What’s the perfect way of having a Philippine travel tour? Touring the cities? Touring the countryside? A new trend being discovered today by many tourists is a travel tour with or among the people.
The traditional travel tour in the Philippines is to ride in posh tourist bus and lodge in classy hotels. But a new revolutionary way of doing a travel tour in the country is to travel and live among the common people. It’s a unique way of experiencing the Philippines. Common travel tours only afford beautiful sights of the country, but not its life and heart. Often, what the tourist gets with traditional travel tours are on-the-spot sceneries of what Philippine post cards show. The tourist misses the most important Philippine sight of all—real life in the country.
A travel tour with and among the people is a “live” travel tour. It’s opting to take rides in public jeepneys and ordinary buses on highways and byways, taking in dust, smoke, and the various smells of the cities. It is a travel tour of actually taking rides in crisscrossing and zooming tricycles and slow moving pedicabs. This radical travel tour opts for taking walks along sidewalks, crossing pedestrian lanes, climbing up and down overpasses and underpasses, and standing in line in bus, cabs, and train stations, or in buses and trains themselves, rubbing elbows with ordinary Filipinos.
This unusual travel tour option also means hiking long hours to get to the next town or barrio, or riding on carabao’s (native water buffalo) back, or hitching ride on a bamboo sled pulled by a native cow or carabao. This strange travel tour means riding makeshift canoes on rivers, crossing rice paddies, or hacking away at wild bushes to establish a new dirt path.
Finally, this travel tour option means asking lodging and board among residents in small apartments or bungalows in crowded city communities, or in huts or makeshift shanties in simple rural villages. It means eating native dishes (with bare hands) with common native folks and sleeping in creaking beds with natural air conditioning through wide open windows. With some 70 percent of the whole population forming the masses, we can safely assume that this is the Philippines.
Thus, with this travel tour alternative one sees and feels the true Philippines—the sights, smells, sounds, and people. And it’s the perfect travel tour to experience the heart and soul of the country. Then the tourist leaves, better equipped in heart of what the Philippines is really about.