by: BA Recebido
Donsol, Sorsogon (April 21) — “Mesmerizing…Magnificent… Enchanting… Breathtakingly Wonderful!” were the very words uttered by the group of tri-media practioners from Sorsogon after the astounding interaction with the ‘Gentle Giants of the Deep’ – the Butanding.
A lady media who participated during the Media Familiarization Tour of Donsol Whale Shark Interaction but doesn’t want to be identified said she promotes Donsol’s Butanding for several years now to her relatives, friends and acquaintances but never that she had the opportunity to personally experience the real adventure. “I only learned what I share to them through information from video, reading stuffs and stories from friends who had been in the place,” she said.
“But with the opportunity given to us, we now have our own story to tell, from the very hospitable and accommodating guides who were so patient in bearing with us considering that we are neither swimmers nor diver either, and down to the actual experience of catching a glimpse of almost ten amazing Butandings in just less than three hours,” she added.
Lynn Jimenez, reporter of DWLH-FM said that as a first timer in the experience of Butanding interaction, an extraordinary feeling mesmerized her. “I could truly say we are very lucky to be given such wonderful endowment of nature, and hopefully, we’ll help each other to protect these creatures so that the next generation may also experience the same beauty and bounty of God’s given gift to us,” she also said.
The Media Familiarization Tour held on April 15 was sponsored by the Department of Tourism Regional (DOT) Office V in partnership with the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Sorsogon Information Center and the Committee on Tourism of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Sorsogon.
DOT V Director Maria O. Ravanilla said that hordes of tourists, both foreign and domestic, flock to take a glimpse and interact with this sea creatures and they also do not want the local media here to miss the most-sought after Bicol tourism destination and at the same time our way of thanking the media for supporting us in popularizing and promoting our local tourism assets.
“About 3 years ago, DOT sponsored a Media Familiarization of Donsol Whale Shark Tour/Interaction for the members of the tri-media, but unfortunately, there were no sightings. Last summer, we again planned to hold the same, however, the very slim chance for the whale sharks to appear in view of the heavy rains compelled the DOT to postpone it,” said Ravanilla.
“This year, we really made sure to push through this exciting adventure-experience for our media,” she added.
As disclosed by Allan Amanse, president, Butanding Interaction Officers (BIO) Association, these gentle giants are spotted from November to May this year in the sea waters of Donsol, the seasonal feeding ground of Butanding (Rhicondon Typus), the world’s largest fish.
Donsol was considered a 5th class municipality not until it was included in the world’s tourism map accelerating it to first class municipality with nearly P70-M Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) yearly.
Local media here, meanwhile, were so grateful to DOT V for the wonderful experience and hospitability extended to them during the said media exposure. (PIA Sorsogon with reports from CLOcfemia)