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One day island hopping in Coron

Omg I love Coron! So this is probably the 30th island I've been on during this trip. I'm waiting to get tired of island hopping but its still not happening. My boat ride from El Nido to Coron was pretty 'interesting'. Nevertheless, I made it to Coron. Spent the whole day island hopping, swimming in the refreshingly beautiful lakes & getting stung by jellyfish.







Highlights: Gorgeous islands! Beautiful clear blue water! Fish feeding!
Cast of Characters: Me, Eds, Odra, Alex (a.k.a. the German), Sartori (a.k.a. the Greek), lolo & our boat crew
Logistics/ Links: Upon reaching Coron, I had no plans or reservations. I just knew I wanted to go island hopping. So I made sure to get up early the next day (around 7am) to check out whats offered in town. When I left the hotel, sure enough there were island hopping booths all over the place. I just went to one across the street. Company is called El Bacuit Philippines. Email: elbacuit_philippines@yahoo.com. They were doing tour A & B that day. I booked tour A which had Kayangan lake. They told me to come back at 8:30am. I was all set!
When: Dec 7, 2011. Weather was good! Thankfully it wasn't raining that day. I heard from the news though that even during the later half of December they still had storms passing through.
Location: Coron, Philippines
Cost: Php 650 or about $15 for the island hopping trip. This includes lunch already but no mask/ fins. That is extra Php50/ $1.
Trip Report:
The island hopping trip takes you to about 5 islands. I swear I saw on their ad that "Coral Garden" was included. I was sooo looking forward to seeing some nice corals after the underwater cemetery of El Nido. And they skipped it!!! I asked some other folks that were supposed to go also but it seems like nobody else went to Coral Gardens that day. Maybe the waves were too rough. Oh well. I made a fuss of course. Maybe next time.

I think all the boats that come from El Nido dock at Seadive resort. When I got there, I made sure to ask how the island hopping works. They told me I can check their dive shop for island tours. I went there & it was not encouraging. They told me it was Php1,500 for the boat rental island hopping. I retreated back to my room & decided to ask around the next day. 
When I checked in at the El Nido ferry terminal, they handed me a little brochure of an island hopping company. They promise to keep you away from the Lonely Planet track. I might try them next time I'm in town if I recruit enough travel buddies. 


Sooo gorgeous!!! If I had more time, it would have been reeeally nice to kayak around the place.

We only spent 30mins taking pictures at this spot. If you have enough people to rent your own boat, make sure you go super early (maybe start at 8am). This is at Kayangan lake. This was probably around 9-10am when all the tour boats start arriving. Oooh! Also, if you only have one day in Coron- they have an island hopping trip (for much, much more) that takes you to all the highlights of the Bacuit archipelago. I think its like tour F or something. 

There were already a few people at the lake when we got there. Not too many tourists though. I don't think Philippines gets too many tourists- period. Which makes it reeeally nice when you get have beautiful places like this to yourself. Its nice (& amazing) how they have managed to keep the place pristine.

So pretty! Its a freshwater lake out here. I didn't sample it, but that's what they said.

Don't think there's much to see underwater. You don't need your mask. I think I should've brought my fins though for faster swimming. Swimming can be tiring so its nice to have your life vest with you. Also I got leg cramps a few times so it came in pretty handy.

L-R: Odra & Eds. It was soo much fun to have them as travel buddies. Odra just has jokes coming in non-stop. They make me miss all my Pinoy friends. Now I just want to go back & live there for good.

Its sooo bluuuue!!

Limestone cliffs

Watch out for sea urchin clusters. The fishies here are not afraid of anything! I saw a few of them just staring at me as I was swimming around. A few of them were trying to charge at me too! I felt a little nip here & there.

Fish feeding!!!

Corals! The German (who is an experienced diver) didn't bother to go snorkeling. Seems like they have better awareness here at Coron when it comes to coral protection. They have little buoys that folks use to anchor their boat. At El Nido the corals are dead because boat men just toss out their anchors wherever. Its sad. Wonder if there's any hope to reviving them.

Pretty!

Ahem

I think this was Twin Lakes area. Coron islands have a slightly different character from El Nido I think. A lot of tourists I encountered did not like Coron. They mentioned how the town is just ugly. I really liked their islands though & how everything around this area is clean. Coron doesn't have a beach. I stayed at the bayside area (the water looks like nasty sewage).

Of course a picture of me in it!

Access to the lake. You have to swim through that little opening below the stone cliff. You can also try to go up/ down the ladder. The water inside is freakin cold! I got stung by a long tentacled jelly fish on my way out. Another poor tourist got stung reeally bad on their way in. The tentacles were draped all across his leg. Eeep! The guides rushed out with vinegar & poured it all over. They gave me some ice too. The other tourists ended up retreating back to their boats & missing out on the place.

One of our boat crew trying to pluck out a sea urchin. He got one & brought it up to the surface to show me. Interesting.

Corals

More corals.

Eds & Odra fish feeding. We ended up having dinner together at Seadive Restaurant. The happy German also joined us. It was really nice! Hope to come across their way in the future again.

1 comment:

  1. I just discovered your blog. You hadn't mentioned it when we met :)

    Coron is so beautiful!!! I should have jumped on the boat with you when I had the chance.

    Great Blog Steph! More power to you and your travels!

    ReplyDelete

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