Wednesday, November 28, 2012

My Fan Page in Facebook =)

My Fan Page in Facebook

It contains pictures, blogs, videos and other useful information about the Philippines. Please visit and like the page. Thank you! =)

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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Island Garden City of Samal

from Dumaguete-City Hotel

The Island Garden City of Samal, an island situated within the coast of Davao Gulf, is one of the premiere tourist spots in the Philippines. It boasts of 118 kilometers of long continuous coastline, crystal clear waters and pristine white sandy beaches. The topography of the island is a combination of rocky heights, rolling hills, mangroves, gigantic coconut trees, waterfalls, beach coves, and variety of caves.  Samal Island has become a popular destination for foreign tourists and local visitors. The amenities offered in the island varies from a simple peace haven to extreme nature adventures. 

Cagayan De Oro
Summer 2012, from Cagayan De Oro, I took a plane to Davao City via Airphil. 

I spent 2 days in Cagayan De Oro enjoying the city and its number one attraction, white river rafting.

The plane was a bit expensive. I paid around P3,000. 

Originally, I was supposed to travel by land from Cagayan De Oro to Davao. But the hours of travel made me decide to take the plane instead.

After 45 minutes, I reached Davao City.

From the airport, I hurriedly flagged down a taxi and went to the port.

Samal Island's main port is at the town of Babak, a ten minute ferryboat from Sta. Ana Wharf, Davao City. Sta. Ana Wharf is about twenty minutes by taxi from Davao International Airport. 

Luckily, I ended up as the only passenger of the boat going to Paradise Island. The boat needed to go back to the island asap.

I paid only P20.00 for the single ride.

After ten minutes, I arrived at the port of Paradise Island.

Paradise Island

Contact Nos. (082) - 233-0251 / 234-1229
Mobile - 0920-954-6780

I ended up getting the premiere room since there were no more eco rooms.

I paid P3,500/day for the room.

Reaching my room, I know why I paid that much. Well, it is not actually a room. It's a house!

Spacious, cozy and top of the line accommodation was given to me.

Among the variety of amenities offered by Paradise Island, I opted to avail of the massage. 

I was tired and my back was aching.

I ended up enjoying the massage and got a 2 hour massage.

After the massage, I took my dinner and slept soundly.

Day 2

Paradise Island

I love going to a beach but I am not fond of swimming in the beach. The first thing I did that morning was to go to other side of Paradise Island and hire a land tour. I hired a habal-habal tour and paid 300/hour for the said tour. 

There are plenty of drivers offering their services to tour the outskirts of Samal Island.

First stop that day, the Monfort Bat Colony.

It is included in the Guinness World Records as containing the most number of fruit bats colony (approximately 1.8 million).    

I paid P150 for the tour (which included the fee for the guide).

There are three major chambers of the Monfort Bat Cave housing the millions of bats.

This is the biggest cave.

Next stop, we went to Pearl Farm. 

Pearl Farm Beach Resort is number one resort in Samal Island. You have to make advance reservation to get the accommodation. As a backpacker, I am not in the habit of making advance reservation and I ended up getting my accommodation at Paradise Island (the next best to Pearl Farm).

I took us almost thirty minutes before reaching the site.

Another boat ride to reach the island. 

The frontdesk was kind enough to allow me to tour the vicinity. I was not able to reach the island itself but reaching the jump-off point was good enough.

Then, we went back and proceeded to Hagimit Falls.

The road to the falls was not cemented and it was a bumpy ride.

Reaching the site, I paid P30.00 for the entrance fee.

My guide and I went down to the falls. The walk is ten-fifteen minutes only.

entrance of the resort
pathway to reach the falls

Hagimit Falls

After an hour, we decided to go back to Paradise Island. I took my lunch at the resort. 

If there is one thing I enjoyed in Paradise Island, it is the serenade while you are eating. You can request for any 60s or 70s song for only P20-30/song.

My mind was so preoccupied while I was taking lunch.

 I was thinking of my adventure in Davao City. Another White River Rafting in the making!

Another blog for this adventure. It deserves a separate one. 

Samal Island and the adventures in Davao City, an experience you should not miss!

Visit Samal Island!

Visit Davao!

It's More Fun in the Philippines! =)

Blue Jazz Beach Resort & Waterpark

Day Tour (6am - 5pm)
Entrance - P90.00 - Adult / P70.00 - Child / P30.00 Roundtrip Boat Fare

Overnight (5pm - 8am) 
Entrance - P220.00 - Adult/ P110.00 - Child / Roundtrip boat fare - P30.00

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Siargao: Surfing Capital of the Philippines

Surfing is one fastest growing sport in the Philippines today aside from scuba diving. 

