Five countries, eight new places, three times in one place, in one whole year.
2010 is almost over, and at this time of the year we usually review things that we have set to do the entire year whatever task that we set and planned. In my case I would be like to look back the year on my travels. I set goal of traveling once in a month to any Asean destination. Thank you Jetstar and Agoda for being instrumental in achieving this goal.
The first month of the year I traveled to Siem Reap and Battambang in Cambodia. The beauty of Angkor Wat and the chance to experience to be a Tomb Raider was the driving force of my travel. It was a very enlightening experience for me being an engineer to marvel the ancient structures and be amazed to be standing there and imagining back during its time of construction to be there while it is being constructed was a unique experience.
In Battambang I got see firsthand the daily routine of young monks lining the street and visiting every establishment for tokens and offerings. Another first for me since I grow up in a predominantly Catholics country.
In January also I have been to Phuket for the beach. I got to experience and see firsthand the island of the movie location for The Beach. While the beach of Patong is highly commercialized, there are other locations of beautiful beaches in small islands, the rock formations, and magnificent cliffs Pukhet has to offer.
February I spent Chinese new year in Bukit Tinggi, Pahang, Malaysia. I got to experience for the first time the place where I built. Well I am just part of the project team. My company was the civil and structural designer and I am the representative at the project site. I was involved from the very beginning, from cutting of the mountain top up to it's structural completion. But since I was no longer around during architectural stage I never got to see the final product. Being there returned many bad and good experiences that I have incurred back to its construction period. It was also this project that I got to see up close the Prime Minister Mahathir and the entire cabinet visited the project site. Going to Colmar Tropicale is like touring two countries, Japan for the Japanese Garden, and in France for the Colmar Village.
March I find myself back to Malacca, Malaysia. My third time but first time to waking up early in the morning and observing sunrise while at the rooftop of an old building converted into a guesthouse overlooking the entire surroundings of century old structures.
April I went to Batam Indonesia, infamous for its sleazy nightlife and cheap shopping. Huge shopping malls here sells imitated retail goods. Actually it's a cheap alternative place to visit as it is close to Singapore.
For the month of May, I traveled to Bali, Indonesia. This is one place I don't mind keep coming back. Touring around the island is a must to-do when in the island. The balinese culture and their unique architecture were a wonder to behold. Temples are aplenty that the monicker island of the Gods is an understatement.
July was spent back home to the Philippines. During the visit I got to visit the towns of Calamba and Pansol in Laguna aside from spending time in my hometown CamSur.
August i went back to Malaysia, this time to tour around a cousin and we went to Genting Highlands and to Kuala Lumpur, and again to Malacca. Genting Highlands is a cool mountain resort where the only place in Malaysia to have a Casino.
The last one was in November at Bintan, Indonesia. The island has nice beach and just an hour from Singapore by ferry.
Looking ahead for the coming year, I might not be able to travel frequently as my work schedule has been changed. Before, I used to have long weekends due to Saturday shifting work, by next year there would be none. Comes next year whenever I have to travel overseas I need to apply for a leave and its going to be not easy one.
I have not completed the whole Southeast Asia, so I am determined to complete it in the coming year, come what may.