The flight to Busuanga Airport is crowded and hot because they leave the AC off in the plane to save fuel…or maybe simply because most of the travelers here would be wearing coats at the 20 – 22 degrees Celsius at which many American’s are used to setting their air conditioners. There is a transfer van from the Busuanga Lodge ready to take us from the airport to the lodge and their AC is running! The trip to the lodge is a little more than an hour. The road is gravel, in the process of being converted to concrete and of course everything I can see as we pass, next to the road, is dusty with yellow gravel dust. There is only minor evidence of on-going progress. The upgraded road should be great for travelers, business and residents alike when it is finished, but it doesn’t look like that will be soon, nor done with any sort of construction progress plan. We pass through extremely simple country with many tiny huts built of bamboo and leaves. Some are extraordinarily messy, others quite decorated in the Pinoy style with small plants in make-shift pots. Most all of them have pieces of clothing hung out to dry.
When we greet the guard and turn off the road into the entrance of the lodge things change abruptly and we see a large white washed building with other out-buildings, well tended and clean. The welcome music starts as soon as the van comes to a stop and we are greeted with a Palawan welcome song…similar to the greeting in El Nido. The sky is blue; dark blue with very few clouds and it looks like we’ve lucked out with the weather. The drink we are given is fruity and green. It’s very tasty and I go ahead and drink it all as the manager talks to us about the activities and the restaurant, making sure we know all about the possibilities they offer. There are, of course, lots of different island hopping excursions, snorkeling, diving and beach visits, including outrigger boats, power boat and jet skis.
The first day of island hopping, snorkeling and beaching takes us to Calumbuyan and Pass Island.
Swimming and sun makes me tired and hungry. Luckily, the lodge has just the thing to satisfy that.
The second day of snorkeling included the sunken Luzong Gunboat, the Coral Gardens around the pearl farms and Pass Island again for lunch.
Next – back to Manila