Mt. Ulap

Last December, I conquered Mt. Ulap my second hiking experienced together with my colleagues after Mt. Batolusong in Rizal. Our vehicle departs from our pick-up point in Buendia, Makati at 10:30pm and arrived at the jump-off point at Barangay Ampucao Itogon, Benguet around 5:30am. We took some coffee and do some stretching after the long drive. There are few stores in the area selling some hiking paraphernalia like bonnets, bags and we bought the wooden trekking pole or “tungkod”.

sale only 25.00 pesos

The registration area manned by the local barangay officials of Brgy. Ampucao which served as the entry point. All hikers shall register their name first before hiking. A local guide was assigned to every group of hikers. The local guide assigned to our group gave us a short orientation regarding the peak and the do’s and don’t while trekking. And ending the orientation with a short prayer for everyone’s safety. We were divided into two groups, we have Ate Sophia as our guide and Kuya Darryl as the sweeper, the last person in charge in the trail.

We learned that Mt. Ulap’s eco-trail consist of the following:
(Ambanaw Paoay) 1st Peak 1.788MASL/3.6KM
(Gungal) 2nd Peak 1.814MASL/5.4KM
(Mt. Ulap) The Summit 1.846MASL/6.4KM
Entry Point Brgy. Ampucao, Itogon
Exit Point Brgy St. Fe Itogon

during the orientation

Depending on your pace Mt. Ulap can be finished or completed for about 4-6 hours according to our guide and it is a 9KM walk.  We started walking through the ascending road that serves as our warm up. After a few minutes of walking from the jump-off, we saw breathtaking views from the entry point called Tomtombek. Before we started the trail they have this area where everyone must take the obligatory picture taking because of the breathtaking views. They have some traditional Igorot costume that can be used during the picture taking. After taking your pictures don’t forget your donations.

The first part is an ascended trail and steep but because of the cold breezy air of the mountain, you will not feel tired. We reached the first view deck. We had our breakfast in that area, take some pictures before continuing the walk. There are some wooden gates that you will cross, according to our guide, it is made because of the cows roaming around the mountain. You will be amazed by the beautiful slopes of vast grassland without you knowing you are entering a campsite leading to the first peak “Ambanaw Paoay” you will see the breathtaking views of the Cordillera mountains. We had again our obligatory photo ops and took rest before another long walk under the heat of the sun.

Most part of the path is rocky be sure to take some care while trekking.

When we arrived at the Gungal Rock area, we have to wait for our turn because of the long queue of hikers waiting for their turn at the famous Gungal Rock. I guessed most of the hikers who have been in this area will agree Gungal Rock was the most photographed spot in Mt. Ulap. Gungal Rock was slanted so you have to be careful. We enjoyed the spot even under the heat of the sun. Our guide served as our photographer gave us our moments in this famous rock.

We continued walking to reach the summit. The feeling is awesome when we reached Mt. Ulap.

Another picture taking, group picture, solo, picture with other hikers.

we reached the summit at this time.

We started to descend from the summit, I thought it will be the easiest part but no because there are paths that will use your strength as it becomes steeper.

There is a store about 30 minutes or less walked after the summit. We ordered Pancit Canton and a Coke Litro finally, we had our lunch. 

After regaining our strengths, we move on to the last kilometers of walking. You have to be very careful on your steps it may slip you.  img_20181209_1535253712107619555598471.jpgI never thought that I was far behind my colleagues but instead of waiting for them I continued. I passed small bridged and villages I just continued though I’m a little bit afraid if I am in the right trail until I heard a group of people laughing and shouting made me relieve.

When I got into the final bridge and heard vehicle noise it really made me happy because I am near the exit point at around 1615H and first to reached Brgy. Sta.Fe among my colleagues. 

the exit point

I can say Mt Ulap has brought me into another level of hiking experienced to get into a much higher mountain climbing activities.

What would be the next?


