The Philippines is one of my favorite places in the world. It is an archipelago of over 7,640 islands, of which about 2,000 are inhabited. This means that there are countless beautiful beaches to explore. The Filipinos are warm and friendly people, with unique cultural customs due to the country's history of being influenced by Spain, the United States, and Asia. The Philippines is also making great strides in cleaning up its environment, as you can see from the "Philippines clearing operations" videos on YouTube. 

After World War II, Filipinos converted surplus American Jeeps into jeepneys, a colorful and iconic form of public transportation. The jeepneys were stripped down and altered locally, with metal roofs added for shade, vibrant colors, chrome-plated ornaments, and two long parallel benches with passengers facing each other to accommodate more passengers. The original jeepneys were refurbished military Jeeps by Willys and Ford, while modern jeepneys are now produced with engines and other parts from Japan or South Korea. Hurry and go for a ride, the electric vehicle revolution is coming soon and these cool Jeepneys may become scrap metal!

Check out Jiggers TV on YouTube, he is a vlogger who goes through capturing video of life in the Philippines. Here are a couple of his videos that I enjoyed. The fire tragedy could have been used in a movie, such a good capture of what happens when a fire ignites in a 4th class component city like the City of Cavite. The ISUBO MO TALONG KO CHALLENGE video is just silly, Filipinos are awesome! 

Jeepney in Puerto Galera, Philippines

Angeles City

Along with the Jeepneys, Americans left an Air Force Base in the Philippines, which is now Clark International Airport just outside of Angeles City. Today, four new terminals are expected to be completed and all will be fully operational by 2025. Upon completion, these four terminals will boost Clark's passenger capacity to more than 110 million annually. 

The American military also left a bunch of bars for R&R with cute Filipina Pool Sharks!

Late Nights and Sabong 

Sabong, or cockfighting, is a blood sport that has been practiced in the Philippines for centuries. It is a popular pastime for both men and women, and it is often seen as a way to show off one's wealth and status.

I befriended a security guard at the hotel I was staying at who owned a dozen roosters and would often talk about his upcoming fights. I was intrigued by the sport and he invited me to come along to one of the fights. The arena was packed with people, the fights were brutal, and I winced as I saw the roosters suffer.

After the fights, I went backstage to see how the roosters were cared for. I was surprised to see that the handlers were very gentle with the birds, cleaning their wounds and giving them food and water. I also learned that the roosters were often given names and treated like members of the family.

I left the arena that day with mixed feelings about sabong. On the one hand, I was appalled by the violence of the sport. On the other hand, I was impressed by the dedication of the handlers and the love they showed for their birds. I still don't know if I'm for or against sabong, but I'm glad I had the opportunity to learn more about it.

Puerto Galera (Galley Port)

Puerto Galera is a coastal town in Oriental Mindoro, Philippines. It is a popular tourist destination for its beautiful beaches, lush rainforests, and vibrant marine life. The long curve of White Beach is backed by bars and resorts, while inland, a forest trail leads to secluded Talipanan Falls. Northeast, the waters off Sabang Beach teem with marine life and corals.

I visited Puerto Galera way back in 2007, it was a great place to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of the Philippines. Plenty of things to do like swimming and sunbathing on the beach to hiking and exploring the rainforest. And with its diverse marine life, Puerto Galera is also a great place for scuba diving and snorkeling.

Filipinos are ingenious. They created a perfect floating bar where you can sit back, enjoy a cold San Miguel beer, and take in the beautiful rainbow in the distance. But why stop there? Let's add some Fireworks!💥

Underwater World

I need to go back to the Philippines and get PADI certified.