Published: April 13th 2009April 13th 2009
Finding solace in Ambulong.
My trip to Occidental Mindoro was a bit unplanned. When I heard that a budget airline has released its new promo fares, I immediately grab this opportunity to book a flight to Occidental Mindoro without even knowing the places of interests. By searching the internet, I found some helpful tips enough to let me discover the beautiful white beaches of Occidental Mindoro. The inadequacy of infos on the Net has encouraged me to do this blog hoping that in my own little way, I'd be able to share some useful infos on how to explore the seemingly undiscovered paradise of Occidental Mindoro.
Day 1, April 7
I took the first flight going to San Jose, Occidental Mindoro. The flight was about 45 minutes.
The lady who sat beside me on the plane was a policewoman of San Jose name Tess Penaflor. She patiently waited for me until I collected my checked-in baggage. Together with the tricycle driver, they helped me find a decent place to stay. The name of the tricyle driver is Allan (09104449897). After checking out three hotels or should I say inns, I settled staying at Sikatuna Hotel. The room is Php400.00/night twin
sharing. This is just an ordinary room since most of the time I'll be out of the hotel. The nearby restaurant, Kusina ni Lea is a bliss since eating is something that I don't want to deprive myself of. After taking a quick shower I asked Allan to fetch me at around 8:00 AM so I can check the boat schedule bound to Ambulong. I discovered that they only have one trip going to the island. So I decided to hire the boat to bring me to and from the island. Allan helped me find a boatman and I was so lucky that Mang Jose Bukid, not only owns that boat but is also the barangay's head councilor or kagawad. He also is the caretaker of the Vice Mayor's resort in Ambulong. This has made my travel much easier and safer. I was on the boat together with a group Mang Jose is going to bring to Iling island. These locals asked me a lot of questions and voila! they all loved my company. And in a snap I gained new friends. You can contact Mang Jose thru his mobile number (+639294654691).
Jerson, the son of Mang Jose was
Harabata Resort, San Jose, Occidental Mindoro
so insistent that I visit the cave. We just paid PhP50 entrance fee. This actually goes to the owner of the land.
Although Mang Jose was so kind in offering me to stay in the resort, I requested if the family would allow me to stay on their place since I don't have any companion in the resort and the barangay's electrical supply is shut off every 9PM since they just solely rely on the generator.
I woke up early and took some shots of the beautiful sunrise. I left Ambulong for White Beach Island at around 8:30AM after having a breakfast with the family. A middle-aged lady is attending the island and the charge is PhP30 for the entrance and cottage rental is PhP100.00. I only stayed for 2 hours on this island. I could have stayed longer if I brought with me some food and drinks.
When I arrived in San Jose, Glen who's part of the group I rode with on the boat to Ambulong contacted me and invited me to stroll around the town proper. As a local, Glen knows every place in the community. He helped me explore San Jose.
Glen is a local elementary teacher. Before hitting the sack, Glen and I went to a karaoke bar for a much-needed drink of icy cold beer.
Glen suggested that I should go to Sablayan where the famous Pandan Island is located. We woke up at 3am to catch the 4am bus bound for Sablayan. We arrived in Sablayan at around 8am and immediately proceeded to the wharf for a 15-minute boat ride to Pandan Island. The fare is PhP200 per person. The magnificent white beach of Pandan took my breath away. The water is so clear and you can even see the corals, star fish and various fish even in shallow waters.
(Should you wish to see my other photos of my Respite to Occidental Mindoro, please visit my friendster or my facebook account: firstname.lastname@example.org).
There are more photos below