Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Head Over Heels with Beautiful Calaguas

It was rather an impulsive thought due to our wanderlust hang-ups to make Calaguas our next destination after the CDO-Bukidnon-Camiguin trip.  Calaguas escapade is second to TBs many more travel adventures in the near (very near) future.

And so there we were, all packed up for a 3-nighter adventure to the remote Calaguas Island in Camarines Norte, Philippines.  Travel Buddies, minus James (so sad), Jen, Neil, Gerald, Meng, and myself eagerly shut down our PCs on Friday night and shifted from office to camping mode.  We left the office around 8PM and took a cab to Shell Magallanes where we met Grace, who flew all the way from Singapore to join us, and where the bus will pick us up.

The itinerary prepared by the tour organizer:

Day 0
08:00PM- Bus Station
08:30PM- ETD- Manila-Daet

 Day 1
 07:00AM - ETA Daet/ Breakfast
 08:00AM - ETD for Calaguas Island (tentative) or side trip macolabo island
 10:00AM - ETA Calaguas Island/ set camp explore
 12:00 NN- Lunch
 01:00PM - Siesta/ swimming/ explore/ picture happy campers
 06:00PM - Dinner
 07:00PM - Socials
 10:00PM - Lights out

 Day 2
 06:00AM - Wake up call
 07:00AM - Breakfast
 09:00AM - Break Camp
 10:00AM - ETD Calaguas - Daet
 12:00NN - ETD Daet
 01:00PM - Late Lunch
 02:00PM - Surfing Bagasbas 
 05:00 PM- Rest
 06:00 PM- Dinner 
 08:00 PM- ETD Daet-Manila              

We availed this Calaguas Hullaballoo Island Tour package that cost PHP3,000 per head.
It’s inclusive of:
  • Land and sea transfers
  • Tent accommodation at Calaguas Island
  • Full-board camp meals
  • Environmental fees
  • Free skim boarding lesson and use of skim board
Here’s their website for more info: melvicbrinas.com.


Our tents
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Grace's pasalubong from SG - cocktail chocolates
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com


It was 3PM when we got bored and finally decided to surrender ourselves to the rays of the sun (with so much sun block lotion) and enjoyed for the first time the waters of Calaguas.  We still could not believe how perfect the beach is.  It is truly the best we have ever seen.
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com



Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
We tried skim boarding, but Neil seemed to be the only one who really got the hang of it. It was much harder than I thought it would be. Surfing seems easier, and less dangerous.

Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Ge and I borrowed this kite from a local kid.  It was nostalgic to fly a kite again. My first time to do it in a beach.

Photo by Sherelle Perez
Came sunset and we just could not help but admire the view of it from the island. Climb the hill behind the island, and it will give you a bird’s eye view of the beach.

Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Photo by Gerald Habal
Taking a bath was a challenge.  As this is a virgin island, yet undeveloped (which I hope remains this way), there are no decent bathrooms.  They only have a very raw toilet made of hollow-blocks.  So we bathed by the poso with some other women.  Good thing it’s dark already.

After dinner, we prepared the much awaited kape melon.  A mix introduced by Jen and Meng that I was really excited about.  How? Just mix GSM Blue, 3-in-1 coffee (we had decaf), and Nestle Premium Dairy Melon (should be melon powdered juice but we could not find any).  We just loved this new mix discovery!  Even the kuya from the tour organizers loved it, and could not believe we just mixed it.

We gathered around one of the Boracay Rum lamps on the sand, and played word association while drinking (added shot of GSM Blue for penalty).

Lit Boracay Rum bottle as the centerpiece, so clever!
Photo by Sherelle Perez
BANGAG
We also celebrated Jen's birthday.
Photo by Sherelle Perez
This is how you do it.
The stars were so plenty I just wanted to lie on the sand and watch them and make constellations out of them.

We called it a night by 12AM, and slept in our tents, another first! (fourth)

I woke up around 5AM and our tent looked like it’s going to fall apart, the wind was ruthlessly shaking it.  And I saw Neil by the cottage, outside the tent, running after swimsuits being blown by the wind. I was just too sleepy to laugh, so I went back to sleep. Sleeping in the tent isn’t so bad, especially with my travel pillows. J  The uneven sand just made it difficult to make oursel comfortable as our blanket was not thick enough.

As I woke up: Open the tent, Ge! Good morning! Picture!
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
By 7AM we woke up and had breakfast and did more swimming and photo shoots. And then at 9AM we packed up and left the island.


My top 5 must-haves on this trip:
  • Flashlight
  • Inflatable travel pillows (the comfort you can’t buy)
  • Blanket and jacket (AC on bus overnight will kill you!)
  • Sunblock!!!
  • Mosquito repellant
Bagasbas Beach was the next destination – surfing time!
We were assigned to a room at Surfer’s Dine-Inn, together with another group, where we can keep our bags and take a shower.  After lunch, those who will surf gathered for a few minutes  of basic crash course on surfing.


Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Surf board rental costs PHP200 and surf instructor costs PHP200 as well – a total of PHP400 for one hour of surfing (lesson).  This was my second time to try surfing, first was at San Juan, La Union last year.  This time I had more bruises, rashes, wounds, and unbelievable muscle pain (not the most usual thing, it’s just me), but it was all worth it.

Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
We had dinner at 6PM, and left Bagasbas by 7PM.  We arrived Manila around 4AM, and went straight to KFC People Support to have breakfast.

During this trip, I had my first….
…overnight bus rides
…ride on that platform type of boat
... Pacific Ocean cross
… river-meets-the-ocean experience
…overnight camping
...kite flying in a beach
…worst body pain ever

Photo by Jen Cobarrubias
rovingshutterbug.blogspot.com
While other people were getting started with their normal office day, with a most contented heart we bid each other goodbyes as we went back to our homes (Grace to fly back to SG) to take the rest we need…and dream of the surreal piece of paradise we have just been to. ♥


See all TRAVEL posts.

7 comments:

  1. Blanket and jacket (AC on bus overnight will kill you! - I definitely agree!

    BTW, thanks for the plug on your photos :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Natatawa na lang kami ni Grace pag sinasabi niya na buti na lang dala ko yung blanket kundi namatay na kami. :D

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  3. how nice!! you wrote everything I wanted to write about this trip! hahahaha I'm sooooo in love with Calaguas! ^_^ I hope di sya masira.. :)

    <3 <3 <3

    ReplyDelete
  4. hahaha! and to think you gals were wearing shorts and flip-flops on the bus.
    a big check on bringing a blanket and jacket for the trip!

    another great blog nique! keep it up!
    can't wait for our next destination! :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. More trips and wonderful places to discover! :)

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  6. Wow Ganda! congrats po :)

    ReplyDelete

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xoxo, Monique

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