WELCOMING SUMMER WITH TARA GUMALA
Holy Week Escapade
Heyyy! Summer has officially started, we all can feel it! The heat index has gone up and people are starting to go out as the school year has ended. I have been organizing trips with and for my friends for the past year and as the summer started, Elvis and I thought that we should go on a trip that is near the Metro and somehow avoid the crowded place. We thought of Cagbalete Island in Quezon, which is just 3 hours drive from Manila and has a good colleague who owns a resort in the island, her name is Ms. Jen Torre. Too bad that I was not able to have a picture with her, we were so busy that day, but here's a 360 view of the whole resort.
Mauban, Quezon is a first class municipality in Quezon, it was made famous because of Cagbalete, as it is the main jump - off going to the island. Mauban has many things and sights to offer, more than the white sand beach of Cagbalete. They have several waterfalls, one of which is the Dahoyhoy Falls. Not famous to all, as this place is only reachable by foot or bike. If you are into rustic vibes, they have several ancestral houses that were built during the spanish era.
|Panoramic view of the island during low tide
Cagbalete Island is a small island in the eastern part of Mauban, Quezon. It is famous for its long stretch of creamy white sand. It may not be fine as compared to Calaguas or Boracay but if you love white sand combined with crystal clear water, Cagbalete will be your best option. Plus, it has the perfect sunrise!
HOW TO GET THERE?
1. Via private car
From Manila, you can either take SLEX or Manila East Road/R5. If via SLEX, you can exit at Turbina then off to Calamba - Los Banos - Pagsanjan - Cavinti - Lucban - Mauban. If via R5, you will pass through almost all the municipalities in Rizal and Laguna.
2. Via public vehicle
Your jump off point will be Lucena, as this is the grand terminal in Quezon. Going to Lucena is very easy as there are lots of bus companies offering hourly trip going there. From Lucena, you can either ride a bus or vans that goes straight to Mauban.
*Once you've reached Mauban, proceed to the port area and ride either Private or Public Boat to Cagbalete.
Disclaimer: Sorry, I have no idea how much is the bus fare as we rented a van on our way to Mauban.
*** For Van Inquiries: You may call Sir Macq at 0998 - 5615 - 736.
The public boat only costs 70 Php per head while the private boat ranges from 2,000 Php to 5,000 Php for a two - way trip. If time is of the essence, renting a boat is your best option. During holy week, expect high volume of tourist wanting to visit the island, waiting time for a public boat could take you up to more than 4 hours.
HOW TO GO HOME?
HOW TO GO HOME?
1. Again, if you are visiting the place during peak season, securing your return trip is highly recommended. Negotiate with your boatmen and ensure that you have their numbers just in case they forget your pick up time.
2. If commuting, ensure that you get back at Mauban Port before lunchtime as there are limited trips going to Manila via JAC Liner.
2:00 AM Meet up at Jolibee Shaw
2:30 AM Travel to Cagbalete
7:00 AM ETA at Cagbalete (We were caught in traffic at SLEX)
7:00 AM Secured tickets at the port, waited for an available boat.
11:00 AM Travel to Cagbalete Island
12:00 NN ETA Cagbalete Island, Pitch Tent, Lunch
4:00 PM Socials
7:00 PM Dinner, Party at the Beach, Socials!
5:00 AM Wake up, watch sunrise
6:30 AM Island Hopping
9:30 AM Heavy Breakfast, Wash up
10:30 AM Break Camp
12:00 NN ETD for Mauban Port
1:00 PM Lunch, Wash up
3:00 PM Travel to Dahoyhoy Falls
3:30 PM Trek to Dahoyhoy Falls
5:30 PM Travel back to Manila
8:00 PM Dinner at Emin and Mila's Canteen in Pagsanjan
12:00 MN ETA Manila
Our Budget: 1,500 Php (inclusive of all transpo, environmental fees and food)
1. It would be best if you have a contact at Cagbalete Island, it makes all thing easier. :) Luckily, I have an angel who owns a place in Cagbalete, her name is Ms. Jen Torre of Joven's Blue Sea Beach Resort. She is very accommodating and answered all my queries plus, their rates are reasonably priced. Be sure to book your next trip with them.
2. You will curse the place during low tide. HAHA! We were forced to walk under the scorching heat of sun just to ride a boat because they could not dock at the shore. Looking on the bright side, hello sand bar! Perfect time to travel to Cagbalete Island from Mauban Port is at 6 in the morning. Low tide starts at 9 in the morning and ends around 4 in the afternoon.
|Vandalized Sand bar!
4. Cagbalete is one of the best places for sunrise. Be sure to wake up early and capture the magical moment. Plus, during holy week expect a blood moon! :)
|A couple enjoying the blood moon.
5. During peak season each resort has their own way of keeping the whole island alive e.g. live bands, strobe lights, fireworks, fire dancers, etc.
6. The best time to do island tour is between 4pm - 6pm (sandbar is visible and witness the sunset) or 6am-8am (best time for snorkeling and perfect lighting for photo shoot). The tour usually range from 1,500 to 2,000 which is good for 10 pax.
7. Bring extra cash because there are no ATM in the island and bring all the things you need before heading to the island e.g. drinking water, food and booze. *wink*
|This is Sir Edgardo, you can contact him with this number (0907) 854 5945 if you want to visit Dahoyhoy Falls
|Diyosa ng Tubig!
|With the whole gang!
9. Before heading back to Manila, be sure to try Emin and Mila's Canteen in Pagsanjan, Laguna. "Mura na, Masarap pa!"
Verdict of Tara Gumala: Cagbalete Island is a must visit if you are looking for a white sand that is quite near the metro: perfect for weekend warriors! If you are a fan of white sand beaches, you'll definitely enjoy this island, its long-stretch of white sand will leave you breathless (literally and figuratively).
Joven's has the best view for sunrise!
PS: Watch our video Cagbalete Island X Dahoyhoy Falls trip last Holy Week. Shot by Xperia Z5!
Ano, TARA GUMALA??