Monday, November 22, 2010

Mixed Pix

Island-Hopping in Burdeos Day 1

Story by Claire Raborar;

It was already 10a.m. when we finally settled our transportation that would take us to the town of Burdeos from Isla Polillo Beach Resort. Charlie and I originally planned to rent a tricycle (Php200/head) from Polillo Town to Burdeos and leave around 8a.m. but we decided to rent a van when the other guests of the resort decided to join us in checking out the beaches at Burdeos. We spent a bit of time haggling for the van rental because it was quite expensive for a round-trip fare (Php2500 excluding the petrol). In the end, it was all worth it because we were able to save more by joining Aiza and her friends when we split the boat rental for the island-hopping as well.

It took us more than an hour to reach the town proper of Burdeos. The roads are quite rough and bumpy and probably would have been worse in the rainy season. The scenic rice fields and lush forest, however, as well as the adorable “bear” inside the van with us, were a pleasant diversion from the bouncy and uneventful trip. Upon reaching Barangay Poblacion, we went straight to Sabang Pier to look for a boatman. We found one who agreed to our “customized trip” for Php1500 only (standard rate is Php2000). Charlie and I would go island-hopping and would be dropped on one of the islands to camp for the night while Aiza and her friends would simply be dropped on an island of their choice where they would spend the rest of the day before going back to Isla Polillo Beach Resort.

Island-Hopping in Burdeos Day 2

The Minasawa Game Refuge and Bird Sanctuary is a 4-5 hectare island that was established as a sanctuary by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to protect the bird population. 
Exploring the islands around the remote municipality of Burdeos the previous day had been a very satisfying experience for us, as we enjoy exploring the off the beaten track as much as the well-trodden path. Secluded and unknown, our journey to Burdeos had been a challenging quest, but certainly not an inconvenience. Our first day of island exploration had revealed not only beautiful natural wonders but also friendly and hospital people who had made our stay enjoyable and memorable.

On our second day in Burdeos, we set off again to explore its natural attractions that include beautiful caves, scenic beaches, a bird sanctuary and a mangrove forest. I had been looking forward to visiting the bird sanctuary, as I had seen it mentioned when we were researching noteworthy places to visit in Burdeos. We had visited a couple of island beaches and even camped on one of them the previous day so we thought it would be nice to do some bird watching especially on the islands of Polillo which are known as haven for a large number of different bird species.


Story by Claire Raborar:

Isla Polillo Beach Resort was the only fully operational resort that we found online while looking for a place to stay in Polillo Island in Quezon Province. Another exclusive resort called Balesin Resort (located on Balesin Island off the coast of Polillo) was currently under renovation. It turned out to be a good thing that we booked our first night’s accommodation with the resort in advance. We hadn’t expected the journey from Manila to this remote island in Quezon to be so long and tiring, and finding a place to stay in an unfamiliar area with heavy backpacks in tow would have made everything more stressful. The serenity of this beach resort, however, with its lush surroundings and the melodic calls of the many birds that frequent the area was a great breather for us after the uncomfortable and chaotic journey.


Monday, November 8, 2010


A fellow Polillian and a friend Arden Mopera exhibited many of his paintings at the T.U.P. ALUMNI ART EXHIBIT 2010 last October 14. Here are some of it;

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Polillo to Burdeos Mountain Biking (PART 2)

 DAY 2

The next day, had breakfast before we Island Hop. The rainbow was enough to tell us of the weather for that day. It was an amazing sight to be traveling on the boat seeing the islands around. The water was getting clearer as we arrive near our island destination, we could see the corals, it was an awesome sight. The small island is a paradise, we took pictures, ate a bit, swam and enjoyed the whole island. The crustaceans, corals, mangroves and sea urchins were a real eye candy.

Start of the day, Island Hopping!

Flowers/plants that grows on the sea bed.

Coral reefs, bare naked.

Snake-like pathway, lowtide.

Clear, cold and refreshing sea water.

LSS: Pearly shells. From the ocean lolz

April and Allan (our gracious host).

Aquatic blue.

Island Paradise.

Our original plan was to stay there for 2 days and 1 night. Fortunately (or unfortunately for Gary haha), the boat which was suppose to take us back to the Real port this morning had some sort of trouble, which was what I (or most of us) exactly wanted! With this we can visit more islands today! Whooo!

Beach Bum Marlon

Malvin, wasted, restless sleep and major hang over haha

Blue eyed sea urchin.

Flowers on the mangroves.

Flower boy Marlon, bitch haha!

Big Corals seen during lowtide:

The 2nd island we visited is as amazing as the 1st, this time it had some locals, animals and houses. It was also were we had lunch. We even saw some tiger sharks. An hour here felt like 3-4 hours, time seems slow and we enjoyed every minute of it.

Tiger sharks up-close.

Tiger sharks being held by Jon.

By lunch time, we were all starving, and boy did we love what we had. Lotsa fish, fried and with sabaw (soup). After that we tried visiting another island which had caves, but due to time constraints we just sailed close to it. Its really beautiful, the corals on the side of the island cave was the size of a boulder or even bigger.
We then went to this final island we went at, which had a nipa hut where we again had rest (yeah beach bum life man!). The corals, mangroves, crustaceans, and the aqua blue sea was really amazing and awesome! If only I had brought enough battery for my digicam, I could take pictures every minute.

Crusty the crustacean

Roses among the thorns

Dried fish, one of the best food in the Philippines!

More corals beside the mangroves.

The rest house where we took a nap.

Group shot.

More beautiful islands we couldn't get enough of.

Gary looking for more souvenirs.

There was this white house which had a third floor, and on the roof top you could see a bird's eyeview of the surrounding islands. Man, we couldn't get enough of the beauty surrounding us. Thank God for places like this, for the beach, the trees, islands and the beautiful sunny skies.
Lastly, we went to this floating hut, but one wrong move/fall your dead. Why? Sea urchins lurk the aquatic blue beneath. After that my camera went dead, I had no more charged batteries.

Wallpaper anyone?

Bird's eye-view on one of the island's highest point:

Last stop, floating beach house

One wrong move, you're dead meat.

Sea urchins lurk beneath.

We went home, rested and left the island around 2am. Upon seeing my bike being placed on top of the jeep with the stanchion hitting one bar of the roofrack, I asked the conductor to remove my bike. Me, Gary and Malvin decided to bike back going to the Anawan port. It was raining, dark, cold and muddy, hell what's new? we've ridden in these conditions before haha its just another adventure for us. The rest of the gang rode the jeep with their bikes on top. We were just 15 mins. behind them. Another 3 hour trip back to Real port and 3 hours more for the road trip back to our homes. Its one of the cheapest rides and beach trips I've ever had. We just spend more than 1,500 pesos.

Thanks to Allan for organizing this. Thanks to Gary for the hitch. To the rest of the gang, thanks for the great company, the fart moments and the unending laughter, sober or not. ;)