I'm finally getting around to posting photos from July, when my daughter and I spent 3 weeks in the Philippines. Even I was a little surprised when I realized it was my daughter's 4th time there given she was only 2 years and 6 months old. During this trip one of the places we visited was the island of Siargao, which is known internationally for its surf breaks, specifically Cloud9 and its perfect barrels.
We traveled with my sister, aunt, and cousins and stayed at the gorgeous Kalinaw Resort, which is owned by French expats Fred and Pierre. One of Travel & Leisure's World's Best Resorts, Kalinaw has only 5 villas so it is secluded and quiet, until we got there anyway.
The villas are elevated, surrounded by lush gardens, and have expansive decks that are perfect for doing nothing.
It was nice to have a sit down meal after a morning airplane rides to get here. Without direct flights from Manila, Siargao is able to stay relatively non-commercialized. You can probably count the cars on this island with your fingers. The main transportation on the island is the habal-habal, aka motorcycle. Whether it is a family of 5 or a surfer with 5 boards, it's habal-habal. After dark, there is pretty much nothing to do besides dinner at the few restaurants and resort options available. What it lacks in nightlife, Siargao more than makes up for with its unspoiled beauty.
Coral art by Life After Breakfast.
Silly cousins Kai and Amelia hide in the reception desk.
These amazing flowers fall from its tree during the night and litter the beach in the morning. I have no idea what they are, but I told Amelia they're truffula flowers.
Double decker hermit crabs.
Off we go on an island hopping adventure!
Provisions and surfboards aboard! Luke bought water, fish, rice, vegetables and fruits from the open air market right off the docks before we left. Thank goodness he was with us otherwise we would have had no idea.
First stop is an ocean break. The waves are small but we are the only people here. How amazing is that! Six-year-old surfer Kai and his dad surfer Luke doing what they do.
Next stop is Daku Island for swimming and lunch.
Loli D and A.
Luke rented one of these huts and hired a local cook to prepare our meal.
Conch shells bought at the island.
Grilled fish and squid.
Coconuts are picked and cut to order. My favorite drink and snack in the whole wide world.
Just us on this powdery beach.
I'm so hooked on Siargao and can't wait to go back.
Photos in today's globetrotting story were taken by Dr. Ricci Sylla.
Ricci is an ObGyn by profession, and an avid, snap-happy photographer at all other times. She likes taking pictures mostly of food, but since the recent population explosion in her family, cute nieces and nephews show up much more frequently in her Picasa files. She hearts cake, ice cream, macarons, cotton candy and fancy desserts! You can follow Ricci on Instagram.
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Daku Island, Philippines