Gatubod Spring Resort | Review

In a tropical country like ours, cold spring resorts are really helpful to escape the heat. No wonder why mountain resorts are thriving nowadays. One is Gatubod Spring Resort in Compostela, Cebu.

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Gatubod Spring Resort is located in Barangay Basak, Compostela, Cebu. It’s actually just one kilometer away from our house. This resort is owned by the famous Qui√Īo clan in the town who also happens to own Green Lagoon Park.

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The Resort:

The resort has three pools. The first pool is what welcomes you upon entering. It has a depth of 7ft. The second pool is the kids’ pool which also serves as the launching pool for the slides. The third one is the widest and has a depth of 2ft to 6ft. It also has a mini waterfall for those who wanted a water-massage.

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The resort has two long slides that guests could enjoy. As of this writing, they have the longest slide in the northern Cebu. During our last visit, only one slide is operational due to some accidents and complains about the steepness and shape of the slide.

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There are cottages for rent and tables for rent but no rooms for overnight stays.

No corkage. Grilling station is also available.

They have a wide car park across the resort.

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REVIEW:

Gatubod Spring Resort like Green Lagoon Park is also a family-oriented resort. However, it could be crowded during weekends and holidays. My advice is to book in advance or go early.

They don’t have rooms or at least lockers to leave your important belongings. Therefore, you have to take turns in swimming so someone could look after your things.

The resort doesn’t have a restaurant so better bring your own food. Good thing because there is no corkage fee. ūüėÄ

 The staffs are friendly and approachable.

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How To Get There:

*From Sm/Mandaue, just ride a jeepney or bus going to Compostela or Danao. Ask the driver to drop you off in Compostela Public Market or in Guimbal, corner going to Virginia Foods Inc.. There are motorcycles for hire (habal-habal) and will take you to the resort. The travel from the market is 15-20 minutes.

More Information:

¬†*Entrance Fee ‚ÄĒ Php30 (Kids) / Php60 (Adult)

*Cottages: Ranges from Php250 ‚Äď Php500

*No corkage

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I hope you find this review helpful. ūüôā Should you find any mistakes or changes, feel free to contact us or drop us a comment below. We’d appreciate it.

‘Til next time!

Keep safe!

Love, Ace and Demi

 

P.S Another post about our Gatubod Spring Resort adventure also appears on Side by Side blog.

12 Songs I Wish I Could Sing For Him.

And suddenly, all the love songs were about you.

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One year down!

Okay, so today is our anniversary. I want to sing him a love song but my voice makes it sound like a nursery rhyme. ūüė•

I have to admit it, singing was one of my BIGGEST frustrations until life hit me and made me realize that I was just adding ‘problem’ to the society. ūüėÄ Anyway, yeah I did not finish the song because I don’t want to make the hubby sick.

 

Daot, if I could sing for you once more, here’s 12 songs I wish I to sing:

1. THIS IS WHY I NEED YOU ~~ Jesse Ruben

You make my weakness less weak.
You make the bottom less deep.
You make the waiting feel shorter.
You make my crazy feel normal, every time.
You are the who, love is the what, and this is the why. 

 2. PILLOWTALK ~~ Zayn Malik

Nobody but you, ‘body but me
‘Body but us, bodies together
I love to hold you close, tonight and always
I love to wake up next to you

3. COLD WATER ~~ Major Lazer (feat. Justin Bieber & MO)

And if you feel you’re sinking,
I will jump right over into cold, cold water for you
And although time may take us into different places
I will still be patient with you
And I hope you know

4. SAY YOU WON’T LET GO ~~ James Arthur

I’m gonna love you till
My lungs give out.
I promise till death we part like in our vows.
So I wrote this song for you, now everybody knows
‘Cause now it’s just you and me till we’re grey and old
Just say you won’t let go
Just say you won’t let go

5. LET ME LOVE YOU ~~ DJ Snake (feat. Justin Bieber)

Don’t fall asleep
At the wheel, we’ve got a million miles ahead of us
Miles ahead of us
All that we need
Is a rude awakening to know we’re good enough
Know we’re good enough

6. PERFECT STRANGERS ~~ Jonas Blue (feat. JP Cooper)

Who knows the secret tomorrow will hold?
We don’t really need to know
‘Cause you’re here with me now, I don’t want you to go
You’re here with me now, I don’t want you to go

7. THINKING OUT LOUD ~~ Ed Sheeran

Darling, I will be loving you ’til we’re 70
And baby my heart could still fall as hard at 23
And I’m thinking ’bout how people fall in love in mysterious ways
Maybe just the touch of a hand
Oh me I fall in love with you every single day
And I just wanna tell you I am

8. ALL OF ME ~~ John Legend

Cause all of me, loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges,
All your perfect imperfections
Give your all to me
I’ll give my all to you
You’re my end and my beginning
Even when I lose I’m winning

9. SWEET CREATURE ~~ Harry Styles

Sweet creature, sweet creature
Wherever I go, you bring me home
Sweet creature, sweet creature
When I run out of road, you bring me home

10. SHAPE OF YOU ~~ Ed Sheeran

I’m in love with your body
Every day discovering something brand new
I’m in love with the shape of you

11. IN CASE YOU DIDN’T KNOW ~~ Brett Young

You’ve got all of me
I belong to you
Yeah, you’re my everything

In case you didn’t know
I’m crazy bout you
I would be lying if I said
That I could live this life without you

12. ISSUES ~~ Julia Michaels

‘Cause I got issues
But you got ’em too
So give ’em all to me
And I’ll give mine to you
Bask in the glory
Of all our problems
‘Cause we got the kind of love
It takes to solve ’em

Yeah, I got issues
And one of them is how bad I need you.

 

 

Island Living | The Sipaway Island Way.

“Your life is an island separated from all other islands and continents. Regardless of how many boats you send to other shores or how many ships arrive your shores, you yourself are an island separated by its own pains, secluded in its happiness.” ~ Kahlil Gibram

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When people hear the word island, the image of a wide stretched beach, the turquoise water, and the fine white sand surely comes to our mind first. We forget that this is not what an island is all about.

The island is the people, their way of living and their laid-back life.

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A photo of a father and son from taking a dip in the beach.

Today, let us take you to Sipaway Island — a small island in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental. This is also geographically known as Refugio Island.

Sipaway can be reached by a¬†bangka (an outriggered boat) from San Carlos City for about 10 minutes. The bangka¬†will dock in any of the five ports in the island depending on the majority of the passengers’ destination. (Yes, you’ve read it right. The island has five ports in different area but the most used are the Dap-dap and Ermita ports.)

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Bangkas ready for a fluvial parade docked in Ermita Port.

Since the¬†hubby’s relatives who are living in Negros wanted to meet me, we decided to pay them a short visit. When his family learned that we will be coming, they thought of having a mini-reunion in Sipaway.

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Sipaway Island

Hubby toured me around the place on our second day.

Sipaway Island has a land area that only stretches 7 kilometers in length and 1.5 kilometers wide. It only consists of two barangays (district), San Juan and Ermita. These two barangays are connected with well-paved concrete roads.

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A well-paved road connecting the two districts.

The mode of transportation in the area¬†are tricycles and motorcycles. But there are private resorts in the area that offer bicycles for rent. Hubby and I rented a motorbike to tour the whole place¬†because our body were not in good condition to cycle. I personally thought it was a good choice knowing that it was a Sunday and we will be going back to Cebu in the afternoon because we have to work on the next day. It really saved us time and energy. ūüėÄ

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Ace and Demi in Sipaway Island 2017

Our first stop was the oldest Balete Tree in the island. The last time Ace visited Sipaway was 10 years ago, so he was also surprised that the tree is now fenced inside San Juan Elementary School. The school was closed so we were not able to get inside.

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A 200-century old Balete Tree in Barangay San Juan.