Charming Tagaytay Vacation Home

Unlike other tourist spots near the Metro Manila, Tagaytay considers next to Baguio because of its cool and breezy climate. Tagaytay is very accessible to travelers and tourist for a quick getaway. Along with many restaurants and amazing views and scenery, Taal Lake and Taal Volcano are the major tourist spots in the City. 

Last Saturday, November 17, I attended the Blogger”s Party organized by Karla a Blogger from the south area and provide our accommodation near Ayala Serin Mall, Tagaytay City. I am excited to meet those bloggers and vloggers. I met new friends and have fun with them besides the generation gap.

Our accommodation is a vacation house named, Charming Tagaytay Vacation Home is a villa type and best for tourists, barkada getaway, special occasions or for bonding with the family. I am somewhat amazed by the house because it is beautiful although, no extra facilities are in there to enjoy with. However, this vacation house is highly recommendable.

Charming Tagaytay Vacation Home is a three-storey villa and is situated inside an exclusive subdivision so you will expect a quiet place and neighborhood. The vacation house can accommodate 20 people and has complete facilities and amenities for your vacation needs.
📌Living Room, with access to a free WIFI and CABLE TV
📌Kitchen and Dining Room with Free used of Kitchen Appliances and Tablewares – used it with care as they will charge you if you damage anything inside.
📌 1 Bedroom_Queen Size Bed
📌 T&B with Shower Heater

second floor: on the 2nd Floor it has a 🛌 3 Bedrooms with Queen Size Bed in which 2 has its own T&B with Shower. 🛋 Family Living Room with Terrace.

the Attic:
on the 3rd floor or attic, you will find a large space with 8 single bed and with 4 single bed on the other side also with T&B again with shower heater.

Please note that the rooms are all with good air conditioning units. Since you are in Tagaytay I guess no need to turn on the AC unit. I am one of those who slept in the attic and we did not even use even the electric fan, its breezy because there are windows open.

garden and gazebo
If you want to be relaxed and feel the cold and breezy air they have a gazebo and wooden swing in the garden

The garage can accommodate 2 cars as well as you can do outdoor grilling if you wish.

If  you find Charming Tagaytay Vacation Home is the best for your next Tagaytay Trip or Vacation or Looking for a place to celebrate your Special Occassions consider this beautiful place in Tagaytay as they accept bookings and reservation

Address: Jesus Street cor Dechosa Street, Tagaytay Country Homes 1 Tagaytay-Nasugbu Hi way, 4120 Tagaytay, Philippines

Reservation via the folowing Contact Details:
Mobile Number: +63 917 568 4658
email address:
Facebook Page: Tagaytay Vacation Home

check in Time    02:00 pm
check out Time  12:00 pm

Nearby Places:
Our  Lady of Lourdes Church
Ayala Mall Serin
Sky Ranch
Sky Ridge
and other Tourist Spots in TagayTay

Dormitels ph+Containers by Eco Hotel


Dormitels’ #KuripotKaBa digital campaign demonstrates how resourceful Filipinos are, especially, when it’s about food and traveling.

For many people traveling is somewhat a goal to achieve. We travel to have fun, to relieve ourselves from work stress and to connect with people while having the opportunity to learn different traditions and culture alongside their way of living. Our country is regarded by many as the next tourist destination with amazing beaches and tourist spot, tradition and culture, good food, hospitable and friendly people.

I myself love to travel and would look for the cheapest option to save my money. But sometimes, I get disappointed when choosing the cheapest options.


Dormitel ph changes my mindset of the “cheapest option” as they provide you stylish yet clean and cheap room (your choice between air-conditioner and fan-cooled rooms) equipped with amenities and fresh sheets and towels for every guest’s convenience.


“Dormitels Philippines enables thrifty travelers to enjoy a luxurious yet comfortable feel without breaking the bank,” says Dormitels’ PR Manager, Aym Bagatsing.

