Mindanao has a lot to offer–and when it comes to beaches, Mati doesn’t hold back.

I was just a tag along with my Mom’s high school classmates’ reunion together with my sister. But boy, contrary to the stereotypes of people who tag along, I didn’t feel unwelcome at all.

From Davao, we stopped by Tagum to meet up with my mom’s classmates. We had a service to take us to Mati. The funniest thing was Mom’s phone died–oh the timing!

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Nevertheless, it was on. We met up with them an hour later. It was a four-hour drive from Tagum and it was my first time to travel by land for more than two hours. I was feeling a little bit anxious (again) for obvious reasons but got distracted by the overwhelming and pretty greenery around me.

Imagine my exhaustion when I was expecting the drive was less or more than three hours. Turns out it was more than four hours! And five, if you count the drive from Davao to Tagum. We were an hour away from our destination, Blue Bless Beach Resort, but we arrived on Mati by 7pm. The central part can be seen from the highlands like a bunch of fireflies’ butts.

 

I enjoy small things like the scenes from the pictures above. The air is definitely fresher than my city’s. It was moist, it smelled like wet grass and cow dung. Oh, and the stars can be definitely seen at night. I’m definitely miles away from Davao!

Naturally, when we arrived we were stumped, sleepy, and hungry. I groaned when I saw the almost 4-meter high stair that we should descend to in order to get to our cottage. But we had to have dinner. So we proceeded to pay for the entrance (Php30) which was cheap compared to Samal Beaches’, but Blue Bless’ cottages were a bit pricey (for me). Everything was priced at more than Php1,000.

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The night ended with night swimming in the pool and the sea, and drinking sessions. I didn’t swim and drink because I was trying to quit. (Oplan quit alchohol. Coming soon!)

And another funny thing happened. I slept beside the pool which was on the upper part of the resort. There was a round-shaped sort of couch big enough to be a bed for me sooo I settled on it. I was having the best time in the world: wrapping myself with malong as a blanket, I lied down under a starry night sky.

So morning came and guess who woke me up? An attendant of the resort. I thought I was dreaming but I wasn’t–the attendant was bashfully reprimanding me. He said, “Ay ma’am, bawal baya magtambay diri. (Ma’am, you’re not allowed to hang around here.)  I was holding myself from laughing. So I grudgingly got up. I quickly remembered it was time for me to swim so I went back to the cottage. I wanted to swim witnessing the sunrise. And it was worth it.

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It was also a perfect time to explore. Blue Bless had awesome facilities. They had a mini-canteen, bar, entertainment area (two karaoke spots, billiards, and a bar), cooking areas–they are all elevated. They even had superhero statues.

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Our cottage’s stairs
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Jet Skis

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Guy: Include me in your picture, please!
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Kid: Spongebob, are you there?
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Elevated facilities.
Batman and I
I am the knight!

Its only flaw was that the comfort rooms were located in the upper part. If someone wants to do number 2, they have to go through flights of stairs to do their miracle. I think they should reconsider that.

Also, going to Mati wouldn’t be complete without visiting these places: Dahican beaches and The Sleeping Dinosaur Island.

The Dahican beach was one of a kind. It was my first time to see a beach resort with such huge waves splashing against the shore and fine, almost-white sand.

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Lastly, what made this trip worthy of my butt pain from sitting too much on the ride was this precious sight. I just stood there, my heart seemed tied in knots and exhaled thankfully. Wow. Just wow.

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So what is this magic I’m talking about? It’s simply being there. I thought Mati was overrated and people went to the beach parties, but I was wrong. Seeing the place in the flesh was overwhelming. Beautiful. Refreshing. There were many times I stood in awe with my jaw dropping. You just have to be there to know what I’m saying.

It was indeed a healthy dose of Vitamin Sea.

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