Inspiring Space – Enigmata Treehouse

Artikel auf Deutsch

“Listening to your poems
rests a smile on my face.”
(Rosalie Zerrudo, Camiguin Artist)

Setting foot in Rosalie’s playground for artistic ventures also rests a smile on my face and makes me feel calm and happy immediately: Covered in the peaceful aura of wood, I am moving in my own time and space, discovering the colorful masterpieces by Camiguin artists at Enigmata Treehouse.

The breakup of understandings for the construction of a room has a liberating sense to it, as has the lifestyle of Enigmata’s residents: One morning I am making myself comfortable with one of the many collected books in the back area of what seems to be reception, working space and breakfast room with showers at the same time, when I hear subtle sounds of a guitar behind the bookshelf. Vincent just got up and is starting the day by playing some of his self taught melodies.

Vincent playing Guitar at Enigmata Treehouse.

While I am trying to find out more about this magically nice place, I discover the traces of the Camiguin artist Rosalie Zerrudo. As the founder of Enigmata Treehouse, she set the first stone of what has become a mecca for backpackers and passionate eco-tourists.

“As a travel organizer, I have learned two important aspects that make travel more meaningful: meeting people and experiencing cultural diversity. Mindanao is a close encounter to having a multi-interactive and visually appetizing community where people and the living culture are distinctly diverse form those in the other groups of islands in the Philippines. Mindanao is the cultural capital of diverse indigenous and settlers communities with close connection to South East Asia and multi- racial roots. “

– Rosalie Zerrudo
(Dagmay, Literary Journal of the Davao Writers Guild, 2009)

Other than that, the Treehouse is also the destination for hundreds of children who come to Camiguin every year for Enigmata’s “Eco Art Challenge Summer Camp” – the artistic potential of the whole family is passed on to the future generations not only of the charming island itself, but also areas out of the Philippines: The kids are mostly coming from South Korea.

On my walk through the garden, which is decorated with paintings by the kids, I find what was given to Rosalie as a present from her good friend Kublai Millan in 2003, a labyrinth with the shape of a hand:

“This labyrinth walk is very sacred to me. It is probably the only labyrinth in Mindanao. It is a constant reminder that we should keep going back to our center.” – – Rosalie Zerrudo
(Cebu Smile, 2008)

As the sun sets, a day at Enigmata ends with an interplay of musical creativity by the sons and daughters of the treehouse. Vincent, who has also decorated Enigmata with his own artistic masterpieces, is very modest: “I don’t play that good.” Listening to his sounds on the guitar, accompanied by his friends on drums and flutes makes me feel to be just where I want to be right now. I feel like having reached the center of the labyrinth. I feel like I am home.

“Life has shown me
great signs of extra ordinary magnitude
my tasks have taken shape
in the life of the community
i move on closing the circle
that i left behind
with a happy tear
that force has again
carried me closer
to the great manifestation of life
a masterpiece
for i know in the end,
i have nothing
but a life story
that i can leave behind …”
(Rosalie Zerrudo)


Thanks to Vincent Roselio and all hosts of Enigmata for making our stay so special!

Enigmata Treehouse, Maubog, Balbagon, Mambajao, Camiguin Island


  1. you certainly know how to travel… I was surprise to find my name on this page… though we have not met in person, i guess we shared the same experience in meeting the same people and sharing the same spaces in your travel… Philippines is one country that has given me the most complete workshop and all textures of life… one lifetime is not enough to know every island… enjoy your travels… Rosalie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Rosalie,

      Thanks a lot for your message! I had a really amazing time in the Philippines, was allowed to see so many beautiful places and meet so many great people. Continue your great work, maybe if I come back one day we can meet in person 🙂
      Greetings to the Philippines from Austria!


    2. Dear Kerstin,

      travellers like you, make us feel we have realized our purpose. by the end of the day what makes like worth living, is how one shared the moment and inspired each other. i will add your blog link to my newly-revived poetry blog 🙂 i am back to school in NYC and back in the island the connections are crazy slow so i just let go and never touch the blogs again only to find out after four years, that people wrote to me… keep warm, Europe has been extremely cold… 🙂 Rosalie

      Liked by 1 person

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