BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Following the success of the Tomongtong mangrove eco-trail tourist attraction, another tourist destination is soon to open in the coastal barangay of Madalag in EB Magalona, Negros Occidental.
This time, it will feature a Bangkok-inspired floating market and restaurant, with “Instagramable” scenes.
The construction of the floating market and restaurant is underway in Madalag, where tourists may enjoy eating “talaba (oysters)” and fresh seafoods, including the known “blue crabs”, while in a pump boat and enjoying the scenery during high tide.
Madalag, another coastal barangay of EB Magalona, is home to about 20 hectares of mangroves and known for its oysters that are being sold as far as Cebu.
A bamboo trail leading to the mangrove area, from a seafood restaurant, will also be constructed and planned to be linked to the newly-built bridge connecting the barangay proper to an islet, that is surrounded by mangroves as well.
SQUATTER HOUSES AS MURALS
Aside from this innovative concept, Municipal Environment and Natural Resources officer, Jojo Vargas, said yesterday that they will also transform the squatter area houses into an “Instagramable” background by repairing and improving the houses and painting them in pastel colors to turn them into colorful murals.
For those who opt to eat sumptuous seafoods, Vargas said there is a restaurant along the seashore to cater to them.
If tourists want to experience harvesting and cooking oysters, they may do so, he added.
Vargas said they will also introduce an exotic seafood, locally known as ‘salpo (peanut worm)” that is found only in Madalag.
FLOATING RESTO, TOO
A floating restaurant is also being eyed along the Madalag River to promote the mud-crab fattening project, that is expected to compliment the Bangkok-inspired floating market and restaurant.
Mayor Marvin Malacon, accompanied by councilors, who are into biking, inspected the progress of the construction yesterday.
He said that transforming Madalag into a tourist destination would mean more livelihood opportunities and income for its residents, especially the fisherfolk.
The project will be managed by a women’s organization, in tandem with the municipal government of EB Magalona, similar to the management of the Tomontong Eco-Trail, Malacon added. He said the floating market and restaurant are expected to open in July this year.*