Life-Trotting with Maribeth

Hola! I'm Maribeth. I work online. I love: food, photography, and travel (among other things). Can't tell you enough about me so read my blog. :)

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Sagada, Mt. Province Philippines

Follow us on our tour and adventures at the beautiful place of Sagada, Mt. Province.

Cagayan De Oro White Water Rafting

Conquering 21 major rapids at Cagayan De Oro River. A very rewarding experience for a beginner like me!

The Majestic Mayon Volcano

The Mayon Volcano is well-known for its perfect cone shape. Even the thick clouds that cover some part of the volcano won't stop you from getting impressed with its majestic beauty.

Summerscape at CamSur: Wakeboarding

Summer's definitely not over yet. Wakeboarding at CamSur can make your arms and neck really sore but it's all worth the fun and experience! :)

Isla Gigantes Adventure

An unspoiled group of islands in the town of Carles, Iloilo. White sand, pristine water, and beautiful scenery - truly a paradise.

Snorkeling. More fun in the Philippines

With those giant whale sharks swimming in Tan-awan, Oslob sea, snorkeling is indeed more fun in the Philippines!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012


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Hello everyone! It's the time of the year once again when people are extra friendly, sweet, and loving. So I'd like to greet you all a merry and wonderful Christmas. Let's not forget the true reason of our celebration this day - the birth of Jesus Christ! Let's all be happy and enjoy the day. :) 

Please don't forget to follow me at: Facebook & Twitter. Thanks!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Hanging Coffins at Sagada Echo Valley

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My boyfriend thought it was "Eco-Valley", an ecological park of some sort. So imagine his surprise when all he saw was limestones and coffins. lol Well, it was called the Echo Valley because of the echo that you create when you shout. Our guide said that it was because of the limestone in the area. I'm not really sure about this because I thought we can also create echoes in mountains with no limestone. heheh

The not-so-ordinary practice of hanging coffins is part of the Igorots' tradition. Here are some information  that we've learned from our tour guide, Ezra:
  • Only Igorots who died a natural death are allowed to be put inside the hanging coffins.
  • Babies and those who died due to ailments are not allowed to be put in hanging coffins because it is believed by the Igorots that by doing so will bring them bad luck.
  • The hanging coffins are rather small and an average person wouldn't fit inside. Well, as part of the tradition, the deceased body should go back to the fetus-like position just like how they came into this world. 
  • Before putting the body inside the coffin, they wrap it with a blanket and pass it overhead like a ball. Whoever gets blood drops while the corpse is being passed is said to have good luck in life.
  • The coffin is hung first before placing the corpse inside it.
  • One of the mysteries that really bogged me about these hanging coffins is how the natives hang them so high up in the sides of the mountains. What makes it even more impossible to imagine is there are no mechanical tools used in the process. According to Ezra, our guide, the coffins are hanged first - empty. After the coffin is secured and positioned, the natives will then place the body inside. The explanation is acceptable if you look at the photo above but what about the other one we saw that's  hanging like 50 meters above the ground on another cliff? Perhaps they used a really tall ladder or they've found a trail on how to get there at the top.

That's all I can remember for now. I'll ask our tour guide for more information when I get to catch him online.

Anyway, the Echo Valley is not far from the Sagada town proper. You just need to walk a bit and trek to the place where you can see the coffins up close. It was kind of weird to see those wooden coffins hanged at the mountain sides. Not really creepy, just weird.

It rained in the morning so the trek was slippery when we got there. After the tour, we were all muddy, sweaty and wet already. lol But it was all worth the adventure and the experience. No need to wear hiking or trekking gears actually. Slippers will do. :D

Meeting another group along the way made our Echo Valley tour more fun. Actually, they made our whole Sagada trip more fun and memorable. ;)

That's all for now about our Sagada trip. Merry Christmas everyone! :)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Sagada Trip: An Overview

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My post about our Sagada Trip is long overdue. Lol I've been very busy this past month and I have so many back logs at work and here in my blog as well. Anyway, since I don't know how to start talking about the Sagada trip, let me just summarize it first in this post.

