book review: Jenny Han

Main Characters: Lara Jean and Peter Kavinsky

Author: Jenny Han

Genre: Young-adult fiction / Teens Romance

To all the Boys I Loved Before (Book #1), SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads)

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is the story of Lara Jean, who has never openly admitted her crushes, but instead wrote each boy a letter about how she felt, sealed it, and hid it in a box under her bed. But one day Lara Jean discovers that somehow her secret box of letters has been mailed, causing all her crushes from her past to confront her about the letters: her first kiss, the boy from summer camp, even her sister’s ex-boyfriend, Josh. As she learns to deal with her past loves face to face, Lara Jean discovers that something good may come out of these letters after all.

P.S. I still Love You (Book #2), SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads)

Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?
In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing.

 

REVIEW:

“Love is scary: it changes, it can go away. That’s part of the risk I don’t want to be scared anymore.” – To all the Boys I Loved Before

“People come in and out of your life. For a time they are your world; they are everything. And then one day they’re not. There’s no telling how long you will have them near.” P.S. I still Love You

 

These are definitely one of the few book series that I can give a rate of 5 stars for both the first book and 2nd book!

They weren’t mistaken when they said that this book will make you smile really hard! I can’t remove that smile with me while reading Jenny Han’s book. She’s definitely one of my favorite author now! Not to mention that this book gave me a lot of good laughs too, especially when little Kitty starts talking! Hahaha!

What’s good about this book is that it just didn’t focus on love, but it also talks about the value of family and friendship – and a little turn about betrayal and trust, love and heartaches, and confrontation and reconciliation. Oh~my! Didn’t you just love Jenny Han?! ♥

Lara Jean and Peter’s cute love story will definitely make you swoon and go gaga!

I would gladly recommend this book to all of you!

Way to go Jenny Han! ♥

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Davao to Surigao Del Sur : DAY 02

Since it’s our first time to travel in Mindanao and it’s just me and my friend and we’re both girls, we then decided to ask the owner of Marky’s Hostel if they can recommend a tour guide for us. They then suggested “Manong“, whom is a cousin of them to be our tour guide.

We agreed for P1500 pesos for a whole day trip via Manong’s habal-habal 🙂

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Just like this one minus the kahoy on both side, but it has the top too – which serves as a cover and hawakan – which is really good especially for someone like me who haven’t tried riding a motorcycle in my life! Hahaha! 🙂

So me and my friend woke-up at around 4am on our 2nd day, just enough time for us to have breakfast and get dress for our whole day tour. Please have your *butt* ready because it was really a tiring but fun habal-habal experience! Hahaha!

And oh! the morning ride was a bit cold too and we even saw fogs on some parts of the road. It was really awesome! ♥

So our P1500 tour consists of:

Tinuy-An Falls

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International Doll House

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Enchanted River

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I know that it’s just 3 spots, but it’s really far from each other, so the amount is just about right 🙂

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Please, see my separate post about:

  • Tinuy-An Falls
  • International Doll House
  • Enchanted River
  • Samal Island
  • Bat Cave
  • Hagimit Falls

 

Davao to Surigao Del Sur : DIY

We booked our Davao flight via Cebu Pacific December of last year. At first, our original plan was to just explore Davao City and Samal Island, but then one of our friend suggested to why not go and visit Surigao Del Sur too, so that we can see the famous Tinuy-An Falls and Enchanted River… and why not right? hitting two birds in one stone 🙂

So just this March 07 at around 09:00am, we arrived at Davao Airport.

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We took a cab (paid P300 – should only be around P180-220 if the driver used his meter) to bring us to Davao’s Ecoland Terminal. This is basically the point of transportation here if you need to go to several provinces – from Davao City.

According to our research prior to taking this actual trip (which we followed), from Davao Ecoland Terminal we should take a bus going to Magangoy Terminal (via Bachelor Bus) >> then take another bus with a “San Franz” sign-board and ask the driver to drop us at Hinatuan Terminal; since there’s no direct route from Davao to Hinatuan.

But that route was actually NOT advisable as per the owner of Marky’s Hostel where we stayed at in Sirugao. We were told that from Ecoland Terminal, we should have taken a bus with a “Butuan” sign-board (via Bachelor Bus) then ask the driver to drop us at San Franz Terminal >> then we have to take another bus with a “Magangoy” sign-board and then ask the driver to drop us at Hinatuan Terminal.

So you see, both routes are actually correct, but we hope that we followed the advise from Marky’s Hostel, because our experience was really risky and a bit scary! but we just took it as a lesson learned… “always follow the locals advise :)”

Here’s why…

From DVO Airport, we arrived at the Ecoland Terminal at aroud 9am.

