Calbayog City Mayor Ronald Aquino

CALBAYOG CITY, Samar, Oct. 26 (PNA) The city government here is looking at reactivating its City Tourism Council in a bid to strengthen the link with private sector as parterns in local tourism development.

Mayor Ronald Aquino said that partnership with the private sector as member of the local tourism council is vital to achieve remarkable growth in tourist arrival.

Last year, the city has welcomed 93,826 tourists, nearly half than the 53,812 visitors in 2013.

This figure is still minimal, according to Aquino, but very encouraging for the city government. That is why they included tourism as one of local development priorities.

Dubbed as city of waterfalls, the city is the home to nine waterfalls spread throughout the city’s 880.7 square kilometer land area.

Most famous of which are Bangon and Tarangban Falls in Tinaplakan village, about 45 minutes travel from the city center up north near the boundary of Samar and Northern Samar.

Road leading to Bangon Falls are now being concreted, according to Aquino.

Aside from waterfalls, Calbayog City is also taking pride for its four major dive spots inspected and validated by the Department of Tourism. These are Isla Pawikan and Puy-aw in Binaliw village, Kinawan Reef in Tinambacan district and Daraga Islet in Malajog village.

“By the first quarter of 2016, we are looking at deploying reef rangers and snorkeling guides and construct tourist holding areas in nearby barangays,” Aquino told PNA.

The second phase for the development of Malajog Ridge is also on-going with the construction of a zip line that will start at the tip of the ridge and will end at Daraga islet with a distance of about 850 meters.

The Malajog Ridge View Zip-line and the eco-trail are components of the two-phase Malajog Tourism Development Project. The first phase is the eco-trail that spans to almost a kilometer, starting a few meters off the national highway in Malajog village. (PNA)