Camotes - Rediscovering the Island's Beauty

It was another long weekend so the family planned for another trip. Originally, we planned to go to Anda Bohol but because our Boholano relatives said it kept raining there, we thought this might not be the best time to go visit.

The next option was Bantayan Island but one of my friends told me her sister (who lives in Bantayan) was unable to come to mainland Cebu for the weekend because of the bad weather and huge waves. And whilst we were having this conversation, a news came up on TV about a twister in Bogo City which destroyed homes and pump boats. This made us rethink that we should not cross seas. We then decided to go to Tan-awan Oslob.

Early Saturday morning, we packed our things and got ready to go. When my brother knew we were going to Tan-awan, he said he won't be going with us since the place isn't child-friendly and not something he wished to be going back again. We were stuck in a dilemma *again* as to where to go.

I texted my friend to ask her sister about the weather in Bantayan. She said that Bantayan is sunny now. We decided to go to Bantayan *again*.

We passed by Danao port and seeing the seas were calm, our mother immediately suggested we go to Camotes instead. (Yeah, so this is how the family does the planning. Haha)

I, Mr. Kulot (SO) and little Akee (daughter) have already been to Camotes while it would be the first for the rest of the family.

So then, it's finally decided. Destination: Camotes Islands!



It was still 8 in the morning and the next trip would be by 2 PM. Oh my. To pass time, we shopped at Gaisano Capital Danao, played some games and had lunch. By 12 noon, we we went back to the port to get tickets. We brought with us the family car, too. Bill of lading and other fees will be posted at the end of this post. I am quite amazed at how good the crew is in instructing how to park the car inside the barge. By 2:30 PM, the barge is ready to set sail to Camotes Islands.

I was so in love with Camotes before that I actually went there two times in a year. But the last time I was there, it wasn't the same love, anymore. It got heavily crowded and man do I dislike large crowds. This time, I wished there wouldn't be too much people since it's already the BER-months. Lol.

The day before this trip, I was driving all the way to and from Pinamungajan to attend a friend's wedding, that's why I didn't get enough sleep. This made me 70% crankier on the two-hour ferry ride. Dolphins accompanied us but I wasn't even in the slightest mood to take pictures.

I just looked at the ocean and contemplated about life. Then I thought about the great flood during Noah's time. Then I remembered about how he sent out a dove to check if the waters had decreased from the ground. Then I thought about why they call it dove and how did the first humans discover words. Hooo. Yea, just random thoughts. Lol.

When we docked at Consuelo port, we were all set to go to Santiago Bay. :D

And oh! The vehicle did get some scratches which are very visible. No dents, just pretty (I mean ugly) big scratches.

Upon arriving, I was a bit disappointed at what I saw. There were trenches on the shore.

Santiago Bay Camotes
A trench at Santiago Bay Camotes
At first, I thought they were intentionally created which made me a bit angry. But then I later knew they had heavy rains and floods a few days ago which caused some parts of the shore to be washed out. I owe the people in Camotes an apology for thinking they did this.

We inquired at Pito's Sutukil if they have available rooms. Unfortunately, only one room is available and should be vacated at 11 the next morning since it is already reserved. We continued to look for other rooms and got to Payag Beach House Resort. The place was really cozy and we would have loved to stay there, but then again, only one room is available and it's only good for two persons. We went out and met an elder woman who asked us if we were looking for rooms. She happily led us to her own cottages at La Pascuala.

La Pascuala, Santiago Bay, Camotes Islands
La Pascuala contact numbers
We got two air-conditioned rooms at a good deal. Room rates will be posted at the end of this post. It was like fate really led us there. La Pascuala is located at the left part of Santiago Bay and so the shore doesn't have those trenches caused by the flood. And unlike at most parts of Santiago, this side isn't at all crowded. In fact, it's just us! Weeeeh! And remember I mentioned about fate bringing us here? Haha. Well, it seems the world is small after all. The owner of La Pascuala has a few mutual friends with my mother. Most are teachers and former neighbors. We were then informed that they have scheduled power interruption. Every Saturday, they have one-hour brownout. They do have solar energy but just enough to power lights.

We prepared dinner and got ready for some night swimming. The kids enjoyed playing in the water except for my daughter who is afraid of the dark. We brought two flashlights with us and she happily joined in the fun with her cousins. We didn't spend too much time in the water so we went back to the cottage, have a few chit-chats and drinks.

Little Akee slept early while the rest of the kids were busy playing with the tablet. It was hilarious when my niece told me she thinks there's a monster in the next room because she can hear weird noises. It was actually just my father snoring. Lol. And we did had a one-hour brownout.

We were having our inuman session outside of the cottage (well, I didn't really drink, I was too tired to drink haha) when suddenly a very strong wind blew non-stop. It was really strong that sand were being blown, too. I was a bit worried that this might be some kind of twister formation as what happened in Bogo a few days ago. I just bid the rest of the guys good night and went to bed.

Early the next morning, I was the first in our room to wake up. I went out to have a quick walk at the shore only to see that the weather isn't too cooperative - just like the last time when we went to Tabuelan (I was planning to write a blog post about it but I got too lazy haha). There were huge waves causing the fine sand to mix with seawater, making it look brownish.

Santiago Bay, Camotes Islands
Huge waves causing the sand to mix with seawater, making it look brown.
I got sad thinking we went there in a wrong time. But then again, enjoyment and happiness must not depend on the place. Happiness is not a destination but a way of life. (char) So we had to make the most out of this trip.

Santiago Bay, Camotes Islands
Sunrise at Santiago Bay
Santiago Bay, Camotes Islands
Feeling all summery.
Santiago Bay, Camotes Islands
See that smile?
The tide was getting low so the children (and the kids at heart) played in the sand.



