Arriving late at the Busuanga Airport due to delayed flight, our group split into two and went straight to our respective hotels. First on our itinerary would have been a trek up Mt. Tapyas, but most of us were too tired from our noontime trip from Manila.
Mt. Tapyas would have given us a full preview of what was in store for us during our 5-day tour of Coron, Palawan. To get to the top, one would have to go up 718 steps of concrete stairs. This mountain is said to be the second highest peak in this part of Palawan, rewarding the daring trekker with a spectacular view of the profound waters and guileless islands of Coron.
Since we were spent from our trip, we went to Maquinit Hot Springs at around 6:30 PM. We were forewarned that we shouldn’t stay longer than 15 minutes, especially if we have high blood pressure. Entrance fee was at Php150 per head. The saltwater temperature is about 40 degrees Celsius, so it’s not wise to jump right in. I dipped my legs first, shin-deep, for about 5 minutes before going in. I saw a couple of guys swimming as if in a regular pool, which I think is kind of crazy. One of the girls felt dizzy after a few minutes in the spring, so we went back to our hotel.
We met up again and had dinner at Kookie Lodge, the restaurant of Kookie Lodging House located at the town’s marketplace. Food was excellent! I had steamed lapu-lapu dipped in lemon and garlic sauce, plus steamed stingray. Dessert is on the house.
To cap the night, I had two bottles of beer — a Red Horse and San Mig Light — to make sure I get to sleep fast and ready for Day 2 of our courtship of Coron.