Friday, November 21, 2014

Manila: Intramuros and SM Mall of Asia

Assalamualaikum and Hello.

Manila trip, Day 2, 15 September 2014.

The thing that I googled the most before going to Manila is the public transport. I try to find as much as possible information on their taxi, mrt, lrt, jeepney and when doing that I also stumbled some traveler's account on their personal experience dealing with the situation. If you are travelling in a developing country, you should expect all this fuss and hassle on meters, overcharge, limited route and so on. You could expect less of this problem in a developed countries. Well, rasanya no need to tengok negara orang, my place is still lacking with a good service of public transport. 

Moving on...

We started the second day hoping that it will be a sunny weather. Enough with the typhoon. Rain is a bless but it's a downside when travelling. We took a cab to Luneta Park. But we only spend a decent 15 minutes on it. Since we kinda stuck in an agreement with the cab's driver to go to the Fort Santiago. Long story short, we didn't want to spend a lot of time in the park, afraid it will costs us hundreds.

Useful #tips for using Taxi in Manila:

1. The yellow one are mostly good (which is hard to get). You need to be careful with the white one.

2. Ask the hotel to call the taxi for you and requests the one with meter.

3. Ask the receptionist on the estimation of the price.

4. If the taxi refuse to use meter, negotiate the price before you get in. 
(There's incident where the driver changed the price 3 times when we was in car, mum was so pissed off)

5. Take different cab in Manila (from one places to another).

6. Avoid chauffeuring as possible.

7. Prepare small notes. Give the exact amount. There's one incident, where we supposed to have change, but the taxi driver avoid eye contact, act like he's waiting for us to get out of car. 

8. Always lock the door. Our second day taxi driver reminds us countless time to lock our door. thumbs up for that.

9. If the taxi driver is nice, charge you decently, a tip won't hurt.

We went to Fort Santiago in Intramuros at around 9am. It was a heavy traffic journey. But here's a thing, I highly suggest you to visit the parks early in the morning. Simply because you will have a nice walk without having to deal with crowd. And what's important you could take lots of photos without having to worry on photobombing (ugly photobomb!). We were greeted by guards with very unique outfit. Our nice, relaxing strolling around accompanied with music played in the park. The place is very clean and well maintained. 

In Fort Santiago, you could see the one of the oldest stone fort. It shows the traced of Spanish colonial and the high. Walking around, the thick wall gives you an eerie feeling. The military history and impressive architecture make it an absolute must for visitors to the city, make sure to include it in your agenda.

Fort Santiago

The next place is Manila Cathedral which is only a walking distance away, facing the main gate of Fort Santiago. This place is magnificent. This is the kind of architecture that I wouldn't be able to see in the place where I live. Such a great experience to see the amazing building. I would spent longer time in here if not because of the street vendors or some creepy local trying to sell stuff. One of the guy even said to my mum "orang labuan aku ni". And we were like 'ohhhkaayy". Sometimes we feel sorry for them, but if we give them too much attention, it could welcome a not pleasant situation. Hence here's #tips part 2: Never ever be overly friendly with strangers.

Manila Cathedral

The next stop is the San Agustin church. Another beautiful building. There is a museum that you could visit in this church. Maybe some people don't entertain going to the museum. The history and arts are insufficient to their amusement. But I reckon you spend some hours in appreciating the lovely poem of life. Why not?

Unfortunately, I didn't visit the inside of the museum. One! We're running out of time, and I learned that it could take hours to complete the tour inside of the building. Second! mak didn't want to company me. I'm not going alone then. Na ah! Whose going to take my picture hahahaa (nampak perangai kurang asam). I really wish I went inside the museum. But I didn't. Why laaa. Looking at some traveler's photo, it's beautiful. So we come to #tips part 3: Always explore the every part that you visit. Always! Even as silly as looking what brand of toilet paper they provided in their public restroom! 

San Agustin church

The foyer of San Agustin 

Our final stop of the day is SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City. It is around 8km or 20 minutes journey, could take longer if heavy traffic. This mall is huge! It's a 2 floors building divided into 2 area of main and entertainment buildings. Spare a good 4 hours to explore the mall. It has many shops, variety choices of food, ice skating rink, IMAX Cinema etc. If you walk until the end of the mall, you could cross the pedestrian bridge and enjoy the panorama of Manila bay. 

I have to mention this, Manila people are super friendly. The welcome, greets, smiles and gestures just making your your vacation extra delightful. Darlings they are! 

To be continued...

Thank you for reading.

Chuk! Chuk! (Sounds of my flying kiss) 

p/s: I i have blog.... nahhh, who wants to read this lame blog (***munching roti sambil delete post lama yang bukan-bukan)


ezyra daniel said...

seronok nye dapat pergi berjalan kat sana..

Ssan said...

hey, nice pics...
and the p.s there, deleting old nonsense posts, been there, done tht, hahaha

nuranne (formerly simplyseoul) said...

Ezyra Daniel: Yes dear. it was fun.

Ssan: Thank you dear. haha.. ikr. ehem selalu buat sebenarnya.

Farah said...

Cantiknya outfit!

I really want to go to Phillipines tapi masih belum jumpa masa yang sesuai lagi.

Niesa said...

nice tips!salah 1 risiko kalau kita bercuti kt tmpt org kan..apa2 pn nice experience..suka tgk gmb2 dan yg paling tergoda tgk gmb eskrem..hihi..

p/s : secret admire mayb?hehe