Posts Tagged ‘snorkeling’

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After our mini trek to the top of Governor’s Island, we made our way to our next destination – Quezon Island, which was named after our late President Manuel Quezon.

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Out of all the other islands, Quezon Island seems to be the busiest. There are large concrete huts all over the island dedicated to all sorts of recreational activities. When we got there, all tables were already occupied mostly by families and we did not even bother fighting for one because we were more interested in swimming rather than just lazing around. We plopped our things under the rock with the Alaminos City sign, and immediately got into the water.

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We swam all the way to that floating gazebo (pictured below) mainly because we had nothing else to do, and also because the water near the shore is a little murky due to more construction still ongoing all over the island. I’m afraid this island will be over crowded and abused in a few years’ time. 😦

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Midway, we realized that we underestimated the distance of the gazebo from the shore. Not wanting to let our efforts go to waste, we pushed through anyway and made it after quite some time (the strong winds didn’t help much either). It was like a private party in the middle of the sea because not many people dared to swim that far off. When we got back to shore, our boatmen led us to where the giant clams were, but no photos because I didn’t have an underwater camera with me that time. Nonetheless, we thoroughly enjoyed the view of the Giant Clams and corals inhabited by a variety of fishes.

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After that long swim, we were quite worn out so we spent some time rolling around the fine white sand, people-watching while trying to get re-energized.

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By this time, we were more than ready for our lunch but our boatmen insisted that we just eat when we get to our next destination – which I will share with you next. 🙂

Edit: LOL scratch that last part. As it turns out, I do not have any photos from the day’s last destination but believe me when I say it’s amazing. We rolled around the beach’s powdery white sand and hiked up a hill just to jump down a large basin of water inside a cave. I swear it was amazing. But no pictures, bummer! 😦

After a sumptuous lunch at Bora Bora Restaurant, our speed boat made its way to the last destination for the day — Khai Nok Island. Koh Khai Nok is a small triangular island tucked in Phang Nga Bay.

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One special characteristic of Koh Khai Nok is that it has at least twelve types of exotic tropical fish and they aren’t afraid of humans. This is the only place I’ve been so far where you could snorkel above the water. Literally! You don’t even need to dip your head into the water to be able to see all the fish. The water is so clear and the fish are so fearless that they swim even on knee-deep waters.

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My friends and I were more interested in all the freshly cut fruits prepared by a member of our boat crew. He was masterfully cutting open piece after piece of pineapple and watermelon. All the guests could partake of the fruits, water and soda that they brought along. Well, don’t mind if I do! 🙂

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We rented out a parasol where we could put our things and rolled around on the beach’s powder white sand. The sand was so fine and it got everywhere. EVERYWHERE! Hahaha!

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On the other end of the island, less people were gathered. The water is relatively deeper and there are much more jagged rock formations than the inexperienced swimmer would dare get near to.

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After walking around and swimming with the fishies for a little bit, we went back under our parasol and gladly consumed some more watermelon that our full tummies could manage.  We just can’t get enough!

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We spent our last minutes lounging under our beach umbrella and people-watching. Not long after, our tour guide were calling everyone on board. Sadly, our whole day of gallivanting in Phuket’s Islands has come to an end.

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Our second day in Phuket was solely for island hopping. After a filling breakfast, we shuffled over to the marina where we were to hop on a speed boat along with other tourists. Too bad my friends and I were not the first ones on board, I would have loved to sit in the front deck of the boat. The seats inside were still fine, just limited view of the surroundings.

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The ride was really fast and quite bumpy! In no time, we arrived at our first destination: Ko Phi Phi Leh (“ko” means an island in Thai). Ko Phi Phi Leh is the second largest island in the Phi Phi archipelago, the largest one being Ko Phi Phi Don. Phi Phi Leh houses Viking Cave, from which there is a thriving bird’s nest soup industry.

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The island consists of a ring of steep limestone hills surrounding two shallow bays, the Maya Bay and Loh Samah. Although we didn’t get to Maya Bay’s coast, it is essential to mention that this is where the Hollywood movie The Beach was shot. The cliff faces remind me so much of our very own Coron, Palawan.

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Since this island is just a small part of our whole day tour, we didn’t dock on its shores. Instead, our boat stopped near Viking Cave and our tour guide told us that we could swim around if we wanted to. We immediately strapped on our life vests and dove into the crystal blue waters.

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Shortly after, I fully abandoned my vest because it was becoming more of a nuisance for me. I swam Maya Bay’s deep waters and marveled at how calm the water is. I could easily carry on a conversation while treading, it was THAT calm.

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Some people on deck started throwing bread into the water and swarms of fish swam further up to get a nibble. The water was so clear, I didn’t even need goggles to see them (which was also a good thing because stupid me forgot to bring my snorkeling gear).

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After swimming around for almost an hour, our guide started calling us on board and we made our way to our next island destination. Come back here soon to read about it! 🙂

If you want to check out how we spent our first day in Phuket, click here –> Phuket, Thailand (Day 1)

 

 

After parasailing over Manukan Island, we decided to head back to the waters and explore some more. Armed with our rented snorkeling gears and life vests, we made our way to the docks where we earlier saw lots of other tourists lying face down in the water. 😀

The water was kinda murky plus I was using a so-so camera so the photos are far from excellent quality. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed that snorkeling session. There were not that much corals but surprisingly, there was an abundance of fish! Schools of fish would just swim by every now and then.

But I was most entertained by an oddly shaped coral. Can anyone else see BUTT? 😀

And it kinda looks like it just shat a buttload too! LOL! 😀

When we got tired of swimming around, we headed to the shore to devour our lunch before our boat takes us to our next island destination. On our way to the picnic tables, we came across a dead fish.

Poor fishy. 😦

 

Our second day in Kota Kinabalu was dedicated to spending time on the beach. From our lodge, we walked towards Kota Kinabalu’s Jesselton Point jetty where we booked a tour from one of the many tour operators in the area and got a pretty good deal including stops at two islands (Manukan and Mamutik), snorkeling gears, and a parasailing package (!!! – more on a separate entry).

 

 

After a short 15-minute boat ride, we arrived at our first destination for the day – Manukan Island. We were instantly taken by the gorgeous view of trees, sand, water, fishes, and well… people in bikinis. Haha! 🙂

 

 

We proceeded to pay the conservation fee in order to gain access to the island. There’s a lot to do in the island – from simply lazing under the sun to trying out scuba-doo (an underwater scooter ride). Us? We availed of their parasailing package! 🙂 We hurriedly looked for the boatman to take us parasailing and were the first batch to go up flying that day.

After almost an hour, we went back to shore and put on our snorkeling gears. There were a lot of fishes that day since the water was very calm. They especially were clustered near the boat deck since that’s where the tourists throw the feeds.

After being in the water for quite a while, we found a spot under the trees and ate our lunch. The view while eating was spectacular.

 

 

Stay tuned for more island hopping adventures in Kota Kinabalu. 🙂