Jona | Backpacking with a Book

January 18, 2017

Women Travelers in Vang Vieng, Laos Be Warned: A Woman Traveler Got Free Whiskey, Drugged, and She Could Not Remember What Happened Next

A note from the blog owner, Jona: I haven’t been to Vang Vieng myself, but this was not the first time I heard about hostels offering free whiskeys to guests in aaos. Tobias and I stayed in Luang Prabang, Laos for three nights, and we personally had a nasty encounter with the police. Rape and victim blaming/shaming culture is terribly strong everywhere and even institutionalized in poor countries like Laos. So travelers, especially my fellow women out there, please be warned.  Keshi who recently traveled to Laos originally posted the following in a travel group on Facebook. I asked her permission […]
December 28, 2016

Bored of Your Usual Beach Holiday? Visit These 4 Countries

Even with the world at your feet, it can be tempting to revisit your favourite places when you go on holiday. But if you’ve had enough of the same sea and sand, you can easily head to different places for a new adventure. To avoid the same tourist traps and form some once-in-a-lifetime experiences, we recommend trying the following four countries. 1. Latvia The tiny Baltic country of Latvia may boast around 350 miles of coastline, but don’t dismiss it as a relaxing beach holiday just yet. In addition to beaches, there’s four National Parks and plenty of other forests […]
December 14, 2016

ASTORIA PALAWAN | What Makes It the Ultimate Staycation in Puerto Princesa, Palawan

This post first appeared on my column Down South on Interaksyon.com. I included more photos here to give justice to the beauty of this place. PALAWAN, PHILIPPINES—An egret ambled around my deck, peering through the glass wall of my own sanctuary. It must be looking for food. Someone said these egrets must be the new generation; the older ones reserved a safe distance from humans. The way it angled and craned its neck subsisted its curiosity. I was inside my spacious and creative room, looking at it on the sun-lit deck. This animal’s presence suggested that the surrounding remained peaceful […]
December 13, 2016

TEDxUSanCarlos Talk | How Traveling Shapes Me as a Woman and a Writer

It was TEDxUPCebu that invited me first to debunk the popular dictum [quit your job and travel the world] after some of the students read my open letter Dear Isa, It Is All Right Not to Travel here on BWAB. But I’m leaving Cebu to pursue a year-long trip abroad while fending for myself through jobs online, so I declined their offer. Another opportunity knocked on my door, this time  around from the University of San Carlos. Here is the piece I shared to a very attentive crowd. “Wa ka mahadlok maglaag-laag nga ikaw rang usa? (Are you not scared traveling alone?)” I […]