As we continued our tour to the tip of the island, I chanced upon this couple who came from fishing something for lunch. How sweet is that?

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A husband and wife coming from a day of fishing.

Sipaway island has a population of about 4000 people. The primary source of living is fishing and extracting oil from coconut’s dried meat (locally called copra).

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Lush coconut vegetation in the area.

Recently, the place already have a 24-hour supply of electricity. They also have a supply of clean drinking water from the mainland San Carlos City, although not all households have their own faucets yet. So some have to wait in line to fetch water from a public faucet in designated areas. At least, now they don’t have to go to the mainland to fetch for water.

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Tatay waiting for his turn to fetch water from a public faucet.

We also learned that there is a resort in the island which is frequented by visitors. It is the Whispering Palms Island Resort. We dropped by here to supposedly just eat our lunch but we had to pay an entrance fee apart from our food. We were not going stay in the resort for long due to time constraints so we aborted our plan to have lunch inside.

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Whispering Palms Island Resort.

As we continued our tour, I saw the idyllic life of Sipawaynons. Actually, there was this part of me which envied their simple living. In every eyes of the people there, I saw contentment, I saw happiness.

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Priceless laughter from an old woman skinning firewoods to sell. Photo from Sipaway Divers.

I witnessed how peaceful this little community is. I saw how they do things that I’m pretty sure they’d been doing everyday but I did not see boredom.

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A little girl swimming with her pet. 

They don’t have the luxury to buy expensive things but they have time, precious time. Everybody knows almost everyone in this 7-kilometer community. I love that! I love how they know the people in the other side of the island contrary to not knowing your ‘roommate’ in city.

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That afternoon talk in the neighborhood. 

They have narrow streets but there is no traffic. The kids have no expensive gadgets but they’re happily playing hide and seek and other traditional games.

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Kids riding a pedal cab with their pet. 

Basically, the people in this island don’t have the modernities that we people in the big cities have. But, look how they are happy and contented with their laid back life.

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A traditional hut in the island.

Look how rich the kids with childhood fun, look how rich the people with peace and tranquility, look how rich they are with love and smiles.

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Tricycle — primary mode of transport.¬†

Our short sojourn in the island taught us to appreciate the life we have. It taught us contentment. It taught us to value our work, the people around us, the precious time we have for each other. 

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Treat yourself with the traditional coconut red wine locally called tuba. 

We may be a small island, but we are not a small people. ~Edward Heath

 

We hope you enjoyed our Sipaway Island venture.

‘Til next time.

Keep safe!

Love, Ace and Demi.

A Photo Diary | How Surigao Swept Off Our Feet.

Don’t listen to what they say. Go see it!!!

Our first week of May was worthily spent in SURIGAO along with new awesome friends. The place was in our bucket list but we did not expect to visit it it soon. Somehow, blessings made our way to the City of Island Adventures. (And this marked our first venture outside the Visayas region.)

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An old friend invited us to visit her hometown. It so happen that Ace and I had plans to go to Negros and Bantayan Islands but the enticing places in Surigao made us change our minds.

I must say, we had made the BEST decision ever.

Surigao swept us off our feet since¬†the first day and all throughout our¬†sojourn. From the amazing fjord of Bucas Grande and Sohoton Cove, the untouched islets¬†of Dinagat Islands, the awe-inspiring sight of Tinuy-an Falls, to the beguiling beauty of Enchanted River — everything went beyond our expectations.

Here’s a photo diary that will show you how the City of Island Adventures made us fall inlove.

How would you like to build your house in an island overlooking other tiny islets and the cerulean sea?

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A stunning vista of the islets from an abandoned rest house in Dinagat Islands.

Or maybe have the island all by yourself?

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Another picturesque spot on the other side of the abandoned rest house.

When you have the fine sand, the calm sea and a wonderful… body? (Excuse me!)

