Amazing Travels in the Philippines - From Manila to Subic: A Trucker's Travelogue

March 15, 2012: A chaperon for trucking sked

It's more of a road trip but I might as well tell you in a travelogue form the chronology of exciting events that happened to me on that date.

I agreed to be the second man or a chaperon in a trucking service of my friend's forwarding company. It was bound to the central part of Luzon, Philippines.

It meant: from Manila, the driver, who's the cousin of the owner, will carry the goods to Subic, Zambales.

So, to make the story short, around 8:00 AM, I was literally ushered to the front seat and donned my seat-belt (a must!) and started our journey to the Luzon Expressway.

One thing you'll brave here in my country, aside from traffic, is the series of toll gates that await the commuters from town-to-town or city-to-city or provinces.

Well, contractors of our super highways here came from multi-national companies from South Korea, Japan, Malaysia or China.

Just a piece of advice: if you're interested to travel here using your own car, you must also carry an ample fund of cash (money), so that, you'll reach your destination without delay.

I've taken lots of photos while traveling, good shots and hazy ones. We just stop at the roadside, to empty our bladder and ate our lunch at the roadside eatery.

We've reached our destination, Subic, Zambales, past 12:00 PM. We've waited for the guard's instruction to let us in at the factory's facade and the signing of cargo's receipt, then went back to Manila around 5:00 PM.

The summer air varied from polluted (in Manila) into fresh one in the cities and towns of Valenzuela, Bulacan, Pampanga, Bataan and Zambales.

Traveling north was exciting and fun.

My only regret is that I cannot appreciate the scenery and awesome spots as tourist.

I'll be back there, both as a hiker and a photographer, for sure!


A One-Day Travel to Northern Philippines

show route and directions
A markerManila, Philippines -
Manila, Philippines
[get directions]

B markerPampanga, Philippines -
Pampanga, Philippines
[get directions]

C markerBataan, Philippines -
Bataan, Philippines
[get directions]

D markerSubic, Zambales, Philippines -
Subic, Philippines
[get directions]

My Travel Photos: From Manila to Subic

Click thumbnail to view full-size
The driver, Kuya Ruslin Besas and yours truly, Travel Man aka Ireno AlcalaToll gate at Magallanes, Pasay, ManilaSomewhere in BulacanValenzuela City highwayThe Heroes statue in BataanA mountain in BataanA native house -bahay kubo - at Dinalupihan, BataanRiver crabs at Lubao, PampangaSan fernando, PampangaSANDS The aftermath of Pinatubo eruption in Pampanga way back 1991Pinatubo sand at Porac, PampangaSwamp in PampangaPampanga signageDried ragiwdiw - used in basketmaking in PampangaNative movable houses near the road at PampangaRoad display at San Fernando, PampangaSubic underpassA resthouse/store near a gas station in SUbicSubic highway 1Subic highway 2Past 12:00 PM at SBMA area , Subic ZambalesManila Times, IntramurosAround 5:00 pm, at the PICC Manila
The driver, Kuya Ruslin Besas and yours truly, Travel Man aka Ireno Alcala
The driver, Kuya Ruslin Besas and yours truly, Travel Man aka Ireno Alcala
Toll gate at Magallanes, Pasay, Manila
Toll gate at Magallanes, Pasay, Manila
Somewhere in Bulacan
Somewhere in Bulacan
Valenzuela City highway
Valenzuela City highway
The Heroes statue in Bataan
The Heroes statue in Bataan
A mountain in Bataan
A mountain in Bataan
A native house -bahay kubo - at Dinalupihan, Bataan
A native house -bahay kubo - at Dinalupihan, Bataan
River crabs at Lubao, Pampanga
River crabs at Lubao, Pampanga
San fernando, Pampanga
San fernando, Pampanga
SANDS The aftermath of Pinatubo eruption in Pampanga way back 1991
SANDS The aftermath of Pinatubo eruption in Pampanga way back 1991
Pinatubo sand at Porac, Pampanga
Pinatubo sand at Porac, Pampanga
Swamp in Pampanga
Swamp in Pampanga
Pampanga signage
Pampanga signage
Dried ragiwdiw - used in basketmaking in Pampanga
Dried ragiwdiw - used in basketmaking in Pampanga
Native movable houses near the road at Pampanga
Native movable houses near the road at Pampanga
Road display at San Fernando, Pampanga
Road display at San Fernando, Pampanga
Subic underpass
Subic underpass
A resthouse/store near a gas station in SUbic
A resthouse/store near a gas station in SUbic
Subic highway 1
Subic highway 1
Subic highway 2
Subic highway 2
Past 12:00 PM at SBMA area , Subic Zambales
Past 12:00 PM at SBMA area , Subic Zambales
Manila Times, Intramuros
Manila Times, Intramuros
Around 5:00 pm, at the PICC Manila
Around 5:00 pm, at the PICC Manila

