Antique is perhaps the last place in the country I would plan on visiting, simply because I didn’t have any idea what was there.
As fate would have it, I was invited by 2Go to sail with them to Caticlan from Batangas and visit this mystical province—yes, not next-door-neighbor Boracay—for three days. Antique intrigued me then, so I signed up for the trip.
Malalison Island, located in the town of Culasi, would turn out to be one of the highlights of this trip, even if the weather wasn’t at its best when we left the port aboard a big fishing vessel (yes, not your ordinary tourist banca, but a humongous, multi-colored fishing boat that looked like it was fishing for mackerel and tuna).
Malalison Island turned out to be a stunner.
It had a long sandbar that stretched across the open seas, and this was where boats to the island would dock. What a grand welcome that would have been on a sunny day.
But for us, it meant this:
Since our boat was too big to dock right next to the sandbar, we had to be transported—some 20 of us—by batch onboard a canoe. It sounds really simple, yes, but the experience was everything but. The waves were really strong and they were cutting against the boat and the canoe. We could have toppled over anytime, the current carrying us away.
That didn’t happen though, and we ended up feasting on fresh seafood courtesy of the locals, as well as all the buko juice we could chug (they can fetch one for you for just P7 each!).
We never got farther than the hall where we had lunch since the weather continued to worsen throughout the day, but it’s worth noting nonetheless that Malalison has hills for trekking and a marine sanctuary for snorkeling and scuba diving.
Two reasons to go back, check!