Malamawi Island - a hidden paradise in Isabela, Basilan

Malamawi Island
Malamawi Island is one of the hidden paradise and the top tourist attractions and destinations in Isabela, Basilan. Malamawi White Beach is a privately owned resort in the island with a long stretch of fine white sand shoreline. To see its beauty, from Zamboanga City port, I rode on a ferry to Isabela City. Then, a motorised banca ride to the port of Malamawi and a 20 to 30 minutes motorcycle ride to the white beach.

Pasalamat Festival in Pagadian City, Zamboanga del Sur

pagadian city tourist spots
After Ozamis City, Misamis Occidental, I traveled to Pagadian City, Zamboanga del Sur - the last province in my list. It was a three and a half hours land travel with the a huge picture of how the people of Zamboanga peninsula lives. At the integrated terminal, I rode on a motorcycle to the center of the city passing by the famous rotunda. I was wearing a sando, thus, I easily felt the fresh and cool wind while we were on a descending road with the clear view of the stunning sunset.

A Short Stay at Ozamis City, Misamis Occidental

tourist spots in ozamis city
After my historical tour in Dipolog and Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte, I traveled to Ozamis City in Misamis Occidental (Region 10). Its capital is Oroqueta City but I chose Ozamis because I want to see and touch Fort sa Cotta and the Ozamis Cathedral. On the way, I noticed the wide farmlands but when I arrived in the center, this city is the same with the other cities, business establishments are in every corner, transportation is continuous and the streets are undeniably busy. From the Ozamis Integrated Terminal, I rode in a tricycle to the different tourist spots, attractions and destinations.

Zamboanga del Norte: tourist spots, what to do and where to stay

zamboanga del norte tourist spots
It was a long travel from Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay to Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte. My primary destination in this province is Jose Rizal Shrine in Dapitan City - the place where  Dr. Jose P. Rizal, the Philippine National Hero, spent his few years when he was exiled but still made this life fruitful by working as a doctor, sculptor, farmer, teacher and participating other activities. Not only that, heritage houses are just some of tourist spots and destinations in Dapitan City.

Zamboanga Sibugay: tourist spots, what to do and where to stay

Zamboanga Sibugay tourist spots
My first destination in Region 9 was Zamboanga Sibugay, a 3.5 hours land travel from Zamboanga City. Ipil, it's capital, is the usual stop over of the buses heading to Dipolog, Pagadian and even Cagayan de Oro City. Since it's a center, like other municipalities, there are big business establishments and the streets are busy. Ipil, as a busy area, hides something unique and a very Instagram worthy tourist spots and attractions.

Isabela, Basilan: tourist spots, what to do and where to stay

Isabela City Basilan
Traveling to Isabela City, Basilan is less than two hours from the port of Zamboanga City. Is it safe in Basilan? It's a YES! There are news about ASG and terrorist acts happened in the province, but it doesn't mean that it's not safe. There are two cities in Basilan, Lamitan (the capital) and Isabela (part of Region 9), that serve as the center. Like the other cities, huge business establishments, transportation and people are present in every corner. From the port of Isabela City, while holding my mobile phone and using Google Map, I walked on the streets to the different tourist spots, attractions and destinations in the city. Did this alone and it's safe.

Jolo, Sulu: Tourist Spots, Destinations, What to do and Where to stay

sulu tourist spots
While the sun was still setting and we were a few kilometers away from the port of Jolo, I noticed the big picture of and the stunning view of Sulu - an island province in the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. Honestly, this province is always associated with "war." With my statement "I will be traveling to Tawi-Tawi, Sulu and Basilan," I always receive a response like "it's not safe, don't go there." Sad to hear right? But that's the reality. My solo-backpacking in the province is the proof that traveling to Jolo, Sulu is safe and I discovered that the people here are friendly and accommodating. Below are the must do and must visit tourist spots and destinations in Jolo, Sulu.


Tawi-Tawi: Tourist Spots, Destinations and Where to stay

Bongao Tawi-Tawi tourist spots
For me, Tawi-Tawi is the hardest province to penetrate because of its geographical location. Not only that, Tawi-Tawi is always associated with "war" and most of the time, being judged and considered as "unsafe" for travelers, WHICH I DISAGREE! Bongao is the busiest municipality in Tawi-Tawi but has a lot of stunning tourist spots and destinations that are just waiting to be recognized.


Zamboanga City: Travel Guide and Itinerary

Zamboanga City travel guide
"The Latin City of Asia" - the title given to Zamboanga City because of their language called "chavacano," which is very similar to Spanish. This city is situated on the Southern side of the Zamboanga Peninsula and on the Northern side of Basilan. Aside from their language, Zamboanga City is also prominent with their "vinta," a colorful and stunning sailboat or watercraft that is usually used by the locals. During my Solo-Backpacking in this city, without proper itinerary and only used Google Map, I did a walking tour to their top tourist spots and destinations.

Travel Guide: ZamBaSulTa, Region 9 and Misamis Occidental

zambasulta travel guide and itinerary
ZamBaSulta is an acronym given to Zamboanga City, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi - the normal route, however, I made a twist and created ZamTaSuBa. Let me make it more extreme, my solo-backpacking includes Region 9: Zamboanga Sibugay, Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur and Misamis Occidental part of Region 10. Details below is my actual itinerary for 9 days that cover 7 Provinces and the independent City of Zamboanga.