Re-Discovering Talicud Island
May 4, 2012
LIFE ON A BASKET
( A lifestyle column )
The calmness of the sea leads me to complete peace and anticipation.
As we rode the RDR Sea Patrol boat, excitement grew to heaps of adventurous instincts. The sea is so inviting and it gave me a certain freedom from all stress that envelopes my present life. I knew, as the boat propeller strode it way against the waves, this trip will make me re-discover an island spoken about, yet still undescribed in the best possible way.
The sun is up, with powerful rays that prick skin ( too bad I forgot my banana boat sunblock, lol) But as the rays kiss the waves, one would think that God is so good to ever provide us with such creation!
As I gaze around, the peak of Mt. Apo, the tallest mountain in the country caught my eye. I could remember being a member of a mountaineering club would mean you’ll have to reach Mt. Apo in your countless sojourns. With clouds that shroud its crest, Mt. Apo becomes more interesting from afar.
This trip to Talicud Island is indeed worth every effort. Traversing the sea that divides Davao City from Island Garden City of Samal is like sipping hot coffee in the morning, it just gets better as you reach the middle.
The RDR Sea Patrol moved against the sparkling blue waves, creating soft white splashes that tell me we are moving on moderate speed, just in tune with our ocular inspection of the the blues and greens around.
In the middle of our sea sailing, I ran out of the boat, to the mini deck, to marvel at the rock formations, just like that of El Nido, Palawan. These formations situated around the exact island of Talicud may be smaller in height but with intensive development and nurture, they will eventually be “eye candy” to tourists and locals who wish to commune with nature! It’s such a wonderful sight of browns and greens blended altogether. With these rock, soil and stone formations, sitting beside the cool sea, with shores that tempted me to jump off and swim, this island has a brilliant story to tell the meticulous traveler.
Curved circles and ovoid shapes, looking like small cavelets or tunnels are also an attraction. My digicam has been handy in my quest to capture every detail of the island. I have vividly captured the scenes of this island that I will officially call, in my own word, “Terrific Talicud”!
In a span of 80 minutes, Sta. Cruz wharf became clearer in view. Every scene became bigger and bolder in the eyes.
Upon arrival at barangay Sta. Cruz’ wharf, I could see so much going on. People from all walks of life and income walk to and fro the small quay. What struck my attention as I unbounded the sea boat is the ongoing construction of that 90 degrees road going up to the mainstream of the island barangays. It was eye-catchy when seen from the sea, as well as it speaks of comfort for travel, thanks to the responsive efforts of Gov. Rodolfo del Rosario of Davao del Norte.
The actual land adventure started as we rode the “habal-habal” (single motor ready for passengers), setting on a 90 degrees road, my first time ever. Not that I don’t trust the driver, it dawned to me, I was gonna go up a road so steep, aboard a single motorcycle at that, lol!
After feeling perplexed, my adrenalin went back to normal level as we reached the main road that connected the barangays. I started to relax and as the air filled my lungs, I started to appreciate the fact that this island may be very distant from my city life, it will offer lessons and reasons for exploration.
There may have been hesitance, but as our travel progressed, I began to loosen up. Unbuckling myself from the city girl persona, I went in to my cowgirl feel. To put myself in the realms of Terrific Talicud.
A writer like me would not give up on the idea that I can do a good piece of reading material in here.
Traversing the island roads, which I describe as not dusty, the road is fair-colored and plain, less humps or rocky feel, just right for vehicles to move around. Although there are buses who can bring visitors to destinations, the most common mode of transportation is still the “habal-habal”.
Surrounded by coconut and fruit-bearing trees, nipa huts and typical houses, the barangays have their own personality and spirit. However,the people of the island seem to be glued to the culture they were born to. But I must say, they are open to developments and innovations for as long as it will not ruin their natural resources.
Fortunately, we have become witness to the barangay fiesta of Sta. Cruz, typical yet festive in nature. Food and games that delight the folks of almost all the barangays.
On an upclose observation, the island has a vast forest reserve waiting to be explored, nurtured, developed and appreciated. Not only for tourism but for livelihood.
We have entered beach resorts that speak not only of fun, swimming and adventures, but of tranquil getaways. Bring a book while basking in the sun, with your summer hats on, stare at small waves while plunging yourself in the cool waters, walk by the shore bare-footed and get as much clean air or just be with nature, feel the moment and bond with loved-ones.
