Lake Buhi has an area of 18 square kilometers and has an average depth of 8 meters. The lake lies in the valley formed by two ancient volcanoes, Mt. Asog and Mt. Malinao. It was created in 1641, when an earthquake caused a side of Mt. Asog to collapse. The resulting landslide created a natural dam that blocked the flow of nearby streams. Another theory suggests that it was created by the eruption of Mt. Asog, which is now dormant.
Baked Sinarapan "Burirawan" eel
The lake is famous since it is one of the few bodies of water that contains the sinarapan which is the world's smallest commercially-harvested fish. The fish measures about three to four millimeters long and one spoonful would hold a thousand on them.
Aside from the sinarapan, Lake Buhi is also home for other marine organisms such as the Irin-irin, Dalag, Puyo, Kotnag, Burirawan, and native catfish. Other fishes are introduced to boost the fishery industry such as the Nile Tilapia, Mozambique Tilapia, Common Carp, and Bangkok Hito.
The forest surrounding the lake is the home of at least 25 bird species. The five endemic species are the Philippine Pygmy Woodpecker, Philippine Hanging Parrot, Black-naped Monarch, Elegant Tit, and the White-eared Brown Dove. Other fauna found in the forest are flying lizards (Draco sp.), skinks, monitor lizards (Varanus marmoratus), civet cats, bats, and the Philippine Cynomolgus Monkey (Macaca fasicularis).
The Benefits of the Lake
Today, the lake is the main source of water supply for the National Power Corporation Hydro Electric Plant. The power plant, which was founded in 1952, generates an average of 2.8 megawatts. It is also used by the National Irrigation Administration to irrigate at least 100 square kilometers of the Riconada towns located downstream and Iriga City.
At the eastern side of Mt. Iriga, picturesque Lake Buhi is about 105 meters above sea level, surrounded on all sides by hills more than 300 meters high. The lake is located in the town of Buhi, Camarines Sur.
How to Get There
The province of Camarines Sur can be reached by plane within a flying time of 45 minutes. Flights are serviced by the Air Philippines (Pal Express), Zest Air, and Cebu Pacific from Manila to Naga City Airport (the capital of the province). Riding a plane is the quickest way to go to the province.
--- From Naga City, take a bus, van, or jeepney going to the city of Iriga.
Air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned buses like PhilTranco, Isarog Bus Co., and Peñafrancia Bus Lines ply daily through the Quirino Highway from Manila to Naga or directly going to Iriga City.
--- From Iriga City, take a jeep going to Buhi.
Buses, vans, and jeepneys are mostly used in traveling outside the City of Naga and going to other towns of Camarines Sur. Taxis are available as well, but with double charge or price depending on your negotiation with the driver.
In other municipalities, jeepneys, tricycles, and trisikad (manpowered tricycles) are the main transportation.
Where to Stay
• Parkview Hotel - San Roque, Iriga City - Camarines Sur, Bicol
• Asog County Hotel - Highway 1 San Isidro , Iriga City - Camarines Sur, Bicol
• Bersabaren Garden Resort - E. Corporal Street, San Isidro, Iriga City - Camarines Sur, Bicol