2 months In phillipines January 5 - feb 5 2013 General help plz
Replies: 43 - Last Post: Dec 10, 2012 4:47 PM Last Post By: FalconWings
Aug 2, 2012 8:39 AM
2 months In phillipines January 5 - feb 5 2013 General help plzGood Morning Everyone,
I am new on this forum, and will probably be getting ridiculed for asking these questions...
But I am looking at going to the Philippines for 2 months, January to February. I have general questions, such as:
1.) Is this a good time to visit the Philippines?
2.) How does the currency compare to the canadian dollar?
3.) Is there any information on backpacking budget?
4.) What should you see, and when?
5.) any feedback from people who have traveled philippines would greatly be appreciated just on their experiences.
I speak english and some french, so I believe there will be a major language barrier. I haven't done any backpacking anywhere in the world, however I have stayed in hostels before in Canada for snowboarding. I am expecting quite the difference.
For now, my budget was going to be 9,000.00 and I was originally going to go to Australia with my friend, but seeing as how I can go anywhere in the world, I would rather travel to Asia, and see the Philippines, and possibly Indonesia (specifically Bali) I hope I can cut my budget down to roughly 4,000.00 Canadian for 2 months.
I am not expecting to live 5 star, and stay in classy resorts or hotels, I would prefer to see the culture, and not get caught in tourist traps.
After work, im going to be purchasing some books to read so I can get some information,
I was hoping I could get some community feedback as well.
Any information on budgeting, sights to see, and peoples experiences would be fantastic.
I greatly appreciate the feedback,
Thanks From Canada,
Eric - Aka TwoMonthStint
Aug 2, 2012 9:08 AM
Aug 2, 2012 9:14 AM
2Mail order the Lonely Planet Guide Book. They have tourist itineraries that help with travel times and maps to familiarize you with city names and destinations.
Buy or copy a larger map helps. When you see a city or area that interest you, type it in the advanced search upper corner of this page and see what comes up.
Aug 2, 2012 10:33 AM
3Currency converter here- http://www.oanda.com/currency/converter/
Good info here - http://www.travelphil.com/internet_eng/index.html
Look for the Jens Peters book on the Philippines, (try before you buy at the library!) I've read here on these forums that it's better than the Lonely Planet book of which the new edition has been dissed a few times here.
$4000 CDN for 2 months is plenty, if fact you will live quite well with that amount. Basically you can budget $25/nite or less accommodation except in the big cities and food should be $10/day or less depending on how much you drink - Beer is about 75cents and a jug of cheap rum is about $2!
Do some research first on the areas you want to visit and come back here and ask specific questions. As #2 says use the search feature on this page. Jan-Feb are excellent times to visit.
There is no language barrier, English is spoken everywhere - thanks America! (It was America's only colony)
Aug 2, 2012 10:36 AM
Aug 2, 2012 11:13 AM
- Thank you so much, ill check out that book when i get home from work.
- I have heard from friends that you can live well for 25-30 a day, im not very finnicky, and am just hoping on seeing natural sites, seeing some history, meeting locals, and chilling out. Im not a surfer, but im hoping to learn there!
Jagman, i have a question for you as well, what do you know about Bali and Indonesia? Would you reccomend spending a month in Indonesia and a month in Philippines? or 2 months in Philippines?
Thank you so much for the information, it is very much appreciated!!!
-I meant January 5th, till March 5th, sorry. Its still early here ;_;
How do you guys feel about traveling to these countries on your own?
Is it a bad idea? Should I travel with a friend?
Aug 2, 2012 11:41 AM
6I've been to the Phils 7 times, currently planning my 8th for Oct/Nov this year. I'm also Canadian (Vancouver) Sorry, never been to Bali although Ive traveled Thailand, Burma, Cambodia and Vietnam. You can easily spend 2 months in the Philippines, its a hugely diverse country. I spend up to 6 weeks on each of my trips, I do a different section each time to allow myself to really see it in depth.
