|Entry to the cottages|
When I was younger, come march, our summer meant going to any of the swimming pools/resorts nearby. Considering that people then were less mobile than now, travelling around 100+ kilometres happens in perhaps only every third month or so.
Today, now that we got faster cars, more tollways and better paved roads, as in NLEX, 100 kilomters is easy for 30-45 mins. My friend who works as a medical representative drives a minimum of 125 kilometers a day. Goodbye out of town , hello out of province trips.
|1st pool on the left, pathway to the cottages, cottages on the right; I think these ones are P1000 each|
The first time I heard about Poracay was probably in the 2000s; Being less than 5 kilometers away, I had never been really interested in this Resort, and there hasn’t been anyone all throughout these years to convince me to even check it out.
Two days before last weekend, my friend, whose family owns a canteen within clark air base, invited me to the family’s Sunday Plan. Sunday will actually an electric blackout and the canteen will not be operational. As the canteen operates 7 days a week, they take this time for family outings.
For this dayoff, Tito Pijong thought about JED’s island resort in Bulacan. When my friend Ivy told me about the plan, I, in fact resisted; I think resorts are direct rip offs. I mean, they charge several hundreds at a minimum for half day cottage rental, a 100 to several for entrance, corkages, etc, only to dip for an hour or two on supersatured chlorinated (and perhaps wee weenated) sun warm water. I said, no thanks. I’m not going to enjoy anyway and I might just spoil their excitement. So, I told my friend, please let them know im not coming.
|this is the cottage we've taken for P700. comfy enough|
Saturday evening came, I got a call from Ivy and to my surprise she was telling me to get up real early as, as soon as the electricity comes off, they’ll be off to location and will pick me up along the way. Well, she does not remember being told that I’m not coming. To complicate it further, she told me Tita has chosen to prepare food I had looked for in our last trip. At that point, it will be really embarrassing if I don’t come. She’s also told me they’ve changed the plan from JED’s island resort to Poracay, which is quite nearby anyway. I’ve also been hearing about a man made lagoon where you can go BALSA.
I got Ivy’s call at 7am asking me to prepare. I had just finished some stuff then and have not slept just yet. I had not choice though but to ready myself and my stuff. At 10am we were already in Poracay.
|apung pijong and facundo on the bbq pit|
Having null and void interest in swimming in pools, I was probably the lousiest guest they have that morning. The location of the resort too, within a quary site next to the deserted mancatian river, was a huge turn off. Making moods worst, I was so irritated with having to wait less than an hour to get in because of unnecessarily redundant entry checks and collection.
Entrance charges to the resort costs P120/head for 8am-5pm daytrip, and P150 for an overnight stay.
While waiting to get in, I noticed a streamer advertising their Zipline. The fact that there was a Zipline within my town was like a 10 positive points for interesting-ness J. Moving forward, we’ve parked the car and from there you can see the villas, cabanas, and it’s abundant greenery. Compared to the resorts in Baliti (San Fernando, Pampanga), Poracay is far tidy and zoned (I meant, cottages/villas/huts/amenities were systematically positioned). By then, the rating was already at ‘may be interesting’.
|the lolengs and the lagoon behind|
We got to our designated hut, unloaded our stuff, and fired up the coal. The nipa was the size of probably 2 meters by 2meters, a table within, with lights and electric sockets (While there’s a sign saying there is a charge for using electrical devices, no one seems to check . ) Each hut has it’s own shaded barbecue pit, and a faucet right behind. (According to Ivy’s brother Harlan who walked to the cashier upon entry, the cottage was P700.00. A bigger cottage, double the size of ours, is P1,000. We’ve also seen some Micromatic Umbrellas for the budget conscious and some halls for private functions. )
The huts behind us were named after the barangay’s of Porac. I felt happy about the nomenclature for it’s own way of promoting my town. I hung my hammock, and while there was already Ivy and her sister preparing the food, I chanced on a nap.
Thirty minutes past and food was ready. We munched on chicken and pork barbecues along with a soy dip with 4 extra hot chillies. After that lunch, since Ivy and her siblings are not really allowed to smoke, we had to excuse ourselves for a swim for them to be able to smoke; I don’t really have enough cigarette then so we walked to a convenience store within the resort to scout. The half pack Marlboro lights for P25. One cigarette for Joyce and Harlan, another one for me and Ivy. Joyce and Harlan took further tour while enjoying their smokey dessert while Ivy and I chose to jump into the water.
(Apart from cigarette, the store has ice cream, siomai, chips, cooking supplies, which even includes barbecue sauce brush, swimming attire and apparatus, souveneirs, and a restaurant sits next to the store).
The water was extra cold and it seems only a very minimal amount of chlorine has been dissolved. I’m supposing it was deep well water and each pool has a falls-like structure where the water falls towards the pool.
We also tried the other adult pool (all in all, i’ve spotted 2 adult, 5’5” pools plus 4 children’s, 2’ pools) but since it was quite elevated, the heat of the sun was burning up there.
For safety, there’s a designated lifeguard for every pool.
Atop the pool area is the Zipline and people from the pools would be cheering at the guest swinging from the line. Not sure if the cheerers were actually related or that they get stimulated at whatever they could spot from the ladies hung in there. A staff said the zipline costs P300 for a back and forth swing. On my estimate, the zipline is probably only 250 meters long..
Later in the afternoon, after the spaghetti snack prepared by Harlan, it rained very hard and thought it was the best time to try the lagoon. We hopped in a guest’s BALSA ride, snatched our Gilbeys Lime Mix, and went round and round. There are fishes in the lagoon and a board says fishing is actually allowed. I just wonder how these fishes would taste like as the lagoon is the last catch for the water flowing from a pool to another)
Just a little while later, it was past 5pm and we decided to wash and be ready for exodus. There were comfort rooms and separate shower rooms here and there, so you don’t really have to tire yourself and your probably bare feet, just to find one. The comfort rooms were good enough (I can stand being in the comfort/wash room for more than an hour); Nothing stingy. There were maintenance people assigned for each comfort room.
And, what I liked most, I got to meet Vanessa Due...my long lost classmate back in Elementary School whom I’ve long been hunting on facebook. I was too overwhelmed I forgot to get her contact details or even her facebook lookup name...dang!
My apology for having no pictures as I never thought I’d actually like it here...and so i did not bring a cam, other than the one on my phone!!!
For adventure seekers, game for treks and such, consider Miyamit falls in Porac