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The fine sandbar in one of the islets of Dinagat Islands. (Duyos Beach)

That Palawan dream… Surigao made it¬†happen. ūüėÄ

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A rock formation that serves as home of some Kalaw birds or the Philippine Hornbills in another Dinagat Islands’ islet. (Kabukungan Islet.)

Entered a new world through Bucas Grande and got lost with the confusing inlets. Explored the hidden gems of Sohoton from caves to coves.

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A fjord to Bucas Grande.

Saw amazing rock formations that we’ve never seen before and heard folklores from a local tourist guide.

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Unique rock wall in Sohoton Cove.

Plunged and communed with nature. Or chose to swim with thousands of stingless jellyfish.

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Dipping in the water surrounded by stingless jellyfish.

Ticked off the widest waterfall in the country from our bucket list.

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A fascinating sight of the country’s widest waterfall — Tinuy-an Falls. (The 2nd tier.)

Chased the cascades of this multi-tiered waterfalls. And treated ourselves with a massage from the water curtain.

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The cascades of Tinuy-an’s first tier.

Dabbed a ‘squadgoal pose’ with the gang.

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Squad goals? Yeah, not without this pose. ūüėÄ

And stroke more squadgoal poses…. ūüėÄ

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Squad pose with Tinuy-an Falls’ stamp.

Admired the mystifying beauty of Hinatuan’s Enchanted River.

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A vibrant scene of Hinatuan’s Enchanted River. Simply enchanting.

Repleted our eyes as we stared at the enchanting river to our hearts’ content. Also enjoyed swimming and going with the river flow.

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Staring at the water to her heart’s content.

Whilst our¬†fleeting stay in Surigao we couldn’t help but ¬†DECLARE to come back for more, soon. The city surely has more gems yet to be discovered.

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Thank you for the wonderful experience Surigao. ’til our next visit on your land.

Cheers!

With love, Ace and Demi

 

P.S A huge thanks to our friend Annel Hope Mayuga and to her wonderful family for adopting us during our four days stay in Surigao. Thank you for your warm welcome and for making this venture possible. ’til next time.

Why You Should Travel With Your Significant Other?

Traveling is one of the most amazing and coolest thing that Ace and I have done together. As much as our parents advice us to start saving for the future we can’t help put a trip on our weekend schedule. (Sorry, Ma.)

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Osmena Peak

Here are some reasons why you should travel with your partner in life base on our personal experience together:

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Chasing the rivers of Catmon, Cebu.
  • Learning to¬†understand and adjust to each other’s limitations.

Traveling means getting out from our¬†comfort zone. Every place we¬†visit always offers something different — different people, different challenges. Some of these situations¬†test us¬†to our¬†limits and unknowingly pushed that red button on our head. This is the time when we get to know each other beyond the corners of our bedroom. Ace knows just how to support me¬†when I’m having a hard time carrying my backpack or when crossing the river becomes¬†a struggle. I know just how to make him keep his composure when he gets mad over some mean staff at the tourism department. Basically, we learned the art of balancing each other’s limits.

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Mt. Naupa
  • ¬†Traveling together is economical.

We have to admit it, the only thing that separates us and our destination is BUDGET. But, common… Paulo Coelho once said, “Travel is never a matter of money but of courage.” So, we have to learn to take risk. ūüėÄ ¬†When¬†we travel together, our expenses are halved making it economical. Better than traveling alone and paying the hotel all by myself.

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Sumilon Island, Oslob
  • Happiness is better shared.

Every place crashed on our list brings a rewarding feeling of happiness. And the feeling becomes double when we know we do it together. That fulfillment when you climbed the summit of a mountain alone is far compared to reaching the peak together. Jump shots are better done with him than doing it alone.

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Sumilon Island, Oslob
  • Improved intimacy.

Someone asked us if we still have time for sexual intimacy after a long week of working in the corporate world and then spending our weekends out of town. Yeah, the question is a bit off the limit but we’re aware many are wondering. :p (Of course, we do. Why not? We’re on the same roof people, in case you forget.)¬†We know we’re both busy working on weekdays but we don’t consider our¬†weekend getaways “busy days”. It’s a “getaway“. It’s our way of destressing and unwinding, in such way we improve our sexual relationship in the process. Spending a night in the mountain or in the beach? Why not? It’s a chance to get adventurous. :p

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Baywalk, Camotes Island
  • Waiting¬†don’t get boring.

