Lifestyle

Here's Where You Can Find the Maldives and Greece in the Philippines

Want to go to some of the world's top destinations? You can see them here in the Philippines!
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Most of us aim to travel all over the world while we are still young. But sadly, it’s just not easy! Whether it be our meager earnings or our hectic work schedules, it seems that our fantasy of hopping on a plane and never looking back will forever remain a figment of our imagination.

But like most problems, this dilemma has a solution. Sure we can’t go around the world just like that, but you might be surprised to know that there are places in the Philippines that closely resemble some international destinations! We've listed below some of these impressive local alternatives, and maybe you'll find them to be as amazing as the original.

1. Maldives - Manjuyod Sandbar in Negros Oriental
You don't need to get a visa just to see beauty of the Maldives. The Manjuyod Sandbar in Bais, Negros Oriental, is every bit a paradise as the tropical country in the Indian Ocean. With its white sand, azure waters, and cottages on stilts, you'll easily feel like you're vacationing in one of the most sought-after beach destinations in Asia. To get there, hop on a plane to Dumaguete City and find the peace and serenity you're looking for in this unspoiled haven.

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2. Athens, Greece - Fortune Island in Nasugbu, Batangas
To witness the grandeur of Athens' Parthenon, you need to travel by plane at least two or even three times. But what if we told you that just a few hours' road trip and a boat ride are all you need to see a magnificent structure that resembles one of Greece's most renowned ancient ruins? Fortune Island in Nasugbu, Batangas, is becoming a favorite weekend getaway because of its unique Grecian architecture that comes straight from the pages of an epic about Greek mythology. 

3. Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - Santuario de Redentor in Bulua, Cagayan de Oro City
Brazil's most famous landmark is undoubtedly the 38-meter tall statue of Christ the Redeemer. Cagayan de Oro happens to have its own version of this magnificent structure, albeit not as tall as the original. You can find the Shrine of the Redeemer at Golden Haven Memorial Park in Bulua. 

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Read the full story, 7 International Destinations That Can Be Found in the Philippines, on TravelBook.ph.

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Rhea J. Bernardino for TravelBook.ph
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PRIMO.

First. Pixie dust and paper cuts – these are the first things Wendy knew about Peter Pan. Aurora first met Prince Philip when she was sixteen. Learning how to ride a bike was also a first while I was growing up, but you are probably the first of too many. The first collection of dust and stars; maybe Luna will try to ask, who was your first? I might answer and tell her that it was you.

The first of too many stars in the sky. You are the first of too many fallen leaves during fall – and you will be the most anticipated snowflake as winter comes. A dark path that you can’t see without any light, hence, you were once the moon and there are the stars that shine so bright at night. Are we too early? Or we just really want to be ahead of time? Even in a glimpse, I would like to see the two of us connect as if we can reach the sky. There are other parts of the heavens you have never saw and other oceans you haven’t laid your feet onto – but the constellations will always wait for you. Close your eyes, love, close your eyes. Start counting backward: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Count backward until you see the twinkling lights that will guide you to the right path. To the right satellite; to the right person. A first.

There are many firsts – first love, first heartbreak, first sport you played, the first thing you do in the morning, the first thing you remember about the person in front of you. There are a lot. It’s actually up to us how we will consider something as a first. So, Primo, you are already a first of too many.

Bea Alamis 21 hours ago

If you know me, and know me well, I am not the biggest fan of idyllic lifestyles. With a Type A personality, I act immediately upon whatever challenge that needs to be addressed. I actually enjoy keeping my mind preoccupied: doing university work in my favourite cafe then running errands around town, grocery shopping here, updating my accounts there, photocopying documents on the way down the street - all just in time before having a glass of champagne at the bar with my friends come evening.

And so, you could imagine my bewilderment when the next challenge to be faced was an extensive self-quarantine protocol. I didn’t know what to do when my greatest responsibility in this situation was to do nothing at all. My first few attempts to combat my consternation were very much rooted in distraction and imagination. My distractions involved conducting research, writing songs, calling family and friends, filming videos, and eating chocolate! My imaginations and fantasies were centred on travelling, shopping, even clubbing (which I rarely do) for when they find a cure to COVID-19. I did anything and everything that could be considered constructive in order to pass the time, mainly hoping I could just undertake the basic human necessities to survive - that is, eat and sleep the day through - until the next day comes, until the world is closer to becoming a better place, until quarantine ends, until my flight follows through, until I see my family and friends again.

Days in self-isolation and suspended flights turned to weeks and turned to months. By the third extension here in Spain where I study Fashion Business, I had to tell myself this shall be my new normal now, that I was blessed to be healthy, that I was tired of merely existing and missed what it was like to actually live - even if just within four walls. Little by little, I began to find significance in the simple occurrences of the day: the soft glare of the rising sun beaming golden streaks through my bedroom window upon waking up, the fragrance of freshly washed bed sheets that I had painstakingly hung to fit a relatively small clothes rack without crumpling them, the crunch and tanginess of warm toasted bread topped with raspberry marmalade, the buzzing sound of a phone call from home just waiting to be answered, to the caress of a fuzzy sweater to keep warm at night. I realised, “What pleasures to be enjoyed in the pause of slow living!” Through this continued pause, which I loathed at first, I began to appreciate each moment of the day rather than wish it would pass more swiftly, moments I had overlooked so often before the lockdown. I started to find that the challenge of self-isolation was never to pause both the regular routines of life as well as the positive emotions that came with these - as initially, I thought it meant to pause all happiness, so as to withstand a time of endurance in hopes for a better tomorrow, much like a form of delaying gratification. Life is just too fragile these days to delay gratification any further.

Life has paused, but it has not stopped. Believe that like any punctuation mark in a sentence, the pause will provide the right timing of things to take place. Till then, let us not waste our time waiting. Instead, we could be in the moment, seek substance in simplicity (that is, in what we already have), And enjoy the pleasure in pause. “Practice the Pause. When in doubt, pause. When angry, pause. When tired, pause. When stressed, pause. And when you pause, pray.”

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