Surigao Escapade – Stingless Jelly Fish Sanctuary

Yours truly with Matt, Blaire and Mr. Ajop of DOT.

Our tour guide, Reggie who was assigned by the Department of Tourism Officer, Mr. Rolando Ajop, picked us up from the resort past 7am . We boarded Partas 30 mins later. Compared to the boat that picked us up at Hayanggabon Port, Partas was a lot bigger. From what I understand, it is owned by a lawyer who has a private resort nearby. They borrowed it to accomodate our request for a bigger boat. 🙂 I am so glad that I coordinated with DOT because everything was perfect during our sohoton tour!

Islands on our way to Sohoton.

The moment we docked at Sohoton Tourism Center, Mr. Ajop met us. Then, we were shown the aerial map of Sohoton while their staff gave us coffee. A few minutes later, we boarded the paddle boats.

John, Pearlie and Kuya Dodong at the Sohoton Tourism Center.

Paddle Boats at the Stingless Jelly Fish Sanctuary.

My nephews, Matt and Blaire, started travelling with us at the age of 3. That was 9 years ago. 🙂

The boat ride was short but very scenic. Since Sohoton is a cove, the whole area has very calm waters. It was glistening due to the sun’s reflection. I could see the corals underneath. Everything was sooooo beautiful!

The view on the way to the sanctuary.

Motorized boats are not allowed at the Jelly Fish Sanctuary because it will disturb them. Big boats cannot enter as well due to the small opening. It seemed like you’re entering the small gate to a kingdom. At least, that’s what it felt to me.

The Entrance to the Stingless Jelly Fish Sanctuary.

My sister, Daisy , with youngest son Franco. 🙂

Manong, my boat driver, was very nice. He drove us farther ahead so I could take pictures of my family as they enter the sanctuary.

As we proceeded, we were all so quiet. You just couldn’t help it. It seemed like whatever you wanted to say is not important. I felt like I was in holy ground and that I had to respect the place.  Its beauty was incomparable to anything I’ve seen. There’s just calmness there that I don’t know how to explain. I was in awe.

Now I understand, why motor boats are not allowed inside the sanctuary…. It would only ruin the mystique of the place.

August is not the stingless jelly fish season. This is their breeding time. So we saw a small number of them. But Manong was kind enough to point out that the  dirts (I thought) that were in the water, are actually jelly fish babies. They’re very tiny , they looked like yellow dots amidst the turqoise water. 🙂

The water was so clear. Manong showed me the different colors of rocks. Not corals, but colored rocks too underneath. Unbelievable!

The first stingless jelly fish I saw. 🙂

My brother inlaw, Ruben.

Please remember, do not hold them too long, because they will die if you take them out of the water for a few minutes.  And please be careful. I’ve seen jelly fishes that do not have its complete set of tentacles. Manong said that sometimes the tourists don’t handle them with care. 😦  It’s very sad. So please, let us support the sanctuary by respecting the place and the jelly fishes.

My aunt, Nanay Ligaya. 🙂

I was so amazed when I saw several jelly fishes. They looked like yellow flowers floating in the water. 🙂

See the dot-like pieces on the water? These are jelly fish babies. They are so tiny , I thought they were dirts. 🙂

Me and Manong. 🙂

Stingless Jelly fish.

The view at the sanctuary.

As we go out the sanctuary.

Limestone Karst.

Beautiful right?! 🙂

The paddle men. 🙂 Fisherman’s association of Sohoton. Thank you po for your wonderful service!

Manong Osting, he used to be our driver but has retired now, and his paddle boat driver had a conversation. The boatman told him that they’re so happy of the Tourism’s effort to protect Sohoton. And for giving them their jobs. That’s why they do their best to help the tourists enjoy their vacation so they would come back or recommend their place.

He said that they’re all fishermen. True they are abundant of great sea food (isda sa bato and the likes – yummy!)  but it’s useless when you have no buyers.

Manong Osting and his paddle boat driver. 🙂 Photo courtesy of my sister.

That’s why I really commend the Department of Tourism for the SAVE SOHOTON project. By booking through DOT , we are helping them maintain the area. And we are giving the fishermen and the other locals , jobs.

Our paddle drivers never asked for money. But we tipped them for the good service.  They looked so happy! 🙂 I thought , what’s little for us may be big for them…

Thank you Mr. Ajop and company!

If you ever go to Bucas Grande Islands, please book through the Department of Tourism.  Remember, the fishermen grew up in the area. So they know the place perfectly. If you ask me, that’s a lot safer than going there on your own without a guide.

Mr. Rolando Ajop – 09399047019

And please, don’t litter. The place is so clean , it would seem like a crime if you throw plastic or whatever garbage you have. Let’s be responsible tourists. And let’s help the locals in protecting Sohoton. 🙂

Check the view behind me… 🙂

Lea C. Walker


About leawalkerblog

Businesswoman. Realtor. Photographer. Traveler. Blogger.
This entry was posted in My Travels, Surigao and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Surigao Escapade – Stingless Jelly Fish Sanctuary

  1. Pingback: Surigao Escapade – Stingless Jelly Fish Sanctuary | leawalkerblog «

  2. So beautiful! I’m glad I stumbled upon your blog post about the stingless jellyfish. Makes me excited for my trip next week! 🙂


    • Hi Gabz,

      One of my best vacations was our trip to Bucas Grande Islands. The place is so amazing. Makes me proud to be a Filipino. 🙂

      The stingless jellyfish sanctuary felt like a holy ground. It’s difficult to explain. I think you will understand better when you’re there na.

      Enjoy your trip and take care!

      Lea C. Walker


  3. francisjames says:

    Together with my friends, we are planning on going to Sohoton this summer. I’m so happy that i stumble upon your blog!! Perfect!!


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