Manila, Philippines, Tagaytay, Taal Lake…

Manila is densely populated, filled with busy streets and heavy traffic,  and the locals use this interesting ‘bus’ like vehicle called jeepneys. Known for their crowded seating on both sides, people just pack themselves like sardines side by side each other. These symbol of art and culture are all around the Philippines. Some of them are painted so beautifully, they are like works of art… In this post, I do not have the arty farty ones but just a simple one to show you. Do not underestimate the jeepneys, they can take up to 20 easily. And no cheating, pay the fares as the drivers know who got up and got off.

The smaller transportation vehicle which sits about 7 and it’s called the tricycle. Isn’t it cute and functional?!

 Ok now let’s move on to Tagaytay… The heaven on earth about 1.5 hours away! Seriously we could have gone up with the jeepney but the 7 of us headed up in a mini van instead.

Weather in Tagaytay was so refreshing and cooling. Fresh air, comfortable temperature of about 18 – 20 deg Celsius was sheer bliss from Manila.

We headed straight to see the Taal lake. The best bet has got to be from The Taal Vista Hotel. We arrived about 5.30 and caught the sunset, simply beautiful and breathtaking. 
We then headed to relax at Bag of Beans known for their local coffee called pure Baraco, a type of Liberian coffee. I tried it without milk and coffee and it was very soothing, smooth with low acidity, fruity and chocolatey at the same time, I loved the taste of it to buy 2 bags of beans. Other than coffee, they were also known for their long cinnamon roll which went well with their coffee.

After our coffee break, we drove to dinner and passed some roadside fruit stalls. Reasonably priced fruits but a pity no proper packing. We got some soursop and avocados anyway.

 We then arrived at a local hawker center at the foot of the hill, somewhere near Nuvali. It was totally local, no foreigners except us… 
We ordered Apple beer, seafood hot plate, 2 types of grilled fish (whole fish and tuna steak), baby crabs, some sour & salty soup, grilled squid, deep fried lechon. It was good to experience the local environment and food but compared to Sentro 1771 and Fely J’s were not as tasty and I did not enjoy this meal as much as the last few.

Till then Manila, hope to be back again to savor and explore more of the food and sights.

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