Thursday, February 28, 2013

Moalboal - Diving and Mythical Paradise of Cebu

Cebu is known as the Queen City of the South in the Philippines. It is the oldest city established during the Spanish colonial period back in the 16th century. Lots have been written about Cebu but not that much about the municipality of Moalboal as a tourist destination.

Where is Moalboal?

Moalboal is a peninsula that lies in Southwest coast of the Province of Cebu. It is bounded on the North by the Municipality of Alcantara, the Municipality of Badian in the South, west by TaƱon Strait and the Municipality of Argao in the East. It can be reached by bus or car in 2 ½ hours more or less from Cebu City.

Moalboal is known as a magnificent underwater diving paradise for both local and foreign nationals - one of the best scuba dive capitals of the world. 

There are two interesting things that caught my special attention with Moalboal:

One, a spring where the municipality derived its name. According to lore, Moalboal has a spring where many of the locals get their water. Once, a foreigner asked a woman with a cleft what the place was called. The woman thought he was asking her about the spring so she said that it was a bukal-bukal. However, because of her speech impediment, her words came out sounding like Moalboal and that was how the town got its name. It is interesting to note also that the location of the legendary spring sits beside the house of my relatives! Please see the picture below with an orange banca.

Two, a few meters from the legendary spring is the famed tree trunk that is somewhat "indestructible" and immovable according to the elders of the community. A local hero called Laguno, was a local warrior who was exiled from his hometown in Bohol. He and his family eventually came to the shores of Moalboal and settled there. Laguno had a "yam-yam" or "oracion" (divine prayers), a native prayer used to repel his enemies, and he used this to protect his home when moro invaders came. Legend goes that Laguno instructed his men to throw coconut husks into the water, then with the use of yam-yam, Laguno made it appear that the coconut husks were real men. Seeing that there were many warriors ready to defend the settlement, the moro invaders left. Laguno was revered by his people after that and when he died, it was said that his body was buried near a freshwater spring located, strangely enough, on the beach. His men placed a large tree trunk over his burial ground so as not to disturb him and it is said that even today, that trunk still exists. Whenever anyone tried to chop the trunk, it would bleed.

I also asked via overseas call my father (his hometown) and revealed that when he was young, he tried pulling the tree trunk a lot of times, but to no avail that only drained his power. The elders of the municipality told me as well that whoever attempts to chop the tree trunk gets sick!

If you are after a diving paradise with several scenic spots, landscapes, seascapes and magnificent sunsets, such as the pictures you will see below with some mystic and legendary lores? Then Moalboal is it!

If you want to know more about this interesting and beautiful place see the following link:

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