Living the Dream: Kalanggaman Island

My first full day in Malapascua was a dream. I woke up around 7 AM and headed down to the beach for a breakfast place. I had a delicious veggie omelet with a side of fresh mango and pineapple, this mean was on the expensive side compared to what I had been paying, but it was right on the beach so I decided to treat myself ($6 meal). While I was eating a guy from my hostel in Moalboal came by, such a small world. He ate with me and we chatted talked about our travels. He told me about his thresher dive, and how amazing it was. He paid around 1,700 peso ($32) and I remembered a company bartered down to 1,200 yesterday including rental, so I went back and booked that for the next morning. Marine fee, gear, boat ride, everything just $24 and it was just me and my divemaster, what a deal.

Anyways, my plan for the day was head on a boat trip to Kalanggaman Island. It was a pretty pricey day, but included lunch and it was a full day adventure. I think I aid around $20, which I would definitely send in the US. It was about an hours boat ride to the island. I talked to all of the other travelers and got to know them. There were two girls who were also on my bus to Maya port, and they were 22 from Germany and really cool to hang out with. There were also a few other solo travelers, although they all had friends they were meeting up with later in the week.

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The weather was phenomenal, with vivid blue skies and gorgeous clouds. I spent the remainder of the boat ride in the front with my legs dangling over the side. It was so much fun and I loved watching the flying fish soar in front of the boat, such a cool sight. Once we arrived at the island, my jaw dropped. The sandbar was a gorgeous white color, and the ocean was 1000 hues of blues. It blew my mind, so worth the money! The seas were calm and reflecting the fluffy clouds, and there weren’t many tourists on the island because it was low season. As soon as I set foot in that clear water, I felt like I was home. An overwhelming feeling of serenity washed over me and I was moved with emotion. I actually think I cried a little. It is so amazing what nature can do to a person. I never knew laces like this existed outside of screensavers and desktop backgrounds. Which is saying a lot because I think I live in one of the most beautiful places in the world.

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I wandered the island, soaking in sun and the beauty of my surroundings. When everyone else rested under the shade of the palms, I put on my mask and took a plunge into the sea. At first, I only saw seagrass with occasional crabs and urchins, which I didn’t really mind. But a little boy who had been working on the boat came into the water and started to swim with me. Eventually he lead me to a beautiful coral reef ecosystem. And we spent hours pointing out different fish, clams, and critters to each other. I had the time of my life with this total stranger. We practiced free diving, and I let him use my fins to see how far he could swim underwater. I taught him how to blow bubble “O’s” underwater, which made his face light up with joy. Before I knew it, it was 1:00 and the crew was waiving me into shore to have lunch. I joined the others at a table in the shade, about 12 of us total, and we enjoyed some fish, chicken, and rice. I ate fast so I could get back in the water (typical). I brought my gopro out and attempted to capture the beautiful island, clear water, surreal clouds, and white sand. It is hard for any pictures to do it justice, but I tried. I dove and jumped off the boat with the rest of the crew, and shared my mask and fins with them, and they love it. Soon, it was already 3:30 and we head to head back home. A thunder storm loomed in the distance and lightening lit u the sky. It made me realize how perfect a day I got on Kalamaggaman island. The vivid colors and blue sky made for an ideal day. By the time I got home I was sunburnt and tired. I ate at Ging Gings again for dinner, this time trying shrimp fried rice and some fresh mangoes. YUM. I then headed back to my hostel, where it was just me and one other solo traveler from Australia. She was really cool and was on the island to dive as well. For the remainder of the night I just showered, reviewed some of the photos I took, and swung in a hammock, relaxing listening to reggae music with the hostel owner. How could life get any better than this?

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