Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Pinoy Travel Bloggers "MY HOMETOWN'S ALPHABET": A Travelers' Guide

by: Mhe-anne L. Ojeda

Atimonan, Bacolod, Batangas, Borongan & Guian, Bulusan, Cainta, Cateel, Dagupan, Dumangas, Janiuay, Los Banos, Magdiwang, Makati, Malaybalay, Mandaue, Manila, Montalban,Tagaytay, Talisay (Batangas & Cebu), and Vinzons. The places mentioned are the alphabetical listings of the twenty two (22) hometowns of the twenty four (24) Pinoy Travel Bloggers, featured in this 7th Edition of the monthly Blog Carnival for the month of May with the theme “My Hometown”.

Hometown is a generic term for the city or town where one grew up (or simply got old but never grew up like me! haha). It could also be a place where one was born, or where one's family is from as in your parents' hometown, or simply a place of one's principal residence.

Get a glimpse into these hometowns from its sons and daughters, travel writers/bloggers Olan Fernandez Emboscado, Jerik De Guzman, Earl E. Bolivar, Journeying James Betia, Bonzenti Panganiban, Ivan Briñas Cultura, Claire Algarme, Mhe-anne L. Ojeda, Nicely Rom, Nina Fuentes, Jerome Baluyut, Lili Ram, Bridgette Rebuca, Angel Juarez, Estan Cabigas, Cedric Solidon, Prime Sarmiento, Aleah Phils, Doi Domasian, ChinChan Latwatsero, Lloyd Lostboy, Marky Ramone Go, Brenna Bustamante and Darwin Miranda Cayetano, as they showcase through lens and pens, their very own paradise, researching its history, its legends, promoting local tourist spots within its own backyard, recalling fond memories as they wander around, describing the many wonderful stories there, or simply savoring its quaintness, the simplicity of life.

As and by way of fulfilling our filial duty to where it all began for us as travel writers and at the same time provide you with more vacation destinations, we bring to you the story of “My Hometown”. With these many options to choose from, narrowing down your choices can be a bit tricky. Oh well, I'm sure you'll find the time to visit My Hometown, and if you do you'll surely have a wonderful pay-off!

To get you started, here's My Hometown's Alphabet...

Chinchan Lakwatsero, our Juanderful Pinoy is proud of the culture, heritage and history of his hometown ATIMONAN. In You Are Always On My Mind Atimonan, he takes us around this coastal, first class municipality in Quezon Province , and mentions its numerous attractions like the bituka ng Manok,etc.Click the link above.

Tidbits: Stayed in Atimonan for 6 1/2 months a decade ago, but only with the blogpost I learned that the people from Atimonan are called "Atimonanins" and that most Atimonanins are mix of Chinese and Spanish.

Claire Algarme of First Time Travels shared why her every visit to her hometown, BACOLOD CITY always feels like a first time. Read"Not a First-Time in Bacolod, Negros Occidental" to see the City of Smiles from a true blue Bacolodnon’s point-of-view with inputs from a local resident.

Tidbits: My 12-year old niece Mitch is one of the youth dancing the Masskara in this video.Nice to know from the blogpost that the colorful Masskara Festival was organized to encourage Bacolodnons to remain cheerful even when the sugar industry,their source of livelihood, crashed.

BATANGAS CITY is an easy day trip from Manila so Bridgette Rebuca, spends every summer vacation in her mother's hometown.In her blogpost, Bridgette sees the transformation occurring there year after year. But her comfort food will always remain the same. Ala eh! Read "A Tale from a Half-Blooded Batanguena Coffee Addict" to find out...

Tidbits: Ala eh! is the telling catchphrase everyone has associated with any Batangueno which is both passionate, proud, gallant, arrogant and can come off strong.

Cedric Solidon take us on a 110-kilometer ride south from BORONGAN to GUIUAN, two towns of Eastern Samar he calls home.He would love to see us there! Check his post "Eastern Samar Road Trip Diary" for historical facts and figures of interesting things. Convinced?

Tidbits: As a history major, it is nice to surmise the possibility that the first mass was held in Homonhon or in nearby islands, not in Limasawa.

BULUSAN is Nina Fuentes parents' hometown. Due to distance from Quezon City where she lives, Nina has visited this small town in Sorsogon only during Holy Week. Many a times, however, she was told off not to swim at Dulipay,Bulusan and Dancalan because it's Lent. Find out when she will head back to enjoy "My Bulusan" for real!

