Whacky Notes: Getting to Kalanggaman Island

Planning to go to Kalanggaman Island? Yes?
  • Destination: Kalanggaman Island, Palompon Leyte
    • ORIGIN 1: Cebu City North Bus Terminal.
      • There are multiple starting points - Nailon Bogo, Polambato Bogo, Maya Bagay, or Malapascua Island. You can start by heading to North Bus Terminal after deciding which port to mark your origin.
      • If you successfully found an outrigger to bring you to the Kalanggaman Island, then bravo. But if not, haggling is the best option.
    • ORIGIN 2: Palompon, Leyte
      • Visit their Tourism Office for a schedule and boat contact. They can arrange tour package for you.
  • Travel time.
    • Usually, it would take 2-3 hours to the island from Cebu [ Nailon Bogo, Polambato Wharf Bogo, Maya Bagay, or Malapascua Island]
    • The fastest route is via Malapasua Island. Approximately 2 hours.
  • Fares.
    • For 20+ heads, daytrip rate is usually around 5,000-7,000 but it's case to case basis. Overnight is another story. It's usually 9,000 or more.
  • Accomodation.
    • There are no room accomodations or resorts in the island. Cottages are available at 250.00.
    • Planning to go overnight? Bring a tent or mat with you.
    • Entrance fee are more expensive for non-Palompon tourists. 
    • No convenience stores or restaurants. So bring your own supplies and food with you.
    • Note: No potable fresh water, electricity but there are changing rooms and comfort rooms.
  • Supplies.
    • Did I mention that there are no convenience stores in the island?
  • Budget Breakdown.
    • Expenses good for 25 people. Daytrip.
  • Contacts:
    • Randyl - 0915.851.6135
    • Bogo Tourism Office - 032.434.8583 | 032.251.2001

  • Trip Summary. [Day Trip]

Whacky Turn-off:
Travelling is undoubtedly fun but we should always be sensitive in conserving and preserving the environment. As I was strolling around the island, I see garbage squattered almost everywhere. Tourists must've dispatched their plastics irresponsibly. This stained the whole idea of isolation.

Whacky thoughts:
If given the chance, I would've preferred to stay overnight in the island. Too bad we were not able to prepare for it. My opinion? Best time to go would be early summer [early Feb or Mar] to avoid the crowd.


Cala-Kalanggaman Island Hullabaloo

Here comes the sun... :]

'Naa nami sa bus. Padung nami sa Maya.' Timecheck: 3:00AM. The stars were still out when we got the go signal. It's still months before December but I felt like a kid on Christmas. I struggled to contain my excitement. I've been wanting to go on this trip for quite sometime now.

7:00AM. Osang contacted our boat ride days before and already made arrangements. The 25-head capacity boat that'll bring us to Kalanggaman Island was already on stand-by in Maya Port. Maya port, located on the northern tip of Cebu, is also the drop-off point for tourists going to Malapascua Island. Riz, 5 of my highschool friends and 18 of my friends from EWIT Mountaineering Group boarded the boat all revved up and steaming with excitement; evident through our non-stop laughter and chatters.

It was a good 1 hour and 30 minutes ride from the port to the island. It was a rough ride, with sporadic big waves but the high and mighty sun was out to assure us that we'll have a great time.
Photo taken by Sir Ice of EWIT Moutaineering Group
With eyes set on the horizon, we were all anxious as to when we'll set foot on land. We were busy counting flying fishes on the sides when a small mound of land emerged in the horizon. This made every little nerve in me jump for joy. Finally, after months of planning and waiting, Kalanggaman Island is just an arms length away, well, almost.

fighting the urge not to jump.
A few meters away from land and something in me keeps pushing me to dive on that clear water. The turquoise water is so inviting that I hurriedly positioned myself on on the tip to get a better look. The wide stretch of white sands glimmering against the radiant beam from the sun; I couldn't help but project my widest yahoo messenger smile.

Lo and behold, Kalanggaman Island. At last!

I didn't actually fly over the island. [I hope I did.] :] found this online.
Kalanggaman or Calanggaman Island, it doesn't really matter. Both names pertain to one single island. Whacky Trivia: Langgam is bisaya for Bird. Kalanggaman means place where there are birds. Probably that's where the island got its name. It's a bird-shaped island located between Cebu and Leyte. It's part of Palompon, Leyte but you can get there from Cebu. If you google it, you'd be surprise with how many hits this island gem has.

I believe there are no permanent residents on the island, except for the caretakers. But I later found out that this was one of the usual stopover for fishermen scouring the seas for some fresh catch. It's also where migratory birds take refuge from harsh conditions before proceeding in their flight plan.

Like wings of a bird, Kalanggaman Island has white sand bars from each end. I noticed a contradicting wave movement on each side - one side, calm and steady; while the other, rough and energetic much like Isla Manoc. I tried to snorkel around but was not able to find lush greens underwater. All I found were sand dollars, white fishes and fast-moving white sea urchins-like bottom feeders. I probably have to paddle farther to get a better view.

facing the rougher waters.
silent but deadly still waters.
that fast-moving sea urchin. IDK the name.


There was 2 signs prohibiting visitors to swim beyond that marker. But we noticed that a lot of tourists swam beyond the boundary. To be safe, we asked permission from the caretaker and got a 'go' signal as long as we be very careful. :]

mandatory jumpshot # 1.
..hanging around under the summer heat.
We tried to circumnavigate the island foot and took us about 15 minutes. I noticed that one side of the island facing Cebu has slabs of rocks squattered. This was also the side where waves are a bit rough. The other side facing Leyte has a long stretch of  white sand beach-break but has a small rocky portion.

