A Travellerspoint blog

Crazy over Camiguin

and a little of Cagayan de Oro

rain 22 °C

La Nina in January will not stop me from exploring...and this time it got me to that part of the Philippines I haven't been to – Mindanao!!! Yey, now I can say I have been to Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao!!!

After a plane ride, 10 minutes of taxi haggling, 2 hours of road trip along the Northern Mindanao stretch, and 3 hours of ferry ride (should have been an hour if not for the very challenging weather)we have reached Camiguin.


Behind the motorcycle driver, with rain drops trickling down my face, me and my friends went off to the Giant Clams sanctuary... amidst the gloomy weather, the sea still reflects it beautiful blue hue, clear white sands and the sound of the crashing waves on the shore...pure indulgence to the eyes, if I may say. The road to the sanctuary isn’t that accommodating, sloping, meandering and bumps along the way but the sight was worth the pain.

Next, we went on to the main itinerary which is the tour of the island... again, rain drops kept falling on our heads but well, what’s a little "runny nose" trip by-product?


First stop, Katibawasan Falls... and no, there’s no trekking required for this one. A few meters walk from the entrance is the site itself; and though it was cold, we can’t help but plunge into the welcoming waters...I can say that this is one of my favourite falls.


Then, we went on to the Sunken Cemetery... brought about by the catastrophic volcanic eruption ages ago, the whole cemetery was submerged and now part of the sea. A marker though was built on top of one of the highest point. It was eerie to try and look below the calm water because again it used to be a cemetery and I don’t think anyone would want to swim in there.


After, we went on to visit the old church ruins and the station of the cross, both offer solace for reflection in their own way.

The last stop for the day, Ardent Hot Springs where we had such a sumptuous dinner, something we never expected...and a late night dip into the hot springs to calm our already tired muscles...thanks to old age. The day trip not only brought us to the various hot spots, but made us appreciate the quaint towns of Camiguin... living in simplicity and some nooks and crannies bring about the image of "colonial" Philippines... truly magnificent to say the least.

We stayed at one of the lesser known resorts, but I can definitely say that it is one of the biggest and cleanest I’ve been to and the owner is very accommodating and hands on... They even arranged for our boat trip to the White Island.

Camiguin308.jpg Camiguin118.jpg

The next day is White Island Day, though the sun is a little shy, we enjoyed our beach bummin’ activities... only 5 minutes away from the main land, this sand bar is a good place to relax, because there aren’t that many people, the long stretch would provide your own secluded place. If only we could stay longer... they also offer Sea Urchin to snack on for just P10 a piece... now, that’s bizarre foods in the making!

Though we would want to stay longer, we have to move on and catch our ferry home, otherwise we will be stranded because of the typhoon threats in the area, so off we go to Vjandep to get our Camiguin pastel and the truly delicious baked siopao...yes you read that right, not steamed, not fried, but baked. Again something that caught me off-guard because I can’t help but grab another to go.

The trip back to CDO was fairly short, and again thanks to the helpful locals, we were able to grab a taxi away from the terminal, where we wouldn’t have to haggle. Since it was our last night in Mindanao, we decided to splurge on food and so off we go to one of trendiest restaurants in Limketkai.


Going back to Manila, I can definitely claim that my first ever Mindanao trip, even with the typhoon threat and gloomy skies, was one of my best DIY activity ever.

Posted by Peachwanders 01:34 Archived in Philippines Tagged beach travel Comments (0)

Sea Gypsies

A closer look of the peninsula throught Art

overcast 24 °C

Stop 3: Zamboanga

==Fort Pilar and Zamboanga National Museum==


Posted by Peachwanders 10:34 Archived in Philippines Tagged history travel museum Comments (0)

Zippin' my way to Zamboanga

Eat. Explore. and Eat some more

sunny 22 °C

After a month, Mindanao here I am again!!!

This time it's Zamboanga (yup, you read that right)... Whenever we hear Zamboanga we immediately say, oh where the terrorists thrives, daily bombings and killings are normal, and all those nasty things...but generally, Zamboanga is a safe place to visit.


With a barrage of negative things attributed to the city, there is that tendency to overlook the good and beautiful culture enveloped in its broken image. Hence, amidst the threat and several advice, I was able to pursuade my sister to tag me along one of her visits to the city.

Spending 3 days in the city is more than enough to capture the richness of their culture. From the colonial architecture in the "pueblo," to the off-beat private mountain haven that overlooks the "latin city in asia." In addition to the foreign influence, as brought about by the colonization, indigenous tribes also contribute to the city's history - there's the Yakan weavers of Basilan, the Badjao or the "sea gypsies" and of course, for those who is brushing up on their alpabetong Filipino, V is for vintas or "sails" so colorful they brighten up the open seas.


I heard from one travel show that history and culture isn't just about seeing the places, but also experiencing the culinary craftsmanship, and that is what I just did. I savoured the sumptuous piece of heaven, curacha con Alavar. Rich in fresh seafood, Zamboanga is a haven for
seafood lovers - "when in Rome, eat what the Romans eat," and so I have; not particularly keen in eating foods that are "unknown" to my palate, I engaged in eating clams and Abalone - and actually enjoyed every single spoonful of it. Yes, Zamboanga brought me to bizarre gastronomic delights.

It doesn't end there though, I also tried the infamous Speedy Pizza, which is their unique take on pizza topped with fresh peaches. Then there is the buco pie with meringue-like topping; and finally, my favorite indulgence of them all, the nickerbacker - their version of
halo-halo sans the shaved ice!!!


Touring this part of the 7,107 islands isn't a disappointment at all, but I wish I was able to see the heavenly white and pink sand beaches surrounding the peninsula.

Posted by Peachwanders 17:00 Archived in Philippines Tagged food streets church Comments (0)

A Lazy Day

R&R at Moonbay Marina, Subic

sunny 23 °C

After an adventure filled day, we opted to spend the rest of our mini-vacay at Moonbay Marina for R&R.


Posted by Peachwanders 17:00 Archived in Philippines Tagged beach travel r&r Comments (0)

Roaring with the Tigers

Zoobic Safari Experience

sunny 23 °C

My son have always been fascinated by the wonders of the Animal Kingdom and one way for him to experience the animals "up close and personal" would be through the Zoobic Safari Adventure... From the smallest Guinea Pigs and other rodents to the birds and wild pigs, an appreciation of nature is inevitable.


In addition, one will be entertained by the tribal dances of the natives who inhabit the Ilanin Forest. The culminating activity would be an encounter with the tigers, where one can really be "face to face" with them while they devour the chicken meat.

A fun experience for the kids and kids at heart alike...

Posted by Peachwanders 17:00 Archived in Philippines Tagged zoo safari weekend trip Comments (0)

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