And the best place to enjoy it is in Siargao!

from Popular Tourist Spots
Siargao Island is a tear-drop shaped island in the Philippine sea situated 800 kilometers southeast of Manila in the province of Surigao del Norte. It has a land area of approximately 437 square kilometers. The east coast is relatively straight with one deep inlet, Port Pilar. The coastline is marked by a succession of reefs, small points and white, sandy beaches (Wikepedia).

Tagged as the "Surfing Capital of the Philippines," Siargao ranks in the Philippines as one of the top ten best beaches in the Philippines.

I went to Siargao last March 2012 and my adventure was phenomenal!

Enchanted River
From Hinatuan, Agusan Del Sur (where I went to see the Enchanted River), I rode a bus to Surigao City.

The travel by land was good for 4 hours.

There are so many ways to go to Siargao. 

From Manila take a flight from either Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific Airlines or Zest Airways  direct to Siargao island  or take a flight via Philippine Airlines or AirPhil from Manila to Surigao City.

Another way of going to Surigao is by land travel using Philtranco from Manila and by sea thru 2GO travel from Port of Manila.

Anyway, I came from Agusan Del Sur, and I opted to use travel by land. I was on my 8th day of travel in Mindanao. Enjoying the summer in Mindanao.

I arrived late in Surigao City. I had to spent the night in the city since there where no more available means of transportation to Siargao.

The following morning, I woke up 5 am and proceeded to "Pantalan" (pier) where my ride to Siargao was located.

There are two ports in Surigao. Make sure you are in Pantalan.

Good thing I woke up early that day, the first trip to Dapa was slated 6 am.

And this is the ferry boat ride to Dapa, Siargao.

The golden sunrise was so beautiful that day! 

A perfect day to go to Siargao!

From the port to Dapa, Siargao, the boat ride was 4 hours. I marveled at the sight of the seas and enjoyed my ride.

After 4 hours, we reached the port of Dapa. And I hurriedly went to the nearest canteen where I took my late breakfast. It was already past ten am.

The best place in Siargao is Gen. Luna.

After my late breakfast, I hired a habal-habal to my destination. I paid P150.00 for the ride. Along the way, I was talking to the driver and asked him the best spot where I could spend the night in Siargao. 

He answered, "Cloud Nine."

Along the way, we passed another port.

And I felt that I was about to have a good time in Siargao!

After 45 minutes, we reached the spot. The resort is Ocean 101, Cloud Nine. The best thing about Ocean 101 was that it accepts credit card payment.


I did not have any second thoughts about my accommodation that day even though I had to pay P2, 500/day for my stay. 

The place was very cozy, relaxing and refreshing. 

I placed my stuff inside the room and trekked the beach of Siargao.

This is the collection of surfing boards of the owner of Cloud Nine Resort.

While walking, I saw so many people surfing in the beach. The wave was strong, ideal for surfing!

I may not know how to surf. But watching them surf gave me a good time to behold.

People of all ages enjoy surfing in Siargao. You can see so many people carrying their surfing boards towards the beach.

They were so busy enjoying the waves and preparing their surfing boards!

I stayed in the beach and watched the surfers do their stuff.

After one hour, I decided to go to other side of Cloud Nine. I passed the Boardwalk of Cloud Nine. This one of the spots in Siargao that you do not want to miss seeing.

Aerial view of the Boardwalk 
The main building
After my trek, I decided to have a massage. I paid P400/hour for the massage. After the massage, I took early dinner and slept soundly that night.
Day 2

The following morning, I checked out of the hotel. I did my island hopping adventure in Siargao. I paid P4,000 for the said tour. I had nobody to share it with and I paid in full. Normally, it is around 2,500 only but I had to go back to Surigao City and passed Bucas Grande Island and that is the reason why I had to pay that much. I brought my own snack for the trip. As a tip, never hire the boat thru the resort. It is a bit more expensive because of the commission.
This was my ride for the island hopping. Last stop of the tour was the Bucas Grande Island. There were three islands that we had to visit that day, namely - Dako, Guyam and Naked.

First stop, Guyam Island
Guyam Island - cute and rocky island
Going to the next island
Dako Island - the biggest among the three

There are many coconuts in this island

Only Dako island is the inhabited island.

Last stop, Naked Island

Naked island is a small, barren, white sand island just like Camiguin's White Island. But it contains small patches of grass in some areas.

Island hopping is best enjoyed during summer. I do not recommend doing it in during rainy season where the waves are fierce and stronger.

Then after the three islands, we went to Bucas Grande Island.

Bucas Grande Island is no longer part of Siargao. So I think it's better if I will make another blog for that spot. Another beautiful place in Surigao!
Starting point of the tour 
Inside Bucas Grande Island - Sohoton Cove

I had fun in Siargao. It's really more fun in the Philippines!! =)

Camiguin -
Guimaras -