Wednesday, June 30, 2010

maculabo island

if the view from the boat to the island is remarkable the view from the village to the shoreline is intimate. it is a spot where one realizes that the absolute escape for one to do is simply to do nothing.the colors blue, white and green radiates the islands of our archipelago. years back, we were only looking at Boracay, Palawan and Cebu when it comes to great beaches. but the time has come for Bicol to prove its grandeur in having the country's best beaches.one good stop is an island far Southwest of Calaguas and North of Paracale, the island of Maculabo. a long knife-like island with a nice beach strip that's about less than an hour trip from Paracale or Calaguas.the island holds a small fishing village hidden from the coconut trees. something unusual for an island dock site, where one can immediately see the nipa houses. here they are nestled by these trees.i was amazed when i saw this beautiful hidden village. you'll see thatched houses with walls made up of dried coconut leaves. just imagine how great a summer experience be in an island like this.for someone who grew up in an island, the wooden motored boats remains a favorite subject. a number of these lined up along the fine cream-colored fine sand beach makes an even great sight.we almost missed out dropping by this island on our way back to Paracale because of the strong winds during that day. but the boat man managed to bring us there since the waves was relatively fair. a great stop!
coming up... the reasons why i love Calaguas. a last look at the Calaguas series.

Monday, June 28, 2010

pinagcastillohan island calaguas

it came to the point that we have to leave Tinaga island of Calaguas and it has never been easy to leave a place that you loved. the only beach that ive been to twice in just a month. this is Camarines Norte's gem.the first time i left this island, i ended up kissing the sand. a thing i've never done to any of the beach that ive been to before. and the sparkling clear waters in Mahabang Buhangin beach is something every visitor will never forget.but you cannot end your visit in Calaguas without dropping by the other islands. with this batch, i chose to bring the group to Pinagcastillohan island which i saw from a satellite view showing a long stretch of cyan-colored sea shore.a short 15-minute ride Southeast of Tinaga island leads to more scenic views of Calaguas' island hills. expect to see other less explored beautiful shorelines and beaches while hopping from one island to another.when we reached the other side, the long stretch white sand beach can be seen even from afar. it is here where one can find an extremely wide hip-deep beach area during low tide, where the big boats can hardly dock.since the island is already private, we just jumped from boat and had the whole area just for the our group. it is actually one of my favorite water pool-type beach of Calaguas. but beware of those sea grass areas where most sea urchins can be found. so kayaking is a great option.this is not a usual stop because the area is already private but we were fortunate enough to have the chance to drop by on a really nice weather. so don't be surprised if within this year, you'll find me visiting these islands again.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

mangkawayan village calaguas

passing by their houses, you'll see them lean and give a curious look. and when they see your camera, they smile. that's when you start taking a shot behind the camera lens smiling.
the people, the slow paced lifestyle, the fresh catch, the fishing boats, the gardens. just some of the things that makes a fishing village so appealing to me. a simple lifestyle at its best.
Mangakawayan village, Calaguas group's largest coastal village, is beautiful in the aspect of houses with well spaced lots. separated by wooden fences and small ornamental gardens.here, visitors go for cold drinks and something to munch. from Mahabang Buhangin beach, it is about 20-30minute walk to this village. expect no shade along the way but a path to follow.as of our visit, electricity is only available at night. so expect a jam packed videoke house. this reminds me of my experience of Sibuyan island in Romblon years back, where a large television with seats is called a movie house.
seeing fishing nets and crab cages reminds me again that i should even once in my life, experience fishing with the locals. but with limited time, i'll skip the chance again but it won't be far from happening. i just love the island life.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

trekking tinago hills - calaguas

it's not unusual for me to wake up as early as 4:30am when i'm traveling. there's just two reasons why. one to see the beautiful sunrise and two to see the locals doing their usual early morning routine. during my first trip in the island, i opened the idea to the group of them joining me to climb a hill and capture the early morning rays. quite a surprise that five out of seven made a yes.it was so dark that we can't find a way up the hill that i wanted to climb. we had to change our route moving towards the village. from there, one local who was up that early showed us a way up to another hill.this time there's a path up which made us pursue even more. but as we were going up one hill, another hill comes into view. nobody gave up since we've been walking for an hour already. a great view of the sunset can be ahead of us. we crossed path with some cows, carabaos and a tree full of crows. what a surprise to see no houses on these hills. either the hills is owned by someone or it's just that it's too far from the central village.just as we reach the peak of one hill, again another hill comes into view yet it still hides the view of the rising sun. one thing that kept us from walking was the beautiful grassy hills. we were like in Gulugod hill in Batangas. from one of the peaks, a great view of Mangkawayan village, Tinaga island's central village. located opposite shoreline of Mahabang Buhangin. from here, we can feel that there's one last hill to trek for a peek of the sun.we went farther up and reached the peak just in time for the sun's display of its rays. took a lot of silhouette jump shots and took a time seeing the sea that connects to Pacific ocean. more beach shorelines can be viewed from there. next to the beaches... i should say that the hills of this island gives it a great character. which simply meant that there's more to explore in Calaguas beyond beautiful beaches.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

ending a day in calaguas

seeing the sun going down with the rest of the group who positioned themselves on top of rocks after passing by hip-deep waters. we had the whole island by ourselves. this was our last stop for the day. unlike the other side, which is rocky and untouched, this shoreline has all the signs that it has been occupied by campers. remains of burned twigs and darkened rocks and a small damaged cottage.the hills though from afar looks ordinary but when one sets foot in the island, the bushes becomes a very interesting sight. it was like an ornamental field, a natural landscape. the boatman didn't rush us from taking shots, in fact they chose the sites where we can explore the island. each climbed over a huge rock to get a view of the sunset. it was cloudy and so there was not much to shoot, yet the fact that we get a great view of the other islands, it was relaxing. we ended the day just as i wanted it.we then left the island, our boat man decided to pass by the last island and made our way back to our camp site. a night of short stories and good cooked food kept us awake until midnight.

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