April 27, 2014

In the Limelight: Mai Flores of Budget Biyahera

Hello there! I am so happy to feature a friend in today's "In the Limelight" segment. I met today's featured traveler when they visited Leyte in November last year. It was just a few days before super typhoon Yolanda struck us. She was also one of my friends who helped us and prayed for us during the difficult times after the storm. Her blog focuses on budget travel and i love the simplicity and genuineness of her writing style. These blog posts are examples of her wonderful works: 8 Rockin' Romantic Getaways in the Philippines, How We Manage the Ups and Downs of Traveling As A Couple, and The Calm before the Storm- My Eastern Visayas Journey. Read more and discover some snippets of her travel experiences here.

Name: Mai Flores a.k.a. Budget Biyahera
Address: Born and raised in Quezon City!
Blog: www.budgetbiyahera.com

At Kapurpurawan Rock Formation, Burgos, Ilocos Norte.

Number of countries visited: 6
Number of Philippine provinces explored: 29

Favorite travel memories:
Having the best seat by the Kapurpurawan Rock Formation at Burgos, Ilocos Norte would be one of my favorites. The short trek wasn’t really exciting for an unfit person like me. But the view of the South China Sea from way up the rocks was certainly awe-striking.

Favorite travel destinations:
Ilocos (Sur and Norte), Palawan, Camiguin would be my favorite Philippine destinations to date. Hong Kong is also another favorite of mine, out of all the countries that I visited.

At Twin Lagoon, Coron, Palawan.

Most embarrassing travel moment:
My boyfriend and I actually got food poisoned while we were on our way to Pagudpud from Laoag (he bought some Kalamay from a vendor in the bus). We were already on board the bus for almost an hour when his stomach started getting upset. To make the story short, my tummy started acting up too. In a whim, we ended up getting off of the bus. And right when he was about to do his 'business' by the Talahiban, a small restaurant came into sight. Good thing there was a public restroom. We actually ran towards it, and kept laughing throughout our "session." It certainly was a poop-tale that would keep us entertained for a lifetime!

Something I learned about myself while traveling:
"When push comes to shove." This puts me right smack into some of the most intense of situations whenever I travel. I'm very much an introvert. So I'm really not into asking a lot of questions or mingling with people I don't know. But if a situation comes up, I somehow rise to the occasion.

One thing I always bring while traveling:
I never leave without my Monopod. Of course, it's a given that my handy camera goes along with it.

Injuries/illnesses incurred while traveling:
I’ve never sustained any injuries while traveling. But I broke my right 5th metatarsal last year. It was fractured a few weeks before my trip to Tacloban. I had to rebook my trip since I was already plastered with a cast.

Lost items/gadgets while traveling:
I haven’t really lost anything major yet. I guess I’m just too O.C. with the things that I bring, that I always double check if I already packed this or that.

Things/persons I miss when I'm on the road:
There’s actually two people that I miss whenever I’m on the road: My family and Rubel (that’s if I’m traveling without him). Oh, and the comforts of my own bed and bathroom. Nothing beats being confined in all of your mess!

At Ngong Ping Village, Hong Kong.

Future travel plans:
I actually have a lot on my travel bucket list. But if there’s a Philippine destination that I would want to see right away, it would be Batanes, Lake Sebu or El Nido. But if it’s an international destination, I would definitely push forward with an Indochina trip with friends.

Travel books I would recommend:
I don't have a particular travel book in mind. But if there’s any, then that would be any of Paulo Coelho’s books. He’s my all time favorite. He seems to always evoke that sense of adventure into his novels. Anyway, some of my favorites are The Alchemist, By the River Piedra I sat down and wept, and Eleven Minutes.

Travel movies I would recommend:
Serendipity, mainly because I love New York City --- even if I haven’t been there yet. NYC is just magnificent!

One tip for fellow travellers: 
Learn to crawl out of your shell from time to time. Meet new people and learn to be friends with them. Sometimes, the most important lessons and realizations in life come from the people that you meet on the road.

Sum up your travel experiences in one sentence: 
I may not be rich, but I definitely feel fulfilled whenever I wander off into another new destination. “Travel is the Only Thing You Buy that Makes You Richer.”

Favorite travel quote: 
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." - Mark Twain

Follow the next feature that will be posted in the next few weeks! :)


  1. Her most embarrassing moment made me laugh. :) Good thing at hindi na nila kailangan ma-confine pa sa hospital.

    1. Hahaha! Glad that made you laugh, Leo! Safe travels always! :)

    2. Yeah, you're right Leo! It's so difficult having that kind of problem while on the road.

    3. Mai, you're embarrassing moment is funny! :D

  2. That's why we are soul-sisters. :-)

    1. Yes, soul sisters indeed! :*

    2. Super friends talaga kayo, Pau and Mai! :)

  3. Thank you sa napakaHumbling feature, Eph! Til our next travel! :) God Bless! :)

    1. Mai, welcome and thanks too! Godspeed! :)

  4. Replies
    1. Awwwww! Thanks Shugah babe! Luvya back!! Can't wait to see you here! :)

    2. So, have you met na, Shugah and Mai? :)

  5. Love the rock formation on the first pic!

    1. Yeah, it's in Ilocos Norte and I love to go there as well..