Once we entered the terminal, we actually saw the line of buses going to Butuan, but then we saw the line of buses going to Magangoy as well. Then this bus driver of Magangoy told us that it would be better if we took the Magangoy route as the Butuan ride would take 8 hours, compared to them which would only take 5 hours. So of course, we took the Magangoy route instead, because we’re really hoping to reach Hinatuan before it gets dark. But it was a mistake…

The Magangoy bus left Ecoland Terminal at around past 11:00am. Mind you, the Magangoy route only have ordinary buses so imagine our discomfort from 11am-3pm because the sun was too hot that time. But then we just told ourselves that at least we got to experience fresh air again 🙂

But as 5pm rolled down and we were still on the road and it’s dark outside already, we started to get worried. We then asked the driver if we’re close to Magangoy but then he told us that it’s still an hour away. I told him that I thought they said that it would only take us 5 hours to get there, but then he replied that it’s 7 hours. We didn’t argue as we don’t want to ruin our momentum, so we just sat there and continue our conversation and enjoy the moment.

Also, once we reached the boarder of Surigao, it felt like the time slows down. Everything feels laid back ♥

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Here’s a photo I took that looks so beautiful. It looks like the great “Zhangjiajie National Forest Park” of China. It looks surreal! Sorry if I wasn’t able to really capture it :p

 

So finally, we arrived at Magangoy Terminal at around quarter to 7pm. And since we thought that we will reach the Magangoy Terminal at 5pm, we didn’t bother to have lunch so imagine how hungry we were when we arrived at the terminal.

So we decided to stopped by at one of the mall in the area and bought our take-out dinner. It was just a 3-5 minutes walk from the Magangoy Terminal, depends on how heavy your bag is ;p

And so here comes the scary part… After buying our dinner, we went back to the road to take another bus going to Hinatuan Terminal, only to found out that the buses going to San Franz that will pass Hinatuan is only until 5pm. So I called our contact at Marky’s Hostel and was told that we should probably just spend the night at Magangoy since there’s no alternative way.

But then we saw several tricycles at the Magangoy terminal and told us that they can take us to Hinatuan Terminal for only P350. The ride they said would take 1 hour. So my friend and I took it and we left Magangoy Terminal at 07:25pm.

The design of their tricycle is of course different from the ones we have here in manila. The inside of the tricycles are divided into two. So my friend and I decided to take seat separately as we have big bags with us. She took the front seat and I took the back seat. The back seat has this face-to-face kind of seat… so I took the left side and then put my other bags on the right side.

The first half of the ride was okay, because there are still houses on the road and lights on the street, but after reaching the other half, it was just BLACK. I was facing the front road so I really didn’t notice it at first as the tricycle have this front light attached on it… but none on the back.

So imagine my reaction when I turned around and saw nothing! As in it’s just totally black that I can’t even see the sky, the road, and  the trees on the side because it just sooo dark! I felt goosebumps all over! Geeez! So I told my friend about it and so we pulled-out our flashlight. My friend positioned her flashlight on her side and I pointed mine at the back without looking (I hope you know why…)

So that’s how we spend the half of the tricycle ride, me facing the front as I’m too scared to check my back because geez! I’m pretty sure that I will see “something”!!! Hahahaha! It was really a scary experience for me and my friend but we just add it as part of our so-called “adventure” 🙂

And finally! at 08:40pm we reached the Hinatuan Terminal. We were then picked up by another tricycle to bring us to our accommodation which is just 5minutes away from Hinatuan.

We reserved a fan room at Marky’s Hostel for two nights for only P250/person/night. Good deal isn’t it? Also, Marky’s is by far the most affordable and safest accommodation if you want to stay in Surigao. They have rooms that can accommodate up to 20 people. I will also recommend this place as the owners (elder couple) are very accommodating.

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We were just so thankful that God guided us all throughout our ride during that 1hour, because half of it was just total darkness and there’s really not much of other vehicles on the area that we even felt that we’re the only ones on the road that time.

But GOD is good and He just probably prepared our adrenaline for what awaits us for the rest of our first ever Mindanao trip 🙂

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Please, see my separate post about:

  • Tinuy-An Falls
  • International Doll House
  • Enchanted River
  • Samal Island
  • Bat Cave
  • Hagimit Falls

 

 

 

 

Bowling + Lugang Cafe

I just came across these pictures that we took sometime last year (or was it two years ago? hahaha) and I decided that it was too fun not to post it here. Anyway, so these was one of our many team activities  that I really enjoyed.

We decided to do bowling this time which has been agreed by many of us, especially me who haven’t tried it before. I was so nervous at first because I’m pretty sure that I will just embarrass myself considering that this was my first time. But guess what? after our game, I actually got the highest score and they were even teasing me that this was really not my first time. Haha. Sorry guys 🙂

So anyway, here’s our fun filled bowling experience at SM Mall of Asia ♥

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I don’t look nervous here though ;p

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And these was us at Lugang Cafe ♥

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It was indeed a super fun experience for all of us!
Another day filled with laughter and teasing (or should I say bullying) one another! Hahaha!

