Sometimes, we need to sit back and enjoy some beautiful scenery. If you are thinking of taking a break from the bustling City of Cebu and looking forward to laying back for a vacation, try to visit the “Vegetable Basket of Cebu”, “Summer Capital of Cebu” and “The Little Baguio of Cebu”, Dalaguete!
That was one fine Sunday morning when my friends with the same interests as me met up in Cebu South Bus Terminal for a two days escape to this beautiful destination in the Southern part of Cebu. Obviously, my adventurous spirit was fully electrified that moment the fact that I haven’t explored the town yet.
After 4 hours of riding on a bus, we finally arrived the Municipality of Dalaguete on a chilly afternoon. We drop-off in one the convenience store in the town where Tina and Daphne waited for us and the rest of the group. Finally, the waiting game was finally over after a couple of minutes. We instantly headed ourselves along with the big bag packs on our back to the cab that we rented for our 2 days adventuring and wandering in the town.
Before proceeding to our first destination, we took a midday meal to recharged our body and proceeded to Mantalongon Public Market to buy food for our overnight camp. In that moment time, it obviously shows that it will be a great yet fun adventure with the circle.
Under that scorching heat of the sun, everyone was so excited to go on with our journey. As we’ve looked all around the environment we felt so lucky because of the opportunity that we were able to treat ourselves to an adventurous relaxation.
Whether you’re craving adventure or relaxation, I can say that this town is the perfect one. Here are the cool places that we’ve visited during this two days adventure!
While we are on our way to the community of Lugsungan to unmask the spectacular Casino Peak. I was rewarded with a cool breeze and the sight of unique rock formations along the way. Since we want to cool down first after basking around under the heat of the sun, we decided to explore the place. I was surprised with what I’ve seen, from its lofty peaks, scenic landscapes, extremely impressive rock formations and mystical caves.
Most of its rock is still intact since it is not yet often visited. Thus, I instantly grabbed the opportunity to climb to the top of the stunning rocks and took photos with the picturesque background of Osmeña Peak.
When Casino Peak opened officially this year, it got trending on social medias and the crowd gets loco especially those thrill trekkers. Aside from that, once you’ve reached the top it will give you the majestic and photogenic view. The background is like you are in Bohol Chocolate Hills!
After the uphill ride, we started our trek going to the peak. The trek was not difficult. The only challenge we encountered is the uphill rocky climb with a narrow path along the way.
It took us 30 minutes before we reached the stunning view of Lunsagan from the top. I was surprised with the seemingly giant mole in the background that looks like the Chocolate Hills in Bohol.
What’s with the name CASINO?
When we reached the jump-off area going to the peak, I’ve got the chance to speak with one of the locals and asked why they called it Casino and here’s what I’ve learned. The land was owned namely “Seno”, locals called it “Kang Seno” or “Ka Sino” which means owned by Seno. Until the land was being acknowledged as “Casino Peak”.
HOW TO GET THERE:
From Cebu South Bus Terminal take a Bus going to Dalaguete (One-way fare is 140.00 Php/Bus with AC and 120.00 Php/ Non-AC). Inform the driver to drop you off at downtown Dalaguete, Cebu or at 7/11 Convenience Store, travel time may take 3-4 hours depends on the traffic. From downtown Dalaguete, take a habal-habal/motorbike ride going to Brgy. Lunsangan, Dalaguete, Casino Peak. The fare is 150 Php, depends on how you will negotiate with the driver.
The Municipality of Dalaguete has been famous to its cooling and relaxing Osmeña Peak. But you can’t end up your trail there! There’s actually a place in the town where you can see a huge monolithic rock called the Kandungaw Peak situated in an uphill community of Maloray, Dalaguete, Cebu.
Our trail ended up in Kandungaw Peak but our story doesn’t end here. We arrived the jump off area of Brgy. Maloray at around 6:00 o’clock in the evening. Obviously, the uphill trail going to the peak is a bit dark and good thing I have my headlamp with me. We are so lucky as well as the trail going to the top was well established and there’s a concrete footpath so nothing to worry about.
After 30 minutes of enduring the dark trail of Kandungaw, we finally reached the camp site. The spot was just maybe around 15 diameters and a cliff on the side. Even though it was a bit dark, I can see the isolated and spectacular surface rock outcrop standing just ahead of us and the heavens were filled with a cacophony of stars.
We then quickly set up our tents and prepared our dinner. After we took the main meal of the day, we had the socials night. That was one of the best camp outs I had, as we shared great stories under the cooling darkness of the mountain. All of us embracing the night that is full of laughter, giggling and chuckling. Best night ever, really!
At around 11:00 o’clock in the evening, small drops of water starting to fall from the sky and the atmosphere started to become icy. There were no trees even where we can hide the cold winds. And here you again, being weak in cold temperature started to flow my human body. So I rapidly went inside the tent to give comfort with my chilly body. Good thing, I have Jaimro who spent the night with me in the same tent. Unfortunately, the both of us are having trouble to get some sleep because of the pebbly surface in our back. Even though it was a sufferable one, we were still able to get some sleep.
The next day, we were so lucky with the friendly weather surrounded by the azure skies and natural background of mountains covered with grass and trees. And I finally saw the prominent peak of Kandungaw in a clearer vision.Everyone was so excited to climb the peak, so after breakfast, we quickly packed our pieces of stuff including our tents. Because of the excitement, Joseph and I are the first who rapidly climbed the marvelous rock standing in front of us that’s towering 650 meters above sea level. Upon reaching the top of Kandungaw, my adventurous spirit was rewarded with the mesmerizing landscapes. Aside from that, I was able to unmask the lovely peaks of Lovers and Sunset Peak that is facing in front of Kandungaw Peak. Because of the picturesque view and awe-inspiring background, we spent a lot of time in taking photos.Our climb to Kandungaw Peak was one of the breathtaking scenery that I’ve seen in my adventures. As I saw Kandungaw, I knew an adventure was going to happen.
