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I’m no scuba diver. I’m not a good swimmer either, but I love to explore the sea with all its living creatures underneath. Yes, I am also a selacophobic, but it didn’t stop me from discovering the undersea world. Since, I’m still saving up for a beginner’s course in scuba diving, I just resort to snorkeling for now.  In all fairness to me, I had already snorkeled at most of the popular sanctuaries in the Philippines. Our archipelago is abundantly gifted with a teeming marine population and tourists from all over the world visit the country every year to see it for themselves. And for those of you who haven’t experienced snorkeling or diving in the Philippines, let me share my snorkeling getaways every week.

Siquijor Island

Siquijor Getaway

 

First stop is the mystical island of SIquijor. After college graduation, my pals and I booked a night stay in Coco Grove Resort, Siquijor as a reward to ourselves for a job well done. We did a million interesting things; we lazed out under the sun, kayaked, swam in the pristine blue waters and even rode the banana boat. But the best part of it all, was when we borrowed snorkeling gear and launched ourselves into the cool water.

Tubod Marine Sanctuary

Snorkelling Gears

Snorkeling Gear

Aside from the pearly white sand beach, the resort also has its own marine reserve, Tubod Marine Sanctuary, making it very convenient for their guests who like to go snorkeling. Just a few steps from the beach  and you can already see a thriving nation of fish. An amazing seven hectares of coral reef and seagrass beds is home to schools of colourful fish.

Tubod Marine Sanctuary

Tubod Marine Sanctuary

My eyes were really busy from watching those colourful fish swimming past us. I saw fish as big as my slippers; unfortunately I can only recognize the parrot fish. There were huge varieties of fish, if only I had wider knowledge of fish species, I would name them all here.  While I was on my way back to the beach I yelped in horror when I accidentally stepped on a big, blue, spiny starfish. I really felt guilty, but trust me it wasn’t my intention to step on it. I’m glad though that it did not incur any serious injury.

Be Careful!

We snorkeled regardless of the burning heat of the sun; I forgot to put on sunscreen, so I ended up having a toasted back. Time really flies so fast when you’re enjoying it and in all honesty, we didn’t want to stop, but one of our friends stepped on a spiny sea urchin so we had to rush her to the CR to pick out the black spine. There was quite a bothersome population of big black sea urchins, but I wouldn’t hold it against the sanctuary because urchins are quite normal especially if life in the sanctuary is really thriving.

Lesson Learned

Lesson learned on this trip: don’t forget to put a lot of sunscreen on your back especially if you’re just wearing a bikini. It’s not so nice to have a toasted back with a fair front part. And if you want to visit Siquijor Island, I highly recommend Coco Grove Resort.

Join me again next week for my next snorkeling getaways. :)

Continued from:  Siqui-Horror? Siqui-Amor? Horror and Romance in the Island of Siquijor – Part 1

She went to an isolated part of the shore outside the resort to enjoy some fresh air and clear her mind. A deviant and adventurous girl, she ignored a warning sign thinking that all of the people in the island were very friendly and everything is safe. She sat on a rock then closed her eyes to meditate with the hope of getting a vision of why she was lead to go to this island.

Coco Grove Beach Resort – Siquijor Island

Two men suddenly grabbed her and tried to kidnap her using a boat hidden in the rocks. After getting thrown in the boat, a stranger who is skillful in mixed martial arts knocked down both men then helped her escape back to the resort.

The woman was very thankful to the stranger, she said that she can’t imagine what would have happened if he wasn’t around that time. The stranger was gentle and charming. She was very pleased with the way he conversed to her. He introduced himself as one of the tourists in the resort.

Salamandas Restaurant – Coco Grove Beach Resort

The stranger invited her for a dinner and the woman never had any second thoughts. They talked about their adventures and almost anything. They had a fun time together and their conversations seemed endless.

They decided to meet daily to have fun together around the island. What the woman didn’t know is that the guy is the treasure hunter who was cursed almost three years ago after attempting to steal the island’s treasure in one of their caves.

His body was turned into stone and his spirit was transferred to the fishes. Only a woman of his destiny can free his spirit and restore his body. But that woman should give him a kiss of true love before the sun goes down on the third day upon restoring it or else the curse will come back again.

Cambugahay Falls – Siquijor

The treasure hunter didn’t’ tell this to the woman because he didn’t want to force her to love him for the sake of helping him get out of the curse. He just continued to have fun with her being sure to make the best of every moment in hopes for favorable events and a outcome the would lift the curse.

In the twilight of the third day, he openly expressed his love for her. Deep inside his heart he is grieving because it might be his last day to be with her. The woman smiled and was very happy because she feels the same way about him.

Coco Grove Beach Resort

In that quiet moment when they were about kiss each other, a big crab pinched the treasure hunter’s toe and it distracted them.  This crab was sent to distract them in a moment like this by the sorcerer who had cursed the treasure hunter to become a stone.

.The sun went down before the kiss that could have lifted his curse. The treasure hunter faded slowly in the woman’s sight. Shocked, confused and scared she ran inside her room crying until she fell asleep. She woke up the next day with a headache.

She pondered the past three days over breakfast, wondering if all had been real or just a dream. She reminisced of all the fun times she had with the treasure hunter and knew it was all real but couldn’t explain what happened last night.

Sunset Restaurant – Coco Grove Beach Resort

She realized that her dreams of glowing fishes had stopped when this man had come into her life.  She went to that pond again only to see some ordinary fishes.

She noticed for the first time that the statue of a man sitting in the pond sits exactly the same way as the guy who helped her with the kidnappers. This is the favorite sitting position of that gentleman whom she fell in love with.

She sat next to the statue while reminiscing of her happy times with him. She was planning to tell him that she never had any visions in the island until the time that he came into her life. She tried meditating in many parts of the island during her search for the glowing fishes but received no visions.

Coco Grove Beach Resort

But when they are together, visions of their children and a happy family kept on flashing randomly on her that she never experienced before in her whole life. She even had a vision of them growing old together playing with their grandchildren.

Tears started to fall in her eyes because she felt that a big part of her was gone. She kissed the statue goodbye as if he was the man she loves then left the pond. She went to her room then started packing up to go home.

When she opened the door to checkout of the room, she saw something shocking that made her throw her umbrella and handbag. A guy quickly caught her stuff and gave it to her then smiled.

Coco Grove Beach Resort

The woman cried then embraced him, she couldn’t believe that he was back.  With her face full of wonder she invited him in to have a talk on the terrace and was very excited to find out what happened. The treasure hunter explained to her that the sorcerer never expected that he would get the kiss of true love in his statue form.

They both laughed and continued having a fun conversation. No crab interrupted this time thinking that its mission is already accomplished. But they’re fully aware that people with crab mentality might just be lurking around to sell them to the sorcerers and witches so they planned their escape in Siquijor Island.

Salagdoong Beach – Siquijor

They went to a log near the beach to get all of the gold that the treasure hunter hid inside it before he got caught. A friendly local recommended by the fortuneteller to contact helped them get to the seaport quickly to escape the island.

His name is Tata our tour guide and photographer around the island.

After an exhausting escape to a nearby island, the woman relaxed in a hammock that early evening while the treasure hunter was taking a bath. She got asleep without realizing it then woke up with four beetles in her tummy with blood in its thread.

She screamed very loud then woke up in a dream realizing that there’s a cockroach in her tummy. She screamed again and her husband ran very quickly with his hair still wet after taking a bath then asked her what happened.

Coco Grove Beach Resort

Her husband swatted the cockroach after flying on the wall. She threw her pillow to her husband screaming “I told you to clean this room while I was out of town for a seminar and hurry up hunting treasures!” The husband wondered then replied “You mean go the office right?”

Coco Grove Beach Resort