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Flight chronicles of the backpacker Tutubi, with travelogues, pictures/photos/videos, travel guides, independent and honest reviews, affordable, recommended resorts and hotels (including inns, guesthouses, pension houses, lodges, hostels, condotels, bed and breakfast and other cheap accommodations), commuting guides, routes (sometimes street maps and GPS coordinates/waypoints) and driving directions to answer "how to get there" questions, information and tips on tourism, budget travel and living in Philippines, Exotic Asia and beyond!

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    "Koh Lanta" "Survivor-France" Shooting in Caramoan Peninsula, Camarines Sur

    In his perpetual search of unspoiled beaches, "off the beaten track" destinations and pristine spots in the Philippines, Tutubi has been secretly planning to a much raved about place by backpackers and landscape photographers with their images of picture-perpect Caramoan Peninsula in the Bicol province of Camarines Sur. His plan was halted and probably re-scheduled for next year due to a news item by the Philippine Daily Inquirer about the ongoing location shoot of Survivor-France held in a highly secretive deal that involved declaring the famous Gota Beach as closed due to massive development and construction. Even Camarines Sur's official website had the same declaration that the place is currently closed.

    Video Teaser of Koh Lanta Caramoan on You Tube

    Of cordoning off of tourist spots, there has been buzz lately generated by fellow travelers about the closure of Kayangan Lake in Coron, Calamian Islands, Palawan to give way to the shoot of GMA Kapuso's Dyesebel (the nth incarnation of the classic komiks mermaid character by Mars Ravelo) aggravated by power-tripping Coast Guard personnel who shooed tourists away.

    Regarding Koh Lanta (Survivor France), the show shot episodes in Koh Lanta, a resort island in southern Thailand, then another season in Palawan that wowed French televiewers. This prompted bookings by French vacationers to Palawan.

    Tutubi wants to showcase the Philippines by featuring destinations in the country; he wants to visit the places before they're overrun by the usual tourists and turn the place into another tourist-infested and cacophonic spot like Boracay. With the exposure it's getting now and the development of the place, once Gota beach re-opens in June of this year, expect more people to check the place out and the opening of beach resorts, inns and homestay accommodations. This is good for Bicol tourism but bad for Tutubi. If that happens, Tutubi will just go island-hopping to find his own secluded beach.

    Hope people of Caramoan gets to develop sustainable eco-tourism and not destructive over-development of their pristine place.


    For pictures of Caramoan Peninsula, you may have to wait when Tutubi gets there :P

    How to get to Caramoan Peninsula:

    From manila, you may book flights to Naga City, or commute by an 8-hour bus trip (terminals on EDSA Cubao or Paranaque City near MRT Taft Avenue station). From Naga City, ride a sabang-bound bus for two hours followed by another 2-hour ride, this time by banca (boat) to Quijalo (with two trips daily in the morning). Gota beach, the most popular of Caramoan's pristine beaches is accesible via jeepney ride to Centro (poblacion) followed by a tricycle ride. To to Island-hopping, you may hire boats to take you to various islands nearby.

    A friend of Tutubi who knew the place suggested looking for the barangay captain in case you need driving directions and secure parking.

    Tags: Koh Lanta, Survivor France, Survivor Bulgaria, Survivor Israel

    Labels: , ,

    posted by backpacking philippines @ 8:13 PM,


    At Apr 24, 2008, 11:52:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    koh lanta season 7 in palawan was in fact the most successful of the series and the producers immediately made the decision to choose the philippines for season 8. the ratings for the palawan series grew steadily and beat previous records. and yes, the country was talking about the philippines and palawan. such great PR!

    mikel in france

    At Apr 25, 2008, 9:46:00 AM, Blogger tutubi philippines said...

    mikel, it's good that Koh Lanta ranked high in the ratings game with the Philippines earning the much required promotion. merci beaucoup!

    At Apr 25, 2008, 8:46:00 PM, Anonymous Filipinayzd said...

    That's cool Mike. I hope Koh Lanta Caramoan will match or surpass Palawan's ratings.

    Tutubi, how do you cut your posts?

    At Apr 26, 2008, 8:55:00 AM, Blogger tutubi philippines said...

    filipinayzd, hope so too. what do you mean by "cut my posts," you mean expanded posts? posted how i did it in my pathetic blog

    At Apr 26, 2008, 3:06:00 PM, Blogger Filipinayzd said...

    I tried this but it doesn't work in my blog.

    Is it possible to put my "Kategorya" and "Arkayv" widgets in one row? How?

