Thursday, August 20, 2015

Something Exotic

Written by guest blogger Scott Lindsay:

Guest Blogger and PADI instructor Scott Lindsay
Guest Blogger and PADI instructor Scott Lindsay

When I first arrived on Malapascua, I was probably the same as everyone else. Tired from the journey from Cebu city, and full of anticipation of what I would find on this small tropical island paradise. Like many who visit Malapascua, I came to the island for diving. This is probably the islands number one draw, but add to this the fact it has some beautiful beaches, awesome local residents and amazing food, what more could you ask from paradise?
There are many resorts large and small, and many restaurants offering all kinds of culinary fair. Prices range across the board, and I believe there is something for everyone. One resort in particular stands out from the crowd. That is Exotic Dive resort. Situated a little further away than the main bulk of the islands resorts and restaurants, it really is worth the walk (which is probably no more than 10 minutes from anywhere, as it isn’t a large island).

Thresher shark (Alopias pelagicus) at monad shoal, Malapascau.
Thresher shark (Alopias pelagicus) at monad shoal, Malapascau.
If you decide to stay in the Exotic resort, than you will have almost every need catered for. First they offer the islands original dive centre, and pioneers of the Thresher shark experience. Friendly, professional and incredibly eagle eyed dive guides will take you around many of the surrounding dive sites, pointing out the Thresher sharks, occasional other pelagic life, colourful nudibranchs, different sized frogfish, and mesmerizing flamboyant cuttlefish to name but a few.

Rooms vary in size, price and luxury, and all are well maintained and looked after by the friendly housekeeping staff.  The resort also boasts one of the best restaurants on the island. It takes the whole of about a minute to walk from the ocean to a seat, so after a hard days relaxation on the beach, or after a day of diving, you don’t have far to travel to satisfy the appetite you have worked up.
Exotics beac front restaurant
Exotics beachfront restaurant 
Firstly, let’s start with the staff. All are super friendly, smiling and joking, and always happy to help you. Even at its busiest times (there is a reason it can get busy) they are able to help you with anything you need. Next, let’s look at the menu. Well if choice is something you want, then there is no lack of it here. An Asian/ European fusion with of course some mouth watering Local Filipino dishes and surprising Dutch snacks, with many other favourites thrown in, the only word I can find to describe it is epic. Epically large in choice, epically large in variety, and portion size is never an issue (bring an appetite).  They offer 267 Dishes, which can be easily navigated through the Exotic resort app (currently available for android and soon available in the App store). 

Exotics android app
Exotics app
And if you are after something to wash down these amazing dishes, then happy hour is between 5pm and 7pm (they aren’t shy with the measures) for cocktails, or shakes and juices are available all day. There is also draft beer and quality coffee from the coffee shop style real coffee machine. If you have a sweet tooth, then one of the many deserts will entice you (if you have left room for one). The cheesecake is a particular favorite of mine. Maybe not the best in the world, but considering the location, it really does impress and satisfy.
Breakfast varies from a full buffet at busy times, to just a cup of good coffee for those in a rush (I am not sure where you would be rushing to though). As a diving day can start early here, as with many dive centres (around 4.30am), there is nothing quite like being able to return to a hearty breakfast to fuel you for the rest of the day.
So all in all, Exotic dive resort ticks many boxes. If you dont believe me, come and find out for yourself.

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