Tidbits: Next year's Holy Week would be your decade anniversary Nina!

Brenna Bustamante welcomed us to the quaint little town of CAINTA, her home for seven (7) years. Tiny and simple as can be, Cainta has a very interesting history including the Battle of Cainta and Legend of Cainta.Check this link to find out the "Five Reasons Why I Love Cainta" , says Brenna.

Tidbits: I will make sure to check out Aling Kika's and Ineng Brenna's when I pass by Cainta on my way to my aunts' place in Angono and Bingonan!

In "The Teller Traveler's Humble Beginnings" ,Olan Fernandez Emboscado traces back his passion for traveling from his birthplace, his home sweet home, his refuge - the charming little town of CATEEL, Davao Oriental. Why? Simply because Cateel has it all - beaches, coves, mountains, hotspring, waterfalls, caves, rivers, mangroves, people, culture!

Tidbits: Been to Davao for more than ten times, but have not seen the majestic Aliwagwag Falls with its series of 84 falls appearing like a “stairway to heaven”! Davao in August,anyone?.

A timely piece for Mother's Day is Jerick De Guzman's write-up about the place in the northern Luzon province known for white sandy beaches and first-rate marine sanctuaries, DAGUPAN, Pangasinan, the hometown of his soul-mate, the love of his life...his mother! He sketched a picture in his head of what he remembered about the Woman Born And Raised In Dagupan.

Speaking of our beloved mothers, Marky Ramone Go, took the opportunity of dropping by his mother's hometown of DUMANGAS (a town approximately 30-45 minutes away from Iloilo City) to see for himself the place where his mother spent her formative years. What Marky tell home mama about is in his blogpost Visiting My Mothers' Birthplace: Dumangas.

Another post that could well be in the genre of Mother's Day tribute is Jerome Baluyut's Tracing My Ilonggo Heritage where he shares his short but very memorable trip in his mother's hometown called JANIUAY in the province of Iloilo. During his long awaited visit to Janiuay, he learned many things about his heritage that gives him a feeling of completeness.

Tidbits: Even cemetery in Janiuay make it to the long list of the Nation's Heritage sites.Wow!

Journeying James, a backpacker/blogger since 2003 writes for the first time about LOS BANOS,Laguna , his hometown. Determined to no longer overlook the place where he grew up, James took us on a day tour in "Not Your Ordinary Los Banos" which tour you can also avail for only Php300 (all-in- within LB!)

Tidbits: eLBi is a long form of the short form LB of Los Banos.

"What I’ll Miss About My Hometown This Summer (are all in the photos)" is Nicely Rom's nice way of spending summer at “the beach” in her hometown, MAGDIWANG, Romblon. Due to prior work obligations,Nicely found solace in reminiscing good old summer days and sharing with us her previous photos that shows Life's a Beach! in Magdiwang!

Tidbits: Makes me want to climb Mt.Guiting -Guiting now! Call it a Nicely way of hinting hahaha!

Ok. We're done with the first half of the hometowns which I'm sure have gotten you all into that laid-back, rural feeling. We still have a number of hometowns blessed with nature's best-kept secret, but let’s keep that for later so I can reroute to the busy, big, crazy, exciting, historical, well-known, expensive, and so many other things -but never Bad of course. I speak of the neighboring cities of Makati and Manila .

MAKATI is such a fine city to live in and not a concrete jungle, claims Lloyd Lostboy in his post, Makati: The City of Lifestyle and Creativity. As he elegantly pictures and sketches a lifestyle you can either love for its finesse or hate for its pretentiousness,he leaves the choice to us to take our pick!

If there is a runaway winner for this month's most written about hometown,it would definitely be MANILA as we have three (3) proud Manileños taking us to its historic streets, its alleys, sidewalks,structures, buildings, halls, walls,tombs and old glory, just to prove that Manila, their hometown, is more than what we usually see.

For Angel Juarez the Lakwatsero,MANILA is where he was born, spent his childhood, grew up and living up to now - which makes him a true blue Manileno.Click on his post, My Manila, My Hometown to see more of our dear country's capital city more than its century old churches and historical spots which he surmised we already know.

Prime Sarmiento switch us between past and present, with her trip down memory lane appreciating the beauty of OLD MANILA – that all encompassing term for the districts of Tondo, Binondo, Quiapo and Intramuros. Let us walk through Old Manila and take in history lessons with her post Tales From the Old Manila Girl .

