Iloilo Trip 2020: Day 1 ~ Around Roxas City and To Our Resort

October 17, 2020

The adventures in this trip already started before the day of our flight out from Manila. Because the schedule of our departure was during the wee hours of the morning, we had to plan how we were all going to the airport. It would be faster for me to go straight to the airport from home, but one thing I worried about is the availability of Grab in our area. I was actually ready to risk it (bahala na) but Jean suggested I could sleep over at the condo, and the four of us would meet up at the lobby the next morning to book a Grab together to travel to the airport. 😀

Things did happen according to the plan. All four of us arrived to the airport with ample time before our scheduled departure. To my surprise, the airport lobby was jampacked even in that hour (our trip happened in early February by the way). I was so sleepy but I didn't want to take a nap. Instead, I pulled out my phone and continued studying the Machine Learning course on the Coursera app (honestly I didn't retain anything during that time).

I had no seatmate on the plane. I was on the aisle seat. I really wanted to get a glimpse of the sky through the window, so even though I was getting so sleepy, I peeked outside from time to time anticipating to see some rays of sunlight as it was nearing dawn already. And yes, I did see a thin film of sunlight because we were above the clouds around 4AM.

There were already a few people wearing masks during that time. We still didn't wear one during that time because there weren't cases locally as released by the government back then. 😅 (also, I see you mister photobomber)

We landed at Roxas City airport around 6AM.

The "organizer" for that day was Krishan. He was in charge of the itinerary for that day. And so we followed him as per his research, there was a restaurant that's already open at this hour of the morning. After a few inquiries with the locals, we were directed to the tricycle terminal that will bring us there.

Their tricycle is a bit different with what we are used to. The inside and the back-ride are both two-seaters. But wait, there's more! There's actually another extra seat directly above the wheel on the other side. Apparently, this is the common setup for tricycles in the city. I had the chance to be on the side ride and it was a thrilling experience (I was just gripping hard on the handles of the trike as a precaution of course). It was a little scary at first, but once you get the hang of it, it was adrenaline-inducing. It was also a great way to do some sight-seeing around the city. 😀

Unfortunately, our target restaurant was still closed, so we had to detour to a nearby hotel to have breakfast. Takeaway: learn to adapt with unexpected changes in the plan!

All's well that ends well on a full belly! After we had our breakfast, we decided to checkout the shore in front of the restaurant for a bit. The wind was too strong and so we decided to proceed taking another trike ride to our next destination: The Panublion Museum. But before going straight to the museum, we visited first Spanggo to try out their famous pies!

Chit-chat while waiting for our order.

We tried three varieties of the pie: apple, pineapple, and buko. I liked buko one the most.

After that hearty dessert (or was that our lunch?), we walked towards the museum (with all our carry-on baggages 😂).

The Manuel A. Roxas Monument is just a few steps from the museum.

Maybe because it was still early morning, it was only the four of us in the museum. It was just small, but the items preserved here were very fascinating. Each item on display is a piece of history of Roxas City.

It was amazing to see original transcripts handwritten by the former Philippine president himself.

After spending several minutes inside the museum, we decided it's time to travel to our resort. We booked our accommodation at Solina Resort, which is located a good 67 kilometers from where we were currently at. Based on our research, there were multiple ways to commute there. After some inquiring with the locals, we ended up riding a van. It won't take us straight there, and we were told we'll need to transfer a few more rides to reach the resort. It was gloomy that day, and the atmosphere didn't much help our mood during that journey. We started the day early, and we were tired already. A few misunderstandings with the route happened along the way, but again, all's well that ends well with us arriving safe and sound to our hotel. Special thanks to that kuya who helped us find another tricycle that would take us to yet another tricycle that would finally take us to the resort itself. Whew!

The gang at our cabin!

At this point we finally got to relax and sink in to this vacation! 😀 After settling in on our chosen beds, we went out to have dinner at the resort's restaurant. We were excited to try local dishes so we ordered several from their menu.

With a satisfied appetite, we checked out the rest of the resort. The resort's pool is huge! I was excited to experience it in the coming days of our stay!

As we walked further around the area, we arrived on a spot with almost no lights. It was a new moon that night, and we looked up and just felt so amazed to see that many stars in the sky. I craned my neck hard to absorb the vastness of that sky. I felt grateful. It was the first time the four of us travelled together, and just within this day, I already got to uncover some of the unseen sides of them. 😂 

Next day itinerary: Islas de Gigantes! 

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