Travel Bits – A Blessed New Year 2023!

We spent our New Year’s Eve at Dalian Peak Hotel in Clark, Angeles, Pampanga. We stayed from 30 December 2022 until 1 January 2023.

It was a blessing in disguise from the start of our travel. We were early for the supposedly 8:15 AM bus of Genesis but when we arrived there was no bus for the said 8:15 AM schedule. The next bus schedule was 10:00 AM. We then decided to ride a Joybus, which is also part of Genesis bus company, and dropped off at the Dau bus terminal. This is much better instead of waiting for the 10:00 AM bus since we were avoiding the traffic.

The bus for Dau left at 8:00 AM and we arrived at Dau bus terminal at around 1:00 PM. It was a blessing in disguise still because now we were able to know how to commute and what jeepney we will ride on. We walked a few meters outside Dau terminal and just outside Hotel Sogo – Dau. We crossed the street and took a jeepney to go to SM Clark. The fare is 12.00 pesos per person. We alighted at Bayanihan Parking Terminal which is near Astro Park and SM Clark.

We walked a few meters and crossed the Manuel A. Roxas Highway. The landmark is Chowking and Jollibee which is across each other on Teodoro Street. We walked a few meters and saw Southstar Drugstore, Fields Avenue. The third street starting at Fields Avenue and the corner of Teodoro Street is Elisa Street where Dalian Peak Hotel is located.

Dalian Peak Hotel is really near SM Clark. Another landmark is the Sta. Maria Elementary School which is literally just beside this hotel. You don’t need to ride a tricycle, just walk.

Dalian Peak Hotel offers a small swimming pool on its rooftop, possibly four-feet deep, good for children and adults. Just good enough for relaxing and it has a magnificent view of Angeles including SM Clark and even Mount Arayat.

We booked a deluxe double-bed unit which also included buffet breakfasts for 31 December 2022 and 1 January 2023. The breakfast for the former was eggs, sausages, and ham. The breakfast for the latter was eggs, fried bangus (milk fish), and pork adobo with potatoes. It was worth it for the price we paid. We were even the only ones swimming at the rooftop swimming pool at that time.

We were also able to watch the fireworks display at SM Clark last 30 December 2022. Then went home and ate our own packed food consisting of shrimps, ham, biko, and lumpia shanghai. We bought 1 liter of Root Beer, Piattos, Nova, and 6.6 liters of water at Uncle John’s convenience store.

It was also our first time as a family to watch a movie together at a cinema and not just ordinary cinema, it was an IMAX movie theatre at SM Clark. We paid 690.00 per person regardless of age excluding the month-old babies. Since Yvan and Ymra were 6 years old and 2 years old, we have to pay the whole price of 690.00 pesos each for a total of 2,760.00 pesos. We watch Avatar 2, The Way of Water. We were not able to attend the 6 PM vigil mass because the movie was 3 hours and 12 minutes. It started at 2:45 PM and ended at 5:58 PM.

After watching the movie, it was still a blessing in disguise because we were able to order a last-minute order at Classic Savory. We bought Pancit Bihon worth 265.00 pesos and Shanghai Rolls worth 275.00 pesos. Love also bought assorted mini-cakes at Hannah Marielle’s. We slept for a few hours then I woke them up almost 30 minutes before midnight. We left the two and hurriedly went to the 9th floor and saw that there were people waiting on the rooftop too. So, we hurriedly woke up Yvan and Ymra and went to the rooftop too. We also waited for the New Year there and watched the fireworks in Angeles City. It was a great experience and a different perspective because we viewed the fireworks on a rooftop of a hotel.

Going back home, was another blessing in disguise. There was no scheduled bus that arrived at SM Clark at 11:30 AM. At around 11:40 AM, we decided to go to the Dau bus terminal. The fare for the tricycle was 150.00 pesos which is too much. We decided to walk up to Bayanihan Parking Terminal. We just traced back our steps when we arrived last 30 December 2022. We saw a jeepney going to Dau, the sign is SM Clark – Dau. The fare is 12.00 pesos. We paid 36.00 pesos and just put Ymra on the lap. We dropped off at Hotel Sogo and walked to the Dau bus terminal.

It was another blessing in disguise because a Genesis bus arrived but was already full even though we were already inside and hurriedly went out again. Love saw a Solid North bus that just arrived which was not full. So, we hurriedly went inside and were able to ride home safely. Upon arriving at Baguio City, we were able to attend the 4 PM Sunday Mass at Baguio Cathedral which is also a day of obligation since it was the Solemnity of Mary The Holy Mother of God.

The fares going to Dau from Baguio via Genesis bus are 423.00 (regular) and 338.00 (students) while the fares going to Baguio from Dau via Solid North bus are 503.00 (regular) and 402.00 (students).