ASIK-ASIK FALLS: Journey To The Unspoiled Curtain Waterfall In North Cotabato 25


Asik-Asik Falls is as enchanting as any waterfall can be. Her allure will instantly take you into a page of a fairy tale book. Her magic is irresistible. The kind that will keep you entangled in a seemingly endless dream. She bemuses while slowly working her spell on you. Her pristine waters cascading from stone walls covered in lush curtain-like greens is like no other. She will keep you wondering but she will never ever give away her secrets. She is a tease, keeps you coming back no matter how painfully agonizing are the roads leading to her. Her coldness is excruciatingly refreshing. Just before you know it, she has you completely wrapped in her hands and there’s no more escaping her charm.

THE JOURNEY

I live in Midsayap which is just a town away from Dado Alamada where this beauty is safely tucked from the chaos of the world. When news about it spread amongst my friends like wildfire, I was already in Manila busy with my 9 by 5 life. I would have loved for my eyes to be two of the first to witness this stunner in action. My regrets but I was trying to live the dream in the city. From my friends crazy Facebook accounts, soon Asik-Asik Falls was all over the internet.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

Four years after it was discovered, I finally was able to meet this beaut. It was a day after the start of the year 2016 and a day before I was to return to Metro Manila that I, Ian (The Great Boyfie), Jose (The Undisputed 3rd Wheel), my brother Saboy and his girl Apple, took off for the unknown adventure to Asik-Asik Falls.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

We planned to set out early at 5 in the morning but was not even ready until it was 7 AM. We wanted to ride the double tire (double-tired jeep) to Brgy. Dado Alamada as it was cheaper but since it was a bit late, we had to settle for motorcycles (habal-habal). We spent almost half an hour haggling for the price. Good thing we were with our Dad who was a well known Police Officer in our town as we were closed to being rip off. They were charging us P800/motorcycle as a roundtrip fare to Asik-Asik Falls. With my Dad’s help, we were able to bring it down to P600/motorcycle.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

The ride began through a smooth paved road. The early morning air blowing against us was totally refreshing. Trees along the road obscured the sun which have just risen the cloud filled sky. We passed by several Barangays before reaching the road leading to Brgy. Upper Dado. We stopped for a moment to rest our butts and do some stretching. The ride then resumed along an unpaved road.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

The bumpy ride lasted for over an hour through slopes of rockstrewn road. The paved road then resumed when we were nearing Upper Dado. We reached the busy Brgy. Upper Dado after almost 2 hours of journey. We quickly grabbed a bite, bought some snacks and ran to the washroom. When we were all set, we resumed the ride to an even more precarious uphill road with segments scattered with rocks.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

The uphill ride went on for almost an hour with the final stretch being the most treacherous. The concrete road stopped several miles before reaching the registration point so we had to endure the ragged, too-impossible-to-pass-through-even-for-a-powerful-motorcycle road. There were times when we needed to alight the motorcycles and hike up until it was safe for us to hop on them again. Throughout the journey, I was holding my breath and bracing myself for whatever we may encounter along the way. The only thing I could do to stop my nerve was to engage myself with non-sense conversation with Jose or better yet, admire the beautiful view of the surrounding mountains. After an hour of guessing whether the road can still become ever more difficult, we finally arrived in the registration area shaken but still full of excitement.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

We registered and paid the fees then quickly went to descend the 1500-step stair leading to where Asik-Asik Falls lies. If you think going down is just a walk in the park, think of that no more. It was yet another arduous, knee breaking task. Our descent lasted for another 30 minutes. Upon reaching the base of the stair, we then walk along a ragged terrain, passed through a log and hopped on a small canal before finally being able to gaze at the uniqueness of this once unspoken wonder of nature which haunted me for years.

 

MY 50 CENTS AND OTHER USEFUL INFO

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

My Buddha shot with the photo bomber sa bato 😀

  • Asik-Asik Falls is nothing like anything I have seen before. She was exceptionally beautiful. Her waters cascading from stone walls covered with lush greenery is truly unique to her. I’ve never seen one myself within years of me chasing waterfalls.
  • The waters are cold. One of the coldest I’ve ever bathed in. It is surprisingly potable. My Mom says it has healing powers and works wonder with quenching your thirst that no ordinary water can.
  • Asik-Asik Falls stretches for about 200 meters and she has no catch basin unlike other waterfalls. Her water falls directly to the river which isn’t too deep, makes it perfectlyly safe to bathe in even for kids. It’s also floored with many rocks which is unfortunately not suitable for cliff diving.
  • The place is completely unspoilt. No signs of human intervention. There are no cottages nor benches where visiting tourists can stay. Better to bring picnic mats.
  • There was only one room where you can change your clothes. Toilet and bath is available back in the registration area.
  • There was only one garbage sack placed in the picnic area where all the trash are collated. Please have the decency to make use of it.
  • The local council managing the area does everything in keeping Asik-asik Falls and its surrounding clean. Please do your part to keep it that way.
  • Take time to read the Do’s and Don’ts pinned in the registration area. It will be useful in guiding you on being a good steward of nature.
  • Roads to Asik-Asik Falls from Upper Dado is under construction. Easier access to the falls may be available come the end of 2016 or in 2017.