Places to see in Central Luzon, Philippines

Aside from Metro Manila, where Rizal Park is situated and lots of heritage sites to visit (as in churches and places), places that come to mind up central and north will be always Baguio City, Subic (Zambales), Bataan, Pampanga or Ilocos region.

We all know that the occupancy of American G.I.s divided the sentiments of many Filipinos, where the campaign to oust the military bases came to reality during the Ramos administration in the early 90s.

This time, they're back again but most of them are tourists and still enjoy the scenery and write or blog about it.

Like what I'm doing now, you've got to visit the following provinces at the northern part of the country every summer. Fares are cheap. Foods and refreshments are delicious. Beaches abound everywhere.

Where to go:

  1. Bulacan - located immediately north of Manila; lots of heritage sites, like the Barasoain church where the first declaration of independence happened; Angat Dam is located here powering water supplies in Metro Manila and nearby cities. Hikers should trek the Mt. Oriod, highest point of the province.
  2. Valenzuela - 14 kilometers north of Manila; lots of feasts and celebration from April to May each year, just like any other provinces.
  3. Pampanga - bordered by the provinces of Bataan and Zambales; home of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo; lots of heritage sites to see; Sandmining at Porac provides jobs to many people and income to the place; lots of swamps for migratory birds; known as culinary capital in the Philippines.
  4. Bataan - known for Death March during Japanese war; the place is a rocky extension for Zambales mountains; you can hike the Mt. Samal and other mountains or enjoy the beaches overlooking Subic and South China sea.
  5. Zambales - Subic Bay International Airport is here; tourists flock the province, especially Subic, due to its beach resorts, casinos, cottages, parks and historical artifacts.

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Comments 6 comments

wwolfs 4 years ago

It sounds as though you had an interesting road trip and that your ride may have been a little bumpy. Not sure what the trucks are like there but I am thankful for air ride today.

Many years ago, before I became a driver, they didn't come like that and I heard it was a rough ride.

I have never been to the Philippines but you did a great job on your hub and you took some really nice photos.

Voted up and awesome!


earthbound1974 profile image

earthbound1974 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

A road trip with a twist. I'm sure you'll be back there.

Good luck on your future adventure, travel man! :D


Romano Arnesto profile image

Romano Arnesto 4 years ago from Philippines

I'll trace back those roads you've taken. It is a very interesting ride!


travel_man1971 profile image

travel_man1971 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines Author

@wwolfs: Thanks for appreciating my adventure-hub.

Yes, it's just once in a blue moon, since I don't have experience in trucking services and delivery.

Good thing, one of my friends recommended me to be a one-time assistant during that day.

It's been a blast to be traveling in a cargo car with lots of stops and photography in-between. :D


travel_man1971 profile image

travel_man1971 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines Author

@earthbound1974: Yes, I am sure be back there; just don't know when.

If time permits, while working, I'll always record accounts regarding my travel in and outside the Philippines.


travel_man1971 profile image

travel_man1971 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines Author

@Romano Arnesto: Yes, it is! Anyone can! Others are having good time traveling every day.

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