The Way to Initiate the Novice


I’m with some novice trekkers, not that I mind, it is an easy trek after all.  I am thrilled, in fact, to have them experience the joy of summiting after an uphill struggle that seemed never-ending and pointless, and to realize, after all that trouble, that the reward is usually at the peak.

Named the 3rd best beach and island of the Philippines by CNN Go April of last year and just like that, Palaui caught my attention.  I’ve been going back and forth to Sta. Ana for a few years now, but Palaui was never on my radar.


Maybe because it takes more work to get there and that includes braving the (sometimes) treacherous sea.


A protected area, the island lies between the South China Sea and the Pacific Ocean.  It boasts of a nice long stretch of white pebble beach, abundant marine life, a century old lighthouse, a waterfalls hidden somewhere and a scenic rugged terrain.  It is pretty much uninhabited, with only a small community living in the island.  No electricity and accommodation to speak of.


So one fine day, along with the same people I spent several Sta. Ana weekends together, we took off from the shores of Sun City in San Vicente and headed to Palaui.  An hour, perhaps more on the boat and we arrived on the island.


We paid for a guide and started our trek on the beach,


which lead to a short forest walk before we emerged on the other side to beautiful rolling hills reminiscent of Batanes.



We then climbed (more than) some steps that would eventually lead to the summit where Cape Engaño stands.



The view along the way took my breath away.


It may not be the best beach as it is not fine sand as that of Boracay or even Palawan


but the island dazzles at every turn,



from the beach to the top of the lighthouse… all I can say was SPECTACULAR.  And the new recruits were enjoying themselves too.


Not that difficult to get to, we took the Lugunzad trail, which took all of just 30 minutes from beach to lighthouse.


There is a waterfall somewhere, said our guide, but all this walking made the others hungry.  And so the initiation is over, we will take baby steps and insist on the waterfalls some other time.


At a beach named Gotan, lunch was already being prepared.   A private beach, we had to arrange to use a few days earlier.  We had a sumptuous meal of everything grilled.


There, we lounged around, enjoyed each other’s company amidst beautiful Agoho trees.   That’s how to initiate novice trekkers.  Yes?

This entry was posted in Cagayan Province, Palui Island, Philippines, Sta. Ana and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to The Way to Initiate the Novice

  1. fcg says:

    Wow, what an amazing place. Someday, I’ll be a trekker too (fingers crossed)! 😀


  2. Andrea says:

    yes i believe you Jenn, your beautiful photos are enough evidences! Some of my friends were there too, but I am not as adventurous in rough waters though. Sabtang and Siquijor waters are enough for me, only these distances please!


  3. Ebie says:

    OMG! The lush greenery are so inviting, very clean and well kept nature;’s hideaway! What fun!


  4. Boom & Gary says:

    Stunning area!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.


  5. artmusedog says:

    Fun time in an amazing place and Magnificent photography ~

    A Creative Harbor) aka ArtMuseDog and Carol ^_^


  6. Fun60 says:

    Something new around every corner. What a dream of a place.


  7. sylviakirk says:

    What a fantastic place it is!! Love your captures, Jenn! Thanks for sharing the beauty! Enjoy your week!


  8. ewok1993 says:

    i love the sceneries. i must go back to pi for some home-cooking beach time.


  9. Luna Miranda says:

    i’ve been to aparri but not to sta. ana. a group of friends were there last week and i was told one of the beautiful beaches in Sta. Ana is now privately-owned (by JPE).:( i think it’s a disgrace that the beautiful places and islands are owned by private individuals who have money and power.


    • Jenn says:

      You are so very right. Life isn’t fair, is it? I also heard that many beautiful islands in Palawan are being sold to either private individuals or resort establishments. The more reason to get out there and explore the world before everything beautiful gets commercialized.


  10. Hi! How do I join your treks? 🙂 Would love to try this out!


  11. Dennis says:

    It’s certainly a gem up north just by looking at your photos! The hour-long or so boat journey isn’t something I would mind – except thinking this part of the archipelago gets the brunt of many a typhoon.


    • Jenn says:

      Yes it is and quite unfortunate that because of many typhoons that hit this part, it is really not in many travelers’ radar.


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