Saturday, July 22, 2017

The annual adventure of a lifetime contest is back, as Juan For Fun (JFF) backpacker teams officially start their race to a one year travel-all-you-can pass to any of Cebu Pacific's domestic and international short haul destinations. 

This is JFF's sixth year and the biggest so far. The annual backpacker challenge will again bring young travelers to their chosen dream destinations, for free!

On July 17, 2017, five teams were chosen to race for this year's JFF backpacker challenge. The teams were given P40,000 pocket money, their gadgets, and Cebu Pacific flights. They will travel around the Philippines for seven days. 

Two of the five teams are from Davao : Team Barbie composed of Carl, Don and Mars who are students from University of Southeastern Philippines. They are cultural dancers of their university dance troupe called Pangkatsilayan Theater Collective.  The other team from Davao is Team Juanton - Geia, Dominic and Chyn. They are best friends and have been taking trips together since high school. 

Team Barbie

Team Juanton

The other three remaining teams are Team Patsada from Cagayan de Oro City, Team Malackai from Baguio City and Team PHun from Bacolod City. 

Last year's JFF backpacker challenge winner from Bacolod City took more than 70 flights in one year. 

This year's coaches are: YouTube Vlogger Wil Dasovich, bloggers Sabrina Iovino and Kyle Jennermar, social media strategist Ren Sapitan, and returning coach and travel writer Jude Bacalso. 

JFF Coaches with Team Malackai (Coaches' Choice Awardee)

Watch as young travelers make a jump into a whirlwind adventure with Cebu Pacific Juan for Fun Backpacking Challenge 2017. Follow their adventures at and the hashtag #JuanForFun2017. 

Friday, July 21, 2017

AirAsia, the world's best low-cost airline, has announced its latest direct flights from Davao to Kuala Lumpur starting December 21, 2017. The new flight route will be exclusively operated by AirAsia Berhad. It is the fourth direct route from the Philippines to Malaysia after Manila, Cebu and Kalibo. (Read: Tourist Attractions in Kuala Lumpur)

The announcement was made by AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes at the Davao Investment Conference held at SMX Convention Center in Davao. Mr. Fernandes said "Davao has a special place in my heart. It was one of the first cities we flew to when we started our Philippines operations in 2012. In fact, Clark-Davao, which we pioneered, was one of the two maiden routes when we started AirAsia Philippines five years ago. SInce then, we have worked to strengthen our network in Davao. In this year alone, we have launched new flights from Davao to Cebu, Palawan, and Boracay, and enabled fly-thru via Cebu to international destinations such as Singapore, Taipei and Seoul. (Read: Travel Guide : Perak, Malaysia)

Hey also added, "Today marks the start of teh nest phase of our commitment to Davao. We believe Davao has the potential to be the international gateway for ASEAN to the southern Philippines, beginning with this new route to Kuala Lumpur. We strongly support the development of cities outside Metro Manila, and we are confident that by increasing connectivity and accessibility to affordable air travel, AirAsia can help play a role boosting economic growth in the south. We can't do it alone and we need airports to share in the responsibility, but together we can make His Excellency President Duterte's vision of a more prosperous Philippines come true."

To celebrate the new route, Mr. Fernandes also announced a promotional all-in fare of Php99 one-way. Booking period is from July 21, 2017 until July 30, 2017. Travel period is from December 21, 2017 to August 28, 2018.

Flight schedule:

Flight AK591 DVO-KUL 
Departure: 1455
Arrival: 1845
Flight schedule: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday

Flight AK590 KUL-DVO
Departure: 1025
Arrival: 1425
Flight schedule: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday

Book your flights now!

Interview with Tony Fernades of Air Asia.
Posted by I Love Davao on Thursday, July 20, 2017

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Below is the list of Philippine regular and special non-working holidays in 2018. Malacañang Palace has recently announced Proclamation No. 269 declaring the regular holidays and special (non-working) days for the year 2018.

The list includes 10 regular holidays, six special non-working holidays and two additional non-working days to commemorate All Saints' Day and Christmas Day. So, mark your calendar and save these dates so you can easily book a flight when there's a seat sale or piso fare sale.

