Saturday, December 28, 2013

Christmas in the Philippines

This year we decided to do something different than open presents in the comfort of our home.  We packed up an went to Cebu, Philippines to stay at the very kid-friendly Shangri-La Mactan.  Like usual the flight to the Philippines was nasty.  We left Shanghai at 1:30, made it to Manila by 8:30 and had a 5:00 am flight the next morning (our original flight was cancelled).  To get some sleep we decided to get a hotel.  The 'hotel lounge' booking office at the airport had us talk to a 'local' hotel.  We agreed on a price and off we went for the 10 minute, $9 shuttle ride.  When we got there the price was not the same and we were in the middle of a war zone, not feeling safe.  So we got back into a real taxi, yelled at the cabby in order to put down the meter (changed price from $7 to $1.50) and we were back at the hotel to sleep in the lobby for the night...
Kids sleeping on metal benches at Manila Airport

Mama trying to get some shut-eye.

When we got to the hotel it was still before 7 am so we had breakfast and played at the resort.   The first day felt like 3 days since we did so much.

We get our Chinese Mangos from Cebu, where we were.
The mangoes for breakfast each day were like candy!

On day 2 we played around the resort and made a poor mistake to take the hotel shuttle into the mall.  It ended up being about 3 hours in the shuttle for a 5 mile ride with about 1 hour in the mall.  The traffic was really bad.

We traveled through the real city on the way to the mall.

The local bus system.  Packed into these privately owned buses.

Happy Hour drinks on the water
Sunset at the beach.  

There were a bunch of ghost crabs at night.

I'll keep this blog about the trip getting to the resort, the resort and other stuff.  The Christmas Eve with the Whale Sharks will be the next episode.

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