HOW TO GO THERE

  • From Manila – Fly to Cotabato which is the nearest airport. From there ride a jeep going to the bus terminal then ride the bus going to Davao and alight in Libungan Public Market and Terminal. From there you can ride a double-tired jeep going to Barangay Upper Dado. Upon arriving in Brgy. Upper Dado, charter a motorcycle to Asik-Asik Falls. Alternatively, from Libungan Public Market and Terminal you can ride a trike going to the motorcycle terminal bound for Alamada and charter one to take you to Asik-Asik Falls.
  • From Davao – Ride a bus in Ecoland Bus Terminal or a van in G-Mall or SM Davao bound to Cotabato and alight in Libungan specifically the road leading to Alamada then charter a motorcycle going to Asik-Asik Falls.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

SAMPLE BUDGET (Excluding Airfare)

  • From DAVAO
    RT Fare Davao-Libungan – P520
    RT Fare Double-Tired Jeep – P170
    RT Fare Motorcyle (Habal-Habal) – P100
    Environmental Fee – P30
    Total – P820 (Best option for people travelling alone) or
    RT Fare Davao-Libungan – P520
    RT Fare Motorcycle (Habal-Habal) @ P600 good for 3 people – P200
    Environmental Fee – P30
    Total – P750 (Please note that 3 people in a motorcycle is only a possibility if you are of the normal size like you are not overweight so just do the math if only 2 of you can share the cost.)
  • From COTABATO
    RT Fare Cotabato-Libungan – P150
    RT Fare Double-Tired Jeep – P170
    RT Fare Motorcyle – P100
    Environmental Fee – P30
    Total – P450 (Best option for people travelling alone) or
    RT Fare Cot-Libungan – P150
    RT Fare (Habal-Habal) @ P600 good for 3 people – P200
    Environmental Fee – P30
    Total – P380 (Again 3 people in a motorcycle is only a possibility if you are of the normal size like you are not overweight)

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATOIMPORTANT!

  1. For those bringing their cars, there is a parking fee of P25. Please note that the roads to Asik Asik Falls is completely unpaved so if you don’t want your Vios, Innova or the like murdered, leave them at home and take your best passenger trucks!
  2. Considering the current peace and order situation in the area, last trip of buses and vans from Libungan going to Davao is at 4PM. If you wont be able to make it in time, these budget hostels are available for you to choose from.
  • Hotel Angelo – Located in AH26, Midsayap, Cotabato. Rates start at P600 for a room good for 2 people.
  • Hill Park Inn and Restaurant – Crossing Poblacion 8 Midsayap, Cotabato. Rates start at P1000.
  • Twin Cubs Hotel – Poblacion 6, Midsayap, Cotabato. Rates starts at P600.

***Please note that I’ve listed hostels located in Midsayap for convenience purpose since its Public Terminal has trips available for most of the destinations out of the area.

GETTING OUT

  • Cotabato – Ride a bus from Libungan bus Terminal or you can wait in the designated waiting area.
  • Davao – Ride a bus or a van from Libungan bus Terminal or the designated waiting area. If you can’t catch one, ride a tricycle going to Midsayap Public Terminal and ride a bus or van back to Davao. This route also applies to those bound for Kidapawan, Kabacan, Bansalan, Digos and other nearby cities and town situated along the National Hwy going to Davao.
  • General Santos (Gensan) – There is a van bound directly to Gensan from Midsayap Public Terminal.
  • Cagayan De Oro – Ride a bus or a van going to Kabacan Public Terminal. From there, ride a bus going to CDO.

ASIK-ASIK FALLS UPPER DADO ALAMADA NORTH COTABATO

There you go! I hope this budget travel guide to one of Mindanao’s gems helps you in discovering what this southern Philippine island has to offer.  For other information, feel free to shoot your queries on the comments box below or send me an email through this tab on the right. ————————————>

That’s it. Ciao!

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25 thoughts on “ASIK-ASIK FALLS: Journey To The Unspoiled Curtain Waterfall In North Cotabato

  • Pedz

    Hi, my girlfriend and I will be going here on the 25th of this month. We’ve been doing some inquiry and habal-habal rate was 1k daw if solo and 700-800/head if more than one. After reading your post, I think what they might be charging us is a rip-off. Do you have any contact info of the habal habal riders you’ve contracted with? We could use every penny we could save here. 🙂 thanks!

    • Keza M Post author

      Hi Pedz unfortunately I didn’t get their number since I doubted they would give other passengers the same rate as the one they gave us. I guess the only reason why they gave it to us for that amount is because my dad was there with us. And 700/head is still a rip off. The price on the blog was already adjusted for my readers sake since that was the original amount they asked us before they agreed to our terms. So sorry if I wasn’t that helpful. Will try to get you a contact number before your travel. Hope I can get one before then. 🙂

      • Pedz

        Hi Keza, no worries. The information here is still a great help since I now know the baseline to bargain with. Will be going there tomorrow. One more thing, are there any direct transportation (van, bus, or trucks) from Midsayap to Koronadal? Or at least Tacurong? We’ll be going down South to Lake Cebe right after enjoying the Aski-Asik Falls. Again, many thanks!

      • Keza M Post author

        Hi Pedz,

        As to what I can remember, there are vans going directly to Tacurong from Midsayap.

        Good Luck to your trip. 🙂