When I was researching on the “Best Places to Visit in Busuanga, Palawan”, an article on the Calauit Wildlife Sanctuary caught my attention. It showed me several pictures of zebras and giraffes in the remote Calauit Island, northwestern coast of Palawan. I must have been living under a rock since I really had no idea that our country had African animals so that’s why it surprised me. I’ve never seen a Zebra or a giraffe in my life either. I immediately told Judd about it and he was excited himself too! Since we were going to Coron, we might as well include this in our itinerary.
Imagine a safari in the Philippines where animals roam freely… I really was stoked for this adventure in the wild.
On the day of our safari, we were told to get ready by 5 am since Calauit Island is a 4 hour boat ride from Coron Town. To maximize our stay and to enjoy island hopping, we really got up extra early that day.
I was greeted by this lovely sunrise while we were bound for Calauit at 6 in the morning.
On the way to Calauit Island, you can really see a lot of virgin islands, private islands and resorts and more limestone formations.
After our 4 hour journey, we finally arrived at our destination. I was thrilled to finally experience the safari!
That’s our boat on the left of this photo. A cute wooden walkway will lead you to the island.
We were told that we had a jeepney to take us around the reserve. Since a group came earlier than us, we had to wait for a little bit. While waiting, we got to meet our tour guide who was very entertaining, approachable, informative and kind. He brought us to the reserve and we were greeted by the giraffes from Kenya.
Calauit Safari Park covers almost 3800 hectares. This safari park was established on the year 1976 by Presidential Proclamation 1578 issued by President Ferdinand Marcos.
The animals were all brought to the Philippines from Africa by boat, MS Salvador if i’m not mistaken. The green island was transformed to a savannah — its residents relocated and its bamboo forests cleared to provide a suitable environment for the animals.
The best part of coming early was getting to feed the giraffes. Yes, they allowed us to feed! There are more than 20 giraffes in this island. I only remember three of their names though — Isabel, Terrence and Miller.
Look at Judd’s shirt! I say he was twinning with the Zebras. So tell me, who wore it better? Lol
The animals are free to run around and explore the island. Talk about, YOLO. Hahaha i kid.
Aside from the pretty zebras and amazingly tall giraffes, they were also other animals we had to see.
Here’s a cute porcupine!
Some baby crocs too.
Wild bearded pig, which is endemic to Palawan
And of course, how can I forget the Calamian deer? The Calamian deer is endemic to Palawan and is an endangered species but their population has improved in the park.
Thank you to our trusty driver and his jeep for the safari experience in Little Africa.
That 3 1/2 boat ride to theCalauit Island was absolutely worth it upon seeing these lovely zebras and giraffes! No need to go to Kenya in Africa to see these animals live in action.
I hope this entry was helpful and made you add “Calauit Safari” to your list.