December 31, 2009

My recount of 2009's travels continues (read part 1 here). My wanderlust have taken me to see more waterfalls, rock formations, heritage sites, and caves.

I was off to Real, Quezon again one rainy weekend. This time to revisit Balagbag waterfalls.

lantaw@balagbag falls
lantaw in Balagbag falls

It was a rainy week. A low pressure area (LPA) in the South China sea was threatening Luzon's west coast while a typhoon is zipping by the north eastern side. While most put their weekend travel plans on hold, I was on a 4AM bus with two friends to Real, a small rustic town facing the Pacific Ocean, on a falls hunt. I decided to pack light and return to Manila in the afternoon so I just brought minimal photo gears and a small lunch (3 pieces of boiled sweet potato and 2 pieces of banana).

Started August with another "waterfalls hunt". I trekked to Mt. Romelo again on a stormy weekend. I tend to revisit my favorite places more than once in a year. That is the only way one could get the best landscape photos. Timing and luck plays a huge part.

[Wild Side]
Buruwisan's wild side

That weekend I saw another "version" of Buruwisan that I haven't seen before. The river and falls are fuller (I've been there on rainy days before). Wasn't able to go around like I used to, the small streams have swollen.
Before the month ended I flew south to Davao.My wife and I spent a quiet weekend in one of Samal island's hidden coves ( It was our 10th wedding anniversary). The small cove of Canibad was a perfect destination.

Canibad Bangka
uncrowded Canibad

While in Samal, we also made a sidetrip to Monfort Bat Cave. There we saw the largest colony of fruit bats: over a million fruit bats in a series of small caverns.

August was my busiest month. I went back to Lake Sebu to shoot the T'boli dreamweavers for an international organization.


These T'boli women are called "dreamweavers" because the patterns they used for weaving the cloth called T'nalak are inspired by their dreams. Only the women are allowed to weave the T'nalak cloth.

Lang Dulay
Lang Dulay

I had the opportunity to meet Lang Dulay while doing the project. She is a master dreamweaver and is considered to be a National Artist.

Wild Beach
Maira-ira's wild beach

From the fresh cool maintain air of Lake Sebu, I'm off to the rugged landscape of Ilocos Norte with several blogger friends. Maira-ira's Blue Lagoon at the tip of Luzon mainland was worth the very long trip. We also had the chance to visit Bangui's windmills and well as the Kapurpurawan rock formations.

The Lady and the Resting Dragon

On the way back to Manila, we made a very brief stopover in the heritage city of Vigan (considered to be a UNESCO World Heritage site) to shoot the iconic Calle Crisologo.

Calle Crisologo
Calle Crisologo on a rainy evening

Hmmm, can't seem to remember any travel details for October. Either I was too tired or out of budget :).

Started November with a solo trek (on All Saints Day, Nov 1) to Candaba swamp (again). I had a great time watching the terns while waiting for the sunset.

synchronized terns

I also had a chance to visit the heritage town of Taal in Batangas and saw the famous Basilica of St. Martin de Tours (the biggest of its kind in South East Asia) as well as the well preserved Villavicencio gift house.

Basilica of St. Martin de Tours
Basilica of St. Martin de Tours

A trip to Taal is not complete without a visit to the small yet beautiful and mystical church of Our Lady of Caysaysay. The water from its miraculous well is said to heal any ailments.

Our Lady of Caysaysay Church
Our Lady of Caysaysay

Before getting sucked into the rush of the holiday season, I made one last trip. This time to visit the heritage churches of Iloilo and the beaches of Guimaras in central Visayas.

Jaro Cathedral
Jaro Cathedral

I had the chance to visit Miagao church (UNESCO World Heritage Site), the feminist church of St. Anne in Molo, Jaro cathedral, and St. Clements church. (I have yet to post entries for Jaro cathedral and St. Clements)

Morning Facade
St. Clements Church

I saw Guimaras' sunset and sunrise beauty in Villa Igang. We also had the chance to visit SEAFDEC (Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center) and the turtle sanctuary in Nueva Valencia (I hope to post entries for both soon)

Igang Sunset Cave
Igang's sunset cave

So thats it for this year :). I hope to travel more next year. Destinations on my list includes:
  • Batanes (rugged landscapes, northern most)
  • Cam Norte (beaches, eastern)
  • Cam Sur (beaches and waterfalls, eastern)
  • Biri rock formations in Samar (out of this world rock formation, eastern)
  • Tinuy-an falls in Bislig, Surigao (Philippine's version of Niagra falls)
Have a safe and prosperous New Year!
All rights reserved Photos by Allan Barredo unless stated otherwise. No photos or any part of this post may be downloaded and reproduced in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission of the owner. But feel free to share the link using any of the sharing buttons below.
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