Play and Fly in Paradise! First International Paragliding Accuracy Championship in Sarangani

Play and Fly in Paradise!

Tourism stakeholders from the private and public sector in Region-12 are joining forces for the gathering of local and international paragliding pilots starting today for the first International Paragliding Accuracy Championship (IPAC) in the country.

The event headed by the Department of Tourism - Region 12 (DOT-12), the Airsports Adventure Philippines (AAP) and Sarangani Paragliding Club (SPC), will showcase the new adventure destination and draw interest not just on the unique sport but also of other tourism destinations in Sarangani and the region, the DOT-12's dynamic chief Nelly Nita Dillera, said.

The pilots are set to fly around the Sarangani Province’s vast plain lands and scenic rolling hills as they hover around the picture-perfect seascape of Sarangani Bay. 

Ian Mar T. Tan, the president of SPC, said the flying competition set today until the 24th of August will see flying 45 international pilots from 12 countries. The contest will test the accuracy of pilots in maneuvering the paraglides. Winning pilots may receive as much as 350,000 pesos for the grand price aside from the trophies and bragging rights.

Ms. Dillera said the event is a way to tell the world of the gems of Sarangani and the region and let locals benefit from tourism. If foreign tourists come they will stay longer hence our tourism related establishments will gain from it too, she said.

DOT-12 ensured participation of tour operators, transport sector, food and accommodation facilities, destination operators, SMES and souvenir producers. Every activity, even international events like this, should benefit everybody, she said.

Paragliding is a recreational and competitive adventure sport that allows pilots to sit in a harness suspended below a fabric wing that looks like a parachute and is interconnected with cables and baffled cells.

Paraglides don’t have engines but it can stay in the air for hours and fly and cover many hundreds of kilometres from flying base and thousands of meters from the ground by just relying on available wind.

With favorable weather condition, the Safii Ranch fly-site in Barangay Seguil, Maasim runs the longest flying season in the country, with up to 300 days suitable for paragliding. The expanse of Sarangani bay is the waiting bonus for flyers with daring spirits.

Sarangani has more than just paragliding site and they should know that as well. Ms. Dillera said the contest will also feature other side events such as eco-adventure sports like trail run competition and downhill mountain bike in the hills of Seguil village. 

Ms. Earth 2013 beauties are in town to visit Region-12's best kept secrets and to join the coastal clean-up and mangrove growing. Aside from Sarangani bay and its pristine beaches the beauties will also visit the famous Munato cave and see the munato jars of this province, take a dip in the white sand beaches at the southernmost part of Mindanao or experience water tubing in Maitum.

Fly and Play in paradise are among the clusters of activities and tourism destinations in Region-12 also known as SOCCSKSARGEN (South Cotabato, Cotabato City, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani and General Santos) now branded as “The 12th Paradise”. []

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