Even before my Batanes adventure began for this year, I was able to travel to SOCKSARGEN (South Cotobato, Sultan Kudarat, Saranggani and General Santos). As most people would think, hesitations can be foreseen due to the negative news we’ve been seeing on television. But, as what our security escort had told us, presently things are far more better compared to the previous years in.
It was my first time to visit General Santos – The land known for their freshest tuna and our very own boxing champion Manny Pacquiao. South Cotobato on the other hand is famous for having the longest zip line in the country (not for the faint of heart), and where The Great ‘Lang Dulay’ (National Dream Weaver Artist) lives; ‘T’boli’ tribe.
Our group stayed at General Santos’ posh four star hotel – Green Leaf. Will be posting a separate review soon. But if anything, I highly recommend tourists to stay at this hotel as we were all very well taken cared of.
We had hoped to meet Manny Pacquiao, however he is currently out of the country for his training. Luckily, thanks to our security escort Mr. Jun (Manny’s assigned security in General Santos). He was able to invite Mommy Dionisa to have dinner with us. She sure was a character, and in fairness she really does sing well and looks more beautiful in person than on television.
For sure, meeting Mommy D was one of our highlights during our trip. But speaking of photo ops, a visit to the ‘T’boli‘ tribe is not complete without a photo op with ‘Lang Dulay’ on our second day trip. She is the oldest living dream weavers in the village. Our tour guide explained how dream weavers come up with their designs. And in literal sense, they do dream about it and encompass their craft. The Abaca they use is known to have spirits that dwell on the fabric.
Our next destination was the ‘T’boli’ Museum. Prepare to be swarmed by sellers; insisting for you to buy their handmade products.
The weather at that time was cool and drizzling, which unfortunately cancelled our zip line activity at Lake Sebu. Aside from the weather, the main reason of the cancellation was because they had to close it as one of their cables were not working properly. Before heading to Lake Sebu, we had lunch at Punta Isla Jardin Resort; where the well-known floating restaurant was located. Unfortunately, I wasn’t too impressed with the food that they had served us. But we enjoyed the entertainment after our meal.
Next stop was the majestic view of Lake Sebu Falls
Travel time to General Santos from South Cotobato took us around 2 hours (or more). Before heading for dinner, we feasted on Durian and Marang on the fruit stands along the high way. It was (almost) like an all-you-can-eat buffet of Marang, Durian and Mangosteen, that my mom and I enjoyed so much.
Other places we had visited were, Citra Mina (where they sell processed tuna food), some of Manny Pacquiao’s mansions and buildings he and his wife own, and a mini city tour on our last day. It was a fun adventure and I’m looking forward for my next travel back here.