Camarines Sur is a destination known to get your adrenaline pumping. Name it and Bicol’s largest province has it, from spelunking and trekking to diving and surfing.
One of the most popular destinations for those looking for some thrill is Camarines Sur Watersports Complex (CWC), a six-hectare cable park within the Provincial Capitol Complex in Pili.
A water sports complex for pros and newbies
John Philip Canuto, head of cable park operations, says that since the CWC opened in 2006, it has become one of the top wake parks in the world.
It continues to attract both local and foreign water sports enthusiasts to its state-of-the-art facilities. The complex sees an uptick in international visitors, particularly Europeans, from October to February each year.
Canuto, who is also the CWC’s systems maintenance officer, shares that the wake park has two man-made lakes where various water sports can be practiced.
With a six-point cable system, it can accommodate wakeboarders, wakeskaters, kneeboarders, and waterskiers of different levels from newbies to pros.
“There is a separate lake for beginners where it’s easier for them to engage in watersports,” he explains.
Called a winch park-beginner, the difference from the usual cable system is its smaller size, slower cable speed, and constant guidance from instructors and operators.
Huge spotlights allow guests to use the facilities even at night.
“Learning wakeboarding,” says the watersports instructor of 12 years, “depends largely on the learner.” Most can already stand up on their own after an hour’s worth of instruction.
Canuto first got into wakeboarding when he was 18 as an employee of CWC. His work exposed him to different water sports and he eventually got hooked.
These days, they get learners from as young as six to as old as 61.
“Bend your knees, keep your toes up, put your hands in front of you,” he advises. “As soon as the cable pulls you up slowly, don’t resist, just let it lead you. Keep your balance in the center of the board.”
“Those who want to get into water sports may want to have a circle of friends who are also interested. Doing it together can boost your eagerness (to learn).”
CWC has eight cable system operators who double as instructors, two of whom are assigned to beginners. The wake park also has lifeguards on standby.
A sports enthusiast’s paradise
Wakeboarding is the sport that thrust CWC to the limelight. Every year, the complex plays host to local and international events that draw legions of enthusiasts all over the world.
But it also has facilities for other watersports like kneeboarding, waterskiing, wakeskating, kayaking, and windsurfing.
It has a skate park, swimming pool, an activity center for kids with giant water slides, a game room that has a pool and air hockey tables, basketball and volleyball courts, and bike trails.
In November 2021, Pili Grove Golf Club, a nine-hole golf course, was opened within the CWC. The owners plan to add a zipline and more water activities in the coming months.
“It’s worth paying CWC a visit because of what we could offer, not only as a wake park, but as a province. CamSur has so many spots for tourism,” Canuto adds. “Plus, the locals are very hospitable.”
Wakeboarding rates are at Php180/1 hour, Php300 for two hours, Php 585 for four hours, and Php975 for one day (8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.).
Night rates are at Php325/hour and Php975 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. The whole day + night rate is at Php1,690 (8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.).
Equipment rental, which includes a life vest and a helmet, is at Php40/hour, Php90/half day, and Php140/day. A Php500 deposit is required.
For more information, you may visit CWC’s official website.
Where to Eat
CWC has a clubhouse restaurant and a bar that serves local, Asian, and Western cuisine. A must try is their Laing pizza (Php250) which is best paired with ice-cold soda or beer.
In the afternoon, a street food vendor is allowed inside the compound, selling hawker favorites on sticks such as fishball, squidball, kikiam, and kwek-kwek. A stick costs anywhere between Php10 to Php20.
Bringing of food and drinks bought outside the complex is strictly prohibited.
Where to Stay
CWC houses Villa del Rey, a complex of accommodations such as villas, cabanas, dwell homes, and cabins.
Rates are at Php7,500 for a Private Villa, Php3,800 for a New Cabana, Php3500 for a Dwell Home, Php2,750 for a Cabana, Php3,595 for a medium-sized Wood Cabin and Php2,725 for a small one.
Check in is at 2:00 pm while check out is at 12:00 noon. Rates are exclusive of meals and CWC amenities. Cooking is not allowed.
Email [email protected] or contact (054) 477-3344/(054) 477-3349/0999-889-3697/0917-895-4156 for reservations.
There are two ways you can get from Manila to Camarines Sur. Local airlines travel daily to Naga Airport from Manila. Flight time takes about 45 minutes.
If you prefer traveling by bus, there are several bus companies in Cubao and Pasay that have regular daily trips to the province. Fares and travel times depend on the bus line of your choice.
Outsource the Planning
For a seamless trip, you may leave the planning to DOT’s accredited tour operators in Bicol. Click on this link for a comprehensive list of agencies.
Explore Camarines Sur responsibly by making sure that you comply with the province’s health and safety protocols, such as wearing face masks and practicing social distancing.
For the latest travel information about Camarines Sur, you may visit their official website or Facebook page. You may also review updated safety protocols and requirements on Philippine destinations at www.philippines.travel/safetrip or download the Travel Philippines app at app.philippines.travel.