might be your thing. I mentioned a lot of malls, because after a whole day of sightseeing in the heat, it's nice to relax in some airconditioned goodness. Also, I'm a girl, so I try to visit the malls in every new place that I go to.

    Another alternative to staying 5 days in Manila is that you can spend 2-3 days in Manila and another few days in a mountain resort in Batangas or Laguna. They have pools and hot springs. Then you can spend the rest of the days in an island resort. Most of the places that I've mentioned for day trips are south of Manila, and in Laguna province (which is my turf). So those places are maybe 30-45 min away by car. You get to breathe fresh mountain air and get away from noisy and polluted Manila. (Like Davis, I don't like Manila and I only go there for important errands or big-time shopping.) Tagaytay & Taal is a short distance away from Laguna too. Depending on your budget, I could recommend some resorts.

    Some of those resorts are:
    88 Hotspring Resort and Spa (owned by Koreans) - pricey, but very nice - went there for day trip via company outing and facilities are great, with pools of diff water temp
    Dona Jovita Garden Resort - haven't been there but looks nice from outside
    Splash Mountain Resort or Splash Oasis Resort; Splash Oasis is new & nicer but a bit pricier, from same owner
    Sol y Viento Mountain Resort - haven't been there but good reviews from colleagues
    Monte Vista Resort Hotel - more family friendly, lots of water slides

    You could also check out Villa Escudero. It's a mountain resort in Tiaong, Quezon. There are pools, and in the afternoon there are cultural shows (native dances and similar stuff). I went there for a day trip via company outing and it was great too.

    If you want to go to Puerto Galera, the Batangas city port is easy to reach from Laguna or Quezon. You can also opt to stay at one of the resorts or hotels in Tagaytay and make it your base in the south. From Batangas, Cavite or Laguna, it's easy to get to Manila if you have to go to the pier (for Palawan) or airport for Palawan, Cebu, Boracay or Bohol.

    If you need a driver to bring you around, I could recommend some too. I know of some guys who have car/van rental businesses. One is the hub of a colleague, another the driver of a school service. I could get in touch with them and you'll be with a reputable driver. If they're not available personally, they know guys who are in the same business. I think it would be better to hire a south-based driver versus a Manila-based driver, since they're from the area already, they know those places, and speak good English!

    Re: temp, it's in the 20s now, and too cold for me, either for pools or beach. But if you're from the NE USA, then it should be ideal for you. Yes, Malaysia is hotter than here at the moment.

    Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any of these resorts or these car/van rental businesses. I'm just here to help, and putting out all these information since I'm a local and the info might be useful to people who want to travel in these areas.

  13. #38
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    Did the Corridgor Island tour today….it was great! Just wish we had more time there (many of the stops were rushed) … probably would have been better to stay overnight and do a 2 day tour.

    Off to do Taal tomorrow…and a city tour on Friday. I'll post some photos next week when I get back home..!

  14. #39
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    Glad you're enjoying your trip. Cheers and happy safe travels!

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by danno5
    I'll post some photos next week when I get back home..!
    Looking forward to it

  16. #41
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    Tagaytay, Taal is definitely a nice spot near Manila, i live at the foot of it in Laguna.

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