Saturday, January 3, 2009

Photo Blog: WOW Philippines Camarines Sur and Albay

This is my photo blog of our recent visit in our hometown Camarines Sur.
Truly distance makes one heart ponder....that is how I describe myself. I spent 19 years of my life (since birth) in Camarines Sur and I just found the places to be ordinary and simple.
After working so hard in metro manila- I realized there is no place like home.....if I can find a similar job in Bicol....I'd like to go home and settle there. Because everything that I am is right there.

Word of caution: I started the photo blog based on the recent photo (so scroll it down and those on the bottom were the oldest shot).

Nice view of Mt Isarog at the Naga City Sports Complex.

MNM decide he'll run too- so I took his D40 to give a good shot of him with the backdrop of the sunrise. Does it merit a good composition?

Tired feet after a short run in Naga City Sports Complex oval.

There were other wonderful places to visit in Albay specifically Legazpi like the Lignon hills, Albay Parks and Wildlife, Huyop-huyopan I've been to this places as a child....those times I have little appreciation of our place....but now I can say I am truly blessed to have this rich heritage. Our Bicol region is truly magayon (maganda in tagalog or beautiful in English). The heavy rains cannot stopped us from going to places.....too much wonderful things too little time. MNM swear we should go back to Albay.

After dropping by Mayon rest house we went to the Cagsawa ruins. We went back to Tabaco and drove to Legazpi City, we took the Legazpi diversion road (we turn right after the Yawa bridge). MNM took shot of the Cagsawa ruins signage and the belfry (the scaffolding is not meant for restoration but to remove the grass that grows on the surface.
Since our Mayon rest house stop- there was no clearing to peek on Mayon Volcano.
We were the rescue is an amateur photographer named Julie (Albay locale) who sold several photo of Mayon Volcano to our friend Roy and Pearl (who were so excited to see the perfect cone shape).
He also took our photo below (its a photo trick, the belfry was seemed viewed from a cave). Photo from left, Pearl, Roy, MNM, Myself, Patchie, Troy, TJ & Matti.

TRIVIA: The cagsawa church is made of limestone rocks, binders were made of volcanic ash, egg white and molasses- you can't see any steel bars on the church remaining structure.

From Naga City to Tiwi Albay took us 3 hrs drive via Sagnay National road. From Tiwi to Mayon Rest house is another 3 hrs (including 30 minutes lunch break). The heavy rains poured as we were driving the long winding road to Mayon rest house. We were all grumpy including the kids who were already sleepy at that time. photos taken but our friend Roy & Pearl surely does. We bought bonsai plants (50 pesos each pot) as souvenir. My last visit to Mayon rest house is probably 20 years back....I remember, that was the day I told myself I wanted to summit Mt Mayon- as a child I can see that the craters is so near and can be summitted from the North side of Mayon. But according to the locales popular trail to the summit is from the Legazpi City side (trekking alongside the lava flow).

The interesting rocks seemed a tip of an iceberg.

Behind this signage is another wonderful view of Gorda Point and Atulayan island....the place is just so serene, so peaceful. We would love to stay on this place if it wasn't raining. Good thing the Sagnay national road have stop points for travellers to enjoy the scenic beauty of the coastal area.
On the photo from left Roy, Patchie, Troy, Pearl, TJ, Myself and Matti.

Below shoot is the Atulayan Island- our 2nd day at Cam Sur is still a rainy. The landscape never ceased to awed us.

We took the Partido road via Sagnay National hiway (pronounced as Sangay) to Mayon rest house. The usual road to Albay is through Pili diversion and back to Maharlika hi-way. Why? Because were bound to the north side of Mayon Volcano and the view of the coastal Sagnay is just breathtaking. There is a Sagnay view deck that gives you the full view of Atulayan Island, Mahalas or Gorda point of Bgy Patitinan and the serenity of the Pacific.

The Consocep trip was a lot of fun- even if it was really rainy in Camarines Sur (and even if my last trip and memory of the place date back 15 years ago). It was a short trip from CWC- elevation is approx 800-1000 MASL. We missed the deer farm, the Japanese tunnel and even the Agta's resettlement area (visiting their village will give any visitor an idea regarding the lifestyle of our Bicolano Agta brothers and sisters).

We were not able to visit the deer farm because of the heavy rain....MNM swear we're going to comeback on our next vacation in CamSur.

MNM Shot of our Friends- Roy, Pearl and her daughter Patchie. They were crossing the river as we prepare to trek back to our car.

Another Small falls just below Tumaguiti falls. According to our guide Manoy Domeng- these area are usually full packed with campers and swimmers during the summer season. I remember we saw a snakes' skin shed (the process is called ecdysis)....I was asking MNM (my hubby) to take a shot of it but he hesitated...because the snake is quite big and could be within the area (Photo Below from left Tj, Me, Matti and MNM).

After our sumptous lunch at the CWC resto, we went to Consocep located at Ocampo Camarines Sur. It is a 30 minutes drive from CWC. Originally, we intend to go to the deer farm for kids to enjoy deer feeding. But because I've been to Consocep like 15 years back (elementary days) I made a mistake in directing MNM & Roy our friend to just continuing driving until the top, my estimate they drove approximately 800-1000 MASL elevation. By the way, Consocep is the jump off point for the patag patag trail in case one is intending to summit Mt Isarog.
When I asked our guide Mang Domeng, he told me that the deer farm is located on the lower ground the small road branching to our right (as we ascend to the top of consocep). So that explain why we all landed on a trekking to the falls.

We were not prepared for the trek- we all are wearing slip on.

Photo below was shot at the Tumaguiti falls....during our trek we bump into these nuns from Dominican Republic....Madre Mia! (I heard them say when one of them skidded into the slippery stairs....MNM quips was it Inaykuppo! in Tagalog? hehehe).
On the photo were the 3 nuns, TJ, Myself, Matti & Troy.

Photo below is MNM shot of me and my daughter Tj, we were trekking to Tumaguiti falls. We were really not prepared for this....but then what the heck! Were here so better have a quick glimpse.
Candid shots of our children at the nearby CWC shore. I am now a believer of telephoto lens- this shot won't be as candid with low lens.

Tigaon's belfry, Parish of St Claire of Assisi - there is a minute life in this shot. I love this. Shot by MNM using his D40.

GOA church- we take a few shots of this church during our short stop at GOA (as we take the road back to Cadlan, Pili to meet our friend in CWC).

MNM' shot of a boat using his D40. I like this shot! There is a framing element.

At my mother's house....I thought the chinese character in the humungous vases were interesting...
TJ was climbing up & down the stairs...I thought the lines from the edges were interesting (leading lines) - would this make a good composition? I shot below photo at 32mm focal length, f4.2, ISO200 using hubby's D40. I take interest in his camera- because I discovered that he got a new lens.

After our 10 hr drive from Cavite we accompanied our family friend to CWC for their overnight accomodation.

Inside the CWC Villa del Rey Cabana- I was glad that the CWC offers a cheaper cost of accommodation (at 1.3K/night).

Viewing Cabana outside- one of CWC accomodation.
We even discovered that the Eco Village (Also located at CWC Cadlan,Pili was even cheaper...lowest rate is 550/night).

As I gazed into this beautiful development of Cadlan Pili ....I was amazed at how progress eased away the Cadlan's connotation decades back...whew! the place was known for its mental hospital! it's a home of the world's famous cable wakeboarding park.

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