Friday, March 11, 2011

Camsur Adventure Day 1: Matukad and Gota Beach at Caramoan Islands


 It was Thursday night when we met at Ayala for our 8++ hour trip going to Camsur. This vacation was planned long before and after fitting it to our schedules, we pushed through getting a package from Trek Travel.


As much as I want to plan this trip, I lack resources since most of my favorite forums are blocked in the office and my PC at home is quite slow. Also, I'm still burnout of all the planning since I planned most of the travels I had the past year. I left it to my friends to get a good deal and so, they found Trek Travel which offers the best deal we could ever get to go on a Camsur Trip.

Our package includes land travel from Manila to Camsur and back and covers all other transportation means (boat and land transfers in Caramoan) and also our accommodation. Regularly, the package costs P3,800 per person for a group of 10-12 people and the accommodation is at Rex Inn, however we saw West Peninsula Villas on the net and saw that they have nice facilities so we asked Kuya Yunan to book us there for an additional P200 per person. It was where Survivor Israel's crew stayed when they shot there and so all the props are left behind and now, they are decorations at the inn. (*see separate posts on this)
Props left by survivor crew
As soon as we were complete, we left manila at around 9:30pm. We all slept at the ride going to Camsur. the last thing I remember before dozing off is that we are at Sto. Tomas, Batangas. The next stop over was somewhere in Quezon and the last is already in Bicol. I woke up before we get to Sabang Port. It was around 5:30 am already and the first boat going to Caramoan will soon leave. We all boarded the ferry and journeyed for another 2 hours by sea (we had to endure 2 full hours sitting on hard wood. ouch >_<).

As soon as we got to Guijalo Port, a jeepney was waiting for us and brought us to West Peninsula Villas where we will stay. We went to our rooms and rested for a while. We ate breakfast there and then continued resting. Our next call time is at 1:30pm for the next leg of our adventure.

After we rested (actually, I slept again since I was still a bit sleep deprived), Kuya Yunan called us and we are on our way to our island hopping adventure. A jeepney fetched us (same one that fetched us at the port) and we went to Bikal Port where our boat is waiting for us. Our first stop is at Matukad Island.

It wasn't a sunny day and it drizzled every now and then. The waves aren't that too friendly but we still managed to continue to our destination. The weather was just disappointing since we couldn't see the super clear seas and the beauty of the island but still, the place is simply amazing. The green mountains and white beaches meet the seas (which are blue when sunny) and you could really appreciate the beauty of our country.

As we went to Matukad Island, the boat goes near some other islands which are equally beautiful and amazing. We also went near Gota Beach Resort where survivor crew stays. It was closed for that period since they are filming Survivor (I am not sure what country) this period. Also, most of the islands are also closed since they are also rented for the shoot.

We arrived at Matukad Island and we enjoyed the beach. We took pictures and swam at the waters. It was fun and refreshing. I love the beach!
Shores of Matukad Island
Other side of the shore
Rocks at the side of the beach
Waves are quite strong

They told us that there is a lagoon at the other side of the rocks and there is a big Bangus (Milkfish) that resides there. They call it the Mystical Bangus. There are stories that says that long ago, there are two Bangus living there. One fisherman captured the female one and brought it to his family. They ate the fish and soon they all died. From that day on, no one intended to catch the fish form its habitat. I was just wondering how long has this fish been there. I am not sure on the fish's life span and I tried to research but couldn't find any. Maybe someone knows and be kind enough to put it on the comments section. :)

We climbed the mountain side which involves skills in hanging on sharp rocks and preventing from sliding down just to see the lagoon on the other side. It was difficult climb but since I had been climbing lately, it was a bit easy for me, but my friends had some bruises from it. We reached the top and since I don't want to move any further up, my photo of the lake was not whole. Even though, I still saw the Mystical Bangus when it swam on the side that I could see. I think it was really big even if I am just seeing its shadow from the water. Our guide told us that if we saw the fish, we will be lucky, well I think we were lucky enough to have descended from that rockeries safe and fulfilled of our little achievement.
The Mystical Bangus is somewhere out there
Also, I asked our guide if this was the same lagoon Kuya Kim of Matanglawin featured. He said that it was that and so I was amazed to have been where Kuya Kim was. When I watched that episode, I said to myself that one day I'll go to that place too and it came true that day. I am really happy! :)
view of Matukad Shores from up high
Going down the rocks

After a while of photo ops and swimming (again), we decided to go to the next island. Unfortunately, Lagos Island is not available since Survivor will be shooting there and the island is closed for visitors. We just headed to a small beach just in front of Gota.
Gota Beach Resort from the other island

I couldn't remember the island's name but it is located just in front of one of the Gota Village Resort. It is a small stretch of sand with a large rock formation which you can climb and take pictures of the Gota Village. We stayed there for a while to enjoy the beach. (If anyone knows what this island is called, please post it in the comments section. I am still researching this since I didn't listen to our guide there >_<)

Beach from the top of the big rock
Lone rock in front of the isalnd

Soon, it was time to go. There was one last tour we had infront of the other Gota Village. I was surprised that it doesn't look like the one I saw in pictures but Kuya Yunan said that it looks prettier inside. The front just doesn't look that much appealing.

We got back to the inn at about 6pm and we freshen up before eating dinner at the inn's restaurant. We unwind after and watch TV and played poker and surfed the net. We called it a day since we are all tired and we need to get up early the next day. It was a fun day and I am hoping the next day's adventure will be equally fun.

To be continued on next post...

***
Check my other posts in this topic:
Mobile Blogging at Caramoan
Camsur Adventure [Day 2] [Day 3]
Place to Stay at Caramoan: West Peninsula Villas
Dinner at Caramoan: Seaporch Grill and Restobar 
Wake Boarding at CWC 

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