In the afternoon of our first day in Claveria, we decided to visit Taggat Lagoon. This was the place which really caught my attention first time seeing it under the heavy rain and gray sky during our Lakbay Norte tour. I was excited to see it again in better light condition this time around. We took a tricycle from the Claveria town center (P70 whole tricycle) then got in Taggat Lagoon with an entrance of P10. It was a wonderful afternoon of beautiful light and curious eyes as we walk into the picturesque cove.
We heard the weather up in these parts is usually gloomy with occasional showers but it was a bright and sunny welcome when we arrived at the town of Claveria. Immediately we went to Casa Grand Inn just beside the boulevard facing the sea. We already booked our accommodations here in advance and was pleasantly surprised how spacious and comfortable our room was. On the first part of the day we did some walking around to get familiar and orient ourselves with the place.
It seems I’ve been scaling deeper up north a lot lately and I really don’t mind. It’s time to get past the ever popular Ilocos region and cross the border just a step to Cagayan Region and explore the next town of Claveria. Known as the gateway to the Babuyanes Islands, Claveria is a small town with its livelihood revolving around fishing. First time I went here during the Lakbay Norte 2, we rode through here under heavy rain but it didn’t dampen the magnificent rock formations the place holds. So I went back with a few friends and discovered a lot more.
Buguey’s seafood buffet was more than enough to fill us during the two hour journey to Claveria, the last town in Cagayan next to Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte. I was enjoying the view from my window despite the rain while sliding sideways from our seats as we traverse the twisting highroads to the town of Claveria. A coastal town where the river flows, numerous blue boats parked on the shore and people in their blue rain coats were tending their nets were seen. It was really interesting.
There seems to be no sign of the rains stopping on the 3rd day of Lakbay Norte 2. Checking out of Eastern Hawaii Hotel at Sta Ana, we boarded a new bus this time on our way to our first stop at Buguey (boo -gay), a small coastal town mid-north of Cagayan province. I was seated on the right side of the bus watching the gloomy landscape pass by my window. In a couple of hours we reached the El Presidente Resort Conference Hall where the locals there prepared meals for our lunch and some cultural programs.
I’ve been looking at the stark gray sky repeatedly while hoping that it would clear up or much less, let the rains abate. It’s been at least an hour since our original call time. We’ve eaten our packed breakfast and spent time idle with Sun City‘s speedy internet connection. We could have slept over these wasted time but we were all raring to go to Palaui Island. It will be my first time to set foot on this island at the northeast tip of mainland Luzon and I won’t let this rain dampen my excitement.
For a while there I thought I was in a land somewhere in China with all the facilities and style of architecture similar to the ones found in the mentioned country. It doesn’t help that the cable channels are mostly Chinese with only a couple of English speaking channels in line. If not for the, tropical climate, Filipino staffs and their hospitable vibe here, I’d be lost at this high-end Cagayan Holiday and Leisure Resort (Sun City) in Sta Ana Cagayan. They’ve been up here in Cagayan Valley for years now and was enjoyed exclusively by tourists from Mainland China and Hong Kong. Now they are ready to open the doors to Filipinos as well.