Archive for bicol region

capitol gains

Posted in architecture, artifacts, events, history, interior design, lifestyle, locales, people, travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 30, 2009 by mijodo

the capitol's aviary

Who would have thought that the premises of  a certain  provincial capitol  could dust off its stodgy and prim attributes in exchange for being the hippest and coolest government territory?

Just hie off to the Camarines Sur’s sprawling 151 hectare Kapitolyo at Pili, and you get the sense of youthful enthusiasm and vigor what with the several important projects involving  high technology and some paradigm shifting  in providing jobs, education, and tourism activity.

The CWC (https://letsgopinas.wordpress.com/2009/03/06/amped/) is the big kahuna in its arsenal of offerings inside the government dominion. Some would characterize the project as juvenile, but it is a significant project in line with province’s top of mind positioning as an action packed and adventure laden travel destination. The idea of CWC converges with images of other spots inside and a little beyond Camarines Sur – the beaches of Caramoan, the butandings of Donsol, and the mountains of Mayon, Isarog, and Bulusan.

Within the compound, the provincial goverment goes into computer animation and informaton technology, allowing two separate buildings to provide education in cartoon making, and jobs in call center accounts for the youth.  Unquestionably, the Governor L-Ray Villafuerte’s young energy and mindset that direct  the whole system in providing innovative and yet effective methods in showing what the province can do.

But one should be aware that the past governers of the province have also made substantial physical inputs inside the governor’s executive expanse during their terms. One could enjoy the aviary, the deer farm, and the pigeon feeding area at the Ecovillage.  There is also the manmade cave and lake to explore and to take respite in respectively. And aside from what CWC’s accommodations, there are a number of other hotel rooms for the visitors to stay in – the Governor’s Mansion and in the campsite area.

The whole Capitol grounds is really impressive, considering the meager resources perhaps. But it is in the way this administration thinks and acts that is most riveting and exciting  – with so much aplomb, and outside the usual box.

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amped!

Posted in architecture, interior design, lifestyle, locales, sports, technology, travel with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 6, 2009 by mijodo

kneeboarding toward twilight

I see the 15 storey-tall contraption, just at the edge of the shore. Some more similar frames, but leaner in size, are placed along the circumference of  a lagoon. And in the middle of the water, an islet sits on it. The lagoon could be likened to a race-horse track in terms of its measurement. Then I see steel cable  lines encircling the water connected to and from the tall frame apparatuses.  Then I see that from the machine-contraption, a person is whisked away, hauled hard by the cables, along  the perimeter of  the water. Then I  just realize that the person is just having the ride of his life!

Camarines Sur or CamSur brings forth to the open its newest sensation which catapults its image as the prime spot in the Philippines for the adventure seekers and the extreme sports enthusiasts. The Camsur Watersports Complex (CWC) is a provincial government  initiated project which provides a jolt to anyone trying out the biggest and best park for wakeboarding  in the world.

Apparently, CWC has been opened for some years now, but somehow it just in the recent months that its popularity truly made impact to the domestic public. But for those professional riders of the watersports, particularly from Europe and North America, the park is well-known and is taken as a serious venue for showing off skills and abilities through the different ramps and obstacles. And many competitions have been mounted such that all legendary names in the field have approved the standards of the course. It would not be a wonder if many of the foreigner guests come only for the wakeboarding facilities in Pili, Camarines Sur.

Wakeboarding is quite similar to waterskiing , and it involves riding a wakeboard that skims over a surface of water while the person is towed at a certain minimum speed. Some would run the course alone, but some would do it on tandem. Others would opt to waterski and waterskate, using other footgear.  For those just trying out the watersport of wakeboarding, one can start through the use of a kneeboard and be on the water with knees fastened on the board. There is a person ready to give you pointers and instructions to ride out the cables. Prices are very moderate – 160 bucks to rent out the gear and do practice runs for an hour.

CWC is a well thought off plan and undertaking, with the global youthful travelers in mind. It is plush and truly world class; it is resort-style in touches and amenities.  At the beaches, cabanas are installed for some  deep tissue massages.  Row of tiki huts along shore provides shelter from the searing sun while the famished read the menu of food and drinks which cater to Filipinos and international guests. German sausage meals are on top of the list.  There is an ample sized infinity swimming pool to lounge between the cabanas and huts. But what is unmistakebly welcomed is the park’s  free wi-fi connection just right beside the man-made lagoon. Surely, one can get connected to the rest of the world right after getting  a kick in the water!

Tired in the knees and arms from wakeboarding?  How about doing the ramps instead on the ground with skateboarding – ala street fashion. Just at the back of the park’s open-air bar and restaurant, one can do some shuffling and board tricks on the simulated street environment. Or one can just frolick more on the water. The still to be opened man-made lake behind the main receiving hall has  inflatable slides and  giant toys to play around with.

But the provincial government does not stop there. It gives several choices of well appointed rooms and housing for staying for a while. There are trailer homes – in red, blue and green- which accommodate families. There are also the cabanas, and the newly opened palochina walled cabins to provide luxurious comforts in rustic style. There are vans and coasters to bring the guest to and from the beach area to their respective rooms, and to the other different places around the Capitol Grounds where CWC is located. The park administration even offers free shuttle to Naga, the charter city of Cam Sur and airport transfers.

I am not exactly an extreme sports type of guy.  But not to partake the seeming thrill of going around the lake is quite just  unreasonable. Afterall with a floating vest on,  the worse that can happen is to get submerged in the water for a second, and be propped up the next second. After some directions provided by the instructor, and all geared up, I go to the water, and instantaneously lose balance.  Then and there, I swim towards the shore and I decide to head to the pool instead. Afterall, I know a successful wakeboarding activity won’t just happen to me within the hour. I am after the experience.  But while I float at my back in the now placid water, and while I take a look at the image of Camarines Sur’s Mount Isarog looming in the distance, I say quietly to myself, “This is CamSur, and I am amped about it.”