Coron: Precious Jewel of Region 4

It’s been a 2 weeks now since we arrived from Coron, and up until now those pristine beaches and the wildlife keep on lingering on my thoughts, this is because 4 days aren’t enough to really experience the life in Coron.

On May 8-12, we had an opportunity to visit to Coron. We got our tickets from the introductory price of Philippine Airlines from Cebu to Coron at a lesser price. Supposedly this trip will be together with my childhood friends, unfortunately, Hazel wasn’t able to go home, and Min2 just transferred her company… so it’s Me & May together with my 4 teammates. 😊

Our trip itinerary isn’t really the best. We spent more than the others, however despite the twist of plans, we enjoyed Coron (I just wished we research and planned this trip thoroughly). One of the challenges that we had, was, Shalom, Kent and Bin will be going home one day ahead of us and plans changed after meeting May2 😊 Here’s how our Coron trip went:

Transportation:

  • From the airport, there are vans going to Coron for P130-P150.
  • In Coron, you can just go around by tricycle from P10-P20.
  • Van rentals are available going to Calauit if you prefer a DIY trip.
  • Chartered

Accommodation:

  • Bahay Kawayan
  • On our first 3 days, we were housed on an air-conditioned, family room that has 2 bunk beds. On our last night, we were housed on a fan room that can only accommodate 3 persons. Comfort and shower rooms are common. Taste Spoon is also on the vicinity where we enjoyed our breakfast & dinner moments plus our coffee sessions.

Trip Itinerary:

Day 1 – March 8: Arrival & Island Escapade Tour

Supposedly we will just do the town tour, and upon getting those leaflets in the airport, we realized that there’s nothing much to do in the town, we decided to either go on Island Escapade or Coron Ultimate Tour—since Sha, Kent & Bin will be going on home on Sunday, everyone just chose Island Escapade Tour. While we were on our way to Bahay Kawayan, Mai called Be Cool Travel and Tours if they can still accommodate us to the 830 AM trip, and we were very fortunate that they agreed to it.

It was just timely that we arrived in Coron at 7:30 and the tour starts at 8:30, we still had enough time to check-in and prepare ourselves. After few minutes a trike fetched us in Bahay Kawayan, and we went directly to the docking station/port. We paid P1400 for 3 islands. Since we were bit late, we were accommodated to the next boat wherein we need to wait more people to fill the boat. We departed at 9:45AM from Lualhatti Park. It took us 1hour and 30 minutes for us to arrive to our first stop – Bulog Dos Island.  

We then headed to Banana Island where we had our lunch and again, few minutes stay. After our lunch, we proceeded to Malcapuya Island to enjoy their so called ‘Open Aquarium’. Isn’t it amazing that upon dipping our excited selves we have seen a Sting Ray right away? Anyway, we didn’t pay a P100 just to ride in the boat to go to the snorkeling area. Thank you to Kuya who went and dragged us to the snorkeling area.

Anyway, since we need to get back to the mainland before 5, we departed Malcapuya Island at quarter to 4 and arrived at the mainland at 5:30 PM.

We just spent few minutes each island and that’s what I missed. We could have stayed longer if we departed from the mainland earlier. Maybe one of these days, we can spend more time on these islands. Not just step on it. Wish we could have stayed longer, but we weren’t allowed to stay until it gets dark, they say. It was a pretty long day.

Day 2: The Coron Ultimate Tour + Maquinit Spring

          Expenses: P1200/pax

  • Trike to Maquinit Spring = P700 (divided by 6 pax)
  • Maquinit Hot Spring = P200/pax

Since Bin, Sha & Kent will be leaving Coron on Sunday morning, everyone decided to just go with the Coron Ultimate Tour since as of Tuesday, we have been planning to go to Calauit, but it was just a plan. Mai already contacted someone and we have given a quote of P5000 for the van plus P150 for the breakfast, P500 for the boat going to Calauit Island and a P200 entrance fee. So combined the Tour A & B.

Day 3: Calauit Safari Park & Mt. Tapyas

          Expenses:

  • Van Rental = P5000 ( divided by 6 pax)
  • Boat to Calauit Island = P500 (divided by 6 pax)
  • Breakfast = P100/pax
  • Lunch = P150/pax

We departed Bahay Kawayan at 6AM and arrived at Calauit at 8:45 AM, and for us to reach Calauit Island there was a 7-minute boat ride to the island. Upon reaching the island, we paid P200 for the entrance fee (benefits for the locals), for the foreigners it P400.

I was amazed how big the island is. I have never been to South Africa but this place looks like a safari in Africa, similar to the TV shows 😊. I was happy that these tower of giraffes and dazzle of zebras are free, yet there are also animals that caged. Now, I didn’t regret going to safari.

We went back to Coron after lunch and we were pretty thankful for the safe and sound trip. We still had few hours to rest before we head to Mt. Tapyas.

We were headed to Mt. Tapyas to finally witness the sunset. We have been staying in Coron for 3 days that time and we haven’t seen a sunset on those two afternoons. It was a 700-ish steps to reach the peak. Upon reaching the peak, there will be several stops where trekkers could rest and take a breathtaking view of Coron. There’s also a part that you can take a picture where there is a hollywood sign like = CORON.

BUT FIRST- Coffee. We’ve already been addicted to Bahay Kawayan’s brewed coffee.

 Finally, we have reached the peak. Mai took a time lapse of the sunset, while the three of us strolled around the peak. It was truly beautiful as you can see the 360 view of Coron. Do not just stay infront of Mt. Tapyas, go around the peak and explore the mountain and you’ll be fascinated. It’s almost 6PM, and we reached the front view again. Everyone’s waiting for the sunset. You’ll be amazed on that area because there are more foreigners that the locals. It took almost 8 minutes for the sun to set down. That was breathtaking. 

It was our last night together and we decided to dine at Island Boy Grill. It has a live band and very suitable for groups. It just rained. Good thing it stopped after a while. We had a good food that night.

This is normally the recommended tour, but since we were able to visit Maquinit Spring on our 2nd day, we didn’t go there after our hike at Mt. Tapyas.

 

 

Day 4: DIY Island Hopping, Snorkeling & Church day

Bin, Sha & Kent went home in the morning while the three of us woke up late since we didn’t have and activity or any itinerary yet. We have been looking for another tour but it was already later than 8:30 AM – everyone’s pick-up time. We didn’t find the inland beaches nice to bum in, so we didn’t bother to go. Instead, we have been contacting several tours and finally, we have reached someone who owns a boat.

We started our island hopping at 12:30 NN, we didn’t have destinations in mind, but thanks to Kuya Gary, he drove us to Hidden Lagoon-we loved how clear the waters are and how turquoisey it is.  Our next stop is Banol Beach–while everyone’s going home, we had few minutes to beach bum in the island– We actually asked specifically for a snorkeling area, so they drove us to one snorkeling area where I guessed the highlight of that afternoon.

Expenses:

  • Chartered Boat = P2500
  • Banol Beach = P150
  • Buko Juice = P50
  • Snorkeling area = P100

Travel Notes:

  • Plan your travel ahead of time. If you are in group (6-8 pax) , it’s better to charter a boat, just pay your own entrance fees and buy your own food.
  • If you are going solo and on a budget travel, better to go with the groups because your payment includes everything (Entrance, environmental fees, buffet lunch & snacks).
  • ATM & BANKS – I have seen 3 banks and ATM in the mainland (BPI, Metro Bank and PNB), according to few, there were total of 4 ATM/Banks in the island. 
  • Trike costs P10 – P15 only

 

 

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