HOW TO GET THERE:
From Cebu South Bus Terminal take a Bus going to Dalaguete (One-way fare is 140.00 Php/Bus with AC and 120.00 Php/ Non-AC). Inform the driver to drop you off at downtown Dalaguete, Cebu or at 7/11 Convenience Store, travel time may take 3-4 hours depends on the traffic. From downtown Dalaguete, take a habal-habal/motorbike ride going to Brgy. Maloray, Dalaguete, Cebu. The fare is 150 Php, depends on how you will negotiate with the driver.
After the group photo session at Kandungaw Peak, we decided to take a quick peek to the majestic Kandungaw Cave. Since the cave is just situated under the peak so there’s nothing to worry about of getting there even though it is a 90 degrees trail down from the peak.
As we reached the entrance of the cave, I’m a bit frightened. In that moment in time, I had the feeling that someone will be going to munch and chomp me inside. Lol! But as a conqueror, I tried to enter the cave and my eyes got surprised with the mix crystalline formation. Inside the cave is muddy and dark so you need to bring a flashlight with you. But since I left my headlamp inside the bag, I used my mobile phone instead.
I saw terrific and fantastic stone arrangement and is full of life and reserves a tremendously beautiful sight inside. Our quick peeks in Kandungaw Cave was truly worth it.
After we explore the cave, we supposed to climb the Lovers and Sunset Peak, but Kandungaw Peak is more than enough already. Also, everyone was excited to chase the Cambais Falls in Alegria, Cebu. Thus, we ended up to take the descending trail back to the jump off area.
SIDE TRIPPING TO CAMBAIS FALLS IN ALEGRIA, CEBU
Our journey to Dalaguete, Cebu was not the end of our story. We continued our adventure at Cambais Falls, Alegria, Cebu Cebu for us to indulge and cool down. Our ride collaborates the scorching heat of the sun but no one doesn’t have a care because we had so much fun along the way.
Though this is my third time visit the mesmerizing falls of Cambais but seems it still new to me. The fact that I am with different people, another experience and we had other stories to share.
If you wish to visit and explore the beautiful Municipality of Dalaguete, Cebu here’s a simple travel guide and tips.
DAY 1-Sunday (August 27, 2017)
08:00 AM- Meet up/Assembly time at Cebu South Bus Terminal
09:00 AM- ETD Dalaguete Town Proper
12:00 NN- ETA Dalaguete Town Proper
01:00 PM- Lunch at Dalaguete Food Lane
02:30 PM- Quick Jaunt at Dalaguete Rock Formation
03:00 PM- Ascend to Casino Peak
04:30 PM- Descend to Jump-off point
05:00 PM- ETD to Kandungaw Peak
06:00 PM- ETA jump-off point/ Registration
06:30 PM- Ascend to Kandungaw Peak/Camp Site
07:00 PM- Set up Camp/ Preparation for dinner
08:00 PM- Dinner/Socials
12:00 MN- Lights off
DAY 2-Monday ( August 28, 2017)
05:00 AM- Wake-up time/ Preparation for breakfast/Sunrise viewing
06:00 AM- Breakfast
07:00 AM- Explore Kandungaw Peak/Kandungaw Cave
09:30 AM- Descend to Jump-off point
10:00 AM- ETD to Calierohan Public Market
11:30 AM- ETA Calierohan Public Market
12:00 NN- Lunch Time/Buy Goods
01:00 PM- ETD to Cambais Falls, Alegria, Cebu
02:00 PM- ETA Cambais Falls, Alegria Cebu/
02:30 PM- Short hike going to the main stream of Cambais Falls
04:00 PM- ETD to Mantalongon Town Proper/Bus Station
05:00 PM- ETA Mantalongon Town Proper/Bus Station
05:30 PM- ETD to Cebu City
08:00 PM- ETA Cebu City
-Home Sweet Home-
140 PHP- Air-conditioned bus fare from Cebu City to Dalaguete proper ( Same rate with Mantalongon to Cebu City)
5000 PHP- Cab rental for 2 days/ Snacks / Miscellaneous/ divided by 10 persons (500 PHP/Pax) .(as of this writing).
150 PHP- Lunch/Breakfast
*Note- All figures are subject to change without prior notice.
1. Always plan ahead your tour. And for guide ship services with your Kandungaw climb, you may contact Junior at 09305156836.
2. There are some parts of Dalaguete that are difficult to get a ride. For your convenience, you may contact Tina Obiedo Salonoy at 09096838554 for a multi-cab/car rental. You can negotiate to her with the schedule and prices for car rental/tour services.
3. Be a responsible hiker/traveler so always follow the “LEAVE NO TRACE” practice, Okay!
4. Always wear proper trekking attire and wear sunblock to protect your skin from the sun.
5. Always bring enough food, water, and essential kinds of stuff or necessary for the climb.
6. Respect the locals and be friendly.
Visiting the Summer Capital of Cebu is one the beautiful yet memorable travel adventures I had. It gave me the opportunity to meet a new set of friends and great adventures. Thanks to Tina for making this travel adventures possible especially to your Dad who rode for us to explore your hometown. To my new friends, thanks for giving me such great smile on my face, I really had the best time with you all guys!Because of this 2 days adventure, we are united with great minds. We ended up as a group called, “PUNDOK BANDANA”. Congratulations to all of us and cheers to more adventuring in the near future!
