A while back Mike took some time off for this first week in November. We weren’t sure we were going to be able to take it with his work schedule but we kept it on the back burner. Fortunately for us, it worked out for us to plan a last minute vacation!
We decided this was the time in our lives we should get some R&R; you know, before our lives are overrun by a baby and all 😉 With a recommendation from a friend, we settled on El Nido Resorts.
Arriving in Manila, we decided to stay one night in hopes of some cultural exploration. It was a bit different than anticipated, but definitely worth seeing. We were quickly informed and reminded of the crime rate between the safety flyers and security our hotel provided. Every building we entered we were escorted through a security screening and bag check. There were also security cops on every corner (fake guns or not!).
And they still have the FJ.
One of my favorite memories here was at breakfast when Mike filled his plate with pork belly topped with gravy. On his next round to the buffet, he took the time to read the sign and realized the gravy he’s just eaten was actually pancake batter!
The next day, we began our travel to our final destination. Getting there was proof that the article we read about Manila traffic being the worst in the world was in fact true. This might calm my road rage back in Korea… maybe.
We were welcomed at a tiny airport into an accommodating lounge with delicious hors d’ouerves while we waited for our island hopper flight. We boarded a propeller plane that took us to El Nido island.
Arriving on Mike’s dream runway.
Here, we had one more transfer to our hideaway Miniloc Island Resort. Lucky for us it was a boat ride into the sunset.
The hotel staff greeted us with delicious, fresh coconut water and a song and dance. After settling in, we grabbed a drink and enjoyed the rest of the sunset on a sandy beach.
Day three I was up with the sun, which was ok because I was able to have morning coffee with this view:
We signed up for an early morning tour of the two lagoons. First, we rode in the boat through the Big Lagoon.
And yes, I couldn’t keep from dreaming of Peter Pan and the mermaids in the Neverland Lagoons.
Next, they dropped us off in the open sea on some kayaks to head out on our own for the Small Lagoon.
We then headed back to the Big Lagoon for some snorkeling.
Yes! Mike snorkeled!!
I took a short dip then enjoyed some time sun bathing on the bow.
Saturday we took a day to relax. We spent the day by the ocean, enjoying the delicious food and got lots of needed rest
Then on Sunday we jumped on a boat for some island hopping. It took us to a natural cave where we had to crawl through this tiny hole to get in.
Once inside, we were told of the history of the cave and it being used as a cemetery by the locals. Don’t worry, the bones have since been moved to the National Museum in Manila!
Of course I took a Minnie Mouse picture for JB 🙂
We also cruised to Snake Island.
There was a short hike up to the top to be able to enjoy this amazing view and get the full picture of why it’s called Snake Island.
We enjoyed a short swim along the snake shaped sand bar.
That night, my romantic husband surprised me with a private dinner on the beach outside the Big Lagoon. It was absolutely magical!
Then one last sunrise on our way out…
…and back to bus that drove us into reality.
What a happy McVacay!!