The Philippines is the second largest archipelago in the world, making it a natural playing field for water sports and adventure tourism. It’s no wonder that Singaporean adventurer and Guinness World Record Holder Khoo Swee Chow chose the Philippines as the place to attempt another world record on his list. But kayaking all over the Philippines is more than just a new world record for Swee Chiow; it’s also a way to celebrate 40 years of Filipino-Singaporean diplomatic relations. The expedition has been aptly named The Friendship Kayak because of the Filipino people’s hospitality and support for the journey; without it, this expedition would not be made possible.
Aside from Khoo Swee Chiow, the Philippine Kayak Expedition is also made up of two fine Filipino kayakers, Erwin â€œBuzzyâ€ Budlong of Cebu City and Arnel Gabutero of Davao City. The expedition team will attempt to kayak the entire length of the Philippines in the span of three months. It’s been almost two months since they first started out, and it looks like the team is making pretty good time. According to Swee Chiow, they couldn’t have made it this far without hospitality of the Filipino people. During instances where they couldn’t contact the support boat, villagers would help them find a place to spend the night. Local government units were also very generous in providing the team with supplies, food, accommodations, land transportation, security and endless assistance.
Even local and international brands like Primer Group of Companies, ROX, Habagat, 100 Plus, Kayakasia Paddle Sports, Water Cross, Columbia, Tahe Marine, Perspectiv Technologies, Shangri-Laâ€™s Boracay Resort & Spa, Shangri-Laâ€™s Mactan Resort & Spa, Traders Hotel, Changi Sports Medicine Centre, Energizer, Temasek Polytechnic, Oakley, Blood Red, The Magic Touch, Banana Boat, Adventure 21 Outdoor & Travel Outfitters, Shuqun Primary and Bukit Panjang Government High School are seeing the potential of kayaking for the country as they take part as sponsors in this pioneering expedition.
The Friendship Kayak Expedition started on August 31 and is estimated to reach its destination by the end of November. Hopefully, the successful end of this expedition will cement the Philippines as a premiere kayaking destination. I didn’t even know it was possible to kayak all over the country!