MOUNT Everest hero Romi Garduce will lead a 520 –kilometer fundraising bike tour in Palawan to help promote eco-tourism in the Philippines’ “Last Frontier.”
Padyak Palawan will take Garduce and a group of UP Mountaineers from the island’s southern tip to the northernmost town from October 10 to 23. The trip aims to showcase some of the country’s most impressive heritage sites, as well as highlight wildlife advocacy by taking us to different wildlife locations throughout the region.
"It's a multi-proinged approach- we want to promote Palawan pero hindi lang basta promote but gusto natin responsible and sustainable eco-tourism," during the launch at the Biker's Cafe at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The two-week journey will kick off from the town of Bataraza and culminate in the world famous tourist destination of El Nido. In between, the group will visit areas of interest such as the Talbon cave, said to be the site of some of the world’s oldest human bones, the Estrella Falls in Aborlan, Puerto Princesa, the Matanglaw and Umalad Falls in Roxas and the UNESCO site St. Paul’s Underground River in Sabang, Sta. Isabela in Taytay, a well-known spot for kayaking, diving and snorkeling.
The first Filipino to climb all Seven Summits (the highest peaks of the world’s seven continents), Garduce and four other members of his 18-strong party will ride locally-made bamboo bikes.
The event is meant not just to promote adventure tourism in Palawan, but also to spread awareness on wildlife conservation to protect endangered species, interact with indigenous communities, and appreciate the rare resources in our own country. Every stop in this tour will highlight a significant feature that will encourage followers to do their part and give back to Center for Conservation Innovation’s Palawan Programme: Oplan Tandikan.
Oplan Tandikan, the advocacy chosen by Garduce as the project’s beneficiary, is a biodiversity conservation project that is committed to increasing the area of land conservation management and building conservation capacity of high profile endemic species and their rapidly diminishing habitats.
This advocacy is also active in reducing the impact of climate change, wildlife trade and explores new programs where local community assists in the rehabilitation of damaged ecosystems in protected areas.
The 47-year old Garduce is known to be one of the top adventure icons in the Philippine and is partnered with the Center for Outdoor Recreation and Expedition (C.O.R.E.), the advocacy arm of Primer Group of Companies. C.O.R.E. supports outdoor athletes, scientists, artists and writers, and collaborates with NGOs, government agencies and private organizations to explore new boundaries, advocate chance, develop and promote new discoveries in the name of environmental, athletic and scientific pursuits.