Katja and Arne's travel stories

The Motorcycle diaries

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We woke this morning to rain. Rain! On our beach time. Dang! Not planned.

Rainy morning

Rainy morning

We huddled down under an umbrella, conveniently located in our room, down to the restaurant part of the hotel. We get good breakfast and start planning the days ahead. We have booking here until the fifth, but don’t need to be in Manila until the tenth. So we got five nights we don’t know where we’re gonna stay. As we talk about this what looks like a manager of the hotel comes over and we start talking. There is a cyclone coming towards the north east of the Philippines, but it will not be in their area of responsibility before Thursday morning. This might mean a lot of rain in the days to come. Do we wanna spend days here on Puerto Galera in such weather? And what are our options? We decide to wait out the official weather report on Thursday morning before taking further action. Flexibility is our middle name at the moment.
We talked to Don at the hotel yesterday about renting a motorcycle and of course he has a brother in the business. I got his number and made arrangements for renting one. We walk to “town” and pick it up. We get a good walk through of the bike and clear warnings about schools kids. It’s quite clear they take school traffic safety more serious than any other traffic element around here. It’s warning signs and regulations around all schools and the roads are narrowed down to slow traffic in these areas. “Don’t go after four o’clock. The pulis will blow their whistle and come running”. Good to know.


School sone warning signs

We also get the direction from Sabang to Puerto Galera city, and it’s quite simple: “One road in, one road out, sir.” Should be able to navigate through that maze, then.


Vroom vroom

Colorful tricycles are everywhere

Colorful tricycles are everywhere

We headed to Puerto Galera and turned east by south east towards the waterfalls. The roads are ok and there is little traffic. Some Jeepney’s and tricycles, but we can mostly slowly move at our own pace.
We find the Tamaraw waterfall easy enough as it is close to the road. A local salesman comes running and wants to take pictures with our camera. He does a good job and the pictures turn out great. As payment we get each a coconut and enjoying in the shadows.

We get back up on the bike and head back towards Puerto Galera. We had seen a little beach on the road and stopped there to rest. We pay our entrance fee of 20 pesos (0,35€) and are just blown away. Not from the beach, but from the local monkeys. One is chained up and the other, we get explained, comes from the jungle to visit. And the visitor is what catches our undivided attention because it has adopted a kitten. It sits there on the bamboo stick and cuddle the kitten. I let the video show what I mean.

We spend just a little time down at the beach before we need some food. We get back on the road and pass through Puerto Galera on our way to White beach. So many shops, so much junk, so little food. In White beach we find a restaurant called Rumulus and order “Special rice”. Katja order without Calamaris as she got enough squid in Quezon City Park. We get a salad first and it’s probably the best one yet here in the Philippines. The rice is also very tasty and we enjoy it in spite of all the flies. It was like being back in Perth. Man, I hate flies. If only they would sit on my clothes, but no. They have to tickle my shoulders, head and legs. As soon as we’re done we hurry down to the White beach itself.

We have been wondering wether to move here if we stay on the island. The White beach does not live up to its name. It’s pretty normal colored and it’s not all that pretty out in the water. Where we live is a diving area, but the hotel is nice so we’ll see what we do.
We swam back on the back of the bike through a sea of tricycles. It’s clear that a lot of people get off work around 16:00, but we’re in no hurry. We refuel and just enjoy the scenery. It’s said that a lot of the newer Vietnam war movies are recorded here in the Philippines because the jungles look alike. Here the jungle is really upon your shoulders while driving driving these roads. One wrong turn and you’ll be riding through the palm trees.

We stop at Viewpoint restaurant for a coffee as we close in on Sabang. A nice view indeed. A Japanese guy asks us to take a picture of him and in return he takes a few of us. All in the spirit of traveling. We grab a quick coffee while enjoying the view before riding the last km to town.

After returning the bike we do a little grocery shopping and head home. We spent some time planning the days ahead and surfing the web before heading out to dine.
We had planned pizza for dinner and had found a bar that served different food. As Puerto Galera is a divers paradise it’s a lot of d divers in the bars and restaurants here. We grab a table and order our pizza. The price make it look like one pizza is for one person’s, so we’re pretty surprised when they arrive. They’re big enough to feed a village. We smile and start eating. I manage half of mine and get the rest in a doggie bag.

The place offers some quality entertainment, namely Football. Sweet! I haven’t seen any decent football in ages and now get to see City vs Bayern Munich in Champions league. It’s a rerunbut I don’t care as I don’t know the outcome. I watch most of it in the bar before we go, but get to see the last ten minutes at home. What a treat.
An episode on the tv and to bed. Tomorrow we’ll snorkel, weather permitted.

Author: arnber

Humongen! The big guy! The man, the myth, the legend! And then theres' me. The nice guy in the house. The man without cooking skills, but with five stars on the Playstation. Boss at work, relaxed at home. What you see is what you get. Life is good. I choose it to be.

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