Skating - Calatagan - Philippines                                                                                                                             Return

Calatagan is south of Manila, about a 2 and 1/2 hour drive. an old city. Calatagan is South West of Manila on the shore of the South China Sea and on Zobel Highway. The highway is a two lane blacktop that is in far condition, and pretty good for skating. The only issue is the SUN. Wow it can get hot here. Our last day of my last trip I was skating, Ray was on his bicycle, we were fine, it was a bit cloudy, then the sun came out and I was wilted in about 10 minutes. When there we always stay at the hotel Lago De Oro. www.lago-de-oro.com   It is a nice hotel, clean rooms, good restaurant, and a cable ski lake. You can rent a wakeboard or waterskis. Wakeboarding here is different than behind a boat, no wake. Other than that it is good for practice, and unlike a boat you can practice all day at your own schedule. One tip, carry a pair of flip-flops in you life vest, if you crash somewhere out on the lake you will want to put these on before you walk out, lots of sharp shells on the lake floor.

The ocean is directly west, so great sunsets!!!

Blading here is fun, lots of friendly people on the road, some slight hills, nothing to worry about. Keep an eye on traffic. Big trucks use the highway, but they all gave us room. We skated past sugar cane farms, churches, country road side fish stands (smelly!). Good fun. The sun gets hot and can melt the asphalt making the surface a bit tricky in spots. I learned to take care on the really black spots, they were often places where my wheels could sink into.

People would come up on their bicycles and motorcycles and say HELLO and the like. Almost everyone on the road side would wave and call out "HEY JOE" How did they know that was my name??? Keeping my ears open for trucks and buses was important. HEY JOE!!

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Category

Category Description

Graph

Explanation

Road Surface

Describes road surface conditions

 

The road surfaces here I experienced were not bad. The sun gets hot and can melt the asphalt making the surface tricky in spots. I learned to take care on the really black spots, they were often places where my wheels could sink into. Staying focused all the time was important.

Road Conditions

Is there enough room for skating on the road? Are intersections crossable?

The roads were pretty busy, but we never had a problem skating. Roads were wide enough for the most part so we could share with cars. Traffic always was friendly towards us. Traffic could be busy at times so I had to keep my eyes, and ears, open. There are lots of bicycles, and motorcycle taxis. They go about the same speed as I do so that is fun, skating with them.

Traffic Conditions

Describes level and condition of traffic. Is the traffic heavy, fast or erratic.

Traffic was ok, sometimes a bit busy. Big trucks and busses use this road, so when I heard them coming I quickly learned to move as far over as I could. I had to keep my eyes, and ears, open. But everyone was friendly and unlike the USA no cars tried to frighten me or make as to hit me. (What is it with the drivers in America) The roads were often busy, but we never had a problem with cars when skating. People would come up on their bicycles and motorcycles and say HELLO and the like. Almost everyone on the road side would wave and call out "HEY JOE" How did they know that was my name???

Driver Attitudes

Describes how drivers react to and treat skaters

 

I was a polite skater in Calatagan, (as always) and everyone was friendly and unlike the USA  and no cars tried to frighten us or make as to hit us. The roads could be busy at times, but I never had a problem skating.

Danger Level

Describes overall danger of skating in this location. Everyplace is dangerous to street skate. Street skating means crumbling roads, bad drivers (or worse), air pollution and even nature. But some places are more dangerous than others

Roads were ok. People friendly. The Sun is the real challange.

Criminal Factor

How serious is crime in this location.

 

I hear stories about crime and the Phillipines but myself I have not seen anything, have not heard anything about something happening firsthand. Lovely, friendly people

Cool Factor

Is this a cool place to skate.

Nice. Skating through the country here is fun, stopping and chatting with friendly people. Tired? I just stop at one of the many drink stands and have something and chat to the friendly people.

Fun Factor

Is this a fun place to skate.

 

Yes. I wanted to skate at night, but Ray was concerned about the road at night. I thought with the sun gone it would be much better. Maybe next time.. It was so much fun to pass people and see there surprised expressions. Everyone, even the police were very nice to us. Oh and Great Sunsets!!

