Since the Mindanao Saga Flying Club (MSFC) in Mati City, Davao Oriental opened its doors to the public and has been taking on passengers on an ultralight plane trial introductory flight (TIF) in 2014, it has now taken the top spot on must-do’s in Mati City.
People from all over the country—and even abroad—have been flocking to Mati City to experience flying.
For just PhP2700 for 15 minutes, you fly on an open ultralight plane with an open cockpit with you sitting side by side with your pilot. You fly with the wind in your hair and your eyes full of the ever changing hues of the blue sea of Dahican Beach and Pujada Bay, green plantations of mango and coconut trees, fly over the cityscape, and experience the thrill of being airborne.
Everything should be strapped—your camera, your cellphone, and, obviously, you. Anything that can get detached might get into the rotors and cause your plane to malfunction. Bring out your cell phone at your own risk of losing it to the blue sea or the green trees!
You will not be allowed to fly if you do not wear their regulatory helmet.
If you are scared of the open cockpit, there’s the fox bat for PhP3200/15 minutes. My first flight with the MSFC was in a fox bat.
If you prove to be calm and relaxed, your pilot might just let you take control of the stick and pilot the plane for a few minutes. This is what I was able to do and it is one tick off of my bucket list.
I was in control for over 7 minutes and had a death grip on the stick. My pilot, Iñaki Sievert, who also manages the club, said I had to relax my grip and just enjoy the ride. True enough, when you let go and just let be, you soar literally and figuratively.
Best time to fly is from 530am to 830am.
You can get formal pilot studies and training from the MSFC as it gears to produce quality pilots with their new planes for commercial flights, new teaching facilities and simulator, and strict standards for safety and security. Watch out for this soon.
For the mean time, enjoy scaling new heights as you fly on ultralight wings. As this saying from Leonardo da Vinci goes, "For once you have tasted flight, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return."
How to get there:
Mati City is a 3-hour road trip from Davao City. Take the bus from the Davao Overland Terminal in Ecoland to Mati City. Vans plying the Mati route also have their terminals at Gaisano Mall, Abreeza, NCCC, and SM Ecoland.
Single motorcycles or habal-habals can be rented at the Mati City proper to get to the Mindanao Saga Flying Club (MSFC) air strip in Dahican. Contact MSFC at 0917-307-0670. PAL and other major airlines fly daily to Davao City from Manila and Cebu.
Where else have you dreamt of flying to? Share it over on www.ChoosePhilippines.com!