Cheers! ***

Coron 4d/3n – 03DAY (Dec’15)

Just like on our 2nd day, we woke-up at around 5:30am for breakfast and to prepare for our TourB island hopping!

And our Tour B consists of:

  • TOUR B – Php750/person
  • Inclusions: Picnic lunch, boat and entrance fees, Tour Guide
  • Destinations: Siete Pecados Marine Park , Barracuda Lake, Dimanglet Island, Lajala Cultural Village, Coron Coral Triangle

We picked-up by the same tricycle at our hotel around 8am and picked-up us at the port back to the hotel around 3-4pm.

So here are our 2nd day island hopping escapade! ♥

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Siete Pecados Marine Park – snorkeling

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Dimanglet Island

where we stayed longer for lunch and swimming. Just like the Bulungan Beach on our TourA package, the island was also deserted during our tour so we also enjoyed the serenity of the place.

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Barracuda Lake

This one is kind of similar to Kayangan Lake, but still, you’ll still be amaze how beautiful and different they are from each other. This one is more peaceful to me, since there’s really not much people when we went here.

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Lajala Cultural Village

this is just a simple tour around one of the small island within Coron where the locals live.

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This ends our Tour B island hopping! It was all fun and exciting! Can’t wait to see El Nido … hopefully by next year! ♥

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And once you’re in Coron, don’t forget to dine-in at “Kawayanan Grill Station” and try their Crocodile Sisig! Probably the best sisig I’ve ever tasted! ♥

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And for your reference, here’s the complete Tour Package our friend offers for Coron tour. You can contact them through their Facebook account, Turista Travel ♥

​OPTIONAL TOURS: Rate/person

  • TOUR A – Php750/person
  • Inclusions: Picnic lunch, boat and entrance fees, Tour Guide
  • Destinations: Kayangan Lake, Hidden Lagoon, Bulungan Beach, Calachuchi Coral Eden, CYC Is, Giant Clam Sanctuary
  • TOUR B – Php750/person
  • Inclusions: Picnic lunch, boat and entrance fees, Tour Guide
  • Destinations: Siete Pecados Marine Park , Barracuda Lake, Dimanglet Island, Lajala Cultural Village, Coron Coral Triangle
  • TOUR C – Php950/person
  • Inclusions: Picnic lunch, boat and entrance fees, Tour Guide
  • Destinations: Malcapuya Island. Optional tour to Banana Is and Bulog Is, add entrance fee of P250/pax
  • TOUR D – Calauit Safari Tour (by sea) Php2,600/person
  • Inclusions: Picnic lunch, boat and entrance fees, Tour Guide
  • Destinations: Calauit Safari Park, Black Island Caves, Panlaitan Village
  • Exclusions: – Airfare and others not mentioned above.
  • Use of snorkeling gears – pay on site
  • NOTE: Rates are subject to availability. All transfers and tours are based

Coron 4d/3n – 02DAY (Dec’15)

We woke up at around 5:30 am to prepare for our first island hopping and to have breakfast as well. Since there’s no place in our room to eat, we just brought our food down at the cafeteria, where we can get hot water for our coffee and noodles- for free. Since we were in a budget, we just bought cup noodles and biscuits for our breakfast, but definitely spends hundreds for dinner! Hahaha! That’s mostly how we work every time we are on an  escapade 🙂

And so our Island Hopping beginsss!!! Yehey! Just like what I mentioned on my first post for our Coron Escapade, we availed this tour package from our college friend who owns a travel agency. We got the Tour A&B for Php1,500/person.

So for our 2nd Day in Coron, here’s our destination:

  • TOUR A – Php750/person
  • Inclusions: Picnic lunch, boat and entrance fees, Tour Guide
  • Destinations: Kayangan Lake, Hidden Lagoon, Bulungan Beach, Calachuchi Coral Eden, CYC Is, Giant Clam Sanctuary.

So our Island Hopping started at around 8am, a tricyle picked-up us at the hotel going to the port (and vice versa), which is already included on the package. Also, please take note that the boat can accommodate up to 6-10 persons so don’t be surprise if another group will be joining you. Take it us an opportunity to meet new friends ♥

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I don’t have picture for all of our stops since it could get really tiring sometimes, hahaha, so i’ll just post whatever I have ;p

 

CYC Garden

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Calachuchi Coral Eden- Snorkeling

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Bulungan Beach

We stayed on this part for about 2 hours for lunch and swimming. There’s no other group on the island so we basically owned the place! So peaceful and so relaxing! Haven! ♥

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Hidden Lagoon

it is literally hidden and where the water is shallow, that’s why we were all so brave and went down, because we know that it’s impossible for us to drown here. Haha. And take note, you’ll be amaze how soft and white the sand is on this part 🙂

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Kayangan Lake – our favorite!

