Family Fun in the Philippines
Family Fun in the Philippines
On August 3rd 2012 the sailing yacht Philippine Siren was birthed in Cebu yacht club about to embark on the first family diving trip for Worldwide Dive and Sail’s Siren Fleet. Preparations had been made in the months leading up to this departure date with fourteen guests from around the world deciding to join us on their holiday cruise. Finally the day arrived and the guests, including four boisterous children were welcomed aboard. After the boat briefing and emergency drills all settled in for the overnight voyage to Cabilao. Our 2 nannies were on board to assist in keeping the children entertained along with a plethora of planned activities from games, balloon-modelling lessons, magic workshops, treasure hunts, cartoon time on the plasma TV and the Pirate Day, however, all our efforts were eclipsed by the Ipad, which all the kids were accomplished at using!
After Cabilao, we proceeded to Panglao, for two dives before moving on to Balicasag where Barry gave us an expert demonstration on how to paddle a kayak with two children on-board. Ha-ha-ha! It was funny to say the least. Good-going Barry! For our serious divers and photographers, Balicasag was a gem of an island with all the expected blue-water fish and critters one can imagine from schools of jacks and snappers to leaf fish and flatworms. Our families spent some time exploring the islands during the cruise and some of the children took part in the “Bubble Maker” activity. It was obvious that our young guests enjoyed and improved their diving experience and we could see their confidence grow.
From Balicasag we made the crossing over to Sumilon and the highlight of the trip, Oslob, where everybody enjoyed getting up close and personal with the leviathans of the sea; whale sharks. Our parents were in for a bit of a surprise though when they arrived back from their third dive. Serious accusations had been made by their children and a court assembled next to our gang-plank to consider the verdict! Surprise! Surprise! All the parents were found guilty and forced to walk the gang plank and water balloons were thrown at them much to the delight of our little pirates! Contented, our young guests slept very well that night.
The morning found us at Apo Island, a place with unusually large sea snakes, many turtles, bumped-head parrot fish and a variety of nudibranch species. After three dives on Apo Island, we hoisted the sails and the Philippine Siren could be seen in her full glory. Photographs were taken by the guests as we headed to Dauin, Negros, for our final day of muck diving. A storm had been through on our previous trip causing many of the critters to seek shelter elsewhere. However, parents were able to enjoy some superb dives and the children enjoyed their final day on the beach and bubble-making once more. As always our final night was a big success with lots of fun and frolics, laughter and stories shared. Three of our guests are also to be congratulated for passing their Advanced Open-water course, well-done guys!
Thank you so much for deciding to dive and sail with us. We look forward to seeing you again soon. From Cruise Director Paul & all the crew.