Kalanggaman Island: Palompon’s Pride (2-day Itinerary and Travel Guide)

If there is a Rookie Island Award for last year, I would say that Kalanggaman Island would be nominated for it. This gorgeous island has caught the attention of the country starting 2013 and the number of people visiting it has been growing ever since.

This summer 2016, my friends and I decided to personally witness the beauty of this island and discover why Filipinos have included this in the list for the must-visit islands of the Philippines.

This blog is not just created to share our island experience. This is also a travel guide to Kalanggaman Island. Take notes and enjoy!

 

THE ADVENTURE

I would not say that the experience in the island is very unique because living in the Philippines, which is blessed with many white sand beaches and seas rich with marine life, the likes of Kalanggaman Island is not rare anymore.

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Photo credits: outoftownblog.com

 

 

The Beach
The island is blessed with its white sand beach and tall attractive coconut trees. What makes this island very attractive is its two sand bars extending from its left and right sides that let the island take the shape of a bird in its aerial view. I think that is how the island got its name. laughs

The place is wide enough for you to set up your tents and camps. Somehow, setting up a bonfire on the sands are prohibited to not destroy the white sands.

Henna Tattoo is also available if you want. We didn’t try it so I was not able to get the price.

They also have a space that would allow people to play Volleyball (they provide a net!). As for us, we played Sepak Takraw. Good thing to do before and after swimming the crystal clear waters!

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The Sea!
Clear waters surround the island. Usually, rip tide occurs in the side parts of the island. Thus, they only allow the people to swim on the center part of the island. Corals can already be found meters away from the sea shore. Be sure to bring your goggles, ear plugs, or snorkels to help you see the corals clearly.

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Photo credits: Arthur Almanzor

There are Sea Urchins and some poisonous corals and species, so be careful while you swim. Unfortunately, the marine life near the shore is no longer healthy. Majority of the corals are already destroyed and not so many fishes live there anymore. We absolutely enjoyed our moments spent with the little fishes surrounding us while we swim.

The Sunset ❤
The usual Philippine sunset glared at us as we admire its beauty.

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Photo credits: Zyra Bravo

During the night!
Because the place is far from the city, the sky is clearer at night. Count the shooting stars, the satellites, the constellations, and the airplanes you’re going to see! laughs The stars are beautiful and glittering. I just appreciate that solemn moment of watching the night sky. If only I had a good camera, I could’ve captured us beside the sea enjoying the sky. sighs

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Aside from appreciating the night sky, we also decided to make smores and brought our guitar to jam to some songs. After all the bonding we did, some of us retired to their tents and some slept outside. As for me, I decided to sleep on the beach chair I got from the other cottages. I think it is better to feel the breeze around you while you sleep. laughs

The Sunrise
Mr. Sun was breathtaking, as always.

 

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Photo credits: Zyra Bravo

That’s all for the fun activities. laughs I know that after seeing and reading our fun experience, you would be wanting to go there. So, I will also be giving you the technicalities of our trip!

 

HOW TO GO THERE

Kalanggaman Island is located in Palompon, Leyte. This is a second class municipality situated right after Ormoc City.

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The following are the choices for the transportation from Cebu City:

  • Ship to Ormoc City → Ride a bus or van to Palompon → Bangka to Kalanggaman
    – Boat ticket prices from Cebu to Ormoc ranges from Php 400.00 to Php 500.00 one way.
    – Bus or van fare from Ormoc to Palompon ranges from Php 80.00 to Php 110.00.
    – The rent for the bangka roundtrip from Palompon Poblacion to Kalanggaman island and back is Php 3000.00.
  • Bus or van to Bogo → Bogo by Boat to Palompon → Bangka to Kalanggaman
    – I cannot give you the fare rates for the Bogo to Palompon since I was not able to canvass about this route. Same price for the bangka to Kalanggaman.
  • To other parts of Leyte (Maasin, Hilongos, Baybay, Tacloban)  → Palompon → Bangka to Kalanggaman
    Boat ticket prices from Cebu to other parts of Leyte ranges from Php 200.00 to Php 600.00 one way.
    – Fare rates of buses or vans from the other parts of Leyte  to Palompon ranges from  Php 100.00 to Php 300.00 depends on the distance.
    – The rent for the bangka roundtrip from Palompon Poblacion to Kalanggaman island and back is Php 3000.00.

ITINERARY AND EXPENSES

I will be sharing our 2-day itinerary to Kalanggaman Island. I hope this would help you to be more creative about your plans and improve it for your own trip!

Be reminded that it would be cheaper if you travel as a group because of the bangka ride to Kalanggaman, which is Php 3000.00 (let me emphasize that ahaha).

This is our tentative list of expenses that our friend made before the trip. Thus, it does not exactly reflect our actual expenses. Our actual expenses per person was Php 2222.86, to be accurate because we chose to over-estimate with the food budget.

Itinerary and Expenses

Food
Our budget for the food was Php 500.00 and I think it was too big for a 2-day trip but it is better to put up a bigger estimate than the lower ones, right? Palompon’s public market is near their port, thus, you can buy ready-cooked food for your lunch and dinner before hopping on the bangka to Kalanggaman Island. That’s what we did and it served us well.

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Logistics
Cottages are also for rent. I think it was around Php 250.00 per cottage. Chairs are also available to be borrowed.

Others:
Don’t forget to bring the following (if applicable):

  • Utensils (Disposable is better)
  • Drinking water (two 5-gallons is enough for 15 people)
  • Ice and salt
  • Something for breakfast and early lunch for the next day (Ready to eat foods like canned goods)
  •  Cooked rice
  • Water for washing the dishes or bathing (There’s only salt water available in the island)
  • Charcoal for grilling
  • Tents or mats or sleeping bag
  • Blanket or jackets (It’s cold there at night)

And that’s a wrap for the technicalities. Last thing I would be talking about would be my two cents about the celebrated Kalanggaman Island and our trip.

I enjoyed my first ever island trip. I had it with my friends and I am glad that I went for this trip with them because, moments like this are always better when shared. So I recommend that you do the same as well. Not just to make expenses cheaper but to appreciate the moments more than travelling solo in an island (except of course if you really want to be alone haha).

Kalanggaman Island offers a white sand beach, crystal clear water, sand bars, alive marine life, and breath-taking view, but many islands in the Philippines offer that, too. That is why I can conclude that Kalanggaman Island is nice but not special and a little overrated. It is too crowded for me as well. It does not particularly have unique characteristics that would separate it from the rest and have some downside like the number of people going there but it is pretty as a whole.

Lastly, I would like to campaign for some things:

  • Marine Life Conservation: I am just a little sad that the island’s marine life is no longer that healthy anymore for the coral habitats near the shore. I hope the administration would monitor this closely. Also, for the visitors, I hope that whenever we visit, we also help in conserving the marine life by not throwing garbage to the sea and not destroying the coral reefs.
  • Do not throw trashes anywhere: Well, I think you already know what I mean on that.

Thank you for reading my Kalanggaman Island adventure! I hope you enjoyed and learned some interesting things.

D. M. P.

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