As usual, I booked our airline tickets during a seat sale event months before our trip. I came up with our Sagada itinerary based on online research. We weren't able to follow everything on our itinerary though due to unavailability of some destinations. This was our itinerary, instead:


Arrived at Sagada (12:00 PM )
Checked-in at George Guest House
Had lunch at Lemon Pie House


Bomod-ok Falls (Cancelled - Falls was closed because it was a holiday for the Igorots)
Lake Danum ( No sunset because it was foggy)


Kiltepan Peak (Sunrise Watching)
Orange Picking
Sagada Tour 
Banaue Rice Terraces
Back to Manila

On our Echo Valley Tour, we were lucky to join a group who were also staying at George Guest House. Little did we know that it would be the start of our friendship with them. Our tour guide, Ezra, told us that it would be a better idea if we join them on our tour the next day. So we did and the caving adventure was so much fun that it took us 5 long hours to finish it. Normally, the cave connection tour can be finished in 3-4 hours. 

We were very thankful that they welcomed us in their group because we were able to ride in their vehicle going to Kiltepan Peak and Rock Inn Cafe. To add to our luck, they also allowed us to hitch going to Nueva Ecija where they're headed so that we can just ride a bus from there going to Manila. Lesser expenses and hassle for both of us. We even had the chance to stop by a number of Rice Terraces view points in Banaue.

I'll be publishing detailed posts about our specific tours, experience, etc. about this trip so stay tuned! :)

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving Day - The Best Time To Shop For Christmas?

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It's Thanksgiving season once again. Though we do not officially celebrate the holiday here in the Philippines, we still get to enjoy it because of the huge discounts from different online shops. The sale usually begins during Thanksgiving Day or the day after which is popularly known as Black Friday. Major shopping stores in the US traditionally offer promotional sales to welcome the Christmas shopping season during this day. But due to the modernization of our world today, Black Friday has spread all throughout the cyberworld., for one is having their 'Tis The Season Sale right now which lasts until Sunday, November 25. They are offering big discounts for their hundreds of brand new styles from cute and chic dresses and vintage swimwear to stylish stuff for your home. This Round About Time Mug, for example, is now $7.99 only - almost 50% off its original price of $15!

Roundabout Time Mug

I haven't tried shopping from yet. I just recently discovered about this shopping site when I saw the 99 Tie wedges by Jeffrey Campbell at Pinterest. So when I was brought to their website, I can't help browsing through the different style of clothes, shoes, and other stuff that they offer.

As a person who loves to travel, it's hard for me to splurge on shopping. So the Black Friday event and other year-end promotional sales are such great opportunities for me to shop especially that Christmas is almost a month away.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Travel and Fashion: Map Wedge Shoes

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Though I love travel and fashion, these two don't go too well most of the time for me. Comfort is my top priority when traveling. So when I found this photo on Pinterest, I was really awed by the creativity of the designer. It has perfectly combined travel and fashion in this shoe. Aside from flip flops, I also love to wear wedges. Although I don't fancy wearing this particular one, I wouldn't mind having a pair in my shoe rack or cabinet. :D

This is the 99 Tie wedges by Jeffrey Campbell. The latitude on each pair of shoes are actually unique so even if you find someone wearing the same shoes, they still won't look exactly the same. The photo was pinned from and a pair of this lovely wedge costs $152.99. So if you like it,  you can Shop Shoes from Modcloth!

If you have a pair of this, how will you mix it with your clothes? I'm thinking of pairing it with white or beige (short) shorts and any tank top.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Just Joined BC Bloggers

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I'm not new to blogging. I've been doing it for more than 5 years already. But I've never blogged too seriously. I didn't engage with other bloggers, didn't build up links, etc. It was just sort of personal blogging for me. This time though, I intend to share tips, information, and some experience that may also be of good use to others.

Recently, I discovered a blogging community, the BC Bloggers. I've seen their badge in most blogs I've hopped to so I thought it was a good start for me to build up and spread a word about my site by joining this big community online. I'm looking forward to meet more bloggers and be more active and inspired in updating and improving my blog.

