Sabang's Limestone Cliffs
I woke up earlier than usual. The sunburn on my back was the first thing I felt. Checking the time on my phone, the blisters on my feet greeted me good morning.
I missed waking up to mornings like this. The ‘mornings after’ – after being out in the sun all day. Still never learning that sunblock is a good thing (as long as it’s ocean-friendly).
One Sunday last June 2016, my sister and I joined a regular fun freedive session organized by Dive Ta Bai in Davao. I finally got the chance to take my mermaid fins out again.
Freediving or mermaiding for the first time with real freedivers, it was freedom unlike any other. This mermaid was free to dive as deep as she could, for as long as she liked.
This photo was taken on the first stop of the day in Sabang, Kaputian. It was my first time to see what was underneath the water. Amazingly, there were still corals in the area.
Sabang is a small nook composed of limestone cliffs that have been a frequent hangout of the locals living in Samal Island. If you’re familiar with this place, it’s the one with the grotto on top of one of its cliffs.
Throughout the years, it’s fame for cliff diving spread to tourists, nearby Davaeños and mermaids.
Now, people can rent a boat and visit the place to dive one of its three cliffs aptly labeled according to its height – Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3.
I haven’t seen Level 3 but locals who have jumped it say you have to be almost drunk to do it.
I have jumped Level 2 in Sabang. Four times already actually. No, I was not drunk and did not need to be. Adrenaline and pride was enough to keep me going.
The first two jumps were way back in 2011. The next was in 2012. Each time, I almost didn’t jump. And each landing always hurt. But I didn’t want to be the girl that didn’t jump. So I did.
It was great visiting this place again. Good times. Good memories.
Somehow, I felt bittersweet seeing how the place looked like now. It’s a story for another time though. ♡♡♡
Special thanks to Anne Dods for inviting us and the Davao crew of Dive Ta Bai for being fun and passionate about allowing others to safely enjoy freediving our seas.