Why I visited Cagbalete Island for Four Times Already

Why I visited Cagbalete Island for Four Times Already

Let me get it straight, I've been in this island for few times already because of 2 reasons: its accessibility without the hassle of spending too much. 

Cagbalete Island (Quezon Province) is just 4-5 hours away from Manila wherein you can already experience white sand, pristine waters, and unspoiled shores. This island has a lot of resorts and accommodations so no need to worry about having a quick getaway (except for holidays and long weekends). 

I would suggest staying at the resorts we've tried staying in: Villa Noe, Nilandingan Cove and Villa Cleofas (twice). I have read a lot of travel blogs highly recommending Pansacola Beach Resort but we have yet to try it soon though we find the rates a little higher compared to the resorts we've tried already.


So to summarize my Cagbalete experiences:

Vila Noe (April 2015)

First time to ride a public boat (I quite feared that boat might be overloaded haha) for only 50php per head + 50php environmental fee (required) in tourism office

We rode public boat that can cater 100 pax

Sunset in Villa Noe

You can see how clear the waters were in this photo!

Villa Noe beach front

On our way to island-hopping tour

You have to go in Yang-in Sandbar: aside from its fine white sand, bakawans are grown there, too. Yup, see how clear the water is, even tiny fishes can be seen!

Nilandingan Cove (January 2016)

This is the farthest cove according to the tourism office. If I remember it right, it took us 1.5 hrs to get there through private boat (PhP 2500 for 3 pax, round trip). We went to Yang-in Sandbar again. 

I really commend their food (we even had snacks: Pancit Habhab) especially their liempo and bistek talong.

Literally taking a dip in the Yang-in sandbar

For the second time, this island did not disappoint me: you can see the sand ripples though the clear waters

These are growing bakawans!

Try rubbing this fine sand against your skin and you'll agree that it's really oh so fine

Few meters away from Nilandingan Cove beach front

Villa Cleofas (August 2017)

We went there as a couple (Aug 12-13, initially intended to stargaze Perseid meteor shower that time but weather did not permit us to do so) and as a group of 10 friends (Aug 19-20). Initially, the first trip to this resort served as an ocular visit before our barkada's trip (FYI: I was the organizer of the trip and the OC-ness in me just can't help but plan everything thoroughly and I wanted my friends to relax in the next weekend getaway).

It might not have white sand like Villa Noe but it has sandbar and it's near the Bonsai Island (can be seen on high tide and you can visit it by foot when low tide!)

Villa Cleofas beachfront: we rented a tent for Php400 for 2 pax and 50php entrance fee/head

The sandbar!

Kids playing beside the side bar

During sunset, when high tide starts coming in and covers the sandbar

We stayed in medium cottage: 3500php/night. It can fit 12pax.

Of course, we still went to Yang-in. To our surprise, there's already a private accommodation, hence, this nipa hut! It was actually our first time going here in high tide, too!

Still in Yang-in: guess what this was? It was a floating sari-sari store! We bought chichirya and newly-cooked Lucky Me Pancit Canton! Haha.

WE ACTUALLY WENT TO BONSAI ISLAND! We just usually pass by this small island during island-hopping. Nothing to do on a low-tide morning? This island is just across the resort and get to see mini pools, colorful fishes and mimic octopus. 

We actually got to discover Bonsai Island! Since it's low tide next morning, we walked a km away from resort to see this instant jacuzzi!

We got to discover MIMIC OCTOPUS on this island, too!

We rented private boat that can cater 15 pax for both to and fro trips

at the Sabang Port

How to get there:

Ride bus from JAC Liner Mauban route (Kamias/Buendia terminal) that departs at 3am. Alight from their Mauban terminal and ride a trike to Tourism office (you may tell the trike driver to wait for you outside the office as you pay for environmental fees or private boat fees if you don't have a prior contact person). After payment to Tourism office, you may now proceed to the exact port when public boat or private boat will accommodate you. ETA at Mauban port is 9am which means low tide in the island. Boat ride is usually 45 minutes (except for Nilandingan Cove which is the farthest cove for 1.5hrs). Alight from Sabang Port to ride habal-habal to Villa Cleofas.


Estimated Expenses (Villa Cleofas as reference):

Bus fare to Mauban - 270 php

Bus fare to Manila  - 270 php

Environmental fee c/o tourism office

Private Boat - 6000 php for 10 pax (inlcusive of to and fro trip + island hop)

         Contact Kuya Jerome for boat package 09194953545

Habal-habal ride - 25php/pax

Villa Cleofas entrance fee - 50php/pax

Hut accommodation for 12 pax - 3800php/night

Buffet - 900php/pax

         You can opt to have Tuna/Corned Beef Meal for 150php/meal


I hope this post will help you plan your trip to Cagbalete island! If you have questions, you may leave comments below or feel free to share this (I'll be glad if you do!) 


For more info:

Villa Cleofas: FB page  |  Website

Photo Credits to: Kayle Castro 



Paola Jane