Getting around Manila is fairly convenient. There are loads of jeepneys, tricycles and pedicabs for short-distance travel, taxis (when they are willing to take you lol), buses and the LRT. It can get a bit confusing for the average traveler though; thankfully I had a local to guide me :D
E and I traveled around using all of the above modes except taxis. From Quezon City to the city center, we took the LRT from Anonas to Rekto. Before entering the station, commuters are frisked and their bags checked at the security point. Our ride was 25PHP (about RM2.50). The trains, although they looked older than the ones in Malaysia, were clean. It wasn’t very crowded in mid-morning, but evening was another story…
Crowd around 3.30pm. It wasn’t even rush hour yet!
During our stay, we experienced going on the train after work hours and it was madness. Takes the term ‘packed like sardines’ to a whole new level – I basically had my face squashed against someone’s chest and couldn’t move. Try to avoid peak hours if you’re travelling. Jeepneys will be hard to hail as well; we waited close to two hours for one before giving up and taking the train.
Observation: all the escalators are… stepalators. Because they were all broken down and we had to climb them lol.
I enjoyed riding the tricycles. They are bikes attached to sidecars which can ferry two to three people each time. These are only for inter-city travel covering short distances, and cost less than 20PHP. The ‘route’ of each tricycle is painted on the front of the sidecar.
Overall, transport in Manila is convenient, but I strongly recommend planning your travel itinerary right to avoid rush hours. The jams are bad (even worse than KL, and that’s saying something) and it gets really polluted. I got a headache while waiting for the jeepney, standing at the roadside inhaling carbon monoxide for two hours.
Arriving in E’s neighbourhood. Sari-sari stores are small neighbourhood shops selling everything from snacks to groceries and cigarettes.
We were met by his mom’s cute but mean cat, Meme. He’s a boy cat and he loves poking his head into bags.
Mean, bitey, scratchy cat. BUT HE’S SO FLUFFY
There’s also Ino, a very sweet natured white mongrel who likes to be petted. She’d lean her body against my legs and wait for me to start petting her. When I stopped, she’d make a circle and then rest herself on me again. So sweet <3