Life is the sum of experiences that we encounter as go through life. Day to day to struggles and triumphs are experienced by all of the world's creatures. As human beings, when we encounter a challenge, we have freedom to choose how to react. Every decision that we make leads us down another road. We will never come to exactly the same crossroads. Every decision the we make has significance. The tiniest choice that is made reverberates throughout the entire universe.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Day 2 - Coron, Palawan

As early as 4am, gising na ko. Probably because even in my dreams, my crush visited me, in Palawan pa ha..hehe. Pero syempre excited din ako sa araw na ito! This is it, the ultimate island tour I've been wishing for.

Around 8:00AM after an overloaded breakfast in Village Lodge, we met Kuya Jhun at the market to buy food for our second day island tour. While he and papa were at the market, we took pictures of the view.

Lualhati Park is equipped of tile paving, benches, gazebos, and various plants right in front of the Coron Bay. A literally simple park.

The view is so refreshing and windy. 

Lualhati Park is close to Coron's Public Market, Coron Gateway Hotel, public transportation terminal and tourism office.

We''re heading on our first stop - MALCAPUYA ISLAND

We left the town at exactly 8:30am.  This is our second/ last island tour.  So gusto namin sulitin! Before leaving, an old man and the care-taker of Siete Pecados joined us on our 1.5 hours boating, marami siyang baong experiences that he shared to us expecially to papa. Siya lang naman ang nagparami ng mga fishes sa Siete Pecados!!  And now, kinuha na siya ng Malcapuya to manage the island also. GALING! With his magic hands napaparami niya at naalagaan ng husto ang mga corals and fishes.
Going Malcapuya Island is farther compared to our FIRST DAY which we only traveled by a less than 30 minutes.

About 30 kilometers south of the Coron Poblacion and east of Culion Island is a sub-cluster of islands that includes Malcapuya Island, Dicalabuan Island, and Bulalacao Island.

It is said that Malcapuya is virgin island and very much looked like BORACAY because of its fine white sand.  But since I haven't gone to Boracay yet and knowing it is already over crowded especially on weekends and holidays, I definitely keep my two thumbs up at Malcapuya Island! 

Malcapuya is a good spot for snorkeling. It is a slice of paradise found only in Coron, Palawan. 
Finally, the island came in sight

Time Check: 10am eksaktong eksakto. Galing!
A long stretch of Malcapuya

We put our things at the cottage near the assigned cooking area. Kuya Jhun and Eman started preparing foods. Hindi na namin pinalagpas ang pagkakataon, we immediately change our clothes and splurged at the inviting white fine beach of Malcapuya!
Kahit saan ka pumunta, ma- iinlove ka sa lugar!

It was indeed, a perfect getaway for our family.  I still cannot compare it to other resorts and even beach that I've been to ^^

Mama and Papa cannot resist to strike a pose in a hut located at the right side of an island. By the way, nice shots Mavic!

Papa took the SLR and click it, capturing every inch of a beauty in front of him!!!!!!!
I haven't much noticed these beach flags pictures at the net

Akala nyo deluxe room lang ang meron, syempre my deluxed lunch din! (We also have pork chopped during lunch)

After making ourselves full, we went to the upper left side of the island where you can have a perfect view from the cliff.

While taking gorgeous photos, we spotted dark clouds at the background (Banana Island).  There's something sinister to our vacation huh! Take a look at the picture, you see the white, foggy thing at the background,  Yes, That is rain! It's already raining on that part, eh that's our second destination pa naman. huhuhu..

Banana Island - our 2nd stop was bombarded by heavy rains

We go back to our cottage when the rain started pouring us. But the rain did not stay that long so we still able to savor this very moment! 
Our second destination for the day was just 15minutes sailing from Malcapuya.  The Dicalabuan Island or more popularly known as Banana Island. 

Actually, we have five lined up itinerary for today but due to the weather condition, we all agreed not to pursue Bulog Dos and Malaroyroy Island. Even prior going to Banana Island, we had a discussion with papa whether to go or not.

Ayaw na ni papa kase umuulan nga daw. He said that it might be risky to go with it because of the waves that we were going thru, although I also have the "nerve- cracking" thoughts at the back of my mind, I still asked Kuya Jhun if it is still safe since the rain has subside already and he said it is....!So, we insist!

Ayaw pa nung una pumunta eh, sight seeing naman siya, peace papa :)
Time Check: 2PM
Since Banana Island is too close to Malcapuya, it has almost the same features. White fine sand, Crystal clear/ turquoise water but shorter version. Just like Malcapuya, it has cottage and hammock.

The Island Bench

Nagulat ako when I see the place. There were about 3 to 5 small houses in the island.  None of them I've seen at the net though.  

Kuya Jhun guided me to the island owner so I could pay the entrance fee. From what I read, there is a couple who fortunately owned the island. Swerte ha! Sana ako din someday..(wink)!
Hehe, another incorrectly written signboard!

