The farther, the better?
I’m beginning to think that the best destinations in the Philippines are located in the farthest areas. Batanes is at the northernmost of the country, Northern Samar at the East, Palawan at the West, Gumasa, Saranggani at the South and Mati City, Davao Oriental tucked at the south easternmost of Mindanao. The list of beautiful places goes on but I want to share to you an island not known to many.
The Picturesque Island of Waniban
So much for Boracay and Camiguin. Waniban Island (some call it Huaniban) is found in the Pujada Bay, Mati City, Davao Oriental. An island so small (only 4 hectares) surrounded turquoise sea, you can explore in less than 30minutes just by walking.
The island is so soooo stunning, its white sand are like the powder that highschool girls put on their faces. At the north western part of the island is an area great for snorkeling. Do not be fooled by the crashing waves because the water is calm below, just perfect for some free diving.
I just saw some trash like emptied alcohol bottles left by some tourist which is so bad.
When doing an island hopping tour, Waniban is a perfect spot for barbeque or beach bumming.
How to get there?
I was able to visit the island because I was tagged by Kurtis who will be offering some tours to Mati City from Davao. I was with Mati City’s Mayor’s brother and Poi Trocio during the island hopping tour. This happened during Day 12 of my Mindanao Challenge 400.
(Extra: Puting Bonbon is said to be a sanctuary of sharks and turtles. I’m the only one from the group who happen to reach the sandbar, I swam about 200meters from our boat and the waves and current below are crazy strong.)
From Mati City downtown you can rent a motorcycle (habal-habal) going to Taganilao (Php50/head or Php100-150/pakyaw). When you arrive at Taganilao, look for Bong Linsag (0912-5862-218). Mang Bong is the caretaker of the Waniban island.
He will arrange for an out-rigger boat transfer from Taganilao – Waniban (Php300/2-3pax; Php500/4-8pax).
There is no store in the island so if you are going to camp, do bring your own food. You can also buy some fish from Mang Bong, cooking fee is Php50. I suggest you call him in advance, should you plan to visit the island. Tell him I told you about him.
Cottage Rental: Php500
You can also camp, pitch a tent at Php100/tent.