CRUISING WITH A HANGOVER

by - 6:02 PM

Mompong Island, Santa Cruz, Marinduque, Philippines
SANTA CRUZ, MARINDUQUE- Island hopping is a must in the itinerary of every traveler that crosses Santa Cruz in the island of Marinduque.  Being a coastal municipality, this part of Marinduque boasts of picturesque seascape of varied rock formations, pristine beaches and coves and a home to various ecosystems.

With the tagline as the Place to Cruise,  Santa Cruz indeed has something in store for beach lovers, passionate island hoppers and thrill-seekers.  Riding the waves and cruising through the calm, crystal clear and clean waters amidst the rays of the sun and the full intensity of the moon is a usual scenario.  Indeed, an adventure of contradictions. 

Let's now cruise Santa Cruz of Marinduque Island.

Getting There

From Dalahican Port of Lucena, Quezon, we boarded a RORO (Roll On/Roll Off) Ferry to approach the Balanacan Port in Marinduque, which is our gateway to Marinduque.  It takes two and half hours to reach Balanacan Port (260.00pesos fare per passenger for one way trip).  From Balanacan Port, we rode a van towards Santa Cruz, where travel time is approximately one hour (100 pesos fare per passenger for one way trip).

MANIWAYA ISLAND

This dolphin shaped island boasts of long stretches of white sand beaches on its southwest and northeast sides.  The island is accessible by a 30-minute boat ride from Buyabod Port of Santa Cruz.

We stayed at the island for almost four (4) days and experienced our own taste of being a Survivor in an isolated place enveloped in a picturesque seascape.

Our island experience shall be subject of a different blog post.  Overall, it was a great experience where memories shall last for a lifetime.

MOMPONG ISLAND
Travel Date:  March 29, 2013

The journey towards this island is breathtaking.  The island is known for its unique land bridge formation on its eastern fringe that brings additional attraction on its white sand beaches and laid back island ambiance.  Its unique topography offers myriad of possible terrestrial and marine adventures.

Getting There

It was around 9AM when we cruise towards Mompong Island and at that time I was nursing a hangover from my lambanog (coconut whisky) spree the night beforeThus, in no time I was able to reach the island unconscious for a couple of minutes.

According to locals, aside from the usual passenger boat trip to Mompong Island from Buyabod Port, one can go directly to Mompong Island via Catanauan, Quezon on board an outrigger canoe.  According to them, this route is much cheaper and takes less travel time.

As for us, since we stayed at Maniwaya Island, we chartered an outrigger canoe from a known boatman in the island named "Manong Daddy", where the rate is 1000.00 pesos inclusive of Palad Island, Mompong and our way back to Buyabod Port.  It was a great deal indeed from a kind hearted local.

As I Wander



As I disembarked from the canoe, we immediately proceeded to the Ungab rock formation to take a plunge under the shade of the notable landmark of the Island to protect us from the scorching heat of the sun.  The water was so cold and it was refreshing indeed.  For awhile my hangover was cured at an instant.  Thus, we took a lot of photos while swimming on the clear and cold waters of the island.

We were greeted by a physician who's practicing in Manila as well but was with his family for a vacation.  Mompong Island was his hometown and he owns a parcel of land on the island which he developed as a resort as well.  They were so kind and welcoming.  Truly, a mark of the blood from Marinduque.

From the said conversation, we learned that there was indeed a plan for Japanese investors to develop the island and turn it into like what the Bellarocca Resort is.  However, due to the relatively large sum of money that would be invested, the investors backed out.  This is due mainly to the fact that the island is a haven for coconut trees and so, it would require a much higher amount of investment to be able to clear the area.

coconut trees along the shores of Mompong Island

who would not be cured of hangover if this clear waters will greet you

Never ending photography sessions and swimming was the activity once again. 





family excursion - how lucky they are...


A cave can also be found in this island, which according to locals has narrow spaces and looking at our group, it would definitely be difficult for us to wander inside and do the spelunking.  (A reminder that we need to watch our diet). The fees are posted at the entrance of the caves.



With a limited time left, we were forced to abandon the island, with another hope of revisiting in the nearest future.  En route to Maniwaya Island, was a sight to behold.  The clear and varying hues of the waters appeared before us. Indeed, a proof unveiled that the island holds a rich marine and terrestrial life.









PALAD SAND BAR
Travel Date: March 29, 2013

Should you want to swim in the middle of the ocean, visit the Palad sand bar at around noon time and you'll see yourself afloat in the vast waters.


corals and the sand of Palad Sand Bar

outrigger canoes docked at the middle of nowhere

The island vanishes during high tide and so, locals advise that visitors get a glimpse of the island and do the necessary beach bumming, swimming and cam whoring during dawn or at least in the early morning.  As for our group, we visited the island at around 8AM and since my head really ached from that hangover, I forced myself to swim for a few minutes and lie down on the sand to sleep.  Thus, while my travel companions were enjoying the crystal clear waters that surround, I was up into something - dreaming in another dimension of the world.  I was only awakened when it was time to go.

Palad means the palm of your hand.  Indeed, the island is best described with the name it is known for.


x  x  x

These are but only few of the notable islands of Santa Cruz, still untouched by commercial developers.  Thus, a perfect getaway to unwind and commune with nature.






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1 comments

  1. Great island to go on Vacation.. Hope me and my family can go this place someday.. :)

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