Sidewalks

Are there sidewalks, and if there are what are they like? Often having sidewalks can be worse than not having them. With a bad sidewalk drivers may assume you should be using it - no matter how dangerous it is to use, and react very badly when they see you on the road instead of the sidewalk.

 

What is a sidewalk???

Misc

Any other conditions or issues that were found while skating here

 

 The Sun!!!! Man it is hot here!!!!

Summary

A summarization of the skating experience at this location.

This is a fun, but hoe place, roads are ok. People are friendly.

Desire to Return - Overall Rating

The bottom line. Is the place good enough that we want to return here to skate it more. With all the above taken into consideration how much are we looking forward return and skate this location further.

 

Return? Sure. But next time I am wakeboarding during the day and skating earlier or later when it is cooler.s to see and skate.

Photo Gallery

Disclaimer

                                                                                 

 

Services

Airport Pick Up

Please arrange car pick up to and from airport.

Airport Tax

All travellers leaving the country by way of Manila international airport must pay a Peso 550 departure tax.

Business Hours

Private and government offices are open either from 8 a.m to 5 p.m or from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Some private companies are open on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon. Most shopping centers and department stores are open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. Most banks operate from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays.

Clothing

Summer-weight clothing is suitable in Manila. Conducting business calls in short or long-sleeved shirt and tie without a coat is common and acceptable. However, for formal meetings, either a two-piece suit or the native "barong tagalog" (a lightweight, long-sleeved shirt worn without a tie) is the popular attire. Light suits and dresses are appropriate for women.

Currency

PHP (Philippino Peso)

Custom Rules and Regulations

Tobacco Products: 200 cigarettes (double for residents) or 50 cigars or 250g tobacco.

Alcoholic Beverages: 2 bottles of wine and 2 bottles of liquor.

Entry Requirements

All visitors to the Philippines must have a valid passport for a period of not less than six months beyond the intended period of stay. Visas are required for all visitors except: 1) transit passengers; 2) foreign tourists and business travelers, provided that their length of stay does not exceed 21 days, passports are valid, and they have return or onward tickets; 3) citizens of Hong Kong, British and Macau are allowed to enter the Philippines without visas for a stay of not exceeding seven days. Visitors can get visa extensions by visiting the Bureau of Immigration in downtown Manila, though the process can take up most of a day. Many travel agencies can handle the task for you for a fee of about 500 pesos.

Health Risks

Among the most common diseases in the Philippines are dengue hemorrhagic fever, hepatitis and cholera. Wear long sleeves or bring plenty of insect repellant when visiting rural areas. Drink bottled water.

 

 

Language

Pilipino is the national language. English is widely spoken and is extensively used in business and government, making the Philippines the third-largest English-speaking country in the world. Chinese and Spanish are other major languages spoken by some groups, aside from about 100 regional dialects.

Local Climate

The city is protected from extreme weather conditions by the hills of the Eastern Cordillera to the east and by the mountains of Bataan Peninsula, which lies west of Manila Bay. The tropical climate is characterized by a wet season that lasts from June to November and by a dry season lasting from December to May. High humidity and thunderstorms are common in July, August, and September, when more rain is received than in other months.

Name of Airport

Ninoy Aquino International Airport. It is about 9 kilometers from the Makati business district, but the ride can take up to two hours in rush hour traffic or heavy rains. An airport tax of 550 pesos is charged upon departure. For general information call tel: 877-1109; for flight information, tel: 833-8135.

Phone adaptors

Power adaptors


Tipping

The standard practice is to add 10% of the total bill in restaurants. However, some establishments already include a 10% service charge, making additional tipping optional. For cabs, it is customary to round off the fare.

Useful Links

Philippines - Department of Tourism - OnLine
CIA -- The World Factbook -- Philippines

Useful Numbers

Call 117 for Police assistance
Flight Information: 877-1100; 833-8135
Visa Card hotline: 1-800-1111-9015
MasterCard hotline: 1-800-1111-0061

Voltage

220V

 

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