Travel Chronicles – Getting Around Tacloban City
Here was my travel plan:
- To Sight-see – San Juanico Bridge, Government Buildings, Parks, Shrines/Museum, Beach, and Historical Landmarks
- Know Accessibility – How to get around this city cheaply.
- Find a Comfortable Lodging – AC Room, With TV, With Free WiFi, With Own CR, With Cable TV, and cheap (less than P1000/night).
- Explore Local Food – What do locals eat here? What is their favorite food?
Well, not all of those things were done because we got lazy. The afternoon sun was really hot. And after looking at 3 lodgings, we decided to stay at Grand Royal Suites. We first checked Hotel Lai Rico (with wifi), then checked Highness Pension (no wifi), and then finally at Grand Royal Suites (with wifi). Although Grand Royal Suites had wifi, my laptop was not able to connect to the internet (there is wifi signal but poor internet signal). Room was at P850 – double bed, ac, cable tv, hot & cold shower.
How to get to downtown Tacloban City from airport?
After arriving Daniel Romualdez Airport, walk alongside parallel to the building, to your left after exiting the arrival gate. You will reach the main road. If you want to ride the public jeep to the downtown Tacloban City, just walk until you reach this main road. It would be normal at any airport that a person will offer you transfers, it would be best if you just go straight ahead passing these invitations. You must be at the side of the airport building (near the departure gate) when you reach this main road. If you end up in the rotunda or the circle road, chances are that you will be able to ride the jeep that goes to downtown and new bus terminal at a fare of P50/person. The jeep that goes to downtown only really looks like this P50-fare jeep. I guess if you ride at the side of the airport building or maybe elsewhere, you will be able to ride the Public Jeep. And the fare from Airport to Downtown is P13/person only (as of Feb 2012).
How to go to the New Bus Terminal from Downtown Tacloban City?
The multicab we rode, coming from Avenida Veteranos corner Paterno St, has a sign board of “New Bus Terminal”. This multicab took a longer route (please check map below). I think there are other routes that goes directly to the New Bus Terminal. Anyway, the fare here is P8/person.
How to get to San Juanico Bridge from the New Bus Terminal?
1. There is a jeep at downtown that ply the route up to San Juanico Bridge only. But we were not able to ride this one.
2. It is also possible to wait at the AH26 road junction after riding any multicab. And just wait any jeep or bus that will pass by the San Juanico Bridge. But since we were not familiar on what sign board to look at the jeeps/or bus, we decided to proceed to the NBT (New Bus Terminal).
3. At the NBT, we asked some people there. How do we go to San Juanico Bridge? What bus best to ride? The answer was any bus that goes to Samar. But I think the best answer there was the bus that goes to Basey Samar. The fare using this bus was P10/person.
How to go back Downtown Tacloban City from San Juanico Bridge?
My best answer here is to wait buses or jeeps that goes back to Tacloban City. In our case, the first to pass by was a jeep. It was a jeep that ply the Downtown-San Juanico route. The fare was P13/person. And this jeep go straight at downtown near the Market at Burgos St.
What did we eat while at Tacloban City?
While walking the stretch of Avenidas Veteranos, we bought puso rice and chicken barbeque. Also we bought the small pineapple that I think it was imported from Taiwan. And also we bought this special Turon (P5/pc). I call it special because it has Langka inside and rolled in Star Margarine and sugar! Indeed Delicious! And at night we decided to eat at Ocho Grill Restaurant.
How to go to Airport coming from downtown?
After we checked out, we went straight to McDonald’s for breakfast. From there we rode a jeep with a sign board of “San Jose Airport”. Fare was P13/person. Along the way, we were able to see usual historical landmarks such as the Sto Nino church, Sto Nino shrine, some old buildings that is now used as establishments, the Convention Center, the Public Market, to old Bus terminal, the Calvary Hill, and the boulevard along Real St.
So there it goes. I know it is rather incomplete. But I do hope my tips will be useful to those who want to do a DIY trip to Tacloban City.