It was a choice whether we’ll go back to Manila the same route which is through Laoag or do a horse-shoe route and have a side-trip in Tuguegarao instead. While I’ve been to Tuguegarao several times already in the past years, our friend Erick hasn’t been there and it’s been five years since Og last visit in the area. So the group decided it would be real interesting to go through Tuguegarao instead and stay there for the night before finally heading back to Manila.
The rains continued on until the morning the next day when we were about to leave Claveria. We took our lunch before our ride, then trooped under the rain and rode a van heading to Tuguegarao located at the junction near Petron Station. The ride was around 3 hours as we saw the transition from a rainy area to a slightly better weather in Tuguegarao. We met up with one of the Cagayan Tourism officers, Ted later that evening while enjoying a plate of Pancit Batil Patung at Budyoks.
The next day we paid a visit at Tuguegarao Capitol and Tourism office. The people there were very accommodating and toured us around the place like the museum and capitol grounds while we were waiting for our transportation to arrive. The capitol grounds is huge and the main building looks nice. The exhibit display sequence was very well done and the photos posted there from a photo contest they conducted showed a lot of interesting aspects of Cagayan. There were a lot waterfalls I’ve never heard of, cultural activities and practices.
Finally we were on our way to Penablanca to visit the very famous Callao Cave. I’ve written much about Callao Cave before but there was a very interesting development a year ago. The recent discovery of a human foot bone in the extensive cave network of Callao Cave have pushed the Philippine’s history further as the remains was found to be 67,000 years old. The crown of the oldest human remains has been taken from the 47,000 Tabon Man in Palawan to what they now call the Callao Man. It was a breakthrough discovery.
What I liked about my visit this time around in Callao Cave is that we have the time to ourselves unlike the last time I was part of the tour. Callao Cave is a very easy cave to visit, it’s literally a walk in the park through its seven chambers. While some people would find it as unexciting, I think the beauty of the cave is its hollowness and how the light would seep in dramatically at certain times of the day.
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.