Travel Recap For 2017

Physically she was in the Philippines, mentally she was still in America. I used to listen to a friend recounts the life she left behind in the States. I would lend my ear everyday, even when she tends to repeat her stories. Before her, I never had such a burning desire to travel. In a way, she opened a gate to a world that both fascinated and tormented me. In my head, I told myself, “I want to travel,” to which my pessimistic self would reply, “you wish, traveling is expensive, you’re broke.” I am writing about this because even when I believed that pessimistic voice for a very long time, I was able to break free from its truth. I didn’t have an epiphany, it didn’t take a broken heart to make it happen. Just one day, I started traveling and continued doing it to this day.

2017 is the year I’ve had more trips than ever before. It wasn’t a goal, I didn’t have a number in mind, I just went whenever I could. And to start the New Year right on my blog, join me as I journeyed back in time to relive the memories of my travels in 2017.


I started out 2017 with a trip to Taiwan and in all of my solo travel abroad, I consider this trip as my most favorite. The people are the most helpful bunch that I’ve encountered. The street food is so good I did not hold myself back. And the weather is so cold I couldn’t flex my fingers. Taiwan sets the tone for the rest of my year.

Mt. Batolusong, Batangas

Every time I climb a mountain, I tell myself, never again. But in February, I gathered my friends and together we conquered Mt. Batolusong in Batangas. The climb went well, but we didn’t see what we came for; the sea of clouds.

Puerto Galera, Mindoro

On the same month, I went scuba diving in the open sea for the first time. A feat that I never thought I’d ever accomplish given my irrational fear of deep water and sharks. This happened in Puerto Galera as part of a good cause. More than the fun side of it, the trip taught me that sometimes we can surprise ourselves. That the limitations we have set for ourselves can be broken if we would look fear in the eye and say, “Fudge it, I’m doing it.


In yet another year of Banahaw Tugtugan, my friends and I were present. We went to Bangkong Kahoy in Dolores, Quezon and spent the night listening to music; well at least my friends did, as I stayed inside the tent to sleep.


Beautiful but not as equally famous as some tourist destinations in the Philippines, Quirino is my most important find in 2017.  The long hours spent on travel, even our encounters with the not-so-friendly locals, I considered small sacrifices to see the natural and unspoiled beauty that lies in this part of the Cagayan Valley.

Subic, Olongapo

In May I realized I can be flirty if I want to; well if I got drunk enough that is, lol. After not dating for years, there I was, kissing a guy I met in Subic the entire night. Want the full story? Check out my article at Worldinmywords.

El Nido, Palawan

July, I returned to one of the most beautiful places in the Philippines, El Nido, and fell in love all over again. This time I traveled with some good friends.


A promo fare allowed me to book a flight on the cheap to Malaysia. I set my sights on Penang to see the street art in George Town.


One of my goals last year is to celebrate my birthday in another country and I made it happen when I went to Singapore. I was fortunate to have a good friend who was willing to host me. I haven’t done telling you my Singapore as I had been quite busy in the latter part of 2017. Stay tuned for my Singapore post in the coming days.


September, I went back to my favorite island, Boracay, and just a week after, I returned with some bloggers and stayed in a luxurious resort.

Mt. Manabu, Batangas

In November, a mountain hike I originally organized with some friends, turned into a family affair. There in the muddy trail, we climbed Mt. Manabu, a mountain that you can climb with a promise of coffee.

Sydney Australia

Out of all my trips this year, this one, I didn’t see coming. I left my previous company and started working for Datacom, an Australian-based IT company. Not only do I get a better pay now, I was also sent by the company to our headquarters in Sydney, Australia in November. My Sydney series will also be published in the coming days.

Siargao, Surigao del Norte

You’ve probably seen the movie (I didn’t), but Siargao, the surfer’s paradise in Surigao del Norte is all that it promises to be. A quiet town with that chillax island vibe, beautiful and unspoiled, relatively speaking, to the more popular island destinations in the Philippines.

Mt. Ulap, Benguet

In December I met my favorite mountain. Mt. Ulap. The view is breathtaking, the trail is fairly easy to hike, and I had the perfect company. Watch out for my Mt Ulap story on the blog soon.


It’s been one hell of a year for me. There were some sad times but they were only fleeting. And this is the year when I can honestly say, I have completely recovered from my depression.

I’m happy, healthy, single, and excited for the amazing things that 2018 has in store for me. 2018 is going to be epic. Claim it! Bonne année!


On My Third Attempt, I Finally Got To Visit Davao
Experiencing The Onslaught of Typhoon Odette In Siargao
ili-likha baguio
Check Out This Fascinating Art Complex In Baguio | Ili-likha Artists’ Village

Comments (21)

  1. Thelittlelai: Beyond limitss
    Thelittlelai: Beyond limitss

    Wow, should I say “Ikaw na”? kidding aside. Anyway, you really had an amazing year last year. You were able to visit 3 countries and even explored the beautiful places in the Philippines. Your travel experience inspired me, and hopefully I can visit those countries that you have been to. Thank you so much for sharing your fun-filled travel memories in 2017. It’s always great to look back on all our travel journey.

