Thursday, May 25, 2017


One of my favorite destinations during our entire #VisitPerak2017 journey was Perak Agrotourism Resort (PATRO). The resort is situated in the middle of a huge farm and offers a number of activities to enjoy.


Located in Tanjung Tualang, Perak, Malaysia, Perak Agrotourism Resort is a serene and beautiful resort which mixes the elements of nature, agriculture and rural tourism. PATRO is must-visit place in Perak especially for those families and travelers who love nature and adventure. It provides a quiet environment as well as a number of recreational activities such as ATV, cycling, kayak, paddle boat, horseback riding, fishing, paintball, and many others. (Read: Homestay at Bagan Datuk, Perak)


The resort is owned and managed by the Perak State Agriculture Development Corporation. It is situated on a  600-acre agricultural site. It consists of 12 well-designed modern villas and a traditional Malay house called Rumah Kutai overlooking a man-made lake. It can comfortably accommodate around 28 guests at a time.



PATRO is a place where you can relax and chill for a weekend or for a long holiday. The villas are clean and huge enough to accommodate two people. Larger villas with multiple bedrooms are also available for families or group of friends.


I stayed in a villa with my Korean friend Isaac and we had a good sleep. It has two beds with a terrace where we enjoyed the view of the sunrise upon waking up in the morning. It is equipped with an airconditioning unit, a LED TV and an attached T&B.


The resort also has a restaurant for guests to eat. We had our dinner in their restaurant and their food was sumptuous. I ate too much actually. Hahaha. After dining, we had fun singing as the resto offers karaoke/videoke to its diners. It was one of the best nights of our whole trip.




The day after...

Our call time was at 7:30 to catch the sunrise but majority of the influencers were still sleeping including my roommate, Isaac. We don't want to bore ourselves so my fellow influencers Ping, Avy and I decided to go biking around the resort.The resort has a number of bicycles that guests can use. We had one round of cycling and went back to the restaurant just in time for breakfast. 

We met Yaomi also biking in the farm.



After breakfast, we started our farm tour and experience what was in store for us. We first visited the salted egg making area. Some of the influencers were able to do the process of making a salted egg.


Next station we visited was the chili farm. They grow different varieties of chilies. Some of the influencers picked fresh chilies and tasted them. I did not try it though. Hahaha



We also tried the fresh honey from the sting-less bees farm. It tasted really good. It was sweet and yummy! We enjoyed sipping the fresh honey straight from the beehive using a straw. It was an amazing experience.




After the farm tour, it was time for adventure. Some of us tried horseback riding, ATV and kayaking. Due to the excessive heat, I only tried the ATV. I had so much fun. I think all of us who did ATV enjoyed it a lot. The terrain wasn't really interesting but the view of the farm and the lake was really fantastic.



I'd love to go back to PATRO and stay a little bit longer. I found peace and serenity in the resort. It's really a great place to relax and unwind.


Big thanks to Empayar Awan Biru for organizing the Social Influencers Fest 2017. Also thanks to the sponors: Malaysia Inbound Toursim Association (MITA), Homestay Malaysia, GetFi, Destination Perak, MB Inc. MK Land Inc., Koridor Utara, Royal Belum, Tourism Malaysia, Perak Agrotourism Resort, Swiss Hotel Kuala Lumpur, Casuarina Hotel Ipoh, & Laketown Resort.

Visit Perak 2017 Blog Series:

Homestay at Bagan Datuk : Living Like A Local in Perak

If this blog has helped you in any way, please like our Facebook Page and follow us on Twitter Instagram at @escapemanila. Thank you for your support!

Although business as usual in most parts of Mindanao, traveling to the island during the entire Martial Law period may be a little bit of a hassle due to the heightened security implementation. If you have a flight during the Martial Law period and wants to cancel or postpone your trip, Philippine Airlines (PAL) and Cebu Pacific have recently announced that they will allow rebooking and other options for flights booked to Mindanao. 


PAL issued an advisory on Wednesday, May 24, 2017 informing PAL passengers holding tickets with flights dated May 24 - July 30, 2017 to Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Cotabato, Dipolog, Davao, General Santos, Ozamiz, Surigao and Zamboanga may avail of the following options:
  • Rebook their tickets without penalties within 90days from original flight date or within ticket validity period.
  • Reroute on restricted/non-restricted tickets without penalties; additional fares and taxes may be assessed, as necessary
  • Refund tickets without penalties
For flight rebooking / rerouting / refunding, affected passengers may call PAL Hotline (02) 855 – 8888, visit the nearest PAL ticketing officer or partner travel agent.

Meanwhile, Cebu Pacific has also made an advisory and reiterated that their operations in Mindanao "remain normal, with no restrictions or limitations imposed on air travel by the authorities".

For those passengers who have flights on May 25-31, 2017 and are hesitant to travel to Mindanao, Cebu Pacific and its affiliate CebGo offer travel options to rebook their tickets for free within 30 days; or place the cost of the ticket in a travel fund for future use.

For flight rebookings or other concerns, guests are advised to contact the Cebu Pacific hotline at +632 7020-888. They may also message the official Cebu Pacific Facebook or Twitter (@CebuPacificAir) accounts.

If this blog has helped you in any way, please like our Facebook Page and follow us on Twitter Instagram at @escapemanila. Thank you for your support!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017


Our 10-day journey in Perak started with a Homestay at Bagan Datuk, a new administrative district in southwestern Perak, Malaysia. It is a laid-back town with friendly and accommodating residents.


We left Kuala Lumpur around 10AM and embarked on a 3-hour journey to Perak on board a comfortable king long bus. We arrived in Perak around 1PM and had lunch at Udang Galah restaurant. It's a homegrown restaurant that offers sumptuous local cuisines. I particularly loved their freshwater shrimp (udang) in sambal sauce. It was so good that I ate a lot of rice to complement the tasty sambal sauce. Hahaha.


After satisfying our gastronomic cravings, we headed our way to Menara Condong Teluk Intan Perak or the Leaning Tower of Perak. 


The Leaning Tower of Teluk Intan is a clock tower in Teluk Intan, Hilir, Perak, Malaysia. It is the Malaysian version of the world-famous Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy. It was built in 1885 by contractor Leong Choon Chong. It stands at 25 meters with 110 steps and originally housed the water tank that supply water in the town area.




Around Menara Condong Teluk Intan is a market and a Hindu Temple. I noticed that there is a significant number of Indians living in this area.


Our next stop was the historical site of Beting Beras Basah. It is the location where the first ruler, Sultan Muzaffar Shah 1, had set foot when he arrived from Kampar, Sumatera.







Homestay in Bagan Datuk
After the afternoon tour around Perak, we headed to Bagan Datuk and arrived around 6PM where we had light snacks and met our hosts. I was in the same house with Chandra, Hosik, and Isaac. (Check out hotels and homestays with close proximity to Bagan Datuk)


Our foster parent was Makcik (Auntie) Jamaiyah, a very nice and accommodating host. She prepared  dinner for us and joined us to get to know each other. She's really nice and we're very thankful for her for taking care of us while we were in Bagan Datuk. Living in her simple abode for two nights was an experience of a lifetime.



Things to Do in Bagan Datuk


Visit Traditional Houses
We woke up quite early or our next day's activities. A car picked us up from our homestay and went to a traditional house where some of the influencers were staying. It looks really good from the facade to the interior. Just like our homestay and most of the homestays in Bagan Datuk, there's only fan available. Just basic stuff, nothing really fancy.




We were shown the Kampung lifestyle. We had fresh young coconut for refreshment.

Explore Pulau Sembilan
Before lunch time, we left the mainland to see Pulau Sembilan, a group of nine islands about 10 nautical miles from Pangkor Island, also has stunning rock formations, pristine beaches. It is also home to the one of a kind “blue tears” of seawater that appear at night due to bioluminescent phytoplankton. Unfortunately, the islands is temporarily closed for visitors to make way for conservation efforts to maintain the pristine quality of the island.






