November 15, 2006

Memories of Palawan

Shucks!!! It's been more than a month since my last post. Haven't had the time lately. I think my posts'll be coming in trickles in the next couple of months. I've been assigned to sub for my colleague who handles in-process QA. She'll soon be taking off for a maternity leave in December but has already started being in absentia for the last three weeks. So, this beauty has been doing the rounds of Biscuit production for the meantime. Anyway, I'll try to squeeze in some blog time. I know I will.

My friend Queen just got in yesterday from a weekender in Palawan. Suddenly, I miss Gigi, my double sis, ex-housemate and friend from way back in College. She now lives in Puerto Princesa and is a chemist analyzing for levels of contaminants in export fishes and marine products. Wow, heavy... heavy metals ang handle niya ngayon. Hehe, tama ba, GG? Will you be home for Christmas? I heard Bogs will be coming with you. You should take him to LB. You should. Everyone's pretty excited to meet him.

with Gg and Bogs

Palawan has lots of tour-worthy spots.. went there last March with my colleagues at work. Hailed as "the last frontier", it boasts of verdant rainforests and teems with abundant natural resources. See our pics!

inter-island hopping on Honda Bay and Underground River tour ... and at Wildlife Conservation Center

In the whole 3 days that we were there, I couldn't stop myself from marvelling at its unspoiled beauty. Well, save for the mini-patches on some mountains that have been ravaged by kaingeros. "Kaingin" is a Filipino term referring to the slash and burn practice by upland farmers. It is a shifting cultivation system of farming wherein forests are cleared of trees then planted with a particular crop like maize, which will then be burned and replaced with another crop like cassava, then burned again and replaced by still another. And on and on the cycle of shifting cultivation continues. Kaingeros are what we call this type of farmers. And the cleared forests, denuded for a time prior to the next planting, somehow look so barren from afar.

Palawan is the largest province in the Philippines in terms of total land area. Mainland Palawan is a long stretch of island and there are several more little island paradise scattered around. If you want to get from the heart of Puerto Princesa to the different tour sites, you’ll have to schedule separate days for the northern and southern tips. And with plenty other smaller islands to go to, another day for island-hopping will add more fun to your trip. When we went there, we were just able to make the tour of Underground River, Honda Bay islands and city sites. I plan to go back there separately for Coron island and also El Nido plus Calauit island. And maybe someday, too, the World Heritage Site Tubbataha Reef for its ecodiversity— i wish I’d have learned to dive by then.
scenic view of the beach at Sabang

just enjoying ourselves

Palawan sure is a premier tourist destination in the country. It is blessed with rich flora and fauna and virgin forests that would just make you fall in love with it. And what I loved most about the place is its moderately priced foodfare. Oh yeah, foodie lover that I am. Compared to the other places I’ve been to so far, my Palawan trip was the cheapest in terms of food. Well, I mean, I’m talking seafood here- fresh, sumptuous, delectable seafood. My Sagada trip was pretty cheap too, but dining didn’t include seafood so I can’t equally compare it with my other nature jaunts to the south, in the likes of Boracay, Bohol, Cebu, Samar-Leyte and Davao. Sagada I can more liken to a Baguio or a Marawi trip.

Thinking of visiting Palawan?! I'd give you a thumbs-up. I want to go back! Come to think of it, now's a good time for planning trips for next year.

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