Ritch's Blog Posts | rich'nritch.com

Ritch's Blog Posts

Captivating Langoyon River: A Hideaway Paradise with Fascinating Natural Swimming Pools in Tagororoc, Nabas, Aklan

The cool and crystal clear water between the limestone walls and its surrounding nature makes Langoyon River  a perfect weekend getaway.

True to its town’s slogan that says, “Pangibabaw Nabas!” (which means Standout Nabas!), the town is really going up in placing itself on the international tourism map being Boracay’s neighbor. Nabas is popularly known for its spine-tingling cold springs. There’s Hurom-Hurom, Basang, Manyuko, and the latest Bungan-Bungan. But talking about rivers and waterfalls matched with adventures, I recommend Langoyon River and Tagaroroc Falls. These two spots are best for daytime jaunts and both found in Brgy. Tagaroroc, Nabas, Aklan. The barangay crossing is located 15-min tricycle ride away from Godofredo P. Ramos Aiport also known as Caticlan Airport which services Boracay Island, and along national highway to the Kalibo International Airport in Aklan’s capital. Major Philippine airlines fly to both airports many times a day. 

August 22, 2018

Mataudya Clean River and Seemingly Endless Mini-Waterfalls: Why Malay Is More Than Just Boracay

Sitio Mataudya serves as a boundary for the interiors of Malay and Buruanga, Aklan with a bounty of mini-waterfalls and century-old trees.

Probably one of the reasons why you love out-of-town trips is that you never really see how beautiful and rich your own place is before a tourist does. And when it happens, you regret why you didn’t see or experience it first. Suddenly, you feel like a stranger in your own backyard. Gladly, I am not. As a Malaynon who lives very close to Boracay Island, I am aware how famous the island is that almost all people who visit Aklan and/or Malay intend to go to Boracay. Well, I can’t blame them. Boracay is an ‘island paradise.’ But the town of Malay is not just all white beaches and the island is not the only tourist destination. Beyond the usual Boracay, the mainland is just as breathtaking - only much freer from the crowd of tourists. There is the lush greenery part perfect to feel attuned to nature at its purest form. If you’re into hiking, I have previously featured the Banderahan and Panaktakan viewpoints that offer a gorgeous vista of Boracay Island and its surrounding islets, Romblon Islands, and Sibuyan Sea accentuated by the spectacular sight of the rolling hills and an array of wind turbines nearby accessible via Brgy. Argao or Brgy. Napaan.

August 20, 2018

Pushing Through: Overcoming Mt. Baloy’s Challenges and Completing the Panay Trilogy

The Kinulitan trail of Mt. Baloy is a narrow path cut through the thick wild plants called ‘lagiwriws’ or ‘ragiwriws,’ which cover the entire area. The leaves are like of pandan plant but the branches are long, entangled, and crawling like vines. It offers a tremendously thrilling experience! The Kinulitan trail was established by AMSI (Antique Mountaineering Society Inc.) with Talahib Eco Trekeers and guides from Barangay Busog, Valderrama, Antique in 2015.

“We advise you not to go,“ said PSI Jose Nemias P. Pamplona, OIC of the Calinog Municipal Police Station. Exactly 3:00 in the afternoon of April 16, 2018 when we arrived at the station for log in. We were entertained first by an officer who asked for our IDs and recorded our personal information in a sheet of paper. Afterward, he brought us to the room of PSI Pamplona who was still out for an official business that time. With the use of a topographic map hanging on the wall of the office, he oriented us about the geographical location of the trail we will take to reach Mt. Baloy from Calinog side. He told us of the dangers ahead which at some point, made me think of backing out. The whole area is considered as a ‘hotspot'. While deciding to proceed or not, Sir Pamplona suddenly arrived. We shook hands and introduced ourselves as friends of the 20 hikers of Higher Grounds Mountaineers-Iloilo who did the same traverse two weeks ago headed by Sir Jay Plantinos. We showed to him the photo of the map provided to us by Sir Jay and explained to him our goals for the hike. He then continued the orientation and upon hearing his negative advise, I turned my head to Richard and consulted him. Richard said he wants to proceed and convinced me to drop the negativity. After a while, we told Sir Pamplona that it is unethical for us to abandon the hike prior to meeting our host in Karatagan and we wanted to assess the situation personally when we reach the jump-off point. He then wished us good luck and even joked to send his office a copy of the trail photos after our descent. That lightened up our mood.

July 10, 2018

Open Letter: 5 Reasons Why You Should Not Stop Me, a Teacher, From Traveling

Reading a book story to one of the Aberling Tribe families in Sitio Baag, San Jose, Tarlac.

Dear you, yes you. Don't stop me (a teacher) from traveling. Why? Because wherever I go, I never forget I'm a teacher. "I will share this to my students," is a common line people I meet in my travels hear from me. The road has taught me more functional lessons than my degree, certificates, seminars, and training. Outside my usual environment, every place is a new experience, every moment is a learning opportunity, every person is a channel of new ideas, and every journey is a window to a new world. It seems to me that every time I decide to go out, I become a better person when I come home.

July 8, 2018

Boracay Closure from a Malaynon’s Viewpoint: How It’s Affecting the Locals and What Can Be Done to Minimize the Negative Tourism Impacts

The serene look of Boracay white beach accentuated by an array of coconut trees after two months of closure.

Boracay is every tourist’s dream destination popularly known as an “island paradise.” Not known to all, Boracay is not a town or a city but a small island composed of three barangays namely Manocmanoc, Balabag, and Yapak. It is a part of the municipality of Malay with 14 other barangays in the mainland, one of which is the barangay of Argao where I and my family reside. Argao is mainly coastal and my house is situated few meters away from the shoreline facing the 7-kilometer beach, aptly called White Beach. Every time I step out from the door of my hut, I get to see the entire stretch of Boracay’s front beach. At day time, the sand is strikingly white and at night time, the place is filled with party lights. Many people call it is an ‘island that never sleeps.”

July 1, 2018

Discovering the Indigenous Side of Aklan: An Immersion with Aklanon Bukidnon Community in Panipiason, Madalag

Locals dancing Inagong, a traditional dance.

During our Aklan to Antique traverse through Mt. Madjaas, we were invited by Tay Herminio and Tay Roming, our guides from Barangay Panipiason, Madalag, to come back to their vibrant community to experience their fiesta called ‘Pistang Kristiyano’ in the coming weeks. Without hesitation, we said 'yes' to them.

November 30, 2017

Experience the Pristine Beaches of Bel-is, Buruanga, Aklan; Hidden and Boracay-like Paradise with Fine White Sand and Clear Blue Water

A secret paradise with stunning white sand beach, picturesque little coves, lush green forest, azure water and amazing sunset.

Bel-is is a barangay in the outline area of Buruanga, the westernmost town in the province of Aklan. Bel-is is a home to numerous white beaches such as Hinugtan Beach and Tuburan Baybay. It is also where Ariel’s Point is located, formerly called Batason Point, a popular cliff-diving spot that is 30-minute away from the world-renowned island of Boracay.

November 29, 2017

A Week into the Wild: What We Found in Walking Across Aklan and Antique Mountain Ranges for 7 Days

Trekking the pristine river somewhere in the tip of Aklan. The upstream river is part of the long trail leading to the elusive summit of Mt. Madjaas.

More than the famous powdery white sand beach of Boracay, many parts of Aklan remain hidden and untouched. The province of Aklan, particularly the towns of Libacao and Madalag, is home to numerous unexplored mountain ranges; a potential mountaineering destination in the country. The highest mountain in Aklan, Mt. Nausang, has just been explored by AMSI (Antique Mountaineering Society Inc.) in May. Mount Nausang is 1600 MASL. It's summit is located in Panipiason, Madalag, Aklan and it’s ranges extends up to Oyang, Libacao, Aklan. Inspired by the exploration of AMSI in Mt. Nausang, Richard and I attempted a hike traversing Mt. Nausang from its ranges in Libacao, Aklan to it’s summit in Panipiason, Madalag and connect it to Mt. Madjaas in Antique. The hike was our personal endeavor, fuelled by our strong passion for exploration.

November 15, 2017

About Us

With tay Nito in his house in Lomboyan, Barbaza, Antique, he's one the legendary guides of Mt. Nangtud in Barbaza, Antique.
With tay Nito in his house in Lomboyan, Barbaza, Antique, he's one the legendary guides of Mt. Nangtud in Barbaza, Antique.

 

October 3, 2017