Come and jaunt with me as I will be posting more photos of this misadventures soon!
Mt.Panamao is popularly believed to be one of the mystical mountains in the province of Biliran. This mountain is full of unwritten lores where only few mountaineers dare and doubtful to climb because of its vanishing trails. It is also believed that this mountain is a lost city. Mt.Panamao is known as the 3rd highest mountain in Biliran, Western Leyte towers at 1115 MASL.
According to biliranisland.com, Mt.Panamao is a solfataric active volcano and presumably erupted in 1969.
Now, Panamao is a much-publicized mountaineer’s destination. It looks majestic and serene on clear and sunny days. It is also full of myths and legends that continue to be told among the natives.
Our recent climbed to MT. PANAMAO was truly a remarkable journey in my mountaineering explorations. It was not easy because of its disappearing trail and totally a devastating experience for me because of the trails that’s full of climbing palms and nasty thorny rattan.
THE CONSIDERATION OF THE JOURNEY
When AJ of wanderingsoulscamper invited me to explore and climb Mt.Panamao, I am not really hesitant to say YES! So I did a quick research about the mountain and I’ve heard and read mysterious stories about the mountain which made me more excited and eager to climb Mt. Panamao.
A week before the climb, the group did a practice climb in one of Cebu City’s mountains. AJ, who organized the event was the one who made the ITINERARY for the upcoming major climb and he’s the one who contacted our guide. Thanks Bes!
The group arrived in Ormoc City Port at around 4:00 AM. Upon arrival we took a quick brunch at one of the fast food chain in the city. At around 6:00 in the morning we instantly headed to DUPTOURS terminal to hired a van going to Naval.
We set foot at the Naval bus terminal after a two-hour ride. A public market was nearby so we decided to stop by for breakfast and purchase our food supplies.Afterwards, another van arrived and headed off to the jump-off point at Brgy. Talahid, Sitio Biasong.
We arrived at the jump-off area at around 10:30 in the morning. By the time we were there, the sun was already out in its full glory and a good weather-climb loomed ahead as evidenced by the clear blue sky.
The beginning of the trek was a gradual descending slippery trails that’s full of thorny plants.The air was slight, the trail become more steeper and it seemed my pack become heavier.
After 1 hour and 30 minutes of hiking, our guide, Kuya Julius advised us to take a power lunch and the group concurred the same opinion. We had our lunch along the trail.
It was 1:00 o’clock in the afternoon when we resumed our trek. I can still remember that we hiked a large portion, if not most of pure assault. The trail was not just filled with anything greens but it is a trail of anything thorny green. We came across a good unique flora and faunas.
Before reaching the campsite, we came across a water source surrounded with fat branches and gnarled roots and giant rocks.I was reminded with our adventure climb at Mt.Mandalagan in Negros Occidental.
As we reached the mountains only water source after hours of grappling that surprising rattan. The group decided to take a quick and last rest since we are close to the campsite.
Few minutes later, we then resumed our trek and we need had to do it as fast as we can for us to meet the sunset. However, we had a slow trek because we didn’t see any trail going to the campsite and even our guide was struggling, really! So we actually look for another trail for us to reach the campsite and we had to slash away those thick and green thorny plants. This made our journey slow and long, really! We were like a bunch of lost trekkers for a while there. But wasn’t it what we were aiming for? The thrill and anxiety of losing direction and finding one’s way again.
Everyone was surprised when we reached the campsite. You can never tell that it is a campsite because it is surrounded with plants with long narrow of leaves. So we flatten the area to make it even for us to set up our tents. But we are still lucky enough because we reached the campsite before the daylight fades which made us set up the camp easily.
After setting up our tents, we then prepared our dinner. It was a one perfect night camp for me because aside from celebrating my birthday, the camp site had a perfect view of the summit of Mt.Panamao with an impressive array of mountains at our back.
After dinner, we had socials and everyone are having fun, really!It was an amusing night for me, a moment of a fun evening with friends. As I lay silently with my fellow campers, I felt happy living a life at the present moment surrounded by many friends with the same interests as me. We had the stars as our blankets and the dark forest watching us dream while we slept.
A GLORIOUS MORNING AT MT. PANAMAO
The group woke up at around 5:00 oclock in the morning. We planned for an early ascending climb going to the summit so we can head off early to the neighboring islet which is Higatangan island. After breakfast, at around 8:00 o’clock in the morning, we quickly broke our camp and commended our way up.
Before we resumed our trek way up,we left our load in a flat terrain nearby the campsite to make the hike easier. But no, it wasn’t! Another struggling way surprised us because large rattan blocking our way and we need to slash them away.
After 1 hour, we finally reached the ridge that offers an amazing and breathtaking view of its neighboring island. After the group enjoying the glimpse of the view and the traditional picture taking, we then resumed our trek going to the summit.
From the viewing deck/ridge, we endured another 15 minutes hike to reach the summit. The trail was covered with mossy trees and vegetation.
The summit of Mt. Panamao was covered with huge mossy trees and it was surrounded with yellow toad cleverly camouflaged. The summit was truly majestic and a real paradise. We took a lot of photos and for us to get a perfect angle, we even clung on to whatever there where we can held on to.
After the traditional photo session, we quickly commended our way down. Going down wasn’t as difficult on the way up but still quite challenging because of those nasty rattans.