How could we tolerate falling in line to get our ticket, a¬†12-hour ride on the boat or delayed flights and etc.? Simple, we have each other’s company. And we know just how to entertain each other. Nothing beats his corny jokes and my never ending stories.

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Mining Demo, Coal Mountain Resort, Argao
  • Two heads are better than one.

Traveling together means sharing decisions. Sometimes it becomes complicated when our choices are different but we also learned to resolve it. It makes the work easier when one is thinking where to eat and the other is what to eat. ūüėÄ Simple situation that requires decisio making could occur when traveling. And it is always better when you have someone with you who could make it when your head refuse to work.

 

We hope this inspires you to pack your bags, grab your partners hand and start going out of your bedroom. ūüėÄ

‘Til next time.

Keep safe.

Love, Ace and Demi.

 

Temple of Leah | Of Love, Devotion and Architecture

And his love was too strong that it became the pillars of the temple.

Truly, love does wonders. It’s so powerful that it goes beyond¬†a bouquet of roses, a romantic picnic or a dinner in the fanciest restaurant, a diamond ring or a strand of pearls. Remember Taj Mahal in India, Swallow’s Nest Castle above the waters of the Black Sea, and the Boldt Castle in upstate New York? What do they have in common? Yes, they are all built out of love. ‚̧

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Temple of Leah

Cebu also prides this magnificent landmark Temple of Leah¬†as a testament of an architecture-romantic Mr. Teodorico S. Adarna’s undying love and devotion to his wife – Leah.

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Temple of Leah, Cebu

Perched on the highlands of the city, Temple of Leah continously draws tourist because of it’s splendiferous¬†architecture similar to that of Rome and Greece. Knowing that this is built in the name of love is another thing that invites people’s curiousity.

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The girls — Tin, Gichelle, Demi, Louise and Daisy. (L-R)¬†

Some time in January, after our visit in the botanical garden of Terrazas de Flores, we dropped by this temple to see how lucky Leah must be.

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Temple of Leah.

We were collected Php50 each as an entrance fee. The temple was not done yet but it is already open to public. We went there on a weekday so there were not too many people at that time.

 

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Ace in the Temple of Leah. 

The edifice¬†resembles¬†Rome classical structures,¬†inspired by Leah’s travel¬†to¬†Rome. It is very evident with the rectangular designs, the Doric columns, the podium and the altar.

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The shrine. 

A huge bronze statue of Leah was built in the altar. This spells Mr Adarna’s devotion to her that he treated her¬†like a goddess.

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Leah V. Adarna

This temple was meant to be a repository of Leah’s items which she gathered from her travels. According to her daughter, Arlene, her mom was a collector. Before she died, she worried where to put all her collections. Her good husband promised to build this temple to store all her things. Now, this shrine serves as a museum of Leah’s things. However, the museum was not yet open for the public during our visit.

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Demi in the Temple of Leah. 

While classical temples have their storage rooms behind the altar, the chambers¬†for Leah’s collection were built on the opposite wings of the edifice.

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A fountain at the facade of the podium. 

There is a fountain in front of the shrine’s podium which is inspired by her trip to Europe. Truly a work of art. Look at those meticulous carvings.

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Panoramic view of the city. 

The temple also gives a panoramic vista of Cebu City. Although, it’s hot to stay here in the mid-afternoon. We wonder if the sunrise or the sunset looks great from here.

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The girls’ groufie.¬†

The place is sooo perfect for photo ops to flood your Facebook and Instagram. Every corner is “instagrammable”, they said. (Is there such word, by the way?)

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Demi and the lion statue. 

From the high rising pillars to the precised carvings, the temple is just WONDERFUL, it’s brilliant. Mr Adarna must have really made his wife happy even when she’s already gone.

