The White Lighthouse at Apo Reef

This lighthouse was first erected in Bajo Apo island in Apo Reef Natural Park in 1903 as part of the Maritime Lighting Plan of Spain. The design planning of the original section first began in 1896. The construction of the lighthouse itself was halted momentarily during the eruption of the Philippine Revolution and the Spanish-American war and before being finished later on by both the Americans and Filipinos. The lighthouse started warning incoming ships of the shallow reefs surrounding the Atoll when it first lit up in 1906.

Sophie Gianan

The original tower featuring an iron skeletal tower was the highest at the time standing a towering 118 feet. The present day lighthouse stands 110 feet with solar panels that collects natural electricity which the few inhabitants of Apo Reef (members of the Philippine Rangers) uses during nighttime. The white lighthouse stands on the right side when approaching from a boat coming from Sablayan, Occidental Mindoro.

Heidi Manabat

The view deck is perched halfway up the lighthouse tower. Standing on the deck gifts you with a wonderful view of the surrounding island and the thick mangrove forest where we came from on our way to the lighthouse.

Marianne Londres

Along with travel blogger friends, Marcos, Gael and Dawin we spent more than an hour on the view deck just enjoying the cool breeze blowing from the whole Mindoro Strait. The 360-degree view was addicting that we end up sitting around the deck looking at every direction and snapping photographs once in a while.

Marky Ramone Go

The Apo Reef, said to be under consideration to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the near future, is a popular scuba diving destination. It was a downer that the four of us came without any diving experiences but that did not deterred us from enjoying the other highlights of what Apo Reef has to offer.

Marky Ramone Go with Gael Hilotin, Marcos Caratao and Darwin Cayetano

Looking far ahead, you can spot the Calamian group of Islands in Coron, Palawan - must be another 5-6 hour boat ride away. As the sun almost sets in the horizon and the sky slowly faded from blue to red, an awesome feeling sort of a 'somber acid trip' reigned over me. Suddenly, I felt an afternoon like this should be experienced more often in my coming days. 

Scenic sights in Apo Reef

From the doldrums of a steady, uneasy and almost boring life behind a cubicle in the towering landscape of big city like Makati to the unassuming, laid back and paradise-like setting of Apo Reef. I experienced traveling as more than the mere movement of my feet to another direction. There's this feeling of satisfying newness every time I travel.

Marky Ramone Go

It was moments before darkness crept in when we decided to go down the steep steel stairs of the lighthouse. It was another one of those satisfying moment that beats injecting chemicals into my vein–not that I experienced it to make a comparison. The wanderlust apex I felt is like an organic feeling of being high, of discovering a new place and seeing images that will remain solidly in my head. 

Sophie Gianan

There's always a feeling of isolation that goes with lighthouses. Standing on the edge of a small island, it sees afar deep into the ocean trying to connect and send messages to incoming ships that  come and go. It is a fitting reflection of an ordinary mortal who lives side by side with his fellowmen and whose random actions always send a messages across. For good or for ill, you can only hope there will be no lost in translations in between to avoid leading others to a dangerous shallow reef that'll cause ships to sink.

Monique Tendencia

A lighthouse and a ship captain does not go through all that trouble–thanks to lighthouses that blink its lights and sends messages as clear as crystal. If only life can be that uncomplicated, tidy, unhinged from outside distortions. There wont be any ill-communication happening around us.

"The old tree brooded over me silently, a living thing. I heard a mouse snoring in the garden weeds" (The Dharma Bums - Jack Kerouac)

Such a perfect place to smoke some weed and just get high with life and wonder about the promise of the next place and so on and on and on...