May 22, 2010

I can fly
I can fly

Every since the dawn of civilization, man had been fascinated with flight. We have imagined it, weaved fantasies about it, and with technology, invented countless contraptions and flying machines. But there is no sensation of flight when you are couped up in a flying machine. Other forms like sky diving, hang gliding, base jumping, etc, are simply too prohibitive or inaccessible for common folks. So we went back to basics: a simple line between two elevated points and some secure harness and we've got ourselves several seconds of "flight".

The scenic town of Lake Sebu (a fave place of mine, see Favorite places section of this blog), known for 3 lakes and 7 major waterfalls, is one of the best places to visit in South Cotabato. With the addition of the zip lines (only in its 4th month of operation at the time of writing), things just got even better.

What sets the zip lines in Lake Sebu apart from other zip lines in Mindanao is the scenery you get to see. You won't only see tree tops, you'll get to see waterfalls, river systems, and wild life. In fact the first line is located a few meters downstream from Falls 1 and passes over the drop of the 2nd falls, the highest of the 7 falls in Lake Sebu.

2nd Falls
2nd falls

I was beaming with anticipation the first time I tried it. It was the first time I'll be riding a zip line. My wife, who is strapped beside me, has tried the zip lines a few weeks back and assured me I'm in for an unforgettable ride. I insisted on bringing my camera along, secured using carabiners on the body harness (I also have my camera bag and tripod on my back).

2nd falls drop
first drop (2nd falls)

I could feel the adrenaline rush on the first few seconds on the first zip line (740 meters) as we went over the sheer drop of a cliff. One second you are just a few meters above ground, the next you are 400 meters up in the air. I was frantically pointing my camera every where and shooting in burst mode.

Above the rivers and the trees
high above

Soaring at a top speed of 100-120 kph over a forest canopy and a river system was a sensory overload.  I stopped taking photos after a while (after I realize it was rather pointless, I could not enjoy the ride if I'm on photo snapping mode) and decided to enjoy the few seconds left of my flight.

Falls #4 and #5Zip line mae and mencit
Falls #4 and #5 (left photo), happy flyers (right)

A jolly crew will meet you at the end and even take your photos using your camera if you like. You'll be given a few minutes to recompose yourself and gather your wits before they strap you to a second line (400 meters).

Terminal
approaching the end of the second line

The second line is much lower than the first, its just above the forest canopy. However it still offers a great view of the waterfalls and if you are lucky, you'll see a troop of monkeys at the tree tops.

How to get there
There are daily flights from Manila to General Santos (1.5 hours). From Gensan, take a bus to Koronadal (45 min). Koronadal is the regional hub, so transportation is not a problem. From Koronadal take a bus/van to Surallah (20 minutes). From Surallah there are jeeps/vans/motorcycles going up to Lake Sebu (20 minutes). Hire a motorcycle to take you to Falls #1 where zip line #1 is once you get to Lake Sebu (10 minutes)

Info and Tips
  • Php 250.00 for the two lines. You'll start near Falls #1 and you'll get to see Falls 2-5 during the ride.
  • Its best to ride the zip lines early in the morning. It usually rains around midday (its surrounded by a rain forest after all) and the zip line operations stop if it rains.
  • There are motorcycles at the end of line #2 that can take you back up to Falls #1 (10 pesos/pax). You can also hike down to Falls #2 where they have a Tourism center.
  • To truly enjoy the ride, leave your camera behind.

Updates 2011/12/28
They really made it more efficient this time. Gearing up (putting on the harness) is much quicker than the last time I was there. They used to take your photos using your cameras, but not now. They have ready photogs at the end of the line to take your souvenir shots and they have a printing booth. This made "zipping" much quicker since they don't have to ask for your camera, then push you back a few meters to take your photos.  The lines have been busy, with riders zipping by every few seconds. 

There lots of stores now at the end of the 2nd line, selling souvenirs, food, and whatnot. Its as touristy as Lake Sebu can get! Its a big business.

More Falls
In the mood for a trek? There's actually more"hidden views" on the zip line grounds, like Lake Sebu's Falls #5 (Hikong Kefo-I).

Hikong Kefo-I

Of the 7 falls in Lake Sebu, only Hikong Alu (#1) and Hikong Bente (#2) are easily photographed. Both are so accessible nowadays they have probably been shot a million times already. The rest, however, are rarely photographed up close.

Falls #4 and #5 are usually just photographed from above (while riding the zip line) or from a safe and far vantage point. I braved the rain and slippery trail one afternoon. Climbed over and under fallen trees, scampered down slippery rocks, and got everything I had soggy wet, just to get as close as possible to this beauty. Kept asking our guide "can I go down there?". A friend who accompanied me played it safe and did not bother with the "risky shots".
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68 comments:

  1. i wanna try this. i've done ziplines before but they said, this zipline is the coolest!

