Travel Guide: Your Budget Friendly Olango Island Getaway!

The Biyahero Jai in Island Eco Tourism Park

Summer is again approaching and I bet you're already planning a getaway with your loved ones, friends, or family perhaps. That goes the same with The Biyahero guys! I'm already excited for summer to come and in fact, I've already started summer this early in one of Cebu's underrated ecotourism destinations, Olango Island in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.

Olango Island is approximately 5 kilometers east of Mactan Island and one can reach the island by motor banca in more or less 30 minutes. The Angasil Wharf and the wharf near Movenpick Hotel have trips going to the island daily, scheduled every hour.

I prefer taking the Angasil Wharf because it's closer and travel time is lesser compared to the wharf near Movenpick Hotel. Arrived in the wharf 10 minutes before 10:00am, bought a ticket for the next motor banca, and boarded the trip which departed at 10:30am. We arrived in Santa Rosa wharf 5 minutes past 11:00am and the first thing to do is find transportation to take us to places we want to check out around the island.

The island has two means of transportation, the habal-habal and the tricycle (a habal-habal with a sidecar). I approached a tricycle driver to discuss the places we want to check out and make an itinerary based on its location and after just 10 minutes we agreed on the itinerary of the 4 places/activities and the fare.

Let's rock!

    Island Eco-Tourism Park

    Location:   Asinan, Sabang, Olango Island
    Entrance fee:   15

    The first stop is a tourism park in a coastal part of the island. The Island Eco-Tourism Park is a place of relaxation. If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of city life even for a day, this place is right for you. Quiet, serene, and a secluded place on the island where no one will disturb you.

    Camping ground in the Island Eco Tourism Park
    The camping site surrounded by coconut trees

    The park has an open ground often used as a campsite for visitors who wish to stay overnight. Stargazing would be a great activity here at night. Tent rental is also available in case you don't have one with you.

    Beach side of the Island Eco Tourism Park
    The beach shoreline

    You can also enjoy your time on the beach which is a big area of sandflats with shallow waters and surrounded by mangroves. It's a kid-friendly beach. I assume the water would only reach knee-high during high tide.  

    The cottage in the Island Eco Tourism Park
    The cottage where tables are placed

    There's also a big cottage near the beach where you can rent tables. A grilling area is available for use on the side of the cottage in case you plan on cooking some food there. If you need help with something don't hesitate on asking the locals living in the area, they're friendly and accommodating.

    Cycling to the Northern Part of the Island

    Location:   Candagsao, Talima, Olango Island
    Bicycle rental:   20 / hour

    After enjoying the ecotourism park in Brgy. Sabang, we were off to Brgy. Talima for our second stop. Cycling is another activity you can enjoy on Olango Island. In fact, you can roam around the island with just a bicycle.

    Our driver leads us to a store at the back of Candagsao Elementary School where bicycles are available for rent. We were handed mountain bikes and after just a few minutes we were on the road pedaling our way to the northern part of Olango Island. After 15 minutes of sunbathing, opss I mean pedaling, we reach Bantigue in Brgy. Tingo, a coastal brgy. in the northern part of the island.

    The ruins in Talima
    Resting under the shade of a coconut tree in front is a scenic view of the sea

    The ride is a bit tiring so we rested for a while before going back to Candagsao in Brgy. Talima. I'm pretty sure you'll be awed by the scenic view of the sea in front of us. The crystal clear water and the color of the sea will make you stay for a moment and stare at a distance.

    The ruins in Talima
    The ruins, remnants of once before a wall that surrounds a private property

    We still have two places to check out after this activity so we went back after 20 minutes of feeling the breeze and enjoying the moment by the sea. That sure was relaxing!

    Olango Wildlife Sanctuary

    Location:   San Vicente, Olango Island
    Entrance fee:   30

    The Olango Wildlife Sanctuary is more than a hectare of sandflats and mangroves which serves as a refuge for thousands of migratory birds during the winter season in Siberia, Northern China, and Japan. This reserve was proclaimed a protected area in 1992 and was recognized as 1st site in the Philippines with a wetland of international importance, especially as a waterfowl habitat.
    Concrete foot walk in Olango Wildlife Sanctuary
    The footwalk going to the observation deck 

    Visiting the wildlife sanctuary would be best from September to November where migratory birds flock to the reserve to find shelter and food.

