Need some help planning a trip to the Philippines...

Discussion in 'Asia Pacific' started by rashad, Jul 14, 2017.

  1. rashad

    rashad Anonymous

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2010
    Oddometer:
    25
    Location:
    Williamsport, PA
    Hey guys, I am super stoked about a last minute crazy idea that I had...

    I am going to take an enduro/ adventure ride in the Philippines... solo! I just need as much advice as possible. I have very little real experience in any real culture outside of the US.. and I guess I should clarify that: I have been to Jamaica twice, Mexico four times, Punta Cana once etc... but always on resorts. So I am 35 now... We have 4 children and a dog, and my awesome wife is humoring my early mid life crisis and allowing me to go do this crazy trip. I have always had a passion and a desire to ride some awesome trails in a different country. To see things you will not see in Pennsylvania. To go where no boring Retail Store Manager would typically go (lol). Call it a Vision Quest and play "Lunatic Fringe" in the background... Call it a crazy idea that I should forget about... Call it an insane waste of money on a flight that cost more than the whole trip probably will... But I am going to do it!

    I would love to document the trip with pics and vids and maybe give back to the same folks of whom I have lurked and watched for so long. Ever since I first saw that amazing slideshow I was hooked. This site is the reason I sold my Hayabusa and bought and farkled a dr650. I "matured" from wheelies at 60mph to finding hidden trails, chasing ground hogs and being a hoon. Going places a motorcycle shouldn't. Well in honoring that tradition of going where I shouldn't I am going to the Philippines. I actually had a pen pal from there in junior high school so who knows maybe that is some sort of subconscious comfort.

    So on to the questions: I need to figure out exactly WHERE to go. I was looking at some Bike rental places, and emailed one with no response. I need to figure out where to fly in. Manila seems more citylike and I could not find a ton of dirtbike rental places there. Cebu seems like it is very popular for this and I have seen from past posts a few members live there, which is AWESOME! Boracay Beach seems like a great place after a few days of riding, and I would love to end up there... I have no clue what the best course of action is. The flights are way cheaper from PHL (philadelphia) to Manila, than to Cebu. But it seems Cebu is the best place to compromise between riding and a nice, safe experience. I will probably only have about 6-7 days(beginning of August) to spend so I have to make it count. Any advice here is much appreciated.

    Because I am going solo I thought it would be a good idea to do the guided tour option. So I am not sure if that helps anyone's advice at all. Also If anyone is available during that time and wanted to join the ride or hang out that would be excellent!

    I have some other questions I cannot think of at the moment because I am about to fall asleep... But any advice is very much appreciated.
    #1
  2. rashad

    rashad Anonymous

    Joined:
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    bump
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  3. PopoADV

    PopoADV Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2015
    Oddometer:
    24
    Location:
    Philippines
    Hi,

    Sorry I don't live there anymore, otherwise we could have ridden together!

    Start from Manila: 99% all the intercontinental flights land there and it's not only the capital, but a totally other level of offer in Ph. There will be plenty of places to find a bike, lot more than in Cebu, Davao or all the other cities, which are all quite smaller than Manila.

    Your time is quite short, so you have to plan to discover and understand just a part of Ph, which is made by several different realities.

    If you start from Cebu, you will soon have to start taking boats to other islands and waste time.

    From Manila, you can do a loop in Luzon, which has a lot to offer culturally ad environmentally and, if you still have time, take the Pan Philippine Highway, which is basically the only real highway in the country, and cross to Leyte. When I first saw the difference between Luzon and Leyte I was quite astounded.

    One thing you should reconsider is your dates: August tends to be quite rainy and Ph is not as predictable in its monsoons as some other parts of SE Asia.

    Boracay is a pretty touristic place; many like to go there bounty hunting (if you know what I mean... ), but the beaches are beautiful. However, for me the greatest natural beauty of Ph is underwater. You should consider doing some diving and/or snorkeling. You will be in one of the first areas in the whole world when it comes to marine biodiversity.

    When I have more things coming to mind I'll write them here, but don't hesitate to contact, I just hope I can help you enjoy your trip in this (for me) still underestimated country.
    #3
  4. Ironchef

    Ironchef Warren

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2013
    Oddometer:
    61
    Location:
    Kitchen Stadium, Japan.
    I have ridden Philippines a few times. The only big bikes are rented in Angeles city but August is peak monsoon, lots of flooding, Luzon will be awash with water and mountain roads will have landslides. That is best place to ride and where the only guided tour company in the land operates but impossible that time of year.

    Cebu will be much better weather August. Not perfect but you will get some fine days for sure and could do two loop rides over the central range to north and south which are nice riding and scenic. There is very little in rental options in Cebu. MB's Garden Inn, Lapu Lapu has a couple of Yamaha YBR125 cc bikes, 600 peso a day, I don't think they take bookings and Mactan island is challenging place to ride out of and no helmets available to rent from them. I also rented a bike when I stayed at an expat hotel Kiwi Lodge near Cebu city, simply asked the staff to find someone that would rent me their Honda XRM, a popular four speed 125cc bike in region. I offered 500-600 peso day from memory with helmet supplied and both were source for me by next day.

    Bohol has some nice sights and weather will be like Cebu, a chance of little rain. On Panglao island (Alona Beach) there is rentals of Honda XR200's and XRM's. Nice spots to stay on the beach, not yet a tourist trap like Boracay. Fast ferry available but whole trip there needs a day from Cebu. Make sure you get to the ticket office well in advance as simple tasks take extraordinary long in Philippines so queue can take ages.
    #4
  5. rashad

    rashad Anonymous

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Williamsport, PA
    Hey guys! I appreciate the replies.. I ended up doing a few things. I booked a tour, after some research with what seems like a friendly and reputable tour company. http://motorbikephilippines.com/motorcycle-tours/ I will be riding a WR250F (had a choice of the 450 but I think that would be a bit much). I will be mostly on dirt during this trip, so roads and rain dont really matter much. I will be doing a 3 day guided tour with them and basically packing everything I need in an Ogio Flight Vest (hopefully it fits!). They are located in Liloan, outside of Cebu.

    I am definitely looking forward to what the trip will bring! I am going to be in Cebu from August 3-5, then going the 6th to Liloan for the tour. I will go for three days, unless I really want to keep going then I will go another one or two. I will not be leaving until the 11th so have a couple more days to relax somewhere lol. Maybe rent a street bike if weather holds.
    #5
  6. Learres

    Learres Adventurer

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    24610 Gönnebek, Germany
    Did you also go to Northern Luzon? I heard that there are some exciting places for motorcycle tours up there.
    #6