Living In The Philippines Forum

Living in The Philippines => Places to Visit/ Things to Do => Topic started by: clevelda on September 14, 2009, 02:56:46 AM

Title: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: clevelda on September 14, 2009, 02:56:46 AM
Has anyone ridden the passenger train from Manila to Legaspi City or points in-between?

As usual, thanks for any input you might have on the topic.
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: c_a_p_t_a_i_n_r_o_n on September 14, 2009, 04:43:57 AM
Didn\'t realise there even was a railway in RP....good to know.
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: on September 14, 2009, 06:55:15 AM
They have been clearing away the squatters from the railway in Manila over the past few years, perhaps one day they will get the whole system back into working order. The overhead rail system in Manila is very good, cheap and a lot quicker than using road transport.

Colin
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: clevelda on September 14, 2009, 09:02:14 AM
Thanks for the comments.  I have read that the light rail system in Manila is very modern and very efficient.  The passenger train to Legazpi City is really slow and involves an overnight ride.  Was reading that an a/c reclining seat was .80P per Kilometer or around 400-450P.  They also have sleeper compartments, but there were no prices on those and was curious as to how much they would be. 

Would most likely take local transportation back up north or go further south.  Are there places of interest south.  I know I would have to take a ferry to get to Cebu City or I guess I could take a plane from LC ?   If I am going to be there for eight weeks, I want to make it worth my while.  Palawan looks pretty interesting too, however, could I stay there for less than a tourist rate? 



Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: on September 14, 2009, 12:36:38 PM
Palawan looks pretty interesting too, however, could I stay there for less than a tourist rate? 

What is a tourist rate?

There is plenty of inexpensive accommodation here, Pension Houses from P800 etc.

Colin
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: Manila Cockney on September 14, 2009, 01:27:28 PM
Has anyone ridden the passenger train from Manila to Legaspi City or points in-between?

As usual, thanks for any input you might have on the topic.

Thought about taking it a few years ago, to Legapsi but was warned against it

The Manila LRT is a very good way to get around Manila if you are located near a station
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: c_a_p_t_a_i_n_r_o_n on September 14, 2009, 02:37:58 PM
Thanks for the comments.  I have read that the light rail system in Manila is very modern and very efficient.  The passenger train to Legazpi City is really slow and involves an overnight ride.  Was reading that an a/c reclining seat was .80P per Kilometer or around 400-450P.  They also have sleeper compartments, but there were no prices on those and was curious as to how much they would be. 

Would most likely take local transportation back up north or go further south.  Are there places of interest south.  I know I would have to take a ferry to get to Cebu City or I guess I could take a plane from LC ?   If I am going to be there for eight weeks, I want to make it worth my while.  Palawan looks pretty interesting too, however, could I stay there for less than a tourist rate? 


Expect problems with ferries as the largest fleet SuperFerry is currently grounded after sinking of SuperFerry 9.....this was one of the larger ferry services and IMO one of the safest......but even Superferry 9 had a long list of problems
Haven\'t seen too much in the news probably because of pretty small loss of life in this latest Philippines marine tragedy.

This grounding of Superferries will increase load on other ferry operators and budget airlines too
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: clevelda on September 14, 2009, 08:53:58 PM
Yes, I read about the Ferry incident in the news the other day.  At least it didn\'t capsize, even though it had one heck of a tilt to it.  I did not tell the spouse.  She would have had cats.   It is already hard enough trying to convince her that the Philippines is a great place to retire in.  I have not looked into the prices of ferries, but see that the air fares are quite reasonable.

So, are ferry prices even cheaper than the airlines?  Has anyone ridden on the ferries and what was your opinion of them?  Just another avenue I am looking into. 

Thanks again for your input and assistance.

Daryl...
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: c_a_p_t_a_i_n_r_o_n on September 14, 2009, 09:02:36 PM
Yes, I read about the Ferry incident in the news the other day.  At least it didn\'t capsize, even though it had one heck of a tilt to it.  I did not tell the spouse.  She would have had cats.   It is already hard enough trying to convince her that the Philippines is a great place to retire in.  I have not looked into the prices of ferries, but see that the air fares are quite reasonable.

So, are ferry prices even cheaper than the airlines?  Has anyone ridden on the ferries and what was your opinion of them?  Just another avenue I am looking into. 

Thanks again for your input and assistance.

Daryl...

