Cawnie is my friend from work who just underwent her first ever camping trip last weekend. I was with her for the experience and it was just as memorable for me.
Our destination was one of my favorites – Anawangin Cove in San Antonio, Zambales. With us were several people from my outdoor group from work. We were divided into three batches, each leaving Manila in different schedules. Our trio comprised of my cheerful friend Connie and eternally sour Anthony left at 5:30 AM from Victory Liner Cubao and by 12 noon, our group had already reached the cove – that’s after a four hour bus ride to Olongapo, 45 minutes bus to San Antonio, 20 minutes trike ride to Pundakit and lastly a 30 minute boat ride to my beloved cove.
Though it’s already my sixth visit to Anawangin, I still had a lot of firsts:
1. First ever camping trip with Connie and Anthony
2. First time to go “snorkeling” in the river – Yes river! I didn’t know there were a lot of fishes there. We saw some colorful and interesting species – one type we saw was this adorable box fish which looked like a small tilapia that swallowed a rat.
3. First time I saw a boat get turned upside down by the powerful Pundakit waves. The boat was on its way to the shore to pick us up when it capsized. It took another 20 minutes for them to set up another boat and for us to trek to the other side of the beach while lugging our heavy bags to avoid the strong waves.
4. First time to visit Pundakit Falls (actually, I'm not sure if that's its real name, I forgot to ask our boatman)
5. First time to use my new green hammock – finally! Yay! I bought it a few months ago and I’ve been dying to use it. I had this fantasy of lying on that hammock while sipping cold lemonade while in Anawangin Cove. Well, that fantasy finally came true – except that I wasn’t sipping lemonade – I was munching on seaweed while staring at the trees, feeling the wind on my body. It was heavenly!
Our group went home Sunday after lunch with huge smiles on our faces and distressed spirits – even Anthony was able to release a smile when he was there. I was especially glad that everything went well because it was Connie’s first camping trip and she’s just getting acquainted to the world of backpacking.
View of the shore
Dinner and Socials with the rest of the group
Some Notes When Visiting Anawangin Cove:
1. Whatever you bring into the island, please take it back with you. Do not leave your garbage with them because the caretakers just burn them or bury them in a compost.
2. Please remember that it’s not a resort. Please respect the quietness of the place and the privacy of others.
3. Forget your cellphone because there’s no cellphone signal – no electricity either.