Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Coron Island Hopping Day 2

Calamian Group of Islands Beach Bumming (Coron) July, 25-28, 2012

Day 2 - Kayangan Lake, Malcapuya, Ditaytayan Island Beach Hopping

Malcapuya Island
It is Thursday, quite sunny, and we are planning to start of our Day 2 by scouring through the islands at the south portion of the Calamian Group of Islands. I have two options back then, whether to go on a group trip with many others as coordinated by the hotel or plan it ourselves. We chose the latter after we have coordinated with discounted rates with our tricycle driver's contacts (Tabs) and we even have the freedom to dictate which islands we would like to go to.

I was initially planning to have Ditaytayan Island, then to Malcapuya and lastly at Coron Island where we can visit Kayangan Lake, Siete Pecados, Twin Lagoon, Banol Beach and Barracuda Lakes.

It was unfortunate though, that since April, there were issues among the chieftains of the Tagbanwa Tribe and some areas of the Coron Island are forbidden to be visited by tourists as I have confirmed by speaking to one of their chieftains. They need to get over this and the government to intervene as tourism in this area is affected.

So we ended up for Kayangan Lake in Coron Island, Malcapuya Island and Ditaytayan Island.

Before heading off, at around 8:00AM we bought fresh fish from the Coron Public Market for our lunch later. We bought a unicorn fish and a bangus-like fish I forgot to ask the name.

We hired the service of our trike driver, Tabs, again. And this time he only charged as for P9/pax per way to the market and pier.

Coron Public Market

The boat ride's cost to the said islands is P4000 which initially should be P7000 if going through the usual channels. Excluding here are the fees for Malcapuya at P150/pax and Kayangan Lake for P200 (payable at the barangay hall at Coron Town with the chieftain). Ditaytayan is free.

At Coron Pier on our way to our 2nd Day Island Hop

Our first Island stop is the farthest island from the Coron pier, at about 31.1km south and it is the Ditaytayan Island. When we were there, no one is around and we have heard that this is the best island in Calamian for jumpshots due to its beach topography. We were however asked not to go further inside the island and instead remain on the beach area due to a mosquito locally called as Alik-lik that has toxins whenever they bite. Travel time is about an hour and a half.

Ditaytayan Island

Doing what this island is best for... Jumpshots!

After an hour of stay at Ditaytayan Island, we now head back north and stop over at Malcapuya Island for our lunch. This is the best island to have lunch due to the shelters available. Our lunch were the fresh fish we bought from the market which our boatman Marc, grilled for us and the Unicorn fish tastes the best!

Lunch at Malcapuya Island

After lunch, we then head back to our usual photo ops routine. The east side of the island has rocks to climb and has a great view back south where you can see the Banana and Ditaytayan Islands.

Surveying the southern Calamian Islands from Malcapuya
Rocks to climb at Malcapuya's East side

At the west side are also rocky parts where you can trek by the beach side during low tide. Snorkeling here will also give you surprises.

Snorkeling at Malcapuya Island West Side

Underwater shot at Malcapuya Island

After 2 hours, we then head back north for the Coron Island trip, specifically the Kayangan Lake.
However while in the middle of Sulu Sea, we had an adventure of our lives upon learning the once low pressure area near Davao is now a tropical Storm called Gener (intl. Saola) and is already near Samar. We had this squall in front of us blocking everything at north which then later slammed us with hard rain, wind and waves.

Squall in the middle of Sulu sea due to Tropical Storm Gener (Intl Saola)

And this is how we looked like while our boat went exactly under it.

This footage was used by Western Pacific Weather for their news cast on Tropical Storm Saola.
Great thanks to our skillful boatman named Marc with his "Sniper" boat for keeping us safe while under this storm. You may be able to contact him via Kuya Tabs at 09074451854.

Finally we reached Coron Island in one piece and headed to Kayangan lake.

Kayangan Lake Hike Entrance

There is a short hike up to see the splendor of gigantic granite islands to check out. Beware of slippery clay soil though.

Kayangan Lake Hike

We then hiked down from this area and from there, alas, we reached Kayangan Lake! One of the cleanest and clearest lake in the world. There are shrimps and baby sword fishes everywhere that is not afraid of us and would even like to swim with us!

Splendor of Kayangan Lake at Coron Island, Palawan

Snorkeling beneath it shows how clean this lake is.

School of baby Swordfish who would not hesitate to swim with you.

Lone fish at Kayangan Lake

We ended the day by having dinner at Food Trip beside the Coron Town Plaza. The restaurant looks like a carinderia (mini-restaurant) so we thought that the cost of the food would be minimal. However we were surprised that a Sinigang na Hipon (Sour Soup Shrimp) with only 2 pieces of sugpo (big shrimp) already costs P350! We were too hungry and too tired so we just gave in. The food tastes good though.

This ended our 2nd day in Coron.

Openstreetmap Philippines Map (link)
Schadow1 Expeditions Contributions (link)

How to use for your Navigation System (link)

View Coron Island Hopping in a larger map

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3

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