On our last day, we wisely and foolishly decided to finally visit Kawasan Falls, located in the town next to Moalboal, Badian. The last time we were in Moalboal, everyone was telling us to go to Kawasan Falls. But not being a big waterfalls fan, it was never high on our priority list. But wisely, we finally relented; and foolishly because we put it off until the very last minute. We had to wake up extra early to be able to make it back in time for the check out (lunch time), and boy, did we misjudge the travel time. The tricycle driver told us it would take about 40 minutes to get there. NOT! It was a good hour and so-and-so minutes!
Once you get there, you “have to” get guides to take you to the falls, although seriously you don’t need guides because there’s just one trail that leads straight to the falls. But anyway, I guess it’s part of the deal. Plus, it’s okay because one guide volunteered to carry my heavy tripod for me. The initial panic that set in because we were off-sked so early in the day, soon turned into a more serene demeanor since the short 15-20 minute trek was really pleasant. The babbling brook (or stream or creek or rivulet) is always on one side and the gurgling sound it makes immediately puts you at ease. And we were told that during rains, no one is allowed on the trail because the water overflows and sinks the whole place! We were also glad that we went on a Tuesday morning, so very few people were expected to visit.
When we finally got there, the falls did not disappoint. It was majestic and quite beautiful to behold. Apparently this was just the first of 3 falls. The one at the bottom is the largest, and the higher you go, the smaller the falls and the purer the water. In fact, they say that the water at the source, the topmost falls, is supposedly so clean that you can drink as much as you want without fear of contracting any disease or parasites. Keyword: SUPPOSEDLY. But we never got to the other 2 falls because it would entail further trekking and we just didn’t have the time.
But of course, the more downstream you go, the dirtier the water gets. In fact, not far from the main falls, I caught this laundry scene. I hope they just got water and will rinse elsewhere, because it would be a shame to pollute the clear waters with detergent and dirty soap suds, carrying libag and other sundry bodily grime.
The main event is the balsa or raft ride. Basically you rent it for about 300 pesos, and they’ll bring you to the falls as you are bathed, or more like pummeled, by the hammering waters of the falls. Like I said, I’m not a big fan of waterfalls, but I must admit, it was loads of fun once you’re there! My main problem was, I told myself I wouldn’t swim. I love swimming in the salty sea brine, but I’m not into swimming in fresh water like in lakes or rivers. So in short, I didn’t bring any swimwear. Everyone said I could just wear my boxers, if I didn’t mind parading my wet look once we go under the falls. What the heck.
I had to use my mobile phone inside a waterproof case to take this picture. Of course I had to edit the photo first. I refuse to post nipple and belly button shots of myself, especially my revealing choice of swimwear. The grimace was because the water felt like toppling bricks, given the intense momentum of the raging waters. The water falls from a great height, so it’s quite painful to bear the full brunt of the falls. My skin was red with the pelting it received, but admittedly, it was really fun. When you’re in a place like this, you become a kid again for a couple of minutes.
Inasmuch as we would’ve loved to stay and swim and lounge around and have lunch and stuff, we had to skedaddle because we were a good 4-5 hours away from the airport and we needed to hustle. So we dried off, and trekked back to where the trikes are parked. The stroll back was just as pleasant, but there were substantially more tourists going up as there were going down. Had we gone a little later, we wouldn’t have enjoyed as much with all those people there.
I’m glad we went despite the hectic trip home. I usually just like taking pictures of waterfalls, not really swimming in them. But after that, I have a renewed appreciation of waterfalls and it’s infinite pleasures. I’d like to go back, next time to trek to the 2 other falls, and to frolic longer under the falling waters of Kawasan.