Ivanlakwatsero chose a personal route of MANILA with his photoblog collage and gave us a glimpse of Intramuros Walls where he discovered the traveler in him and Plaza Miranda Quiapo where he first traveled. Find out where he wants to get married and more in his post Manila,My Home.

From a broker and a runner came the runner-up (pun intended!) for the most featured town in My Hometown - the capital city of the province of Bukidnon, MALAYBALAY CITY.

In Earl E.Bolivar 's post "Let Me Take You to My Hometown: MALAYBALAY CITY, Bukidnon", he jogs us around a small yet progressive city dubbed as the "South Summer Capital of the Philippines" with its gently rolling hills, pine trees and green, green grasses. Check out his post and head out to have a scent of pines and fresh air!

No itinerary in Bukidnon's Capital City yet? Don't fret! Bonzenti Panganiban's post I Wanna Grow Old With You My Home, My Town, My Hometown sings to the tune of ten (10) good sites for every tourist to consider in visiting Malaybalay City, which our broker/engineer calls his second home!

No more snobbing Doi Domasian's long post on MANDAUE CITY: My Hometown, that takes us to a time long before those Spanish conquistadores to know where Mandaue in Cebu got its name. As you read her post, you'll know that the vine has branched out huge to be one of the highly urbanized cities in the Visayas Region and the industrial zone of the province of Cebu.

Speaking of huge, Solitary Wanderer Aleah Phils exclaims that "everything looks huge in her small hometown, MONTALBAN, Rizal. Irony? Nah. Find out what she really means by huge in A Day Trip To Wawa Dam In Montalban! Yes! this town that lies in the Sierra Madre mountain range is a good place to visit being only an hour or two from Metro Manila.

Another must- daytrip spot is tita Lili Ram's favorite place, that holds many of her happy childhood memories - her hometown TAGAYTAY. And because "there is always something to do in Tagaytay other than just taking in the view, I now understand why mamu say she Will Never Grow Tired Of Tagaytay.

Just a stone's throw away from Tagaytay is Darwin Cayetano's birthplace, his hometown TALISAY in Batangas. Let's join Darwin enjoying one fine, sunny, windy weekend dipping in the Taal Lake or simply watching the water sparkles in gold as the sun hides in the western hill. Indeed, There’s No Place Like Home:A Pause From Traveling And City Life.

Another TALISAY is in Cebu which is featured in Estan Cabigas' post Talisay: There’s Nothing Like Home. In this post, our blog carnival father declares that TALISAY CITY is his home, where his heart and soul (and even his mouth and hand) is, as he eats the best lechon with bare hands alternated with puso!.

And last, but definitely not the least, is my hometown VINZONS in Camarines Norte.My recent visit was a discovery that my hometown has so much to offer every tourists - beaches, pristine islands, and history. Click on VINZONS: My Hometown - With Places of Interest For Everyone! to find out what's for you!

So what are you waiting for? Come and visitMy Hometown”!Hope to see you there soon!

Check out the previous blog carnival topics in Estan Cabigas' Pinoy Travel Bloggers Blog Carnival.


  1. wow, taga Cam Norte ka pala. this place is truly blessed, ang gaganda ng beaches!

    good job Mhe-ann! Ü

    @marky, ano ba, taga iloilo ka pala. maghost ka sa ilo-bcd trip natin!

  2. Great job Atty Mhe-anne, what a wonderful collection of stories that allow me more to get to know more of my fellow travel bloggers, where they came from and what their hometown means to them.

  3. Awesome compilation! Too bad I wasn't able to join. :(

  4. thank you Chyng for being the first to check out the compilation and for the nice comments though you have no entry.
    @ Marky,like you I was the first to learn about our other PTB pips and the story of their hometowns. with the learnings worth ang pagpupuyat sa carnival so maghost ka ha!!
    @ Jenn,thanks for checking and for your nice words. sayang di ka nakasali. hope to read your post sa future blog carnivals!!

  5. Great job Mhe-ann! Sayang di ako nakasama next time na lang. I'll be going over the contributions tonight. I'm sure it would be a good read.

  6. Thanks Grace for checking. I actually declared I will accommodate your contribution girl! No worries about the deadline.The format I adopted makes it easy to insert yours so hope you can send in your post still ha.thanks and best regards - June 3!!

