Hinoba-an’s natural treasures

NEGROS. Showing the boxes of fishes freshly caught at the shores of Hinoba-an. (Photo by Carla N. Cañet)
NEGROS. Showing the boxes of fishes freshly caught at the shores of Hinoba-an. (Photo by Carla N. Cañet)

THE town of Hinoba-an, a first-class municipality in the Province of Negros Occidental, has a lot of gems to be excited about.

Tourists get astounded by the splendor of its nature such as the white sand beaches with coral reefs, pristine blue waters, mangrove plantations that sustained a century-old variety, dive spots, the historical Obong cave with elegant formation of mineral deposits of stalactites and stalagmites, the fish port where a multitude of fishes abound every day, mountains that perfectly subsist as a backdrop of the beaches and the entire place, catching sight of the gloriousness of the sun rising in the morning and setting in the afternoon.

A group of Japanese tourists joined Negrense philanthropist Eleanor A. Fukuda who came to visit her hometown recently.

They went to Hinoba-an over the weekend as a sort of a mini-reunion for their group of artists, business partners, media friends and others who collaborated with her Filipino Japanese group during the staging of the recent Philippine Festival held in Tokyo, Japan.

It was refreshing to go back home for a while and met with friends and project collaborators for a short bonding, she said.

Japanese tourists Tsukashi Ikeshita and Keije Yoshida who belonged to the Japan Negros Friendship Association and the eye candy with the boy next door vibe Yusuke Sakurai came with Fukuda and explored some beautiful sites in the province.

Fukuda said that these Japanese tourists and guests are here to see for themselves the province.

Their visit could enable them to define the prospects for the province in terms of enterprises that are already available in Japan, which hopefully can be replicated here once it reaches the awareness of the investors.

This is, of course, a blend of work and play. “But I am happy to bring them here so that, they can also help spread their good impression they have about our province, Fukuda said.

They met with Hinoba-an Mayor Ernesto Estrao and Vice Mayor Jefre Encoy at Fukuda Machi as arranged by Eric and Gina Tenerife.

Big catch of fishes abound in Asia Village

Barangay Asia, the home of the fish port in Hinoba-an through Kagawad Vicente Ba-al, wife Marie Den Ba-al, Purok 1 President Mary Quilla, and Mary Ann Gandisela Pabalati, President of Asia Small Farmers Association and Secretary of Bolila Island Mangrove Community, welcomed the Japanese group and others and treated them to a fresh fish breakfast at the vacant lot of Kagawad Ba-al’s residence which is adjacent to the fish port.

As it was a season of mackerel tuna “Aloy”, squid and other variety of fishes, the guests partook their breakfast by the sea with the “sinugba na aloy, lukus and tinola na isda,” with much enthusiasm.

The tastes of fresh fishes are really different and it’s good to dip the sinugba na isda in a local concoction of sinamak (spicy vinegar) with soy sauce and tomato slices. Some even ate with their bare hand.

Kagawad Ba-al and Mary Pabalati led the group to Bolila island, a place where mangrove plantation is located. It is found in Purok 8 in Barangay Asia, a 15-minute boat ride from the fish port.

Pabalati serving as the boat woman led the group to a maiden island that houses mangroves. There exists a century-old mangrove that has already turned into a gigantic tree.

The town is building a community information center in the middle of the mangrove plantation. It is where you can find the best diving spot with pristine water, surrounded by beautiful mountains from a distance.

The travel experience was fun and educational, the group said.

They were pleased and delighted of the said short trip. Thanks to the tourist-friendly hospitality extended to the group especially to Mayor Estrao and his group, Kagawad Ba-al with his fellow officials as well as his family who were very accommodating to welcome the group to their simple abode.


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