Adventure trail within the city
For three years now, 29-year-old Norman Borres has been taking on a second job as a tour guide for local and foreign tourists visiting the Kabang Falls in the upland barangay of Budlaan in Cebu City.
Working as a family driver in the morning, Borres earns from P200 to as much as P800 by leading visitors to the two-kilometer rugged trail that leads to the falls.
“We don’t have a regular pay for guiding tourists and there’s now an entrance fee in the falls. We just depend on how much the tourists give us,” he said in Cebuano.
Acting Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella, who visited the falls yesterday with the city’s disaster risk reduction management officials, ordered officials of barangay Budlaan to come up with a development plan for the area.
Labella and a contingent of officials and reporters took more than an hour to walk from the barangay hall through a mountain slope with only stone foot paths to prevent them from sliding off the muddy terrain.
There are no hand-railings or even ropes to hold on to when going down the slope.
At one point, the group had to cross a small river to get to the other side and hike up another hillside.
“It wasn’t easy getting here, but when we have reached, you’ll see that it’s like paradise also. Most especially for tourists,” Labella said.
Budlaan barangay chairperson Nerissa Antolihao said there were three people who drowned in the pool below the falls.
The latest was a 17-year-old student from Cagayan de Oro City, Marjoe Edquilla.
Edquilla was with members of the football team of the University of Southern Philippines Foundation when they went to the area.
Rescue teams took more than four hours to retrieve the boy’s body from the deep pool.
“We have to make regulations to secure the safety of people going here. The Kabang Falls could be a tourist attraction, an adventure tourist spot,” Labella said.
Labella said he’ll present the development plan of the Kabang Falls to the City Council.
He also said he may invite some councilors to visit the site and see the area for themselves.
Labella said he will also talk with the Department of Tourism (DOT) about the falls.
“The falls was visited by tourists as early as 2000. If this was developed way before, we would have generated a lot of income already,” Antolihao said.
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