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Discovering Coron

  

When we went to Puerto Princesa Palawan (please see link puerto-princesa-palawan-march-2011 and i was there at puerto-princesa underground river) last year (2011) we were amazed by what we saw and promised ourselves that we should also see the other side of Palawan which is Coron Islands. According to wikipedia Coron Island is one of the Islands of Calamian group, the other islands are Busuanga, Culion & Calauit. Busuanga Island is the host of the largest city also named Coron. Culion Islands was known to be the host to a leper colony.  Calauit Island host an number of endangered African animal species while Colon Islands is known for having the cleanest inland body of water in the Philippines.


According to our tour guide the named Coron came from the word "colon" which is the famous clay pot abundantly used by the tagbanua (natives) for cooking food.  The islands was used to be called colon but later became Coron.


Last March Cebu Pacific had another cheap ticket sale, our friend Jenny immediately booked us for a trip to Coron on July 2012.  Good thing life at work was quite busy so waiting for July was not so agonizing :)

Two days before our scheduled flight, Jenny informed us that they (she and her husband) cannot make the trip because of a very important business to attend to.  I began to worry upon learning this because we have not booked for accommodations & tour package yet.  I immediately called and asked a friend's travel agent to do the booking, but didn't accept even if I was willing to pay higher than the regular rate.  He said , getting confirmation will be hard in that short of a time. He instead gave me names of  hotels in Coron and assured me not to worry because its easy to find a place to stay in Coron.  Still I was worried.  Then I asked my travel companion Dave to search the internet for cheap accommodations and tour packages in Coron.  Luckily he found a tour agency CALAMIAN ISLANDS TRAVEL & TOURS and called their office in Coron.  Though so short a time, Vanessa (one of the staff) entertained our concern and took our reservations.  She advised us to pay at a bank and when we did she immediately sent the confirmation and the voucher.


ARRIVAL : July 18, 2012

The staff of Coron Islands Travel & Tours met us at the arrival area of Busuanga Airport.  The welcome was very warm and she even gave us a welcome lei made of shells with a piece of capiz pendant.  After presenting our voucher we were then led to a van that will take us to our accommodations. We (me, Dave, Wilven & Robert) are so excited because finally we made it in Coron. The ride from the airport to Coron City is 45 minutes.  While we were cruising the road the van driver informed us of our afternoon itinerary. He told us that we can still rest for an hour at the hotel before they fetch us for the Coron Town Tour at 4:00 pm.

@ Busuanga Airport me, Dave & Robert


CORON TOWN TOUR (Day 1 - half day tour upon arrival)

Coron Town Tour is all about familiarizing the place.  The town proper is really small, restaurants, souvenir shops and the market is just walking distance from our hotel. The van arrived on time but the driver told us to stay because he will be fetching guest from Divers Link which is located in an island near Coron Town.  The van came back a few minutes later and we found out that the guest was not there. Che, our tour guide said that they didn't arrive or maybe just late and so we have to proceed without them. We then went to another hotel to pick another guest.

The lady was Violy and she had no companion.  When we were introduced to her Dave ask if she is a blogger, and Violy answered yes and how did we know?  The answer was simply most ladies who travels alone are either a blogger or brokenhearted and she doesn't looked like the latter :)

You can visit Violy's blog at Vivis Random Ramblings

@ Lualhati Park from L-R Wilven, Ricky, Violy, Dave & Robert
Our Coron Town Tour started at Lualhati Park (named after the mayor & governor's mother) located at the reclaimed area of Coron commonly known as the Boulevard or Coron Harbour Center.  Aside from being the docking area of tourist & transport banca (motorized boat), it is also the location of many business establishments like their new public market, a new hotel, restaurant, souvenir shop & inland transport station. Coron Tourism Center is also located in the area where at the side of the building you can find stalls selling cheap souvenir t-shirts.  


After going around the town of Coron, passing through their famous landmarks like the Municipal Hall, Coron Town Plaza, Coron Souvenir & Gift Shop, Che our tour guide brought us to Mt. Tapyas to do the 700 plus steps trekking. Going up was not really hard and it wasn't easy either.


The steps are concrete with several covered platforms for water stop & rest. Che said that, during holy week, devoted catholics use the place for the "way of the cross". Well it surely is the best place to do the annual religious practices of sacrifice & penitence.

A view from Mt Tapyas the 700 plus steps trek

As we slowly climb Mt. Tapyas, little by little we saw the aerial view of the town of Coron and its nearby islands. The view never stopped changing as we go higher, though how tiring the climb was, the experience was just overwhelming. A few minutes later we reached the summit where the wide view deck was located.



The view at Mt. Tapyas summit was breathtaking. Standing at the center of the mountain is a big steel cross.  Infront we can see the whole town and the islands while at the back was the mountain side where the forest seemed to remain undisturbed.
The Cross at Mt Tapyas Summit


After exploring the mountain and some photo taking we decided to move down.  While we were descending, our tour guide Che got a call from the van driver informing her that the ladies from Diver's Link was already at Mt. Tapyas to do the trek.  Hmmmm finally they're here he he he he . . . . . We waited for then quite a while and when they were done we all went to the van and proceeded to the next destination which was Maquinit Hot Spring.