    Viewing deck in Olango Wildlife Sanctuary
    The observation deck

    You can reach the observation deck on foot on a more or less half a kilometer footwalk.

    Did you know that there are 97 species of birds identified in this reserve? 48 of which are migratory birds while the rest are resident birds of the island.

    The Biyahero Jai using telescope to view migratory birds
    Checking out the birds and the view

    The best time for birdwatching is late afternoon from 4:00pm to 6:00pm as per the attendant in the reception area. Unfortunately, we were too early since we arrived just past 2:00pm but still, I had the opportunity to see a few egrets flying back and forth near the observation deck and some other species of birds that I don't recognize, ahahaha.

    The San Vicente Marine Sanctuary

    Location:   San Vicente, Olango Island
    Entrance fee:   25

    Our last stop, the San Vicente Marine Sanctuary. We arrived around 3:00pm and it's pretty quiet. It's Monday so there are not many people in the place now compared to weekends. And we're in good timing because it's low tide, the best time for a snorkel. Apparently, most of the visitors come here to purely enjoy swimming rather than snorkel. Maybe they're not into discovering the underwater world.

    Tree shades in San Vicente Marine Sanctuary
    Yellow + Green? It's Yellow-green vegetation on the way to the sanctuary

    Going to the marine sanctuary is taking the same road as going to the wildlife sanctuary. It's actually situated a few hundred meters before reaching the wildlife sanctuary.

    You can also enjoy the vegetation on your way to these places. I don't know what tree we were passing but it has yellow and green leaves that look pretty in their way. We've actually stopped for a while to take photos of it. 

    Bamboo foot walk going to viewing deck in San Vicente Marine Sanctuary
    The bamboo boardwalk going to the floating deck

    To go to the activity area of the marine sanctuary, we need to walk down a 500-meter bamboo boardwalk that goes into a mangrove forest. The walk is actually enjoyable because signboards are placed on each kind of mangroves with their scientific name, not to mention the scenic view while you're approaching the sea.

    Fishes in San Vicente Marine Santuary
    We don't have an underwater cam with us so please be grateful for this top view photo of the fishes

    We opt for fish feeding and snorkel activity. We were handed snorkel gears and were told a patrol boat is waiting at the end of the boardwalk to take us to the fish feeding area.

    I can't get enough with the fish feeding activity and literally swimming with the fishes but we have to stop to get ready to go back to Mactan Island. We were done with our activity around 4:00pm. We're off to Santa Rosa wharf and that pretty much concludes this trip.

    Thanks to Manong Greg for the patience in waiting for us in each of the 4 places we've visited. If you guys want hustle-free transportation on your visit to Olango Island, you can contact Manong Greg on this number: 09197549677.

    Rates & Other Information

    Motor Banca fare (forth and back):   24  (12 one way)
    Island Eco-Tourism Park entrance:  15
    Bicycle rental:  20
    Wildlife Sanctuary entrance:  30

    Marine Sanctuary activity:
    Fish feeding:  100 (inclusion on 25 entrance fee)
    Snorkel:  175 (inclusion of entrance fee)
    Fish feeding + Snorkel:  250

    Transportation + waiting time tip  -  600 (for two person) / 300 per person

    TOTAL EXPENSE / person  =  639 

    How to Get to Olango Island

    BY JEEPNEY:  From Cebu City, take a jeepney going Parkmall. In Parkmall PUJ terminal, take a jeepney with a route Mactan-Maribago and inform the driver to drop you off in Mactan New Town. Look for a tricycle in the barangay road on the right side of Mactan New Town that will take you to Angasil Port. Finally, take a motor banca to Santa Rosa, Olango island, your drop-off point in your Olango Island adventure.

    Alternatively, you can take a ferry from Pier 3 in Cebu City that's bound to Opon or at the back of Island Central and from there, take a jeepney going to Mactan New Town.

    BY CAR:  Search "Angasil Port" in Waze or Google Maps. Parking space is limited in Angasil Port because of its small area. Alternatively, you find a parking space in Mactan New Town and then rides a tricycle going to Angasil Port.

    The rates, contact details and other information indicated in this post are accurate from the time of writing but may change without's notice. Should you know any updated information regarding this post, please message us on Facebook.

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