The western part of Balicasag was deserted that day (save for a couple of roosters tied on trees) because of strong winds. In times like this, everyone troops to the eastern end to do business. On other days, it’s the other way around.
Our guide toured us around the government-run Balicasag Island Dive Resort, the lone resort in the island. The property faces the marine sanctuary where tourists usually snorkel. As you can see on the photo, however, even snorkeling would have to be done on the other side (which meant no marine sanctuary for us).
Pretty place even under bad weather, agree? :)
This guy was doing his rounds around the resort, and he was nice enough to pedal along this lane again when we asked (although he did hesitate, saying his bike was too small for him :P).
Hi, we’re finally going snorkeling. :)
Say hello, for the nth time, to our guide Randy, who would have even more appearances in this post. Starting with—
The waters looked cloudy on some parts, making it difficult to see what was underneath.
The corals on clear areas looked good though. Note however that this was the other side of the island, which even our guide admitted doesn’t have as much of the beautiful corals that the marine sanctuary on the other side does.
From this, taken early in the morning—
—to this, just before leaving in the afternoon.
Here’s to foolhardy decisions that go your way anyway. :P
HOW TO GET TO BALICASAG ISLAND:
Panglao Island (to get from Tagbilaran to Panglao, read this).
Balicasag is located 45 minutes away. Those in big groups (6-8 people) may get boats for hire at Alona Beach. Average cost is P3,500 during the high season & P1,800-P2,500 during the low season.
Fresh seafood are sold in makeshift stalls along the beach. You can then have them cooked any way you want. Some charge cooking fees for every type of dish, and this is where you haggle (so haggle hard).
Locals will offer to take you snorkeling at around P300 each. If you’re good enough, you can trim that down to P200 (including mask rental). Fins are at P100, and we spotted underwater compact camera cases for rent as well.
Balicasag has five dive sites and one marine sanctuary, and it’s said to be one of the Philippines’ best places for scuba divers. Place to go, obviously, is Balicasag Island Dive Resort.
TIEZA-managed Balicasag Island Dive Resort offers diving + accommodation packages or day trip scuba packages. Cabins looked nice when we went around. Click on this page for reservations.
Mr. Randy Guivencan
0929 251 2967