Traveling alone isn't a problem although as a newbie it's nice to have another person to help figure things out. You will find yourself traveling a tourist route & meeting like minded people so you will be able to pick peoples brains and narrow down what you want to do and how to travel to it.
You mentioned surfing so here's an idea (I did this last November, waves are still good Jan/Feb) Head up to La Union from Manila to the town of San Juan, (bus, maybe 7 hours) there's a great surf area there, cheap accommodation, good food and good vibe. I spent 5 nites, could have stayed longer. Surf lessons are 400php/hour = $9, includes board and instructor.
I stayed at the Mona Lisa for 800/nite, but Surfboy also recommended the Sunset German resort.
You can do this as part of a circuit that takes you up into the mountains where the rice terraces are. Rice terraces are not to be missed. Research this - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banaue_Rice_Terraces
Aug 2, 2012 12:11 PM
Im from Edmonton, was actually just in the queen charolette islands just north of van island for some sportfishing!
You should come help a noob out in jan / feb haha.
Is there any sights that you would reccomend to see?
What do you budget when you go? Do you stay at homes, hostels, hotels?
Where would you say to avoid?
What were the highlights of your experiences? I have tried reading around, and i cant really find a tone of info on the matter...
Aug 2, 2012 2:25 PM
8in philippines -budget places are called pension houses -can range from 200-1000 fan /aircon ,even hotels with basic facilities are under 1000 ,start looking for info on islands like bohol /cebu /mindanao - try reading some of surfboy's blogs or other blogs on philippines -there are lots of them from budget travellers with a lot less money than you have .
Aug 2, 2012 2:43 PM
9irishman12, do you know what the costs of meals range from?
1 Cad = 41.5 php , so i think I will be in good shape exchange rate wise.
Ill be checking blogs out when I get home from work, im just trying to compile information on the islands, and currency, and what to pack. Im a total noobie so any information is greatly appreciated.
Aug 2, 2012 4:08 PM
10Alone is no problem. You'll meet people.
I'd look at 3 main areas: north Luzon, Palawan, Visayas.
You can do a north luzon loop though Banaue and Sagada in 7-10 days, depending on how much you like mountain treks and tribes, and how remote you want to go. You can do your surfing at La Union or Baler, easy to integrate either with that loop. I personally prefer Baler, but either will do.
Palawan is a must, figure 2 weeks, fly to Coron, work your way south to PP.
Then fly PP-Cebu, and there's tons of stuff in that area. Mostly ocean oriented, lots of beaches and snorkeling. Look into Dumaguete/Apo Island, Siquijor, Moalboal, Malapascua, Bantayan, Cabilao, Bohol. Sogod Bay on Leyte is better for whale sharks than Oslob; they don't feed the sharks and treat them with a lot more respect. Also consider dropping down to north Mindanao, CDO across to Camiguin and Siargao, another surf option.
You won't be able to do all that in 2 months, but look into them and see what looks best to you. Avoid trying to push too much stuff into too little time, getting from place to place can take more time and effort than you might think and you don't want to spend your whole trip on buses and boats.
Aug 2, 2012 10:01 PM
Aug 2, 2012 10:04 PM
12Some good suggestions already. Dont forget if you stay for 2 months you will need to get an extension from an Immigration Office. With 2 months you could cover quite a few places. As above Palawan is well worth a few weeks. Then the Visayan region for beaches etc. Malapascua, Banatayan, Siquijor, Bohol etc. And dont miss Sagada, Banaue and Batad, very amazing places. Travel can be time consuming so have a good plan and dont try to squeeze in too much..
Aug 2, 2012 10:33 PM
Aug 3, 2012 1:19 AM
14The Philippines is cheap, just getting there from Vancouver is quite expensive. I remember my Dad paying close to 2 grand for a round trip ticket for each of us. Coming back (one way) was $1,200 alone.
Once your there though, its cheap, like the above have already mentioned you can get by on $25 a day if your outside the main cities e.g Cebu, Manila. In the provinces you can get by on much less.
Puerto GaleraBook now
(0 star Hotel)
From US$0.00 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$181.57 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$159.12 per night