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holy week 2014: golden sunset + skyranch

Published July 5, 2014 by ladyemelye

for this year’s holy week break, the family went a little bit south.  our destination: golden sunset village resort & spa.

golden sunset is a resort owned by ricky reyes.  it is located at calatagan, batangas.  from it’s website:

Golden Sunset is one of the country’s premiere resort, just a two-and-a-half-hour drive south of Metro Manila. Located in the historic town of Calatagan, Batangas, it is fast becoming the destination for vacationers and beachgoers alike. Golden Sunset has something for every member of your family: a Serendipity Spa where you can relax and unwind, an aviary (Birds de Paradiso) where your kids can learn more about birds and various restaurants where your whole family can wine and dine to different types of cuisines. Finally, the vacation you and your family truly deserve!

Golden Sunset offers to its guests the perfect mix of breathtaking natural features, world-class amenities, relaxing yet exciting leisure activities and excellent service from a courteous and well-trained staff: all the ingredients of a relaxing and memorable vacation in one destination! Take a stoll along our sandy boardwalk, swim in our crystal clear waters or simply marvel at the beauty of our golden sunset.

there are a lot of activities that you can do inside the resort.  the only downside is that they have no actual beach area where you can swim.  there is just some sort of shore.  most of the waters in calatagan are like these — they are either rocky or they serve as fishpens.

they are not that strict with the bringing in of food and snacks.  there are several restaurants that serve food inside the resort.  you cannot use cash inside the resort for purchases.  you will actually be issued a “passport” which will be loaded with a certain amount of credits based on how much the guest wants, and that is what will be used.

 

the front desk

the front desk

we got one deluxe room and one superior room.  each room has one double bed, and two double beds. a mini living room with television, private toilet and bath, and an attic with extra provision for beddings.  the room was ok, a little bit outdated and some of the facilities and fixtures need updating.  also, the aircon wasn’t enough to cool the entire room on a hot summer day.  the television didn’t have cable, and the reception from the antenna was bad.

pink jeepneys

pink jeepneys

to go around the property, you can walk, or you can ride one of these pink electric jeepneys driven by the resort’s staff.  these are what you ride with your things from the front desk to the cottages/rooms that you have rented.

cultural show

cultural show

there is a teaser of the cultural show during noontime.  what we witnessed is a short number of hawaiian/hula dances.  there is a full length cultural show at night, around 8pm.

swimming pool slide

swimming pool slide

there are a lot of pools around the are, but the rooms were near the main pool.  these are two adjacent pools.  one is from 4ft – 6ft, with the  2-level slide.  next to it is a more shallow pool where my son enjoyed walking around in.  it also featured massage beds with rainfall showers that massage your whole body.

the golden sunset

the golden sunset

we strived to capture this scenery.  the golden sunset from which the resort’s name came from.  it is indeed beautiful to look at.

around the property

around the property

row of rooms for rent

row of rooms for rent

we had dinner at one of the restaurants which serve traditionall filipino food.  we had adobo, bulalo, fried fish and liempo.  after dinner and watching the cultural show (which also required some audience participation), we walked around the property.

rawr!

rawr!

the next day, we explored the “mini zoo” and the aviary.  the little boy took a lot of pictures with the different animals – both alive and statues.  we also went inside a pigeon/dove sanctuary where we saw lots of these species of birds, and even saw some eggs.

albino peacock

albino peacock

indian peacock

indian peacock

one of the highlights that we saw were the peacock.  we had to wait for a while before these birds showed their beautiful plumage.  it was indeed a treat.

after we checked out of the resort, since we took the tagaytay route, we stopped by one of the restaurants to have our late lunch of bulalo and tawilis.  and then we proceeded to sky ranch where we spent the rest of the day.

the sky eye

the sky eye

sky rider

sky rider

of the rides available, we tried the sky eye together with hubby and the little boy.  and of course, i couldn’t resist trying out the sky rider, which is their 300m long zipline.

after other rides and some snacks, we called it a day and went back home.

