August 2009
Part II

Driving around Siargao Island

This is a must to get a first impression of the other fantastic spots. Some of these are always worthwhile to come back again and again. We drove clockwise and the first town we passed through was Dapa.

Soon after Dapa you reach a fish farm where you can picnic or just look around or take a dip into the swimming pool (we actually visited this place on our way to the airport when we flew to Cebu at the end of our stay).

Click the small picture to get it enlarged

Nice spot to picnic and swim with the fish
Turtle breeding Turtle eating?
Next stop was in the small town of Carmen in the middle of the mangrove forest. We didn't rent a boat to explore the swamp and look for salt water crocs, which are supposed to swim freely around here, but nobody had seen any lately.
First stop at the town of Carmen Surrounded by mangroves
Typical dwellings on stilts Here everything she sells
One of the basic food and a delicacy: dried fish
Then we could admire the beautiful mangrove landscape from above the road on our way up north.
Mangroves, mangroves you only see they stretch all the way to the sea
Then we stopped at a creek with a path leading to the Tak Tak waterfall. We did get off and walked 10 minutes to get there.
Then finally Tak Tak falls Inviting you for a swim
What I did What I did
After a refreshing swim and dive under the waterfall we continued to the next sight: A lookout from a place which had been occupied by some kind of a religious organization. The guy, a Canadian, we met there didn't explicitly tell which one, but he allowed us to look around: Yes, it was a heavenly place.
Nice beach down there and to a beautiful sea
Viewed from a nice house on top built by some believers in God
There were many more nice beaches around the northern part of the island. We didn't swim there but were looking forward to one of the most interesting places on the island: the Rock Pools close to the town of Pilar.
What' so special about this beach? Ugly coast with rocks lying around
Rough stony beach but nice sea Not inviting for a swim out there
But here: a pool carved into a rocky ground With many more rocks lying around
It is really fantastic now to swim in the clear water
In such a nice place we were not alone
But we didn't dare to jump down
More rocks are scattered around This one looks pretty good
Then we got closer and saw a single rock
Now we were getting hungry. There was a picnic place with huts but we didn't bring our lunch box. I read about a Swiss restaurant just before getting into Pilar, which was the
Lucod Beach Resort
Siargao Island
Tel.: 0919- 8479391
It looked cozy inside but not the outside. Unfortunately the owner was not there. Also no other guests around. We were offered only simple meals with some waiting time to prepare so we declined. On the way back to General Luna we settled down at the Flying Fox where we were spoiled with the best German food around (see description in Part I).

Three Islands Hopping

Another day, another trip, but this time with a boat to visit the three islands you can see in front of General Luna: Pansukian Island or Naked Island, Dako Island and Guyam Island.
Our boat with boatman heading to the Naked Island
Again: since this is not only a travel report but also a personal memory album, you may skip the following beach photos if you don't want to look at Joy mostly standing, sitting or lying in the way.
Getting off the boat But not taking off the clothes
All of this nice island belongs to us alone
Take first some rest and lie down and relax
What kind of a fruit is this? It looks like a dried penis
Let's walk around the island and then let's swim
Swimming close to the beach Out from a shark's reach
Next try Another shark?
Hiding in the sand You want a hand?
Getting out all by herself She doesn't need any help
Rising from a burial ground Exhausted now, lying down
We are "sailing" again to another island now
Its name is Daka Getting closer
It looks nice for another rest
Where are the inhabitants? Cannibals had a feast here?
Or just grilled turkeys or dried squids
Ok, there was no eatery not to mention a restaurant on the island. However you could buy some drinks and chips at a sari-sari store at the fishing village retreated from the beach. There also was some kind of a resort or private house with an adjacent guest cottage, but nobody was around.
There are some houses in the back Nobody there but some art is left
Natural art newly arranged
The next and our last island to visit was the uninhabited Guyam Island, also easily to be seen from our Cherinicole resort. One side has a sandy white beach to swim and snorkel in the crystal clear water and the other side is rocky with some pools to wade and look for small fish. It's also a nice place to picnic on the beach or in one of the huts at the back.
Next : Guyam Island A really idyllic island
But getting around doesn't look that nice
Finally the day arrived when we had to depart and say good-bye to this beautiful island. I hope it will keep its unspoiled charm until we come back some day. But the new airport may lure too many tourists to more and more new resorts, restaurants, etc. and I fear that they may be scattered around uncontrolled by zoning laws with the folks from other parts of the Philippines in tow looking for new businesses.

Right now the cozy airport with their friendly staff was like a family affair: All employees lined up and waved good bye while we were flying up and away.
Our plane Good Bye
From the air we had a last glimpse of the dense and vast mangrove swamps stretching to the sea with the meandering waterways in between, followed by colorful lagoons and a beautiful coast line and small island next to be seen.
Mangroves, magroves Stretching to the sea
Beautiful lagoons and pretty beaches
Aloha Tahiti? No, all Filippi

Ok, that was Surigao. We could have easily stayed longer and done much much more, like diving, fishing, spelunking, etc. Also I could have written more. If you want to know more about the place we have visited then just look up any of the many guidebooks or in the internet.

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