Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Salakot Waterfalls - Napsan

The falls in November. Water is cold and with
sediments during rainy season. Everyone swam except me.
Too cold for me then. Giant trees and tall tree ferns
dot the sides of the river. This is the view from the old
foliage overgrown bridge leading nowhere.
Click Photo to enlarge.
UPDATE-May 2, 2016

Since they have paved the road to Napsan, which this waterfall is off of, it is no longer an isolated adventure. There is now a 10.00 php fee to get in, and this summer, when we went there were so many local jumping off the top of the falls and we have yet to go there when no one is there anymore.

Off the beaten track, and not in Puerto Princesa really, are the Salakot Waterfalls. They are down the south National Highway, past Iwahig prison, coming from Puerto Princesa City, and then down to a wooden sign that says Napsan, turn there and keep going about 40 Kilometers, maybe a little more. The road is now mostly paved, but the portions that are not are rough and rocky.

We are not those who enjoy crowds or yearn for services when we venture out seeking rivers and waterfalls to cool off in, or just for a gentle adventure.  We pack up all we will need for the day. From our house in Luzviminda it's about a 40 minute drive. From Puerto Princesa City, I would venture to say it would take an hour 1/2 or a little more.

They have paved the road and now many people go to this waterfalls.

Salakot Waterfalls in late April 2012. Cold pristine waters. This
is the upper falls. Above this, you can climb the rock face and
get to another view of the river and it's shady and peaceful.
The area is still raw, with no services whatsoever. In fact only an old arch sign signals it's existence. A rock step trail leads to a beautiful primordial tropical forest and soon enough the falls.

Only a 2 or 3 minute walk from the road is an old bridge what leads nowhere that allows a full view of the two main falls and pools to swim in.  The upper falls is the easiest to swim in, even for toddlers such as ours, with supervision.
Old arch sign on right side of road approximately 40 to 42 kms.
off the National HWY South going to Napsan,

Salakot Waterfalls was one of our favorite places until they paved up the road to Napsa. For those seeking solitude and natural untouched beauty, this is a place you will enjoy. Do bring mosquito repellent, sun block, your own towels, food etc. as there is no one there at all to help you or offer you services.

The drive there is dotted with mini waterfalls and several varieties of wild gingers. A long river is on the right side of the road all along the way to the falls. You go through beautiful and untouched forests. Occasionally we have seen troops of monkeys and huge monitor lizards crossing the road. Even the drive there, if you don't get to the falls, is worth it if you are a nature enthusiast loving untouched places.

All along the road to the falls are many other dirt roads leading down to the river that follows it. One of these days we will venture down them and explore new areas.

Lately a lot of people have been thronging to Puerto Princesa to see the Underground River, but it is, a I write, fully booked all of May and June, and needs booking a month in advance anymore, I thought I would feature some other places for those who would rather not follow the crowds.

Do be a good eco-tourist and bring your own trash bags to haul trash out. And if you really care, do pick up some of the other trash other's have left, just for the love of Mother Earth.

Also, if you keep going on the road past the falls another few kilometers, you will wind up at Napsan beach. We haven't gotten that far, but one of these days will go. Not much there I hear, but nice clean beaches.

Our main swimming hole at the falls. The rock face on the right, when the waters are low, can be climbed without too much
trouble and there are other spots to hang out in the shade and it's a great view of the falls from another perspective.
The second pool is less accessible. On the far upper left of the photo you can see the main falls where the pool we swim in is. This photo was taken last April 22, 2012.
The upper pool has little fish you can feed. They are always so hungry. But don't worry, they don't nip at you when you swim.
The waters have worn a sort of slide going to the lower pool.
In the summer you can climb the rock wall on the right and there is another part of the river to explore.


The road to the falls has much improved and much of it is paved and the scenery is fabulous as you go through pristine forests with tall, tall trees.

This is one of the trees on the road to Salakot Waterfalls!
Watch a video of our last trip to Salakot Falls in January- 2014



No comments: