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Sunday, December 6, 2009

~ Cebu Manila Trip - Day 1 @ Cebu ~

27th Nov 09

Hubby and I did not manage to have much sleep. The seats are rather narrow and Hubby felt uncomfortable with the space while I am just not used to sleeping on the plane. We reached Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport - Terminal 3 at around 4.30am. Took our luggages and check in again with the domestic flight (CebupacificAir) from Manila to Cebu.
Walking our way to the waiting area for boarding. There is still an hour of waiting and we all slept while Denver played his PSP. The sunrise in Philippines is earlier... at 5am, we can see the rays from the sun. We were on board again by half past 6 taking the transit flight to Cebu. ^_^

We finally arrived at Mactan Airport at 7:40 am! The kids enjoy waiting and spotting our luggages while Hubby and I on the other hand are busy making sure they are still with us.

Lutchie's brother, Tim is already waiting outside the airport and helped to send us back to the hotel. Along the way we saw people selling all sorts of stuff (papers, cigarettes, baskets etc) in between the roads. There are fewer divider lines and you can see jeepneys and cars.


We reached Diplomat Hotel at 9:10am. Our room is 308. It is a Delux Room located at the Old Wing with a Double and Single bed costing at 1360P per night. (~ 43 SGD). The room is rather old but spacious. The toilet is small and their tiles are old. I would appreciate if the water flow is stronger and the bedsheets are cleaner. Other than that, all is ok. It is located near Midtown where there are some shopping malls. The hotel staffs are also friendly and helpful. http://www.diplomathotelcebu.com/

We are all so tired and hungry and we went out hunting for our lunch. The nearest mall is Robinson Plaza (about 10mins walk from the hotel) and we settled down at Rai-Rai Ken (Japanese Resturant) with Denver's request.

Ordered 3 Ramens (Seafood Hotpot, Chasyu Ramen and I forgot the 3rd one), 3 drinks (Calamasi, Four Season and Chocolate shake). Total: 660p (~20SGD)
After lunch, we pop by Robinsons Supermarket to purchase our Mineral Bottles. These will be our water supply during our stay there. :) We walked back to Diplomat and all of us took an afternoon nap.

3pm - Woke up after a good rest and we all wash up and now it's the time to explore MidTown. With the recommendation from 1 of the hotel staff, our first stop is Raintree Mall where we are sending in our laundry. It is also about 10 mins walk from our hotel near Robinson Plaza.

Since we will be away for so many days, it is very challenging to bring so many clothings for our 9 days trip. Therefore, local laundry service is extremely important. In addition, it does not really cost a lot as they charge by per Kilogram. (unlike in the hotel where it is charged by per piece).

We finally found the laundry shop located at the first level (On the right side of the mall). Speedy Laundry Services. It only cost us 80p (~$2.50 SGD) with all the clothings we wore for the day and we can collect them after our trip from Bohol.

Just a few shops down, we saw Ice Castle (Halo Halo & Ice-Cream House). We ordered siewmai, halo halo special and boracay (banana split). When you come to Philippines, Halo Halo is a must try! (from Tagalog halo means "mix"). It is a popular Filipino dessert where I read that there is no specific recipe for this dessert. Generally, a wide variety of ingredients are used.

The Halo Halo which we had in Ice Castle is really Tasty! It has peach, jelly, redbean, coconut, cereal, corn, sweet potoato and Ice Cream! It is like our Ice Kachiang just that they have more ingredients. :)

Boracay is the Banana Split with 3 flavours of ice-cream. Yummy for the kiddos. Total Cost - 239p (~$7.50 SGD) for all the great stuff!

Next, we continued our walk and pass by a few smaller malls. Mango Avenue, National Bookstore etc.

