Location: Monkayo, Compostela Valley
Types: Cascade, Multi-step, Fan horsetail

For the first day of my ten-day Chasing Waterfalls Project: Davao and SOCCSKSARGEN Edition, it was necessary that I stay overnight in Nabunturan.

It was out of familiarity and convenience. I already spent overnight in the Compostela Valley capital in November 2012. And coming from Mainit Hot Spring, it was almost 4PM when I reached Mawab. So I needed to find an accommodation rather quick before dusk and to rest right away. Of course, I haven’t had a decent sleep for more than 24 hours.Awao Falls in Monkayo, Compostela ValleyAfter finishing off an instant coffee the following morning, I checked out and headed to the integrated transport terminal where I took a bus passing by the town of Monkayo. From there I looked for a habal-habal that would take me to Awao Falls. With a prior information going to the falls, I agreed to the driver’s asking price of P500 for the whole trip.

Awao Falls in Monkayo, Compostela ValleyThe long habal habal trip passed through scenic winding roads made slippery by intermittent January rains. And even during that morning, a light drizzle made the sky overcast which was perfect for my intended photo shoot.

Awao Falls in Monkayo, Compostela Valley
Awao Falls has several tiers and this is the second upper and the most easily accessible.

As the driver parked his vehicle by the road side, I carefully waded through the rushing cool waters to cross the river. That side had offered a better view of the second tier of Awao Falls.

Awao Falls in Monkayo, Compostela Valley
This uppermost tier of Awao Falls provides more character and beauty.

The guide that we took from a nearby village tipped me off that there was another tier atop of this waterfall. After carefully studying the rock formation, I immediately scaled and reach the topmost tier of Awao Falls. It was yet another majestic sight to behold!

Awao Falls in Monkayo, Compostela ValleyBefore I would be completely engulfed by the natural charm of the first tier, I went down to see more what Awao Falls has to offer. A hundred meters or so from the second tier were streams invariably split that exuded a magical feel. These lead to the highest tier of them all.

Awao Falls in Monkayo, Compostela ValleyUnfortunately for me that day, I was unable to gaze upon the beauty of that tier of Awao Falls. The rains rendered the trail to be more slippery and more risky to negotiate. In a sense it was disappointing.

Nevertheless in hindsight the two hours that I spent in Awao Falls was more than satisfying. And that moment I strongly hinted of going back here in the future to complete an unfinished business. But first I had to go back to the town proper as the rain begun to pour.

Note: This is part of LegendHarry‘s ambitious travel project: Chasing Philippine Waterfalls. This is also part of his January 26 – February 4, 2015 Davao and SOCCSKSARGEN Backpacking Trip.


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