My first day in Donsol .. It started bright with my new friend , but then when the Whale Shark watching time came , it was …
Well guess what .. Bus stopped 25 minutes later .. ( last post I was in a bus from Manila to Legazpi , and I was super thirsty )
So I got my water .. In fact . I got 2 bottles of water and 1 bottle of coca .
I arrived in Legazpi in 7.30 am .
And next to the bus station , this time looking for buses to Donsol .
Van was still half full so I waited 1 hour for it to fill up , but here you can pass your time easely- Mr donut cafe is just next to it , so I could have some food .
Then at about 8.30 I was on my way to Donsol and i met a guy that works in the tourist center of Donsol activities . .
His name was Erik and he was ariginally from Donsol himself. So looks like I was up to a good start with my new friend . I arrived in donsol town and after Eric’s recommendations I was on my way to look at the place he talked about .He said that prices should be around 350 peso or so. I arrived to Alexandra house that located n the main road . Starting price was about 500 peso and I managed to bargain down to the 400 peso .
I had a little room 3 by 3 meter in native style .. It looked nice and pretty fair for the price . Bathroom was downstairs with cold shower .
Time about 10 am and I dropped my stuff on the blue covered bed and was ready to see whale sharks ..
I took a trike for 20peso to donsol tourist center .. It’s the only place from where you can see whale sharks . There are about 3 dive shops on the right side of the road and restaurant , followed by tourist center and hotel on the left side .
Arrived in the tourist center and started to fill out paperwork .. Not much to fill , just one page with standard info . Then a payment :
Boat costs 3500 peso . And maximum capacity is 6 people . So price is divided between each person .. If you are less than six and no one else comes , then you divide between the number of people there are .. + you pay 300 peso per person a tourist registration fee ( that goes to workers in the center and maintainable of services ) . This fee is one time payment and is valid for 5 days ( registration fee , but you pay for the boat every time you want to see whale sharks )
Plus equipment fees are 250 for mask and snorkel and 300 for Finns ..
Feel free to take your own finns and mask .
So when I arrived there were no people going whale shark watching .. I waited until 2.30 pm and then a group of 3 canadians showed up and their Tour guide agreed for me to join ( normally groups organized by tour guides does not take regular tourists that are waiting at center ) .
So I paid 1/4 of the boat . Plus the fee of 300 peso .
Total of 1220 (something like that .)
And you get boat for 3 hours . Whale shark or no whale shark , that’s it 3 hours ..
In my case – no whale shark .
Sad I went home and explored town for little snacks .
Got some BBQ sticks for 10 peso each and some spring rolls for 3 peso each ..
Then at 6pm I arrived to watch fire fly’s
Boat cost 1250 peso and maximum can be 5 people on it .. So the same system as whale sharks . I waited an hour and then a German/ Austrian group appeared 4 peso .. Perfect . I could join .
So I paid 250 peso
It was lovely tour .. In complete darkness driving boat trough the river and stopping by the trees that looks like Christmas decorations blinking . Almost like a heart beat .. Stunning ..
By the way ..PLEase don’t take your damn camera .. It’s useless in complete darkness . Flash is not aloud ..
Got back at 8pm went home by walk thought the quiet town on Donsol .Its incredibly safe and welcoming .. Hope everyone decides to have a walk around the town in evening ..