Articles, Environment, Food & Travel, Zero waste

MUNI Travels to Negros: A mindful travel experience on March 9-14, 2018


This coming March 9-14, 2018, we are creating a transformative 6D/5N experience in Negros Occidental for a small group of intrepid travelers. Think MUNI Meetup on wheels! Visit places, meet people, learn new things, create meaningful connections. (Read on and apply to join the trip here.)


#MUNIonThis: A large part of living a more mindful, sustainable life is choosing to spend on enriching experiences vs. stuff.

Undoubtedly, travel is a large part of that, especially for our generation where seat sale alerts and travel deals abound, where we have all these guide books or online resources, checklists of sights for Instagram-worthy stories, posts and selfies to show our friends how well-traveled we are and how enviable our lives can be.

How can we change this checklist travel mindset?

While we don’t see travelers necessarily cutting back on their flights, or airlines switching from fossil fuels just yet, we do see that there are opportunities to create a travel experience that positively impacts both the traveler and the locals (human, flora and fauna) alike.

“To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.” – Bill Bryson

OUR TRAVEL MUNIFESTO

  • We believe in the power of travel to help you recharge, and reimagine your world, simply by giving you the time and space to step away from your day-to-day, reconnect with nature, and reignite inspiration through those you meet in your journey – locals and fellow travelers alike.
  • We believe in travel that transforms the traveler into a more aware and mindful individual by showing him that a sustainable life is possible in the places we visit, and that valuable lessons may be taken home, to be applied beyond the duration of the trip.
  • We believe that responsible travel = mindful, sustainable living. And we believe that our impact as travelers in any destination begins before we ever set foot in that place, and long after.

Related reads:
6 Zero Waste Travel Tips from an Island Manager and a Solo Female Traveler

As such, it is our goal to create a travel experience that can also:

  • Show you that living a more environmentally conscious life is possible and more meaningful
  • Give you tools and connect you with people who can support you on a continuing journey towards sustainability

This coming March 9-14, 2018, we are creating a transformative 6D/5N experience in Negros Occidental for a small group of intrepid travelers (only 10 slots available). Think MUNI Meetup on wheels! Visit places, meet people, learn new things, create meaningful connections. (Read on and apply to join the trip here.)

MUNI Travels

Visit establishments owned and run by Filipinos that work to uphold sustainable practices, and hear their origin stories too. We’ve got a little something for everyone – from island and forest destinations of Danjugan Island, to organic farms like Fresh Start Organic and Peñalosa Farms, and social enterprises like Hacienda Crafts.

And because the experience is all about connecting people, we will also arrange a MUNI Meetup, in collaboration with zero waste business Hamsa Earth-Conscious Collections, for you and your fellow travelers to learn more about the zero waste movement in Negros and meet with other changemakers and like-minded advocates on your first night!

The highlight of the trip will be Danjugan Island – a conservation area off Cauayan, 3 hours south of Bacolod city, where we will be spending 3 days and 3 nights.

Danjugan Island is managed by the Philippine Reef & Rainforest Conservation Foundation Inc., which works to preserve this piece of paradise – not for tourists – but for its original inhabitants and beneficiaries: the wildlife and the local residents who live off the bounty of the sea.

Danjugan Aerial Classic.JPG

Here, you’ll get access to rich surroundings for snorkeling with a variety of fish in a variety of underwater ecosystems, from coral reefs to mangroves to sea grass! When not at sea, you can also explore the island, go bird-watching or check out the bat cave.

Learn how to identify certain fish and coral species and be more comfortable in the water (if you aren’t a mermaid in your mind already). Engage with us in discussions on plastic pollution, climate change, and brain jam with us on how we can all make a difference. Share your your fears, your hopes, and your witty one-liners! We’re here to create a space with a balance of meaningful learning, quiet introspection, and joyful interaction. 🙂

This is not a luxury vacation. While we won’t go all out on the “roughing it”, seeking to provide travelers a level of comfort (with beds and proper bathrooms), it is our aim to show you that a simpler way of living can be a happy one. Group meals served will be simple – primarily plant-based but delicious and nourishing, and accommodations will be pretty but modest. Please note that mobile signal is limited in Danjugan, while insects, snakes and some dangerous marine animals may abound. It is their home we are visiting after all. We’ll be giving you guidelines to prepare for the trip, but your mindset and comfort level is only something you can work on. 🙂

This is not an immersion or voluntourism trip either. While a big part of what you pay goes back to these local communities, companies or organizations, you are not going on this trip to “save the poor people of the Philippine islands”. Instead, we’d like to give you this opportunity to learn more for yourself, and learn more about what they need, when you curiously ask questions and listen.

What this is, is an off-the-beaten path experience, balancing the traveler’s thirst to discover as much of the world as she can, with a luscious enough amount of languor to savor extended lunches and after-dinner conversations. Six days is longer than the most weekend-warrior trips, but a lot shorter than the weeks-long escapes that we prefer, so we’ll do our best. 🙂

You will be primarily plant-powered, the facilities primarily solar-powered, and the whole trip aims to be as fun, educational, and zero-waste (in all senses of the phrase) as possible.

Package is inclusive of:

  • BCD Airport transfers (pick up on March 9; drop off on March 14)
  • 6 DAYS & 5 NIGHTS accommodation (shared room);
    2 nights at Nature’s Village Resort in Talisay (near Bacolod), 3 nights at Danjugan Island (accommodations will be sustainably made, non-A/C mud huts with en suite bathrooms)
  • Land and sea transportation on all days
  • All meals included except dinner on Day 5
  • MUNI travel coordinator & guide
  • A MUNI Meetup in Bacolod, custom-made for you and your fellow travelers!
  • Organic farm visits with one of the proponents of organic farming in the region, Ramon Uy Jr. of Fresh Start Organic Farm, and with Ramon Peñalosa Jr. of Peñalosa Farms, an integrated farming model in Negros Occidental.
  • Danjugan island visit and activities including:
    • Boat tour, trekking & snorkeling guide, use of kayaks, snorkeling gear
    • Camp sessions / talks on fish identification, climate change, plastic pollution, and more led by Dave Albao, Executive Director of the Philippine Reef & Rainforest Conservation Foundation Inc.
    • MUNI sessions on Living A Waste-free Life, and Empathy & The Environment, led by Jen Horn, founder of MUNI
    • Conservation fees and accident insurance for Danjugan Island
  • Social enterprise workshop visit with Christina Gaston, founder of Hacienda Crafts, which uses traditional basket-weaving techniques with modern, world-class design (they’ve exhibited in Germany and won international awards!)
  • 2 tickets worth P500 each to join a MUNI Meetup in Manila, before and/or after your trip
  • Zero waste travel kit / personal care + travel-related products from mindful brands
  • More goodness and surprises!

Throughout the trip, we’ll have the powwows and informal discussions to uncover more about how you want to create impact in the world, where you are right now, where you want to go, how you can help yourself, and what support you can get from others during and after the trip.

LIMITED TO 10 SLOTS ONLY. A slot may be secured upon 50% non-refundable downpayment while slots last.

If you like what you’ve read so far and are interested to be part of this, you can apply to join the trip by filling out the MUNI Travels Application Form here on or before January 31, 2018. An Early Bird Discount of P2,000 applies to those whose applications came in on or before January 15, and completed downpayment by January 15 as well, so apply early! Please give us ~5 working days to review your application. Deadline of full payment is by February 9, 2018. More trip information and payment details will be sent upon review of your application.

Looking forward to traveling with you! 🙂