@ Maquinit Hotspring
From L-R Me, Dave, Wilven & Robert while sitting from L-R are May Ann, Leny,  Miswell & Violy 

It was already dark & raining hard when we reached Maquinit Hot Spring. Cold rain and tired legs made us craving for a relaxing activity and this one was it. There are few tourist around, we looked for a place to leave our things then went to the pool. I know the danger of diving immediately in a hot spring. It may sometimes cause your blood pressure to go high and some may have cardiac arrest. So I advised my companions that we should start by soaking our feet first until we are comfortable with the temperature and slowly move our way down until our bodies are already deep in the spring. It took a while before the rain stopped and gave us a chance to take some photos. We stayed there for about a hour. Dipping in a hot spring is an invigorating experience after a tiresome activities  

What can I say ........ IT'S MORE FUN IN CORON
Trip Budget

Plane Fare : . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  P4,877.84
Davao - Manila - Davao . . . . . P2,465.12
Manila - Busuanga - Manila . .  P2,412.72

Terminal Fees: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . .P  620.00
Davao - Manila . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . P200.00
Manila - Busuanga . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  P200.00
Busuanga - Manila . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  P 20.00
Manila - Davao . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  P200.00

Accommodation & Tour Package

4D/3N Coron Islands Escapade Tour Package (P6,970.00 less 10% discount) . . . . . . . .  P6,273.00
Inclusions are:

  • 3 nights accommodation at CORON ECO LODGE with Breakfast
  • 1 Buffet picnic lunch during Coron Island Tour with afternoon snacks
  • 1 Buffet picnic lunch during Islands Escapade Tour with afternoon snacks
  • Coron Town Tour (half day)
  • Roundtrip airport transfers
  • Land and boat transfers, permits & entrance fees.
Dinner budget for 3 nights . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . P1,000.00

Total . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .P12,770.84



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14 comments:

  1. Yey!! Ansaya namang basahin at may special mention pa ako! Yey naman! Salamat Ricky! till next time! I just realized you are the first travel blogger I met, lahat Puros online Lang. Nice meeting you and for sure I will be seeing you again. Till next time! ;) unfortunately for me, I can't post pa mine dami ko pang backlogs..;(

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  2. Nice meeting you too Violy and see you around. Thanks for sharing my post to your friends :)
    God bless!

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  3. i seriouly craving for seafoods

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  4. You've got a nice blog there! and photos too! Awesome!!! So with 15K on hand, one can reach Coron. :)

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  5. Thank you Karen, it depends on where you are from. It can be cheaper if you are from Manila because you don't have to spend for a plane fare like me from Davao and if you have buddies travelling with you to share with dining expenses. 15K is pretty safe, unless you planned to bring home a lot of goodies for "pasalubong" :)

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  6. Oh yeah! I forgot you're from Davao and it's a lot cheaper if you're coming from MNL. I commenced reading your blogs here. I finished 3 already and wish to read more in my free time. I love those pics! cool! I read your profile and so, you're not a freelance writer! Like other bloggers, you just want to blog, write about your experiences and journeys! How do you manage your time? travelling, blogging and a full-time employee! I can say, you're a Batman at night? :)

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  7. @ Karen, thank you so much for reading my blog, hope somehow this will help you when you go to places I've been. Natawa naman ako sa comment mo ÿou're a Batman at night". You asked me how I managed my time having a full time job, travelling & blogging. It's easy but not really easy .... ??? My job requires me to be in the office from 8am - 5pm. Once I'm out of the office I leave everything there. Travelling? we have 15 days vacation leave so I used it to at least travel twice a year (domestic or international. Blogging is done during my free time at home, there's not much traffic here in Davao so in 10 minutes I'm already home :)I am not a good writer that is why there's so much editing going on in my blogs entries. Most of my photos are taken by my friend Dave, we travel together a lot. Feel free to read and comment about my blog. Have a great day =)

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  8. I enjoyed reading this blog but made me sad when i saw the lobster's cost hahaha... gonna look for someone to treat me to Coron hahaha...:D

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  9. @ mavicdesigns . . . . . that is really a great idea . . . . ha ha ha ha ha =)

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  10. nice blog! you look so happy. the foods are really saliva flowing as well as the beach! thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thank you for reading tricia, Coron is one of the best place in the Phils =)

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  11. Wow, just viewing your photos feeling ko kasama na ako. the hot spring omg i love it. and that big lobster. looks promising haha.. may paglalagyan talaga pag ganyan kalaki ang lobster.. steamed or grill sure yummy. so much to say ...sobrang can feel the fun you had... but careful with that spiky thing..:D

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  12. Hi,

    You have a nice informative blog. Nice aerial photos

    We had visited Coron a few months ago, stayed at Discovery island resort (beautiful - and secluded away from Coron on a small outlying island).

    You can read my Coron blog here - http://goo.gl/uEHnn

    I have also posted photos and details of all the places in Coron - snorkeling in siete pecadoes, beach bumming, etc. Feel free to see my blog and do write a line or two if you liked it.

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  13. Its a good thing you dint cancel when ur friends did. :) Keep on rocking! and traveling...

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