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Need help with Philippines itinerary

hawaii
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Need help with Philippines itinerary

Thanks in advance for any help with my Philippines itinerary! I have been reading the forums and taking note of all the helpful advice. Will be visiting in January for the first time with my family (2 adults, 2 kids under 2), plus my mom. She is from there but was too poor to travel the country while growing up so we are trying to pack a lot in. So here is our itinerary so far:

-Fly into Manila, day tour to Villa Escudero (my mom's pick...anyone ever been?)

-Fly from Manila to Bohol, stay 3 days/2 nights. Do countryside tour (I see Bohol Travel Buddy recommended a lot here) and maybe Panglao tour?

-Boat from Bohol to Cebu City (my mom's pick) for day tour (again, recommendations welcome); stay overnight

-Fly from Cebu City to Puerto Princesa, Palawan. Stay in El Nido for 3 nights/2 days. We would love to stay in the overwater bungalows but they are quite pricey. Anyone have any experience bargaining down?

Then the rest of our visit will be spent back in my mom's hometown in Northern Luzon. Any advice will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Negros Island...
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1. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

Your budget for hotel stays so we can recommend accordingly.

Panglao tour? Or do you mean the island hopping tour?

Cebu daytour is more than doable. Just to say you have been there, I guess.

Negros Island...
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2. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

Tried to edit my reply it didnt work. Anyways, Magellans Cross, Sto Nino Church, Colon st (oldest street in the Phil), Sugbu Museum, Casa Gorordo, Parian-are all in one area. Lapu2x monument is in Mactan. Pls dont eat at that SUTUKIL area, seafood area. Yuk. Good cheap food in Cebu is a challenge.

Jumalon butterfly farm, Buddhist temple are other interesting places too. Cebu has small, not well-maintained roads so traffic is horrendous.

hawaii
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3. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

Thanks for the advice! Maybe skip Cebu City tour and just sightsee on our own since the main sights we wanted to see seem to all be in one area. Will also avoid seafood area too!

For Panglao tour on Bohol, I had heard about the bee farm and that it was good? Also wanted to see Alona beach.

Any particular fast ferry recommended from Bohol to Cebu City? I see SuperCat, OceanJet and WeeSam online.

alkhobar
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4. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

your plans look okay to me as a general feel. so i will just popped some of my thoughts.

yes bohol travel buddy is good. they will handle your stay with multi-helpful driver/guide/photographer/errand. just make sure that you be provided with a car that is not constricted so there is enough maneuver space for the baby.

take a city daytour in puerto prinsesa and do a honda bay tour or dos palmas daytour, which is more relaxed

prepare a half day trip to elnido. if you start very early, you can rest the whole afternoon in elnido for nextday island hopping

if the hotel over water is pricey, then leave it. in mt opinion, you wont miss much.

In Bee Farm, take note of what you order. They serve big that an order could be good for 2 person sharing.

All the ferries are good in getting you there. dont overburden, take the earliest that will leave.

i wish you wonderful time and memorable bonding with your mother.

Los Angeles...
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5. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

re villa escudero--have been there 3x, the last time was last year--i brought my mother there as well ( who was with a walker). it is a good pleasant tour of plantation life--the landscaping etc is outstanding. the museum is very interesting if youre into that. the buffet is so-so. the structures by the river gives a lot of photo-ops.--plus mom likes it

re: sutokil- in mactan island- went there with my oldest boy for late night grub from our hotel nearby--we rode for 2 minutes on a local jeepney to get there--near lapu-lapu monument. got there off peak hours-well after dinner hours--not the cleanest at that point but tolerable--but the seafood was fantastic--my boy and i could not get enough--the prices were pretty steep for the phils--i guess they get a lot of korean tourists who pay quite a bit---could not really recommend it because i think cebu has better, more reasonably priced and cleaner places

Los Angeles...
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6. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

what part of northern luzon is mom from? maybe there are good places there as well--one that is kind of pricey but balikbayans like is the Isdaan Restaurant in Tarlac

hawaii
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7. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

Thank you so much for all of the helpful advice! I love these forums. :)

Mom is from Magsingal in Ilocos Sur. After Palawan, we will fly to Manila then take an 8-hour(!) bus ride to her province. Trying to think of quicker ways to get there (i.e., flying into Clark or Laoag instead then busing it) but my mom only knows the buses from Manila.

I am having a lot of trouble with the Palawan part of my itinerary. Wanted to fly into Puerto Princesa, stay overnight in Sabang after doing underground river tour, to break up long ride to El Nido. Then from Sabang head to El Nido for 2 nights. But hotel informed me my children are too young for the tour. Considering axing underground river and staying in overwater bungalow in Taytay since it is not as far, then doing day trip to El Nido. But hotel says El Nido is still far from Taytay. Don't know what to do. Should I post this in Palawan forum instead?

8. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

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Melbourne, Australia
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9. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

Don't forget that airlines such as SEAir (www.tigerairways.com is the booking site) and Zest (www.flyzest.com) fly from Puerto Princesa to Manila's NAIA main airport,.

They can be cheaper than AirPhilExpress/ Philippine Airlines or Cebu Pacific: SEAir and Zest also fly into the normally less crowded and faster to exit Terminal 4 at NAIA (the 'old Domestic' terminal): it is quite basic but does the job, or at least did when I used it recently.

hawaii
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10. Re: Need help with Philippines itinerary

Thank you for telling me about SEAir and Zest! Are they good...normally on time? Are Cebu Pacific and AirPhil good airlines? I see a lot of good promo fares, but that is before taxes and fees. And some of the airlines charge for luggage too? Just like in the U.S.! Not sure who to fly with.