If you're interested to join BC Bloggers as well, just click the badge above. See you around! :D

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sagada Itinerary (in the making)

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When planning to go for a trip, I always want to squeeze in a number of places in a short period of time. But always end up cancelling one destination due to time constraint: We weren't able to visit Caramoan when we went to CamSur and our Camiguin trip was also cancelled when we went to CDO.

Right now, I'm drafting an itinerary for Sagada. We booked a ticket to Manila months before so I'm hoping we'll be able to see the rice terraces this time. I wanted to visit the tattooed women in Kalinga for this trip but upon researching on travel time, transportation, etc., it seems that it won't be possible again if we are to visit the tourist spots in Sagada.

Here's my itinerary so far:


10:00 PM  ETD Manila-Banaue (9hrs)


7:30 AM   ETA Banaue
8:30 AM   ETD Banaue-Bontoc (3hrs)
11:00 AM ETA Bontoc
12:00 NN  ETD Sagada
1:00 PM    ETA Sagada
1-2:30 PM Lunch & Rest
2:30 PM    Echo Valley Tour + Mt. Ampacao Trek via Lake Danum


4:30 AM   Kiltepan View (Optional)
7:00 AM   Breakfast
8:00 AM Spelunking
12:00 NN Lunch + Orange Picking
2:00 PM     Bomod-ok Falls


4:30 AM    Kiltepan View
7:00 AM    Breakfast
7:30-8 AM ETD Sagada-Baguio (5-6 hrs)
2:00 PM    ETA Baguio + Lunch
3:00 PM    Tour (strawberry farm,camp john hay, etc)
10-12:00    ETD Baguio-Manila

As usual, this is not final yet and I guess it will never be

I welcome tips and suggestions for this trip. Thank you!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Sand Bar Island Beach Resort, Concepcion Iloilo

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Western Visayas Paradise Islands (Aside From Boracay)

Boracay is the first thing that comes to mind to most people who want to have an island getaway. Its paradise-like beauty is undeniable. But little did we know, there are more paradise islands in Western Visayas: I've been to Guimaras, Isla Gigantes, and just recently, to Sand Bar Island Beach Resort in Concepcion, Iloilo. These islands also have white sand, fresh air, and beautiful scenery. But unlike Boracay, these islands are unspoiled, not too crowded, and still in its pristine beauty.

Sand Bar Island Beach Resort

This small island, owned by Mr. Sonny Eusala, is located in Concepcion Iloilo. It is a three-hour bus ride from Iloilo City and about thirty-minute boat ride from Concepcion port. Upon arrival, the water was overflowing on the long stretch of sand bar. The sand is still visible though and it was even a more welcoming site for us.

The clear beach water was very inviting for a swim. There is a small boat or a canoe that can be rented at the resort for a fee of PhP100/hour.  During low tide, it's hard to miss the opportunity to stroll around the island. The white sand and the fresh sea breeze are perfect for a lazy stroll. The surrounding nearby islands are a beautiful scenery that makes the place even more beautiful.

Needless to say, Sand Bar Island Beach Resort is really BEAUTIFUL.

The Resort

There are small and big cottages in the island resort where guests can stay overnight. No aircon and fan but you wouldn't really need them. Their shower room and comfort rooms are clean enough. Open cottages are also available for a fee for those who are staying for the day but free for overnight guests.

Guests can bring their own food and cook it in the resort. For overnight stayers, make sure to buy ice for food storage. You can borrow an ice box from them and other cooking materials. There is also a sari-sari store in the resort where you can buy basic necessities like cooking oil, coffee, dish washing liquid etc. But its better to bring your own because they're somehow overpriced.

The resort can provide fresh water and drinking water for the guests. Each container of fresh water costs PhP20 and 5 gallons of drinking water costs PhP100.

Electricity in the island is until 10pm only. There are no sockets as well. They basically provide you with lights only. If you need to charge your cellphone or electronic gadgets, you may do so at the owner's house. After 10pm, you can have a bonfire near the beach. They charge PhP300 for the bonfire setup.

