Traveling with friends, specifically, with my favorite people outside Cebu has always been my long-time dream. I thought it would be the best graduation gift since I’ve been deprived of things like this because of my hectic schedule in medical school. It was indeed an answered prayer when my parents allowed me to have this dream travel. Trust me, I felt like a happy kid who just got out from her room for the first time!
Travel and good friends are very important to me. I always feel good when I’m surrounded by my close friends. Adventures keep life exciting and when you can enjoy them with good friends they’re twice as fun.
Our chosen destination was at Malapascua Island, an island located in North Cebu, which attracts local and foreign tourists, especially divers, because of its rich marine sanctuary.
It was also surprising and exciting at the same time that Aljon, who was working in Manila, was able to join our escapade and volunteered to drive for us using his new car named.. Strontium? Rhodium? Ruthenium? Hahaha! Forgive me, Aljon, for forgetting your car’s name.
Hotels dot the shore, restaurants lining along the beach, and dive tours are offered at almost every corner. No pave roads around. No crowd. Just what I have always wanted, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
We strolled around the island and stumbled upon an epic bar and restaurant that is most popular for its colorful decor and reggae vibes.
They called the place “Villa Sandra”. It’s known for its live band concerts at night. But it’s also a place where you can chill and chat, lounge out on the cushions or chill in a hammock and enjoy the place.
Nothing much happened in the afternoon. We just had lunch in a carenderia and strolled around the long white island. The scorching sun never really bothered us. Kidding. It actually did. For me. Haha. But it did not stop us from having fun and taking photos.
At night, we ate dinner at this little Thai restaurant called “Aroi Mak” and even more surprised that it was any good. The food was delicious, fresh and awesome most especially their Red Curry and Pad Thai! The laid back environment with warm breeze and fresh air made the place all worth it.
Day 2 was Island Hopping Day! It was indeed a beautiful weather. The sun was out. The sea was clear with its beautiful waves. Everyone woke up early in the morning to prepare for the most awaited activity- swimming.
Malapascua Island was thought to be popular for its thresher sharks, shipwrecks, and mostly for its corals and rock formation. Thus, snorkeling here we come!
Although I didn’t have a copy of our underwater pictures, various rock formation and schools of fishes were found underneath.
Even if it is a public beach, it is relatively rarely visited because it is quite a distance away from Bounty Beach, the town center, and the dock. It’s a perfect place for those who want some peace and quiet.
It’s sad to see that we are increasingly evolving towards a materialistic society. Brands want us to believe that we will be happier with a bigger house, a bigger car and a more expensive watch. But for me, the most beautiful things in life aren’t bought with money. Enjoying a beautiful sunrise, spending a pleasant day with your good friends. These are things that do not cost money but are priceless. I can’t thank God enough for letting me have this bunch of priceless gems! They may not know this but these people have a piece in my heart and they really fill my love tank.
Kalanggaman Island Day Trip
Kalanggaman is most famous for its incredible sandbar that is surrounded by crystalline waters and a lush palm tree forest on one end. This little tropical paradise seemingly lies in the middle of the ocean.
The travel time to Kalanggaman usually takes 1 ½ hour to 2 hours from Malapascua. It mostly depends on the waves. During our tour, the boys including RB opted to sit infront to get a good view of the sea and feel the angry waves splashing them. Haha.
This photo is one of my favorite group picture of us. I love staring at this photo when I feel alone because I know this was my happiest moment- being with the people I am comfortable with and away from my medical books and responsibility at the hospital. Hahaha!
After the trip, we doze off for awhile and decided to eat dinner at a beautiful Italian restaurant beside the beach with the view of the beautiful moon. We really enjoyed their cuisine especially their black pasta. I have always been fond of pastas. Companionship indeed always deepens joy. Somehow a great meal is more satisfying when shared.
We like to be together simply because it feels good. We receive strength, encouragement, and love. We talk, we cry, we listen. Because of the shared trust and acceptance, we are the same people who can impact each other’s hearts, for we know how to deliver the hard message with truth and grace. I believe this is what Proverbs 27:17 means when it says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”
It was a lovely evening. I can still remember the memories and feelings vividly. I loved every moment of it.
To end this post, let me say:
Nothing is more beautiful than to reminisce about things that you have experienced together. Most often the people you have experienced with are just as important as what you did. The real profound memories create a bond for life.
Looking back at those great moments that you enjoyed together with your friends will not only give you a good feeling, it will also reinforce the bond you have with each other.
‘Til next trip, guys!
[Some photos are not mine. Credits to my friend Carl Henry]