Adventures and Sports

That Island That Everybody Knows About But No One Really Does: Corregidor

Metro Manila, , Cavite

James Luigi
James Luigi | Jan 05, 2015

A great destination to have a thrilling escape from the hustle and bustle of the Big City— this is how I would describe Corregidor Island. 

Orginally built as a Spanish naval checkpoint, the island was later on fortified by the Americans to defend the city of Manila from the Japanese warships during the World War II. But more than its historical sites, Corregidor has a lot more to offer as a tourist destination. 

The Amazing Day Trip

It will take an hour and half via ferry from the dock of CCP Complex in Pasay City to reach the island fortress. We were treated with a warm welcome by the island's personnel and assisted us to our designated tranvia bus.

While on board the tranvia, it felt like I time-travelled to the past when the American-era streetcar was still being operated. 

During the trip, I met the jolly and inspiring tourist guide Edward Gurrion. 51-year-old Mang Edward, who started as a porter in the island, has been giving tours for 18 years now.

Me and the other guests enjoyed Mang Edward's witty remarks as he explained facts about the island. 

The island displays remnants of the war which have been preserved and have become tourist attractions— the super-sized canons, beautiful ruins, old artillery, Spanish light house, and the historic Malinta tunnel.

The now silent guns have been accessible for tourists to look into and that includes the heavy artillery at the Battery Hearn and Battery Grubbs.

The island was also armed with two 10" disappearing guns located at Fort Mills built to further strengthen its seacoast defense during the battle. 

Visitors are given ample time to explore each site in Corregidor

 

Some of the beautiful ruins of the island
Pacific War Memorial Museum; photo by Mel Cortez.
Visitors looking at the photos of Manuel L. Quezon who took oath in Corregidor as President of the Commonwealth 

 

Take a closer look at the now silent guns used in wartime

 

 

Battery Hearn with Tranvia bus; photo by Mel Cortez.

 

The Malinta Tunnel

Built in 1932, the 836-ft. long tunnel was a bullet-proof bunker before it was converted into 1,000 bed hospital to serve as a shelter for soldiers. It also became the headquarters of Gen. Douglas MacArthur and his troops.

Visitors can take a walk down the path of history inside the tunnel through an audio-visual presentation by National Artist Lamberto V. Avellana, recollecting significant events that occured during the war. 

 

Inside the Malinta Tunnel

 

Life-sized figures in the audio-visual presentation

One of the many highlights of the tour is the sunset and sunrise watching — it’s the most breathtaking view, so much that you'd run out of words to describe the scene.

Visitors can bask in the warmth of the sun to relax, and if you're lucky enough, the view comes with a rainbow! 

Sunset watching at the Battery Grubbs overlooking the Bataan Peninsula 

Sunset watching at Battery Grubbs; photo by Mel Cortez.

The Creepy Night Tour 

Corregidor has so much in store especially for overnighters — brace yourself as soon as dusk falls, because the real adventure is yet to begin.

Part of the night tour is exploring the old Corregidor Hospital and the laterals of the Malinta Tunnel which are believed to be haunted places. Be ready to go ghost-hunting in the tunnel's 24 laterals!

The ruins of the Corregidor Hospital 

 

 

 

A visitor striking a pose in the tunnel's lateral
Pre-nuptial photo by Lee Llamas.

I actually find it quite ironic that the island is known for its horrific ghost stories (these are all hearsay), but it's an island with a very romantic beach view. I simply fell in love with this scene. 

I had a great stay in one of the cabanas at the Beach Front, and it's the part of the island where I experienced true peace and quiet.  

Beach Front Cabanas

Fun-Filled Activities

Bikers, who usually come as a group, go cycling around the island without having to worry about their safety on the road. The same goes for runners.

Biking around Corregidor; photo by Outside Slacker.

There are a lot of exciting activities that adventurers can choose from: ziplining, kayaking, ATV ride, and hiking. 

ROCKet Zipline; photo by Bernard Supetran.
Kayaking at South Beach; photo by SCI.
Be adventurous on the road and drive an all-terrain vehicle
ATVs in Corregidor; photo by Bernard Supetran.
Adventure Challenge ball relay; photo by Bernard Supetran.

The activities being offered aren't only for sports enthusiats. People who want to get closer to nature can have the best time enjoying the spectacular scenery of the place. They can also try a nature-oriented recreational activity, like birdwatching. 

Corregidor sighting: Asian Glossy Sterling; photo by Ely Teehankee.

What surprised me the most is the pristine water of the beach, where pebbles in various shapes and colors are visible underneath it. These scattered pebbles are actually perfect to use in trying out the art of stone balancing. 

End Your Tour with Another Tour

And what's the perfect way to end this trip? Treat yourself to a sumptuous dinner while cruising along Manila Bay at sunset.

A round trip will make you appreciate more the architecture of the buildings that line Manila's coast. 

 

The captivating sunset in Manila Bay 

I only had one realization after this trip: an island as beauitiful as Corregidor is just waiting to be rediscovered, and one doesn't have to go far to experience an unforgettable adventure. 

Plan now a weekend getaway with your family, or an escapade with your special someone! For more information, click here, or contact Sun Cruises, Inc. at +632 834 6857, or send an email to [email protected]


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