How do you spend your holidays if you are working as a scuba diving instructor on a small Indonesian island? EXACTELY, you travel to small island on the Philippines and spend your time in the water scuba diving.
We travel to the Philippines for the first time and we are very excited to visit a new country. We have almost four weeks to explore this country and get a first glimpse of some of the many islands.
We travel to the Philippines for the first time
Normally we like to travel slow and have enough time to experience the country and the local culture in depth. Because we only have four weeks in the Philippines and there are so many different islands, we will only visit a few of them.
We have planned to visit the Visayas because we also want to do some dives and explore the underwater world.
The Philippines consists of the three groups of islands called Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. The Visayas are the central group of islands and the largest islands are Bohol, Cebu, Lyete, Negros, Panay and Samur.
The Visayas are well known for its beautiful beaches and great dive spots. There are many different ferry connections from one island to the next and island hopping is easy and cheap.
During our first trip to the Philippines we want to visit a few different islands and explore the different dive spots. We haven’t planned all the details but we have a rough idea which islands we want to see.
We fly to Negros where we do some diving in Dauin. From there we ship over to Siquijor, Bohol and Cebu. All of these islands offer some great diving and so we have planned to do some dives on all of these islands. We are really looking forward to see what the dive sites have to offer.
The long journey from Pulau Pef in Indonesia to Dauin on the Philippines
The airline connections from Sorong in Indonesia to Dumaguete in the Philippines are everything but perfect. The journey takes four days and we have stopovers in Makassar, Kuala Lumpur and Manila. Because of bad timing we have to spend one night in a hotel between the connections.
The start of our holidays couldn’t be better. Together with our leaving guests from Pulau Pef we have breakfast in the hotel in Sorong. It’s my birthday and a really nice chocolate cake with candles is waiting for me. After lunch we leave Sorong and fly to Makassar on Sulawesi, Indonesia.
In Makassar we are looking for a nice restaurant to have dinner and celebrate my birthday. Unfortunately we have no luck with finding a decent place. There are many restaurants but all of them are very basic and not what we are looking for. At the end we have dinner in the almost deserted hotel restaurant. Along Losari Beach we find a nice esplanade that seems to be very popular with the locals.
Because the flight from Makassar to Kuala Lumpur is leaving in the afternoon we have enough time to sleep in, relax and have a late breakfast. In Kuala Lumpur we arrive quite late and have to leave early in the morning. The most convenient hotel for a short stopover is the Tune Hotel in walking distance of the airport.
The flight from Kuala Lumpur to Manila leaves early in the morning and so we arrive in Manila before lunch time. Our hotel is only a few kilometres from the airport and so we have the whole afternoon to spend in Manila. Why the transfer from the airport to our hotel took a little longer and how we liked Manila you can read on our blog soon.
The last flight of our journey to Dumaguete on the Philippine island Negros takes about one and a half hour. The transfer from the airport to the small resort is another half hour before we finally arrive in our first destination.
Have you been to the Philippines? Do you have any tips or recommendations for visiting the Philippines for the first time?