Touchdown Asia – Philippines, Manila

They are often big, busy, noisy, dirty and smell sewer. On the other hand, they are often funny, cheap and offer amazing food. I’m talking about the big south east Asian cities. The capital of Philippines, Manila, is not an exception. My intention was only to stay here one night before heading to Vietnam, but I decided to stay three nights, which is more than enough. Compared to Singapore, Hong Kong or Bangkok – Manila isn’t very beautiful or has much to offer as a traveler. It’s actually pretty ugly and boring, but for some reason that was totally fine for me now. I treated myself with a hotel night for the 3rd time on this trip and last time was in Colombia in November when I was sick. The reception lady told me it was my lucky day, so I got a room on the 32nd floor of 34 possible. Room with a view, thanks!

When you think of Philippines as a travel destination you probably come to think of beaches and clear blue waters. That was my plan as well, but after a lot of beach time in Australia I changed my mind when arriving here. Instead I just took this as a short city-trip on my way to Vietnam. I found 3 days here more than enough and as many times before on my trip, I have to remind myself how lucky I am living in a city (Oslo) that’s fresh, beautiful, clean, safe and not noisy or hectic. Especially when so extremely many people live in massive dirty and busy cities like this one or other ones in Asia or Latin-America.

So it’s time for a new continent, new adventures and for sure a totally different way of living compared to the last two months in New Zealand and Australia. From now it will be dirty, noisy and not as civilized but I’m so ready for it and looking forward to a more simple (and cheaper) lifestyle for a while. The coming 5-6 weeks will be spent in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar. For some reason I’ve never been attracted to these countries, even though everyone says they are so amazing. I really hope they are right.