Beach bumming at Cagbalete

I was almost sure of not coming to Cagbalete that weekend. I haven’t had enough sleep and I was a bit off that week, so I could have said no; but eventually decided against it due to “friend” duties and the need to fulfill my “word of honor.”

We left Manila by midnight and arrived at Mauban, Quezon at around four in the morning. The long drive was already a mini-adventure because our very nice driver was having problems with directions, particularly with crossroads. Haha. It took as about eight to ten stops just to know we’re going into the right way. I slept through majority of those stops. Haha.

When the sun was brightly shining its six o’clock rays, we stepped out of our car and headed to the nearby wet market to buy goods. We have to cook our own lunch at the island because the blogs/guides we referred to said there’s not much food there. Our driver, who also happened to know how to cook, led our market tour—liempo, soy sauce and peppercorns for our adobo, a bag of eggplants, eggs and tomatoes for a good breakfast omelet, and rice. Very well then, we’re set.

Kids from the island eager to meet their visitors.
We had to wait for our other companion until eight before we set off to Mauban Port. Fast forward to ten o’clock. We’re boarding the boat, crammed with other backpackers setting off to Cagbalete. Nice. After 40 minutes, we saw a white strip of beach jutting out of the island—wow, this really should be good. We have to board a smaller boat—a bangka—to get to the shore. Standing inside the small boat; we’re about 10-15. Hahaha. Very Filipino, eh. Hahaha.

After landing, the choice was either to trek the small forest within the island to get to Nilandingan Cove or ride another motorboat. Because the sun was sweltering hot and we don’t have enough energy to walk, the boat was the likely choice. Thirty minutes. Whiter sand and crystal-clear waters. Relatively isolated part of the island. Wow. Just perfect. :D

Welcome drinks! :)
We spent the rest of the day frolicking in the beach, playing Frisbee and taking photos. Before the sun set, the waters receded to just ankle-deep and we’re able to reach the Vanishing Tree. Double wow. Our feet suffered from walking in the water. Apparently, it wasn’t all sand and seaweeds; the place was filled with coral reefs and mangroves before local fishermen used dynamite-fishing. The corals died since then, and our feet felt their death.

It was only seven in the evening but the sky’s pitch black. The only light we had were the small light bulbs that dot the whole area. The island relies on a generator for electricity, so supply’s available only from 6PM to 6AM. No problem. The bonfire we made at the beach provided the needed light and warmth for the whole company. With a bottle of beer and a good round of stories from everyone, the night was indeed well-spent.

The next day, the sky was filled with varied shades of blue, violet, yellow and orange—the sun’s already rising in the east. A hearty breakfast and a few more frolics and jump shots by the beach before finally packing our bags to leave.

Sunrise. :)

We walked the length of the other side of the beach to get to the boat that will bring us to Mauban again. It was a good weekend. The trip did not disappoint. #happy

More photos at Flickr and this photoblog.

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felix felicis: Beach bumming at Cagbalete

Monday, May 19, 2014

Beach bumming at Cagbalete

I was almost sure of not coming to Cagbalete that weekend. I haven’t had enough sleep and I was a bit off that week, so I could have said no; but eventually decided against it due to “friend” duties and the need to fulfill my “word of honor.”

We left Manila by midnight and arrived at Mauban, Quezon at around four in the morning. The long drive was already a mini-adventure because our very nice driver was having problems with directions, particularly with crossroads. Haha. It took as about eight to ten stops just to know we’re going into the right way. I slept through majority of those stops. Haha.

When the sun was brightly shining its six o’clock rays, we stepped out of our car and headed to the nearby wet market to buy goods. We have to cook our own lunch at the island because the blogs/guides we referred to said there’s not much food there. Our driver, who also happened to know how to cook, led our market tour—liempo, soy sauce and peppercorns for our adobo, a bag of eggplants, eggs and tomatoes for a good breakfast omelet, and rice. Very well then, we’re set.

Kids from the island eager to meet their visitors.
We had to wait for our other companion until eight before we set off to Mauban Port. Fast forward to ten o’clock. We’re boarding the boat, crammed with other backpackers setting off to Cagbalete. Nice. After 40 minutes, we saw a white strip of beach jutting out of the island—wow, this really should be good. We have to board a smaller boat—a bangka—to get to the shore. Standing inside the small boat; we’re about 10-15. Hahaha. Very Filipino, eh. Hahaha.

After landing, the choice was either to trek the small forest within the island to get to Nilandingan Cove or ride another motorboat. Because the sun was sweltering hot and we don’t have enough energy to walk, the boat was the likely choice. Thirty minutes. Whiter sand and crystal-clear waters. Relatively isolated part of the island. Wow. Just perfect. :D

Welcome drinks! :)
We spent the rest of the day frolicking in the beach, playing Frisbee and taking photos. Before the sun set, the waters receded to just ankle-deep and we’re able to reach the Vanishing Tree. Double wow. Our feet suffered from walking in the water. Apparently, it wasn’t all sand and seaweeds; the place was filled with coral reefs and mangroves before local fishermen used dynamite-fishing. The corals died since then, and our feet felt their death.

It was only seven in the evening but the sky’s pitch black. The only light we had were the small light bulbs that dot the whole area. The island relies on a generator for electricity, so supply’s available only from 6PM to 6AM. No problem. The bonfire we made at the beach provided the needed light and warmth for the whole company. With a bottle of beer and a good round of stories from everyone, the night was indeed well-spent.

The next day, the sky was filled with varied shades of blue, violet, yellow and orange—the sun’s already rising in the east. A hearty breakfast and a few more frolics and jump shots by the beach before finally packing our bags to leave.

Sunrise. :)

We walked the length of the other side of the beach to get to the boat that will bring us to Mauban again. It was a good weekend. The trip did not disappoint. #happy

More photos at Flickr and this photoblog.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

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