Do you still remember the feeling flying for the first time ? Engulf with overwhelming excitement and agitated at the same time as the plane took off and soar high up in the sky. The first time you saw the clouds up close, I still remember.

Flying For The First Time

It was an early morning flight bound for Manila. Every step I took as we deplane was precious. It was like an achievement I said to myself. Finally, we landed safe and I’m standing proudly here in the famous capital of the Philippines. Oh Manila! So innocent, so naïve. How can you blame a young first timer?

Flying For The First Time
Sea of Clouds
Flying For The First Time
Hello MANILA!!!
Flying For The First Time
Picture here, picture there. Seizing every moment.
Backpackers
Bulky Baggage.

Welcome to Manila!

We arrive before 6 in the morning and we immediately search for the nearest fast food restaurant to have breakfast. Visited Baclaran Church after then explore Mall of Asia while it’s still close. Typical for first timers in Manila.

Baclaran Church - Flying For The First Time
Me and my childhood Best Friend 🙂
SM Mall of Asia
The mandatory weird pose.
MOA Eye
Hello Ferris Wheel 🙂

This is part of SM By The Bay. Lots of fun activities happen here every night. So many fun rides and foods stalls to choose from and yes, it’s affordable. Trust me. So this is one place to visit if you wanna have fun on a budget in Manila. Click here for the rates.

SM Mall of Asia
I’m fine.
SM MOA
Nice to finally meet you MOA.

MOA is said to be the 3rd largest Shopping Mall in the Philippines. This is one place to visit when you’re in Manila. It’s just iconic. Within it’s vicinity is the MOA Arena where many Hollywood singers have performed already including Taylor Swift and Bruno Mars. And yes, it’s near the Airport. The plan is to explore North Luzon. Hitting 3 birds with 1 stone.

Manila → LAOAG  VIGAN  BAGUIO Manila.
Where to go in Philippines
Read more here:

Most memorable moments in Manila:

  • We didn’t know JAMS are prohibited to be carried-in so the airport people confiscated them :'(
  • If this is my first time to ride an airplane, this is also the first time I missed a flight. Fuck you EDSA!
  • First time to check-in a motel. We had no choice. We don’t have that much extra money to check-in in a proper hotel.

What to expect in Manila?

  • Traffic. It’s still traffic even if it’s already 11 PM. Amazing!
  • Lots of Shopping Malls. Ranging from low-class to high class (go to Divisoria for super cheap items or you can go to Greenbelt Malls in Makati to shop Hermes Bags and the like). Exciting!
  • Opportunist Taxi Drivers. I’m not saying all of them, but I swear to God, of all the times I’ve been to Manila, I’ve never experience paying the exact amount on what was written in the taxi meter. Never. It’s just sad. So you can try riding a Jeepney instead. But please, be always vigilant to your surroundings.
  • Racing BUSES along EDSA highway. It’s scary but I just pray.
Well, those are base on my experience. But it was all worth it. And that is how Laagan Kaayo began. I was unstoppable moving forward.

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