 

Golden Sunset Village Resort & Spa

Brgy Uno, Calatagan Batangas

Travelpros, Mall of ASIA
Tel nos.: (+632) 556-0169 / 556-017

birthday trip 2013: legazpi adventure

Published March 31, 2014 by ladyemelye

every year for my birthday, we take a break and the family usually travels (out of town or out of the country).  last year’s destination: legazpi city in albay, bicol.

side story:  the night prior to our flight, it was really raining hard (due to habagat, i think) and most of the roads already had been flooded.  our flight was around 8am, so it was still dark when we left the house, and we had to move really slowly to avoid getting into an accident.  good thing i already did the web check-in the day before because when we arrived, it was almost already boarding time.  we had to be escorted by the airline employee to the gate to expedite things.

i have coordinated with Roam International Travel and Tours (roaminternationaltravel@gmail.com) for our accomodation, activities and tours.  the owner, miggie, was very accommodating.  she asked me what we actually wanted to do while we are at legazpi, and then created an itinerary around it.  i was also able to reach her via sms whenever i have questions or if i need recommendations on where to eat, etc.

we arrived at legazpi city airport at around 9am.  we were picked up by the hotel’s van and we were brought to the hotel.  we checked in at the oriental legazpi.  since it was a little early when we arrived, our room was still being prepared.  so after the check in procedures, we had breakfast at the hotel’s restaurant.

the hotel lobby

the hotel lobby

the oriental legazpi

the oriental legazpi

once we have settled in our room, we took a nap to get ready for the afternoon’s activity.  at 1:30pm, we were fetched for the ATV activity.  we got the 350cc ATV for the salvacion trail.  since we had a kid, it was only hubby who went through the trail, and we just snacked and played around the area while waiting for him.

photo ops with the atv

photo ops with the atv

after the activity, we went back to the hotel to freshen up and rest.  for dinner, we went to small talk cafe.  it was one of the famous restaurants there which featured bicol fusion food.  the place was an old house converted into a restaurant.  sitting is a little bit limited.  of course, we had the laing/pinangat and it was indeed good.  this dish is made of gabi leaves, chili, meat and coconut milk.  they also offered the mayon pizza and the pasta pinangat, but we were not able to try it out.

small talk cafe

small talk cafe

the next day, we had our breakfast at the hotel restaurant (jasmine restaurant).  i liked the options that were served during breakfast.  it was a mix of continental and filipino breakfast.  there was not too much lying around that you would be confused on what to eat, but what they served would really satisfy you.  there was the staple filipino breakfast food (garlic rice, tocino/tapa, eggs), plus other viands and usually a vegetable dish.  they were also kind enough to give us a take out container for the champorado that my kid was not able to finish so that he could still eat it in the room.

after breakfast, we changed into our swimsuits and took a dip at the pool.  one of the reasons why i chose this hotel was because of the infinity pool which had a nice view of the mayon volcano. 🙂  the water was a little bit chilly, so after swimming and playing around, and the requisite “photoshoot” we went back to our room.

the infinity pool

the infinity pool

we ordered room service for our lunch, and then we got ready for our city tour.  the van and the tour guide came by at around 1:30pm.  we went around the city — kawakawa hill, cagsawa ruins, daraga church, lignon hill and embarcadero.  we also did some souvenir and pasalubong shopping.

one of the stations of the cross at kawakawa hill

one of the stations of the cross at kawakawa hill

kawakawa hill has the station of the cross which you will pass by on your way to the top of the hill.  according to our guide, during holy week there are a lot of people visiting this place.  it was a little bit tiring going up and around the hill, but it was good exercise. 😉

cagsawa ruins

cagsawa ruins

unfortunately, it was cloudy (with a little bit of drizzle) when we arrived at cagsawa ruins so we were not able to see the mayon volcano in its full glory.  we had fun however doing the illusion poses courtesy of the guides there who were trained by the local government to do this stuff.  it was free, but you could always give out tips so that the people could earn extra.

mayon volcano view at lignon hill

mayon volcano view at lignon hill

when we arrived at lignon hill, we were able the almost the whole mayon volcano. 🙂  hubby and i did the zipline here, and it was really fun despite the fact that it was raining when we zipped.  i think it added to the excitement.

after the city tour, we met up with miggie, and she treated us to dinner at eat all be cool resto grill.  this is a purely eat-all-you-can restaurant at legazpi city.  they serve different kinds of viands (meat, seafood, soup, veggies) and also noodles and rice.  they also have different local desserts.

we also stopped by colonial grill to taste the chili ice cream. 😉 we also got to taste other flavors like tinutong, melon, calamansi, bailey’s, and pili.  the chili ice cream was really interesting since you will not feel the sting at first. but you will once you swallow it, the sensation will be down your throat.

unique ice cream flavors at colonial grill

unique ice cream flavors at colonial grill

on our last day, we just lounged at our hotel room after breakfast and prepared for our flight back home.

one thing i would like to take note of was the children’s play place at the departure area of the legazpi airport.  my son had a nice time playing there and he wasn’t bored while waiting for our flight to manila.

glogglogglogglog

glogglogglogglog

i enjoyed our trip to legazpi.  next time i would like to explore the other things which bicol has to offer. dios mabalos!

Thammie Sy

Filipino Mommy Blogger

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