We started the getaway last year when a group in our office planned to visit Mararison Island in Antique. This year, we planned early as we already knew of the long weekends for the year. Labor Day (May 1) falls on a Monday thus we will have three days to enjoy with the group. It was decided that we will visit Bantayan Island. Just like last year, we let the kids ( the younger generation in the Office) do the planning.
We left the Office at around 4:30H on 29 May 2017 (our plan was at 4:00) so we can catch the first trip to Bantayan island. The management of vessel plying Cadiz-Bantayan route doe not accept reservation, thus we have to be there early though the published schedule is at 9:00H. Our trip was again a bit delayed due to a Fun Run out side the city. it was still dark and a bit dangerous as people manning the area of the fun run are ill equipped. Most do not have reflectorized vest thus motorists have to be very careful to avoid accidents.
We arrived in Cadiz port at around 5:30H and was greeting by cold pleasant breeze.
There were already a lot of passengers and we immediately bought our tickets for our group of 15. We brought sandwiches for our breakfast (spam and egg sandwiches). The maximum number of passengers were rapidly filled as we boarded the vessel (referred to as Batil..a big pumpboat with a capacity of 162 Passengers) at around 7:00H.
We left Cadiz port at around 7:30H and reached Bantayan Island at around 10:00. The trip was enjoyable as we were allowed to go up the boat to take lots and lots of pictures.
Took several trisikads (P10/passenger) up to the jeepney terminal for Sta. Fe. There we got a Multicab to ake us direct to our Pension house in Sta Fe (fare is P25/passenger). Bantayan Island is similar to Gumaras Island with rocky terrain but do not have that much vegetation. There are a lot of barren areas..maybe remnants of the effect of Typhoon Yolanda. We were booked at Adelaida Pension…check in is at 12:00 and we arrived around 11:00H. So we had our lunch as we brought cooked food. The owner of the pension House allowed guests to use the dining area and even allowed us to use their kitchen to cook our meals free of charge! After check-in, we agreed to meet at 16:00H to explore the beach. I booked a room good for three at P1,400. Its a good deal as the room is spacious, very good airconditioning with hot and cold water and most of all very good WIFI.
The beach is around 10 minutes walk from Adelaida’s, passing by seaside community. It was low tide and we saw people just brought in their nets with their catch. The fishers were small but since these were very fresh we bought a kilogram each of latab and asous to add our dinner and breakfast.
The beach is very wide but not even. The sand is off white..similar to Guimaras white sand. We took a dip in the sea (did not really swim) as there are lots of stones, seagrass and maybe sea urchins. We just stayed in one place as we are not sure of the beach and enjoyed dipping until it was already dark. Went back to Adelaidas to cook our dinner and rested early.
We decided to go to Ogtong Cave and Resort and maybe go to another resort the following day. Some went out early to again explore the beach while most of us stayed to cook our breakfast the lunch.
We really enjoyed the beach here and we decided to stay rather than transfer to another resort. There is a cave with brackishwater pool but as I am not fond of caves…I did not venture inside.
Enjoyed our simple lunch…sinabawan nga latab, paksiw na asuos, adobong abbaoy and corned beef, scrambled eggs (supposed to be for breakfast but we ate hot pandesal with peanut butter and coffee).
Stayed in this resort until 2:30pm then went back to Adelaidas to rest and prepare for our early morning trip back to Cadiz City.
After a short nap, I asked around where the Catholic Church is. I was late for the mass as there was no trisikad available to I walked up to the town center.
Dropped by Bantayan Market to buy some their famous dried fish but was disappointed as it is expensive and quality are not that good.