Visit the Coconut Plantation
We're lucky to visit a coconut plantation in Bagan Datuk. Of course, we had another round of fresh young coconut. A worker from the plantation showed us how they sort of "peel" the coconut for easy consumption.




They also made a demo on how to make a virgin coconut oil. It was interesting to know the process.

After the demo, we had a chance to see their crafts made from coconut by-products.

There are still more to do in Bagan Datuk but we do not have much time to do them. Overall, it was such an interesting experience. I will always remember my stay in Bagan Datuk.

Big thanks to Empayar Awan Biru for organizing the Social Influencers Fest 2017. Also thanks to the sponors: Malaysia Inbound Toursim Association (MITA), Homestay Malaysia, GetFi, Destination Perak, MB Inc. MK Land Inc., Koridor Utara, Royal Belum, Tourism Malaysia, Perak Agrotourism Resort, Swiss Hotel Kuala Lumpur, Casuarina Hotel Ipoh, & Laketown Resort.

Visit Perak 2017 Blog Series:

Homestay at Bagan Datuk : Living Like A Local in Perak

If this blog has helped you in any way, please like our Facebook Page and follow us on Twitter Instagram at @escapemanila. Thank you for your support!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Travelling is a great adventure. Not only will you have a great time exploring Asia, you’ll learn a lot about the world and yourself. It’s an exciting time. But it also exposes you to new risks. You’re travelling to a destination relatively unknown to you, where the rules might be different and opportunistic criminals look to take advantage. To make sure you stay safe when travelling in Asia, pay close attention to these safety tips:


1. Know about the common scams
In Bangkok, for example, it’s common for Tuk Tuk drivers to offer you a tour around the city for what seems like a reasonable price. But once you’ve climbed aboard, most of your stops will be in local stores where you’ll feel pressured into buying some knock-off item for a lot of money – some of which will go straight into the pockets of your driver, as commission for bringing you there. 


2. Get your vaccinations 
You also need to look after your health when you’re abroad. It’s likely you’ll need to get some vaccinations at least six to eight weeks before travelling to Asia. Book them in with your doctor early so you’ve got one less thing to worry about.


3. Be careful with your belongings 
Petty theft is one of the most common crimes experienced by tourists. Always keep your belongings on you and be vigilant. As this Thailand guide explains, opportunistic thieves are becoming increasingly bold and this isn’t just in Thailand. Across Asia, there has been an increase of drive-by bag snatching by thieves on motorcycles. When walking near the roadside, always have your bag or purse facing away from the road otherwise they’ll swipe it from you and drive off into the distance. 


4. Don’t take anything you’re not willing to lose 
Sometimes, there is little you can do to stop someone taking your bag if they’re determined to steal from you. To avoid unwanted stress, leave your valuables at home when you’re travelling and only take things with you that you can afford to lose. Make use of secure safes in your hotel, and leave essential items – like money and your passport – there. 


5. Don’t leave your drinks unattended 
When you’re travelling in Asia, it’s likely you’ll attend a few beach parties. You’ll have heard about the notorious buckets of alcohol and dangerous party activities such as jumping over a rope that’s on fire with a bunch of other drunk idiots. Of course, you want to have a good time. But keep your wits about you. First and foremost, this means never leave your drink unattended and never accept drinks from strangers.


6. Let your loved ones know when they should expect to hear from you 
The last thing you want is to cause unnecessary panic at home. It’s important to set communication expectations before you set off. Find out where you’ll have Wi-Fi and let them know you’ll contact them. Otherwise, you could miss a call or text due to the time differences. Google Hangouts, WhatsApp, iMessage and Facetime, as well as Facebook and Skype are all suggested apps for keeping in touch. (Read: 10 Travel Tips for a Cheap Getaway in Southeast Asia)


Have you travelled to Asia? Share your safety suggestions with us. 

*** All photos used are under Creative Commons CC0. No attribution required.