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The pillars of the temple with Demi photobombing. 

Indeed, love does wonder. The Temple of Leah speaks of a man’s real love and devotion to his wife. And this our friends, we hope inspires you to not give up on love because it really exists. Yay!

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Ace and Demi in the Temple of Leah. 

We hope you enjoyed our photo-diary of the Temple of Leah. Over to you, what would you do for love? Leave us some words.

‘Til our next cheesy adventure.

Keep safe!

Love, Ace and Demi

 

Green Lagoon Park | A Family-Friendly Beach Resort

 

Days are getting hotter, air is getting warmer, everybody’s ready¬†for summer!!!¬†

Everybody is already hyped up for summer. Have you booked your summer getaway, yet?

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Green Lagoon Park, Compostela, Cebu

For people living solo, for those who prefer traveling or spending their summer 2017 alone, it’s not hard to find a perfect place to go. However, for those who wanted to spend it with their family, finding a “family-friendly” resort is not that easy, especially if you have many kids with you. Two important things you need to consider are the rates and the distance of the place. And a place that spells “inexpensive fun”.

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Worry no more!!!

Here’s Green¬†Lagoon Park, conveniently located in Canamucan, Compostela, Cebu. (The resort has always been the venue for Ipanema’s Summer SunScream for four consecutive years now.) This resort is big and spacious which makes it ideal for family gatherings and reunions. You can let the¬†kids enjoy swimming in the pool while adults enjoy other ammenities that the resort offers.

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Another good thing for this resort, is that they have no corkage fee for food and they have grilling stations that guests can use. In case you don’t bring food with you, they have a restaurant and some concessionaires inside the facility.

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Green Lagoon Park’s huge swimming pool only has a depth of four feet. Not for adults who wanted to do their diving thingy but it’s perfect for the kids. The pool also has two slides which I’m sure every kid and kid-at-heart wants.

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My sister-in-law and me, kids at heart, yeah!! 

If you don’t feel like swimming in pool, you can go enjoy the beach, instead. It’s not as beautiful as the beaches in the northern and southern part of the province. The sand is not powdery white, it’s a bit rocky.

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Green Lagoon Park’s beach front.

Your kids would still enjoy playing on¬†the sand, though. Just please look after them. There are life guards in the area¬†but there’s no harm if we take caution, too.

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The beach front. 

They also have several rooms for those who wish to stay overnight. These rooms are all air-conditioned and are fully equipped with cable tv, mini fridge, and a cabinet. Each room has a king-sized bed with a private bathroom complete with toiletries. (Rate listed below.)

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Green Lagoon Park’s room accommodation.

The resort also has big nipa hut cottages. You can bring your portable music speakers with you because each cottage has its own electrical outlet. (Rate listed below.)

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Nipa hut cottages. 

Green Lagoon Park is also a perfect venue for team building. They have a wide area for team-building activities. Other activities in the resort includes volleyball, zipline, jet-ski, banana boat and many more.

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The resort’s playground.¬†

How to get there:

  • Green Lagoon Park is only 27 kilometers away from the city. You can take a jeepney bound for Compostela or Danao in SM City, Cebu or even in Mandaue. (Fare 18-25 pesos.) Ask the driver to drop you off in Green Lagoon Resort. This is just along the main road.

Rates:

  • Entrance Fees — Php10 (child) / Php20 (adult)
  • Cottages — Php500
  • Rooms — Php1000
  • No corkage for food except for beverages.

For more information, questions or bookings, you can contact the resort through:

  • Address: Canamucan, Compostela, Cebu¬† Province, Philippines
    Telephone : (+63) (32) 425-6008; 425-8761/ 406-6753
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Ace and Demi in Green Lagoon Park. 

We hope you found this post helpful. If you find any error or changes with the rates, leave us some words in the comment box below. We’d love to hear from you.

‘Til our next post!

Keep safe and enjoy your summer!

Love, Ace and Demi