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Best local destinations for every barkada


By Sherwin Arnaiz, The Manila Times

If there is one rule to traveling, it is that nothing else makes adventures more exciting than having great people to share them with.

No doubt traveling with family or friends is always a memorable experience, but even better to explore great unknowns, conquer amazing places and create golden memories with loved ones.

For those who are planning to use up their vacation leaves, now is the time to chat with friends and organize those much-awaited getaways.

Today, The Manila Times and Travel Factor have come up with a list of interesting up-and-coming tourist destinations to consider.


Mount Daraitan for hikers

Some local hiking destinations are just three or four hours outside of Metro Manila, so friends can easily hop on a bus or organize a road trip. For starters, the trails of Mount Daraitan in Tanay, Rizal is an easy climb and usually takes three hours to reach the summit.

Though the climb is pretty steep in the beginning, the majestic view at the top makes all the sweat worth it.

Another awesome option is Batad, Ifugao and trek along the breathtaking Batad Rice Terraces. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is believed to be sculpted by the Ifugao and a trip there will make thrill-seekers appreciate this stunning engineering work of ingenuity.


Samal Island to enjoy the beach

The Island Garden City of Samal in Davao is blessed with white sand resorts where one can lounge and relax under the sun. The island is also home to rich marine life and exotic flora and fauna which travelers can explore with the help of the friendly locals.

Resting starfish in Lakawon beach.

Meanwhile, Negros Occidental’s best kept secret paradise, Lakawon Island, is also a must-visit for those looking for a peaceful beach retreat. This 16-hectare island is home to the biggest floating bar in Asia, TawHai, where it is best to enjoy drinks while enjoying a stunning view of the open water.

Masungi Georeserve in Baras, Rizal.

Masungi Georeserve for adventure seekers

For squads who have a knack for thrilling activities, a day-trip to Masungi Georeserve is a must in the barkada bucket list. This eco tourist spot in Baras, Rizal brings visitors closer to nature with its trails that showcase natural rock formations and lush rainforests in the area. They can also take an Instagram-worthy shot atop its famous “Sapot” which is similar to a spider web and offers a clear 360-view of the province.

An option is to drive north to Ilocos Norte and visit La Paz Sand Dunes, where the whole barkada can go sand boarding or enjoy an ATV ride.

The whole barkada can have a chance to win an all-expense-paid trip to select local destinations in Travel Factor’s latest promo.

A few miles off Ilocos, the pro­vince of Abra is also a favorite spot for its hot springs and waterfalls hidden in the mountains.

In another partnership with ready-to-drink Green Tea beverage, C2 Cool and Clean, Travel Factor is offering local adventure tours to let Filipinos explore the beauty of local destinations. After organizing out-of-town trips to Batad, Ifugao in July, the journey to Lakawon, Negros becomes as exciting in September.

To get a chance to join these all-expense-paid trips, interested participants simply have to share a photo of their own travel kit or essentials with C2 on C2 Cool and Clean’s official Facebook page (@C2CoolandClean). They can also post a photo on their Instagram and tag C2’s official account (@c2coolandclean).

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