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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Calintaan Island’s Subic Beach in Matnog, Sorsogon

If there was some doubts on the appearance of the sun when we boarded the bus from Legaspi to Sorsogon, it was all exiled to rest as the blue and green waters of the sea regaled in the bright and clear skies. The boat ride was all smooth sailing over the calm waters and as we approached Subic Beach in Calintaan Island, I reckoned to myself "this is just another beach" in my own beautiful country.

Just another beach or so I thought, just like the swam of humanity around us, a person could be just another individual. But deep inside resides a special trait that distinguishes one from another. Therefore, producing varrying kinds of relationships with each other. Visiting a new place always gives that thrilling feeling of anticipation like a foreplay in every lovemaking session.

Same with these places I've been to in the ever moving forward journey of mine. I've rekindled and at the same time developed new relationships and fervor with each part of the land I plant my feet on. Subic Beach is no different yet it conspires an allussion that it is ever unique in its own way. 

First, the geographical location. It is located just outside the island of Luzon and a Herculean's stone throw away from Samar. It is like it is part of rows of avenues and alleyways that provides a gateway to an assorted branches of new destinations.

Second, the sleepy town of Matnog, Sorsogon bristling with seaside activity through the fishing industry and the hustle and bristles of everyday life. The eager conversations about the day's catch and what have's of daily musings of a small town. There is a romantic emblem in there, that signifies a more deeply entombed quality of life masked in simplicity.

Kuya Charlie fetched us from our simple rented nipa hut by the beach at around 7:00AM, not feeling hungry from our previous night's dinner of "daing" and "adobong pusit", we only took a quick bite out of a few Spanish Breads bought from a local bakery. His friend who owns the boat was waiting for us by the port near the market. The main port is where the ferry ships bound for Samar are docked. On the way there, you will pass by an arch that says "You Are Now Leaving the Island of Luzon" - while the thought of crossing to Samar was deeply entertained by myself and my friend Tin, the only thing that held us back was the work that awaits us back home (which is where I am right now).

There is always the next time, especially if you've became one of us who always finds a way to venture out and explore the world around us. That thought excites me and it is I now keep as something to look forward to. Samar, here I come. Someday! However, Subic Beach was the place in hand and the destination that awaits us that morning along with the fishing sanctuary of Juag.

We arrived at Subic Beach around 9:30 AM after spending about less than an hour at Juag Fishing Sanctuary. Tin deliberately left her swimsuit since she's supposed to be on a "beach hiatus" as she said, she'd been traveling extensively also the past few months, as sort of a moving on tool from a break-up and the last she visited was freaking Batanes, which was only last month. So, I took a short dip into the fine crystal clear waters and Tin played the role of a paparazzi taking pictures of myself like I was Jude Law - only with a striking beer belly, that may be justified by a method acting-like preparation for a mobster role in an upcoming movie.

The other side of Subic Beach which takes just a few minute boat ride was more impressive as it has less sea-weeds scattered on the shore. We spent more time on that part staring out at the agonizingly beautiful scenery. Agonizing, because it sucks knowing you will leave the place after only a few hours. I wish I could pitch a tent right there, read a book and enjoy the strong breeze of wind under sunny weather condition and not think about leaving for the next 2-3 days.

The beach is inhabited by a few caretakers, on the other side of Subic Beach where we first docked, we talked to the owner of that part of Calintaan Island. He told us his plans of developing the beach, a part of me wishes he and the other beachfront lot owners would just leave the beach as it is, untouched and with minimum man made structures.

We as travelers, should really learn to make do with what nature offers. Sadly most travelers are the lazy ones, the ones who'd cry about an airconditioned room, a pool room, a beach-side bar. Not every beach could be Boracay, the rest should be left as it is. Barely untouched and suitable only for camping trips. I can only hope that whatever definition of "development" they had in mind - it would be more protective of nature and will only result into minimal man made structures as possible.

