Guimaras' Alubihod Beach
Iloilo and Guimaras are provinces located in the Western Visayas Region. Guimaras is an island located few minutes boat ride away from Iloilo City, that's why most of traveler's route is to visit Guimaras Island as well when they are in Iloilo City. I only have few days to spare, gladly I was able to visit the places I wanted to see.
clouds outside our plane window
Iloilo City From Airport | Getting to Iloilo | How To Get To IloIlo | Transportation to Iloilo
Iloilo International Airport is the airport serving the general area of Iloilo City, the capital city of the province of Iloilo and the regional center of the Western Visayas region in the Philippines.(see wikipedia for more info)
From Iloilo International Airport, the cheapest way to get to downtown city is to ride a public utility van that will get you to SM City Iloilo. This only costs Php 50 per passenger and travel time is about 30 minutes. From SM City Iloilo, you may opt to ride a jeepney or a taxi depending on your destination.
TIP: As soon as you get out of the airport there are numerous drivers/barkers looking for passengers from airport. Asked how much is the fare rate per passenger before getting their service just to be sure they are not a crook or something. :)
It was a cheap transportation from the airport, I was impressed that Iloilo City has public vans available for transport. How I wished airports in Manila has public van transportation too to reach malls closer to our residential city. Anyway, we took our lunch inside SM City Iloilo before going to Guimaras.
How To Get To Guimaras | Transportation to Guimaras
I have already mentioned that Guimaras is few minutes boat ride from Iloilo. From SM City Iloilo we took a cab ride to Ortiz Wharf. Fare is less than Php 100. Fare of public pump boat to Guimaras is really cheap for Php 14/passenger one way. Travel time of the boat ride is around 15 minutes only.
Ortiz Wharf, Iloilo City
Pump Boat with life vest
the view, stilt houses along the way
Guimaras Island is wonderful province with lots of places to see. Also, the province is well known for producing one of the sweetest mango so one should try it during its season.
There are two ways to explore the island:
*by land to discover tourist spots along the way - via trycicle or multicab (jeepney like vehicle) or your own vehicle
*by boat for some island hopping experience
We weren't able to contact any tricycle driver to tour us around prior our visit. As soon as we get off the pump boat from Iloilo we took one from a lot of tricycle drivers waiting at the port. It's around mid afternoon, so we only have few hours left to tour Guimaras. Our plan is to visit some places along the way before going to the resort.
First Stop : Smallest Plaza
Kuya Totong, our trike driver made a stop at the Smallest Plaza. It is along the highway and he said this plaza once became world record for being the smallest plaza. He also said it is Jose Rizal in the statue when he was younger. We took some pictures and then went to our next destination.
Second Stop: Trappist Monastery
Trappist Monastery is quite a peaceful place run by monks following rules of St. Benedict. It is a good place to pray, as well as talking with monks and praying with them (for Catholics).
Trappist Monastery is also famous for their wonderful mango products made by monks, their way to earn for a living. I suggest you try their mango bars, quite pricey around Php 80-90 per pack but tastes heavenly haha. What they sell here are great food products you don't want to miss. :)
Third Stop: Valle Verde Mountain Spring Resort
Our driver brought us to Valle Verde Mountain Spring Resort. The spring pool looks inviting as it is surrounded by lush green scenery. The place has a great overlooking view near their restaurant. We don't have plans of swimming yet for our first day so we just gave a small fee for exploring the area.
Fourth Stop: Raymen Beach Resort
One of the resorts along Alubihod in Guimaras is Raymen Beach Resort. We're supposed to book a different resort far from here but because we will go on island hopping tour the next day and we're on a tight budget, it would be cheaper if we share expenses. I already talked to someone from gt forum prior the trip and she agreed her friends (she's supposed to come too but cancelled her trip) will be doing the island hopping the next day with us. :)
Raymen Beach Resort has a restaurant where you can eat. They also have open cottages for daytrips too. Anyway, we took their fan room as we don't have enough budget to avail their aircon room. I just asked the receptionist to let me take a photo of their aircon room too for your options. :)
Raymen Beach Resort's fan room - for our overnight stay
Raymen Beach Resort's aircon room
Our first day ended well, and we were up for island hopping the next day. We ate our dinner in their restaurant because I don't know if there are other place to go to eat.
Check my Iloilo-Guimaras Series!