So… this post is long overdue as my boyfriend and I actually did this back in November. I’ve barely had the time to sit down and paint my nails, much less write a blog post! But since my domain name has been renewed for another year, I really ought to get my money’s worth by actually blogging more so however late this post is, it doesn’t matter. At least I’m still writing about it…right?
Up until November last year, I’ve never properly wandered around Intramuros. If you’re from the Philippines, you’re probably thinking how on earth I managed to avoid it given that it’s quite an easy destination to get to. I’ve been to Ocean Park and have, many times, been driven around Intramuros, but I’ve never seen Fort Santiago, walked down Rizal Park or stepped foot inside the Basilica (Manila Cathedral) until my last trip home a few months ago.
I found out about Bambike Ecotours while putting together an itinerary for myself and my boyfriend before we travelled to the Philippines together. I wanted to show him around and I wanted us to do fun things together and since this tour involved a bicycle my boyfriend was only too happy to do this with me.
You can pre-book the tour online on the Bambike Ecotours website or TripAdvisor but they also take walk-ins, which is what we did. Although they do recommend pre-booking the tour to avoid any disappointment! There are a few different types of tours that you can go for depending on what you want to do or how much time you’ve got to spend at Intramuros.
Bambike Ecotours have the Express Tour which is an hour long for which they run two sessions – one in the morning and another in the afternoon. Then you have the Intramuros Experience Tour which runs for about 2 hours, which also runs sessions in the morning as well as the afternoon. For the night owls out there, you’ll be glad to know that they have a Night Edition of the Intramuros Experience, which is pretty self-explanatory!
We opted for the Intramuros Experience Tour which started at 10am and paid PHP 1200 per person – the exchange rate at the time was PHP 70 to 1 GBP so we paid £17.14 each! We were then made to fill out a form and sign a waiver before we got given water bottles and taken outside so we can choose our bikes. Cedhie was our tour guide and before we left, he told us a bit about the city’s history as well as what to expect during the tour.
We were quite fortunate that there was no one else apart from my boyfriend and I for the 10am tour, so we essentially got a private tour of some of Intramuros’ famous landmarks!
I won’t spoil the tour for you, but I can’t recommend it enough! We got to see Intramuros in a unique way and we were so relaxed the whole time (despite having to cycle on busy roads) because the whole tour matched our pace. Not once did we feel at all rushed and the fact that we had such a knowledgeable and funny tour guide made it even better. After the tour had finished, I was given a calamansi based drink (I can’t remember what it was called) and my boyfriend was given some type of calamansi beer that they’d brewed themselves which he downed in less than a few minutes.
Thinking of doing the Bambike tour or have you already done it? Let me know in the comments below!