Sunday, October 14, 2012

Kwentong Kaladkarin #45: Captivating Coron – Touring the Town Part 1

Da Where: Coron, Palawan, Philippines
Da When: September 9-12, 2012
Da Who: me and Vin to celebrate our golden monthsary. ;D

As I fastened my seat belt inside the ATR-720 (yet again!) plane bringing us to Busuanga, I wiped my clammy hands on my denim shorts and uttered a silent prayer. It's no secret I hate plane rides and though I'm ecstatic to finally see one of my dream destinations, getting on a turbo-prop plane crossing the West Philippine Sea (in your face, China!) is definitely not doing wonders for my aerophobia.

Lovebirds in the air. Pun intended. :D

Nearly an hour later, I forgot all my fears when Vin and I started sighting verdant islets flashing below us, all rimmed with ivory shores and the colors of the sea ranged from navy to cerulean. I kept squeaking in excitement as I craned my neck to see more. This must've been the first time I enjoyed being up in the air! :)

Hello Palawan! :D
Am I giddy already? Hell yeah! ;P
Almost there!

We taxied into a drizzling Francisco B. Reyes Airport and quickly filled out the tourist information sheets handed out by security personnel. We have reserved seats in a service van that will bring us to Coron town proper. It was about 20 minutes of comfy ride through a verdant government-owned ranch that had herds of cows grazing everywhere. The driver was telling us that sometimes trips can be delayed because cows like to hang out in the middle of the road. Okay, that's it. I'm adding an hour travel time for our flight back, just in case. :D

Cow na!
First order of business, checking in to our reserved room at Patrik & Tezz Guesthouse, a backpacker-stay inn I found online. It's rated as Tripadvisor's #1 value-for-money accommodations in Coron and will talk more about in a separate post. :)

Since we arrived in the afternoon, it's a little late to do any island-hopping so we opted to sight-see the town proper instead. We hopped into a tricycle to get out of the rain and started the tour. Being a second-class municipality, don't expect Coron to be all snazzy and upscale.

For the town tour, we visited the St. Augustine Parish church which we just missed the patron fiesta a couple weeks ago (darn!) and Nay  Lita Escarda's Coron Harvest where you can grab all kinds of cashew products for pasalubong. We were planning to come back here before leaving Coron but didn't get to. :(

St. Augustine Church
St. Augustine Church
Coron Harvest. Ask for free samples before buying! ;D

We were supposed to drop by Lualhati Park but the heavens were still pouring buckets so we decided to proceed to the Maquinit Hot Springs and Mangrove Reserve. The way to the springs was a muddy uphill but we were offered glimpses of the refreshing Coron vista plus the dewy, fresh air was making my cold better. A dip in the seawater hot pools (it was friggin' scalding! :D) was just the perfect balm for our tired muscles.

Overlooking the Coron waters.
Mangrove swamp, Vin's worst nightmare. :D
Salty hot springs near the sea
Maquinit Hot Springs

It was already dusk when Kuya Eric's tricycle dropped us off at the guesthouse after a filling turo-turo dinner at Lolo Nonoy's Restaurant.

That night, I was dreaming of flying and scoping out tiny islands with pearly beaches and vast blue seas beneath me as I was drifting off to sleep.

Sweet dreams indeed. :)

Getting captivated yet? Read all about our Coron adventures:

Kwentong Kaladkarin #48: Captivating Coron – Touring the Town Part 2

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