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  2. sobrang ganda bai! whoa! parang gusto ko na kaagad lumipad sa gensan. looks like it's gonna get the title for the best zipline.

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  3. It seems like it is scary. Maybe I should practice first on Tagaytay's Picnic Grove zip line before trying the zip line here.

    Still, the view is beautiful.

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  4. Nice!!!! Someday, I will also fly!

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  5. What an exciting adventure! Something I've wanted to try. The pics give an awesome perspective. I almost feel like I was there.

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  6. I want to go there, and it's urgent, I must try this!

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  7. Wow! That certainly looks better than the other ziplines I've tried.

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  8. this is sooo green...love it!

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  9. makatatapak rin ako one of these days ng lake sebu at masubukan ang zip line na yan. :D

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  10. "To truly enjoy the ride, leave your camera behind'

    -I have to agree 100% on this one. Last week, I multitasked by being too overly cautious with the camera I was holding while trying to absorb the spectacular views around me. Someone in our group even saw monkeys jumping from one treetop to another.

    It would perhaps be best to try the rides twice - one for documentation purposes and the other would be for a superman-ish rush.

    I would say that the 7Falls zip offered the best view by far. Every other ride I have tried elsewhere surprisingly paled in comparison.

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  11. This is simply amazing. You rock my world. Shukran "Thanks" for the info.

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  12. Wooh nice adveture and pictures...
    Aerial shot ka ngayon sir, ano next...?
    I like that zip line... mataas na, marami pang waterfalls.

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  13. @lantaw: We went but unfortunately arrived late, and there were a lot in line already. we will be back for the zip!

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  14. wow! truly amazing! my friends and i are planning to visit this place sometime soon. ^_^

    you have nice shots out there! cool. *_*

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  15. Wow! Adventure to the max. Truly amazing! My friends and I are planning to visit this place. ^_^

    you have nice shots out there! ^_^

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  16. Tried it with my girlfriend last weekend;it was great and the view fantastic,even though my g/f wouldn`t open her eyes!

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  17. This is a one of a kind zip lines! Flying above 7 falls is a very great experience. I used to stay in Cotabato but didn't have a chance of getting near Lake Sebu! Anyway, thanks for this one. I'll make sure that next time, I'll visit this place! :)

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  18. I have tried zip line before and I must say it is one of the most enjoyable experience ever. As an adventure seeker, I am pleased with the thrill that it gave me.

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  19. i want to try this next week!!

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  20. this will be our next outdoor adventure.. kinda excited nah!!

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  21. maganda mag adventure ngaun sem.break.pwd ba mag overnyt dyan.Ill bring my 4 kids too.

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  22. @florafe, yes pwde mag overnight, lots of resorts in Lake Sebu

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  23. all i can say is 'WOW'! compared to other zip lines, this one is d best!!!! YEEEH! >:D

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  24. the best zep line entire the country ever... pag mka try ka n gusto u blik blikan... best exprience ever...

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  25. I also saw lake sebu when someone posted it on FB. Maswerte siya kasi na-capture nya na may rainbow sa falls. Ang galing. Praktisin ko na ang adrenalin rush sa Bukidnon. Gusto ko din ma-experience to. Natutuwa ako sa mga post mo. Parang tipong pag sinumpong ka at gusto mo mag unwind, kahit 1 day lang marami ka ng magagawa sa lugar kung san ka nandun. love it!

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  26. @kura, the rainbow appears every 3-4PM on sunny days :)

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  27. just recently, i've tried that zipline in lake sebu.. truly amazing! u have to try it guys, it's a very beautiful experience... :)

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  28. do we have to make a reservation?..

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  29. its my first zip line ever,and the experienced was really amazing. at first kala ko mamamatay na ako, pero pag nasa kalagitnaan na, sobrang sarap ng feeling. sarap palang lumipad. :)

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  30. wow!ganda i want to go there...kailan pa kaya?????????-


    by:fritz ann of polomolok

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  31. u have really nice pics!! lake sebu is in our plan for another adventure... =) we want to try their ziplines too...i've tried zipline before at camp sabros, but wants to try this one also...

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  32. ie tried it just the other day! and its really scary at first..ganda talaga..wanna do iut again!

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  33. i tried the one in dahilayan manolo fortich ZIPZONE, i shuld try this

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  34. Try to visit the zip line of Lake Sebu, Cotabato... at first you feel you're in a Galleon ship... the next thing, you feel "heaven" when you're in between the ride... much more when your with your husband, best friend or even crush...:)

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  35. very informative blog, thank you..

