To see the perfect cone that is Mt. Mayon in June would be a long shot especially now that it has been raining everyday. Chances are it would be mostly covered by clouds. Upon doing my research though, I found out that there are different activities that we could do during our stay. We can go to nearby towns like Sorsogon or Naga, ride an ATV for a closer look of the Mayon, zipline in Lignon Hill, or go on a food trip. Being the adventure seekers that we are (NOT haha), our 4-day trip to Albay has become a journey of flavors with some sight seeing here and there. Not surprising, to be honest. 😅
1st Colonial Grill – Pacific Mall
We arrived in the afternoon and immediately settled in our accommodation c/o airbnb. The space was too homey so we snoozed and woke up at night just in time for dinner. We hopped on a tryke going to Pacific Mall which is nearby only to find out that most restos close by 9pm (we went out almost 8). Luckily, 1st Colonial Grill still accommodated us. We had BBQ liempo with unli tinapa rice! + Bicol express. Super sarap lahat especially their tinapa rice. Of course, we also tried their sili ice cream, level 1 lang coz im weak like that. haha It’s good; creamy and the spice is balanced. I might say otherwise if it was a higher level of spice. 😅 Budget : P250 / person.
Artisan’s Specialty Coffee – Imperial St.
We are ready to go around the next day even though it has been raining.. but first coffee. This minimalist cafe near SM Legazpi is easy to spot because of its clean but stylish facade. They serve 3rd wave coffee and a good selection of food. We had iced coffee, waffles and salted egg pasta na super sarap. 😋 Actually, masarap lahat.. sa totoo lang I wanted to go back but we didn’t have enough time. Budget : P350/person for food + drink.
Balay Cena Una – Daraga
It’s like the skies had a dose of coffee too and they became clear after breakfast. haha We hopped on a jeep going to Daraga to see their church and the must-see Cagsawa Ruins. It was more or less a 30-min ride going to the church then we walked a few minutes going to Balay Cena Una, an ancestral house turned restaurant and another must try when in Albay. They are known for their Crispy Bicol Express so we tried it plus some Buffalo Wings and rice of course. 5 stars for their bicol express but i’ll give 3 stars for the wings because i expected something with sauce and maybe a little spicier. 🤔 Ambience is 💯. Budget : P300/person, yung iced tea kasi P60 each, yun ang nagpamahal. lol
Bigg’s Diner – SM Legazpi
After dropping by Cagsawa Ruins, we went to the mall to cool down. We had early dinner at Bigg’s Diner which is a local chain of resto serving some Bicolano cuisines and a handful of american food. I tried their porkchop with laing meal while the boyps had a spicy cheeseburger which I was not able to try. 😅 I’m not usually a fan of laing but I can have it on rare occasions such as this; it did not disappoint. 💯 Budget : around P200/person.
21st Amendment – Old Albay
Night cap is courtesy of this speakeasy bar we found near Robinson’s Legazpi. Ambience is good except for a group of people talking (almost shouting) too loudly. Anyway, we got there just in time for b1t1 cocktails so I had a frozen margarita, boyps had beer plus nachos to share over good conversations. 🍹🍺 Budget : P250/person.
Legazpi Four Seasons – Imperial St.
We went straight to lunch the next day at this Chinese restaurant which they say serves the best fried chicken. We had to try it plus pork curry and siomai. I agree that their fried chicken is good, crispy, juicy and tasty especially with the soy based sauce. ✔️ But the curry dish is just okay and I’ve had better siomai. hehe Budget : less than P200/person.
Ice Cream at Sumlang Lake – Camalig
Another 30-minute jeepney ride will take you to Camalig where Sumlang Lake is. We went there with hopes of seeing an unobstructed view of Mayon, but we were greeted by clouds (again). We just enjoyed some ice cream while taking in a nice view. Budget: P40/cone.
Small Talk Cafe – Old Albay
We wanted to try other Bicolano food but not adventurous enough so we had something simpler instead : Bicol Express Pasta and Guinobatan Longganisa. Both tasty; i like their bite sized, kinda salty longganisa, almost similar to the ones they have in Lucban. Good eats indeed! ✔️ Budget: P150/person.
1st Colonial Grill – SM Legazpi
Yes, you read it right! We went back to 1st Colonial Grill, this time in their SM Legazpi branch, for our last meal before going to the airport. What did we go back for? Yes, their tinapa rice. 🤗 We have been raving about it since having it on our first night so we can’t do anything but have it again. Did we mention that their meals include unlimited servings of tinapa rice?! I think i’m getting hungry again just by typing this! haha It’s so good, it goes well with almost any ulam: we had baby back ribs, grilled liempo, and sisig. These are budget meals na sulit naman talaga! Masarap din yung veggie lumpia that came with the ribs. 💯 Indeed a must try resto when in Bicol!
In case you’re wondering, why are we in Bicol during the rainy season? This is the boyp’s birthday trip and we luckily spotted a flight on sale so here we are. 🤗 We also hit a jackpot with our airbnb accommodation: an A/C room with private bathroom, complete with toiletries, snacks, refillable water, cofftea/tea making facility, electronic door lock and a living room all to ourselves. All this for only P1,300 per night; near the airport, malls, market, terminals. DM me for referral link haha, shameless plug pala. 😆
Happy birthday, Chicho. More travels to come.