Monday, March 7, 2016

Spots to visit in Isla de Gigantes - Island of Giants

Day 3: February 13
Island of giants or known as Islas De Gigantes is the one of the laid back islands I set my foot in. I discovered this place because of the famous jaw dropping view of Cabugao Island.

After sleeping early last night, when I said early, I meant after watching the last episode of “Pangako Sayo” okay, I admit I am a certified Amorado (Amor Powers and Eduardo Buenavista tandem hehe), going back to my story, we woke up early the next day for us to maximize our time plus my family still need to prepare for our tour food. You know what’s fun when travelling with family? You get to eat what you want and you don’t deprive yourself because they tend to bring as much food as they can. We were actually on a “seafood” diet the whole time! Lol
6:30 AM arrived at Estancia port. We had to pay PHP 5000 rent for the boat (overnight/PHP 4000 day tour) plus PHP 5 terminal fee. Their boat rate is across the board so if you will be traveling on a group it’s better to rent a boat because there is only one ferry trip from Estancia port to Gigantes Norte Island that leaves at 2PM. Not sure though how you're going to get around to the rest of the islands if you opted to ride the commuter pumpboat (PHP 80/pax) might as well inquire to your chosen accommodation if they offer boat tour.
6:50 AM Depart from Estancia port. It was a long haul boat ride and it’s already 8:46 AM when we arrived at the famous Cabaugao Island.
Cabugao Gamay Island where we had our drooling breakfast 
Told yah, we are on a SEA-FOOD diet
Afterwards we hiked up its famous photogenic hilltop.

Selfeet @ Cabugao :)
Entrance Fee: PHP 30/pax

10:00 AM Left Cabugao and head to Bantigue Island which is just 10mins away.
The island is boasting its long sandbar
and crystal clear water where you could go swimming like there is no tomorrow.

Ofcourse, I wouldn't miss getting a dramatic shot on this island! lol
Selfeet @ Bantigue :)
Entrance Fee: Donation only

10:35 AM off to Antonia Island where we ate our lunch. 

While the adults are busy preparing lunch, we used our time snorkeling and feed our eyes with big fishes on a protected area on the island. 

After lunch we had our power nap under the coconut tree since we are waiting for the high tide for us to appreciate more our next destination.
Selfeet @ Antonia
Entrance Fee: PHP 40/pax
1:00 PM Head to our next destination, Tanke salt water lagoon. There were already lots of boat parked on the area when we arrived.

You have to cross one boat to another for you to be able to reach the dock. It's indeed parking more fun in the Philippines! lol

Entrance Fee: PHP 20/pax

We didn't had a chance to visit Pawikan Cave but if you will be visiting Isla de Gigantes make sure to add this to your list.
2:20 PM Arrived at Isla de Gigantes Norte, checked-in at Rosewood's place. Rest for a moment then went to our island tour.
By the way their electricity schedule is 3PM – 11PM only. I would suggest to bring power back in case you ran out of juice.

Land tour costs PHP 200 – Single motorcycle that will take you around the island and the only mode of transportation since their roads is too narrow, it can only accommodate single motorcycles. This island is famous because of its Bakwitan cave which saved families when the Island was hit by super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) and lighthouse.

4:15 PM Start of tour
4:19 PM Arrived at Bakwitan Cave.

 The cave isn't a walk in the park, it will surely test your knees, be ready. Unless you are fit. Unlike me, I love unhealthy foods that's probably the reason why I get tired easily.

The Cave is huge because there were still unexplored parts inside. During our tour we were able to see stalagmites, stalactites and baby versions of them. Just keep out and not touch, it will kill the rocks.

Entrance Fee: Donation only
4:55 PM Left cave and head to their lighthouse.
5:10 PM Lighthouse

Selfeet @ Lighthouse

Entrance Fee: Donation only
This is like an island of scallops; I’ve seen scallop shells everywhere. 
Selfeet @ Gigantes Norte

Kid’s smiles are awesome and highly contagious, they always greet you and you have no choice but to greet back because they will always find a way to melt your heart. 
I still remember when we are about to leave, there's these 2 kids trying to stop the motorbike to leave lol
5:50 PM End of tour.
Day 4: February 14
Next day, we woke up early to prepare to go back to the mainland. Since its low tide we had to go to the island’s main port. We rode another single motorcycle that costs us PHP 20 per person.

At the 1 hour mark of our boat travel, we began to feel the wrath of the ocean (insert scary music here), no.. that’s too scary. It was just a bumpy ride.
10:00 AM Van off to Ilo-Ilo city.

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