Island days, island ways, caves, sand, and sunny rays!
Who does not love an island getaway to escape the hustle and bustle of the city? I don’t think there’s any of us here. Have you heard about Camotes island? I suggest you include it on your list.
CAMOTES ISLAND – “The Lost Horizon of the South”
“Camotes” means sweet potatoes in the Filipino language. The island was named after that because that was the main crop that farmers grow there. This is just one of the 7,107 islands the Philippines has, and one of the most beautiful. It is also called “the lost horizon of the South”. As to why I don’t know. 🙂
Camotes Islands comprises three major islands. They are Poro, Pacijan, and Ponlon. The main islands of Pacijan and Poro are connected by a 1.5-kilometer-long causeway.
How to get there?
Camotes is located in the eastern coast of the mainland Cebu. It is two hours away by boat from Danao Port.
From Cebu North Bus terminal, ride a bus going to Carmen or you can catch a multicab or a jeepney with Danao route. It is easy to find them, Danao cabs are numbered 27 on their body. The fare is 35 pesos. If you prefer airconditioned transportation, you can catch a V-hire from the SM terminal. The fare is 50 pesos. Tell the driver to drop you off at Danao Port.
When you reach Danao Port, you can buy a ticket for 220 pesos and 5 pesos for the terminal fee. Be there an hour before your desired boarding time if you don’t have a ticket yet because the line could be very long especially during peak season (March-May and November-January). The ride is approximately two hours, and you will arrive at Consuelo Port. Upon arrival, there are motorcycles and jeepneys for hire that offers hotel transfer for 50 pesos each. You can also rent a motorcycle for 500 pesos for a half day tour. You can choose to either drive it yourself or let the driver be your tour guide. (Some hotels offer motorbike for rent, too. Some also offer tour packages.)
Where to stay:
There are plenty of hotels around and some locals also open their houses for backpackers. If you prefer, you can bring your own tent. Bear in mind that these hotels are no 5 stars.
Here are some of the famous places to stay on the island:
- Santiago Bay Garden Resort
- Mangodlong Rock Resort
- Mangodlong Paradise Beach Resort
- Keshe Beach Resort
- Sunset Vista Resort
- Bellavista Mare Resort
- Flying Fish Resort
- Swiss Lagoon Restaurant and Hotel
What to do on the island?
We personally suggest touring the island with a motorcycle. The famous spots are accessible and easy to find. Don’t hesitate to ask the locals if you think you’re lost. 🙂
Here are some of the places you should visit on the island:
It is just a few meters away from Consuelo Port and is situated in San Fransisco town. It’s a small plaza or park, perfect for a picnic or you could just take a leisure walk around. The market is also near.
2. Buho Rock Resort
Don’t miss cliff jumping in Buho Rock. I attest you’ll regret not jumping. 😀
3. Timubo Cave
Next stop, is the famous Timubo Cave. You can opt to take a dip in the cold water inside the cave which is believed to heal illness.
4. Chasing the Sunset at Mangodlong Rock Resort
The island has a nice view of the sunset if you knew the right place to witness it. For us, Mangodlong Rock Resort was that perfect spot.
5. Lake Danao – Water Activities
If you’re into water activities, you should not miss Lake Danao Park. Try their kayaking, water balloon, and etc. They also have horseback riding.
6. Kanlingiw Garden and Pool
Have your snack at Kanlingiw Garden just beside Lake Danao Park. They have this mini-zoo, too.
7. Paraiso Cave
Another cave, you want? Drop by Paraiso Cave, too.
8. Santiago Bay
Feel the fine, white sand on your feet and the salt on the air at the beach. Santiago Bay is a public beach which means it’s for everyone.
Look at this wide beach.
Perfect for people who are afraid of the deep water. And just want to get tanned.
There are several restaurants on the beach, too. Just in case you get hungry after a long day. They serve Filipino dishes and kinds of seafood.
There are still a lot of places we need to discover on the island. And hopefully, in our next visit, we’ll get to explore them. 🙂
(Update: May 2019)
Here are new points of interest in the island this year.
Tulang Diot Island
Here’s the list of our expenses (Ace and I shared budget but I’m writing individual expenses for you) :
- Fare (Mandaue-Danao Port) – Php 30
- Boat ticket (Danao-Camotes) – Php 180
- Terminal fee – Php 5
- Motorcycle fee (Php 600/2) – Php 300
- Buho Rock Resort Entrance Fee – Php 20
- Timubo Cave Entrance Fee – Php 25
- Lake Danao – Php 15
- Kayaking Fee – Php 50
- Paraiso Cave – Php 35
- Mangudlong Rock Resort – Php 20
- Boat Ticket (Camotes-Danao) – Php 180 (economy)
- Terminal fee – Php 5
- Pedicab to Danao Terminal – Php 15
- Jeepney Fare (Danao to Mandaue) – Php 30
- Tent Rental – Php 350* (Our friends slept here.)
- Aircon Room at Bella Vista Mare Resort – Php 1450*
* This is where we slept.
** Food expenses are not included here because we have different preferences. Rest assured, food in Camotes Island is of reasonable prices.
Updated Fare as of May 2019
- Regular Fare (Php 220 – ec) / (Php 250 – ac)
- Student (Php 176 – ec) / Php 200 – ac)
- Senior, PWD (Php 157 – ec) / (Php 179 – ac)
- Minor (Php 110 -ec) / (Php 125 – ac)
We hope you find this travel guide useful. 🙂
‘Til our next wander!
Xoxo, Ace and Demi