13 Most Memorable Travel Experiences of All Time

2:00:00 PM Pinoy Boy Journals 0 Comments

1. I Got Stranded for 24 Hours at Incheon International Airport, South Korea.
An hour or two later, the sun was up high, and the patience of the passengers were already out of hand. I don't have a total headcount of the number of passengers, but given the capacity of an A330, we're probably around 300 in total. It was supposed to be a full flight. By 9:30AM which meant i was already waiting for 7 hours. This means, it's already past 6 hours, and this airline needs to find accommodation for us. The ground staff decided that because fixing the aircraft is taking a longer time than expected, we need to be booked to a hotel and wait for further announcement. Problem with this is that we need to get our baggage, and that means we need to pass through immigration again to get our luggage at the carousel. We cannot pass through immigration again because technically, we haven't left the airport yet. We didn't fly. So how can we arrive at Incheon Airport when we haven't departed yet. Read the rest of the story here.

2. I Shaved my Head in one of the Ghats in Varanasi, India. 
The decision to shave my head started out when i arrived in Varanasi from a sixteen hour train ride from New Delhi. People were already preparing for the Festival of the Lights or Dev Deepawali. I could feel the energy from the people seeping through my veins as i walked, and obviously out of place. On one occasion, i met a store owner who asked me to sit next to him. Believing he would sell stuff, he surprised me by offering a cup of tea for free. We people watched as he explained what the festival is about, and how Varanasi is unlike anywhere in the world. He said to me straight in the eye, "You're a troubled soul." I left an hour later, still thinking if he asked me to join him to sell carpet or because he saw my pain and seeking enlightenment from the gods. Read the rest of the story here

3. I Almost Drowned in Biri, Northern Samar. 
I was looking at the horizon, the depth of the wave began to thicken. I was walking slowly to face away from the ocean daggers. The rush of the ocean came for me. I was slipping away. Until i couldn't hold it any longer. I was strongly pressing my hands towards this lone rock to keep me alive. I was beginning to fade away. My eyes were watered down, and slowly, all the most recent experiences i had came back to me, one by one. It dawned on me that i could lose it today and that i will never ever go back. I reckon, if this was the last day of the rest of my life, i wasn't ready. Read the rest of the story here.

4. My First Hostel Experience at Inn Crowd in Singapore. 
I knew already i wanted to stay at Inn Crowd Hostel. I was busy researching for good places to stay in Singapore before i left Manila, and i wanted to try a hostel. It's funny, almost all the Filipinos i know who travel to Singapore will book a luxurious 3-4 star hotel. I wouldn't dare do that. I want to meet new people - exchange ideas, try the hard way, sleep on bunk beds, keep my patience up even if there are some heavy duty snores, pick my toiletry kit and rent a towel and try the best way i can to dress up without some random people seeing my crotch, all to save money. Apparently, the Indian guy across the bathroom of Inn Crowd 2 has the dirty habit of looking at girls taking a bath while he's busy cooking. Read the rest of the story here.

5. I Finally Arrived in Masbate - My 67th Province in the Philippines. 
What's even more unforgettable is the fact that for two straight days, ATR Turboprop planes couldn't land at the airport. I witness how one flight had to circle around twice before pilot finally called it quits and returned back to Manila. After which, i had to think quick and think of a back up plan. I requested that my flight get rerouted to the nearest and visibly larger airplane, and that is in Legazpi. I stayed for another day more in Masbate City before i boarded a fast craft to Pilar Sorsogon, then a van to Legazpi City. And just like that, i am back in beautiful Bicol and this time around, Mt. Mayon showed off it's real beauty. Read the rest of the story here.

