I’ve always tried to take this shot on an airplane. Yet it was always so difficult due to the angle of the plane plus the wing always being in the way. Thank goodness for a helicopter! Stay tuned for more stunning shots of the island of Saipan.
A few shots of the MV ASUKA II from a helicopter. Each time the ship leaves port, a helicopter is used to drop flowers down onto the passengers on the vessel’s departure. Talk about great customer service! The ride was exhilarating.
I was able to tour this baby while it was in port. The MV Asuka II is a cruise ship that was visiting Saipan on its final leg back to Japan.
The weather has been somewhat cloudy in the Mariana Islands. Its probably due to the passing storm, supposedly the strongest storm of 2014 (Typhoon Vongfont). Took a drive up to the highest point on the island, Mt. Tapochau. This drive MUST be done with a 4×4 capable vehicle. The past few months have been rainy, causing the roads to deteriorate.
This picture was taken looking south, looking towards Tinian. You can also see the island of Aguigan (Goat Island) in the distance. I took the picture around 12-1230PM. I was hoping for more blue and less clouds, but Mother Nature can be like that at times. This was a 30 second exposure done with a polarized filter + an ND filter.
I hiked down to Bird Island the other day and managed to take a few descent shots given that it was a very cloudy day. This was taken at around 1PM. I was hoping to get some really nice exposures with the sun being in the perfect spot at 1PM. However, it was a bit overcast. Although it wasn’t what I was expecting, the result was unique in the sense that the clouds in the background make the picture look more dramatic.
Bird Island is one of the Marine Protected Areas in the CNMI. It is located in the North Eastern side of Saipan. It is a quick 5 minute hike down to a beautiful beach. In the summer time, you could venture over onto the island itself and explore the tide pools for exotic marine life. If your lucky, you could also see baby black tip sharks patrolling the shoreline in search of a meal to eat.
Pre Cybuk Le’mai (Breadfruit) preparation on the island of Tinian. This type of tree was crucial for the existence of the Chamorro people because it was their “carbohydrate” to fuel and nourish their bodies every single day. There are different ways to prepare this specific stable crop. One way is to simply put it into a fire and let it cook on the outside. Once cooked, its almost like a baked potato but much more tasty. Another way to prepare Le’mai is by cutting off the exposed skin of the crop then chopping it into cubes (as shown in the picture). Boil it in water and coconut milk and then you’ll end up with cybuk. Stay tuned for the finished product!
I recently made a trip to the island of Tinian to hang out with some friends during the 2014 Tinian Fiesta. Immediately upon arriving at the dock (took my cousin’s boat which was an hour boat ride), we went straight up to the ranch to begin preparing for the evenings feast. This was the fire that was prepared to roast a small-medium sized pig. One of the “local” delicacies is roasted pig. Once the fire is prepared, it is spread around in a circle, surrounding the pig on a spick. The pig is then evenly roasted by turing the spic for several hours. Stay tuned for more pictures!
One of the indigenous creatures of the Northern Mariana Islands is the Coconut Crab (Birgus latro), known in the Chamorro language as the Ayuyu. These creatures reach up to 9 lbs and can literally husk a coconut with their massive claws.
Banzai Cliff, Saipan. It puts me in awe how a specific landscape can have many different appearances. This was taken at night. I was hoping for some star action to light up the horizon, but was refused by the mercy of the weather.
Laulau Bay, Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands. One of THE nicest places on Saipan, Laulau Bay is located on the South Eastern side of Saipan. Growing up, Laulau Bay was the place where my family would gather and hang out at the beach, bbq, and have fun in the sun. In my teenage years, this was the place where I learned how to spearfish. Now a days, it is a place where I go to relax and get away from “everything”. Sitting by the cliff side, one can hear the constant crashing of the waves upon the ancient coral reef. White noise, which changes the frequency of the mind to a channel that embraces peace, calm, and tranquility. Thoughts of “stress” vanish into the ocean mist phasing out, as the ocean tide recedes.