Following an overnight stay in the port town of Iloilo, I was ready to get to my 2nd planned destination. I set out on an hour-long ferry ride over to the city of Bacolod, before riding a bus another 6 hour towards Dumaguete.
Upon arrival in Dumaguete, I took a trike towards the Flying Fish hostel. I immediately fell in love with the place. The staff & guests were so nice & welcoming, they were all happy to give me advice on how to navigate the city. After getting settled in, I grabbed the next ride downtown for some dinner & a pit stop at the ATM.
When I got back to the hostel, the locals had asked where I went for dinner. I couldn’t help but gush about the feast I had for just 445 pesos ($8.50 USD), for South-East Asia standards this may not sound cheap, but trust me, it was well worth it. At this point, I also found out that I had been ripped off by the trike drivers. Where locals would pay 9-10 pesos, I had paid 15 pesos ($0.30 USD). In a sense, it sucked getting ripped off. But when you compare it to the USD equivalent, I was completely okay paying a bit more to support the locals.
I woke up the next day with plans to rent motorbikes & visit the local hot spring. But first, I set out to my accommodation for the next 5 nights, I’d be staying at Liquid Dive Resort about an hour outside of town. Here, I would be receiving my Open Water Diver certification, so I could continue scuba diving all around the world.
My accommodation was a simple shack on the beach, I paid extra to include AC & hot water. I settled into my new home for the next 5 days with another feast at the in-house restaurant. I quickly found out, that I was about to be almost completely disconnected from the outside world. The facility did have WiFi, but it only worked about 5% of the time. Because of this, I was unable to reach my friends from the Flying Fish Hostel, instead I got right into progressing through the diving course.
While I’d been missing everyone back in the USA already, the isolation took it to an entirely new level. It’s nice to disconnect every now & then, but I had never done it this extent. This trip was either going for force me to find myself, or I was going to drive myself insane. With my first day of diving in the books, I called it an early night, eager to progress towards ocean dives the following day.
To be continued…
Make sure to check out the video on YouTube: Exploring the Philippines – Backpacking Asia