Friday, September 21, 2012

Merloquet Falls; Sibulao, Vitali, Zamboanga City.. Explore it!

Busay Falls circa 2002

(16 years old at Busay Falls. I'm wearing blue shirt)

Circa 2002, me and my friends went to San Roque, Zamboanga City (Located in the west side, maybe around 10mins ride from downtown). Take note that Zamboanga proper is  small and concentrated to 1 area, the malls, stores and all the things you need. Anyway you know when you are young and restless, you tend to look for an adventures. I think teenager most of us has been to Busay Falls. It is located at San Roque, the end of winding road. It will take maybe 30 minutes hike going to the falls. I think Busay fall is still there but I'm not quite sure if its beauty was preserved up to now, considering 12 years ago, there has been lots of people locals going there - I'm not surprise its sanctity was not preserved, because 12 years ago there has been litters and trash. I may have to check it out again and if I have time go there. The trails is far better and this falls is bit small too. It has also 2nd floor but not as powerful as Merloquet.

Lets go back to now, 1 of my friend/colleagues invited us to go to Merloquet Falls. I saw this falls already in some of the posting at my FB friends page and yes, it's quite thrilling to go and see it up front. Finally, I could really see the ever popular Merloquet Falls. Merloquet Falls is located in Sibulao. Sibulao is in Vitali. So it took us around 1 hour ride going to Vitali. From Vitali you need to enter another road going to Sibulao. I think maybe 30 minutes ride or more because we got lost. There are no sign board (as expected) and we got a bit lost.  It's very far as compare to busay falls (san roque). Luckily the weather is cooperating, although there are some roads under construction but we arrived safe to our destination

Journey to Vitali went smoothly. No bumps on the road. The road to Sibulao, expect bumps and zigzag road. I almost throw up since our driver drives so fast. The distance from Vitali going to Merloquet falls probably about 7 to 10 KM or more. I'm not good at distance nor at Math. But it's far.

Then the fun begins when you arrived and start to hike. Left your vehicle in a parking lot provided. It's not the usual parking lot. I think the locals there start to make a living out of it. You need to pay an entrance, parking fees and a cottage fees. So yeah, have some money too. Just a small fee to help the residence.

Going to the falls, its not cemented anymore, it's made of red muddy soil, (how I described it). Too bad I didn't have a camera. The hike is going downhill. So better prepare but bonus part is they made some stairs and put some bamboo where you can grab. But I got so tired with going downhill as my knee hurts considering I have some ligament problem before. Its a 1 KM hikes going down and same path going back. So just be prepare.

this is the 2nd floor


1. If ever you wanted to go to Merloquet always have a guide with you. The best 1 are the local resident of Vitali.

2. Bring a car, jeepney, motorcycle etc 'cause public transpo is very rare in those area. I think 30 minutes down the road, we saw only 1 jeepney.

3. Never go there if the weather is bad due to muddy road and slippery trails.

4. Travel light. I suggest wear something comfortable and a good shoes. But I saw some bring their calderos and big pots...hehehe

5. If you have some knee injuries (like me) try to wear knee protector cos the ascending and descending are tough if you have knee problems. Some rocks are slippery. So watch your step.

6. And of course bring Money.

Things to do:

1. Pictures to the max 'cause it might be the first and the last you will go there considering the travel time and etc.

2. Swim and explore the 3rd and 4th level of the falls. If you are not afraid of heights (which I am, end up going to 2nd floor only)

3. Explore Vitali and buy some fresh shrimps and crabs too which is a bit pricey when you are in downtown.

4. Parking fees for big vehicle, 10 pesos while motorcycle, it's 5 pesos. Cottage fee is 100. Go early to avoid paying the parking fees. We went there like 9:00 AM so the person assigned to collect was not there yet..LOL

5. Lastly, do not bring any garbage, foods near the falls area. So preserved its beauty and uniqueness. Be a responsible traveler and protect nature ;-) DO NOT LITTER, BRING YOUR TRASH ALONG WITH YOU.