At around 2:00 oclock in the afternoon, we finally reached the covered open grasslands. We didn’t eat lunch even because of our excitements to come across the neighboring islet. When we were on our way to the exit point of Brgy. Almeria, the sun was fully out and we had a scorching hike way down.
We traversed the route from Brgy. Talahid, Sitio Biasong to Almeria and I learned a few things along the way.
After 1 hour of scorching hike we finally reached the community of Almeria and had a quick rest. Few minutes later, we then rented a bike to drop us at the port for our Higatangan Island side-trip.
(Stories about our Higatangan Island side-trip will be posted soon.)
My Mt. Panamao climb was a very good experience, I can call it a paradise. Though, I am new to the mountaineering community but I can say that I am a true-blooded adventurer because I conquered the vanishing trails of the mountain that’s full of magical stories. The trail was covered with thick forest and the route is complicated. To all who joined this adventure, Congrats for the job well done!
“This is one of Gods natural gifts.Lets give value of sustaining these gifts for our children and grandchildren so that in time, they will remember and thank their grandparents for taking care of these resources.”
-LEAVE NO TRACE-
Day 1- October 28,2017
04:00 AM- ETA Ormoc City Port
06:00 AM- ETD Ormoc City to Naval, Biliran
08:00 AM- ETA Naval, Biliran
08:30 AM- Breakfast/ Purchase goods in the market
09:30 AM- ETD Naval to Jump-off at Brgy. Talahid, Sitio Biasong
10:30 AM- ETA Sitio Biasong
11:00 AM- Start of Trek
12:15 PM- Lunch
01:00 PM- Resumed Trek
05:00 PM- ETA Campsite
05:30 PM- Set-up camp
06:00 PM- Prepare dinner
07:00 PM- Dinner Time
08:00 PM- Socials
11:00 PM- Lights off
Day 2- October 29,2017
05:00 AM- Wake up call
06:00 AM- Breakfast
07:30 AM- Break camp
08:30 AM- Start trek to Summit
09:30 AM- ETA Mt.Panamao Viewing Deck
10:15 AM- ETA Mt.Panamao Summit
11:00 AM- Back to Campsite
12:00 NN- Campsite/Trek to exit point at Brgy.Almeria
02:00 PM- ETA Brgy. Almeria
02:30 PM- Quick rest
03:00 PM- ETD Brgy.Almeria to Higatangan Island
04:30 PM- ETA Higatangan Island
05:00 PM- Prepare dinner
07:00 PM- Dinner time
08:00 PM- Socials
12:00 MN- Lights-off
Day 3- October 30, 2017
06:00 AM- Wake-up call/Breakfast
07:00 AM- Swimming time
10:00 AM- ETD Higatangan sandbar to Higatangan Rock Formation
11:00 AM- ETD Higatangan Rock formation- Naval Port
12:30 PM- ETA Naval Port
0100 PM – ETD Naval to Ormoc City
03:00 PM- ETA Ormoc City/Quick Brunch
03:45 PM- ETD Ormoc City to Cebu City Port
05:45 PM- ETA Cebu City
Home Sweet Home-
1. Always plan ahead your tour. And for guide ship services with your Mt.Panamao climb, you may contact Kuya Julius Sabile on Facebook.
2 Be a responsible hiker/traveler so always follow the “LEAVE NO TRACE” practice, Okay!
3 Always wear proper trekking attire and wear sunblock to protect your skin from the sun and to avoid getting scratches from nasty thorny rattans. The trail has full of rattans, really!
4.Always bring enough food, water, and essential kinds of stuff or necessary for the climb.
5.Respect the locals and be friendly.
If you want to climb the majestic mountain of Mt. Panamao kindly visit BILIRAN ISLAND for more information.
Dislcaimer: All photos are not mine, credits to Arnold Jerodiaz of WANDERINGSOULSCAMPER
They say that it is the journey that matters not the destination but for the case of Mt. Tres Marias in Biliran island, Province of Leyte, it is acceptable to say that it is indeed both the journey and the destination.
Situated at the Eastern part of Visayas region, Mt. Tres Marias is the highest peak of Biliran, towering 1315 MASL.
To reach this beautiful and pristine forest you have to endure 5 to 6 hours trekking activity. And the chance to see wonderful waterfalls.
As I enter the into the forest line that held in myths to be a paradise guarded by snakes and spirits. I was truly amazed!It is amazing how God created all this things and yet only few have appreciate its beauty.
Our journey to Mt.Tres Marias was one of the impulsive adventure I had in my entire life. No plans and itinerary were set. We didn’t even contacted someone for a guide-ship services.
As we did our typical trek from the jump-off point at Brgy. Sampao-Almeria, the only thing that keeps repeating in my mind,is what they said about how challenging the trail is.Yes, it was indeed a challenging trail.The stones in the rivers where we pass through was so slippery.
Before hitting the camp site, we travel across 4 waterfalls. The first flowing waters that we embrace was the Ulan-Ulan Falls, followed by the Recoletos Falls. Recoletos Falls was actually named from a group of athletes coming from University of San Jose-Recoletos. Then the Sampawan Falls and Nomad Falls.Nomads falls was actually named after NOMADS group—a mountaineering group in Cebu City under Inter-Mountaineering Society (IMS).
Despite of our impulsive adventure, I can say that we are so lucky that day. Because we are able to passed by the rivers after the heavy rain.
At around 4PM, we finally reached the camping site. We are so lucky enough to set-up our tents as the massive raindrops began to stop.Aside from that, the water source is just located few meters away from the camping site, but no so much luck because the camping site was muddy, really!
