It has always been my constant dream to travel, travel, travel but I never knew I would fulfill it so soon. As in 2014, at 21 years old. But because I wanted to be courageous and be a risk-taker for once, I went out to the world and first destination: Siargao!
Work buddy and now travel bestie, Anna, is the more outgoing type between the two of us and when I told her, “Let’s travel!” She was like, “Finally you’ve seen the light, my friend!” Hahaha. She said she was only waiting for me and I was like, “Why didn’t you tell me sooner? x_x”
So, we were all sneaky at work, researching on where to go. And yeah, we decided on Siargao. Duh. And leave from work for a week! Heaven >:))))
First off, from Cagayan de Oro, you have to ride a bus to Butuan City, then another one going to Surigao City. I tell you, it’s so draining! We were, like, “Let’s go back home~” Lol. But srsly, it’s not comfy at all sitting on your butt for almost a day. We left CDO at 10 AM, May 20, and we arrived at Butuan at around 3 PM. Then Surigao, maybe 7 or 8 PM? You see?! So, tip for those who want to go to Siargao, if you’re lazy and if you’re not on a budget (as in you’re rich, hahaha), there are direct flights from Cebu to Siargao. Which Anna and I plan to do the next time we go there, because yes, we’re going back!!! Hihi.
We had to stay the night in Surigao because the boat trip going to Siargao is only at 5 AM and 10 AM/12 NN. We stayed at this hotel (I forgot the name, let me look for that) in their 700 php-worth room. Since there were three of us (Anna brought her lovelife, Phil. Poor me huhuhu lol), we spent more or less 233 php each. It was a decent room, air-conditioned and has its own TV. I’m not really picky, so I didn’t notice anything bad but apparently, Anna and Phil said the water from the CR had an odd smell and that they could hear what the next door people were doing (and that, I will leave to your imagination. Hahaha!) I was dead tired, so I couldn’t care less. It was my first traveling episode and I didn’t think it would exhaust all of me. Whaaaat?! 😄
Fast forward, next day, woke up so early, around 3 AM. The hotel was near the port but we were advised by the hotel staff to go there early because seats are limited and boat might leave if seats are full. Of course we must make sure, so off we went. We wrote down our names and we were almost at the end of the passenger list. Whew, thank God we made it :))
Boat was cramped, if I must complain. I paid 250 php for this, damn it! Honestly, I was just so tired then. Slept some more. Oh, and we talked with some passengers, and they said there was a low pressure area in Surigao that time. That scared us for quite a bit because hello, we’re in the middle of the ocean and you tell us this news?! To further up the tension, it started raining, albeit light. So I suggest you check the weather conditions just to assure your dear selves that you’re gonna be safe. Haha!
Imma break this down. Siargao…
So, arrived at Dapa Port, Siargao. FINALLY!!!! We didn’t book anywhere beforehand but we’ve already researched possible places to stay in, and so, we decided on Jadestar Lodge. But we met this kuya habal-habal driver, and he said we shouldn’t stay at Jadestar Lodge because it’s in General Luna and it’s quite a distance from the surfing place, which is Cloud 9.
Habal-habal fare from Dapa to Cloud 9 cost us 300 php. Kuya brought us to Ocean 303 Resort located in Cloud 9 and we had the 1050 php per night room. I think it was a 750 php room for two people but we had to pay for the extra mattress and stuff for our third person. Oh, and on the way to Cloud 9, kuya did all his sales talk and he offered to give us a land tour for Magpupungko Beach, Tak Tak Falls, among others for 1,500 php.
We said deal. So, after settling our stuff, we changed to our summer outfits and off we went~~~
We had breakfast first, went around a bit, took pictures then went to Magpupungko Beach Resort. But since low tide is still around 2PM, which is when the water’s beauty supposedly comes out, we left and I don’t know, we assumed we were going to Tak-Tak Falls but we never did. Lol. Kuya was so talkative and I think that was his tactic. Joke 😛 He brought us to other cool places though. And I don’t know the names or do they even have names? Spare me and enjoy the photos （＾ｖ＾）
And we also went inside a cave! It was so scary yet exciting, I tell you. Our athleticism was put to the test. Hoho.
Then back to Magpupungko. Congratulate me for the debut of my bikini-clad body!!!!!
We decided to go island hopping: Naked, Guyam, and Daku islands. We spent 1,500 php for that, and because I couldn’t swim to save my life, I had to rent a life jacket for 60 php. We also rented snorkeling gear for 150 php.
First 3 photos, Naked Island (my favorite, even though it’s like the reason I got burnt because well, it’s naked. No shade! Hurrr) 4th&5th, Guyam Island. 6th, me snorkeling in the middle of the verrrrry salty sea (private joke, sorry :P). No outstanding photo of Daku Island (and because I was quite sulky there, hihi).
Last day! I suggested biking, but under the scorching heat and with no breakfast yet (’cause we’re so inot we only have brunch lol), I ended up almost passing out on the road. And Anna didn’t even believe me. She thought I was just playing her -_- I even proceeded to lay down on the grass by the roadside and people who passed by kept looking, some even laughed. Rude. Kk. I was just like, “I don’t care. I don’t even know anyone here.” Hahaha, confidence! I’m thankful though that Anna and Phil were understanding and kept with my pace. Epic fail because I recommended biking, yeah? (ᗒᗜᗕ)՛̵̖
This I will never forget. *sigh of happiness*
I mean, I wasn’t planning on surfing because (1) I don’t have money. Hahaha. (2) I don’t think I’m sporty and fit enough to surf and (3) I can’t swim. So, yeah. Anna really wanted to surf, so I was just there, watching her and all the other people who also wanted to learn. But when Anna successfully stood on the surfboard and all, I was so envious!!! And maybe my Capricorn instincts just kicked in, like, “I can do that! Why can’t I?” Kkkkk. So, after Anna was done, I told her to tell kuya instructor if I can try for even a little while. Kuya gave the thumbs up and, so I was there on my stomach, giddy and nervous and feeling heavy. Haha. But long story short, I DID IT!!!!!! I’m so proud of myself. Just proves you can do anything if you set your mind to it (o‿∩)
That’s it, I guess. I–we had a blast. It was nice to be far away and free from the city buzz, most especially work! And to bond with Anna, and to have a new friend, Phil, as well. Oh, me turning sappy nowww
P.S. Additional tips:
- Siargao only has two ATMs and it’s in Dapa, so better have cash on hand. We even experienced the horror that the ATMs were both offline. Hassle!
- From Cloud 9 to Dapa, or General Luna to Dapa, it’s cheaper to ride the motorela than the habal-habal. The latter charges around 200+ and like the motorela, around 20 or 30? Such big difference. But if you’re in a hurry, habal-habal is for you.
- Their souvenirs are so expensive, I cannot even… A keychain for 60php–I’m speechless. So, I hadn’t bought any memorabilia. (Sand and shells are free, though lol)
These are what I remember for now. So, anyone going to Siargao, I hope I had been of service to you. Haha. Enjoyyy because I diddd ♬ ♡