One of our itineraries last summer was a day tour to Banana-Malcapuya Island loop. We hired Manong Fred’s boat for a whole day (his contact details are posted in my previous blog, Part 2). The previous day, we met with him to discuss our plan and the food we want to have for lunch the next day.
We left the pier before 9am and it was more than an hour’s ride from Coron town going to Malcapuya which was our first stop. We also had our lunch here. Entrance fee here was 200php/head while the table rent is 100php. The kids had fun at the beach and the whole stretch of white sand was picture-perfect for any photo-shooting addict.
After lunch we headed to nearby Banana Island — also another white sand island with snorkel sites nearby. The kids had fun frolicking in the sand and snorkeling. Entrance fee here is also 200/head.
We paid Manong Fred 4000php for this day tour. The produce bought from the wet market cost us between 800-900php for our group of 8. So our per head costs for this day tour is 1,025php including the entrance fees.
Last January, I planned our itinerary with Banana Island as the last destination for our island hop tour where we will sleep overnight. Manong Fred was the one who contacted the proprietors for our reservation. Nipa hut units with its own T&B can be had for 700/night and half rate for kids. The entrance fee is already included in that rate. Water though for bathing is scarce and had to be fetched by the staff to fill the water containers inside the huts for our use. Also, there is no restaurant in the island. So the food we ate from Day 1 lunch and dinner and Day 2 breakfast were already bought in the market by Manong Fred and his crew. Our menu was meticulously planned as our group always prioritizes this.
During our stay, we befriended the owner of the island. A group of foreigners were also staying in the island with us, who are kiteboarding during windy days. The island’s recreation room also has a videoke where we can sing for free but only until 12MN since power in the island is also limited. They close the power at around 3am and open it again at 6pm the following day. Some nipa units have power via solar panels and these rooms can be had for 1000/head per night.
Our 2nd day of island hopping led us to Malcapuya Island where we ate our breakfast. There were also overnight nipa hut rooms here for 700/head but the toilets & bath are outside and common.
We swam at the beach and watched kiteboarding foreigners catch the wind in the stretch of sea in front of the Malcapuya beach. We were also able to chat with the caretaker. He said that Boracay Regency resorts owned the island for some time and they were plans to develop this place as a full time resort. So maybe sometime in the near future, a visit here may be worth much more than 200/head!
Around 1030am, we left to proceed to Culion Island so we can be there in time for lunch and a little sight-seeing in the town.
Watch out for my next post — Coron Part 4 –Culion Island Tour