From Places

In the Company of Two Rivers

LUANG PRABANG, Laos — “To the city center,” I say to the tuktuk driver. The bus from Vang Vieng arrived in Luang Prabang much later than scheduled and I did not anticipate reaching the city at this time. It’s already evening, and my awkward social qualities made sure I didn’t make any friends during the…

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House of Open Doors: The Manila You Don’t Know

MANILA, Philippines — Guidebooks paint two-dimensional portraits of Manila: Intramuros here, Chinatown there, traffic everywhere. Online accounts reveal all her glaring flaws: she’s noisy, highly disorganized, a little suffocating, and totally insane. Yoshke Dimen takes a leap of faith in this sorely misunderstood megacity in search of her good side and finds that only those…

My Top 20 Most Unforgettable Travel Moments of 2014 (Part 2)

Other than taking a break from the joyful impermanence of the nomadic lifestyle, the only good thing about my self-imposed travel ban is the opportunity to desperately long for the road again. The wait, the crave, the anticipation, the minute before a cartoon show begins and the wide-eyed child stares at the screen, hoping for…

My Top 20 Most Unforgettable Travel Moments of 2014 (Part 1)

It was a decision that baffled many people around me. I myself struggled with it too. Halfway through the year, I traded back my passport with a company ID, my backpack with a messenger bag. But such a move was inevitable. For almost three years, I had wandered aimlessly. But given the circumstances, I could…

Ashen Uncertainties

ZAMBALES, Philippines — “Summer is coming.” His excitement equalled the dread the Starks felt toward winter. Randy, our boatman for the day, looked forward to the peak of the dry season, which was sure to bring hordes of tourists to the shores of Pundaquit, Zambales. He would wait a couple more months. February had just started.

My Top 25 Most Unforgettable Travel Moments of 2013 (Part 2)

Something beautiful popped up in my Facebook news feed in April last year. It was a link to a Bored Panda post featuring 22 places that are hard to believe really exist. Instantly, it became a bucket list. When I reached the bottom of that page, I promised myself that I would visit all of these…

My Top 25 Most Unforgettable Travel Moments of 2013 (Part 1)

You won’t find Paris on this list. No, you won’t; I have yet to set foot on Europe. You won’t find Rio, either; South America has to wait a couple more years. And Egypt and Jerusalem? They’re my dream destinations, but no, I still have a long, long way to go to get there. There…

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