A Journey of Self-Love: Hello Philippines!

I'd say one of the perks I enjoy from blogging is visiting new places and trying out things I never tried before. After what happened with my personal life a few months ago, the only thing I need is a getaway. A reboot to start fresh again. Luckily I got this invitation by Cetaphil (worldwidely known as a healthy skincare brand focusing in sensitive and acne-prone skin), to visit Philippines and do some 'adventure' there. Sounds interesting. A blogger and also a good friend of mine, Claradevi, was coming too. So I said yes immediately to this trip. Feeling adventurous and a bit clueless, we were not really knowing what kind of 'adventure' are we going to face there. This is my first time going to Philippines and I know it will be awesome. I love unexpected trips!

I believe the best way to heal your heart is by traveling. Thank God for my impulsive decision (as always), this trip turns out to be not only a physical restart, but I could say this is a life-changing experience. It took quite some time to write this post since this is rather a personal reflection for me than any usual blogging trips, it's a heart-to-heart experience. The adventure I got is rediscovering my own inner self. Rebooting my self-confidence and body image. Let's start the adventure, shall we? :)

Landed in Manila, Philippines. We rode for about one and a half hour by car and finally arrived in a beautiful scenery of jungle-ish greenery. It's San Benito, Lipa City. Far away from the city noises, I can only hear chirping birds and the sound of all other wild bugs. It's quite a remote area, a perfect place for a retreat. Me and Clara shared a room together, and here's the hut we will be sleeping in for the next 3 days. It's literally like a fairy house. No electricity, no TV or mini bar or whatsoever, with a beautiful view of all things green from the window. We sometimes have one or two gorgeous peacocks (yes, peacocks!) chilling in front of our door in the morning… A total interaction with nature, isn't that magical.

Our magical little sanctuary.

Chilling out on the front porch which is the level one of our bedroom. Loving our little hut!

What it looks like on the outside, a uniquely designed hut inspired by traditional Filipino house.

Everyday encounter with this pretty yet mysterious peacock.

Wearing my own Kasmaran Pagi Sore dress which I made myself, will be available soon at @KasmaranIndonesia, my little sewing project to express my love of Indonesia's traditional heritage. :) Pairing my batik dress with white sneakers, because why not.

 Bringing Staccato white sneakers abroad with me, 
the comfiest sneakers with extra inch on the insole for extra height. ;)

Oh, we got company! Cetaphil also invited beauty vloggers from all around Asia. From Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Philippines. We quickly get along and exchanging tips and tricks on beauty, fashion, and *of course* love life. Meheheh.

with beauty youtubers: Jamie and Roseanne from Singapore, 
Kristin and Ana Victorino from Philippines, and Clara my fellow Indonesian blogger.

On our first lunch, the table situation is so noisy already! :) We talked about our blogging background, shared happening trends from each other's country, telling each other our skin conditions, it was basically endless girl talks on the dining table every time. 

And by the way, we're having organic VEGAN foods for as long as we're staying here. I only prayed that I would not act embarrassing since I never tried vegan diet before, I simply just can't give up foods. But look what we have here…. It's actually even better than my usual meals. It's vegan, it's healthy and totally guilt-free, superb.

This colourful and (surprisingly savoury) salad. 

Mint with cocoa nibs smoothies and Jackfruit mousse. Guilt-free.

Vegan dark chocolate cake, with mango, pineapple, papaya, lime and banana smoothies.

Fresh fruits every morning!

I'm never a fan of raw veggies and any kind of salad before, but after a three-days quarantine of strict vegan diet, I could actually crave for raw veggies (What kind of sorcery is this?!) ...It's an awesome kickstart to a healthy lifestyle.

Everyday scenery.

Lovely reminder on the mineral bottle.

After lunch, we headed for Yin Yang Body Polish Spa, which is an award-winning spa as chosen by Asia Tatler Reader's Choice, and guess what, I'm not exaggerating, it is indeed one of the best spa experience I've had in my life by far. Thank you Cetaphil for treating us so dearly, and making me feel beautiful inside and out. :)

Best. Retreat. Ever.

( Continued on the next post… )

+ Pic 2, 9 and last pic credit to Claradevi.

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  1. Seru banget Ci Sonia, Jadi pengen ke Philipine.
    Nice review.

    Visit mine Ci on Monsieurdaily.com

    Just followed you on Bloglovin'

    Thank you, GBU :)

  2. That vegan food looks amazing, it must be so nourishing.


  3. You did well, traveling always helps me too. This looks beautiful.

    / Avy

  4. Perjalanan impuan aku banget nih, deket sama alam dan totally vegan. Congratulation for discovering your inner self :)

  5. I've been reading your blog for a long time and was very glad that you had the chance to visit our country! Hope you can stay longer next time. We have A LOT of beautiful beaches here!

    Curious Little Kat

  6. heal ur heart by travelling and keep love urself each days..

    totally well noted. thanks for sharing <3

    visit mine,
    Miss Aa

  7. I'd love to travel there someday! Such a fun voyage you had.


  8. Nice post, Sonia! Sometimes getting away from our normal lives help us find a different side of ourselves that we never know, I'm just glad that you had so much fun during your trip! <3 <3


  9. you always inspire me through your words Sonia, we have same age but i think you are the wisest 22th yo girl I've ever knew. Time and travelling will heal your heart sweatheart <3