By: Gary Magpantay
If you are looking for exciting and serene experience at the same time, I highly encourage you to come and visit Metro Dumaguete. Feel both the excitement and the stillness that this place offers. It will turn your adrenaline and serenity upside down as you encounter the thrills and chills in this tourist destination.
The Balinsasayao Twin Lakes Natural Park
The first time I saw this signage, I was mesmerized by the information it offers. The Balinsasayao Twin Lakes Natural Park, known as the “Twin Lakes,” is under the jurisdiction of seven (7) barangays of three (3) different towns. Wow! That’s a huge lake! This place is sure to give peaceful moments for contemplation and relaxation.
Yet, before I experienced that serene environment, I first encountered a long, stressful bumpy trip. It seemed to be a very rough route, but as I went, I found myself enjoying these wonderful landscapes.
And at the end of my journey, I was amazed at the worth of my long travel! Feel free to be amazed yourself at the splendor of this nature.
If you’re planning to come to Twin Lakes, I suggest you bring your own snacks for there are only few goods to buy in the place. You can have a comfortable picnic at the Nipa huts within the vicinity.
If you wish to sail through the lake, you can either rent a kayak (for singles and couples) or a boat (for group/barkadas).
I was told that the lake is also called as “Katamaran” Lake. It is the Filipino word for laziness. As we sailed, I sort of realized why it is called “Katamaran.” Forget about laziness! Call it easy, still, calm, serene! Words were not enough to describe the calmness I experienced during that moment.
There is a falls at the other end of the lake. Honestly, I was exhausted as we trekked a short, yet very rocky and stiff route.
But exhaustion had a pleasing reward! The Ulayan Falls was such a beauty to behold!
Take a look at this picture!
Whoa! I usually see this in the movies. But in that magical moment, I saw it for real! The Apo Island is one of the best diving spots in the Philippines.
I was also awestruck by the beauty of this little hill of rocks. It is like an ancient ruins formed in perfection!
As I walk beside its shore, I fell in love with however angle I look at it!
We were told that there’s a place in the island where the Pawikans nests their eggs. With all excitement, I rushed to my feet towards the turtle’s nests.
However, when we arrived at the place, I was saddened by the information that there were no more eggs because a storm swept them all away.
I learned that Pawikans are definitely loved and cared for in this place.
We went back to our boat to have our diving session. It was my first time to dive at 10 meters deep. The excitement that I felt surpassed my nervousness for being a newbie diver. I was also thrilled that I would be confined with these diving gears.
The first time I plunged into the waters with these was a fulfilling sensation.
The diving instructors taught us how to “equalize” for every meter dive we make. “Equalize” is the term they use to release the pressure that you feel in your ears whenever you take a deeper plunge into the waters.
When I plunged deeper into the sea and began to feel the pain in my ears, I was really tensed and thought of going up to release the pain. Yet, the beauty that waits at the bottom inspired me to go further. So I decided to plunge deeper. Good that I took the challenge! I was so delighted in the splendor of the underwater!
As we went back from Apo Island towards the city proper of Dumaguete, this scene caught my attention. This was a scene of the sun and the storm in one picture!
I couldn’t help but to express happiness with an instant insight: This was a very perfect picture of the blessed hope we have in God – that there is always light after life’s storms; that God is always watching us even in the darkest moments of our lives.
Thank you Apo Island! Your beauty truly reflects the wonders of God’s creation!
Aquatica at Tierra Alta
Want to experience more thrills and chills in one place? Visit Aquatica at Tierra Alta.
Aquatica is a perfect place for weddings, debuts, and other grand events. If you prefer to have a long march towards the altar on your wedding day, this place will surely meet your criteria.
It is also a perfect place to have pre-nuptial shoots.
If you want to have an overlooking view of the place, climb the peak of its lighthouse.
Want to show your courage? Then, the Rush Zipline dares you to face what you’re afraid of. It is a 600 m long and 800 m high zipline wherein you can glide in different positions.
It is not that scary as one would think. Well, I dare you to glide through their zipline in an inverted position.
With all these amenities it offers, Tierra Alta is a sure bet if you want to have a wonderful experience here in Dumaguete.
Foods, Delicacies and Delights
After a very exciting and exhausting day, the food and delicacies the city presents are a good ending.
If you want to buy pasalubong for your friends, family and loved ones, and yet your budget is tight, try to visit Dumaguete’s public market and look for Catalyo Tamparong’s Painitan. There, you can buy Dumaguete’s cheap delicacies such as bud-bud (or known as “suman” in Luzon) and kabog.
Try also one of the well-known merchandises in the city, the Sansrival Cakes and Pastries.
Panda Ice Cream Haus.
This is where I first tasted an ice cream that was deep fried in a boiling pot. Yes, I said it right! Come to this store and taste their “Fried Ice Cream.” Creamy inside, fluffy outside!
If you want a unique environment where you can also satisfy your cravings for food, visit the very colourful place of Gabby’s Bistro and be astonished at the cozy and cool ambiance that it offers.
If you prefer to dine in a Korean type of restaurant, 2 Story Kitchen is the perfect place for you!
The sensation that the food and delicacies Dumaguete gives really calmed me from all the extraneous activities we had in Dumaguete. But…. (a big BUT!) if you still have the guts to challenge yourself, visit tempurahan ni Bossing at Siliman University.
What’s the challenge? Buy Bossing’s tempura and dip it in his level 5 chilli sauce. Level 5 chilli sauce is just plain giniling na sili! Wow! I literally cried and rushed to buy two cups of juice when I tried it.
No words will best describe how to conclude my experience in Dumaguete! But what I’ve experienced in this place was a cozy, comfy, chilling yet adventurous, extreme, thrilling and fulfilling feeling!
JIL Dumaguete Worship Services Schedule:
Morning Service | 8:30AM - 10:00AM | 2F bldg., 2 Public Market, Dumaguete City
Evening Service | 5:30PM - 7.30PM | Bethel Guset House
KKB Gathering | 6:00PM - 9:00PM | 2F bldg., 2 Public Market, Dumaguete City