Ah, we now reach the final island destination in my Philippine Island-Hopping series. Among all the islands I visited on this trip, Caramoan ( Kara- Mo-Wan) proved to be the most beautiful, and also the most treacherous.
The next coming posts will show you why I describe it so. This is just the first part, and as all stories go, we begin with the pleasantries.
Caramoan is not easiest place to get to. Well, let’s make that precise- Tugawe Cove Resort (review coming up soon), is not the easiest place to get to. Caramoan is in Camarines Sur, Bicol Region in the Philippines. It’s an area that is regularly ravaged by typhoons and floods. And this accounts for the reason why Caramoan has only made it’s name around tourism talks in the past few years. There are a number of ways to get there (though not all convenient).
We took an early morning flight out of Manila to Virac. Then from Virac Airport, we got picked up by a private van (part of the accommodation deal), and got driven around an hour to get to the port. Then from the port we took a 40 minute boat ride to the island where we stayed.
I LOVED the ride to the port. The area is probably the cleanest and lushest provincial area I’ve been to in the Philippines. The air was so fresh and crisp. I haven’t experienced Philippines like this in a long, long time.
By sea, the journey was impressive as well. True we were on board a wooden boat that had our butts numb after 20 minutes but you barely notice it because the waters were really pristine.
And now the ultimate reason why I am writing this post is to tell you of how I fell in love with the waters of Caramoan. There are no touristy gimicks or tours in Caramoan. No frills or islands with fancy names. It’s really just the sun, sea and a group of uninhabited islands. There are no designated popular snorkelling spots. And we happily explored the seas by boat, stopping if anything looked inviting.
I loved the simplicity of it. How our guides (boatmen and a staff from the resort) are so oblivious to the beauty of the place.
The whole place was so unpretentious, I felt like the waters were saying, “We’re quite happy without anyone exploring us, but if you really must….you are welcome to”
And with an invitation like that, off we jumped.
And from hereon, I’ll let the pictures do the talking.
Beneath those royal blue waters lie an entire mega-city of thriving corals and marine life! Definitely the cleanest, clearest waters in the Philippines I’ve ever swam in.
I love that the waters are untouched by tourism, and snorkelling and free-diving is definitely worth every breath held! This would have been a perfect opportunity to dive yet I didn’t see or hear about any dive companies. But that’s perfectly fine. It’s all part of the place being untouched. I tell you, the waters of Caramoan made me want to be a mermaid just so I can explore endlessly. We didn’t want to surface, but we were occasionally stopped by the unpredictable storms in the afternoon. Which we later found out were common in this part of the area.
If you enjoyed this post you might like: The Moody Island Life of Caramoan