I met Hali last year and since then, we’ve traveled to various provinces in the Philippines, from outreach events to remote communities to backpacking in various provinces, from off-the-beaten islands in Cagayan Province in the north to lesser-known beaches in Palawan in the south of the country.
Hali has been making travel videos of our trips, mainly as personal memorabilia. Ever since we published this blog last December, I made sure to include them at the end of each post.
So, since it’s been a wonderful year, I thought I’d compile my favorite among these. 🙂 Here they are.
1. Calayan Island, Cagayan Province
This is our anniversary getaway: the hitherto unknown Calayan Island in Babuyanes, located in Cagayan Province. Calayan Island has mint beaches, waterfalls and caves entrenched in water. Best of all is a vast pastoral hill that overlooks beach coves, with unique windswept pine trees and wildlife, called Nagudungan Hill. Calayan Island looks surreal, almost as if it’s not set in the Philippines (hey, I know the country has different landscapes, but don’t hate me).
Another thing that’s memorable here is staying awake after midnight to gaze at the Milky Way above.
2. Antique, Iloilo and Guimaras
This 3-province trip is memorable in that we traveled during the onslaught of typhoon Nona and it was our first couple backpacking trip. In our previous trips, we were always part of a larger group. I finally knew what it felt like to bear the responsibility of traveling with only one other person, as well as all the wonderful stuff — being PDA and lovey-dovey without worrying about other people feeling awkward.
3. Jomalig Island, Quezon Province
This is where it all began — Jomalig Island in Quezon Province. I joined a group of friends in a wide-effort outreach event for the school kids in one of its barangays. Hali joined the event despite not knowing anybody in our group. He mistakenly accepted our organizer’s friend request in Facebook, thinking he knew her, and was then invited to come along.
Here is where we met each other, as fellow volunteers.
A notable mention
I’m actually tempted to include more to this list of our favorite travel videos but figured this will do for now.
If I will add a notable mention, it would be our year-ender trip to Sagada and Maligcong. It pained me to watch this before because it had rained during our whole trip and we didn’t get a clearing in Maligcong to see the rice terraces. Since it had been raining in our previous trips also, I started to suspect that one of us has a bum birthmark or that God was again testing my patience and gratitude. Honestly, I sulked about it for weeks.
I watched it again recently when I was telling my niece about Kunig the dog guide and was awed by the beauty of Sagada and Mount Kofafey. It’s just one of those memories that are better when remembered.
If you want to see more of Hali’s videos, you can check his Vimeo page here. He’s been creating documentaries of his out-of-town travel and outreach trips even before we met. You can also find some of his solo adventures, including skydiving in Zambales.
Happy one year, Hali.
What do you like among these videos? Do you think Kunig should be in the top 3? Haha. 🙂