6. My Impossible Island Hopping Adventure in Bulalacao Group of Islands, Oriental Mindoro. 
As soon as i arrived at the airport, i went to ride a tricycle to go to the van terminal. There were vans which ply for the Roxas route. Bulalacao is about halfway. So, after about an hour of travel time and passing through scenic rice paddies, i arrived in Bulalacao. It has been raining on and off since i arrived but nobody can stop me to get my thirst for adventure. Renting a boat that would take me to my accommodations wasn't so hard. The efficient team at Tambaron Green Resort was there to answer all my queries. Visibility was super low as i was cruising on a boat. Good thing, the boat i rode is way bigger than the one i rode in Roxas bound for Olotayan Island. The waves were already big to begin with, which was a sign of things to come in the coming days. Instead of rushing all the islands, i reckoned breaking it in a few days would solve my wave woes. When i arrived at Tambaron Green, the staff was there to welcome me and my company. The next few days, i got to know more Toto and Len-Len as well as the other Mangyan people residing in the island. All in all, we're about less than ten people living in the 10 hectare island of Tambaron. The meals were such a hit that the fried and grilled fish i ate were so delicious. I haven't eaten anything like it, so it was memorable because it was my first time. Read the rest of the story here.

7. My Super Stoked Trip to Mirissa Beach in Matara, Sri Lanka. 
When i arrived in town, i headed towards finding a cool place to stay. I was planning to spend only half a week in the seaside beach town of Mirissa, anyway. With relatively confusing pathways heading towards the beach resorts, i walked along the beach. With feet combing down the soft sands, with my huge backpack on, and burning my skin from the heat of the day, i looked for a couple of places. There was one that seemed very cheap to stay at. It is located on the left side of the beach when you're facing the ocean. But the view was rather a bit heart-breaking. I chanced upon another resort right in the middle of the the main beach, with huge veranda and a pool but the rate was out of this world. Then, i saw one tucked a little away from the beach. It was Sira's Chalet. While there's more work to be done around the compound when i visited, the rooms were sparkling clean and comfortable. It was already ready to accept guests even if it's midway in construction. I had to call out a few times before this man came up to me. He introduced himself as Sira - the manager of the chalet, and the name behind my accommodations for almost a week. After giving me the best discount ever knowing i was traveling solo and promised that i would be tidy the whole time i will be staying, i went to my room to check in. It was an absolute lovely time at Sira's. Read the rest of the story here.

8. I Saw People Having Sex in Front of Me in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. 
With relatively no idea how to ignore this, and my flight to Krabi is leaving in two hours. I just acted as if i was half-awake and tried to look pass them and out the door. Got my towel and took a bath. When i got back, there were there, fooling around under the sheet and cuddling. I thought to myself, "good gracious at least they're done!"  They caught me, still with water dripping over my forehead, and trying to change. We chatted for a bit. Yes, while they were naked. Yes, while the guy was somewhere. They even wanted to shake hands to say goodbye, and i thought that was really unhygienic. So, i tried to ignore and acted as if i remembered forgetting one more item that i haven't packed. I left the hostel with no intentions to go back ever again. Read the rest of the story here.

9. My Rainy Afternoon in Hsipaw, Myanmar. 
His restaurant "Family Restaurant", was receiving more guests as hours pass by. On one table, there was a couple from Yangon, next to them are a few school kids from the town, and a bunch of girls from the next town up north just arrived for a mid-afternoon snack. I helped out in the kitchen, served cutlery and order to the guests, while i sip away my cold and fantastic Myanmar beer. I asked if i could work there in exchange of free lodging for three months. We all burst into laughter. He excused himself and said he has errands to make, as he needed to deliver food to some people in the town. With pretty much nothing else to do, i found myself at the back of his Honda motorcycle, and i was delivering lunch take out with him. It was drizzling and good enough for anyone to catch a cold. But we carried on like champs. Along the way, he would stop by for a bit and point me to spots. "That's Dokhtawady River over there", he said. "Over here is the highway to the next town", he added. Read the rest of the story here.

