Islands and Beaches
Have You Explored This Side Of Bantayan Island? Be Transported To Paradise!
Aaliyah Ybanez | Jul 04, 2017
As the ship started docking on the Sta. Fe port of Bantayan Island, I got my very first glance what the isla has to offer: a stretch of fine white sand and tall coconut trees spread throughout the area. At once, I felt as if I already knew what the island would be like, even if it were my first time there. It's not difficult to fall in love with Bantayan, especially once you get to know it's little nooks and crooks.
How To Get There?
Bantayan Island is located in the northern part of Cebu. From Cebu City, go to the North Bus Terminal and look for a Ceres Bus/V-Hire that will take you to Hagnaya Port (Bus is around P200 regular; P160 Senior citizen/student discount), travel time is around 2-3 hours.
From there, take a ship bound for Sta. Fe, Bantayan Island (P150 regular; P130 student discount) the boat ride will take about an hour.
The best way to get around the area is by renting a motorbike. It usually costs around P250-P300 per day.
If you're wondering what it's like in Bantayan, think of Boracay before it became Boracay. The vibe is incredibly chill, you could spend hours bumming on the beach and trying to perfect your tan. I recommend going to Paradise Beach in Sta. Fe, the entrance fee is only P50 and the view beach is wonderful. Right beside the beach is the Paradise Camp Site. Here, you can opt to rent tents from the little store (in the middle of nowhere) and stay right by the ocean.
The place also has showers and bathrooms so you don't have to worry about having to go by the bushes.
The view is spectacular, miles and miles of unhindered blue and aqua ocean blending with the horizon. The place is also popular for its cliff diving site, please only jump when its high tide!
Where to Stay?
Despite Bantayan being a hidden gem, there are numerous options for lodging on the island, from hostels to resorts. I recommend N&F Guesthouse, the manager is incredibly kind and will not hesitate to answer any of your questions and give you recommendations on where to go on the island. They rent out motorbikes as well.
The island's main meeting hub is MJ Square. Here, there's rows of restaurants and a bar in the middle of the strip, Liquido. I suggest trying out Chef Panyang, the food is delicious but the service takes forever so be warned. For dessert, I highly recommend Cupcake Island, their Cream Cheese Brownie is the best.
You can opt to go island hopping, there's Virgin Island, which is a short boat trip from Bantayan. The little isla boasts of white, fine sand, snorkeling, and cliff diving as well. They also have a volleyball court on the island. The entrance fee is P500 for the first couple and then P100 per head after.
Have you been to this side of Bantayan? Share your experience with us by using #ChoosePhilippines on all your social media posts.
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