Serenity abound at the pleasant waters of Lake Sebu
I’m really loving our country a lot since I started exploring more of Mindanao. There is no denying there are a lot of great places here to explore only dampened by its negative notion of being ‘unsafe.’ True there are areas trodden with strife, but they are concentrated, and a lot of areas are still safe to visit. And with my recent trip to the Southern Cotabato region, I’m more convinced that our natural wonders can offer a lot and even compete fairly with those of other countries as well. And one of those places in this region where I was enthralled by its natural beauty and is considered by Jens Peters as the country’s most beautiful lake, is Lake Sebu. And seeing it myself, I couldn’t agree anymore.
Even our canine friend helps on keeping watch over the fish pens
The journey started from Centennial Terminal 2 where I waited for my clown (joke) este companion to arrive. I had the pleasure of being in company with another talented photographer and word smith, Oggie on this one. Watch out for this guy as his works will soon be featured on the Digital Photographer Philippines glossy very soon as he goes on assignment this weekend in Coron-Calauit, Palawan.
Fishermen rise before dawn to tend to their tilapias at the fish pens
Anyways, despite the stormy weather here in Manila the day before caused by the Super Typhoon Egay, we had no second thoughts on pushing through since Mindanao as we know is blessed with better weather in our country. We flew via Air Philippines to Gen San since they had an earlier flight at 8:10am and found our way 2 hours later on the roads hopping from a Yellow Bus to Koronadal, another bus to Surallah, a short tryke ride to a jeepney terminal, and riding a jeepney to the Lake Sebu took around 3 hours from Gen San.
The floating restaurant and the wide stretch of the lake
The jeep going up to Lake Sebu was trudging heavily on the winding road, probably due to its heavy cargo and passengers. It was slow and the wait was close to agonizing already. As we go upwards, the cool wind can be felt. It reminds me of going up the mountains in Cordilleras. A bit weary and hungry by that time, I guess the other passengers noticed, that three nice ladies gave us a bag of Minatamis na Saging (sweetened banana). Nakakahiya at first. Hahaha. But we did take it eventually as I’m already drooling at the sight of it. Wow. People here are so nice. Soon, after a short habal-habal ride, we found ourselves at Punta Isla Resort and marveled at the sight of the Lake Sebu from the establishment. Breathtaking is all I can say. And we’re just beginning our adventure.
Ferdz Decena is an award-winning travel photographer, writer and blogger. His works has found print in publications such as Singapore Airlines’s Silver Kris, Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay, Cebu Pacific’s Smile and Seair InFlight. He has also lent his expertise to various organizations like the Oceana Philippines, Lopez Group Foundation, Save the Children and World Vision, contributing quality images for their marketing materials.