  7. Well done, Mhe-ann. Will take my own sweet time reading every blog listed here --- if only for a glimpse of each blogger's roots. I love these blog carnivals! Reminds me of how different and unique each person is, as well as how a commmon sentiment can bind us all together. <3 <3 <3

  8. My big congratulations to the host, mhe-anne ojeda. Job well done. Saka na lang ang burger mhe-anne ha. Pag balik ko ng Manila.:-).

  9. Great compilation Atty. Mhe-Anne! At runner up pa ang hometown namin ni Engr. Bon. Keep up the good work!

  10. Atty Mhe-anne this is such a great compilation. Hopefully makapunta rin ako sa mga napuntahan ng lahat ng mga sumali sa blog carnival. Ang sarap lang talga maglakwatsa... =)

  11. Thank you so much Tita Lili, Engr.Bon, Earl and Chinchan (Mark) for your nice comments. I enjoy reading all your blog posts and I gained so much insights (and techie)knowledge being the host. Sana nga mapuntahan nating lahat ang iba't ibang hometowns Chinchan. And hintayin ko ang pa burger mo sir Bon!!! thank you thank you

  12. Good compilation, Mhe-Anne. Di ba masyadong stress gawin hehe. Congrats!

  13. Great Job Atty! :D too bad i couldn't join your carnival. but its a nice compilation of a great theme :D

  14. thanks Aleah dear.Di naman nakakastress coz I enjoy reading all the entries while making contracts. Last night though medyo na stress coz internet was not cooperating and i wanted to be able to finish the compilation.
    @ Lauren Gaile, thanks for the comments,really appreciate it! Sali ka sa susunod ha. I love your blog writing,you know it right?

  15. perfect! just perfect.
    pwede na siguro nating kumpletuhin ang alphabet... konti nlng kulang. teka wala palng X

  16. getting this kind of comment from you James has put me in high spirit! thank you so much. maganda ngang kumpletuhin ang Alphabet. baka may X hometown from one of the 153 PTBs.kasi now ko lang nalaman na may JANIUAY o di ba. magsurvey tayo hahaha.

  17. Suggestions lang po Atty. Mhe-Anne. I got an idea from James, na baka puedeng kumpletohin na lang ang alphabet. I pa submit na lang natin ang lahat ng mga PTB members for compilation of hometown. Di kaya magandang idea ito. Para at least to know more our PTB berks. By this time, may kasama ka na sa pag compile. Group na kayo.:-).

  18. sir Bon, that will surely be a long post hahaha...but it is a very good idea so i'm in. maybe we could have a series of posts under different host and would take at least 20 blogs in one compilation..maganda for future use ng PTB pips!!

  19. Yehey! Ang saya-saya naman nito!

  20. oo masayang magbasa ng mga post nyo and to get to know the writer behind it - thanks Nicely for the nice comment!!

  21. Ang brilliant! Perfect idea din yung mga mala-postcard na graphics sa photos!Galing! Thanks for compiling this. At siyempre sumakto ang last but not the least, Vizons which is your home town. Congratulations!

  22. thank you Bridge for the nice, specific notes.postcards effect pala ang tawag sa ginawa ko haha..really appreciate the inspiring comments!

  23. Hats off to you Atty. Mhe-Anne, worth it ang pinagpuyatan po ninyo, great compilation! :)

  24. Claire,you're comments is much sweeter because it comes from you - my personal pick for the best travel blogger! But wait? you did not send in your entry...sayang! I could have just pick up the post on Ligao like what i did with another Claire (Algarme)..

  25. Perfectly compiled Atty. :) thank you so much. I'm happy to be the first one to submit this very heartwarming entry. :) thanks. :)

  26. Thank you Olan for the superlative comment and for the excitement in submitting the entry first!It is inspiring to read your blogpost so thought i would come up with this format!Excited for the PTB meet up in Davao in August! yeahey!!

  27. good job on the compilation! interesting to see where everyone's from! if i was there i'd add another manilenyo to the list.

  28. thanks Lilliane. yea i learned a lot from each PTB entries and felt like i know them awhile though we haven't met. so you're a Manilenya!missed your entry but understand you were busy with the RTW and would have been a good read!BTW, I'm excited to see you on Saturday! rain or shine I'll be there!!

  29. Whatta comprehensive compilation! I now have a series of readings that will last me a lifetime. Thank you!

  30. hello Gregg D' Bully.Thanks for checking this compilation and glad this helps you hit the road and visit places in the Philippines for a lifetime! I actually have my own listings to complete out of those featured and glad I have checked off my list recently Cateel in Davao Oriental.The Aliwagwag Falls is truly majestic!!!

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