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Philippines: Whale sharks and partying June 11, 2010

Filed under: Travelling — Tai @ 5:30 am

 

philipinesGot to do something, hey I’ve never swam with a 12 metre whale shark.  So I jumped a plane to Donsol in Philipines.  A flight to Manila and then onto Donsol.  Left at midnight in Singapore and was standing on the beach in Donsol at 8am in the morning.  It sits under a huge and symmetrical volcano called Mt Mayon. 

 I jumped an outrigger to where the whale sharks pass.  The whale sharks are filter feeders, so plankton…  They can live up to 70 yrs, get to 12m and weigh up to 14 tons.  So they’re big.  Just off the cost of Donsol is a plankton rich area, so the whale sharks cruise here. (BTW, not my photo of the shark, didnt have an underwater camera).

The spotters stand on the boat and look for brown shadows in the water. They cruise about 3-4 metres below the surface in this area.  The boats speed up and drop you in the path.  You can’t dive with them but you can snorkel with them.  So they cruise past and you swims for as long as you can next to them. I saw 3.  I got within a metre of these things they are huge, grey/brown and spotted.  They look like whales.  It was cool.

donsol

There wasn’t that much else to do in the areas, so I jumped a flight to Boracay.  The new hot beach destination in asia.  Restaurants on the beach, lots of dance floors and bars on the beach.  A kite surfing mecca on one side of the islands and party heaven on the other. 

It is a good place to relax or party. 

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boracuayboracuaymanilamanila

Met some good people here and spent 3 nights partying.  You have to be careful in the bars.  There are many “GRO” – Guest Relationship Officer.  They start talking to you and want to be your date.  Keeps you on your toes.

The Filipinos are shy but happy people.  I stopped off in Manila on the way back and had 6  hours to wander around.  Not an exciting or beautiful city.  Caught a rickshaw to the wrong side of town and felts very out of place..  My touristy clothes in the middle of the poorest neighbourhood I have seen anywhere in the world.  I just kept walking until I was out.

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