Travel Summary 2017 – A Year Full of Unexpected Events

Woah! Who would have thought that year 2017 is near to its end? When 2017 started, I was just waiting for South Korea trip as it was the only ticket that I bought for this year. But damn, it never happened. I was full of optimism for 2017 but it started with disappointments. I could not count how many tears I’ve shed already. Let’s say, every month I always cry. I cried until last month of November but for this month of December, I told myself not to cry and I have to do something not to cry before the year ends.

travel summary 2017

January

I moved out from home to Cebu City. It was a difficult decision because I was emotional and mad at the same time. You can read my thoughts about Living Independently – What It Feels Like Moving Out and Living On Your Own?

February

The reason I stayed in Cebu City because I had to work on my South Korea visa but I got denied. Here’s a post I wrote about South Korea Visa Refusal – It’s Heartbreaking but Time to Move On.

Just because I failed to get a South Korea visa, it never stopped me to travel so I went to Boracay island as my plan B. Wrote a post about it on Go to Boracay – Moving on from a Failed Winter Trip.

Also, check out the post Let’s Go Boracay Diving Adventure 2017 as I included a video of our experience underwater.

March

Although I spent two weeks in Boracay, I still need to feed my wanderlust and that failure from South Korea trip. In my mind, I told myself I should go to Siargao. From scuba diving Boracay to Surfing Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte for 6 days – I made it.

April

I haven’t blogged about this yet. Before March ended, I booked a flight to Taiwan and left on April 2, 2017. Told the owner of the house that I would leave Cebu and not sure of coming back. Good thing that my rent in Cebu was open and no contract signed as I told the guy that I would stay at least two months.

The first time I experienced the Spring season in Taiwan and witnessed the cherry blossoms. I will blog about it soon as I spent 25 days in Taiwan. Anyway, some of the perks that I had when I was in Taiwan was when I partnered with iVideo Pocket Wifi sharing my Digital Nomad Experience.

Got a partnership with MyTaiwanTour for the Jiufen and Pingxi Tour.

I ditched my flight from Taiwan to Cebu and booked a flight to Manila. Went back to the Philippines on April 26, 2017. I stayed two weeks in Manila and I saved money on my accommodation for a week. Here’s how I did it: How to Save Money on Airbnb? A week in Manila for PHP350.

May

From staying two weeks in Manila, I thought I was going to stay a month there but it never happened. I was running out of money if I stay more in Manila. Guess what? It was my First $100 Google Adsense Income that helped me to keep afloat. Still, it won’t help me in Manila and I don’t like the idea of being a beggar there.

Found a flight to Taiwan again for PHP 3,000++ round trip which it gave me the idea to stay within a month. I found a host in Taitung, Taiwan and it was a good experience. I will blog about the hostel I stayed in Taitung soon. Here’s How I Survived Budget Travel 26 Days Taiwan with PHP 8,000 Pocket Money.

If you’re curious how I stayed longer in Taiwan, it’s because of the Visa-Free Travel Taiwan Using Japan Visa with Philippine Passport holder. But now, visiting Taiwan is now visa-free good for 14 days so I am not sure if my previous experience was still valid if you want to stay longer than two weeks.

June

Before I left Taiwan, I was able to visit other cities like Kaohsiung and Pingtung. I haven’t blogged the others yet. From Taiwan, I went back to Manila and glad to find a host in Makati who let me stay for three nights.

From Manila, I booked a flight to Puerto Princesa, Palawan. My friend adopted me for a month with her and her kids. Somehow, I was invited to visit some places as well.

Also, got an invitation to Port Barton. A 4-day trip became 7 days and I think it was awesome. Indeed, Port Barton is a Perfect Place for Digital Detox and Meditation.

July

The reason I stayed longer in Palawan is that I had to renew my passport. I made it and it was Quick and Easy: Passport Renewal in Puerto Princesa, Palawan.

Also, I took a volunteer work in a hostel here in Puerto Princesa. Check out Bamboo Hostel Review.

August

I still continued my volunteer work in a hostel and I was able to visit some places for free or with fellow volunteers. The video below was a trip to Nagtabon beach with Yen from Vietnam, a guest from the USA and volunteers from Spain.

We also visited a nearby resort at Blue Palawan Beach Club.

September

Still, I was doing volunteer work and did a city tour with other volunteers. One of the highlights was to visit Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm.

I found out that there is a yacht club here in Puerto Princesa which is at Abanico Yacht Club.

Food trip with a friend at Balinsasayaw Manalo Chicken and Seafood Grill.

Tamilok Eating Challenge at Kinabuch’s Grill.

October

Last week of September, my volunteer work ended so I stayed in another hostel for 10 days and got some discount. While working on my laptop, I was able to find a cheap rental for US$40 a month. Find out my store here about Settling in Puerto Princesa, Palawan for a while as a Digital Nomad.

Also, I was able to visit Talaudyong Beach which was far away from Nagtabon Beach. Some photos I shared on Instagram. Hoping I could blog about this as well.

November

November is my birthday month. So I had no idea what to do actually. That morning, I just prepared myself for lunch in a restaurant at Robinson’s Place mall here in Puerto Princesa. After that, I just went to VR’s Cafe and my friends surprised me this.

As you can see, I wasn’t traveling so I just stay put in Puerto Princesa, Palawan. All I did was just visiting from one restaurant to another. Here’s a Crocodile Sisig Challenge at Ka Joel’s Inato.

I was craving for Japanese food so my friend and I went to Fujisan Japanese Restaurant here in Puerto Princesa.

December

Who would have thought that I could see myself staying longer here in Puerto Princesa, Palawan? Just imagine, from June 2017 it has been six months already. My stay here in Puerto Princesa is indefinite as I still need to save more money. Staying here is inexpensive. I am less stressful and I feel so at home here.

I met some friends through Couchsurfing and glad that I am having a work-life-social balance. Have the time to hang out with people going to the beach, meeting people at a cafe and go to Tiki Bar with friends just to dance. Dancing at a club like almost every month or every week is something I never did in Cebu.

My ultimate hobby here in Puerto Princesa is just to eat a lot so I got more chances to visit different restaurants. I usually post photos on Facebook and not on Instagram.

Before Christmas, I saw on my feed that people were so busy with their holiday vacation. I felt the envy as they were flying to different countries and spend the Christmas there. Well, I got invited for a staycation at Panja Resort.

How Did I Spend My Christmas in Puerto Princesa?

I know that spending Christmas alone is new to me and this is the first time. Before Christmas Eve, there was typhoon and I was worried to spend in my room alone. Good thing that the typhoon was not that strong and was able to spend Christmas dinner with friends.

The day of Christmas Eve, for lunch I went to McCoy’s Pizza and indulge myself with pasta and pizza alone while I was doing something to my laptop. Just trying to finish an article to apply for a job. Although I never made it, I went to Kweba. I know, it was weird as I went there alone.

What’s my Plan for 2018?

Being broke for the past few months made me realize I need to get back on my feet. Not just financially but also emotionally. For now, Puerto Princesa will be my home base. Not sure of going back or visiting Cebu yet because I am not ready. That’s it for now.

Roxanne is an aspiring digital nomad. A virtual assistant since October 2009. She is a hobbyist blogger, photographer and travels a lot.

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