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  36. an exhilirating experience...the lake sebu zipline leaves you breathless and awed all at the same time.my hubby and i tried it out last easter sunday of 2011 and it was such a revelation of God`s majestic creation and man`s continuous thirst to conquer it.

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  37. subrang ganda talaga,

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  38. Thanks for liking our place here in South Cotabato. Fyi, P350.00 na po ang payment for the zipline as agreed by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan pero sulit na sulit naman po:-)

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  39. Fay, we were there last June 4, 2011 and the Zipline fee was still php250. To those who have not tried it, go and try. Super ganda talaga. Also, try their ice cream in Banga(?). masarap din.

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  40. the best ride ever...!!! awesome...and i want to do it again ... wheeeeeee....

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  41. also try gensan's 5th mountain zipline at b'lakayo adventure park in brgy. olympog, gensan.. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hy13ke9q9jU

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  42. Galing ng blog allan, sana matulog kami sa August !

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  43. good eve poh pwede mag tanong magkano poh ang bayad sa falls

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  44. hi, can we go down to the falls to experience the place ? thanks

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  45. even im a student,
    Hopefully i experience that 2, its amazing!
    all u can say if ur In the ride is WOW!!!
    forget ur problems!
    its like a DRUG that u will be addicted,
    i will publish it 2 my blog :)
    want 2 see?
    http://laagna.blogspot.com/
    Tnx for the idea! im a filipino also, From polomolok near in lake sebu!

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  46. of all the ziplines that i have tried..this is the best..its bcoz of the amazing view down below..and i have done it twice in a day..first i get busy taking videos and then on the second i just enjoy the view...i'm from pagadian city, its 6 hours travel by land plus 1 hour standby n the middle of nowhere dahil na sira ang van..ok lang sulit ang view..

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  47. When you visit Lake Sebu, come and visit the Nadine's Lake Resort.

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  48. The Lake Sebu Zip Line is truly an adventure of a lifetime. My ex-pat boss was so impressed after he tried flying in there. He even compared that with the zip line in Hawaii! I've captured the moments there in my blog: www.aethanosocopy.blogspot.com

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  49. im so excited,, to try this zipline

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  50. I tried tagaytay zipline........... for me lake sebu zipline is the best. You feel in heaven

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  51. for those who wanted to try, kahapon lang kakazipline namin entrance is 20 and the zipline is still 250 magdala lang kayo ng usb nyo if you wanted to take a picture from the other side meron kumukuha doon 150 yong hard at soft copy

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  52. i cant wait to try it this week,..weeehhh :D

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  53. nice shots......cool...

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  54. I must say, it is the best zip line in the Philippines! I recommend that you go there to experience how great and therapeutic nature could be! It really feels great to fly there!!!

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  55. Ang ganda mong kumuha ng shots! thumbs up, galing galing!!

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  56. i've tried the ziplines in dahilayan nature park,bukidnon..but it's not high as this one- i REALLY want to try this! hmmm...kelan kaya?

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  57. @judy, its a must try when you are in SOCSARGEN area. You really must visit Lake Sebu one of these days.

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  58. When I tried this ride, it makes me feel like I'm Wonder Woman flying up in the sky... The experience was worth it considering the beautiful scenery... ^_^

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  59. When I tried this ride, it makes me feel like I'm Wonder Woman flying up in the sky... The experience was worth it considering the beautiful scenery... ^_^

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  60. i really want to go real soon...tamang tama meron pang promo cebu pacific P1.43 base fare...so who's gonna go with me?

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  61. wowwww...galing! i want to visit thisn place and fly..whipeee! do we need to have reservation?

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  62. wowww...galing! iwant to visit this place and fly...whipeee! do we need reservation? :)

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  63. I was there last April 2012,It was really amazing and fantastic views especially falls no.2 too high thanks God for creating such wonderful nature.I was born on that province but it was first i visisted that place.Unfortunately I was not able to ride the zipline naunahan ako ng takot at nerbiyos but be sure next time di na kita palalampasin.

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  64. I've tried this few hours ago and it was an unforgettable and humbling experience. I was expecting to scream my lungs off out of me but I didn't. I was in awe to witness the majestic views!

    I'm truly coming back to do it again.

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  65. this zipline is 7000+ ft. above the ground and it is very adventurous :) i'm from koronadal city. :)
    dati kaming may business sa lake sebu at ang mga zip line keeper mga kaibigan ko :)

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  66. i'm duper excited.. will be visiting this beautiful wonder next week :)

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