For most, Africa may be all about the mammalian big 5 – elephant, lion, buffalo, rhinoceros and leopard. But to the mix, I throw in wonder, amazement, absolute serenity and beauty with a splash of savage and healthy dose of honesty, at least at Inyati. South Africa is a surreal backdrop of uninterrupted sky. Where sunsets linger for a good hour and a half, as though mother nature takes her time to bask in her beauty. The blue of day slowly sheds its skin to reveal hues of lavender, crimson, jade, salmon and lilac. The sun hangs low on the horizon and casts a copper glow on everything within reach.
My family and I spent 6 days in the African bush, in a lodge called Inyati, which was a recommendation by Taga Safaris. I’ll explain more about the lodge in my next post (: For now, here’s what I saw in my first 24 hours on safari. Enjoy!
Like I said before, I never was a fan of the beach. But then again I’ve never been to Bali, nor Koh Samui, nor Boracay. I wasn’t sure if I was hesitant or frightened. There were butterflies in my tummy just thinking about having to wear a swimsuit, baring my pallid white skin in the sun AND engaging in some form of sport that is not as easy as sun tanning.
The journey to there started from Clark, where we took a swift AirAsia domestic flight in the evening to Kalibo, followed by a 1h 45min bus ride to Caticlan, and another 15min ferry to Boracay. It was a little harsh. Think narrow, meandering roads with low light then choppy seas at an old jetty, but when we docked at Boracay we were instantly uplifted. The shallow waters were blue even at night! Now that’s something.
In the morning, an outrigger boat took us out for snorkeling and island hopping. It was my first time snorkeling. I didn’t even attempt to hold my breath to go deeper into the 4m deep water, I was just bopping along the surface. Still I marveled at the corals and the fish. Every few meters a thought bubble went off in my head like a child learning new words – Nemo! Dory! Coral! Urchin! Wow!
I was a little reluctant to get out of the water. I never imagined myself to like it so much! But next we went island hopping, and landed on Puka Beach, where you can find lots of puka shells. However a few of us were more interested in the blue, blue water, sitting along the shore and having the waves crash onto us. That is just splendid.
My threshold for outdoor activities ends about…. here. (And so did my immune system that day.) If it suits your fancy you can busy yourself with more land and sea sports like diving, cliff diving, ATV riding, jet-skiiing, banana boating, etc. I was more interested in strolling the streets and digging in on the grilled seafood and barbecued meats that Boracay is famous for. We got to choose from the fresh catch at the local market, then bring it to a nearby restaurant to cook in their local fashion. That was satisfying.
I assume it’s not a beach holiday until you see the sun set over the water, so I headed to the White Beach to do just that. Turns out about five thousand other people thought the same. The beach was insanely crowded but just walk some and you’ll find your own little space. It is called White Beach because the sand is super fine (there’s a vast difference between Puka beach and here, and of course, Sentosa), and super white, and apparently never is scorching even in the afternoon sun.
When you get away from the beach and resorts, you’ll see some locals and also the ethnic Ati people of the island still around, some selling anything from fish to souvenirs on the road side, others performing for tips or begging, and little kids scampering around. They’ve got an otherworldliness to them – not ethereal, but real.
The best time to visit Boracay for the clearest, bluest waters and fine weather. You’ve just got a few weeks to plan possibly the first getaway of the year. So head over here to book that flight now!
Check out the pics we posted while lapping up the salty seas, either on Instagram, #airasiasgcrk, or just click here.
It’s been a whirlwind, to describe mildly, the month I’ve had. And Audi Fashion Festival whizzed by in a roller coaster blur, and has highlighted to me my severe lacking in organization skills and disdain for emails. In any case, just wanted to give a shout out to everyone who sent me off and sent their well-wishes for my trip.
Pakkee, Dinie and Greg, couldn’t send me off at the airport, so Paragon had to do. 😀
After a short stop-over at Narita, Tokyo. A bowl of airport udon that I paid waay too much money for. And nearly getting sucked into their souvenir shop for over-priced matcha kit-kats. I’m safely landed in New York City.
Just wanted to drop a quick update to say that I’m back from the land of the rising sun, back from Mount Fuji, sushi, cat cafes, bright neon lights, pachinko, boots and fake eyelashes.
The weather warranted layers upon layers of clothing. And I did mostly sight-seeing rather than shopping.
Can’t wait to go back with more shopping allowance 😀
More photos coming soon.
This December will be my first time at the land of the rising sun. I am beyond myself in excitement to see, hear, smell, taste, feel, live and experience Tokyo first-hand.
And because I’m an absolute noob, I’m wondering do you have any recommendations??? 😀