I just noticed now.  I suddenly get curious. Bigla tuloy ako nag Google search for the right spelling ng "SNORKELING" Maybe, in our family ako lang naka noticed nito. Lol!
White sand
On our way, I asked Kuya Jhun, why is it named "Banana Island".  As expected, he told us that the island is shaped like a banana. aok.

Shots by Dicapac
There were also plenty of fishes here. Dito kami nagtagal, uber snorkeling and bumming!

GOD is really good! Rain stopped!

Endless Bonding!
Regret was the term when I realized that there's no way anymore to go with Bulog Dos and Malaroyroy but Banana Island was enough for us to fulfill our dream vacation.
The snorkeling around Banana Island is excellent experience with its abundant marine life to explore within, parang Siete Pecados!

You can enjoy different activities around the island

A beautiful secluded place yet relaxing

Our satisfied faces with Kuya Jhun and Eman, eh sinu ung nasa likod? hmmn, who the hell are you!? hehe
We left the island at 3:30PM.
Upon sailing, there were harsh waves which seldom hit our boat.  Mas malakas kesa nung papunta kami sa island. At 5:00pm, we were safe landed at the town once again and decided to go straight to Maquinit Hot Spring to have some relaxation.

It is really HOT!

We rent a tricycle to get through to Maquinit. Hindi pala pede ang hindi mag rent, kase malayo at liblib ang lugar within 10-15mins from the town. This is suitable to ate, mama and papa para makapag relax, parang nakapag massage na kaming lahat diba and it is used to be sort of therapy na rin over the years in Coron.  

So, prepare to dip up to 40 degree temperature hot spring. 

Clue: You have to dip gradually to the hot water. I'm telling you, it was HOT! You can dip first your feet until your body can thoroughly adapt the hot water. Parang lalapnusin ako nung una. Eh as per Ate Diane, I have to try this because in Wensha Spa it is alot hotter. Ganon?! May mas mainit pa dito?

Maquinit hot spring na maraming lumot. hehe
We asked the tricycle driver why Coron has hot spring, why it is salty and where the water comes in. He said that the salty water is coming from the nearby volcano. It is said that it is from the underground volcano that is why it's hot.  Salty because the water is mixed with the ocean water.

At 6:30PM, we're back on the lodge and went to Kawayanan Grill to indulge for dinner at the town.
Let's call it another superb day! 

Day 2 - Actual Expenses

Per group
per pax
Boat Rental
Snorkeling gear (2) for whole day
Entrance Fees
Malcapuya Island + Cottage
Banana Island
Maquinit Hot Spring
Tricycle - Back and forth

Please click to view our day 1
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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Day 1 - Coron Family Vacation

Snippet of Coron

I woke up at 4:15am, we should be leaving at around 5:30.  It was the start of classes so we need to go ahead on time. We cannot afford to be late on our first ever family vacation via plane. hehe..

We took a cab, at exactly 6:15am nasa NAIA na kami. Si manong taxi driver kase, dami wento at grievances, alam lahat ata ng history ng Pilipinas, pero ang bilis niya mag drive di ba! 45mins lang from Valenzuela to airport! Whew, that was fast, indeed!

Going on board @ Cebu Pa
1 hour delayed ang flight. I started to worry, because we might cannot do all the supposedly itinerary on the first day.
Instead of 10:20, we arrived at Busuanga Airport past 11am.
Ma, we did it! (kabado kasi kami sa unang flight namin) Hahahaha..Welcome! Coron, PALAWAN!!
I immediately looked for Kuya Joy, he was referred by Kuya Jhong na maging driver namin. (Sorry po, we're late.) Sanay na daw sila sa mga ganung eksena. After 30mins, we reached the Coron Town Proper. On the way, makikita mo agad ang kagandahan ng Palawan. Puro bundok at puno. Hmm..refreshing! As planned, we had a quick check- in to Coron village lodge then gora na ulit kami sa van to fulfill the DAY 1 island tour!

Kuya Jhong mentioned that he cannot go with us so he referred Kuya Jhun (bayaw niya) our official boatman for 2 days. 
After 15mins boating, we stop in the middle of the vast ocean. Sabi ko tuloy kay Kuya Jhun, "dito na po un? anu po meron dito?" and he said, "Opo mam, Siete Pecados po".  Hahahaha. aok.

Medjo disappointed ako nung una, kc that's already past lunch time and based on the itinerary, Banul Beach muna kami for lunch, I thought gutom na sina ma at pa.  Eh I cannot make any complains na, andun na kami eh. So, I wore my goggles for snorkeling and first dip into the water, napa W.O.W! talaga ako pag ahon! As in! I was mesmerized by the rich and colorful coral reefs I've seen at ang DAMING FISH!!! It was beautiful!

Siete Pecados - monitoring station
Ay grabe talaga, spell A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!
We love feeding fish

We were prepared, we brought bread pero we were surprised when we started feeding them, nagpuntahan silang lahat sa amin especially to ate.  Kaso ung itim, nangangagat daw. Hahaha..(Takaw).
Take note: Salty Water! 
Must- Haves: Bread, Goggles and UNDERWATER Cam. 
Ate bought Dicapac for us! Very good! Sayang talaga pag wala ka.

Photos by EMAN, Kuya Jhun's assistant!

Then I realized, the one I handed to Kuya Jhun na itinerary was the original one. I have a revised one na kase. So, okay na rin un. Okay talaga ang first stop, ang maki bonding sa mga fish at corals. It was past 2PM when we reached the next stop, the KAYANGAN LAKE, known to be the cleanest lake in Asia.

We ate lunch here. Green ang tubig, malinaw! Kaso..
Take Note: Malamok!
Must - Haves: Mosquito repellant!
Our boatman prepared something unresisting sumptuous meal. The family enjoyed the lunch, while spraying to the max ng repellant. Hehehe..

Ensaladang Itlog, Seaweeds, Crabs, Fish for Lunch and etc.

After lunch, we started climbing according to Kuya Jhun, a less than 100 (two way) steps before reaching the Kayangan Lake.

Truly, a breathtaking view!

We do have images that only lens can capture!

We started swimming, the water was pretty deep approximately 10- 20 meters deep. When you're at the lake, the only thing you could do is enjoy the fresh water and the scenery. Pede atang inumin ang tubig dito, sa sobrang linis?! lol.

All you can see is the crystal clear water, rock formations and how it mirrors everything on the lake!!!!

We stayed one hour wallowing in the lake.  Mama, enjoyed here and blurted, "pupunta uli tayo dito bukas"?
Hehe, it seemed Mama really enjoyed swimming here ha! :) and so we all did.


Limestones Cliffs at Barracuda

After 5mins boating, we were once again welcomed by the majestic ROCK FORMATIONS, signed that we are almost on our third stop, the Barracuda Lake.

Based on what I've read, Barracuda skeleton found here that's why it's being called, " BARRACUDA LAKE". Ang Sabi ko dati, hindi kami lulusong dito if we are the only people here, good thing marami kami that time so I grabbed my snorkeling gear and dip into the freshwater again! This time hindi ako na pa WOW sa ganda, I was startled by what I see under! I almost freaked out when I dip into the water, kase and dilim!!! Katakot pala, parang any moment, may hihila sayo sa ilalim.

Water Visibility: 35- 40 meters deep. Dark/  murky.
Positive: Perfect site for divers
Must Haves: Life vest! Wear it always, if you are not a good swimmer.

But still, Barracuda did not stop to amaze us. With its non-stop rock formation and beckoning blue- green clear water, picture taking and swimming in 30 minutes was not enough. 

It may sounds creepy like an old saying that Barracuda could still lives here, but definitely, one that cannot be missed when you visit Coron!

 Next stop, twin Lagoon.

No pictures taken inside the twin Lagoon.
Kuya Jhun told us that we cannot bring our SLR inside and there's no way to put it anyway, at least we can bring Dicapac with us. 

Papa get in first pero bumalik din siya agad kase he felt something in his underarm.  He exclaimed that his underarm was aching. 
When Mama, Mavic and I followed, we felt something is itchy. It's like something was biting our back. Haha, ang kati talaga.  

Shots from Dicapac

When the three of us reached the other side of  the lagoon, at the back I heard Ate Diane shouted, "Kuya tulungan mo ko, kuya..tulungan mo ko." I was hurriedly go back to check what happened to her. Kanina daw may na i- spot- ang jellyfish ang mga tao doon. Ah, e asan na sabi ko?

"Wala na, pinatay ko na" Eman proudly said to us. 
"Oh, pinatay mo na, ang bilis ah!" Sabi ko. Nabigla ko kase di namin nakita. Ang bangis talaga ni Eman. So un, thank God, that's good to hear pero ang kati talaga. Papa encouraged us to go back instead kase there's nothing you can hold on to or something that you could able to walk- through pag kaylanga mo, as in wala kang kakapitan so we immediately went back to our boat and sped off to our last stop.

I wondered how big yung pinatay ni Eman na Jellyfish kase nangati kaming lahat! But the most affected nang kati ay si Papa.  Papa shown to us his underarm. Ay, grabe namantal.  It swollen already;  formed a circular small bites. tsk..tsk..

Entrance to pristine "Banul Beach"
Enjoy!! White Sand! YUHOOO!
Banul has fine white sand beach. We've seen fishes also here, good for snorkeling.
Can't just get enough of the nice picturesque of the beach
"Proper DESPOSAL" was incorrectly written at their signage. Which only means, be socially RESPONSIBLE!
Show your etiquette people. Do not leave your trash anywhere.
Coron's Sunset @ Banul Beach

What a wonderful day! Loads of swimming, snorkeling and eating!  
Eating to the max after so much fun in water in four stops!

On our way back to Village Lodge, time for dinner!

Day 1 - Actual Expenses

Per group
per pax
Boat Rental
Snorkeling gear (2) for whole day
Entrance Fees
Siete Pecados
Kayangan Lake
Banul Beach

Originally, the entrance fee to Siete Pecados is P100 each. But since the caretaker was dreaming that time when we're about to leave and pay, Kuya Jhun gave us discount na lang so that's make us P300 only. Thanks Kuya Jhun! 

To view, please click our day 2!
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