Call it a cave, call it a pool, to me this spot is a freaking goldmine. If it wasn’t for a little sign on the side of the road, I would probably pass by without even considering the possibility that there would be a hidden gem behind a fence, some trees and bushes.
There is something mystical about this place that makes me feel like I’m in the middle of the jungle. Maybe it’s the fresh cold cave water. Maybe it’s the swing that brought out the Tarzan in me. Probably the coolest cave I’ve been to so far, but then again the amount of times I visited a cave can be counted on probably one hand.
After spending the majority of my time swinging away, practicing my ooh-ooh- Tarzan sounds (luckily I was by myself, apart from the guide who didn’t really seem to give a shit either), I finally came to the realisation that we still had to enter the cave itself. This random kid followed us into the cave and he seemed to know the place quite well as he climbed up the walls like a little monkey boy. So off we went, monkey boy, Tarzan, and guide, let’s call him Terk for the sake of this story. Terk was holding the flashlight to prevent me from bumping against the rocks, which he failed in doing so. I don’t blame him. The narrow path in the water makes it feel like you’re stuck in a maze looking for some kind of treasure, or daylight. Flashlight-holding Terk showed us some stalactites here and there, and a bat painted coconut to scare us. Luckily Tarzan and monkey boy are scared of nothing.
At the end of the cave walk we find a rope hanging to guide us to the exit. As brave and heroic as I was, I decided to hang onto it upside down, while singing the soundtracks of James Bond. And oh boy, if you’re reading this, don’t try this out. As we left the cave, monkey boy noticed a scratch on Tarzan’s back that later turned into a bleeding back. But luckily Tarzan doesn’t cry often. In front of monkeys. This nonetheless did not ruin my experience at the cave.
Here is a little background information on the natural formation of the cave. The cave water turns out to be natural ground water that is exposed after a limestone surface collapsed. For those of you who are interested, the technical name of the cave is a twin cenote. Only beginning last year the cave has been open to the public. If you want to find out more about Tayangban Cave Pool, check this blog.
Ideally you can visit the Tayangban cave after the Magpupungko rock pools on your way back to General Luna, if you’re staying in this area of course. Also the fresh water from the Tayangban cave makes the trip back a bit more comfortable after swimming in the salty ocean water of the rock pools.
Location: Pilar, Siargao click here to see it on the map
Fee: 70php for pool and cave tour and 20php for pool only. (Special rates apply for locals and residents)