KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

by - 7:08 PM

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

Five years ago, I set foot on the powdery white sand surrounded by a mix of cerulean and turquoise waters of Kalanggaman Island in Palompon, Leyte.  It is a hidden sanctuary, a bird sanctuary as they say, thus, the name Kalanggaman (langgam means bird in Cebuano).  Privileged as we were, the whole island was left to our group, to bask and simply enjoy.

Fast forward to 2016, the island now appears a picnic area with a number of cottages and pitched colorful tents that sprout from every corner.  Despite the inevitable, the island retains its natural beauty, with the long stretch of the famed sandbar continuously mesmerizing the visitors.

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

There are two equally panoramic sandbars/shoal situated at both ends of the island.  The crystal clear waters may have submerged a portion of it but the same is still visible.  With the strong and unpredictable underwater current on these sides, it remains off-limits for swimming.

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND


From the Palompon port, the island is visible.  It appears near but actually it takes 45 minutes to reach the island over open and at times undulated seas.

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

Unlike before where a plastic chair and a long table was set up at the port, there is now a concrete Tourism Office where registration and payment of appropriate fees is imposed for all visitors. Tours are now organized and boat rentals are arranged by the Tourism Office.  It is advisable to make reservations beforehand.

Upon reaching the island, we secured our spot near the docking area of the pump boats and the famed sandbar.  A number of coconut trees now served as the perfect shade unlike before where finding trees to hide from the direct sunlight was elusive.  The sunblock lotion remains a necessity though.

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

The sea breeze was so refreshing that with a bottle of beer and instant feast, we could be on deep slumber.  But we have limited time to explore and so we have to get going and move.  The whole island (islet) can be explored in less than a day and even an hour.  As we walked to the other end of the island where it has less visitors, I can’t help but smile as I recall the 3-day memories I had in the island back then.  Although this time is actually no different since I was with my favorite travel buddies as well.  It is really true that no two experiences are the same in one destination.


KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND


It is advisable to bring sufficient food supplies, sunblock, flashlight and tents if you intend to do an overnight stay.  There is a nearby market near the Palompon port and a small sari-sari store in the island itself but of course rates are excessive.

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

In complete contrast to the most photographed side of the island, the non-commercialized area is still an option for loitering.  With a sort of landscaped pathway where a mini-chapel stands on one side overlooking the open sea and where tourists go on kayak, we were lead to the other side of the island where rocks and corals serve as floor and where a few coconut trees stand.  From a distance is a shoal that adds an incontestable natural landscape worthy of visit.

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

If there were no time constraints, I am sure we could have stayed at the island for more days – simply wandering and drinking bottles of beer.

I can’t help but compare how Kalanggaman Island was when it was unknown to many, but we have to accept its natural course of fate that even with increasing number of tourists at the island, its natural beauty is still apparent.


KALANGGAMAN ISLAND


KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

It is impossible to have the island now all by yourself.  But sharing the experience with a number will surely raise awareness on eco-tourism conservation.

HOW TO GET THERE ON COMMUTE

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

From Metro Manila

The gateway will be Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport of Tacloban City on flight.  From Tacloban City, go to the Tacloban New Bus Terminal in Abucay and there are vans (estimated fare of PhP150.00) bound for Palompon in a 3-hr estimated travel time.

From Metro Cebu

There are shipping lines that travel direct to Palompon, Leyte from Cebu.  The entry point would either be Bogo, Cebu or Cebu City.

Bogo, Cebu – Palompon, Leyte via the Super Shuttle Ferry
Bogo to Palompon at 12:00PM daily
Palompon to Bogo at 7:30PM daily

Cebu City – Palompon, Leyte via Cokaliong Shipping Line
Pier 1 of Cebu City to Palompon at 8:00PM (Mon, Fri)
Pier 1 of Cebu City to Palompon at 12:00 NN (Sun)
Palompon to Cebu City Pier 1 at 8:00 AM (Tues, Fri)
Palompon to Cebu City Pier 1 at 10:00 PM (Sun)

From Palompon to Kalanggaman Island

Once at Palompon, proceed to Palompon’s Ecotours Office for registration and for the boat rentals arranged by their Office as well.  The last boat allowed by MARINA to depart for an overnight stay is at 5PM.

CONTACT DETAILS AND FEES

For inquiry and reservations contact Eco-Tourism Office (053) 555-9731/ 0917-3037269/ 09173037267/ 0998-5550572.

Entrance/Conservation Fee


Regular Rate (Day Tour)
Overnight Rate
International Tourist
PhP500.00
PhP750.00
Non-Palompon Tourist
PhP150.00
PhP225.00
Non-Palompon College Student
PhP40.00
PhP60.00
Non-Palompon High School Student
PhP30.00
PhP45.00
Non-Palompon Elem. Pupil
PhP20.00
PhP30.00
Non-Palomponganon Senior Citizen
PhP120.00
PhP180.00

Private Pumpboat                          
PhP3,000.00 – 15 capacity below           
PhP3,500.00 – 25 capacity below            
PhP4,000.00 – 30 capacity below            

KALANGGAMAN ISLAND

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2 comments

  1. Very cool. And it can be explored in an hour?! I hope it doesn't get too commercialized and I hope it stays preserved. Where were the birds?

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  2. Will be visiting Kalanggaman this weekend and this post excites me more! Can't wait! :D

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