Sunday, September 23, 2012

SOCSKSARGEN Tour: Day 2 - Koronadal, Tacurong, Isulan and Lake Sebu

The destination for our second day was Lake Sebu.  The shortest route to Lake Sebu from Glan and Gensan was by way of Koronadal to Surallah and Lake Sebu. That would be about 150 kilometers.  We arrived in Koronadal just after one in the afternoon.  Koronadal, popularly known as Marbel is the capital of the province of South Cotabato and also the administrative center for Region 12 which composes the SOCSKSARGEN region. 

The welcome arch to the city of Koronadal

The new City Hall of Koronadal

We passed by the new city hall of Koronadal for some photo ops. Then we paid a visit to the Christ the King Cathedral of the Diocese of Marbel in Koronadal. 

The Christ the King Cathedral of the Diocese of Marbel in Koronadal

Stained glass of Christ the King at the facade of the Cathedral

The altar of the Christ the King Cathedral

Since it was still early, Bobby decided instead of going straight to Lake Sebu by way of Surallah, that we go up north first to the city of Tacurong, a component city  of the province of Sultan Kudarat.  From Tacurong we passed by the capital town of Sultan Kudarat in Isulan. We visited the Provincial Capitol where we were met by some provincial employees who were very much eager to tour us around their beautiful capitol.
The Provincial Capitol of  Sultan Kudarat in the capital town of Isulan. The statue of Sultan Kudarat majestically stands at the grounds fronting the Capitol

The Provincial Capitol of Sultan Kudarat

The lobby of the Provincial Capitol

Office of the Vice Governor

Sultan Pax Hall

The beautiful furniture at the Sultan Pax Hall.

The Sultan Hall

The official residence of the Governor at the back of the Capitol

View from the top of the Capitol

The statue of Sultan Kudarat fronting the Capitol

The gymnasium at the side of the Capitol is still unfinished

After the short tour of the provincial capitol of Sultan Kudarat we right away proceeded to Lake Sebu. I thought all along that Lake Sebu was just that, a lake.  I was surprised when still no lake in sight there was already this large welcome arch to Lake Sebu. It was only then that I realized that Lake Sebu is also a town bearing the same name. 
Lake Sebu is famous for its tilapia.  There one can eat all kinds of dishes made from tilapia.

A group pose at the welcome arch

Lake Sebu as viewed from Monte Cielo

Lake Sebu with its lotus garden

Fish pens  of tilapia at the Lake Sebu

We were lodged at the Monte Cielo Resort which was overlooking the lake itself. This resort is being operated by the owners themselves William and Mayette Sy.  Both have retired from their jobs, he being an airline pilot and she, a stewardess. Taking care of the resort is for them more like a hobby. They said they have not advertised their place and just depend on word of mouth as they would not like to make it  a 24/7 job, so that they could leave anytime they would like to.  They  give personalized service to their guests so that one feels that he is just visiting  some long lost friends. Food is already included in the rates of the  resort.  

Monte Cielo Resort in Lake Sebu - 0917-9230957 (Mayette); 0920-4600690 (William)

Entrance to the Monte Cielo Resort

The gardens of the Monte Cielo Resort overlooks the lake

This fruit tree is a combination of a guyabano and an apple. 

Breakfast was served at the garden. 

A souvenir shot with Mayette Sy, the owner..

With Mayette and William, owners of Monte Cielo

Since we wanted to buy some souvenir items, although it was already getting dark, Mayette herself volunteered to bring us to the local shops. She also brought us to the Cowhed, a shop owned by a women’s cooperative the shop itself featuring an authentic Tboli (the indigenous tribe living in the area) house. 
Souvenir Shop of the Cooperative of Women in Health and Development (COWHED)

The souvenir shop of the Cowhed features a typical Tboli house.

The place for cooking is found inside the house and serves also as a fireplace.
The different weave designs

1 comment:

Neng Mendoza said...

Very nice shots, wanted to see this, Im a solo traveler, what can you recommend as far as safety is concerned when travelling to these areas...