Lakawon: Fishermen’s Village Turned Into Island Resort
Belle Piccio | October 18, 2016
The white sand beach of this beautiful island off the coast of Negros Occidental is claimed to rival that of the popular Boracay island resort in Aklan.
Comparing it to Boracay, the size of the island is way smaller with less tourist influx and is not yet commercially developed.
The white sand island is called Lakawon. Located only about 48 kilometers north of Bacolod City, you only need to travel about 1.5 hours tops going to Brgy. Cadiz Viejo, Cadiz City. When you arrive at the port of Cadiz Viejo, go directly to the Barangay Hall for registration and payment of fees before crossing to the island. Prepare a total of Php270 per head (rates may subject to change without prior notice), see below:
- Php100 – entrance fee
- Php20 – environmental fee (for the community)
- Php150 – boat fare (roundtrip)
The boat ride going to the island is only 15-20 minutes from Cadiz Viejo port.
Did you know that the island used to be a fishermen’s village? Before it was totally turned into a resort, it holds about 300 households.
The island was greatly affected by Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) that the houses of the residents were almost totally destroyed. From then on, for the islander residents’ safety and for them to rebuild their lives again, they were relocated to the mainland (Cadiz).
After the devastation, the island was developed further. Most of the workers and the priority for employment are the island-residents that were relocated. They were given work based on their skills and capabilities. Most of the men were given a job as carpenters and construction workers while most women are in-charged of the beautification and cleanliness of the island like sweepers and cleaners. They can also become island staff like receptionists and supervisors among others.
Aside from the job opportunities, they were also given livelihood projects like pumpboats (motorized banca). They are grateful that because of the work given to them, they have a more stable income. Unlike before that if the weather is not good, they have nothing because they only depend on fishing and getting shells. Currently about 100 households that were relocated are working in the island.
Not only that the island is known for its beautiful white sand beach in Negros Occidental, it is also now becoming popular for its floating bar which is believed to be the biggest of its kind in Asia.
The floating bar can accommodate about 300 persons. It is the best place to view the whole island and another perfect spot for sunbathing with a relaxing view of the sea.
If you happen to visit this October 2016, you’ll only see 10% development of the island resort. Its target is to finish all the developments within 7 years.
How to Get There
From Manila, you can fly to Bacolod (Php4400++, round trip, 45-55 minutes). From Bacolod-Silay Airport, you can take a shuttle, or a cab to take you to the North Bus Terminal.
Cadiz City is only an hour drive from Bacolod City by private car. You can also ride a bus (one-way, 1 hour 15 minutes) at the Bacolod North Terming going to Cadiz City or buses plying to the North like Sagay City and nearby municipalities.
Cadiz City is also accessible to Cebu via the cities of San Carlos and Escalante. Passenger bus for Cebu also passed by at the bus terminal on scheduled trips.
When the bus arrives at Cadiz, tell the driver that you’ll go down at Crossing Burgos, Cadiz Viejo. From Crossing Burgos, take a motorcycle going to the Cadiz Port. From the port, pay the entrance and banca fees for your trip going to the island.