As much as I want to “DIY” all my #adVIENtures, there are some destinations that are better reached by joining an organized tour or availing a packaged trip. Especially for places around Luzon that could take 4 to 12 hours of travel time, both for van and boat ride. Unlike in Visayas and Mindanao where you could rent a motorcycle once you’re outside the airport.
Just like our recent holy week escapade this year in Calaguas Island which is in Vinzons, a municipal of Camarines Norte in Bicol Region located in the southern part of Luzon. We joined the 3D/2N organized tour by Sign of Arts Travel and Tours to Calaguas Island for Php3,300 per person. You may check out other travel organizer that would suit your budget, itinerary and date of travel.
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post, all opinions are objective and independent.
We reached Paracale Port at 10:30 AM and after securing all our items, our boat departed around 11:00 AM. But before we reach the island, we got caught on a low tide where the guys have to push the boat out of it and some girls went down to lessen the load. There were three other boats who had the same fate. We arrived in the island after an hour or so.
Things to Do
Going to Calaguas is good for relaxation since there seems not that much do but swim, hike and explore the beach and the island.
- Trek to View Deck
- Sandbar Photo Ops
- Beach Bumming
- Island Hopping
- Rock Formation Photo Ops
Where to Eat
In our case, we had six (6) hosted meals included in our packaged tour. The locals were the ones who prepare the meals for tourists which give them additional income. They have a kitchen and a dining place where they serve groups with 2-3 kind of dishes.
There are stores near the beach that serve cold refreshments like fruit shakes, mais con yelo and halo-halo. Barbecue and chips are also offered, however prices are 3 times higher compared to regular prices in the city, so it’s better to save your cravings when you get back.
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This is the usual itinerary for those who would avail the 3D/2N packaged tour which is perfect for those who want to escape from the city for the long weekend. A day at the beach doing nothing was what we wanted and it was achieved when we got there.
|Day 0||Land travel to Bicol|
|21:00||Pick Up at meeting place|
|22:00||Depature to Paracale|
|Day 1||Arrival in Calaguas|
|7:00||ETA in Paracale, Camarines Norte and Breakfast|
|8:00||ETD to Calaguas Island|
|11:00||ETA in Calagaus Island|
|13:00 – 18:00||Free Time, Swimming and Socials|
|Day 2||Island Hopping|
|5:00||Call Time for trekking|
|5:30||Photo Ops at View Deck|
|7:00||Back to Tent for Breakfast|
|8:00 – 11:00||Island hopping (Balagbag Island, Sandbar)|
|13:00 – 17:00||Free Time|
|Day 3||Back to Manila|
|7:00||Prep and Breakfast|
|9:00||ETD to Paracale|
|12:00||ETA in Paracale and Lunch|
|23:00||ETA in Manila|
As for the budget, aside from the Php3,300 joiner fee, we paid Php150 per person for the inclusion of the sand bar since it was far and not included in the free island hopping tour. Other expenses are for the food / snacks not included on the hosted meals which didn’t exceed Php1,000 for the both of us.
- If you have a rechargeable lamp or head light, it would be helpful during nighttime.
- Some tents have pillows and a blanket but it’s better to bring your own just in case.
- Travel organizers can arrange a cottage or room stay, if you prefer that than the camping tents.
- Comfort rooms are free but there are also pay per shower for Php40.
- No mobile signal on the island, you can get some at the view deck.
- Bring mosquito repellent.
- Don’t litter, leave nothing but footprints.
I hope this helps you know what to expect when joining an organized tours. Safe travels always!