Talisay Travel Blog› entry 3 of 4 › view all entries
June 14th, 2009 – by: JeAr
Good Morning, Manila!
After a quick shower, I went straight to McDonald's and found the very sleepy Matt and Najiah, the slightly sleepy Reychel, and a new addition to the group, Jerry. After a few more minutes, Aurelie, Winnie, Jegs, and RJ arrived from their hostel. Then came Jenny. Since there's still 2 more people missing, the rest of the group decided to have a quick breakfast.
Shortly afterward, Jenneth arrived. Now where the hell is Mike? We'd been texting him the whole time, without any reply. When he was the only one missing, we tried calling him up, but his phone was off. We decided to just wait til 5AM before we decide whether to leave him or not. What a diva. We should have left him. Lol.
Finally, the diva arrived with well-prepared and pre-meditated excuses for being uber-late.
Good Morning, Taal!
I stayed awake the entire trip, as were most of the guys. Our source of entertainment was Jegs, who willingly took on the role by trying to speak in Tagalog. To be honest, he still has miles to go, but I'm giving him an A for effort. Not bad for an old man, hehehe.
Aside from Jegs, the scenery along the way got our attention as well. We passed through the scenic city of Tagaytay before taking the ever-winding road downhill. Glimpses of Taal Volcano and the surrounding lake greeted us.
Our jump-off point to the Taal Volcano, which is in the middle of Taal Lake, was the Taal Yacht Club. Sounds fancy, eh? Sadly, it's just a name. I was kinda expecting a royal treatment for us. Oh well. Since we got there pretty early, and without prior reservation, we had to wait for quite some time before the people there were able to organize a trip for us, boat, guide, and all. Each boat can carry up to 6 passengers (plus 2 boatmen), so we had to split the group in 2. Of course, my group rocks, although the other one ain't that bad, either. Hehehe.
We reached the volcanic island within 20 minutes or so.
If the scenery from the boat was nice, the scenery along the path to the crater was even more spectacular! As we went higher, we had a 360-degree view of the whole place. We were literally surrounded by nature, from the walls of greenery to the clear-blue sky to the immense lake surrounding the volcano and the distant mountains beyond, some still covered with morning mists. Even the pathway looked scenic, and reminded me again of the Fellowship of the Ring and their journey to Mordor.
It being my first time in Taal, I unleashed my inner camwhore. Thankfully, I was with fellow camwhores as well, so by the time that we're done camwhoring, the semi-camwhores of the group had already reached the end of the trek. So, we had to hurry and endure the last, exhausting climb to the summit. When we got there, all we could say was WOW! Sweaty travelers everywhere! Kidding.
The main crater was breathtaking! My jaw literally dropped open, and believe me, it only happens when I'm perving on a hottie. That's how beautiful the crater was! I was so overwhelmed that I wanted to jump into it, but since I don't know how to swim, I thought of pushing Matt and Najiah into it instead. But I didn't want to miss out, so I didn't. It would have been an entertaining sight, though.
After resting for a bit, we did a few more minutes of hiking to go to another spot where we had a different vantage point of the crater and the scenery beyond. We spotted a few steams coming out of the lake below and the rocks where we're standing - a friendly reminder to us that under the calm surface of the crater is a monster waiting to come out. And whoa, crows flying above us. Okay fine, we get the message!
A thousand photos (and some videos) later, we're ready to leave. We're starting to feel really hungry and sticky and dirty, so without further ado, we said goodbye to Taal and headed back to where we came from. Going downhill was a lot easier, needless to say, so we all took it in stride. Well, except for Jegs because he stubbed his toe along the way despite the relatively easier way down. Blood everywhere, jeez. Such a clumsy Pole.
As soon as we're done washing up back at the yacht club (which by then was already abuzz with tourists) and inside the van, we asked the driver to take us back to Tagaytay for lunch. Our minds were preoccupied by the thought of food, and it almost overshadowed our amazing experience at the volcano. Okay, I'm speaking for myself here, hihihi.
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