This one is super breathtaking that we don’t even want to leave this place!

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And so our first part of island hopping ended here!

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And after we had our dinner, we met Jen and Grace, the sisters that joined us on our TourA tour. We had some coffee and talked about the places that we’ve been and places that we all want to visit in the future 😉

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More travel to all of us! Cheers!

Next stop… our Tour B!

Coron 4d/3n – 01DAY (Dec’15)

Coron is probably one of the best island the Philippines can offer. It is one of the best spot in the province of Palawan, together with Puerto Prinsesa, El Nido, and Amanpulo. They said that if you’re an avid fan of island hopping and snorkeling…then Coron is the best haven for you!

We booked this trip with Cebu Pacific months ago. This is part of their piso fare and our roundtrip only costs us around Php1,300.00 each. Not bad right? Not to mention that this includes 15kilos check-in baggage already for both way.

And as expected for flights bound to Coron, we’re super delayed! Haha! And I am not talking for an hour delay here guys, we waited for 4 Hours just to board the plane! All passengers were grumpy already since the flight is technically ruining our holiday momentum! And since it’s past lunch already, good thing the management of Cebu Pacific distributed packed lunch for all of us (1pc. Chicken with Rice from Jollibee + bottled water). Well, they really should right?!

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So instead of arriving in Coron at quarter to 12noon on November 30th, we arrived quarter to 4pm at our hotel, which is just enough time for us to drop our luggage and proceed to our first stop, the Mt. Tapyas Peak. We availed a tour package from one of our college friend, but it started on the 2nd day, so we have a free time on our first day so we just decided to maximize it by going to the Mt. Tapyas” and de-stress after at “Maquinit Hotspring“.

Where we stayed:

We booked our hotel accommodation with agoda.com.ph, and I’ve been a member of the site for years now and I can really attest for getting good deals with them.

So we stayed at Mt. Tapyas Hotel – Php 5,802 (4D/3N good for 3pax)

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And here’s our room, it has 1 Queen Bed and 1 Single Bed + its own CR, TV, and Closet 🙂

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Hotel review: Overall, we really enjoyed the stay at Mt.Tapyas, since we literally just used it for sleeping! Hahaha. LOL. But kidding aside, you’ll get what you paid for. The staff was accommodating. The rooms are okay, but a bit small. We even tried their breakfast on our last day and it was really good. Probably my favorite part of this hotel would definitely be their rooftop, since you can just go there and sit quietly and just enjoy the view of the ocean and the mountains nearby. I would definitely recommend this place for you ♥

First Stop: Mt. Tapyas Peak

And after putting all our bags in our room, we just rested a bit and went out for our first stop in Coron…. the Mt. Tapyas Peak!!! OMG! I will never be ready for heights and 720 Steps! Hahaha! But everything will be worth it once you reached the top as you will have a perfect view of the Coron Island. Better to go there around 4pm when the sun is ready to go down… what an amazing view indeed! ♥

So here are we on our way to the Mt. Tapyas Peak! (P.S. Don’t forget to bring lots of water! because you will definitely sweat a lot! as in a lot! Hahaha!)

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2nd Stop: Maquinit Hotspring

So after our very tiring hike at Mt.Tapyas, we proceed to the next known destination… the “Maquinit Hotspring”. They said that the temperature of the water will definitely relax your sore muscles after that long hike at Mt. Tapyas.

Once you reached the bottom of Mt. Tapyas, there’s a lot of tricycle already that you can take to go to the Maquinit Hotspring. We rented one tricycle for Php300, which will take us to the hotspring and back to our hotel after. This is very convenient and definitely advisable, since the road going to the hotspring could get really dark and secluded at night that we even felt that we’re the only one on the road that time. Hahaha. Creepy but looks safe to me 🙂

So here’s our short trip to the Maquinit Hotspring, the entrance fee is Php200/person. The water is super hot that it would really take you time to adjust, so I suggest to let your feet feel the water first and ease to it one inch at a time 🙂

And after staying there for about an hour and a half, since it’s not really advisable to stay your body in the hot water as it could result to high blood pressure, which we definitely felt that time! Hahaha! So we decided to go back to our hotel to shower then get back on the road to look for some place to have dinner. Our hotel is very close to the town proper so it’s just convenient to just walk around. Just don’t forget to bring flashlight with you, because some part of the street is a bit dark, but still safe 🙂

We found this pretty cool and cozy restaurant near the Mt.Tapyas hotel, the food and price is okay, I just forgot to take not of its name though.

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So this ends our first day in Coron!

I will be posting our 2nd day later, which is pretty much more exciting because of the island hopping!

See yha later! ♥