Saturday, October 11, 2014

In Manila for a Week

After a hectic last week at the marina, punctuated with Dave getting hit with a very nasty stomach flu, we are in Manila. Packing to leave was a zoo--with Dave lying on the couch groaning, and me trying to think for both of us. I am so thankful I didn't catch whatever he had. It just totally knocked him out for 3 days. We considered putting off our departure for a few days to let him recuperate, but we already had made a bunch of prepaid reservations. So we flew to Manila on Tuesday as planned.

A Volcanic Crater on the Approach to Manila

We decided a couple of months ago to break our trip home with a week in Manila. The original plan was to pack every day with sightseeing in this region, and maybe even taking a couple of 2-day trips...the usual stuff... volcanoes, waterfalls, hiking, diving, adventure. However, Dave is still recovering from his bout with whatever nasty bug he got. So we've scaled things back a bit, and have been only doing half-days of local sightseeing.

So far we've walked down to Rizal Park, seen the National Museum of the Filipino People, and taken a taxi down to the old city area (Intramuros).

Dave at One of the Many Monuments at Rizal Park

A Nice Display of Canons from Spanish Times in the Museum

Visiting Old Ft. Santiago

We were accosted at the entrance to Ft. Santiago by a feisty guy named George (aka Georgie Porgie), who offered to be our guide. He spoke good English and was a funny guy. Typical tourist hustler kind of guy.

Our Tour Guide George

Our Tour Buggy

George Made Us Do This

Dave Checking Out a Spanish-era Anchor

And Of Course No Old Spanish Town Is Complete Without
a Big Church!

Taxi's are cheap in Manila, but the daytime traffic is absolutely horrific. So we haven't ventured very far. There is public transportation... jeepneys, buses, route vans, and even a Light Rail system. But we haven't yet had the energy to suss out the transport options--and a cheap air conditioned taxi is just so easy.

One of the Streets with Less Traffic in Downtown Manila

We are staying in a fairly decent hotel in the older part of the city--the Park Plaza Hotel on Pedro Gil ($53/night for a private room with hot water, A/C, and TV). Across the street is an incredible mall (Robinson's Mall). It is one block wide and 3 blocks long, 4 stories high. Easy to get lost! And it's rather small in comparison to at least two other mall complexes in Manila (Mall of Asia, Greenbelt).

One Entrance to Robinson's Mall

We had a nice dinner with an old Naval Academy classmate of Dave's, Rolio Golez, who is now a prominent politician in Manila.

Dave and I with Roy Golez

We have booked an all-day tour for tomorrow, to go see Corregidor--the island from which MacArthur left as the Japanese took over the Philippines.

No comments:

Post a Comment