Dormitels Philippines has branches in some of the Philippines’ most popular localities, including:

Earnshaw, Sampaloc, Manila  –  Located along Earnshaw Street in Sampaloc, Dormitels is just a few kilometers away from Manila’s top tourist attractions. In fact, Intramuros—the historic walled area within the metro—is only a jeepney ride from Dormitels. The same goes for well-known sites, Rizal Park and Manila Ocean Park, which are both round four kilometers away from our budget hotel. Also, SM City Manila, Robinsons Place Manila, and other popular hangout spots in the city are easy to reach should you choose to book a room.

The Fort, Taguig   –  Situated along Limbo Street, Dormitels is one of the most affordable accommodations in The Fort, Taguig area. Our budget hotel is a stone throw’s away from Kalayaan Avenue, meaning you can easily reach Bonifacio Global Center and Makati CBD, which are home to a range of restaurants, shopping centers, and trendiest hangouts and spots in the metro. Also, Dormitels is only a twenty-minute drive away from the NAIA airport.


  • Boracay Station 1
  • El Nido, Palawan
  • Alona Beach, Bohol
  • Cloud 9, Siargao

Dormitels UST and Siargao Open in the 1st Quarter of 2019

As we welcome the year 2019, Dormitels Philippines will soon open its budget-friendly hotel in UST. “We saw the need of a secure and affordable dorm for students, especially, for those students who are from the provinces taking their reviews in Manila,” says Dormitels UST prices are extremely affordable. “P149/day is I think a decent price not only for students but for everyone who needs a comfortable, clean, and secure place to stay in Manila,” Bagatsing told the media.

Siargao is located in Cloud 9 and will be open in the second quarter of 2019. While it is in the best location, the prices are still affordable.

They are now accepting bookings for next year July to September 2019 for the following locations: *The Fort, BGC * Earnshaw (Near UST) * Boracay (soon to open) * Siargao * Bohol * El Nido (Inside Pops District PH)

Dormitels Philippines Managed other Properties that caters to seafarers and backpackers locally and internationally. Bahay ng Marino and Luneta Dormitory both located in Manila. Room rate differs depending on the location, however, the rooms are as low as P99 per person perfect for students, backpackers, and even entrepreneurs.

With clean and comfortable accommodations without spending too much of your hard-earned money, Dormitel ph is the best choice for any budget-conscious traveler! Providing you budget-friendly accommodations and activities to ensure you make the most of your budget.

About Dormitels Philippines

Dormitels Philippines is managed by Eco Hotel Philippines with the concept of combining dormitory accommodations with hotel services at a budget price.  Dormitels caters to backpackers, transient travelers and practical vacationers seeking no-frills but clean and comfortable accommodations.  Guests can choose between a fan or an aircon room.  Each room is equipped with a tv set and has its own toilet and shower. The double sized beds supplied with fresh linens, clean towels, and basic toiletries.

Eco Hotel Philippines just turned 1 last Saturday, November 17, 2018. As they celebrate this milestone with lifestyle and travel bloggers they introduced  Dormitels Philippines the budget hostel property.



Containers by Eco Hotel is located on SVD road, Nasugbu Highway, Tagaytay City, across Starbucks by the ridge. Containers by Eco Hotel, the first container hotel in the city that applies green principles to its structures and practices and to promote Tagaytay’s eco-tourism. hdr

eco hotel photo
Hosted an Eco Art Festival with a cause
Paintings and murals conspicuously inscribe on the walls. To date, they collected 75 art piece.

Eco Hotel Philippines Introduces Camping & Grilling Activities in Tagaytay

During the event not only Dormitel ph introduced during the media launch but also this new concept of safe and glamorous activity, Camping & Grilling proudly serving Filipino favorites on the roof deck.

Glamping, or glamorous camping, allows visitors to experience nature while being protected from the harsh elements. Think of it as camping-lite: a family or a barkada can rent one tent (good for up to 10 pax) and enjoy the clear night sky, cool breeze from the safety of the Containers roof deck.


tent.jpg with ten tables where guests can prepare and grill the food themselves. They may order from our restaurant or bring their own for a small corkage fee.


