Thursday, June 23, 2011

El Nido: Seeking Felicity

I was armed with knowledge gathered from several blogposts about this place in El Nido, it is almost claimed to be the hidden gem of the island.I was intrigued of the possibility that this particular piece of paradise actually exists, finally a decision was made - I am dropping the second island tour for a daytrip to visit Nacpan & Calitang beach.

To set plans into motion, I talked with the receptionist of Marina Garden which fortunately is very accommodating and helpful. She agreed to help us find a tricycle to  take us to Nacpan and back to El Nido town. I haggled for a fee of Php 500 which was the price that Bino of the Framelessworld ( got but I guess I don't have the charm that he had because no matter how many "pa-cute" stunts I made the lowest fare we can get is Php 800. 

As the old adage goes - "Beauty comes with a price", the road to Nacpan/Calitang will fool you at first believing that the ride will be smooth and breezy as the tricycle cruise along the cemented pavement away from El Nido town. Twenty minutes into the ride, the paved roads ended and it was a long stretch of bumpy ride and small roads. That morning there was a bit of rain which resulted to several puddles along the road, two times our tricycle driver has to stop and check if the puddle/mud is not deep for us to drive through.  As several rice paddies and wooden shacks (bahay kubo) passed, I was thinking at the back of my mind if it is possible that this simple town can claim such beauty or maybe the pictures I saw are just edited very well and it will not be as breathtaking as I imagined it to be.

The tricycle continues to rattle along the beaten path and small road, when the tips of rows and rows of coconut trees became visible in the horizon.Finally some signs that this trip might hold some promise after all. The tricycle continued to cruise towards the coconut trees and the landscape opened into the most breathtaking beach I have ever laid my eyes on. The sand may not be as white as the one in Boracay but it was fine and it seemed to stretch endlessly. The water was the color of bluish green that invites you to run to the sea and touch it. As I craned my neck from left to right, almost not a single soul except for a couple of fishermen getting the boat ready perhaps for that night's fishing trip. The first words that came out of my mouth right at that moment "Ang ganda nito!" (This is such a beauty!). Words and even pictures fail to describe the experience of setting foot into this beach, it is like walking into a postcard of a beach - almost isolated, fine sand and the blue sea.

As we walked along the shore of the beach, we found out that there are some fishing villages whom I envy to have this place to wake up to every morning and there is one big concrete house that stands out among the lowly shacks (bahay kubo) which reeks of "I am owned by a rich person". Out of curiosity we asked the tricycle who owned that house and he said that a foreigner happens to be the owner. 

When we finally picked out a nice spot to settle, I unrolled my sarong and lay it over the sand. I sat down and thought that the rough ride and missed island hopping tour was truly worth it. I picked up my camera and tried (epic fail!) to capture the beauty of one of God's masterpiece - I finally found felicity in my own shore. 

Vacation Tips:
How to get here: Hire a tricycle from El Nido town.They will fetch you from your resort, wait for you in Nacpan/Calitang and then it's back to your resort. Price range varies but we were  quoted  Php800 (half day trip) & Php 1000 (whole day trip). 

Travel time: Est. 1 hr. one way 

Additional Notes:
 - there are no stores and other establishment on the beach. Bring your own food and drinks as well as a sarong or picnic mat that you can use to lounge around
 - sand fly seems to abound in the area and I still have the bite marks/scars until now to prove it. Slather yourself with insect repellant (lesson learned)


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