With the sunrise earlier in Philippines, their sun set earlier too. It started to get dark at around 5pm. We settled down for dinner at Jollibee. It is a fast food resturant based in Philippines. (http://www.jollibee.com.ph/)
Coincidentally, there is a birthday party going on and there are balloons, music in the room where the children inside are having lotsa fun. The mascott - Jollibee who is extremely friendly also came out to entertain Denver & Gladys and have a photoshot with us after the birthday party! So LUCKY!

Straight after our dinner, Midtown had a power failure shortly after we stepped out of the resturant! Oh My!! This is the first time the children is experiencing this and they were wondering what happened! Daddy and Mommy now has to be extra careful with our belongings and hold the children tightly. There are still a few lights on the roads and we quickly make our way to Robinson Plaza. Along the way, there are beggars (mostly children) touching us asking for money. We did not stop and continued to go into the mall.

It is also rather dark inside as only a few shops had lights. The security guards are walking around with their tourch lights and we stood by one of the stall selling Lechon which is lighted. As you can see, they have HUGE Roasted Pig for sale! Basically, they will chop on the spot for the amount of meat the customer needed.
Robinson supermart is also experiencing power failure but we decided to make our way in as we need to purchase more mineral bottles. The funny thing is the electricity manage to get back on only for about 10 secs before it went out again. This went on for many times. Everytime when the lights went on, there will be "Yeah" and when the lights went out, there will be "Awwwws"...We used the lights from our mobile phones to locate our purchases and queue up for payment. It is a loooong queue as the cashier cannot scan the products and there are no alternative plans for manual payments as well. I believe the locals are quite use to this situation as it is not chaotic.. You can still see people walking around, buying and selling. They seems to know what to do and just patiently queue up waiting for their turns. Imagine if this is to happen in Singapore!

On the other hand, Denver is rather frastrated as the mall is getting hotter and he is getting tired of standing. We told him that he should understand how lucky he has been and that he should appreicate things more. It is really a Good Experience for all of us. How many times will we have black-out here??

The power eventually got back and we finally make our purchases. Not knowing if it will go off again, we quickly bought cakes at Goldilocks and even had a Fruit Salad (Mixture of mango, corn, watermelon, coconut etc. - 49p) at one of the stall. :p

We did not went back to the hotel... instead, we continue to stroll around midtown area and spotted Crown Regency Hotel. It was a good choice that we decided to go visit as there are quite a couple of stuff you can enjoy there.

From 25th to the 38th floor, there are sky ride/walk experience adventure. However, there is a height limit and hence Gladys is not allowed to enter. Anyway, we are not that adventurous as a start. :p But it will be good for those who are keen to have a view of cebu city from the top. :D

http://www.skyexperienceadventure.com/main/

Instead, we went for the 4D Theater and was just on time for the 8pm show. We bought tickets for all the 3 shows which is about 10 mins each. (The Lost Island, Dino Rampage and Deep Sea Adventure)... Unfortunately, Gladys is afraid after the first show and I took her out when the 2nd show (Dino Rampage) is on. I guess the sound effects, water splashing and visual experience is too real for her.

The staff there is very nice and he return me the tickets as Gladys & I did not watch them. He mention we can return the next day to watch again.. So sweet. After resting for awhile, I asked Gladys if she is keen on watching the last show (Deep Sea Adventure) where the staff says it's not scary and more suitable for children. Kudos to her for agreeing to make the attempt and going in for the last show! She was still scared with the effects even though it was not as bad.. We have to carry her and cover her eyes. Denver on the other hand enjoyed it.

We took a cab back to our hotel and rest for the night.. That's a lot of excitement for Day 1 so far!

====================================================================

Airport tax (domestic) - 800p
Lunch @ Rai Rai Ken - 660p
Mineral bottles #6 - 51p
Milk packets #4 - 100p
Desserts @ Ice Castle - 239p
Laundry @ Speedy - 80p
Dinner @ Jollibee - 308p
Fruit Salad - 49p
4D Theatre - 1200p
Cab fare to Diplomat - 32.5p
Oceanjet tickets for Bohol - 1600p
Total Spent - 5119.5p

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