So the next time you think of having a trip in Tagaytay or  just want to be away from the hustle and bustle of the Metro or you just want to try something new or have a bonding moment with your family and/or your barkada consider Containers by Eco Hotel is located on SVD road, Nasugbu Highway, Tagaytay City, across Starbucks by the ridge.  Camping & Grilling can be found on the 4th-floor roof deck of our hotel.

Visit their website

For the latest updates on all exciting promos, follow their social media accounts

Facebook (

Instagram (@dormitelsphilippines)

Also, follow  Bahay ng Marino Official Facebook/IG: bahay_ng_marino_official:

another blogging opportunity, y second media launch invite for dormitels ph. 

Aozora – where your taste meets the sky

Tagaytay is our favorite weekend getaway among us Manileño. A perfect place for family vacation, group activities and is also regarded as a place for a romantic honeymoon because of the wonderful and breathtaking views of Taal Lake and Volcano. Tagaytay is the most pleasant city as you enjoy the cool climate, environment, and culture.  Tourist nowadays is not just enjoying the good scenery in Tagaytay but put as much thought to food crawling into many restaurants they want for the ultimate experience.  “Bulalo” is the most famous local dish in Tagaytay.

Aozora – a must visits Japanese Restaurant in Tagaytay. Its cozy ambiance is perfect for those who yearn for quality food and ultimate dining experience. Food at Aozora is simply appetizing, ingredients are prepared and cooked in authentic Japanese style.


The menu is not extensive as other Japanese restaurant but they offer something new. The Aozora Ramen, famously known as “Bulalo Ramen” their signature dishes as they claimed alongside with their selection of Maki, Sashimi, Sushi, Maki, Fried Donburi, Curry and Rice meals.

Aozora Ramen – Bulalo soup and ramen noodles with egg and beef meat

Crispy Kani Maki
Crispy Kani Maki – mango+cucumber+kani

Kani Salad with sesame dressing

Salmon Sashimi – Top 1 Aozora’s Best Seller

Tuna Sashimi

They serve Omu-rice and coffee that will surely satisfy your morning. And for a complete breakfast, you will enjoy miso soup and Sumiyaki coffee.

Japanese Omelette Rice good for 1

They also serve meal common in Japanese cuisine.

Beef Teriyaki Bento

On a final note, dine in Aozora is going to be worth driving to Tagaytay. A perfect place for family dining, barkada trip, celebrate special events or simply traveling alone for good food to taste.


Order their Mixed Sashimi and the Dragon Maki fried shrimp with Teriyaki Sauce. Having a Japanese Chef/Consultant manage the Kitchen will surely give us an authentic Japanese gourmet experience under the Blue Sky.

So on your next trip to Tagaytay visit Aozora Japanese Café + Bistro now has 2 branches. Opens daily from 9:00 am to 10:00 pm located at:

1. 209 SVD Road corner Tagaytay Main Rod, Tolentino West, Tagaytay across Country Suites and in front of Containers by ECO Hotel
Mobile No. 0936-980-9656

2. Purok 15, Calamba-Tagaytay main road, Sungay East Tagaytay City in front of Southridge Village Mobile No. 0977-683-7353

13th Month Pay

Tuwing sasapit ang “ber” months karamihan sa ating mga empleyado ay excited dahil ito ang panhon ng bigayan ng taunang 13th month pay. Pero marami pa rin empleyado ang madalas na nagtatanong kung sila ba ay meron o makakatanggap na ng nasabing benepisyo lalo na kung ito ay mga baguhan pa lang sa pinapasukan kumpanya. Narito ang ilang inpormasyon patungkol sa paksang nabanggit.

13th monthpay

Ano ba ang 13th month?

Kadalasan, katumbas ito sa isang buong buwanang suweldo at binabayaran tuwing Disyembre (ika-12 buwan) ngunit hindi lalagpas sa araw ng Diyembre 24 sa bawat taon. Ito ay mandatos na base sa ilalim ng Presidential Decree No. 851. Sino ang pwedeng tumaggap at kailan dapat makakatanggap ng 13th month pay?

