The Hidden Jewel Island of Antique – A Travel Guide

The devastation of typhoon Yolanda brought misfortune and tragedy to most people who are residing in the Visayas region. However, this occurrence shed light to a pristine island. With minimal human intervention to its development, it is dubbed as the hidden wonder island of Antique, attracting most tourists who want to be a step closer to nature.

It is said that its beauty is comparable to Boracay before it was commercialized. The residents thrive in the main industry of fishing. Thanks to the development and the intervention of its Local Government Unit, its tourism’s potential is continually rising. Presently,  escalating number of residents make their living from tourists.

If you are wondering what island activities await, here are some of the many you’ll enjoy.

FEAST ON SEA URCHINS

Since the island is rich in seafood, you can try and taste sea urchins in the locality. This is an exotic delicacy that you wouldn’t want to miss out. Ask for free taste if you want to try.

SWIMMING AND SNORKELING

The tempting tortoise waters of the island is undeniably irresistible with its untapped beauty and marine life, swimming is not an option but a must. In addition, the long stretch of the island sandbar is perfect for your next social media profile pic. This, however, depends on the tide.

BOATING AND SIGHT-SEEING

Share a boat with a friend or a stranger is one way to experience fulfillment on your trip. Enjoy the island’s scenery as it is offered by nature for free.

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One of the many activities you can do once in the island is boating.

SING KARAOKE WITH THE LOCALS

The locals on the island are so hospitable and friendly that you could sit in and sing with them. Since it is not like Boracay where parties trashed the island, you can enjoy a pure Filipino tradition of enjoying and singing around under the sun.

EXPLORE THE ISLET OF NABLAG

If you are visiting Malalison island and by chance, it is on low-tide, you can visit the nearby islet of Nablag. Very much like Malalison, it is uncharted and unspoiled.

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The view from the hill once you decide to go on trekking.

ISLAND TREKKING

The there is no denying the fact that you should experience climbing up the hills of Malalison. You’ll get an astounding and all-around view of the island. Rare pitcher plants are to be found in the surrounding area.

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The hills of Malalison Island are blessed with pitcher plants that add to the exoticism of the island.

Since you’ll be staying on an island, expect that you’ll never see fancy restaurants stationed where you can eat. Instead, you can eat at a local inn or have your host (for those who would prefer a homestay instead of deciding to rent a cottage at a local resort) to cook food for you. Fresh seafood is available for purchase from local fishermen.

If you’re opting for an overnight stay in Malalison, you can choose from following options.

HOMESTAY

Residents of the island have been trained by the Local Government Unit to accommodate guests. This is to empower tourism and income generation for locals. The homestay option is available, however it is only limited. Food and lodging is its main inclusion, however toiletries and other personal necessities are not included. Sari-sari stores are available in the surrounding area.

COTTAGES

For those who feel adventurous. Open cottages are available as a cheaper option when travelling by group. It’s best to bring tents to keep yourself warm during the night. Some cottages have private toilets and regular rooms. Ask a local tourist guide for options.

RESORTS OR INN

Aside from cottages and the homestay selections, comfortable resorts and inns are conveniently accessible for online booking  or walk in. These type of accommodation is best for family trips or high-end “barkada” getaways. Room rates vary. Check on available room rates below.

In this portion, you will read about the monetary aspect of the travel. The budget will not include airfare. At the same time, it will be on this portion on how you can reach Malalison Island.

Travel Itinerary From Ilo-ilo

Van from Molo terminal to Municipality of San Jose – Fare: 120.00

From San Jose de Buenavista, drop-off is at Dalipe.

From Dalipe, catch a van to Culasi. Fare: 120.00

Drop off is at the Municipal Hall of Culasi.

Take a tricycle to the port. Fare: 10.00

Boat ride from the mainland to the island is 750.00 for group of 5, round trip.

For solo travelerss, a group tour (joiner) is available for 150.00 per person, one way.

Rates:

Homestay: 300.00 (uniform rate)

Cottage: Start from 300 ( rates dependent to room size and number of people staying.

Terminal and Environmental Fee: 30.00 (upon registration)

Trekking: 250.00 for 4 ( guide fee ) not optional

Tent ( overnight camping): 150.00

Reminders:

  • The island doesn’t have electricity.
  • Generator only runs from 6PM – 10PM
  • Some homestays have available generators but with additional fee.
  • Don’t forget power banks for your gadgets.
  • Flashlight
  • Inform host if you have seafood allergy.
  • Toiletries
  • Comfort food, incase you get hungry in the middle of the night.
  • Bring medication if necessary.
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