    At Apr 26, 2008, 3:09:00 PM, Blogger Toe said...

    I've been to Kayangan Lake and I remember jumping up and down the boat because I was so excited about its beauty!

    What a shame for the tourists who were shooed away.

    I'm sure you'll be successful in discovering secluded beaches in the Philippines Tutubi! :)

    At May 2, 2008, 12:39:00 PM, Blogger dr_clairebear said...

    recently visited caramoan, nakakapanghinayang that the main beaches were closed. the islands we visited were also gorgeous nonetheless. hope to go back before the tourism boom... next year may be too late.

    on a different note, my friends and i are on a hunt for secluded, undiscovered beaches that are just a few hours from manila. do you happen to have any suggestions?

    would appreciate it if you could let me know via my contact form found on my blog. thanks!

    At May 9, 2008, 1:35:00 AM, Blogger reedeth said...

    hi family and i (inc. our 2 yr old kid) have been looking for a nice beach to stay where it isnt too expensive and developed..and i saw your blog along with other write ups about were talking about the koh lanta thingy..if we decide to go there by think we wont be allowed to go there? if we are, can you give more details on how to go there and where to stay and maybe contacts? we will be travelling from vietnam, so i want to know more specific things about the trip so i can plan it carefully since we are travelling with a kid, and a continous plane ride - bus - jeepney - tricyle ride would be out of the question as the baby would probably be throwing tantrums...thank you in advance!

    At May 9, 2008, 10:40:00 PM, Blogger tutubi philippines said...

    dr clairebear, help me define "few hours from Manila" first. AFAIK, there's none that can qualify if few hours is just 4 unless you take a plane :P

    At May 9, 2008, 10:44:00 PM, Blogger tutubi philippines said...

    reedeth, by July Survivor France shoot is over. I think it's wraped this this week. no resorts there as of this time so you may face inconvenience particularly your baby. July also you might encounter typhoons :(

    At May 19, 2008, 12:09:00 AM, Blogger reedeth said...

    Thanks tutubi! I might just postpone the trip until the typhoon season is over :-)

    At May 30, 2008, 2:02:00 PM, OpenID yasmin the light said...

    Indeed the Philippines is far too beautiful to stay in one place.

    My friends and I were also supposed to go island-hop at Gota, Lahus and Lahuy Islands at Caramoan this summer but it was ruined by the "Survivor" shooting there.we settled in a small island called Aguiringan Island instead, still at Caramoan. We vowed to come back before the year ends.

    At May 30, 2008, 2:17:00 PM, OpenID yasmincabansag said...

    indeed the philippines is far too beautiful to stay in one place.

    our group was also one of the "unfortunates" who travelled 11+ hours to go island-hop at Caramoan this summer, only to be greeted by a disguised "massive development" notice instead of "Survivor: French Edition shooting. sigh. we settled ourselves instead in the small but still beautiful island of Aguiringan, still at Caramoan.

    if you wanna have a glimpse of how Caramoan peninsula is set to become the next big thing, search it on you tube. key word: 10 reasons to go to Caramoan.

    At Jun 11, 2008, 9:36:00 PM, Anonymous Herzon Bien said...

    Aguirangan isn't part of Caramoan. It's part of Presentacion. Kawawa naman sila baka sabhihin nila inaangkin ng mga taga-Caramoan 'yung island. Thanks. By the way, I nominated Caramoan sa New 7 Wonders of Nature pero di pa official nominee kasi kailangan pa ng official supporting committee. I already informed the mayor to form the committee, so guys please kung sakaling maging official na ang nomination, please vote Caramoan National Park. Thank you.

    At Jul 19, 2008, 2:18:00 AM, Blogger Isabetlog said...

    I went to Caramoan a little over two years ago, right when they were first developing the place (they were still excavating the grounds for CWC then). It was just perfect, with not a single person in any of the islands I went to.

    After the shoot of Survivor France, I believe there are 2 more Hollywood movies to be shot there too, so you can imagine the surge of tourists after that. If anyone's planning on traveling there anytime soon, you might want to check with their tourism office first if the place is open to the public.

    At Sep 19, 2008, 8:42:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    There is now a high end accommodation in Caramoan, its called Gota Village Caramoan, those who are interested to visit can check their website.

    At Sep 19, 2008, 3:32:00 PM, Blogger tutubi said...

    anonymous, yeah, i already saw it on some in-flight magazines. I think it's Gota Beach Resort something...but high-end and therefore pricey :(

    At Sep 20, 2008, 10:52:00 PM, Anonymous louwiegie said...

