Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Exploring Colagsing – The Northern Tip of Davao Occidental

I started my ambitious life scape tour on January 2, 2016 by day touring the isolated island of Colagsing in the municipality of Sta. Maria, Davao Occidental. It is the northern tip of the newly-created province and we accessed the island via the Malalag Port of Davao del Sur. I have been yearning to visit the island through the recommendation of my friend Czaldy Garrote.

I was accompanied by a friend from the Tourism Office of Sta. Maria Miss Rhoda Mae. It was also her first time in the island. The boat ride from Malalag Port to Colagsing was only about 20 minutes through the famous Malalag Bay who shared a jurisdiction over the island. We sailed through huge waves of the bay and when we reached or destination, I witnessed how the people dwelled in this place I considered “disremembered  by the times”.

Life in Colagsing is meek. The people depends on fishing as a main source of income and while they belong to the territorial soils of Sta. Maria, most of their economic activity is networked in Malalag. Agriculture has not been thriving very well in the island except for some residents who raised backyard livestock and some gardening.

There is a dirt road connecting Colagsing to the mainland of Sta. Maria through Barangay Colongan but according to the locals, it is very far. The residents are mixed where both Muslims and Christians inhabit the place, as well as a small subdivision of the B’laan tribe.

While in the island, I saw the highest point of the town of Padada on the other side which I visited last June, the Piape Hill. The high point of Malalag also was visible in the south western part – the famed highway thru-cut portion. Some beautiful panoramic landscape bounding the island is captivating. And, the vessels docking in Malalag Bay, as well as the fish cages of bangus, are other attractions of the place.

Just before reaching Colagsing, there is a small island where visitors enjoyed bathing around. They call it Polo and it is the most-visited site in Colagsing. In the future, ecotourism can be a vast potential in the locality because there are other islands surrounding it. Island-hopping can be an option activity that can be introduced in the long run if the local governments of Sta. Maria and Malalag are really bent on pushing tourism to alleviate the economic status of the locals in Colagsing.

There was no clear skies during my visit in Colagsing which might just be the reason for me to go back to the island to capture more good photos. At any rate, I would like to thank Rhoda Mae for assisting my travel to this beautiful place. With you around the whole trip reaffirms my belief that Sta. Maria is a place of beautiful wonders resided by equally – beautiful people.

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