Thursday, November 5, 2009

Sorsogon, My Second Hometown

Dagos tabi! a warm and friendly Bikol greeting, meaning, Please come in, you are most welcome!

Warm and straight from the heart, Sorsogon beckons and welcomes you. Sorsogon, one of the six Bikol provinces, and located at the southernmost tip of Luzon the gateway to the South of the Philippines offers the jaded visitor a new experience . . . unexplored and undiscovered, pristine and green vistas, Mother Nature at its best. (
Sorsogon, hometown of my loving wife Cha.  We went home with her 2 sisters Chrisma and Christa. Excited to go home and take advantage of the long weekend.  Left Manila at around 11:30pm, Oct 29.  It was supposed to be earlier but a lot of office work still needs to be done.  I prefer driving off to Bicol at night til early morning, not so much vehicles and traffic.  It usually takes 12 to 14 hours travel time with sightseeing and frequent stopovers.

Our first stop was at the Petron Station in SLEX to buy some snacks. They were saving electricity so they didn't turn on the letter "T".

Second stop at the Total Station in Lucena.  I was surprised there were few travellers that time.  On occassions like this one, this place is full of travellers stopping over. The place was not well lit than usual. We always stop there to drink coffee to keep me going, stretch those tired muscles and weewee. A much well deserved break after around 128km and 2.5 hours travel. That time, I tried Cobra energy drink as they say it is effective.  I tell you, it is really effective.

This is also where I took my first ever moon shot.

Next stop at the Caltex Station in Calauag, Quezon after a total of 237km and more or less 5 hours total travel from Manila.  The Cobra energy drink was really very effective.  I've tried Extra Joss, Coffee, Lipovitan, and Red Bull but nothing worked for me.  Nothing beats Cobra... Usually, I stop there to take a power nap for me to recharge.  However on that day, I'm still wide awake and reflexes still very sharp and active. So we just stopped over to fill up some gas and weewee.

Next stop at Naga after a total of 385km and 8 hours travel time.  We arrived there around 7:30am and had breakfast at Jollibee Naga.  Then we proceeded to CamSur Watersports Complex.

There was a scheduled competition that time so the wakeboarding was exclusive for the participants only.  Too bad I was not able to show off my skills... skills in hitting the water right after take off, haha...  Haven't tried wakeboarding yet so I was really excited that day, maybe next time.  It was also an oppurtunity to shoot the experts but that day was just the opening and registration.  Competition will only start the next day, Oct 31.  So I just shot 2 people wakeboarding.  We then went to the Ecovillage near CWC but nothing much to see there.

Full set of pictures here

We arrived in Sorsogon around 1:00pm and a total of 538km.  We watched the Pantomina sa Tinampo dance at the town proper.  Pantomina, a traditional Bikol dance, is known as a dance of love and courtship actually the dance of the doves or sinalampati (salampati is Bikol for dove), as it was then known before the coming of the Spanish colonizers. The Pantomina, or pantomime, imitates, in dance, the courtship and lovemaking of the doves. But it is only in Sorsogon where this is danced in the streets, or tinampo, by droves of eager dancers wearing colorful native attire, as they cajole and coax tourists and onlookers to join in the fun and merrymaking, partake of tuba, the native coconut wine, and lechon, or roast pig, carried by dancers as they swing and sway and do their love dance down the streets of Sorsogon. (

Full set of pictures here

October 31, Saturday

Everytime we have a vacation in Sorsogon, we see to it that we either go to the beach or just tour around the province.  This time, we went to Rizal Beach and Bulusan Lake.  We had lunch (around 11:30am) at the Rizal beach in Gubat, Sorsogon and of course shoot this beautiful place. We didn't swim as it was too sunny that day (while Metro Manila is being hit hard by Santi) and we just want to hang out with the family.

Full set of pictures here

We then proceeded to Bulusan but passed by Barcelona to say a little prayer at the oldest church in Bicol.

Bulusan Lake is at the heart of the Bulusan Volcano Natural Park.  There are two ways to get here. One is the route we take which is through Gubat, Barcelona, then Bulusan Town. The other way is through Casiguran, Juban, Irosin, then Bulusan Town.  The road here is better than the Gubat route which is because of the damaged pavement.  This is a nice place to relax, beauty of nature... We then went home afterwards.

Full set of pictures here

November 01, Sunday

Visit to Sorsogon is not complete (at least in our case) without visiting the Monastery of Poor Clare.

November 01 moon, awooo...

November 02, Monday

Woke up around 6:00am for us to leave for Manila at around 7:00am.  This is the best time to leave for Manila, or even earlier, so as not to go with the heavy traffic from Lucena all the way to Calamba when passing through the towns of Sariaya, Candelaria, Tiaong, San Pablo, Alaminos, and Sto. Tomas.  We were lucky enough to be in Lucena at around 4:00pm and got home at around XXXX.  It would be a different story if we arrived in Lucena at around 5:00pm-6:00pm.

Mermaid along the beach of Lamon Bay near the maharlika Highway in Atimonan, Quezon.

Candelaria, Quezon sunset.

That's all, hope you can visit the beautiful province of Sorsogon and the Bicol region as well...

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