After dinner, we quickly headed back to our tents. I slept like a baby till the break of the dawn because of cold temperature. Oh, before I forgot, I tried to woke up myself at around 1:00 oclock in the morning, because according to my source that will be the best time to see the glowing camp site. Unfortunately, I didn’t see any :(. Maybe because of the massive rain drops that’s why the glowing plants did not appear.
The next morning is another day to rise up for a new journey to the summit Naliwatan Peak. Few minutes later, the majority of the group woke up and prepared breakfast with non-stop teasing on each other of what happened last night. Lol!
We endured almost 1 hour of steep ascending trails before reaching the peak.
It was discouraging to see that the summit offered no view except the other peak of Tres Marias. The summit has a limited space. I believe only 1 tent is enough to pitch on the area. The peak was just around maybe 14 meters in diameter and cliffs on the sides and small trees on the center.
Various insects and flowers can also be found in the forest, abundant insect that was totally different from other mountains. Breathtaking views awaits for you once you reach the top. Always remember that it’s not the destination but it’s the journey .
I felt so blessed when we reached the summit even though it’s in zero visibility. I saw some sea of clouds but in just a few seconds the fog will covered it.
We had a simple snacks and a quick rest. Few pictures taken and down we go to the camp site for our lunch and see explore the other waterfalls in the mountain.
As we reached the camp site, we instantly break our tents and quickly started our descending trek back to the jump-off.
I’m reminded just how insignificant my presence is, in this unyielding landscape. I could feel my fragile mortality in the balance. The self-doubt is ever present. The struggle wasn’t only with my body – it was pure mental as well trying to remain positive with my self-talk. It’s an exercise in humility and introspection. If I ever used my charm in the default world to get things my way, I knew those qualities are worthless currencies on the slope – the mountain accepts or rejects me in its own terms, unconditionally.
With that paradigm, I return to the city, cleansed of my ego, humbled in my demeanor, validated in having made it in one piece, and rich with new friends.
DAY 0- October 13, 2017, Friday
08:00 pm- Meet up Port of Cebu-3
10:00 pm-ETD Cebu Port to Ormoc (via Roble Shipping Lines)
04:00 am- ETA Ormoc City
DAY 1- October 14, 2017, Saturday
05:00 am – ETD Ormoc City to Naval
07:00 am – ETA Naval, Biliran
07:30 am- Breakfast at the town and quick drop at the market
09:30 am -ETA Jump-off via Brgy Sampao/Registration
10:00 am- Start Trek
11:30 am- Ulan-Ulan Falls
12:00 NN- Recoletos Falls/ Lunch
01:00 pm -Resumed Trek
04:00 pm- ETD Camp Site
04:30 pm- Set-up camp
05:00 pm- Prepare for dinner
06:00 pm- Dinner
07:30 pm- Lights off
DAY 2- October 15, 2017, Sunday
05:00 am- wake up call
06:00 am- Prepared breakfast
06:30 am- Breakfast
07:30 am -Started trek going to the summit
08:30 am- ETA Naliwatan Peak/ Summit
10:30 am – ETD Naliwatan Peak to Camp Site
11:00 am- Start Trek back to Jump-off
01:30 pm -ETD Nomad Falls/Lunch
03:30 pm -ETA Brgy Sampao
04:30 pm- ETA Naval town proper
05:00 pm- ETD Naval to Ormoc City
07:00 pm- ETA Ormoc City
07:15 pm- Quick dinner at Ormoc Plaza
08:00 pm- ETD Ormoc Port to Cebu City
10:30 pm- ETA Cebu City
Home Sweet Home
Weekends- My favorite part of the week. Apparently, my boredom strikes again. And I just can’t get enough to be with greens and embracing Mother Nature. When I feel as life becomes boring, I always think of steeping outside and grab some adventures with friends who also have the same interests as me.
We love and dare to find another way to distress through a weekend day hike trek. Thus, we did it with a great idea of river trekking near the community of Talamban. I’ve always heard many stories about Budlaan Falls and Kabang river with it’s hidden natural beauty and I really got curious from its name.
So my passion got triggered that time to have an amazing adventure. As the weather was very friendly, I started to pack my personal necessities.
We started our journey at around 8:00 AM in the morning by meeting our friends and previous colleagues at Gaisano Talamban. While waiting for others to arrive,we had breakfast at one of the fast food restaurant situated in the mall. After the waiting game, at around 10AM, we took a haba-habal ride going to the Jump-off at Brgy. Budlaan.
Before we started our trekking activity, a short prayer was offered and a simple reminders because most of our guest are first timers.
As we continuously hike the raindrops began to pour which made the trail muddy and bit challenging. Few minutes later, we finally arrived and saw the heart-shaped steam of water.
There, we took a quick rest and picture taking. Five minutes after, we resumed our our trek going to Kabang Falls.
We took an almost 1 hour hike with boulders. Moments later, we’re able to reach the beautiful Kabang Falls.
Seeing this kind of place in your most convenient time are great factors to relax and rejuvenate your body after a stressful week of work.
As we reached the Kabang Falls, we again took a quick break. Unfortunately, the flood came and the flowing waters showed uncontrollable anger. So the group decided to take lunch at the place while waiting for the raging falls to calm.
We are stranded for almost 2 hours. So the group decided to took a different trail traversing to Mt.Kan-irag/ Sirao Peak.