List of National Holidays in the Philippines in 2018

Regular Holidays
January 1, 2018, New Year,s Day (Monday)
March 29, 2018, Maundy Thursday
March 30, 2018, Good Friday
April 9, 2018, Araw ng Kagitingan (Monday)
May 1, 2018, Labor Day (Tuesday)
June 12, 2018, Independence Day (Tuesday)
August 27, 2018, National Heroes Day (Monday)
November 30, 2018, Bonifacio Day (Friday)
December 25, 2018, Christmas Day (Tuesday)
December 30, 2018, Rizal Day (Sunday)

Special Non-working Days
February 16, 2018, Chinese New Year (Friday)
February 25, 2018, EDSA People Power Revolution Anniversary (Sunday)
March 31, 2018, Black Saturday
August 21, 2018, Ninoy Aquino Day (Tuesday)
November 1, 2018, All Saint's Day  (Thursday)
December 31, 2018, Last day of the year (Monday)

Additional Special Non-working Days
November 2, 2018, All Souls' Day (Friday)
December 24, 2018, Christmas Eve (Monday)

The proclamation for the observance of two Islamic holidays - Eid'l Fitr and Eid'l Adha will be issued after the dates of the approximate Islamic holidays have been determined in accordance with the Islamic calendar.

Save, bookmark and share!

Saturday, July 15, 2017

This is a list of tour guides and habal-habal drivers around the Philippines. This list will help you in connecting with these service providers for your DIY tours in the Philippines. If you are a habal-habal driver or a tour guide and wants to be listed, please send us an email or put your details in the comment section.


Agusan del Norte

Agusan del Sur




  • Mang Narciso / Luna / 09264770313 (he can help you find a tour guide and a habal-habal driver)




  • Joseph / Caleruega / 09255187781


  • Philip Mclopz/ Bohol & Cebu / 09052551545 (tour guide)


  • Harry Balais / Anywhere in PH / 09176274945 (tour guide)
Camarines Norte

Camarines Sur
  • Genaro Galang / Caramoan / 09994071613 or 09274823963 (Tour Guide)




  • Lyndon / South Cebu / 09755573477 (Tour Guide)
  • Redgie / Camotes Island / 09101205996 (HH Driver)
Compostela Valley


Davao del Norte

Davao del Sur

Davao Occidental

Davao Oriental

Dinagat Islands

Eastern Samar

  • Charlie / Guimaras Island / 09461966887 (HH Driver)
  • Gerald / Guimaras Island / 09084748122 (HH Driver)
  • Isagani / Guimaras Island / 09222642631 (HH Driver)

Ilocos Norte

Ilocos Sur



  • Gilbert / Buscalan / 09084792012 (tour guide)
  • Charlie / Buscalan / 09981888697 (tour guide)
  • Oliver / Buscalan / 09397741477 (tour guide)
La Union


Lanao del Norte

Lanao del Sur





Misamis Occidental

Misamis Oriental

Mountain Province

Negros Occidental

Negros Oriental

Northern Samar

Nueva Ecija

Nueva Vizcaya

Occidental Mindoro

Oriental Mindoro
  • BJ Delocado / Puerto Galera / 09759414113 (Tour Guide)









  • Jun / Siquijor Island / 09355614400 (HH Driver)

South Cotabato

Southern Leyte

Sultan Kudarat


Surigao del Norte
  • Longlong / Siargao / 09466487954 or 09184738138 (HH Driver)
  • Marlon / Siargao / 09059478451 (tour guide)
  • Lemuel / Siargao / 09059417200 (tour guide)
  • Loloy / Siargao / 09202656575 (tour guide)
Surigao del Sur




Zamboanga del Norte

Zamboanga del Sur

Zamboanga Sibugay

Disclaimer: This list is for your reference only. We do not have personal experience with all of them so please contact and hire them with caution. We will not be liable for any untoward incident that will occur during your trip. We have no control over their behavior or attitude so please let us know if you have a bad encounter with them so we can warn other travelers. Let's make this list reliable by providing a review of the habal-habal driver / tour guide that you hired both positive and negative in the comment section. Thank you!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Perak is Malaysia's fourth largest state after Sarawak, Sabah, and Pahang. It is situated on the west coast of the Malay Peninsula, sharing a border with Kedah at the north; Kelantan and Pahang to the east; Selangor to the south, and the Straits of Malacca to the west. The state's capital town is Ipoh, known for its sumptuous food and hipster cafes.