I regularly ride the 2 hour ferry from Bohol-Cebu & back.......only once had a problem......pulling away from dock at Tagbilaran on extremely low tide, one propellor hit something as it was last ferry of the day I suspect company went ahead one one engine only......normally 2 hour trip was about 3.5 hours

Taken ferries from
Manila to Nasipit (N. Mindanao) 1.5 days approx P3500 all meals include in top class cabin so about the same as air fares plus much more relaxing (at least for me)
Cebu to Nasipit
Jagna (Bohol) to Camiguin
Tagbilaran (Bohol) to Cagayun de Oro


a/c not working in cabins on one trip so we were in bunks in coach close, I was fine......
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: clevelda on September 15, 2009, 05:09:23 AM
Thanks Capt for the ferry information.  You know, I am really beginning to have a problem deciding where I want to go over there.  What I need to do is settle myself down and get my priorities together.  My original intentions was to explore Luzon and then take a side trip to Cebu, but I have heard very little about Luzon. 

Hence, my next question.  What attractions in the lower islands (south of Luzon) have caused so many from this forum to migrate in that direction?  Is it the weather, economics (cheaper to live there), lifestyle friendly environment, etc. that lures you fellow ex-pats into that area of the country.  Likewise, for anyone reading this forum and residing on Luzon, what are the reasons you decided to live there.  I realize that sometimes the family is the main purpose, but are there any other reasons besides that?

I really want to find a nice location to settle down in and you folks are making it difficult for me to decide which direction to meander.

So, for the sake of my sanity and this forum, if you would help me out with the questions above, it would be greatly appreciated.

bounder...
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: coutts00 on September 15, 2009, 08:49:11 AM
Bounder,

We are from all over the RP, we all have our preferences, but it largely has to do with where our families i.e. our wives and their families are from. With little exception we usually relocate to an area near our wives place of origin.

To move around Luzon, you can take planes and buses, there is a daily flight to Legazpi City, I have not taken the train, my wife says it is mostly a goods train and when I was last through the area most of the bridges where down due to mud slides.

Our family province is in Catanduanes, but we have a house in Taytay, Rizal, just outside Manila and we are currently in Australia.

We do not mean to confuse you, sit back and take it all in, for \"we\" are all over the Philippines and the \"Philippines\" is a big place. Some ferries are dangerous and others are not, I recommend buses for most trips, but don\'t sit near the front and have a good bladder, there is not to many stops on a long trip.

If you can fly then do it, there are many low cost airlines in the RP \"Republika ng Pilipinas\" or \"Republic of the Philippines\".

Mostly is it low cost.

Figuring where to settle down is fairly easy.

Just list in order of importance a few things, like:

Proximity to Hospitals
Proximity to main banks
Proximity to Shopping Malls
Do you like mostly Western Food when eating out or is Filipino fine with you?
you know the kind of questions...

Don\'t forget to add weather to your list, there are no seasons in the RP per say, its either Hot and Humid or Wet, Hot and Humid, if you want mild and humid, you need to live up on a mountain or side of an extinct volcano, plenty of them here.

Cebu is mostly out of the Typhoon belt, i.e. most Typhoons don\'t hit the area, Luzon gets more than its fair share as does Samar and Mindoro, Palawan is far out in left field, and is mostly typhoon free except the northern part.

If you have more questions, just ask, we have many here that just love to type.

Wayne   ;D ;D
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: Manila Cockney on September 15, 2009, 12:49:18 PM
As all Superferrys have been cancelled while ongoing safety inspection, one of our maids was due to travel last Thursday and had a return ticket booked. Receive text from Superferry that boat is cancelled and we can get refund. Go to get refund but they only refund one way not return on September 27, logic being return is not yet cancelled. Had argument but not got anywhere even though she will not be there for the return.
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: samatm on September 15, 2009, 10:57:38 PM
Thanks for the Funny post Cockney!   Love the logic there.    WG&A is really losing my respect if thats the way the treat paying passengers inconvenienced by their boat sinking in fair weather.  ;)  . 
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: clevelda on September 16, 2009, 12:52:28 AM
Again, thanks for all the input.  I believe I will go with my original plan this year and wander around Luzon for this first visit.  My schedule is to fly over in late January and stay for 59 days.  If finances hold out, I might make a side trip down to Cebu.  Since I am most comfortable with the buses and with no definite time schedule, I think I will travel with a Philippine attitude.  There is never any rush to get anywhere or get anything done in a specific amount of time. I don\'t mean that badly as that is why I wanted to remain in the Philippines while in the Navy.  I loved the stress free lifestyle they had/have. 