For breakfast, our parents bought hotdog and sunny side up eggs from Pito's Sutukil. We were then informed that the last RORO trip would be by 1 PM so we need to be at the port by 12 noon. By 10 AM, we bid La Pascuala goodbye and proceeded to Mangodlong Rock Resort where we took many more photos.

Mangodlong Rock Resort
Parents, siblings and the kids. Akee and one niece missing because they were busy running around.
Mangodlong Rock Resort, Camotes Islands
No, I did not left my heart in Mangodlong. I brought them here. :)
Mangodlong Rock Resort, Camotes Islands
Mangodlong Rock Resort
We even saw a couple of very big blue jellyfish. Just the thought of swimming with these big fellows under there gives me shivers. Though I am not particularly afraid of deep waters, I am scared of what's under it.
Jellyfish at Mangodlong Rock Resort
Here's one of them. It may not look very big on the photo but in real life, it's ginormous!! And I'm not even exaggerating.
Mangodlong Rock Resort, Camotes
And there's another jellyfish. See that blue dot at the left of the photo? 
We proceeded to Lake Danao Park because my brother was looking for "something to do".

Lake Danao Park Entrance Fees
Entrance fees
Lake Danao Park, Camotes Islands
Mr. Kulot and little Akee.
Lake Danao Park, Camotes Islands
The famous Lake Danao in Camotes
And though we were chasing time, we still tried out some of their "rides".

Ralph went kayaking by himself.

Lake Danao Park, Camotes Islands
Ralph going solo.
 I, my SO, brother, sister and the rest of the kids rode this mini "boatcycle". (Sorry, I didn't get the name.)

Lake Danao Park, Camotes Islands
Brother, sister, niece and nephew.
Lake Danao Park, Camotes Islands
Together with Mr. Kulot, Akee and niece. And oh! The rest of the guys are behind us.
When it was nearing 12 noon, we proceeded on our way back to Consuelo port. 
My father took a wrong turn when we got out of Lake Danao Park. Instead of going left, he turned right. I just followed because I was thinking there might be a shortcut stated in their vehicle's GPS. (Oh right, we brought two cars with us) While we were also relying on Google Maps, we were confused as it shows that we are going farther from the port. I called them and turned out we really did went to the wrong direction. Lol.

So we hurried back and arrived at the port by 12. When we got there,we discovered that we were misinformed. (lol) The last RORO trip is still on 5 PM and they would only issue tickets for the 5 PM ride after the 3 PM Express departs. It would be an awful long wait at the port so we decided to go back to Santiago and have lunch.

We had sinuglaw, sizzling gambas, sizzling squid, bam-e and crab at Pito's Sutukil. Their food is, as always, very delectable! The only con is their serving got smaller. It is now good for one to two persons only.

Pito's Sutukil at Santiago Bay, Camotes Islands
Lunch at Pito's Sutukil
Pito's Sutukil at Santiago Bay, Camotes Islands
Everyone's hungry.
We also overheard a conversation from the next table. They said their visit isn't worth it. It's depressing to hear such comments especially since I really loved this place a few years back. But I certainly cannot blame them. They visited in the wrong time. If only they have seen Camotes before it got so crowded. If only they have seen it in its "summery" condition. If only they have seen what I saw and experienced in Camotes four years ago, they may see the island differently.

2 PM and we went back to Consuelo port to get tickets for Danao. We had some pizza, sandwich, cupcakes, coffee, and shakes at Cafe Aroma to pass time.

Cafe Aroma - Consuelo Port
Waiting for orders
Cafe Aroma - Consuelo Port
Classic
Cafe Aroma - Consuelo Port
Adds to the ambience.
Cafe Aroma - Consuelo Port
Cupcakes
Cafe Aroma - Consuelo Port
Akee looks like a tourist.
We departed at 5:30 PM and reached mainland Cebu by 7:30 PM.

Though it wasn't the best weather to visit Camotes, my family didn't have any complaints. They were contented with the island's beauty despite traces of Mother Nature's wrath. Though they didn't get the chance to visit some of the caves because we don't have enough time, they still enjoyed the short time we stayed there.

Camotes would always boast of its caves, white sand beaches and scenic views. Nature could be harsh sometimes but that doesn't mean we humans should be, too. Give Camotes some time to recover. :) It will surely be a place worth revisiting.

Expenses

Danao to Camotes
- Adult 180/head
- Student 150/head
- Child 90/head
- Bill of Lading 1200 * requires OR/CR
- Wharfage Fee 168
- Arrastre Fee 50
- Terminal Fee 5/head
Consuelo Port
- Municipal Fee 20 per vehicle * guess this is the unloading fee
La Pascuala
- Room good for 4 pax 2000
- Room good for 6 pax 3000
Mangodlong Rock Resort 20/head
Lake Danao Park
- Adult 15/head
- Child 5/head
- Kayak 50 for 30 minutes
- Boatcycle 50 for 30 minutes
Camotes to Danao
- Adult 180/head
- Student 150/head
- Bill of Lading and Arrastre Fee 1500 * requires OR/CR
- Terminal Fee 5/head
- Wharfage Fee 84
Danao Port
- Wharfage Fee 84 * can already be secured at Danao port before going to Camotes

Contact Numbers

La Pascuala Beach and Cottages
Brgy. Santiago, San Francisco, Camotes, Cebu, Philippines
0906 313 7255 | 0917 304 1635 | 0917 331 9967

Extra Tip

Secure a round-trip ticket at Jomalia's main office two days before your trip.

Comments

  1. Good thing you got a layout of the expenses on the island. I've been traveling for quite a while already but haven't visited this island yet. Ghaaaad....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It gets costly every year!! Hahaha. The first time I went to Camotes, 2k was more than enough. I was able to buy pasalubong that time, too.

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