The purpose of our visit has expanded from just ocular inspection to a more profound admiration of the island as whole.
Seeing the pristine shores, almost that of Boracay, unspoiled white sand, virgin nooks & untouched rock formations makes me feel at home. At home with nature’s premises, that is.
Because there is more to discover, from beaches , lagoons, and caves, the free-spirited traveler will indulge himself will cosset himself to nature’s bounty as well.
The development of Terrific Talicud as a more progressive and enterprising site for livelihood encompasses the goal to make it a remarkably extraordinary tourist destination.
These days, when pollution and rowdy city life engulfs our whole being, there is a better way to de-stress ourselves. Or shall I say, detoxify externally.
Terrific Talicud’s lure may be subtle but it is far more natural than a sip of whiskey in that fabled city bar.
With aggressive efforts from the provincial gov’t of Davao del Norte and the resounding plans of Gov. del Rosario for the island, Talicud Island will no longer be left at the rear part, nor will be spelled backwards.
The island will soon be a frontier of tourism. Immaculate and preserved yet will serve the purpose of appreciating God’s gift of flora and fauna.
I will describe the island so sincerely as I finally move back to the RDR Sea Patrol that will bring us back to city life…
Terrific Talicud Island has a lush vegetation, verdant flora, flourishing livelihood that, when managed responsibly will generate income, not only to each barangay, but to every local resident.
Terrific Talicud has one of the best white sand shores that spell pleasure, recreation and bonding. It is a sanctuary, defined and purified by its serenity.
Terrific Talicud is very popular as a scuba diving destination. What with the crystal clear waters that surround the island, one will definitely be lured to its portals. Two of which are Mansud Wall and Coral Gardens. There are several small resorts lining the exterior, including Isla Reta and Bali Hai.
Terrific Talicud has a wide variety of soft and hard coral gardens that are home to numerous exotic small tropical fishes. Not only small tropical fishes but larger marine life can also be found , like barracuda, tuna and jacks. Divers can also see fusiliers, sea horse, morays, sea urchins, garden eels, wrasse and parrotfish.
Terrific Talicud is filled with trees of various kinds, some a hundred-year-old and others are so majestic, you can take photos abruptly. The versatile & adaptable traveler will instinctively create ways to make his trip more enjoyable and pleasant.
Terrific Talicud has caves ready to be explored and redefined.
Talicud Island has a wide variety of soft and hard coral gardens that are home to numerous exotic small tropical fishes. Not only small tropical fish, larger marine life can also be found like barracuda, tuna and jacks. Divers can also see fusiliers, sea horse, morays, sea urchins, garden eels, wrasse and parrotfish.
Boats for Talicud leave every morning at 6am, 7am , 9 am and 10am (P50-P80) from Santa Ana wharf in Davao. While it only takes a ten-minute boat ride to get to Samal Island, the trip to Talicud Island takes around either 30 to 80minutes, depending on which part you will dock, but it is well worth the trip.
Terrific Talicud has the natural resources, that when nurtured and given time to burgeon, conscientiously utilized, brings forth a more distinct and beautiful description and narrative of the island.
Terrific Talicud may be at the back of this sea I am now traversing, but I believe that in time, it shall prosper into a tourist haven that Davao del Norte will be very proud of.
For now, I rest the ink of my pen as I let my eyes savor the fleeting moments of seeing the shape of the island in mid-sea.
Let the waves carry my thoughts to the readers and bring them to a realization that Talicud island is far more than terrific, it is tremendously-recommended to re-discover.
Let my readers appreciate what mother nature can offer and guard it with our strength, from unruly use and abuse.
Parting words from a writer who finished this piece in an hour, I have re-discovered a jewel in the sea, and in it, I shall come back to claim my own piece sanctuary./pamelagaybangadperales.may2012
FYI: It is nice to note that in addition to the main island, IGaCoS (Island Garden City of Samal) also has 7 islets that surround it. The largest islet, known as Talicud Island, is about 2,500 meters from Poblacion, Kaputian. The other six (6) islets are Big Liguid (28,092 has.), Small Liguid (4.5 has.), Arboles Shoal, otherwise known as Sanipaan (3.125 has.), Small Malipano (.1595 has.), Dela Paz (1.378 has.), Big Malipano (8.2858 has.) and Wishing Islet (700 sq.m.), respectively.