Friday, February 24, 2012

Lake Sebu, South Cotabato

2nd Day of SOCCSKSARGEN trip

(Acronym for the provinces: South Cotabato, Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani and General Santos City)

  We rented a van going to Lake Sebu, in the highlands of South Cotabato. They have a good wide concrete highway going to South Cotabato from Gensan. It was a pleasant ride. We passed by Dole Pineapple Plantation along Polomok and was greeted by Mt. Matutum in the horizon. Mt. Matutum is also an active volcano. We stopped by the road side fruit stand. It's evident that Mindanao has rich soil, there is an abundance of fresh exotic fruits. They have Durian, Marang, Chico, Pineapple, Bananas, Papayas etc. We bought some MG3 Pineapple and Marang. The MG3 Pineapple is the Dole Variety, it's sweet and in bright Yellow color. Towards Lake Sebu, we passed by rice fields & Durian Farms. 

Mt. Matutum

Marang Fruit

   It was an uphill drive, Lake Sebu is 1000m above sea level. The lake is a watershed for South Cotabato. When we entered Punta Isla Lake Resort, we were greeted by the view of the calm lake. It is famous for fresh Tilapia. We stayed in an open wooden cottage along the edge with the beautiful view of the lake. While waiting for our lunch to be prepared we roamed around the vicinity. The resort itself is beautiful with the colorful flowers and expansive range of greenery. Some variety I've never encountered before. There were several kids on their wooden boat. Some would ask for money but we opt to give them food.

  We enjoyed the crunchy Chicharon Tilapia and Sweet & Sour Tilapia. I love the Durian Shake. We also ate the fresh Adobo Squid we bought in Glan, Sarangani and the fresh MG3 Pineapple. We were also visited by the local artists from the T'boli Ethnic Tribe. They sang and danced for us. The singer has a solid soulful voice even though we can not understood the dialect it's purely beautiful. The little girl also dance a T'boli courtship dance.

MG3 Pineapple

   After Punta Isla, we visited the T'Boli Museum.  The museum is full of their culture. They have posted there their authentic garments, weapons, musical instruments, brass ornaments and their Tinalak weaving.  I tried on the brass belt with little bells, which is quite heavy. They even have old Chinese Ceramic Plates. T'boli Tribe is famous for the art of weaving and their music.

  That afternoon we drove off to the 7 Waterfalls of Lake Sebu, but we were able to access only a few. The other waterfalls will take hours to hike to. I was really looking forward to the zip line. I'm addicted to zip lines. This is an awesome experience flying above the lush green trees and waterfalls. My father has fear of heights so he did not join me. But to our surprise Tito Arman decided to try it. He is calm during the ride not like me. He is already in his 70's that why the people there looked up to him. The first zip line is 740 meters and the other one is 400m. It is 600 ft above, a just about 20 meters per second. It's really fast unlike the other ones I've tried before. And it was really high, I hesitated looking straight down. But it was really an ultimate ride, one of my favorite.

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