Island Hopping

Island hopping activity at the resort costs PhP2,000 for 16 people with 5 island destinations. I've heard about Agho Island before and we passed by it during the activity. We didn't stop by the island though because the entrance fee of PhP25/person and PhP100 boat parking fee turned us off. The island is much like Sand Bar Island Beach Resort so we decided not to stop by.

Agho Island
Among all the islands we went to in this activity, I must say that Sand Bar Island Beach Resort is the most beautiful. Though it was fun to go island hopping with friends.

The "Sand Bar"

The sand bar is one of the wonders of Nature that I find really fascinating. That long stretch of curved white sand in the middle of clear water is just stress-relieving. It was even more fun to swim and take photos at the sand bar when it is submerged onto the water. It felt like you're in the middle of the sea.


PhP120    Bus from Iloilo City to Concepcion (vice-versa)
PhP2000  Boat Rental from Concepcion to Sand Bar Island Beach Resort (Roundtrip, up to 20 persons)
PhP25      Environmental Fee
PhP1000  Big Cottage (per night)
PhP800    Small Cottage
PhP2000  Island Hopping Boat Rental (up to 20 persons)

Going to Sand Bar Island Beach Resort is cheaper if you are in a large group. You can already enjoy the place in just 2days and 1night.

Important Note:
Last trip of buses from Concepcion to Iloilo is at 3pm.

Contact Number:
Sonny Eusala - 09068197516

Big thanks to Lakas ng Trip for the very helpful travel guide. :)

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Dropzone Experience

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Dahilayan Adventure Park: Drop Zone

Aside from the dual zipline, which Dahilayan Adventure Park boasts as the longest in Asia, what I really wanted to try is the Drop Zone. I have tried Bohol's, The Plunge, and it gave me a real extreme and stress-relieving experience. The Plunge and the Drop Zone are pretty much the same actually. I just don't know which of the two is higher.

Anyway, the Drop Zone is 120 ft level high and here's my video of it. I just put an audio because my scream was really Enjoy!

Rate for the Drop Zone is PhP500/pax and PhP750/pair. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

White Water Rafting at CDO

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White water rafting is available in several places in the Philippines. But I guess Cagayan De Oro is the most popular spot for this adventure. 

During our recent CDO trip, I wanted to squeeze in Dahilayan Adventure Park, white water rafting, and Camiguin tour in 4days/3nights (Friday-Monday). But it was not convenient for us because Dahilayan only offers shuttle service during Saturdays. White water rafting takes about 5-6 hours including travel time to the site. Then Camiguin is about 2-4 hours travel time away from CDO city depending on your mode of transportation. So we needed to choose between Camiguin and White Water Rafting for our Sunday schedule. Our reservation for the white water rafting wasn't sure yet because each boat needs to have a minimum of 4-5 persons. Which means that we had to wait for a couple or a trio to reserve on the same date. So we decided that if we cannot go on a white water rafting activity, we'll just go to Camiguin. Luckily, there were also 2 guests who booked on the same date so the Camiguin tour was cancelled.

1st Rafting Adventure

We booked our whitewater rafting activity with 1st Rafting Adventure as referred by an inspiring and very helpful travel blogger, Journeying James. There are a number of companies that offer this activity. To make it easier for me to choose, I just relied on James' referral. :)

1st Rafting Adventure has been in business for 17 years already. Several local celebrities and politicians have joined "paddled" with them: Angel Locsin, Piolo Pascual, Marc Nelson, Dyan Castillejo, and even former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
1st Rafting Adventure was very accommodating. I contacted them to inquire about their services months before our trip and they answered my every query. I just booked with them few days before our trip and it was really helpful that they are easy to communicate with. I was able to reach them through email, facebook, and mobile phone.

The rate for the white water rafting advance course 1 was only PhP1000 per person. It included transportation service to the rafting site, rafting guides, gears, and lunch at Brewberry cafe. Already a good deal, right? The Advance Course 1 has 21 rapids and took about 3-4 hours. 

We did not only have a rafting experience but a fun tour at Cagayand De Oro River which separates Bukidnon and Cagayan. To the right of the river was Bukidnon and to the left was Cagayan De Oro. While on still water, we had the chance to swim, jump from a big rock, and of course take pictures. 

