A day of water in calm sea and pool – 03.25.22
Came across this island when I was Googling for places to see in Negros Oriental. It is just my kind of beach and the fact that it is not as known as the other sites excited me.
The island, although actually, it is peninsula, is a strip of white sand in between the towns of Zamboanguita and Siaton. There is some sort of controversy surrounding this place as the Internet says these two municipalities are both claiming ownership of this gem.
From Zamboanguita market, I looked for a motorbike driver to take me there. I found one who could not understand Filipino that we were having a hard time understanding each other. Quite funny but glad that we aligned on three words then: the cost, the time he was supposed to come back for me and where he needs to drop me off. I had to make sure we were on the same page with the latter because I have read that while boats can take you there, it is also accessible by foot through a small barangay.
I’s quite far from the market – about 30 minutes I suppose? And I don’t think there are public transport getting there. I was dropped off at a spot with mangroves and rocks. I just had to survive the pretty sharp rocks and there I was in the beach area.
I was walking a certain way but my gut kind of told me I was going towards the wrong direction. Luckily, I spotted a lady in one of the resorts and asked her the way to the islands. True enough, I was going the opposite direction. I pivoted and then went towards the right end.
When I arrived, I shared the island with a small group of people. I have a weirdly upset stomach that I couldn’t enjoy the place as much but the first thing I did was walk towards the edge of the sandbar. I stopped eventually though when I saw this dark-tentacled jellyfish. I immediately went back to shore and asked the locals whether there are indeed jellyfish in the area and whether those are deadly. They told me that yes, there are and it depends (whether these are deadly).
I couldn’t focus so I knew I had to do something with the stomach situation. When I was relieved, I started to take dips in the water. When I tired, I did my usual walk within the community until shortly before 12 noon when I had to go. For some reason, I could not find the spot where I entered so I was a bit worried. I also realized then I do not even have my driver’s number that I had to rely on his word that he’d come back to get me. Luckily though, he did.
Had a quick bite at the eatery in the market then while I was buying some beer before going to nearby town Siaton, some locals suggested I go to this nearby resort called PURE BEACH. Since I was thinking I probably needed more time to go and actually explore Siaton, I decided to call it off and just go to the nearby resort.
Upon entering, I was welcomed by this friendly dog who had a condition on his thyroid. I was the only guest then and even before getting in, I was told that they would close the resort by 4PM. I quickly scanned the place then when I thought I could spend hours there, I gave it a go. Timing was perfect because I had to be back to Dumaguete City anyway because I planned to leave early in the morning for Dapitan.
My hours at the resort then spent swimming at the pool with APO ISLAND -which I just visited the previous day – in the background. Quite a perfect way to end this leg in Dauin.
Guide to Turtle Island
Ride a tricycle and ask to be dropped off at Zamboanguita (it’s slightly farther than Malatapay). At the market, look for motorbike or tricycles that can take you to Turtle Island. It depends on how much you haggle but I paid Php100 per trip. He dropped me off and came back at a certain time to pick me up. This is an ideal set-up if you wish to spend a lot of time in the island.
You do not have to ride a boat as it is accessible via land. Just make sure you tell the driver that that is where you want to be dropped off.If you see an area that is rocky or has mangroves, walk to the right end as that is where the white sand beach / sandbar is. There is a community that lives in the area so do not worry about getting lost as you can always ask around.
Be careful of thorny trees. Walking to the beach area is easy as there is shade from the trees but be careful as these are thorny.
There is no entrance fee and you may bring your own food and beverage.
Water is tide-dependent so if you plan to swim, best to go when it is high tide.
Beware of jellyfish and sea urchins. I saw one with long, dark-colored tentacles around the edge of the sandbar. I asked the local whether it is toxic but they couldn’t answer me straight, saying it depends, so it’s best to be careful. On the left end too, I heard there are sea urchins.