We took a steeped ascending climb and had to cross another river for us to get through with the trail going to Mt.Kan-Irag. After 2 hours, we finally reached the mountainous community of Sirao. We had another quick break to energized our body. 🙂
Few minutes later, we resumed our hike going to the peak of Mt.Kan-Irag. As we walk through the steeped and uphill climb, I made a lot of stops to took photos of the beautiful background surrounded by greens.
Thirty minutes after, we finally reached the summit. Enduring dozens of climbs and trek was paid off as we reached the peak.
The view from the peak was spectacular. We had a perfect city view in front of us with an impressive array of mountains at our back.
At 780 meters, Mt. Kan-Irag is not a particularly high mountain, but the long traverse towards the peak, the razor-sharp cogon grass that covers the entire mountainside.
The mountain was so glorious that time since there’s also a group of trekkers right next to us. It was an amusing day for me, a moment of a fun weekend with friends. As I sat silently with my fellow campers and trekkers, I felt happy living a life at the present moment surrounded by many friends with the same interests as me.
Congratulations to all the First Timers for a Climb well done!
DAY HIKE ITINERARY:
09:00 AM- Meet up at Gaisano Talamban
10:00 AM- ETD Jump-off Brgy Budlaan
12:00 NN- ETA Kabang Falls/ Lunch
01:00 PM- Resumed Trek
03:00 PM- ETA Brgy. Sirao
03:30 PM- Continue Trek
04:30 PM- ETA Mt.Kan-Irag Peak/Summit
Here are my personal tip that might help you on how to get there!
-LEAVE NO TRACE-
Mt.Kapayas is one of Cebu’s highest peak located at Catmon, Cebu, Philppines. The mountain is known as the second highest peak in Cebu towering 800 MASL. This mountain is also called Torre by the locals. According to our guide, it is used to be the hidden place of General Maxilom during the World War II.
That was the last day of September when I hosted an event called” Pundok Bandana-Friendship Climb”held at Mt. Kapayas, Catmon, Cebu. It was a gathering of individuals who are mountaineering enthusiasts. I was surprised with the particpants who joined the event and we had so much fun.
Our journey started at 8:00 AM at Cebu City North Bus Terminal. Joining this event was all strangers. I am bit nervous that moment because I don’t even know most of the partcipants, really! After almost 3 hours on a bus ride, we finally arrived at Catmon proper and met the other participants who arrived first at the town.
Our Friendship climb to Mt.Kapayas was a great experience because we are able to share great thoughts about our climbing experiences and we had a great time during the socials.
What’s more cool about this was, were able to catch up a Fiesta Celebration at Brgy. Tabili, Catmon, Cebu. We had lunch in one of the residences in the community and that was an amazing welcome treat to us.
After enjoying our sumptous lunch, we quickly took our habal-habal ride going to the jump- off point of Agsuwao trail. We started our steepy and muddy uphill climb at around 2:30 in the afternoon.
Along the trail, I made a lot of stops and took pictures of the beautiful scenery sorrounded by greens. The trail going to the camp site was not that really tough. But since it was raining during that time the trail was quite steep which made the trek quite challenging.
After almost 2 hours of ascending climb, we finally reached the house nearby the campsite. Kyno (our guide), advised us to just let our cooksets and foods to the house because we will have our dinner at the place.
According to him, they wont allow people to cook at the campsite. This is to maintain the cleanliness of the mountain.
After a few minutes, we quickly headed uphill to the campsite. And I was surprised with the natural background.
The area awas really clean and we had enough space to set up our tents. After pitching our tents, we headed back to the house which is located just few meters away from the camping area. There we prepared our dinner.
After we took our main meal of the day, we instantly headed back to the campsite and had a great socials.
The nature gave us a great and friendly weather the next morning! We were able to catch a great sunrise over the horizon.
After eaten our meal in the morning, we then prepared our trek going to the summit/peak of Mt.Kapayas. Our journey was started with a simple thanksgiving and short prayer.
Along the way, we saw lots of farm animals and great floras. We only took few rest because we are catching up our time because we were after all our sidetrip to Tinubdan Falls.
After 1 hour we finally reached the summit with great rock formations. There, we took a lot of photshoot. We had and amazing view of Mt. Kanlaon and the Northern parts of Cebu.
After spending 1 hour of taking photos, we descended back to the house nearby the campsite to pick up our packs and had lunch. Few minutes after, we made our descending trek back to Brgy. Agsuwao for opur sidetrip to Tinubdan Falls.
Sidetrip at Tinubdan Falls
This is the second time that I’ve jaunted the beautiful Tinubdan Falls. The mesmerizing cascades always made me a surprise. Everyone really enjoyed the flowing waters Tinubdan Falls of . We had a great experience and took a lot of photos.
Moments later of indulging ourselves, we quickly drove going back to Carmon proper and had dinner.
Travel TIPS, ITINERARY, AND EXPENSES
How to get to Mt.Kapayas?
