Kiamba is a 2nd class coastal municipality located in Sarangani Province, 1-hour ride from Gensan, 2-hours from Koronadal and 4-hours from Davao – all straight driving. Over the holy week, I, together with new found friends from Marbel (old name for Koronadal City) trooped for an overnight trip in this quaint municipality down South. [See other photos of Kiamba in my Flickr here]
Road was good throughout with scenic view of Celebes Sea and lush mountains. If only I had my way, I could have halted in places I wanted to take images of but with few others whom I just met that day, reservations knocked not only once, but twice, and even more! :)
Kiamba has been recognized once as cleanest and greenest municipality and has been consistently known as child-friendly town. Aqua-culture is the main source of livelihood in this place and one treasure is has is the Tuka Marine Sanctuary composed of 4-coves named “Tukas” 1,2,3 & 4 – only Tuka 2 is open to the public. Boat rent to the marine sanctuary is from P500 – P1,500, depending on the capacity, to and fro. Tuka is white sand (bordering to cream) with coral gardens - snorkling allowed. Found these blogs on Tuka informative: (1)West Coast Sarangani Expedition: Tuka Bay Marine Sanctuary; and (2)Kiamba’s Children Park and Tuka Marine Santuary. This is also the hometown of Jinky Pacquiao and winning vice-governor this coming election is no longer a question at least in this town.
The public market is an old edifice with the second floor still made of wood, a complete opposite of the well-developed public plaza and children’s park called Lourdes Park where the Municipal Tourism Office seats and the jump-off point to Tuka Marine Sanctuary. Observed a lot speaking the Ilocano dialect and I am not surprised, having been based in Mindanao for almost 3-years where Ilocano is spoken by many. [See other photos of Kiamba in my Flickr here]
Most beach in Kiamba is ordinary grey, accessible in a few minutes from the plaza. No spectacular rolling white sand but good enough for people who don’t mind about the view but the company. There are a lot of resorts to stay in the day or overnight and we ended in a beach very near a fishing village. Interestingly, there is an ice plant (Aquino Ice Plant) few steps from our cottage that has a conveyor ramp from the plant to the sea. It may have been built for convenience and neccessity for fishermen to maintain freshness of their catch. Found it worthy and asked permission if I can walk through the ramp to see how ice is transported via the conveyor until its dropping point.
We Stayed in an ordinary fan room cottage at 700/night with CR good for 8. However, water supply at that time was outside, coming from a pipe with continuous spring water – not bad at all, shower was in commune with nature! Dinner was perfect with an all-fresh fish menu from the public market and a few more from the village - bought, cooked and devoured fresh!
Below are satellite maps showing locations of Kiamba in Mindanao, the ice conveyor and the cottage we stayed, and the Lourdes Park where the Tourism Office is located.
To end, Kiamba celebrates its foundation anniversary every Valentines Day called “Timpuyog,” an Ilocano word which means gathering. KIAMBAhan Na!!! [See other photos of Kiamba in my Flickr here]