Here are some photos taken by our rafting photographers. All of our pictures were compiled in one CD and we paid PhP250 for it. 

High Five! Ahoo! Ahoo!

at a small waterfall

Photographer 1 on a kayak

Photographer 2


FUN is on our
With our guide and photographer
It was really a pity that I was not able to bring my underwater camera. I saw a crack on its edge so I decided not to bring it just to be safe. It would have been really fulfilling to shoot a video while rafting. lol

Anyhow, it was really really fun. The guides are easy to get along with and you'll enjoy their company too.If I go back to CDO, I'd really want to do this again and maybe try a higher course with more rapids. First timers can already go for the Advance 1 course instead of the beginner's course. The rapids looked scary but I think there was nothing to be afraid of. 

For those planning to try whitewater rafting in CDO, make reservations as early as possible especially if there are less than 4 of you so that they can let you join in other groups.

1st Rafting Adventure Contact Details:

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Dahilayan Adventure Park

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Dahilayan Adventure Park boasts of its Dual Zipline being the longest in Asia. So I didn't let the chance pass when I went to Cagayan De Oro last weekend. They say that unplanned trips usually turn out to be the best ones, and I agree with that. However, I still believe that being equipped with essential information can save you from hassles. I just proved it true in our trip to Dahilayan, Bukidnon. They only offer a shuttle service every Saturday at 8am. If you missed it, it would really be difficult and expensive to go there. Their mini van/shuttle service parks at Coffeeworks Divisoria at 8am. They do not accept reservations for the trip. It is on a first come first served basis only. Luckily enough there weren't too many passengers that time. Roundtrip fare is only PhP350.


The bus ride to Dahilayan was breathtaking. We passed by a number of plantations along the way and some of which were owned by Del Monte.

More Photos Here: Road To Dahilayan
On that day, there was a marathon event and we passed by some runners along the way. Running on that rough road at a very hot day was really impressive of them and the shortest distance of the event was 50-something kilometers! Whew! There were even no trees along the road to give them some shade while running.

ACTIVITIES: Zipline, Dropzone, etc.

Upon reaching Dahilayan Adventure Park, we went to the zipzone and paid for the 840m dual zipline and for the Drop Zone,a  free fall from 120 feet. They do not have a locker but the girl, who was one of their staffs, told us to leave our bag where they place the helmets and just bring our valuables with us. And so we did. It was also safe to bring a camera while ziplining. That's why I was able to shoot a video of Paul while "flying by wire". :D

There are many activities to enjoy at Dahilayan Adventure Park aside from the Ziplines and Drop Zone. The Forest Park offers different activities like the Luge, Zorb, mini-golf, and the Rope. Our bus was scheduled to leave at 4pm so we had a lot of time to explore the Forest Park. We didn't try any activities though. We just paid an entrance fee of PhP100 each. They have a picnic area, restaurant/cafe, and a wide place with magnificent view for cam-whoring. ^^




We had lunch at Pine Grove Mountain Lodge. Food is really good... and expensive! Not too expensive but... just expensive. lol The servings can be good for two persons though so you can still save some food expenses. There are no other restaurants or even establishments around so we didn't have any choice that time since we haven't visited the Forest Park yet.

There's a cafe in the Forest Park where you can have lunch as well but the price is pretty much the same at Pine Grove Mountain Lodge. So for those who do not want to spend much here, you can bring your own food and enjoy eating at the picnic area.


Here are some info on the activities and rates at Dahilayan Adventure Park (click the photo to enlarge). For more details, you may check their website:



Dahilayan Adventure Park is certainly a must-visit when you go to Cagayan De Oro. But make sure to go there on Saturday for a cheaper and more convenient trip.

Is it a place I'd love to go back to? Definitely! But if I ever go back to CDO, Dahilayan won't be on top of my list. I want to go to Camiguin first. We were supposed to go there actually but due to time constraint, we weren't able to. Then I want to go water rafting again and maybe visit Ma. Cristina Falls in Iligan. :D