As I mentioned in the previous post, our flight which was supposed to be at six in the morning was rescheduled at 10 am. We arrived in the capital town of Basco, 30 minutes before noon and with the overcast skies and chilly weather we knew that we were really in the country's northernmost province. Batanes was no longer on my mind, let the fun begin!
First Stop: Hiro's Cafe
Since we arrived close to lunch time, stopping at Hiro's Cafe for our much needed nourishment was very much welcomed by our group of five. The Gay Back Packer and Silent Mike were still in Manila and would just join the group on the second day.
Hiros' Cafe is owned and managed by the very friendly and oozing with boundless energy, Ms. Lydia Roberto. A very busy lady, she took the time to welcome all the guests who were also staying at the Batanes Seaside Lodge.
|Steamed Dibang (Flying fish) and Beef and Camote Fries|
|Hapa, the Ivatan style laing (taro stem and leaves cooked in coconut milk)|
Next Stop: The Fountain of Youth
With our stomachs filled to the brim (parang balde lang), we wasted no time and immediately went to our first destination, Racuh-a-Idi, where the Fountain of Youth is located. Bless, the entrepreneurial Travelista, quipped that we should have brought small bottles so we can take some of the water and sell it back in Manila.
Our van took us to Sitio Diura, a fishing village located in Mahatao, Batan Island. It was quite surprising to see people greeting us even though we were complete strangers. I guess they are already used to seeing tourists but it was a welcome change from the snobbery of urbanites. The van stopped at the edge of the cemented road so we knew that it was time to do some trekking. Fountain of Youth here we come.
Finally, after 15 minutes of trekking and with overcast skies, the chilly weather and our kindred spirits guiding our way, we arrived at the so-called fountain.
My regret was that I failed to drink the water, I could have gone back to my seventeen year old self. On second thought maybe that was not a good idea.
We took some cliche shots (as Journeying James likes to say it) and had our first piktyur piktyur session in Batanes. It was a nice way to start the tour and we were obviously craving for more.
(to be continued)