  2. Ambuj Saxena
    Ambuj Saxena

    Well it’s been almost a year since I have been avidly following you on your journey through the world. For me, you are a great source of inspiration. Your travel tales have made me realise the importance of solo trips and I think the blog on street art photography in malaysia was the pick of the pack! Keep traveling and keep inspiring!

  3. sumit walia
    sumit walia

    such a lovely article , i look forward to reading your posts . Have a great year in the months coming ahead

  4. Jane

    That’s one amazing year! But I am most proud that you were able to overcome your depression. 🙂 Bonne Année Marge!

  5. amit

    you’ve had such a contrasting 2017 to me, for me 2017 was the year I didn’t travel (I took a year out from traveling) except for the end when I went to Morocco haha. However there are quite a few places that you’ve been to that I want to go to in future – I can very much relate to how you started to travel I was the same back in 2010 when I packed my bags and headed for Australia, before hand I used to tell myself the same things like being too broke to travel but once I started I didn’t stop, I ended up traveling for 6 years without going home (not bad for being a broke guy haha) – I hope you get to continue your travels 😀

  6. Leah

    You really have had a busy year! I hope my 2018 looks this packed at the end!

  7. Katchutravels

    Looks like you had a great year filled with great AHA moments at the places you went. I personally liked your street art photo in penang and the image on top of mount Ulap. All the best for your travels in 2018

  8. Louiela Ann Analista
    Louiela Ann Analista

    Great 2017, Marge! By the way, is it in Taiwan or Malaysia… you met the Catalonian guy? 🙂

    I’m following you in IG, and yeah, you’d been in different peaks! More hikes for 2018…the mountains are calling…

      • Louiela Ann Analista
        Louiela Ann Analista

        Oh, I thought it was in Taiwan… 🙂
        Have you already planned which mountain you’re going to hike soon? Or you went to Masungi already?
        Seems I am stalking you ah :))))

  9. Sandy N Vyjay
    Sandy N Vyjay

    IT has been a pleasure following your travels in 2017. You have been to some wonderful places and had some incredible experiences. Sydney, Malaysia, Taiwan, and much more. But the best places for me personally are the hidden gems of the Philippines. Hope to see you travel to more and more uncharted frontiers in 2018 too.

  10. neha

    Waao!! Seems 2017 was full of a lot of travel for you, and that also to different places . All of them beautiful. And I do wish 2018 will hold even more for you in terms of travel. Happy new year!

  11. Neil Nicerio
    Neil Nicerio

    That was one adventure filled year! Galing naman. Medyo naingit ako dun ah. :p

    I wish you all the best this 2018. For sure mas marami ka pang mabibisitang bagong lugar.

    More power to Coffeehan. 🙂

  12. Sam

    I was especially curious about the Subic MO session, sorry! Hahaha. I’m a late bloomer myself before I found my current boyfriend. Something feels good about letting go, indeed. When you don’t have to overthink and think about the long-term consequences of your actions. 34 or 24 I think we all need some YOLO once in a while : )

  13. Fábio Rodrigo dos Santos Inácio
    Fábio Rodrigo dos Santos Inácio

    Hi Marge, I am really happy that you already recovered from your depression and wish you the best in 2018 🙂
    You have been in many amazing places in 2017, some of them I also already have been there. Would Love to go to Mt. Ulap. I am the opposite than you, all th time I climb a mountain I want to klimb other one bigger!

  14. Gelyka Ruth Dumaraos
    Gelyka Ruth Dumaraos

    Hi Marge! You and your adventures are always in my feed so somehow I remember all these things you share via Facebook. What interests me the most, from all your travels in 2017 was Quirino, a place I haven’t been yet. Cheers to more adventures this year!

  15. Dex Bautista
    Dex Bautista

    That’s a lot of travels for a year. Taiwan is also our favorite. My wife used to say before that there’s nothing to see there. But when we went there, she wants us to visit Taiwan on a winter.

  16. Rye Santiago
    Rye Santiago

    What a stunning way to cap off the year, Marge. That’s a lot of places and spaces to ponder upon your place in the world. Somehow, stepping away helped you recover from depression. Did you climb Mt. Ulap with the World Citizen Travel Community?

  17. Johna

    So many travels this year for you! Out of all of the places you went I think El Nido is my fave although I haven’t been to Siargao yet and everyone is raving about it atm hehe.

  18. Harini

    Woah !That is a hell lotta travel in one year.So many foreign trips and I have to admit that I am extremely envious of you.Yes travel is expensive if we don’t manage our expenses wisely


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