Summer is past its full-swing (considering July as a typical rainy month here in the tropical Philippine archipelago) and it’s nearing weekend again. We’ve been planning for a barkada escape in a touristy destination. Everything was set only to end up having conflict with the expense plus the delayed financial resource. Can you relate? Yeah, it’s kinda frustrating but we took it positively. With the pricey quote for a Bohol trip, we headed to Olango Island instead.
What happened next?
In days of planning, we’ve decided to spend one weekend at San Vicente Marine Sanctuary in Olango Island. What’s the perk of having this alternative trip? We had an exclusive night stay at the sanctuary, provided with almost everything at a lesser expense.
Camping at the sanctuary with mangroves and trees around is like a countryside stay. It’s actually what I imagined. We only had flashlights and lanterns to light us up all night as the area do not have a power supply. A fly sheet was laid on the sand for us to sit and lie down while having socials and star and moon gazing.
Unfortunately, some of us didn’t have enough sleep for some creepy reasons. We even lost our way while searching for a sari-sari store to buy some drinks. We found our way back to the sanctuary after an hour anyway.
Everyone woke up early to prepare breakfast and lunch. We’re lucky to have been permitted to use their kitchen and kitchen wares, and other facilities. We all agreed to hop two islands (Cauhagan and Sulpa) thereafter. The island hopping activity culminated at the snorkeling, fish feeding and diving area of the sanctuary. We we’re caught lunch time there and just ate and spend longer time before heading back to the sanctuary.
The sun’s excruciating heat and everyone’s exhaustion pushed us to get back, wash-up and be home-bound.
Before a tricycle ride to Sta. Rosa Wharf, we drop by the signature scenery of the island for photo ops with the street lined vibrant neem trees as our background. And we call it a weekend, quick yet well-spent.
Spending quality time with like-minded (at some point) friends at a short time is nothing more than a week-long vacation with their counterpart. Where are we heading next is yet to determine as of the moment. I’ll keep posted…
Other Activities to Try in the Island:
- Mangrove planting
- Water Inflatables and other aqua sports
- Boardwalk viewing
- Floating restaurant
- Wandering throughout the island and have engage with the locals
4pm-5pm – Meetup at Hilton Wharf (beside Movenpick Hotel Mactan Island)
5pm-5:30pm – Punta Engaño to Olango Island by boat
5:30pm-5:45pm – Sta. Rosa Wharf to San Vicente Marine Sanctuary
7pm – Dinner
8pm – Socials
12 midnight – Lights off
5am – Wake-up Call
7am – Breakfast
8am-12 noon – Island Hopping (lunch)
1pm – Getting ready to go home
2pm – Heading Home
3pm – 3:30pm – Olango to Hilton Wharf
5pm – Home sweet home
- Boat Fare (back and forth) – 30
- Hilton Wharf (Punta Engaño) Terminal Fee – 15
- Sta. Rosa Wharf (Olango) Terminal Fee – 5
- Habal2x/Motorcycle Ride to Campsite – 20
- Entrance Fee (none when you’re camping) – 25
- Camp fee (per head) – 200
- Habal2x back to Olango Port – 20
- Island Hopping – 1300 for 2 islands, 1600 for 3 islands per boat – 145 (1300/9)
- Snorkeling gear (in case you don’t have one) – 100
- Use of dirty kitchen (water, charcoal, LPG) – 170 – 19 (170/9)
- Shared Food – 241
Total = roughly 820
Things to Bring:
- eating utensils (plate, spoon, fork, glass)
- camping gear (tent, sleeping bag, flashlight, cookset, burner)
- gadgets (phone, power bank, camera, googles, snorkelling gear, etc.)
- sunscreen/sun protection (sunblock, sunglasses, umbrella/hat, etc.)
- swimming essentials (swimsuit, rash guard, towel,etc.)
- rice (2 cups each) and drinking water
- personal toiletries (soap, shampoo/conditioner, tissue, alcohol, etc.)
- LNT (leave no trace)
- respect each other’s time and effort (be on time)
- never explore alone
- be a responsible traveller
For more information on a night stay or any service from San Vicente Marine Sanctuary in Olango Island, just contact it’s manager at 09214681772.
Watch our video here by Asa Ni Quen?: