A little bit of Tibet in the Philippines?

by Dave from The Longest Way Home ~ July 23rd, 2009. Published in: Travel blog » Philippines.
Fishing boats in dock, Sabang, The Philippines

Fishing boats in dock, Sabang, The Philippines (click to enlarge)

Sabang is a very small town. In fact, it’s more of a road and beach front than town. There’s no pharmacy … but there is a medical center. When I needed it, it was closed. But help is always at hand in the Philippines and I was told the nearest Pharmacy was a 3km drive away. I also know that things somethings get mixed up in communication in the Philippines, so I simply asked where I could buy medicine. The answer was nowhere, but a little Sari Sari store did sell cough sweets. I gave it a try, and low and behold they sold antibiotics.

Tibetan Temple in the Philippines

Tibetan Temple in the Philippines

Psychologically I felt better already. Dried out and resting I decided to spend an extra day or two in Sabang to get back on my feet. I don’t like to sit around doing nothing, so I asked around if there was anything else to do.

“Visit the sea waterfall,” came a curious answer from the chop house lady. “And Tibetan temple.”

Tibetan temples and sea waterfalls? I was curious.

In truth the lady also mentioned that the waterfall was not so exciting, an ordinary waterfall that happened to run off a cliff into the sea. Coughing and spluttering I walked past a resort, and out along the rocky beach coast. Along the way I noticed a few Tibetan stones stacked up. Symbols I remember from my time in Tibet.

It wasn’t long until I came across the Tibetan Temple, which actually had a name sign proclaiming it as a Chinese temple. I wondered for a while if it had anything to do with the amount of Chinese hotel/resort construction going on in Sabang. There was one man tending to the candle filled temple.

Further along the stone beach some signs began appearing. Each one with a little Buddhist style quote. My skeptical mind began to wonder again if there wasn’t some stoned born again hippie at work nearby.

Buddhist signs in the Philippines

Buddhist signs in the Philippines

Each sign mentioned the distance in meters. And each seemed to be a little off in reality. Shame they couldn’t but up the same amount of signs along the Monkey Trail. But nonetheless I eventually arrived at the waterfall.

The chop house lady was right, it was nothing special. A waterfall from a small cliff, that ran onto the rocky beach next to the sea. It was however good to get out.

The waterfall in Sabang

The waterfall in Sabang

I stayed I while and planned out my next phase of trying to live on an island in the Philippines. So far Brooke’s point was wining out over Peurto, Narra and Sabang. Sabang is a nice getaway place for a few days. But to try living there seemed quite depressing to me.

The Chinese hotels really put a dampener on it.  But there was still more to see on Palawan. I planned to move on to El Nido next. Way up in the north. I was also curious about how to get there? Online forums said it was a terrible 10 hour journey. Longer still from Sabang. On the map it looked not so far, but then maps don’t take into account road conditions.

Just as I left something caught my eye. Little black dots hopping around on rocks down along the seashore. I got closer and marveled at the little half fish half land creature with tiny little fin like hands and faces. They seemed to be air breathers. I thought they looked like lungfish, but could stand corrected.

Strange Lung fish type creature in Sabang

Strange Lung fish type creature in Sabang

Tibetan temples, Buddhist quotes, illness, finding a place called home and now Darminian fish. I took it as a sign that things were about to change.

Coming Soon:

Quick post: How to get from Sabang to El Nido, Palawan.

Then it’s on to El Nido.

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2 Great responses to A little bit of Tibet in the Philippines?

  1. Nora says:

    Heh Heh – Interesting timing that you should be reminded of Tibet, on the heels of writing about it on my website! (Great job, by the way).
    …and I love the lung-fish-looking-creature. It’s almost cute!

    • Ha ha! Yes indeed. It was meant to be I guess. Thanks again for getting in touch, and for the article. Glad it worked out well.

      Yep, the lungfish guys are kinda fun alright. Little arms and all!!!