DAY 1- September 30, 2017, Saturday
08:00 am- Meet up North Bus Terminal
09:00 am-ETD northbus terminal
12:00 NN- ETA Camton proper
12:30 am -Lunch at Brgy. Tabili
2:00 pm – ETD Brgy. Tabili going to Agsuwao jump-off
02:30 pm -ETA Jump-off via Agsuwao trail
05:00 pm -ETD Camp site
06:00 pm -Prepare dinner
07:00 pm -Dinner
08:00 pm- Socials
10:00 pm- Lights off
DAY 2- October 1, 2017, Sunday
05:00 am- wake up call
06:00 am- Prepared breakfast
07:00 am- Breakfast then breakcamp
08:00 am -Started trek going to the summit
10:30 am- ETA Mt. Kapayas/SUMMIT
11:30 am – ETD Mt.Kapayas back to Brgy. Agsuwao
12:00 nn- Lunch
02:30 pm -ETD Tinubdan Falls
03:30 pm -ETA Brgy.Tabili
04:30 pm- ETD Catmon proper
05:30 pm- Early dinner at Catmon proper
06:30 pm- ETD Catmon proper
08:30 pm- ETA Cebu City
Home Sweet Home
Camping Permit – Php 640 ( divided by 20 ) = Php 32
Reg Fee + Guide Fee = 250 per head
Brgy. Permit = 20
Fare going to Tinubdan Falls sidetrip ( roundtrip)= 350
Total Damage = Php 650.00
Note: This is not yet included for the Bus Fare going to Catmon from Cebu City.
“An awesome way to spend the weekend is by a satisfying a camp at moutains. Got lots of cuts & bruises but it was super worth it. I got to experience God’s wonderful creations. Thanks to everyone who joined the event and made it more fun. Congrats to ALL of us”!
If you want to experience and conquer the Mt.Kapayas. Make sure to get a permit from the local tourism of Catmon, Cebu. Let us all respect the town. For guideships and permit processing you may call or text Kyno Lim Dumlao at 09993259621.
“Never underestimate a mountains based on it’s difficulty rating”, an extraordinary thought that I always think when climbing mountains. For the past few months, Iv’e always heard about this so called “Spartan Trail”. Many hikers, mountaineers said that it is probably one of the toughest hiking trails in Cebu City.
Toughest, hardest, most difficult, to the highest level: I know that words are powerful, but in this case, that power is not applicable. I have no idea if those words can be used to describe the difficulty of the mountains (especially describing to non-hikers.) I think no one can give the exact description that will fit certain individual’s strength.
HOW I CONQUERED SPARTAN TRAIL?
This mountain has a minor scale in all aspects (trail class, altitude, and what’s not) but still it is on my Top 1 list (as of this writing). I wasn’t mentally prepared and I underestimated this mountain because of the ratings given by some hikers and bloggers as well. “Others found it easy and I found it difficult; others found it difficult and I found it easy.” Be Read and Be Prepared!
My adventure trek to the mountains of Banawa, Cebu City was uneasy, really! We hiked and trek in an open established trail under the heat of the sun.
Our scorching hike to the trail of Spartan was started in a slow pace. We passed by some houses in Paseo Arcenas -Subdivision going to Good Shepherd. After few minutes,we endured an almost 1 hour of uphill climb and then the great view of Cebu City surprised us.
Since it was really a tough trek, we quickly look for a shed of trees where we can power up and fueled our body. Few minutes later, we continued our trek going to Manggahan.
There, we made another stop where we can have a quick rest. 15 minutes later, we resumed our trek going to the deeper part of the Majestic Spartan Trail. We passed by a scenic view inside the forested mountains of Banawa.
I never thought that behind those mountains is a wonderful river where I can do some river trekking. We also passed by a mini pool or called”Jacuzzi”. I was not able to take a quick dip because there is another group who took the place first. Thus, we just quickly resumed our hike.
Moments later, the rain began to pour down the forested spot in Spartan Trail. The locals advised us not to stay in the river if the rain will continuously teem down. Unfortunately, rain didn’t stop so we quickly resumed our uphill climb traversing Brgy.Pamutan.
We endured almost 2 hours of an uphill climb before we finally saw the street or path that leads to Brgy.Pamutan.
Moments later, we finally arrived the place called “Bagsakan”. There, we took our lunch. To illuminate our body, we throw some jokes and had some gin in the table.
Our plan is to continue our hike going to Chalet Hills but we’ve changed it. We resumed our trek going to Brgy. Toong. There, we took a habal-habal ride going to Brgy. Punta.
Then we made our way to Brgy. Tisa and enjoyed “Siomai Sa Tisa”. At around 8PM, we separated our ways and when I arrived home I took a quick shower to immerse my body and laid my bed. That was a long hike yet amazing!
CONQUERING SPARTAN TRAIL ITINERARY, EXPENSES AND TIPS
07:00 AM- Meet up at Rustans Supermarket Banawa
08:00 AM- Start of Trek
08:30 AM- ETA Good Shepherd
09:00 AM- Resume Trek
10:30 AM- River Trekking/Pictorials
12:00 NN- ETA Bagsakan/Pamutan/Lunch
02:30 PM- Resume Hike to Brgy. Toong
04:00 PM- ETA Brgy. Toong
05:00 PM- ETA Brgy. Punta
05:30 PM- ETA Brgy. Tisa
06:00 PM- Dinner at Siomai Sa Tisa
07:30 PM- Home Sweet Home
7.00 PHP- Jeepney ride going to Banawa
100 PHP- Lunch and Snacks
20 PHP – Habal-habal ride going to Brgy. Punta
50 PHP- Dinner at Siomai sa Tisa
We all know that Malapascua Island is just simply charming with heap of sands and rocks in the middle of Visayan Sea. Many foreigners will always enjoy when visiting the island especially when they venture outside the resort. Obviously, most of them get fall in love with the real slice of a Filipino life.
One great weekend, I had another chance to visit the Cebu’s best kept paradise. And I’m always in love with the place because of the great memories I had. Aside from its spectacular sunset and blazing sunrise, I always enjoy to walk along in the long white sand surrounded with tall coconut trees and waters so clear.
