April 24, 2017

Puerto Princesa: Firefly Watching and Underground River Tour

Our city tour was really tiring but we didn't have a choice but to book our firefly watching tour that night because there's no more time. We have agreed to be picked up at the hotel at 7 pm because our schedule for the firefly watching was at 9 pm and the travel time is 45 minutes. Our city tour guide Kuya Bert was not feeling well that time so we were assigned to another driver, Kuya Nelson. The road to Iwahig Firefly watching was dark and there were many trees on the side of the road. I wanted to ask our driver to stop so I could take pictures of those big trees but I was little scared. LOL! 

Iwahig Firely watching was the highlight of our stay in Puerto Princesa, Palawan. We were so close to nature and away from technology even for a short period of time. I brought my camera with me just hoping I could get a shot but I failed, so we just savored the moment. We had a fun time with Kuya Anton our boatman. He was quiet at first but when my husband started telling jokes, he started telling his as well. Not only we saw wonderful fireflies and how they responded to certain color of lights but we also had a short lecture on the solar system particularly constellations, but there's more! Kuya Anton told us that the river is full of plankton so my husband tried to soak his hand and there, the plankton showed up! Spectacular experience! 

We had dinner with our driver after our tour. Since the night was still young, we decided to have a drink before going back to the hotel. It's just heartwarming to have a full interaction with one of the locals of Puerto Princesa, there,we have heard authentic stories about the place. 

The next day was our schedule to Puerto Princesa Underground River. With the amount of beer I had that night, I was able to sleep tight and be fully energized for the next day's long trip. It's two hours away from the city by car. Our tour consisted of 11 tourists. Our tour guide Kuya Marlo was awesome! He made the long trip more exciting!

We had our stop over to have some snacks, use the rest room and also to stretch. The stop over was just picture perfect! 

We hit the road again after 30 minutes of stop. While on the road, Kuya Marlo gave us a lot of information about the mountains and caves that we passed by. We also had our stop at one of the tourist attractions on the road to underground river which is the Ugong cave. There, we climbed the cave which is a seventy-five-foot limestone formation. I have fear of heights but with Kuya Marlo's encouragement, I tried it! It was one of my heart-wrenching experience! 

 Kuya Marlo loves taking pictures with my camera so every time there's a chance, he would say, "Let's take a picture" LOL

It is called ugong gave because when you tap the cave's entrance, it will make a roar-like sound.

 With proper equipment, gloves and helmet, we were good to go up. As I have mentioned on my earlier post, we needed to use gloves to prevent contamination of the cave.

The above photos are just one examples of rock formation. Sorry I'm not good at taking those. Huhu!

Our tour guides never cease to ask us to pause for a photo! They are just so welcoming and they want us to experience the best of it!

After braving the cave, there we are at the top with that spectacular view! Those three ladies were part of our tour group. Pardon me but I forgot their names,I'm so bad at remembering names, however we had a very nice tour with them. After this we rolled again to underground river. It's near as we can already feel the sea breeze. 

Upon arrival, we had our lunch before heading to the cave. It's a buffet and yeah, sea foods every where were inclusive in the tour fee. I was hungry so I forgot to take photos, haha! I want to eat a lot but I tried my best to control because I know there aren't rest rooms near the cave and based on blogs I have read, the waiting time to get in the small boat going inside the cave is long.  

After eating lunch, we were dropped off near the seashore and there we waited for our boat to bring us close to the cave. 

There were so many tourists and we have to wait for our turn. While waiting, we fed fish near the cave. 

I looked like I don't know already but that's fine, it's part of the adventure. When you get off the boat, you will see this, we have to walk to reach the entrance of the cave, there, we waited for a smaller boat to get us in the cave.

This is just one of the view you can see while on the boat to underground river. 

The two pictures above were taken while waiting for our turn. I had my camera covered with underwater pouch, I was expecting a bad quality but then it turned out good! Yey!

 The above pictures were taken while we were on the small boat going inside the cave.

This is the cave's entrance. My camera once again failed to get photos inside as it is too dark. I was crazy not bringing my external flash with me. Well, what I saw in the cave stays in the cave for now but I will go back there armed with proper photography equipment! That is a promise I made myself. LOL!

There were monkeys near the cave and we saw them when we were going back to the shore. We were warned to be vigilant because they are wild and they snatch your things so I was scared to stay longer and take a good shot, I did it quickly and that's the outcome! Tsk! One of the locals said "Our snatchers and pickpockets here are monkeys!"

Over all, Puerto Princesa, Palawan gave us something we can share to those who haven't been there and to those who plan to go there. It made me more thankful I was born in the Philippines and live here. Our country has a lot to offer only if we know how to take care of them.  I just hope the cave won't be destroyed by nature itself.

If you plan a trip there, you can contact these people. They will surely help you. 

Kuya Bert: +63946 475 3926
Kuya Nelson: +63909 089 7157

Until our next trip! Next in line if the universe will be good to us, El Nido and Coron, Palawan!

No comments: