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Philippines

An Island Nation

Life’s a beach in Ph

Arguments persist as to how many islands there are in the Philippines, but the estimate is about 7000+. That means there are miles of white sandy beaches and many great surfing beaches. The nation is rich in history, there was trade and migration between neighbouring islands and countries prior to the Spanish arrival in 1521. The Spanish moved in and successfully converted almost the entire population to Catholicism and today Philippine national costume reflects colonial Spanish dress.

After world war 2, the Philippines became an American dependency (USA) and although independent, the US influence is very strong. As such, the country has been plagued by political and criminal corruption but by

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Kalayo Music

World Music from the Philippines

Kalayo was formerly known as the Pinikpikan Band, a group of musicians who dared to be different and if you listen, you’ll hear influences of Sanatana, Jimi Hendrix and a range of New Age sounds. They are to the Philippines what Osibisa was to the UK, rebels and consequently pioneers.

Kalayo is a Visayan-Filipino word for “fire” which sounds more inspiring than Pinikpikan which translates to flogging a chicken; a horrid method of killing chickens before cooking. Kalayo is flame; be it yellow, blue, red, green or violet, the heat of their music will always make you feel hot and want more.

Officially formed in 1999, the band has made four music cd albums

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The Real Truth

The Philippines stands up to the world

The USA has dominated the world for the past 60 or so years, it’s economic, military and social policies have been forced on most nations and often at the point of a gun. The Philippines is no exception, US troops evicted the Spanish over 100 years ago giving the Filipinos hope of independence. But the Americans refused to go away until their political policies had become entrenched.

Up until World War II, the Philippines was a very inconspicuous nation easily overrun by the Japanese who again were evicted by the Americans and Filipino militias. When the war was over the Americans turned the Pacific back to the US’s ‘big backyard’ and of

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A Grand Cleanup

Best wishes to the Philippines new president, Rodrigo Duterte

Rodrigo Duterte is a Filipino lawyer and politician of Visayan descent who began serving as the 16th President of the Philippines on June 30, 2016.

He is the first Mindanaoan president of the country and he has stirred a great deal of controversy at home and abroad. He is brutally honest and he does not pander to political correctness. John Oliver and other foreign media commentators insult him, the criminals fear him but a group of UN technical experts from reputable international civil Service organisations and think tanks have judged Mr. Duterte as the best President during the period under review.

Mr Duterte stepped into the role as president of a

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Angeles City

Sin City

Girls at Edelwiess

Such is the reputation of Angeles city. The reason for this is that the United States in force occupied Clark Field otherwise known as Clark International airport for many years between World War II and the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991. This was the largest United States military facility outside of the continental United States.

The US troops of course demanded sex from the women of local populations and gave rise to the sex industry which is widespread across Asia. I’m not saying that the local men didn’t like a little titillation on the side, but it was much more subtle and in keeping with local traditions.

For many years

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Poracay Resort

More fun in the sun

Close by the village of Porac which is only 10 km south of Angeles city or 20 km from San Fernando, you will find another Philippine resort offering time out and accommodation.

This area was inundated by fallout from the Mount Pinatubo eruption that devastated the region in June 1991. Driving through the area today there is little trace of the volcanic fallout unless you are an expert and know what to look for.

The park itself has been carved out of the volcanic scoria and includes various swimming pools and a slightly larger pond where you can even fish and kayak.

Like most theme parks, Poracay is a good place to take

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Philippine Butterfly Gardens

Butterfly Farms and Gardens

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Butterflies are the most beautiful and colourful members of the insect world and the name for butterflies in Filipino is Paruparo. The Philippines is endowed with many butterfly species which you may see in the wild if you’re very lucky.

But the surest way to see these colourful insects is to visit one of the many butterfly gardens. At the smallest, butterfly gardens are simply meshed enclosure where the butterflies are bred and you can walk amongst them.

However Filipinos like to do things in style and to do them big. Therefore your visit to a butterfly garden is likely to be a theme park, so you may want to take your lunch,

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Hinduism in Cambodia

Part of and ancient Vedantic Empire

Our knowledge of the world and its history is poorly known, but in the past few years it has become well-established that what people refer to as Hinduism which may be better described as Vedanta influenced all life from the Mediterranean to the Pacific.

Over 2000 years ago, Indian elephants helped to build Roman edifices and before them, Vedanta helped to shape Greek civilisation. But in the Far East architects and builders from India created the great temple complexes of Angkor Wat and Angkor Tom. Not only that, you’ll find Sanskrit words in the Filipino language and the Japanese and Korean temples all feature Hindu deities.

In fact Southeast Asia is filled with what

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Filipinos can Sing

The Filipino industry of sound

Music and song is culturally endemic and for many career minded Filipino’s, a good voice can launch a great career.

The Aegis Band performing in Christchurch, New Zealand 31-01-15 Charice Pempengco; a child star who’s reputation soared after her appearance on the Ellen DeGeneres show. Pinikpikan Butanding

Consequently almost every Filipino learns to sing from a young age and for many it represents a pathway out of poverty. Whe you’re touring the country, there’s music everywhere and people either singing along or wowing the performer.

It’s hard to believe that many girls who are scarcely five feet tall can hit and hold those high notes that many singers can only dream of.

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Philippine Transportation

Jeepney’s, Taxis, Buses

Unlike much of Asia, transportation is not as cheap and one fact Westerners soon discovers is that the stature of the Filipino people is small and a vehicle that can accommodate an entire Filipino family may be a tight squeeze for one large built person.

Regional centres are well serviced by ferry, air and bus while Jeepneys are the most common transport within regions and between towns while around town the Philippine version of the Tuk Tuk a small motorcycle with a side car or tricycle is the most used transportation. Taxis are popular in some cities with car or van hire hire providing other options which generally include a driver.

The roads are narrow and congested,

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Shopping

Indigenous products and top brands at bargain prices

SM Mall San Jose

Filipinos love to shop and shopping in the Philippines can be an adventure. All over the country you will find everything from roadside stalls, small village markets selling fresh produce and crafts to huge shopping malls and colourful bazaars.

A preferred and easy option for visitors wanting a more familiar shopping experience as well as respite from the heat are the large shopping malls which can be found in most larger cities.

Live fresh fish (tilapia) in Floridablanca market, some jumped off the table

The SM Malls can be found in most cities and you can buy local goods along with the worlds popular brands. Note

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