The sun had barely awakened from its slumber when we began to set off for the rolling hills on the western side of the island. It was almost the start of the rainy season – it would actually rain almost every late afternoon – but the oppressive heat during much of the day forced us to plan an early morning trek when the temperature would be more tolerable. We woke up just in time to catch a picturesque sunrise and by 6 AM we were on our way.
It was one of those things we had dreaded on a long trip and it happened on the morning we were set to go on an island-hopping tour at Romblon Island. Leo felt a stabbing pain on his lower back on our way out of the Parc Bay Mansion. Fortunately though it wasn’t as bad as we first thought and he was able to manage his condition as we boarded our boat towards the group of three islands lying off the western coast of Romblon Island. And fortunately so because it was a beautiful, sunny day.
There are only two seasons in the Philippines: wet and dry. The dry season typically runs from November to May, with the wet season – usually the time for rains and typhoons – picking up the rest. Filipinos often refer to the dry and hot months from April to May as summer, an attempt to identify it with the closest season in temperate countries. Continue reading Magalawa Island: Can’t Wait for Summer
Our visit to little Potipot Island in Zambales was supposed to be just a side trip on our way back from our stint at Cabongaoan Beach in Burgos, Pangasinan. We were not even supposed to spend a night at Zambales but originally planned to stay at Cabo Beach for two nights before proceeding to Zambales and on to Metro Manila and home the following day. We’ve been to Potipot Island in 2012 so we weren’t exactly dying to see the place. But since our friends haven’t been there we offered to accompany them to the island.
August and January are not your normal island-hopping, beach-combing months in the Philippines. Typhoons are the norm in August and January lies smack in the middle of the northeast monsoon season that can make for scary inter-island boat trips due to the strong waves. For some strange reason we ended up visiting Cagbalete, a scenic island in the Pacific Ocean lying off the town of Mauban in Quezon province, during those very same months.
We’ve been here before when these two destinations and Pagbilao’s Puting Buhangin Beach were largely outside the tour radars of most local travelers. Five years ago. We had not considered coming back until recently when we visited Nina’s aunt and uncle in Tiaong, Quezon. Since Padre Burgos town – the jump-off point for a trip to Borawan Island and Dampalitan Beach – was just two hours away we decided it was time for a return visit. Continue reading Return to Borawan Island and Dampalitan Beach
We arrived on the sandy beach after walking a moderate distance from our anchored boat. Some visitors were headed straight for the Catholic shrine immediately to our front but we detoured to the left and up a flight of steps chiseled from the precipitous limestone outcrops. The steps were quite narrow and there was a line of people waiting for their turn at the view deck. After waiting for a few minutes we finally got to reach the vantage point for a breathtaking view.