Ang lahat ng mga rank and file na empleyado regardless kung ano ang katayuan sa trabaho at nagtrabaho ng hindi bababa sa isang buwan sa (calendar year) ay may karapatan na makatanggap ng ika-13 buwan na bayad.

Paano ang pag compute ng 13th month pay?

Ito ay nakabase or nakalkula base sa 1/12 na total basic salary or compensation ng empleyado sa loob ng isang taon o pangunahing buwanang suweldo para sa buong taon na hinati ng 12 buwan. Hindi kasama sa basic salary ang COLA o mga regular na allowances.

Batayan sap ag compute ng 13th month pay

Total Basic Monthly Salary Earned during the Year = 13th Month Pay
12 months

Gamitin natin ang basic salary natin na P502.00 /per day sa loob na anim na araw o ang kabuuan na P13, 502.00 sa loob ng isang buwan.

January no absent 13, 502.00
February no absent 13, 502.00
March no absent 13, 502.00
April no absent 13, 502.00
May no absent 13, 502.00
June no absent 13, 502.00
July 5 day leave with pay 13, 502.00
August 5 days absent 10, 542.00
September no absent 13, 502.00
October no absent 13, 502.00
November no absent 13, 502.00
December no absent 13, 502.00

159,064.00 /12 = 13, 255.33

Kung sakali ang empleyado ay pumasok ng September meron na ba s’yang matatanggap na 13th month pay? Meron at computed ito nang pro-rata, ibig sabihin iko compute ito base sa kung ilang buwan ka na naninilbihan sa kumpanya.

September no absent 13, 502.00

October no absent 13, 502.00

November no absent 13, 502.00

December no absent 13, 502.00

54,008.00 / 12 = 4,500.66

Kapag ba nagresign o na terminate makakatanggap pa din ba ng 13th month pay?

Ang mga resigned o terminated na empleyado ay maaari pa ring makuha ang kanilang 13th month pay. Ang computation ay pro-rata, ibig sabihin ibabase sa kung ilang buwan ka na naninilbihan sa kumpanya.

Laging nating tandaan ang 13th month pay ay hindi CHRISTMAS BONUS!

Upang ma-maximize ang iyong inaasahang tanggapin, maiwasan ang pagdating sa huli o hindi papasok sa trabaho. Kung kailangan mong mag leave sa trabaho, samantalahin ang mga leave credits ng iyong kumpanya.

SSS-Gabay sa Pagiging Miyembro

I got these publications during my recent visit to SSS office. I am sharing this for both employed and voluntary members. This is printed in “tagalog ” so that everyone can easily comprehend the guidelines of being an SSS member.

sss employee
Published by the SSS Corporate Communication Department February 2018

sss employee2
Published by the SSS Corporate Communication Department February 2018

Voluntary members, particularly those overseas workers this is a Must for you.


voluntary 2

Published by the SSS Corporate Communication Department February 2018

This will help us as we reach our retiring age. With a paid contributions of at least 120 months, you are entitled to receive a monthly pension. Your pension will be dependent on the amount you have contributed.

One good thing with SSS is that those who have not reached the 120-month contribution will still eligible to receive a lump-sum benefit based on how much you and your employer contributed.

Every employee member is entitled to benefits under SSS and EC-Employees Compensation. However, voluntary and self-employed members are exempted under the EC program.

Member can basically benefits provide under SSS programs:

As member, you should always check if your employer reported you and religiously remitted your contributions.

2019 Public Holidays

By the President’s proclamation last August 15, 2018, regular and special (nonworking holidays for the year 2019 was declared under the Proclamation No555.

Note that for the Holidays such as Eidul Fitr and Eid-ul Adha dates will be confirmed first by the office of the President to NCMF before the proclamation be made.


Mark your calendar as you plan your vacation ahead with five long weekends next year.