Calintaan Calling

June 27, 2016 Travel

There are not many tourists visiting this part of Mindoro. I am thinking just mountaineers who are climbing Mts. Iglit and Baco and relatives and friends of Calintaan residents.  We would not have subjected ourselves to the really long bus ride also, approximately 12 hours, had it been not for our mission.  

We were there to recon for TRails to Empower Kids or TREK. 

During this time of the year, we go out to the remotest of the remote places, to seek the poorest of the poor, to spark the brightest of the brightest hopes.

Our group, now nine years old, has been conducting outreach programs benefiting kids or students from isolated schools.  Most of these schools, because of their isolation, have not received help, or sometimes even visitors, from outside their community.

So, we really search.  We do not want any school left behind and thanks to our volunteers and their friends; we are always directed to the right school. 

We trekked the hills of Mt. Malpalon to visit Balangabong Elementary School and its annex.  

Malpalon is just beside Poypoy, the jump off to Mts. Iglit and Baco, which is in every Filipino mountaineers’ bucket list.  The trail is well established and is not that difficult.  

We were lucky it didn't rain the previous nights, so the pickup truck we used was able to take us as far as the second river we had to cross.  From the river, it was about a 30-minute assault to the community.

The schools serve the Taubuids, one of the Mangyan ethnic groups of Mindoro.  The others are Iraya, Alangan, Tadyawan, Buhid, and Hanunuo. 

Pasugsog Falls

In Barangay Malpalon, there is also waterfalls that is also worthy of a visit.

The name is Pasugsog Falls.  There are not signages leading to the falls, and it is a very short trek.  It's a multi-layered falls surrounded with a thicket.

We visited upon the invitation of the Barangay Captain and we enjoyed the cold dip.

Labros Camp and Adventure Resort

From summit to sea, Calintaan is beautiful.  Another must place to go to is Labros.

What really caught my attention is its long and wide stretch of cream-colored fine sand beach.  Perfect for frolicking, right? 

The great thing about destinations that are not popular is this.  All of this for ourselves. 

Well, aside from that, Labros has a lot of other features to boast of. 

First is its huge, well-maintained grounds with so many lush greens that welcome guests. The whole property is actually 35 hectares. There are some rope courses set-up like zip lines and hanging bridges.  

Second, it is thoughtful to the needs and wants of guests.  Throughout the resort, there are picturesque spots perfect for lounging around and oh yes, taking selfies.  There are also family friendly activities like a basketball court and a billiards table. 

The only thing that really bothered me was the karaoke machine that started from sun up and ended at 10:00 PM.  I would have appreciated the resort more if I was listening to the waves and the chirps of the birds instead of those serious attempts to murder classic songs.

Anyway, to continue, the rooms are also nice, spacious and priced reasonably.  And, of course, the staff.  They are nice and very accommodating.

The Calintaan experience would not be complete without watching its glorious sunset and without going around the islets.

Luli and Bato Tabao  

On the itinerary are Luli and Bato Tabao.

Luli is a sandbar that submerges during high tide.  The name is a portmanteau for the Tagalog terms lulubog (sinking) and lilitaw (appears), which describes the character of the sandbar.

I couldn’t tell the shape and length of the sandbar, as it was submerged when we visited, but nonetheless, we enjoyed swimming in it.

Bato Tabao is a small karst limestone outcrop, which we see from the resort.

There is a ladder on one side of the island for guests.  I guess it gives a sweeping view of the island and the sea, but I didn’t dare.  I just recovered from an accident. I also saw cliff jumping video, but also, I would not dare.

Anyway, it is really nice to swim in the crystal clear water surrounding Bato Tabao.

This all happened in one weekend, and we are looking forward to returning.

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