Beach Bum: A 24 HR Guide to Virgin Island, Bantayan


A travel in Cebu without beachin' is unworthy.  The wonderful island was surrounded by white sand beaches and a total of 167 neighboring islets. It was unexpected exploration to visit the unfamous Virgin Island (locally known as Sillion Island) at Bantayan Island, Cebu.

Bantayan Island is a lovely place with courteous and helpful people living on this unknown gem of Cebu. Bantayan Group of Island  consist of three municipalities namely Bantayan, Madridejos and Sta. Fe.

This island is four hours by land and one hour by sea, a total of five hours travel to reach this secluded and most breathtaking long stretch of powdery - white sand beaches and shimmering azure waters of Sta. Fe.

So how did I get to know Bantayan Island 
and make the most of it for a limited time?

A night before the unexpected trip, I read about articles and blogs about beaches in Cebu and Bantayan Island was on the list and I tried to read more about the the place on how to get there and what to expect.

MANDAUE CITY TO NORTH BUS TERMINAL

I woke up and stretch a little bit to loosen my joints because I am expecting that this day would be jump-packed. I prepared all the things that I need, not to forget my sunblock and bikini. (hahaha!) I managed to take a shower for ten minutes and be ready before six in the morning. I rented a Uber to take us to North Terminal Bus. The driver of the Uber was nice and told us  what are the other attractions of Cebu. I appreciate him for entertaining us for 30 - 45 minutes. We arrived at the North Bus Terminal, and asked the guard which bus we will take going to Hagnaya Port.


Since, the roadtrip will take us four hours, we decided to buy a water and will just have our breakfast along the way.

HAGNAYA PORT TO STA. FE PORT, BANTAYAN



We arrived at Hagnaya Port around eleven in the morning and the ferry (or we call it roro boat) will leave at 12:00 noon going to Sta. Fe Port. It was my first time to ride a ferry so I am a little bit terrified that I might get nausated and vomit. And the worst thing might happen was the ferry will sink and I don't know how to swim. (hahaha!) Overthinking kills my excitement.




On a daily basis, the ferry leaves at 7 am going to Sta. Fe Port, Bantayan and last trip is 5 pm. It will cost you around 170 php for one hour boat ride.

ARRIVED AT STA. FE - THE TRICYCLE



As we landed in Sta. Fe Port at 1: 30 pm, several locals awaited us and hoping to have a good deal from two silly girls who obviously don't have the slightest idea what they are doing. The offer includes motorcycle rental, tricycle service, island hopping tour, accomodation and so much more with the skyrocketing price. We tought that it would be practical if we walk around to find a place to sleep for a night. The tricycle driver offer us a good deal for a service, helping us to find a hotel and offer us  island tour for the amount of 1,500 php for two person, not bad.


We went to few of the hotels in Sta. Fe and unfortunately, all are fully booked. The good tricycle driver suggested us a place to sleep atleast we can put our things before heading to island hopping tour.

He brought us to Rizalyn Store and told us that the room is at the back and luckily its available, I checked the room, and it was fine for an hours of rest. It is airconditioned and has a private bath and toilet. The owner told us that sometimes there would be electric disruption ( 'brown out' ) at night. At the amount of 750 php per person we had a nice bed.

ISLAND HOPPING : UNTOUCHED VIRGIN ISLAND

After settling into our room and change clothes,  Kuya Jojo (the driver) was waiting for us to take us to the boat going to the unknown gem of Cebu, the untouched Virgin Island. At 2: 30 pm we arrived at the long stretch white sand beach of Sta. Fe. I am fascinated inspite of the hot and humid weather.



ARRIVED! HELLO! VIRGIN ISLAND













The Virgin Island was breathtaking. Its crystal blue water invites you to dip your whole body on it. The trip to Banatayan was super worth.  Virgin Island is a manicured island, well-staffed and very secure. The entrance fee was 250 php per person. The cottage/shelter is not for free so we decided not to pay for an extra. It is allowed to bring your own food and water because the store in the island is expensive.


You can do a lot of activity in Virgin Island, like feeding fish, diving - since, they have an area for divers, playing on the sands, or just stare at the horizontal blue sea while listening to music.

Overall, Virgin Island is  stunning BUT its quite pricey for two person unless your in a group. The place was picturesque and you are a beach bum!

EXPLORING STA. FE

At around five in the afternoon we went back to Sta. Fe for dinner. We walk around the small town and to my surprise there's several resto-bar, seafood restaurant, live band, food hawkers, soveiner shops and foreigners. Some of the expatriates living on the island were owners of hotel and restaurants.

There means of transporation is tricycle and motorcycle. They have also an access to internet and cell sites. According to Kuya Jojo, the commodities in their town was expensive.







SLEEP & REST, MORNING CAME!

The owner was right. There was a black-out at night. and they don't have generator.  It was humid so we decided not to close the door yet, however mosquitoes were present. Good thing was our mobiles were fully charged and we are able to scroll social medias and after 30 minutes of waiting, the electricity came back.

 I woke up early and decided to walk along the beach of Sta. Fe and wait for sunrise before having our breakfast. We decided to drop by to the famous Kota Beach Resort where the Camp Sawi movie  was made. I might find echanting camp master Sam Milby ( hahahah!).









HEADING BACK TO CITY AT 8:00 A.M.

It was an experience traveling to an island, unknown to others. The unexpected people you met along the way, the mouth-watering cuisine you ate and the spectacular view of the ocean was definitely on a travelers bucketlist. To Kuya Jojo, a very patient and honest driver, keep up the good work. Until next time!



The hashtag #saan ka dinala ng sumbrero mo series# at 
hashtag #alta glamouroza travels# 
ay hindi nagtatapos dito sa Bantayan Island. 

There are places waiting to be discover. There are people out there who have a big heart to help you explore a unique island. They are waiting to be loved and be captured by their awesomeness!



















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