Monday, 20 April 2009
Survivor Caramoan (Day 2)
We woke up early for another day of adventure. From Paniman, our boat took us to Cotivas Islands in front is Guinohoan Island. On our way, we saw Bag-ing Island and more rock formation.
We then went to Manlawi Island also called Sandbar Island. We love it here because of the fine sand and we were in the middle of the sea but it's only knee deep. We stayed here for almost 3 hours because the boatman left us to look for fresh catch for our lunch. We took that opportunity to pose like FHM girls. Lia took great shots pang FHM talaga. Boats come and go but we remained in the island. I got my sunburn there but it's all worth it. We were laughing so hard when one tourist (let's call him Kuya Vest) who jumped off the boat with his life vest still on. Imagine the sandbar is only ankle deep. One of his companions from the other boat shouted at him to remove the vest but he remarked "bka magka-tidal wave" hahaha. We already started worrying because we were the only ones left and our boat was nowhere to be found. We were jumping when we saw kuya Flor but they didn't bring any fish for us. We ate Century Tuna instead at Basud (Part of Lahuy Island) where we met Kuya Vest and company. After eating, we pose again using the Survivor props as our background. Bakawan trees provided shade for us and this was also our relief station. We call this island our Pupu Island, so guess why we named it so, hehehe. Our boatman reminded us that we will go to Tabgon because the weather is great for climbing, it was not too hot and so off to our next adventure.
On our way to Tabgon Island, we can already see the Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and it looked like it's going to take hours before we reach the top. Our boatman said that natives can go with us as guide but since we didn't have money, we chose to do it on our own. We arrived at the foot of the Shrine of our Lady of Peace and just looking at the steps going up, we already felt tired. It took us 526 steps, lots of will and perseverance to see the spectacular view of Caramoan on top. We took one step at a time, taking a deep breath and enjoying the fresh air. Good thing, the weather cooperated with us, the scorching heat could have made our trip more difficult. We rested in between 100 steps, drink the water we brought and took pictures. The view from the halfway point was already awesome. It became more inspiring to finish when we already hear praise songs being played. When we reached the top, well almost, i could not move on to the Grotto which has a few more steps. Ivy and I just rested at the foot of the Grotto and took the time to pray and appreciate God's creation. We can see Caramoan islands from where we are. Amazing!
VIEW FROM HALFWAY POINT
AT LAST WE'RE ON TOP
Our Caramoan Survivor adventure has not ended, we headed back to Paniman Bay for our Umang Cave Trekking. On our way to the other end of Paniman, we met Survivor Israel staff and our guide Kuya Marlon showed us some of the venues where the Survivor challenges were being held. Too bad, we didn't have evidence we've been to these places because our cameras' batteries have worn off. Last picture we had for that day was before we sailed to the Manapot River near the entrance of Gota Village going to the mouth of Umang Cave.
Going to Umang Cave was one of our memorable challenges. Its entrance is about 30 feet above sea level so that meant hiking and braving the rocks again. I took all the guts to be able to finish this challenge. It was not as difficult as the trails in Matukad so we were able to climb in no time. We were speechless at the sight of the cathedral, comparable to what I've seen in St. Paul's Subterranean in Palawan, the difference is you need not ride a boat in an underground river to see such. The natural light coming in from the entrance showcases the stalactites and stalagmites. Awesome! It is cool inside, there are few bats and there's a certain smell that made us feel jittery. Going down was more challenging as I realized it was steep and when you look down, you'll think you fall off the mountain. At the foot of the entrance to the cave, there are more Survivor props. We can just imagine what the challengers did there.
The boat ride going back was now peaceful and we enjoyed talking to our boatmen who were paddling to reach our destination. We trek the stretch of Paniman Beach for new discoveries and our search for a filling but affordable dinner was a success. We found the by the bay resto near Tinago Inn and ordered fresh Adobong Pusit sa Gata, Pritong Maya-maya with the Bicol's fare Laing for our last supper in Caramoan. We were so full and tired that we hit the sack earlier. What a day!