Saturday, May 15, 2010

Sunken Cemetery

According to local historians, Mount Vulcan in Camiguin Island, Philippines had four historic eruptions. The first one was in 1827 but records of this eruption were nil. The second one was in 1862 when thick ashes from the crater flowed and overtook people who were fleeing towards the sea, resulting in 326 fatalities.

The third one started in 1871. Previous experience had taught some of the Camiguin people of the dangerous whims of Mount Vulcan.

Thus, when earthquakes were felt, they fled as far away as possible from the volcano, but some stayed behind. There were spasmodic eruptions and the people who fled decided to stay away until the time when the volcano finally subsided in 1875. But when they returned, they have lost their land and their friends.

The whole capital of Camiguin, with its cemetery, sunk under the sea. In the following years, the sunken land and the gravestones can still be seen when the tide is low. But in 1948 until 1953, Mount Vulcan erupted again, sinking the whole area deeper, to around twenty feet.

In 1982, a large cross was built on the solidified lava to mark the site that became the graves of the ancestors of the Camiguin people. It has become a sunken cemetery.

Now, it is one of the world's most unique diving sites. When you hire a public transportation to take you around Camiguin, this is one of their stops. You can either go to the cross area by boat (which would mean additional payment) or you can just have your photos taken on the balcony shore with the cross in the background.

It was raining when we went there that time but after going to the other hotspots, the weather was alright when we passed by again so I was able to get a good photo of it.

1 comment :

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