..the opposite side of the docking area.

another sand bar.

Went back to our station through a beaten path.

Found this odd-looking kind of fruit. Not even sure if they're edible.

thinking. scheming..

I was surprised to see many outrigger boats from Palompon and neighboring islands docked on shore. I thought part of the island's beauty is its isolation. But then again, it is summer so I can't expect students and families not to be here. It was just disheartening how some tourist neglect their responsibility to keep the place clean from human waste. I'm not talking about turd, just to be clear.

3:30PM. It was time to leave the island. We need to get back to the mainland as some of us are going back to the city that same day. Seeing Kalanggaman Island in the distance made me realize how lucky we are to have a lot of island bounties. Bid the bird island goodbye with a promise of my return. Next time with my beach bum friends.

But the trip didn't end there! I did mention something about Malapascua Island, right?

Whacky Thoughts:
I suggest stacking on some supplies and camp overnight on the island to experience the sunset. Let me know how it went. Ayt? :]

Uber thank you to:
Osang and EWIT Mountaineering Group for squeezing us in your boat arrangements. :]
Jammylat for her snaps and Sir Ice of EWIT for some pic grabs.

Whacky Notes:

Cala-Kalanggaman Island Hullabaloo
Geting to Kalanggaman Island.


Whacky Kid: What's your favorite song?

Diego and Whacky Kid.

This is an actual conversation of my 4-year old son, Whacky Kid, with his 5-year old cousin, Diego, on one tricycle ride back home.

Diego: Aqui, unsa imong favorite song? (Aqui, what's your favorite song?)
Whacky Kid: Teach me how to doggy.

Diego: Ako pd! (Me too!)
Whacky Kid: (sings) Teach me how to doggy. Teach me how to doggy. A-marista. A-ma. A-marista.

Diego: Hala, kahibaw lageh ka! (Wow, how did you know?)

Kids. :]


Isla Manoc: The chicken-less island

on a pinhole.
We were all prepping up to get into beach bum mode when Ate Jennifer [local] approached us and told us to try going to this remote island between Cebu and Masbate. I was about to check with my friends if they want to go but before I can say another word, I saw very big affirming smiles. So off we go to Isla Manoc [later found out what the correct name of the island is as we heard her saying 'Isla Lamanok'].

pia aka mama pig.

Up until now, I'm still not sure whether the island is called 'Manoc' or 'Manoc-manoc'. I'm having difficulties finding an online reference that would put the confusion to rest. What I know is that it's between Masbate and Cebu. One thing remains sure, we heard Ate Jocelyn [local] wrong. We thought the island was called 'Lamanok Island'. Fail. 
So we popped into one of smaller outrigger boats primarily used for fishing and off we go to Isla Manoc [Manoc Island]. Ate Jocelyn was kind enough to make these arrangements with her neighbor.

the cast.
Isla Manoc is composed of 2 islands connected by a shallow sand bar. According to the boatman,  the name came from the islands' figure. From a far, it looks like 2 chickens facing each other. He said, one is the cock [not the cock you're thinking, perv!] and the other, the hen. Another version also talked about hearing chicken crows in the island on midnight. ~Eerie. Note, the island is has no permanent residents due to the scarcity of fresh water so I don't think you can find any chicken roaming, scratching for food.

The islands are located in the Visayan sea, in between Masbate and Cebu. It serves as a temporary shelter for tired fishermen and migratory birds. It's around 45 minutes from Carnaza. The ride's a bit rough but I think it's because we were on a small boat.

The hen.
The hen.
The cock.

Interesting enough, one side of the island has rough waves crashing the sandbar while the other has calm and nearly steady waters. The sand isn't very fine. It's composed of broken down corals. So walking barefooted could become a bit challenging. [Learned it the hard way.]
rough on the right. calm on the left.

rough on the left. calm on the right. [view from the cock island]
lab-lab time.
practicing tsunami walk.

We simmer the hours and the sun's heat with glimmering sounds  of laughter and awe. We grilled the 2 kilos of fish we bought earlier that day, snorkeled like our first time and swam like kids on a kiddie pool. Saying we had fun is an understatement.

farrah aka bb pig..

Around 1:00PM, we decided to go to another island, Isla De Gato. I'm not sure how much time it'll take for us to get to the island. I was out to charge myself for another set of fooling around. On the way, we passed by the other side of the island. We were amazed with the rock formation and white sand shorelines tucked in between. I saw a spot with a long stretch of shoreline and suddenly thought of just stopping by to explore the area. Unanimously, we decided to just spend the rest of the day there.

mind play: a cat and a turtle.
on the way to Isla De Gato. sun-bathing or sleeping? 
Pit Stop.
It turned out to be a very good decision as we were able to harvest bags of edible sea urchins locally known as swaki.
4:00PM. We decided  to go back to base camp to witness the sunset. Off went our boat with restless spirits still bagging with us our fresh catch.

Ended the day with a spectacular view of the sunset over a cliff beside our base camp. It was like orange, yellow, blue and violet ink was splashed across the sky.

Whacky Thoughts:
Sometimes, taking sound decisions together or by majority can yield unexpected good results. It's best to take everyone's choice into consideration as a sign of respect of individual diversity. Just as long as everyone stands by one decision, nothing can go wrong. [I hope. :D] \m/

Budget Breakdown:
Island Hopping. Boat Rental - 800.00
2 kilos of fish for lunch - 160.00
Afternoon snacks (swaki) - Free!
Entrance Fee - Free!

Roger/Neli Recla via Hazel Recla Beloria - 0929.718.9927

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