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Travel Guide: Your Budget Friendly Olango Island Getaway!

Summer is again approaching and I bet you're already planning a getaway with your love 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 destination, 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 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 first thing to do is find a transportation to take us on places we want to check out around the island.

The island has two means of transporation, 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 it's location and after just 10 minutes we agreed on the itinerary of the 4 places/activities and the fare.

Let's rock!

READ ALSO:   Island Adventure Getaway in Camotes Island, Cebu

The Island Eco Tourism Park

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

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 city life even for a day, this place is right for you. Quiet, serene and a secluded place in the island where no  one will disturb you.

The camping site surrounded by coconut trees

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

The beach shoreline

You can also enjoy your time in 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.

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 in the side of the cottage in case you plan on cooking some food there. If you need help on something don't hesitate on asking the locals living in the area, they're friendly and accommodating.

The Cycling to Northern Part of the Island

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

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

Our driver lead us to a store at the back of Candagsao Elemtary 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 sun bathing, opss I mean pedaling, we reach Bantigue in Brgy. Tingo, a coastal brgy. in the northern part of the island.

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 awhile before going back to Cangasao in Brgy. Talima. I'm pretty sure you'll be awed in 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 distant.

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!

The Olango Wildlife Sanctuary

Location:   San Vicente, Olango Island
Entrance fee:   30 pesos

The Olango Wildlife Sanctuary is more than a hectare of sandflats and mangroves which serves as refuge for thousands of migratory birds during 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 wetland of international importance especially as waterfowl habitat.

The footwalk going to the observation deck 

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

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.

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 pesos

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

Yellow + Green? It's Yellow-green vegetation on the way to the sanctuary

Going to the marine sanctuary is taking the same road 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 a yellow and green leaves that looks pretty in its way. We've actually stopped for awhile to take photos of it. 

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 boarwalk which goes into a mangrove forest. The walk is actually enjoyable because sign boards are placed on each kind of mangroves with its scientific name, not to mention the scenic view while you're approaching the sea.

We don't have underwater cam with us so please be grateful of this top view photo of the fishes 

We opt for the fish feeding and snorkel activity. We were handed snorkel gears and was told a patrol boat is waiting at the end of the boardwalk to take us in 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 going 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 a hustle free transportation in your visit in Olango Island, you can contact Manong Greg in this number: 09197549677.

The Budget (Expenses)

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

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

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

TOTAL EXPENSE / person  =  639 pesos

Follow The Biyahero's adventures on social media:
Facebook:  @TheBiyahero
Instagram:  @thebiyahero

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