Hope you could come and visit Zamboanga ;)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The land of paradise "Hawaii"

Sorry, it took me a long time to blog again. I been so very busy lately. I just remember that I have a blog. Anyhow, I was travelling back and forth going to the US and doing all the paperworks needed. I came back last August 3. So it was  a bit experienced for me. Well, I do travel a bit and have been to some places in the middle east but the fly time going to Hawaii is so much. I mean well for a couch traveler like me. Need to wait at Narita for like 9 hours going to Hawaii and then coming home it took me another 4 hours waiting in Nagoya but the experience was nice..

I just can't remember how high we are but you can really see Hawaii and its so windy.

 view from the top
Was fun joyful experience but well, I have a purpose going there to take the NPTE(unluckily I did not pass the exam). We stayed at Ohana Waikiki West. I got irritated with the picture or maybe it was a tourist trap, this travel agency said we have a free breakfast and then before you can go and have your breakfast, there is this picture booth and all those stuff. They lady is telling us to take a picture and then well, here we go but after the breakfast it cost me $18 for that stupid picture. If ever you go to Hawaii never ever agree to have a picture taken by any travel agency. I learned my lesson well. And the breakfast suck big time.

they say its free but u still end up paying it for like $18 in exchange of the pic they took. What!
But to sum it up, I spent like only $120 for my 5 days trip in Hawaii. Yes, we stayed in the most expensive part of Honolulu, Waikiki but well, you can actually control how you spend.

1. Share the expenses with your group like food. 

2. Walk around and discover.

3. Yes I did go to Walmart and buy like 5 kilos of Hersheys and M&M for my pasalubong (lol)

4.) enjoy Waikiki beach.

5. Eat at this Ramen store like near Starbucks. I just forgot the name. It cost only around 5$

I can taste the MSG(not a fan) but it was a great meal though


me making the peace sign. Aloha @ Waikiki!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Rio Hondo, Zamboanga City.

Hi, my name is Jarm and I am currently living in Zamboanga City, Philippines. A place of colorful cultures, stories to tell and hell, news maker to the world. This blog aims to just maybe share my experience living and loving the city where I grew up. I was born and raised here in Zamboanga, 29 years ago.

Currently I am working as a private Physical Therapist, virtual assistant, online transcriber, translator and a wanna be editor. I was born in Rio Hondo, Zamboanga City. The word came from the Spanish  Rio means river and Hondo means deep. But actually, I did not see any river at all as far as I can remember. But the oldies said it was a river before.

Rio Hondo is sub divided into 3 barangays namely Campu Muslim, Rio Hondo and Brgy. Mariki. Majority of the population here are Tausog, Iyakan, Samal, Badjao and are from Jolo Sulu, Basilan or Tawi Tawi origin. This is a Muslim Community.

It has 2 public elementary school, the Mariki Elementary School and the Rio Hondo Elementary School. Islamic Institute of the Philippines is the only private school around the area which cater both English and Arabic curriculum. Situated also is one of the 2 state colleges in Zamboanga city, the Zamboanga State Colleges of Marine Sciences and Technology where I finished my high school  and the historical landmark, The Fort Pilar which is located nearby.

Above are some pictures of me and my siblings and a friend at our home in Campu Muslim..

                                                       Grade 1 class pic at Rio Hondo Elementary School(1989)

 Pictures of the said baranggay will be uploaded soon. I am still gathering some old pictures.


  • Visit this unique area with a local friend who knows the area very well preferably day time around 3:30
  • I suggest you walk from downtown rather than take a jeepney or tricycle. I think it will only take you 5 minutes to reach this place.
  • Bring a camera
  • See Barangay Mariki and talk to the local.
  • Eat PASTIL ( discuss later) - highly recommended
  • Gained insight of how local Muslim lives in this area.
  • Walk through the bridge of Mariki
  • Check ZSCMST campus
  • No night time visit
  •  You can hear lots of stories but to sum it up, take it from me the place is worth visiting as long as your guide is very well verse to this side of community.
  • The place is bit dirty and the houses are cramped together and the passage way are narrowed.

                2/5 - recommended for people who wants to know the other side of Zamboanga  City.


I do not own the link posted in my site. I am giving all the credit to the owner of the website.

Check some of the pictures from this website. I will try to upload a new and original photo of the place soon.