So, is the Super Ferry line the safest in the P.I.?  Or are there safer ones.  Might try out one of those, if time permits.   

The only drawback from this adventure is I really might not want to go back to the states after a couple of months there.

Bounder....
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: Gray Wolf on September 16, 2009, 03:11:07 AM
Bounder,

While you\'re on Luzon I recommend taking the bus to Baguio and check out the scene in the mountain province north of Manila.  It\'s roughly an eight hour trip with breaks about every two hours for snacks and CR breaks.  They also showed a movie on the bus during one section of the trip!  I really enjoyed the cooler weather there in Baguio.  It was a nice break from the heat of Manila.  While there you can visit Camp John Hay, the Philippine Military Academy and Mines View Park.  All are within a few minutes drive by taxi from downtown Bagiuo.  From Baguio you might take a short trip to Sagada and see the hanging coffins.  Also try a trip to the Banaue rice terraces in the same general region. 
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: coutts00 on September 16, 2009, 05:43:43 AM
Just remember, lest you wish a heart attack in your near future, do not sit behind the driver and look out the windscreen, the first time I did was the last time I swore I would go on a Philippine Bus.

Enjoy yourself, but sit back a few rows, grab a window seat and kick back.

Wayne   ;D ;D
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: clevelda on September 16, 2009, 10:18:57 AM
Wayne,

The last time I was in-country, I had a Yamaha 360 enduro motorcycle.  One day, I had a Victory Liner riding my tail and even at 70+ mph, it felt like he was gaining on me!  Back then (for all I know it could still be that way on that road), the bridges between San Narciso and Masinloc Zambales were wooden structures with two 2x12\'s for each wheel.  There were no rails or decking underneath those boards, just the bridge framework.  He wasn\'t slowing down as I hit the first bridge and was rather nervous trying to stay on the center of a 2x12 as I sped across it at that inhumane speed.  Once past, I really gunned the bike, because I knew I might not be as lucky at the next bridge.  I could envision a devilish smile on his face as his bus had a lip lock on the back fender of my motorcycle.

I have had the misfortune of sitting behind the driver\'s seat a couple of times and thought all those religious medallions on the dash might not save anyone.  Still, I miss that activity.  When I resettle, I will definitely buy another motorcycle.  It is cheap transportation and can get into a lot of places that other vehicles can\'t go (and I probably shouldn\'t go). 

Gray Wolf.  I spent a few days each year up at the Air Force Base in Baguio.  It was such a nice change with the aroma of pine filling the air. We would have the fireplace going in the cabin. I would love to see the hanging coffins in Sagada.  I loved the town market when there, and I am sure that has changed too.  There was also a Catholic (?) place where they made sterling silver items.  I purchased a silver grand piano for my music teacher from elementary school.  I really liked Baguio. 

Fortunately for me, I am retired and do make enough to live relatively well in the Philippines....whether the spouse comes or not. 

So, are there those ex-pats who winter over in the islands and then return to the states during the rainy season?

Bounder...
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: Lee2 on September 16, 2009, 10:34:01 AM
So, are there those ex-pats who winter over in the islands and then return to the states during the rainy season?

Bounder...

We sort of do that. We live in Cebu every year at least February until sometime in May, but since we live in Florida the rest of the time, we still get rained on.  :\'(  I do not really mind the rainy season in Cebu but I do hate all the flying ants and termites it brings with it. Seems all the thunder and lightening seems to wake their little butts up.  :-\\  >:(

As for big rigs tailgating you, back when I was a lot younger, I had a cure for that, it was called a pocket full or marbles and tossing them up in the air at that speed was sure to wipe a windshield out and slow the AH who is trying to kill you down, but maybe in the Philippines with all the guns, that might not be a good idea.  :-X
Title: Re: Riding on the Philippine National Railroad
Post by: coutts00 on September 17, 2009, 08:09:20 AM
Without getting too off track here, but its bounders thread... I have chased a Victory Liner or similar through the outer reaches of Luzon, down Bicol way at 140 kph at 3 am on my way to the ferry at Tabaco to get to our island hideaway. The little MF still managed to outrun me, I have been in the front seat of a bus and swearing the whole time that this guy would never get a license in the US. My wife just sat there and patted my chest the whole way saying \"your heart, your heart\". I aged 10 years in one trip.

Wayne   ;D ;D