This is the 3rd in a four-part series on Bariles’ Balut Island Paradise trip last year courtesy of Dolores Hotels and Resorts.
Read the first two parts there by clicking on the links below:
The story on Balut Island Paradise continues….
Now that we have all transferred our things into our two motorized bancas, and with the waves becoming larger, we went on our way and left behind Olaniban Island, which still remained as mysterious and enchanting from afar as when we first encountered it upon our arrival a few hours earlier. Next stop is the Sabang Sulfur Hot Springs.
In a few minutes, we were at cruising speed, passing by Balut Island‘s beaches and thick coconut plantations until we approached Patuco Cove.
That’s our vessel M/V Song of Dolly II loading sacks of copra to be sold in GenSan City. It will go back to Mabila Port to pick up passengers for GenSan later.
Patuko Cove, according to our boatman has been since time immemorial the refuge of ships and boats everytime a storm hits the channel. It is also an entry point of shipping vessels coming from GenSan City or Malita, Don Marcelino or Jose Abad Santos, Davao del Sur. It looks more like a pirate’s cove to me though, straight out of a scene from a Fernando Poe movie. During the time we were passing through, saw many fishing boats at berth, their operators on a brief furlough before travelling out into the sea or relaxing after a voyage.
From there, our two motorized bancas proceeded to the northeast part of the coastline of Balut Island in Barangay Lipol where the Sabang Sulfur Hot Spring is located. After an hour or so of uneventful, relaxing trip, we arrived at Sabang beach which, instead of sand was fully covered with football sized rocks. It was difficult wading through the knee-deep water because our feet kept falling on the crevices between these rocks. We finally reached the springs which were equipped with roofed concrete gazebos obviously for picnickers.
Eventually, we discovered that there are actually two Sulfur Hot springs, the bigger one having a diameter of 16 meters wide. Instead of water though, it looked like boiling bluish mud, with a temperature of 80 degrees celsius. Before the area was bought by the RD Group of Companies, it was used by local folks to dress chicken and pigs before being cooked. The smaller spring on the other hand was utilized as a natural facial spa before but nobody from our group was daring enough to try putting the hot mud on the face.
The group stayed on for a few more minutes to grab some snacks courtesy of Dolores Hotels and Resorts‘ staff until finally it was time to head back to Mabila Port and spend the next few early evening hours at Villalobos or Bullet Island before boarding M/V Song of Dolly II at midnite.