Bicol, I found myself in Camarines Norte, the gateway to Bicolandia.
Thursday, March 1, 2012
I joined a chartered bus of the Photography Roadtrippers who were also on their way to Camarines Norte. We left Cubao at about 8 p.m. and found ourselves in the town of Paracale, Camarines Norte early the next morning.
Paracale is one of the three possible jump-off points for the Calaguas Group of Islands. The other two are Vinzons (most of the islands are part of Vinzons) and Daet. But I was told Paracale is the closest.
The boat ride from Paracale is usually an hour and thirty minutes. But today, the waves were a bit rough. And we also had to deal with some wind and rain on the way. As a result, the really bumpy ride took close to three hours. But that's to be expected given that Calaguas is already in the Pacific Ocean.
There are several islands which form the Calguas Group. And our destination was Mahabang Buhangin Beach in Tinaga Island, the largest of the Calaguas Islands. The view of the white sand beach and aquamarine blue water as we approached Mahabang Buhangin erased all the discomfort I had to deal with while on the boat. It was paradise!
After a sumptuous lunch, the only afternoon option was siesta time. It was too hot to get anything done (plus the weather was very unpredictable, from really hot to strong rain showers at times), and with no electricity, mobile phone signal, much less Internet access, there really nothing much to do except enjoy the scenery and be one with nature. It's been quite a while since I've spent hours doing nothing. And that was fun!
Saturday, March 2, 2012
We were up quite early. But after breakfast, I went back to sleep as others in the group took more photos. I really enjoyed the much needed rest I had in Calaguas. We were supposed to go island-hopping to visit the other islands. But since we were running late, we had to rush back to Paracale. Thank God the water was calmer than the day before and the weather much better. So we made it back in less than two hours.
Visit the Ivan About Town FB page for more photos of Camarines Norte. Thank you very much to Camarines Norte Governor Edgardo A. Tallado and the Camarines Norte Tourism Office for inviting me to visit their beautiful province.
Camarines Norte Tourism Office
Provincial Capitol, Daet, Camarines Norte
Tel. No. +63 (52) 7213087 / Fax No. +63 (52) 4402013