Have at you!

Pagsanjan Falls

Posted on: April 28, 2008

My muscles are sore. I’m sunburned. I’m happy!

I had the chance to join a one-day tour to visit the Pagsanjan Falls in Pagsanjan, Laguna yesterday. We left Manila at 7:30am and it took us 2 ½ hours to get to the place. I managed to read a couple of chapters off a book, sleep a few minutes, and watch several scenes from Live Free or Die Hard while on the bus. Once we arrived at the Kamalig Resort, we had to change into clothes which we wouldn’t mind getting wet in, donned our life vests, and off we go to see the Pagsanjan Falls!

It seems that the only route you can take in order to see the actual waterfall is by riding small boats manned by boatmen, or bankeros, through the Bumbungan River. The boats were manned by 2 boatmen, one in front and one at the rear end of the small boat. The boat can accommodate two to three tourists at one time and the trip took approximately 50minutes. I have to tell you that those bankeros have excellent levels of dexterity and stamina! They can maneuver your small boat against the currents, carry the actual boat with you guys in it, and steer by jumping from one rock to another…AND that’s all being done while they’re engaging you in small chitchat.

Upon reaching the actual Pagsanjan Falls, we paid a small fee and rode a raft so that we could go under the falls and into the small cave behind it. We had to hold on tight to a rope that was tied on the rocks while the raft was pulled by another Pagsanjeño, unless we plan to get ourselves carried away by the water when it hits us. I already felt the wind and spray of cold water even before we were under the actual falls, and I am not joking when I said it was COLD. Once I was directly under the falls, I could just imagine how destructive water could be. I couldn’t keep my eyes open and I had a slight difficulty with breathing (Don’t worry, I heard a number of people talking about experiencing the same thing). So my dear friends, if you’re not adventurous, or if you have a slight phobia of drowning or just not being able to breathe at all, I don’t suggest you give it a try. Trust me, hearing other people scream when they get near the actual falls wouldn’t help at all.

After those few seconds under the falls, we emerged from the cave, drenched from head to toe, with my teeth chattering like crazy. I felt exhilarated! After taking some photos, the Boyfriend and I returned to our small boat and our bankeros paddled, jumped, and carried us again for another 50minutes to get us safely back to the resort. Once back on solid ground at around 2 in the afternoon, I changed clothes and joined the rest of the Boyfriend’s family for late lunch.

In between naps taken on the bus on our way home, I was able to think about the things I saw and experienced in Pagsanjan. I enjoyed going through the river, passing through really narrow areas, encountering beautifully colored birds and dragonflies, observing intricately designed spider webs, etc. It’s really no wonder a lot of tourists are attracted to the Pagsanjan Falls. Just don’t expect to see a huge waterfall like the ones you see in movies or in National Geographic, because the one in Pagsanjan is really smaller. Still, it was obvious that a lot of people were awed by the place, especially the Korean and American tourists who were there too.

They say that when you pass under the actual Pagsanjan Falls, all bad luck is washed away and you become luckier. I wonder how much good luck is coming my way soon?🙂


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April 2008
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