Perak offers different type of attractions and activities that you can surely enjoy. From beaches to nature and adventure, you will definitely have something worthwhile to do while in the region. Here's our travel guide on what to do and see, where to stay, and where to eat in Perak, Malaysia.

Things to Do in Perak

Experience Malaysia's Homestay Program
Malaysia is known for its reliable homestay program and two homestay programs that I have personally experienced are Homestay at Labu Kubong and Homestay at Bagan Datuk. Both offers different type of experience which will make you more understand the local culture and traditions.

See the Leaning Tower of Teluk Intan
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.

Enjoy Nature and Adventure at Perak Agro Tourism Resort
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.

See the TT5 Tin Dredge - Malaysia's Last Remaining Tin Dredge
Located approximately 9 kilometers south of Batu Gajah on the Tanjung Tualang road in the state of Perak, Malaysia, Tanjung Tualang Tin Dredge No. 5 (TT5) is Malaysia's last remaining tin dredge. It was built in 1938 by F.W. Payne in England. It was formerly owned by Malayan Tin Dredging Limited before it was donated to the State Government of Perak by Malaysian Mining Corporation (MMC).

See the Orangutan Up Close
Orangutan Island is a short 15 minute boat ride from the Bukit Merah Laketown Resort. The facility has progressed from being a sanctuary, where visitors experienced first-hand awareness and education on the orangutan, to a recognised ex-situ conservation facility and referral centre for the endangered Bornean orangutan.

Cruise at Lake Banding
One of my favorite activities during our Visit Perak trip was cruising the Lake Banding on board a traditional boathouse. It was one of the most memorable experience I had during the entire familiarization tour. There was a very limited network coverage so we had time to really talk to each other and enjoy the beauty and serenity of Lake Banding. Read more about our Lake Banding experience here.

Visit Taiping Zoo
Taiping Zoo is located in a charming natural setting in Taiping Lake Gardens close to the foot of the Larut Hill. It is home to 1,300 animals from 180 different species. These includes lions, tigers, hippopotamus, giraffes, zebras, elephants, hornbills and a lot more. The zoo also offers a night safari which is first of its kind in Malaysia.

Where to Stay in Perak

Patro Agro Tourism Resort
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. Read more about PATRO.

Belum Rainforest Resort
The Belum Rainforest Resort is one of Malaysia's premier ecotourism holiday destinations. Located in the middle of Belum-Temengor Rainforest in Pulau Banding, the Belum Rainforest Resort is an ideal getaway for nature lovers and holiday-goers who want to experience serenity and relaxation. Guests of the resort have a rare opportunity of experiencing nature at its best. Check rates and availability.

Bukit Merah Laketown Resort
Bukit Merah Laketown Resort is about 3 hours drive from Kuala Lumpur and can easily be reached through Bukit Merah toll exit (Exit 150) using the North-South Expressway. The resort is surrounded by green vegetation and is fronting one of Malaysia's largest freshwater lake. Check rates and availability.

Hotel Casuarina @ Meru 
Hotel Casuarina@Meru is one of Perak's best lifestyle hotel ideal for both leisure and business travelers. It is situated in the heart of Ipo's extended township of Bandar Meru Raya, an upcoming township which offers a complete range of facilities and amenities that will suit your needs. Check rates and availability.

Where to Eat

Restoran Udang Galah Teluk Intan
If you want something local, try eating at Restoran Udang Galah. They offer sumptuous local cuisines. Must-try is their udang (freshwater shrimp) in sambal sauce. Don't expect too much about the place, it's more of a roadside eatery than a restaurant.

Goreng-Goreng Cafe
Located in Meru, Ipoh, Goreng-Goreng Cafe offers delectable food offerings at very affordable prices. Enjoy delicious food and good music at Goreng-Goreng.

So, there you go, Perak is definitely worth a visit. In fact it is ranked number nine on Lonely Planet's "Best in Travel 2017". Visit Perak now! Book your bus ticket from Kuala Lumpur to Ipoh here.

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.
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