From Summit to Sea: My First Paraw Sailing Experience
By: Richard R. Cahilig
After our seven-day exploration in the mountains of Aklan and Antique, Ritchel and I traveled to her home in Malay. While in Malay, Ritchel got a call from a local radio station in Boracay Island for an interview about our recent expedition. Knowing that the interview is scheduled the next day at six in the morning, we decided to go to Boracay in the afternoon that day and stayed overnight at her friend's place. We traveled via paraw, a sailboat used to be a local transport but now considered as one of the most popular tourism activities in Boracay.
Paraw is a tradional Filipino sailboat commonly found in the Visayas. Before Boracay Island became a famous tourist destination, paraws were used for fishing and transportation. Today, it is considered as a special interest activity by tourists who would like to tour around the island and visit its surrounding islets while enjoying its serenity. A paraw has two outriggers and sails. It's hull is made of wood and the outriggers are made of bamboos and logs. The outriggers help the boat balance and prevent it from capsizing. Powered only by the wind, sailing with paraw is a peaceful and very relaxing experience.
We left the mainland at past 3:00 PM. The heat was bearable which made it a perfect time for sailing. We sat on the edge of the outriggers so we can have the full view of the island and the marine life underneath the water. We could feel the waves crushing against our feet while our legs are dangling over the waters as we sail further away from the shore. The cool breeze of the ocean blew gently against our faces while we're sailing along the crystal clear waters of Boracay and enjoying the great view of the white sand in the entire stretch of the front beach.
Soon after we arrived in the island, we decided to stay a little while on the beach before heading to Clark's house, enjoying the turquiose water and the sand. It was my first paraw experience and definitely, a remarkable one.
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