10. My Scary Overnight Trip Experiencing Tremors of Gunung Merapi. 
I spent the next 2 days sitting on the porch, drinking my hot tea and looking at her. Sometimes, i would walk thirty minutes to the town and buy my supplies of water and snacks. I made sure to make mental notes wherever i go so i can remember. Oh, and i forgot to mention that I've experienced mighty tremors during the night. Two of which woke me up from sleep, and one made me run away from the shower room naked. The next day, a little birdie told me that my greatest fear is actual real, Merapi is showing signs of erupting. That day, i left to seek shelter on a more safe zone. That explains why i haven't seen a single tourist in two days, and three of the hotels that i've passed by had no guests. In my 40-room hotel, i was the lone guest and the caretaker surprised that i showed up. I was able to drop the room price to 30% lower. It pays to seek advice from the tourism office. Read the rest of the story here. 

11. I Got Discriminated in my Own Country at Harold's Mansion in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental. 
I've read awesome reviews of this guesthouse. A lot of foreigners actually consider this place home away from home. The place has been one of the top picks of Lonely Planet and is a very popular hideaway for vacationers. Ask everyone in Dumaguete for a fun and cool place to stay, they would point you out here. This man didn't mind me. Yes, the owner whose suppose to be the friendliest guesthouse owner didn't even bother to assist me. The two girls who were both bored that afternoon, attended to me. A few minutes later, a Dutch couple arrived. Soon after, a group of European backpackers were falling in line. All of them were greeted with infinite smiles by the owner. There he was, standing up and walking away from his laptop and going to where the foreigners are. I wondered if they were all friends. Then, he introduced himself. Ergo, they haven't met yet. They all shook hands and talked for minutes while i was there, first in line and humbly inquiring about the room i reserved which happened to be booked already. I didn't even see the owner say sorry, not even a smile. Read the rest of the story here. 

12. My Wildest Party Experience at the Full Moon Party in Koh Phangan, Thailand. 
I lost Melanie and Stephanie, but somewhere across the universe, what are the odds that they were staying in the same guesthouse. I was walking after freshening up for a while to grab something to eat and then i found them. I ordered for burger and fries as i have been eating Thai fried rice everyday. I got tired of it. The next few hours, we started painting ourselves again. This is a tradition in Koh Phangan wherein everyone paints themselves in different colors. I've seen paints of nipples in faces, Indian tribe signs, and even cheesy names drawn in their chest near the heart that says Love and of course for a more nationalistic approach, their flags! We ordered for a bucket. The bucket is good for sharing as several straws are placed in a bucket full of Samsong whisky - the cheapest, others use vodka, Jack Daniels, or rhum and then mixed with coke, Redbull and something-something. I don't want to give details. It's good. Just give it a try. I know you will like it also! I started partying at 8PM and left Haadrin beach at 10AM, More than 12 hours of non-stop bucket drinking, smoking, flirting and dancing. This is life. So what happened? Read the rest of the story here. 

13. My Enlightening Conversations and Time Spent with Victor Baculi in Luplupa, Kalinga.  
If at first it was the name Victor Baculi, later on, i would get the hang of calling him Uncle Chuper. My guide, Amboy, is his nephew so whenever we pass by his house, Amboy would check on Uncle Chuper to see what he's doing. In some days, neighbors would ask me about where i am going, i always utter "Uncle Chuper", and they would nod. Days pass by, Amboy would guide some other travelers, while i stay put and chat with Uncle Chuper. On one occasion, he invited me over to a funeral. Yes, a funeral where most local people of Luplupa would hang out all day and night, and sometimes will never sleep. Uncle Chuper would glee at a sign of "white coffee", our personal favorite. With other peeps from Luplupa, we enjoyed each shots of Ginebra, downed at around eleven o'clock in the morning, at about 35 degrees midday sun. While most of the people i was drinking with don't understand my native tongue, it didn't bother me at all. After about three hours, i said goodbye to refresh myself from the sweltering heat. It didn't take long before i rush dressing up, and tuck myself to sleep at mid-afternoon. Before passing out, i try to remember what Uncle Chuper told me the other day, "It is cheap to be rich but expensive to be poor." Read the rest of the story here.