|Colorful Kayaks provided by ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya Foundation after Typhoon Yolanda|
SOHOTON CAVE - a lot would confuse this with Sohoton Cove in Surigao. We'll get there someday but for now, I'll be talking about the Sohoton Cave in Basey, Samar which is just a few KMs away from my place (Tacloban City). During my college days, it was very popular in our town but I wasn't able to go there until now. Whew, finally after so many years.
I went there without really expecting much but I was amazed with what it has to offer. Nobody told me it would be that nice! I've been to some caves in Cebu, Sumaging Cave in Sagada and the underground river in Palawan but I haven't seen something like what I saw in Sohoton Cave - the shining shimmering Gypsum Crystal formation! I'm not sure if people will really appreciate it, but so far, I think it that was the most beautiful thing I ever saw inside a cave.
My beautiful cousin paid a total of Php2,280 for the 5 of us already (456 pesos each). This includes boat ride, tour guide, entrance fees, environmental fees - basically everything except food.
How to get there:
- You can ride a jeepney going to Basey Samar from New Bus terminal in Tacloban. (In Robinsons Tacloban, you can wait for jeepneys or busses going to New Bus terminal)
- The jeepney will be passing by the tourism office (please see picture below) which is just at the center of Basey.
- Pay for the fees and you're ready to go!
|The tourism office is at the back of this building.|
The Sohoton Cave tour could take around 45 minutes to 1 hour. It was really big and spacious. I could even imagine my own living room and kitchen inside - with my black Gothic gown, in my black evil chair and an evil laugh lol.
You won't be able to touch some of the stones due to its sensitive nature but anyway, it's just a simple walk-in-the-park tour which is safe for kids and senior citizens. Just be really careful not to touch those precious stones/rocks.
After the cave tour, you will be paddling a kayak going to the Natural Bridge. The tour could also take an hour or two, depending on how fast you can paddle a kayak. You'll see beautiful rock formations along the way which is also nice.
Make sure to bring food and water because you won't find anyone selling food near the cave. You'll need to store some energy and hydration for the kayak ride. Also, bring some extra clothes and slippers because you'll get wet on your way to the Natural Bridge tour.
|Wespal Visitor Center and Eco-Lodge|
|At the back of the visitor lounge. This is designed by Architect Bong Recio free-of-charge to encourage tourists to visit the cave.|
|Herbal plants and flowers catered by ABS-CBN's environmental arm Bantay Kalikasan.|
If you're looking for a place to stay for the night, they offer accommodation with AC in Wespal Visitor Center and Eco-Lodge. You can contact these numbers for more info about the tour and accommodation: 09186434987 or 09777723990.
More pictures here:
|The number one rule of cave tour guides for visitors is to use one's imagination. . haha OMG what is that thing above me?!|
|This is the amazing "Musical Rock Organ". Each 'pipe' gives a different note when tapped. Awesome!|
|A nice portrait with this natural rock frame! Please don't mind my face.|
|Some things are just not easy as what it looks. One good example is paddling a kayak lol|
|Pabebe pose at the Sohoton Natural Bridge. It's called as such because of the natural stone bridge which connects two mountains.|
This tour is actually a good side trip for those who are exploring Samar or Leyte. Or to those who are staying near the area who have nothing else to do. It's just a part of what Samar has to offer as a whole and I'm looking forward to more Samar trips in the future!
Kudos to ABS-CBN and Ms. Gina Lopez for supporting eco-tourism in small communities like these. Good job!