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Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Travel Misadventure » Panic at Bellarocca

Solitary man on a boat approaching Bellarocca Resort at Elephant Island in Buenavista Marinduque Philippines
Admit it - sometimes in our excitement we do stupid things – a simple sense of travel adventure leads to unfortunate screw-ups. It creates utter panic and frustrations but later becomes a laughable travel moments – an anecdote worth sharing with others.

Now before I get to the story itself, I’d like to note that this happened during our unforgettable visit to Marinduque during our Semana Santa holiday trip last year and I only posted it now because our group all agreed not to mention this or tag photos on our social media accounts in case somebody would investigate those “intruders” on that one lovely afternoon.


A taste of Bellarocca, clandestine style

 
View of Elephant Island and Bellarocca Resort from Buenavista Marinduque mainland.
Bellarocca Island Resort and Spa looks like an elephant submerged on  the Sibuan Sea as viewed from Buenavista mainland
The plan, clearly, was very simple. We would take a quick rest and lunch at Buenavista after our extremely energy draining commute from Kamias, Cubao going to Lucena and a jam-packed Ro-Ro trip going to Balanacan Port in Marinduque – then we will take a relaxing boat ride around that super luxurious and expensive, Santorini inspired exclusive resort in Buenavista, Marinduque called the Bellarocca Island Resort and Spa located at Elefante Island.
Backpackers enjoying a boat ride circling the Bellarocca island
Our motto: When you are on a holiday island get-away, sleeping is a waste of time
The afternoon was flawless. The boat ride was a relaxing hammock, the waves swaying us to sleep but the surrounding blue waters, perfect landscapes and the intense sky all keep us excited and awake. We don’t want to miss a glimpse of that prestigious Bellarocca Island Resort.   
  
View of the submerged Elephant Island now more commonly known as the Bellarocca Island
 Bellarocca, an island resort patterned after Santorini, Greece, with its white-washed cliffside houses.
A few minutes later, we got a glimpse of the famed resort. From afar, the lovely island looks like a half submerged sleeping elephant (thus the name Elefante Island) floating on blue waters – but as we got closer, with all those white buildings shaped like tombs, it looks more like a cemetery. That’s how fascinating Bellarocca is.

White villas, terrazas, casas of Bellarocca Resort and Spa situated on a cliff.
White villas and buildings at Bellarocca perfectly situated over a picturesque cliff overlooking the Agean sea.
Given this, you might find it ironic that, despite us being dead-tired, we took a boat ride to circle this little exclusive island resort just to take snapshots – yes, we don’t have any prior reservations at the resort and it was illegal for us to step into the island. Plus we heard that Senator Trillanes was staying at the resort that time, thus there must be extra security.


Sharp rock formations around Bellaroccca island
Guarding the "exclusivity" of the Bellarocca are sharp rock formations around the island.

We finished circling the island, taking photos here and there like those Abu Sayyaf spying an island resort looking for their next kidnap victim.

Just as when we are about to sail away, Mario’s head cap fell into the waters and we decided to turn back to fetch it up. We found the cap floating just a few meters from the beach area of the resort.

We all looked at each other and we seem to have only one thing in mind. “Since we are already here…” we all reasoned out.   

So we got a brilliant plan - beach crashing! The beach area was totally deserted, and it would took maybe 45 minutes for any personnel from the resort to reach the beach area if they see us – enough time for us to flee with our motorized banca.

“We will just take few quick souvenir photos anyway,” we all agreed.


Who are you! Who are you!


Picturesque Bellarocca dock with boat and colorful sail against blue sky
Picturesque Dock area serving as a luxurious welcome to the Bellarocca island.  
Having the reputation of being exclusive and not-for-all expensive island resort, we can’t help but get thrilled on our resort-crashing adventure.

Eastgate Backpackers having a good time on a boat
This is how we crash an exclusive resort.
We immediately docked and step into beach and started taking souvenir selfies so we can have something to brag on our Facebook pages later. But Gara cannot resist the waters, and decided to take a quick dive at the beach like she paid for it. 

Easgate Backpackers crashing Bellarocca Resort
Attack Plan: Just a few quick souvenir photo then leave....hmm ok one more shots please...

We also extended our photo shoot- missing our agreed attack plan to just-take-quick-photos-and-leave, and a very vital fact that: we are all trespassing and it is somehow legal for them to shoot us or have us arrested. 

Out of nowhere, a pale-fat-fuming-westerner guy came out shouting, “Who are you! Who are you!”  He was holding something which I thought was a gun.

Pure panic swept over our bodies and everybody was running towards the boat. I was still few meters away from our get-away boat. I felt pure adrenaline surging through my body and my heart thumping in my chest – sure that this trip would end to be an epic fail.


The group hurriedly return to boat to leave after being scolded by Bellarocca resort security
Hurry up!!

The boat took a few painstakingly long minutes to start – and the fat guy is now approaching us.


Girl hiding inside the boat after resort crashing Bellarocca
Gara, hiding her face inside the boat.
“Don’t look at him, don’t look at him,” I heard Tonet anxiously advising us. Then as the pale-fat-fuming-westerner guy came nearer, I saw him pointing something at us – thank goodness it was just a camera and not a gun. 

So we all covered our faces and pretended to just ignore him. 

When we felt absolutely sure that we are far enough the island and no speed boat are chasing us, we finally completely calmed down and heaved a very relieved sigh.

Upon reaching the Buenavista mainland, we started discussing the much-needed funny post-panic sharing of experience (as if different thing happened to each one of us.)

We all end up laughing and giggling over a nice cold tall glass of halo-halo.


Ok, your turn


Yodi souvenir photo at the Bellarocca Resort Dock area on a boat with colorful sails.
Just one more shot please...

I’m still smiling here like an idiot all by myself. If you’ve had an epic travel screw-ups or some misadventure, please share it in the comments section or leave a related link if you have a blog.

I’d love to hear from the rest of you. 






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About the Blogger

Yodi Insigne
Yodi de Veas Insigne is one of those delusional sorts who imagines himself a useful contributor to the greater blogosphere (Well, that's what he's trying to accomplish).

He started blogging for three reasons:

1. He always felt he has something important to say,
2. Books can make him cry, and cliff jumping can make him high,
3. He want to sleep at night.

He is a self-certified bookworm, travel junkie, shutterbug, movie freak, Mangyan hiker who sleeps a lot and think a lot. He got a little vice, which is black coffee and cashew nuts. He got colorblindness on yellow and green - and he freaking loves it!

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