Tag Archives: Mindanao Philippines

#289 Great Sta. Cruz Island

Great Sta. Cruz Island (to distinguish from Little Sta. Cruz Island) in Zamboanga province, Mindanao, southern Philippines, is best known for its pinkish sand beach. The unique color hue comes from coral bits washed up from the sea bottom.

On the island is a fishing village, a lagoon, and an old Muslim burial ground. Characterised by extensive and varied aquatic life, coral heads and rocks support a wide array of tropical fish. The island is ideal for swimming, skin/scuba diving, beachcombing, and sunbathing.

Facilities on the island include dressing rooms, toilets, picnic sheds, and cooking areas. As  a coral island, drinking water is not readily available in the island, and visitors are advised to take along drinking water and food. Wearing canvas or plastic shoes/slippers to protect the feet from sharp rocks and coral shards are also recommended.

Sta. Cruz Island is located some 15 minutes away, by an outrigger, motorised boad, from either the Lantaka Hotel or the Golf course beach in Zamboanga. It is only about 4 kilometers from the Zamboanga mainland. There are minimal entrance fees to the island.

Mabuhay ang Great Sta. Cruz Island!


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#204 Philippine Deep

The world’s second deepest spot underwater is in the Philippines. Also known as the Philippine Deep or the Mindanao Trench, this spot is about 34,440 feet (10,497 meters) below the sea level.

The Philippine Deep is in the floor of the Philippine Sea. The German ship Emden first plumbed the trench in 1927. In comparison, the world’s deepest part of the ocean is the Marianas Trench, which is over 11,000 meters below the seal level.

The Philippine Trench is the result of a collision of tectonic plates. The Philippine Sea Plate is subducting under the Philippine Mobile Belt at the rate of about 16 cm per year (from Wikipedia).

Long live Philippine marine life!


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# 179 Tinuy-an Falls

Tinuy-an Falls, Surigao

Tinuy-an Falls is a waterfall in Bislig City, Surigao del Sur in the southern Philippine island of Mindanao and is the city’s main tourist attraction.

The falls is approximately 55 metres (180 ft) high and touted as the Niagara Falls of the Philippines. Tinuy-an’s white water curtain flows in three levels and considered as one of the best waterfalls in the island because of its majestic and unique natural formation. Tinuy-an Falls’ fame has even caught interest outside the Philippines that a photo was once featured in the International Travel Magazine.

The falls magnificent cascades can be viewed in Borboanan, a one-hour ride from Mangagoy, Bislig’s commercial district. About 55 meters high and with a breathtaking width of 95 meters, it is said to be the widest in the country. The falls are also surrounded by centuries-old amazing giant trees, ferns and vines in a thick rainforest.  Visitors enjoy the islets in the swimming ground, where slippery logs are used for crossing to get a better view. Lucky visitors arriving at the right time can see a swath of rainbow that appears in the falls sometime between 9 to 11 a.m. (from Wikipedia).

Mabuhay ang Tinuy-an Falls!


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#163 Old Catarman Church Ruins

Old Catarman Church Ruins (also known as Guiob Church)  is located in the village of Bonbon, about 10 kms. from Catarman Poblacion in Camiguin Island, Mindanao, southern Philippines.

On May 1, 1871, the volcanic Mt. Daan erupted and the devastating eruption destroyed the original 16th Century Spanish settlement in Catarman. A portion of the town sank beneath the sea. After the eruption, the settlement moved to where the town center is presently located. Today, all that remains of old Catarman are the ruins of the ancient Spanish church, a convent and a bell tower.

The grass-covered ruins of adobe walls, belfry and convent are mute witnesses to the wrath of nature. Now under local park authorities, the place also gives a glimpse into the culture of Spanish-era Camiguin, one of the first Philippine islands visited by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan and colonised by Spanish settlers.

Mabuhay ang Old Catarman Church!

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#129 Tubaw

The tubaw is a colorful headwrap made mostly in Cotabato, Mindanao in southern Philippines, and the ethnic tribes who originally produce this colorful cloth are known for their fine weaving traditions.

The most finely-made tubaw are worn by the village elders and some patterns or motifs especially those woven by the best weavers in a village are accorded with meanings or were made to convey certain beliefs shared by the tribe. Intertwined patterns are said to connote the linked or connected existence of all living things on earth.

The tubaw’s intense colors are also popular that there was a time in the 1980s when the tubaw was mostly worn and made popular by activist students in protest rallies. Wearing the tubaw later entered mainstream street wear as a fashionable neck or head scarves used by young people.

Long live Philippine weaving traditions!

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#103 Philippine Eagle Center

Philippine Eagle Center

The Philippine Eagle Center (PEC), located in Malagos village, is about an hour drive from Davao City in Mindanao, southern Philippines, and can be reached either by private or public transport.

The center is home to 32 Philippine eagles, 16 of which are captive-bred. It also houses 10 other species of birds, four species of mammals and two species of reptiles. The center is tasked to protect the rare Philippine eagle and provides a sanctuary to Philippine eagles that were illegally captured.

The center used to be primarily a breeding and conservation facility, but has opened its doors to the viewing public for educational purposes. Simulating a tropical rain forest environment, the center offers the visitor a glimpse into the Philippines’s forest ecosystem. Although the exhibits are used primarily to help educate the Filipino people on conservation, the facility is also considered a major tourist attraction in Davao City with its beautiful gardens and scenery.

Mabuhay ang Philippine Eagle Center!

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#97 Lake Lanao

Lake Lanao or Ranaw is located in Lanao del Sur province, Mindanao, southern Philippines. With a surface area of 340 km². (131 square miles), it is known as the largest lake in Mindanao, and the second largest lake in the Philippines.

Lake Lanao is also considered as one of the 15 ancient lakes in the world.  Formed by the tectonic-volcanic damming of a basin between two mountain ranges and the collapse of a large volcano, Lake Lanao has a maximum depth of 112 meters, and an average depth of around 60.3 meters.

Four rivers feed the lake its only outlet is the Agus River, which flows southwest into Iligan Bay via two channels, one over the Maria Cristina Falls and the other over the Linamon Falls. A hydroelectric plant installed on the Lanao Lake and Agus River system generates 70% of the electricity used by the people of Mindanao.

Mabuhay ang Lake Lanao!

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