It was still dark with the sound of waves crashing against the sandy shores of Sabang Beach faintly echoing in the distance when the trike showed up on schedule. Still groggy after waking up a few minutes earlier I lazily picked up my equipment and started to clamber aboard the three-wheeled vehicle that was going to take me to my destination when my trike driver halted me. “Sir, I don’t think you can go to Diguisit Beach in that attire,” he said, smiling at me. I looked up at him in my shorts and sleeveless shirt, “Why not?” He explained that the trip would take us over hilly ground and that it would be very cold. I ended up having to borrow Nina’s jacket – a bit small for me but it was the only heavy clothing available.
Located a few kilometers outside Baler town proper and on the coastal road that runs all the way to Dicasalarin Cove, Diguisit Beach is a favorite location for sunrise shots. This meant waking up at 4AM on a cold December morning at our resort near Sabang Beach and heading out to Diguisit on a rented trike. The car we drove here would have offered better protection against the cold but I wasn’t too confident about navigating there in the dark. The 20-minute ride would prove to be chilly as my trike driver had predicted.
Unlike Sabang Beach, Diguisit has creamy white sand although much coarser than the former. The real attraction at this beach however is its stunning rock formations, making for magnificent sunrise shots. A cluster of huge rock formations known as the Lukso-Lukso Islets are just a few meters from the shoreline, making them easily accessible on foot at low tide. A resort here charges a minimal entrance fee but it was so early when we arrived that no one was around to collect it. A few minutes later, the morning sun began to slowly rise from its slumber.
I later realized that Diguisit Beach actually faces north with wide-open spaces in both the eastern and western horizons. This made it possible to shoot both sunrise and sunset shots – definitely a good reason to come back to this place in the near future.
A little further away to the east are two even bigger rock formations – the Aniao Islets. The nearest islet is actually within walking distance from shore but the crashing waves and the distance of the second islet from the beach will easily discourage any visitor from trekking to that place. With so little time to take sunrise shots, I had to content with capturing both islets from a distance – at the same spot I had chosen to shoot the Lukso-Lukso Islets.
I would visit Diguisit Beach again late morning the following day along with Nina, her aunt and her uncle. Situated on the same road to Cemento Beach, Ermita Hill and Dicasalarin Cove, it was a natural stopover for our half-day tour. Photographed near midday, Diguisit Beach exuded a very different but still magnificent atmosphere. It’s a place I won’t ever get tired of photographing.