“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” —Rosalia de Castro
Ever heard the expression “No matter what you are trying to say, chances are, someone has already said it better?”That’s my stance when wandering. Courtesy aside to the writer of blogs I’ve read every time I do my research, they write and describe the places so well. But as they always say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Yes, I am pleased and excited but my satisfaction will only be guaranteed once I get to see these places myself.
Another long road to blissful escape set for the weekends: Alibihaban Island (some spelled it Alibijaban). 8-9 hours road trip all the way down to San Andres Quezon and 20-30 minutes outrigger boat ride to the island is what we have to endure to see this piece of paradise.
Jump Off Port to Alibihaban (San Andres Quezon)
Saying goodbye to San Andres with a Rainbow
The boat ride itself is already an adventure. It was small and you can feel the waves trying to rock it. When we arrived what welcomed us to the island is a typical Philippine Fishing Village with boats lined up along coast and nipa huts behind the coconut trees
Alibijaban is a small yet self-sustaining community. They have schools and small stores for their daily needs. Despite the scarcity of having a convenient life from an outsider’s perspective, I saw and felt that they are happy and contented with what they have. No all day supply of electricity and fresh running water.
This simple community rests just in front of the shore fronting the mainland of San Andres Quezon. They stem on fishing and copra farming as their main source of income. The island with a small community has kept its white sand coast clean and beautiful. A local said that they maintain it this clean and would usually be untidy on very few occasions which happens after a typhoon has swept the gulf.
It was 7 in the morning when we finally got a glimpse of Alibijaban Island. We settled our things. Some started pitching their tents and tied their hammocks. Several minutes past we hop on the boat and started discovering the riches of the jewels of the place.
As we wander around the island, we left some of our cooking stuff to be prepared so when we go back, lunch will be served. As the boat started to cruise in the open sea, I can’t help but be amazed of the turquoise water surrounding us. Perfect seascape with stunning rock formations added delight to our cruise. First stop was the snorkeling site where we can enjoy magnificent underwater world. It just so happen that the current were fierce but this did not hinder us from doing our thing. We had the entire island ourselves!!!
During our snorkeling and swimming activity, our boat gave up, the frame on the sides gave in so we had to go near the shore to have it fixed. I think, it’s also a blessing in disguise as we had the chance to some group pictorial on the rocks. A perfect spot for photo Ops.
We were taken to another great spot, white sand with mangroves surrounding it. I think this spot can be a great location for Survivor. There is a wooden cottage where you can have lunch for a fee or just take a little rest while enjoying the surrounding.
From afar, we can see the location of the sandbar, unfortunately it will take another 1-2 hours for it to appear. Majority are already hungry so we decided to go back to the base camp and have lunch instead. After having lunch, most of us if not all took some well deserved rest in preparation for our sand bar exploration. It was past 3 in the afternoon when we decided to go. We thought that the boat will be able to take us there, apparently the water is too low so we have to walk.
Though the sun is scorching hot, I am still able to enjoy view as we walk towards the sandbar. Passed by some rocky shores and another line of mangroves.
As we go near the sandbar, the view is just fantastic. The sandbar is a stretch of semi powdery white sand surrounded by crystal clear water. The surrounding water was ideally calm when we got there, the mangrove sanctuary served as its the picturesque backdrop.We tried to enjoy it as much as we can. The sand was generally smooth, but there were rough areas, as well.Nonetheless, swimming in the clear blue waters was a breeze Of course, the photo ops. We had plenty.
Tired of jumping, swimming and other acrobatic stunts we did, we went back with smiles. We freshen up and prepared our dinner. While the others are cooking, i tried to sleep, and yes I did. I was just awaken when I felt splash of water above me. Yay! I wasn't able to set up my tent with flysheet and it rained. I hurriedly grab the flysheet and went back to sleep. The rain stopped after several minutes. It was past 8 in the evening when we satisfied our gastronomic needs. Socials, ‘getting to know’ and a lot of travel fun was shared during the after dinner activities.We were talking so loud that I can hear everyone from a distance. We call it a night past 12 midnight.
I woke up as scheduled 5 in the morning. Had my coffee routine before breakfast. Did my last walk on the island and grab some great shots while savoring the paradise. This island is a perfect soul searching escape. If you are lucky enough during your travel, you will have this island all by yourself (of course with the exception of the locals living in here)
I had a great weekend in Alibihaban Island with superb travel buddies. Coming to work straight from this trip is something I did not mind. I am rejuvenated and at the same time grateful for another experience in this simple yet breath taking paradise.
Wallet Damage : Php 1,598.00 (all fees in the island, transportation and 3 on board meals with snacks)
Who said traveling needs to be expensive? Nah!