Underwater Wonders At Bucas Grande Island

 

Matet: A two-hour boat ride from Dapa Port in Siargao brought us to the port of Socorro and from there, our small boat ferried us to Sohoton National Park, the gateway to Bucas Grande Island.

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9am // Sohoton Cove

We were asked to transfer to a smaller outrigger boat, which had brought us inside Sohoton Cove, a half-submerged cove in water with entrance and exit disappearing at high tide. Sharp rocks are at its mouth, so wearing a helmet is compulsory. Sohoton Cove should not be mistaken with Sohoton Cave, as the latter is a vast cave system in Samar while the former is a natural haven in Surigao del Norte.

We entered a hole that could only fit the boat, and from the mouth of Sohoton Cove we saw a wonderful world waiting for us!

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There are three attractions inside Sohoton Cove: Horse Foot, Hagukan Cave and Mag-kukuob Cave. Just a few meters from its mouth is the Horse Foot rock formation. Aptly named, it resembles a foot and leg of a horse, as if suspended above water. Our boatman also brought us to Hagukan Cave, a small dome-like cave that is accessible by swimming beneath a rock. Our tour inside Sohoton Cove ended with an adrenalin-packed activity: spelunking and cliff diving at Mag-kukuob Cave!

12pm // Jellyfish Sanctuary

We then went back to the base camp and continued our journey to the jellyfish sanctuary. Here, we had to ride a small paddle boat almost the size of a kayak to get through. Motorized boats are not allowed inside the lagoon as it could kill the jellyfish living there. We spent around 20 minutes at the jellyfish sanctuary and went back to the base camp for our last leg of the tour: the beaches of Marka-a and La Fortuna.

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1pm // Marka-a Beach

Marka-a beach is short but very picturesque. The warm fine white sand is soft and relaxing to the feet. The water is undeniably clear, and the marine life is beautiful. After snorkeling with some clownfish, we hopped on our boat and headed to La Fortuna beach.

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3pm // La Fortuna Beach

We were welcomed by the friendly caretaker at La Fortuna beach, who gladly showed us around the glistening stretch of powdery white sands and off to the idyllic lake at the back of the island. We trekked for about 10 minutes to reach this lake, and the effort was more than worth it.

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6pm // Hayanggabon

It was already sunset when we arrived at the mainland in Hayanggabon. Though tired and exhausted,  we were still glad we were able to see that much in Bucas Grande. A day is definitely not enough!

Matet Garcia-Reyes writes to travel and travels to write. An AB Communications Arts graduate from the University of Santo Tomas, she gave up her six-year career in Marketing Communications and Public Relations to fulfill her dreams of becoming a travel, food, and lifestyle writer. Her works have been published both online and in print, locally and internationally. She advocates promotion of local tourism and supports initiatives on sustainability of indigenous communities.

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Our journey began with an idea to discover what it means to travel the Philippines, beyond the alluring images of sparkling blue waters and powder white sand. We seek to share travel stories to inspire the wide-eyed traveler, moving them deeper into the destination with stunning images and narratives about its sights, tastes, textures, smells, and local life.

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