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Puerto Princesa

posted on 2013-08-16 20:05:49 in Philippines

It was nice to have electricity all night and so I left the AirCon on all night. Surprisingly, when I woke up I felt quite cold but I did manage to sleep the whole night. Maybe I am used to being warm now. The morning started very dismally with heavy rain and dense cloud cover, partway through eating breakfast the clouds brightened and the rain eased back. By 10am it had stopped altogether.

Breakfast in the hotel was very basic, I was given the continental breakfast without being asked. I had a cold fried egg, some sweet fried pork. A bit like takeaway sweet and sour without the sour and sugar instead of pineapple with some bread and “sugar free” jam if that is at all possible. They also gave me some “Dari Creme” it looked like butter and came in a paper wrapper like butter, so I thought I would give it a go. I didn’t taste anything like butter and either it will take a lot to get used to the taste or I will avoid tomorrow. The taste however, did make me curious, so I checked the wrapper for the ingredients. The first one, coconut or palm oil with buttermilk down in 3rd place, no wonder it didn’t taste like butter.

Young Croc

With the weather so poor I decided to join a city tour for the afternoon, this would at least give me a chance to get out and explore without too much hassle. The van collected me from the hotel soon after lunch and our first destination was the local crocodile farm. This place served as a multipurpose venue for education, rehabilitation for injured wildlife, home for captured crocs and a hatchery. The young reptiles are grown for supplying the market place with skins for bags and shoes etc and for meat as well. The young crocs were kept in small tanks a few in each box depending on their size. Before we went into the hatchery we were warned not to put hands over the side because the crocs will jump. Looking at the size of the boxes I thought no way will they reach the top, they are being over protective of the guests. While I was leaning over a tank, well above I might add, I got the shock of my life when a snapping jaw headed towards my camera lens. These feisty young beasts certainly can jump, with extreme speed, agility and height. Be warned if a guide tells you “keep hands away” they mean it!!!

Next we went up Bakers Hill to a viewpoint and visit a bakery. With such low cloud and poor visibility the viewpoint was a bit of a waste of time but still good to get an appreciation of the surroundings. The bakery also had a shop, restaurant and gardens where they had fun characters scattered around. This was a big hit with the locals rushing to have their pictures taken with the celebrities like, Marilyn Munroe, Snow White and even Shrek! Of course I was more interested in making pictures of the rain.

rain again

Have you ever tried Coron weaving? I hadn’t until I walked into the little factory and immediately was targeted by one of the operators. I think he chose me because I was the only non-Filipino in our tour group. Coron is strands of dried grass, which is coloured. These strands are threaded between threads and squashed together. Now with a name like Threadgold you would have thought I could do it quite easily, not so, I was all fingers and thumbs trying to thread the grass and my legs were too long for the pedals. Yes my little legs too long!

Cliff Weaving

Next we had the obligatory visit to a souvenir shop before driving around to Baywalk where we stayed in the vans due to poor weather and finally to the Catholic Cathedral.

Cathedral (1 of 1)

A few moments of peace and tranquility to end the day and some prayers the weather will improve for tomorrow.