I came back last summer of 2014 to Bantayan Island, revisiting the place some months after Yolanda devastated the island. And this time around, I traveled with a group. There were eight of us who went there after our convention in Cebu City. That Friday night, we went to San Remigio and stayed at our colleague’s house. In the morning, we went to Hagnaya Port to bring us to Sta Fe port. We stayed at the side of the ferry and enjoyed the view and breathe of fresh air going to Bantayan Island.
Bantayan Island Beaches
Upon seeing Bantayan Island again, I felt I was home. It saddened me though, that the coconut trees were cut into halves. Other trees were disheveled too. I could still see the effect of Super Typhoon Yolanda within the vicinity of Sta Fe as some houses had broken down.
We went to the town proper of Sta Fe and ate a sumptuous lunch in a restaurant called Coucou Bar Bantayan Island Hotel and Restaurant. There were new restaurants in the area. Restaurants before were located in the resort and there were only some carinderias around. We checked in at the Sta Fe Beach Resort near Sta Fe port. We booked two cottages without aircon, and we split into two. The cottage and the veranda were big enough for us. Our cottage was near the beach, while the other one was at the back.
We headed to the beach front and started enjoying the beach front. We took pictures while waiting for the boat that would take us to Virgin Island or Silion Island. We walked thru the fine sands of Alice Beach towards the boat.
Virgin Island was a secluded area and you need to pay an entrance fee for the day tour. We took pictures and and enjoyed swimming in the beach. We waited until the sunsets from the horizon.
It was already low tide when we got back to our resort. We took a bath and ate at the Island Daddy Dok’s restaurant where we get grilled pork, fish soup and shrimps. We also took some time in the grocery to buy our drink for the night, ice and some snack foods to munch during our drinking session. As we get back to our hotel we drank and shared stories about lives. When we finished drinking, only half of the group decided to take a night swim. We actually didn’t swim but, enjoyed the cold beach water.
We transferred to the beachfront where there were other customers who were also enjoying the night. We were the ones left until past midnight. We already finished our drinks and we headed to the waters where we stayed there for another hour.
The following day, we were already up when the sun rose. Because we were on the east side of the island the view of sunrise was fantastic. After taking pictures of the sunrise, I toured the group in Sugar Beach.
This side was the best hit area during the super typhoon. Some of the resorts where recovering but there were also resorts that were really devastated. We walked from Sugar Beach until we reached the area where we could also see the port.
We went back to Sta Fe Beach Resort where we enjoyed our breakfast before we went back to San Remigio. The next time I visit Bantayan Island, I need to go to the Bantayan town proper and Madridejos. These two municipalities that I haven’t explored yet.
Bantayan Island has been listed as my number two travel destination in terms of beach, food, resorts and people. And I would never get tired of going back. It would always be my comfort zone. My first love. My first ever worthwhile travel. And the reason why I started exploring the archipelago and loving my very own country.