    My bf & friends recently went to caramoan.we stayed at gota village resort. We really enjoyed our stay there. accommodation & service was great! Except for no telephone lines& telecom signals aside from smart, so better bring enough cash coz credit cards are not accepted yet. We went on island hopping & fortunate enough to have souvenir pix from the said islands that were part of koh-lanta caramoan. The beaches were superb, one island had very fine sand like a part in panglao,bohol. We had a blast there, hope to get back there someday.☼

    At Dec 15, 2008, 4:47:00 PM, Anonymous Arild Sandberg said...

    Going to Carmoan Islands, Mabe Kayaking might be intresting for you if so you can take a look at

    At Jan 26, 2009, 1:21:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Tutubi, mag-layug ka man sa, This is a US based promotional web about exploring and introducing to adventurists all over the world. We have Vista del Mar Guest Home, La Playa Beach Resort with 10-cottages of comfortable and very reasonable ( cheapest prices in caramoan ), Matukad Island adventure, Lahuy ( ala Florida Beach US ) Island, Pilgrimage on top of Mt. Caglago ( panoramic view of the pacific and the almost 100-small Islets around ), Game Fishing, motorboating, Island Hopping, cave hunting, and name them, etc..we will give you the best of all the adventure-safari in a life time. Sometime, ending April and May, we will have Caramoan Idol search ( ala, American Idol contest ),a caramoan-pacman discovery. We are offering a 45-minutes boat travel from Sabang-Guijalo ports..Just open ( website ) and you'll find the caramoan adventure-Safari offer of a life time ( you can make an email to: or ). Million thanks ( salamat, mabalos, marahay na aga or marahay na aldao, saindo gabos !...WELCOME..Vista del Mar or La Playa Beach Resort and matukad island adventure !!!!!!...D'rick...

    At Nov 19, 2009, 4:49:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    We are a family of 4 who have been travelling to remote places since the children were babies,always prepared to blend in and learn about the local cultures, It's getting more and more difficult to find places unspoilt by mass tourism. In a quest to find a new place to visit and explore, I was really disappointed to read that Kayangan Lake in Coron had been closed to tourists due to some TV show. having visited Coron a couple of years ago, we could see that it wouldn't be long before the mainstream took over and ruined the place. We have already seen Koh Lipe in Thailand invaded by some silly hotel. Goodness knows where the sewage is going. The island could barely cope with all the beach huts, let alone some big silly hotel. If only it was the locals that benefited from the tourism, it wouldn't be so bad, but usually (as in Koh Lipe with the Chao Leh) it's highly unlikely. Certainly before our next trip will be making sure the island we visit isn't going to be taken over by some television crews. Thanks for the advice.

    At Jan 24, 2010, 2:54:00 PM, Anonymous PietandGina said...

    Gota Village in Caramoan is a top end resort, owned by the province of Camarines Sur. The lower staff (restaurant, boatmen) are doing a great job. Unfortunately the management of Gota is poor and not applying to the guest’s needs at all. Don’t be surprised when you find out the day before that the daily afternoon ferry service (for Gota guests only) will be out of order only for that particular day and that you should take the early morning service instead. Don’t be surprised when you get up early the following morning that the 7am early morning service is not there and that the management knew that it would be postponed for 2 hours already the evening before but informed only some (and not all) of the departing guests. When you complain to the management, they convince you not to take the public ferry since it would still take longer than the Gota-ferry. They assure you that the Gota-ferry will leave at 9am sharp. Don’t be surprised when you are finally inside the boat at 9am, that the management tells the captain of the boat to wait for another 1,5 hours for some other Gota-guests (2 photo models and their crew) who were in the resort together with us and who were planning to leave the resort around 10:30am in the first place). According to the captain of the boat this kind of things happen a lot because of the logistic management. The management tried to convince me that it was all to blame on the captain and his crew, but I have seen with my very own eyes that the captain got orders from the management not to leave and wait for the models). If you like to visit Caramoan, I suggest to stay in one of the pensions in Caramoan town proper instead. If you want to stay in top end resorts only, there are many alternative and good resorts in Palawan/El Nido/Busuanga for example that offer much more.

    At Aug 21, 2010, 4:22:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I understand that the Gov. of Camarines Sur is instrumental in building the CWC and Gota Beach to attract international tourism. Perhaps he should answer as to why such poor public service is being given to general visitors of Gota Beach. Such personalities usually have a personal interest at the expense of the public but end-up being hailed as a champion of the people. How could tourism for ordinary people stand-still for just a select-group of models,movie-makers, crew and publicity agents? It is disgusting!!!!


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