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Friday, May 16, 2014

MARAGUSAN: The Valley of Waterfalls and Springs



Maragusan, Compostela Valley settles amidst the grand mountains of Davao Region. This first class municipality is a home to tempting mountains, dozens of waterfalls and countless springs. This silent town, formerly San Mariano, has tons of tourist destinations to offer---manmade and natural. No wonder it is tagged as "THE SUMMER CAPITAL OF DAVAO REGION".



OFF TO MARAGUSAN
Barely 2 hours from the capital town of Nabunturan, the unpaved road to Maragusan is comparable to those of Ifugao and Mountain Province. Local bus lines and vans ply from Tagum to Maragusan. My first trip to Maragusan brought an impression of the place's silence, simplicity and peace.



I departed Nabunturan by 2 pm via Mencidor Bus Lines. We plied along the narrow dusty and muddy road with the refreshing view of the mountains side by side. We passed by the simple houses in the remote barangays. The happy people in their usual living are really an image of a rural scenario.  

Barely past 4 pm, I arrived in a humble town of Maragusan. I settled in Golden Place Lodge at its lowest priced room at P450.00 per night. It is strategically located at the heart of the municipality near the terminal, grocery shops, bank with ATM, public market and the town hall. Simple eateries are not hard to find. 

Without contact and itinerary, I headed to visit the tourism office the next day. The friendly staff suggested waterfalling adventure and contacted a local guide for me. 

And the adventure finally began... 


TAGBIBINTA FALLS

I and Jay took a habalhabal (P25.00/pax) to the entrance of Tagbibinta Falls in Brgy. Coronobe. Tagbibinta Falls has 3 series falls recommended for tourists. But I learned it has 13 series and 7 have been explored by locals. So I insisted to visit the 7 falls.


 The first tier is just right at the entrance, so accessible. Most of the locals who just want to cool down simply settle in this tier.



After the 1st tier, we trailed to the 7th tier. The trail was not easy. It extracted our sweat and tightened our chests. River trekking is but normal in waterfalling. The 7th tier is the least accessed by tourists due to its distance and difficulty. It is almost untouched.











The 6th tier is not so accessible. Rope is needed to rappel down. Really dangerous, Jay would not want to waste time in it. I just begged him to led me to the top of it, at least.
The top view of the sixth tier 

The 5th tier was just a dream. It was extremely dangerous to unequipped trekkers like us.
 
So we descended back to the 1st tier leading to the 2nd tier. The 2nd tier is not a vertical fall. It gently curtains a uniquely crafted rock.



 We continued to the 3rd tier passing through spiderman's trail clinging to the roots and vines along the cliffs. The 3rd tier is so beautiful, though not an impressive height. The cliff and the trees beside it further give it a marvelous look.


Right above the 3rd tier is the 4th tier. It was impossible for us to get closer since the only way is to rock climb through the 3rd tier. Seeing the upper part of the 4th tier was then enough for me.

We ate our trail foods and descended. 


MARANGIG FALLS

From Brgy. Coronobe, we hired another habalhabal (P25/pax) to take us to Brgy. New Albay. When we arrived at the site, a 300 meter river trek led us to Marangig Falls. The falls is not so high but beautiful. I never resisted its pool, which undressed and soaked me in. 





It was 2:30 pm and the rain was about to pour. We hiked back to the barangay and took a habalhabal (P30.00/pax) back to the town. I slept for the rest of the afternoon. At night, I strolled the small town and filled my tummy at the foodcourt.

 I DROOLED FOR THE MOUNTAINS

The next morning, the pestering rain hindered our plan to trek the overlooking site of Mt. Mabugnaw. The obstructing weather kept me drooling over the view of the alluring mountains. If only I had enough time, information and preparation, I would have conquered Mt. Candalaga.  



AT THE HAVEN'S PEAK 

Before taking a bus home, I trekked to HAVEN'S PEAK HIGHLAND RESORT. This overlooking resort is easily trekkable from the public market. It has function hall, restaurant and swimming pool. It has a dorm type accommodation at P400.00/pax/night. It also has tribal huts at P2,800.00/night good for a family. You may choose from T'boli Hut, Ifugao Hut, Bagobo Hut and Mansaka Hut. It also has tent rental with beddings ranging from 250 to 750. If you have your own tent, you only have to pay P150/night. 








OTHER POINTS OF INTEREST 

1. KANLAWIG HOT SPRING RESORT. This hot pool just beside the highway is ideal for relaxation and family bonding. It is a good place to experience the soothing therapeutic effect of hot bath. The resort offers rooms at P800.00 per night.





2. AGUAKAN COLD SPRING RESORT. This resort is equipped with natural cold swimming pools. It has a venue for parties and events. It offers an overnight stay for P650/night room for two.  

3. RAFFLESIA. The world's largest flower specie "Mira" is found in the foothills of Barangay New Albay. Blooming is expected every last week of May. 

4. PYAGSAWITAN FESTIVAL. A festival celebrated every November 25, the founding anniversary of Maragusan. It showcases the thanksgiving for the abundant harvest. One of the highlights is the "Indak-indak sa Kadalanan" street dancing competition.
  
5. MOUNT CANDALAGA.  This mountain is an extremely difficult destination for the climbers. It's usual route takes 3 days and 2 nights. It's definitely the main reason why I'm coming back to Maragusan.


Note: Have sufficient cash on hand. The only ATM (ONB) in Maragusan always runs out of cash and is always offline.  

HOW TO GET THERE:

There are vans ans buses traveling from Tagum City to Maragusan via Nabunturan. The bus fare of Mencidor Bus as of May 2014 is P80.00.

For further inquiries and travel assistance, please contact the Tourism Officer, MR. DENNIS RADIN at 09057151535.

2 comments:

  1. I was a starter blogger and very impressed with your blogs..

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, marj. with simple blog posts, you can inspire many people too...

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