This Place in Cebu Will Remind You of Planet Namek

Monday, November 16, 2015

If you're a Batang 90s, you're probably lamenting the sorry state of today's late afternoon local TV lineup. While the present generation has Kadena De Amor (?) or something similarly tacky, we had Flame of Recca, Fushigi Yuugi, Slam Dunk, Ghost Fighter, and the classic Dragon Ball Z! What kid didn't rush home from school to tune in to these anime series? I mean, come on, we had our priorities straight back then: Goku first then homework, because that's just how we roll.

Now, I'm going to use nostalgia and wanderlust to inspire you to see the Philippines, because gaddamit, Manila is not the entire country.

I digress. 

You know that picturesque home planet of Piccolo?

This one:
planet namek

Fine, fine. Yes. Frieza destroyed it, then his brother Cooler destroyed the new one, because they are scumbags that's why. Regardless, Planet Namek has one of the most interesting landscapes in the world of anime and manga. Green trees, blue-green ajisa, jagged peaks, and ever blue skies are some of its features. Here's another picture:
real life planet namek
That's the nostalgia part. Now we move on to the wanderlust portion. 

Behold – real-life Planet Namek:
namek
Amazing, isn't it?
This is the view from a place called Osmeña Peak. Located in Mantalongon, Dalaguete (pronounced "Dalaget"), Cebu, Osmeña Peak is approximately 1,000 MASL, making it the highest peak in the island. Its name is derived from the famous Cebu-native Osmeña clan. 

The peak is one of the unique jagged hills that made up the Mantalongon mountain range. This unique clusters overlook and stretch as far as the shorelines of Badian. It is usually considered a twin to Bohol's Chocolate Hills. 
real life planet namek
"I think Vegeta just knocked out Goku."
There are four trails that lead to the "O-Peak": one in Dalaguete (the easiest), and the rest located in Badian – which pass by Kawasan Falls, and Liong. It is open to climbers all year but authorities advise that treks be done during the summer months because the trails get muddy and slippery during the rainy season.
"Ibalik ang anime sa hapon!"
From Mantalongon Market, there are habal-habal for rent that will take you to the jump-off point to the peak. This trail is within a private property so hikers are charged P20. 

Overnight camping is allowed and there is a flat ground that serves as a camp site. On a clear night, the sky is filled with so many stars that you'd be hard-pressed to recognize Orion – the most distinguishable constellation ever. Yup, that's how numerous the visible stars are up there. Here, we had better luck seeing the swirling Milky Way than in Mount Pulag.

The vista in daylight is as majestic as it is at night, if not more. Waking up to a vault of cirrocumulus and a sea of vaporous clouds may be a rare treat but the Namekian landscape will always greet you in Osmeña Peak.

directions to osmena peak
Treated to dramatic cirrocumuli
dalaguete cebu

How to Get There

Take one of the big buses stationed at the South Bus Terminal in Cebu City. Look for buses travelling southwards to Oslob or Bato via Dalaguete and alight at the Dalaguete junction. Here, you can hire a habal-habal (motorcycles) that will take you to the jump-off point.

Going back: You can either hike back to Mantalongon or hike down across the mountain ranges to Badian through Kawasan Falls. But this is a longer route and would require at least half a day. Or just make an arrangement with the habal-habal to wait for or fetch you and give you a ride back to the Dalaguete junction where you can catch hourly buses back to Cebu City.

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So, relive your childhood (and make your adulthood more interesting) by hiking up Osmeña Peak. Who knows? You might even turn into a Super Saiyan.

What do you think? Doesn't this look like Planet Namek? Share your thoughts in the comment section. High-five!

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