Beach Night at Apo Island near Dumaguete

From Dumaguete to Apo Island: Scuba Getaway



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After a visit to the Balicasag Marine Sanctuary in Bohol, Kris and Kristen came over to Dumaguete to see Apo Island’s famous marine sanctuary. Their friend Emily from back home was traveling through SE Asia, so she met up with us in Dumaguete the morning that we left for Apo. Also Pam from my Peace Corps batch came over as well with her mom, sister and Alex from the batch that arrived a year before ours.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    After the trip to the Balicasag Marine Sanctuary in Bohol, Kris and Kristen arrived in Dumaguete on the Maria Natasha from Larena, Siquijor early in the morning.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    One of the usual stops for visitors in Dumaguete is the well known bootleg dvd and cd market, also known as "The Muslim Market" by locals (still not sure why it has that name).

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    They even have such obscure and questionably watchable titles such as "Yanni: Live at the Acropolis".

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    The Jacket is yet another pirated movie for sale at the market.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    For dinner we went to Dumaguete's newest restaurant (the Persian Palate, mistakenly called by some "The Virgin Palace"). Note the very Celine Dion-esque character painted in the background on the wall.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    The night that Kris and Kristen were in town was the season finale for the "Amazing Race", one of my favorite shows from back home. Since their hotel room at Harold's Mansion in Dumaguete had cable and air conditioning, we set up there to watch how it played out. We all hoped that Rob and Amber wouldn't win it all.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Compared to the typical Peace Corps living situation, Harold's Mansion is "livin cushy" indeed, just like the name of this hot water heater. I guess that's why most volunteers stay at Harold's when they're in town to visit Dumaguete.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    To close out the night, Kris and I went over to Hayahay to see Dumaguete's hometown favorite reggae band Enchi play their Wednesday night set.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    The next morning we woke up early to go over to Apo Island; our first stop was the marine sanctuary to release a captive hawksbill turtle for the Silliman Marine lab. In this photo, one of the Apo Islanders is holding a few of the post cards I designed as a livelihood project to raise money for the local people and the turtle conservation program on the island.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    As we walked up to the dorm at Liberty's community run resort, we found Liberty's daughters entertaining themselves with this balloon chain from the balcony of her house.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    After releasing the turtle in Apo's Marine Sanctuary and going on a dive at Cogon point, we walked around the island to visit with the family of one of my friend's from the Marine Lab, Analie Candido. We wanted to arrange a fishing trip in the morning with Analie's dad. By the time we were done with planning the fishing trip, the sun was going down over the island of Negros behind us.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    For dinner we ate in Liberty's homey dining room.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Here's a group photo, from left: Emily (Kris and Kristen' friend from home), me, Kristen, and Kris.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    The next morning we woke up early to go fishing with Analie's family, in this photo her sister is leading us over to the beach where the family fishing boats are kept.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Later that morning Pam from our Peace Corps batch and Alex from the batch that arrived a year before us arrived at Apo with Pam's mom and her sister too.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    At the end of the day we hiked up to the top of the island where these cacti grow in the dry conditions. I definitely agree with the cactus in this photo!

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Just as the sun set, we all climbed up the rickety ladder to the top of the Apo Island light house.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Here's Pam and her sister by the lamp of the light house; the lamp is triggered by a sensor when it gets dark, so it is a good indicator of when it's time to head back down to the village before it is completely night.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    That night was Pam's 30th birthday so we all celebrated it with her in Liberty's dining room.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    After the lights went out at ten p.m., we went down on the beach to play some music on my guitar and hang out a bit. We had these candles for lighting instead, and Kristen was feeling "enlightened".

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Behind us, a lightning storm was flashing in the background. I took this shot on a long exposure and managed to catch one of the brighter flashes (the bluish glow in the background).

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    The Apo beach at night is great, when all the lights are out on the island you can see the stars really well and even sometimes the bioluminescent plankton twinkling in the shallows.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Walking back up to Liberty's dorm to go to sleep we came across this crab that was stuck on the stairs. Don't worry, Kristen didn't burn him.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    The hammock strung between two coconut trees beside the dive shop is a great spot to take a nap.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Here's a shot of Apo's distinctive Boluarte rock formation.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Small pump boats are often moored in the crystalline shallows around the island.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Just before we headed back to the mainland, we got a quick group photo on the beach.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Here's our group about to load onto Apo's island taxi boat, Perno.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Another great day on Apo Island, though unfortunately we were going back to the mainland.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    The seas were calm and the day was sunny; not much more you can ask for in a crossing to Apo Island.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Single file is the way to get off the boat at the Malatapay landing on the mainland of Negros Island.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Sometimes it can take a while to catch a tricycle cab back into Dumaguete from where I live, just outside town.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    Before catching the overnight boat to Cebu, Kris and Kristen stocked up on load for their cell phones. I really like the system they have here for phones, you don't have to buy a monthly plan, you are only charged for the pre-paid credits or "load" that you buy at a store like the Pick and Carry pictured here in Dumaguete.

  • Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005

    Apo Island & Dumaguete - May 2005
    We had a great end of the trip dinner at Hayahay in Dumaguete.