Still, I feel lucky that I was able to visit this beach even before any idea of development is put into motion. Shout out to my fellow travel blogger friends Claire and Gael for writing about this earlier in the year. I hope we can all enjoy the beautiful places in our country by nurturing it and making sure it just don't wither away in the wrong kinds of 'development'. I am not only blogging about this place so people would troop there in hordes and help the local tourism, but also as a reminder that we should be responsible travelers as well.

It was nearing lunch time and we were moving at an Amazing Race-like pace. We regretted making the decision to leave the place, but not to be dejected for long, because we were glad to have spent some time exploring that part of the Philippines. Traveling with a new friend in Tin was also a big plus, it was like winning a travel contest and the grand prize was an all inclusive holidays to egypt. Fittingly, it now goes into the "There are places I remember" memory vault of mine, like the Beatles song, its a perfect place to park your mind aimlessly at, especially now that I'm back in the boring corporate world in the big city.


Dee said...

The water looks absolutely lovely!

Anonymous said...

another undiscovered paradise..

tina said...

the beach looks very inviting :)

Malou "Cooks" Nocedo said...

Perfect getaway for the long weekend. I can see that you enjoyed the place. Bicol is really beautiful. You'll never regret going there. People are so warm. I think I haven't told you that I hail from Albay. Just an FYI, I guess. lol

Dee Quixotic said...

it looked uncrowded. so this must be another destination for those looking for quietude.

Chris said...

Every time you post another picture laden entry, it makes me all the more keen to just relocate permanently to the Philippines. My work has an office there. Maybe it's time to request a transfer...

Markyramone said...

@Dee and Tina - yes, and the weather was sunny too, suitable for swimming.

@Chumams (Malou) - yes Tita, sabi nga ni Eric na taga Albay kayo and sabi nya dati kayong taga kampana sa Cagsawa. Totoo ba yun?

@Dee Quixotic - not too crowded yet, Guess its the destination, though its a popular summer destination already among people from all over Bicol

@lloyd - guilty as charge haha...who isn't?

@Chris - yeah, after Seoul, the Philippines is an ideal location for work transfer for you.

Aleah said...

Nice play with colors! What kind of camera do you have?

Markyramone said...

A Nikon D60 but I played around it a bit on photoscape.

Groupdmt said...

Great to know the -- in depth from this blog.This will really help for my forward steps to be taken.
retouche photos

Cathy Sweeney said...

The beach looks wonderful. Great photos. I understand whey you would have liked to pitch a tent there and stay a while. Beautiful place.

Supertikoy said...

looks like mahabang buhangin sa Calaguas island. ang ganda...soon I'll conquer this island! haha

Markyramone said...

@Cathy - hope you include the Philippines in your future destinations. :)

@Jerome - yeah, though Calaguas has finer sands, but still - its worth visiting.

Pinoy Boy Journals said...

i hope to visit this much talked about beach when i fly to Catarman this November. Sana malapit lang! putek, hilig ko pa naman mag-beach, Marky! :)

joan / the backpack chronicles said...

The beach looks inviting. Blue na blue, sana nga mapanatili nila ang kagandahan ng place at hindi masira pag nadevelop na.

Markyramone said...

@Jerik - okay yun ah Catarman - Samar road trip tas balik sa Luzon to Sorsogon.

@Joan - I hope the same too. Yeah blue colored waters always pulls me to swim even though idont know how haha.


would love to see matnog too...

roman leo reyman said...

Must-see when I visit Bicol.

Tin said...

Felt some sort of nostalgia while reading this, did the same trip with a couple friends back in 2009. We also started at Legaspi (but skipped the Mayon tour), camped out at Subic Beach and dropped by Juag Fish Sanctuary.

Continued the trip all the way to Masbate at the Buntod islet, and slept overnight at a hut in the middle of sea. Check it out some time :)

Markyramone said...

wow that was quite a trip @Tin. I would love to do a longer trip that can spread and cover more grounds next time :)

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