Like a jack-o-box, my thoughts and plans for my birthday travel this year were springing as the days are coming a close. With more than 7,000 plus islands packed brimming with natural wonders, I am baffled which one to choose. Last year was an unforgettable year at Isla del Fuego . So, I want this year to be as awesome as it was.
Out of the blue Camiguin surfaces in my mind and it was my “Eureka moment!” With me to join the celebration are fellow #Julybabies : Rachael and Vib just don’t mind the asking about age (giggles) and friends : Reggie, Alvin and Marian.
With Cagayan de Oro as our gateway to Camiguin, we arrived at Laguindingan airport at dusk (it’s almost 1 hour and 30 mins drive away from the city center) instantly, we stormed off to Cagayan de Oro city right away for our accommodation and braced for an early trip to Camiguin.
Here comes my big day, we hit off the road with Agora Bus terminal, Cagayan de Oro as our starting point and took a bus going to Balingoan,Misamis Oriental. After all the twist and turns of the winding road, we have reached the port a little earlier than scheduled. Now on board, cruising is roughly around 2 hrs so better have something to keep you occupied like a book to read, a good playlist to listen, a bunch of cracks to nibble or simply take a power nap. BTW I did the latter instead, lol. XD
The peculiar siren had interrupted my power nap and we have reached, the “Island Born of Fire.” This tiny island geographically speaking and by populace is hosting 7 volcanoes under its roof. Upon arrival our tour guide slash driver slash photographer is one Kuya Teddy’s buddy, Kuya Rodel happily greeted us and never wasted a second, eventually the tour kicked off!
I love the rustic feel the island is giving me, serene coastlines bedecked with coconut trees and the lush vegetation of the back drop of the volcanic mountain was picture perfect.
Nestled at foot of verdant mountain ranges of Mt. Tipoong, was an oasias dripping at about 250 feet high of Katigbawasan falls, you’ll see a drizzling water glimmering like a precious stone as the sun stroke at the threadlike fineness of the water. The water is clear in fact you see the rocky bottom of the pool with ice-cold level. The rich faunas around it was a magnificent scenery. “What an opener of the island tour ,” I said to myself.
Comes next is another scenic view of Camiguin island, I love sea cliffs specially if it offer great view like the one here in Camiguin called Tongatoc Cove with the raging waves swashing below and a beautiful cove on the background a good cover photo in facebook.lol
What follows is the iconic symbol of Camiguin island, the Sunken cemetery. The product of a bitter past from the infamous 1871 Mount Vulcan eruption paved the way to this one of a kind attraction specially for diving . A humongous cross marker stood in the middle of the sea embarked on solidified lava, the same location where the original one once stood. A tour in the island is not complete without dropping by here.
Visiting another volcanic victim of the eruption, the Guiob Church Ruins. Shaded with towering trees and covered by moss, this placed continue to breath. Still serves a place to pray, you can buy candles outside the ruins and have your tranquil time while inside the fortress of the adobe walls. Also, you can see the remnants of the used to be belfry and convent of Cotta Bato.
Time to cool off, our guide took us to Sto. Nino Cold spring. The place features one main pool with deepness ranges from 4 ft to 6 ft with sandy bottom below it is a kiddie pool with a cute miniature of an island. The water is really cold much like water of ice-cold water at first but as you plunge more, you’ll get used to the coldness. Also, I made a discovery while being idle on the shallow end, they have Doctor fish in the pool too similar to the 300 years old Balete tree of Siquijor. After, chilling out here literally with a fresh coconut at hand we have to move to another destination.
Time had play a tricked on us little did we noticed the day is almost calling a close and I think there is no better way to seal the day jam-packed with activities than idly basked in a luke warm water of Ardent Hibuk -hibuk Spring Resort. The spring is subdivided into 3 tiers according to warmness, it was a little dusky when we arrived good thing they provide lights in the spring. I enjoyed relaxing and feeling the water soothing me, though how I wish it go up a degree higher.
The sun had set on the horizons calling it a day for us and yes, we have to hit our sac and be ready to conquer the crowning jewel of Camiguin, the White Island. Luckily we are housed near the point off going to the famed island.
At the crack of the day, the sea was calm and we had a smooth board. The moment I set foot, I was at bliss of the breath-taking view of the island, the raging tortoise sea is just perfect as a sun worshiper it was Utopia found.
Exhilarating with joy my big day had a blast in this island paradise of Camiguin, no pinch of regret, in deed. As Danny Kaye once said, “To travel is to take a journey into yourself.” I dare say, self discovery would be longest journey one might have in his lifetime along with it comes places and people that makes up the journey.#