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#69 9th. July 2012 (orig. #78)

Moalboal July 2012

Hi, friends of Moalboal!!

We have low season now but still quite a lot of tourists. Even though it's rainy season, we do have a few sunny days inbetween days with light rain. June/July/August is actually a nice time to visit.

The Philippines and Cebu is attracting a lot of interest at the moment. Tourists that wants to go somewhere else than Thailand and investors leaving the Euro zone. The stock market is hitting all time highs on a regular basis and the peso is unfortunately getting stronger.

They are building like crazy in Cebu city with new buildings popping up weekly. Many new hotels have been built and more are coming. The hotels now have already an 20% overcapacity so you can make good deals on rooms.

The first 3 months of this year had 17% more foreign visitors than last year.

They are right now installing a fiver optic cable from CarCar towards Moalboal. Phase one will be for TV and later also internet. I like it that they are digging mostly by hand. Good for employment and no need for machines and fuel.

Dumanjug is supposed to get a Gaisano supermarket this year and the rumor is that White Gold will start to build a Supermarket in Moalboal in December ......... but we have heard things like that before and nothing happens.

As of today, we are 483 readers of the Moalboal mailing List.

ACTIVITIES:

Pool tournament at Chili bar every Wednesday. Piolo and Katz are not here so there's a chance for us non-ninjas to win. Peter (Czech Republic) won last Wednesday.

BIRTHS, SOCIAL AND GOSSIP:

Nancy's hole in the wall restaurant up in Moalboal has closed. I'm not sure where the Germans will have their lunch beer now.

Jussi and Mika are engaged.

PRACTICAL:

The rumor is that when the politicians come back from their summer vacation they will reverse the decision for heavy tax on airlines that fly long distance to the Philippines. As of today, no airlines from outside SE Asia flies direct to the Philippines.

There is a lot of new budget companies flying to Cebu . If any of you guys have a complete list I would like you to send it to me.

At the moment the exchange rate is:
1 $ = 41.86
1 Euro = 51.44
1 Pound = 64.84
1 Swedish crown = 5.96

WHALE SHARK SIGHTINGS:

They see Whale shark at Pescador almost daily and if that is not enough, there's a Mantaray as well now.

Cebu now has a world attraction. On the south east coast of Cebu, Oslob you can see Whalesharks daily. Many of the dive shops here organize trips there. You can either snorkel or Scuba to see them.

They feed the whalesharks daily with small shrimp so they come back. I will not argue if it is good or bad to feed wild animals but it is such big business now for the fishermen that i doubt it is possible to stop.

They do it in a professional orderly way. First registration and then you have to take a class in "How to interact with Whalesharks" 2500 Peso fine if you touch them. No flash photography.

Last week when I was there, there were 14 Whalesharks around. At one time I could look around and count 5. They have a marine biologist employed fulltime and during the month of June he spotted 42 different ones. I do not know of any other place in the world with that many whalesharks.

GENERAL:

If anyone has any information that they think would be interesting for people on this list, please do let me know and I will add it in. If you know anyone that would like to receive this letter, please tell him or her to send me an E-mail at the address below and I will add him or her. I've found it to hard to do it through:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/moalboalmail

Regards, Lars Starner
starner [at] hotmail.com