This is my fourth time to jaunt around the island. And I always had the great experience. As we probably know that most people come to the island for diving to see the thresher shark, reliably. But since I don’t have the enough skills to go on diving and mmmm…I’m a little bit afraid of ocean deeps, lol! I don’t have the chance to see those thresher sharks.
So if you’re like me, here are the things that you can do for you to enjoy when venturing out Malapascua Island.
1. JAUNT TO DAKIT-DAKIT ISLAND
The island has been called the “Next Boracay” but we don’t think it will ever be like that. If you are not a good diver but still want to see the enchanting world of under water, try to visit Dakit-Dakit island. It is a small island situated around 10 meters away from the main shore of Malapascua Island.
It has been called Dakit-Dakit island by the locals because of the small rock formations. This islet is a good spot also for diving but there is also a spot where non-divers can enjoy to see the wonders of underwater.
2.QUICK PEEK TO CORAL GARDEN
Malapascua Island is a great place to chill out, so if you are not into diving, get ready for a relaxing trip because here is another thing that you can do on the island.
Coral Garden is another great spot to swim or do snorkeling. You can take your mask and fins (or rent some) and get the chance to see the magical world of aquamarine life.
3. SEE THE JAPANESE SUNKEN SHIP
The wreck at Lighthouse was a Japanese World War II landing craft. It was bombed just before landing with a large shipment of cement destined for a gun emplacement. The wreck is in very shallow water – 3m average – and is broken up with the hull in two pieces. The rocks that you will see are actually bags of cement.
4. GO AROUND THE ISLAND
The weather on Malapascua is usually excellent. Typhoon season in the Philippines is from May to December, but Malapascua is rarely affected. Thus, it is the perfect place to do an excursion.
You can easily walk round the island in 2 hours. Or you can hire a motorbike. You could also hire a driver to take you to all the best places on the island.
5. VISIT THE BEACON OF THE ISLAND – LIGHTHOUSE
Enjoys striking views over the northern part of the island. Access is via a steep path (it’s not signposted and you have to pass through someone’s backyard). It’s a five-minute walk up to the lighthouse from the southern edge of Guimbitayan village.
WHERE TO STAY?
When visiting the island of Malapascua, come and stay at Lah Tira Cee .
Formerly known as La Terrasse Malapascua, same management – same staffs. A backpackers haven located next to Montenova hillside. If you want a home while you are travelling in Malapascua Island, stay with us, your family away from home. We love underground music and healthy food. We have vegan, vegetarian, fish and meat dishes that caters to different travelers budget and preference.
Book your accommodation at LAH TIRA CEE, MALAPASCUA, ISLAND
As I reached the Northern most tip of Cebu, I had the perfect dip to its stunning and untouched island in Gibitngil, Medellin, Cebu.
It was the day of the week before Thursday, we took a 3 hours bus ride and 15 minutes boat ride before we caught the beautiful scenery of the island, called Funtastic Island.
My journey to Gibitngil Island was truly amazing since I am with Destination Dream- (A group of travelers ). We had fun indeed the fact that this is also a group team building. After working on a graveyard schedule, I headed directly to South Bus Terminal to meet the group. Didn’t sleep at all to prepare myself for Funtastic island experience .
After 3 hours of a land trip we then settled ourselves for a pump boat ride. The pump boat we hired was totally spacious and clean. That was not an easy ride because of the sea wave and we’re moving up and down. Fifteen minutes after, we finally arrived the secluded island of Gibitngil. But before that, we need to go through to a 10 minutes hike going to Funtastic island.
Minutes later, we then finally saw colorful cottages and started enjoying the blue-green waters of Gibitngil.
As we started to play with the waves, I got slapped in a slimy rocks and I endured many scars as the wave riffled me. huhuh :
When we are about to start the games, I didn’t give attention with those painful scars. All I know is to enjoy and had fun.
WHAT TO DO IN FUNTASTIC ISLAND?
SWIM, SWIM and SWIM!
Funtastic Island is not only a white sand beach but, of course, it has crystal clear pristine water. The beach is very much available to the public and great for most activities allowed by the management that watch over and maintains its natural environment.
GO EXTREME AND ADVENTURE!
You may zip your way from the top of the cliff down to a rock just near the cottages. Cost: P50. Unlike many ziplines, this one is unique because all you see when you look down is water. There’s no point getting scared of falling…even if you don’t know how to swim, you are fully equipped with a life jacket.
If you want to drift your adventurous soul, go ahead and climb your way to the top of the rock that stands around 40 feet. Jump and get splash!
HOW TO GET THERE:
Since we rented a private vehicle and pump boat. I asked the locals on how to get there via public transportation.As far as I remember, here are the following instructions on how to get there.
1. From North Bus Terminal take a bus ride going to Medellin. The fare is around 150 PHP (air-conditioned) one way. Tell the driver to drop you off at Kevin’s Beach Resort or Kawit’s Public Market.
2. From the drop-off point you can get a trisikad ride going to Kawit’s coast where pump boats are waiting and the fare is 10 PHP per head. You can also walk going to the coast since it is just few meter away.
3. From there, ride a ferry and the fare is 20 PHP per head (one way) but you have to wait to for the ferry to get full depending on the size of the boat.
4. You can also rent a private boat that will cost you 1000 PHP back and forth ride. And good for at most 10 people.
This FUNTASTIC experience would not be possible without the effort of Ram (Destination Dream President). We had so much fun and great experience during this Northern escapade. Cheers to all of us!
Here’s a quick peek of our Funtastic Experience at Funtastic Island!
#DNDM #TatakDNDM #DestinationDream #MakeItReal