My friends still had half the day to spare and so decided to go to Hidden Beach, but not before stopping by the market, located halfway between Bojo River and Hidden Beach, for a quick lunch. I had to be back in the city by 4PM, but still I agreed to tag along for a look–see of the beach I had last seen more than a decade ago.
I had been to Hidden Beach in college, in the name of education (we had to measure depths at different points and create a topographic map), but mostly just so we could have an outing (we'd do the required activities as fast as we could and spend the rest of the day like wild animals). The highway to Aloguinsan then was rough and dusty. When we reached the point along the highway nearest where the beach was, we had to hike (about a kilometer) barefoot through mud (making the kilometer seem like five) just to get to Hidden Beach, a beach so aptly named....back then.
Today, no hiking necessary, just tell the habalhabal driver to take you to not-so-Hidden Beach, and he'd drop you off in front of the entrance where the following fees are collected: entrance fee Php 15 per person; table rental Php 150; cottage rental Php 300.
That weekday holiday brought in many people to Hidden beach. All cottages were taken and we took ownership (after paying the fee) of the last available table. The tide was in and, despite common sense telling us to stay under the shade as it was high noon, our legs marched us into the water. We didn't have to walk too far on the sandy bed for the water to reach our necks.
Fingers not at all wrinkled, I had to drag myself out and bid goodbye to my friends who, enviously, had the rest of the afternoon to soak in the water.
I spent more time in the bus than in Bojo River and Hidden Beach combined. Next time, it shall be the other way around.
You might want to know: Hidden Beach has a shower/changing area. But you have to pay Php 10 for a bucket of water.
A little story: I found no motorcycles for hire at the parking area of Hidden Beach. I sat under a tree, debating whether to walk to the highway—it was scorching—or to wait. While the battle in my head went on, I saw a shiny white van slowly move out of the parking area. I quickly walked towards it and asked the driver for a ride to the highway. Kind Mr Teban let me hop in his new van with the AC on at a cool and comfortable temperature (take that scorching summer sun!). We got to talking during the short ride and I found out that he drives for his uncle's van rental business. For whoever needs to rent a van around Cebu, contact Mr Teban at 0915 920 3334.
Hidden Beach (you're here!)
How speeding through Aloguinsan sped through Mustachio's wallet:
Bus, Cebu to Aloguinsan Php 80
Habalhabal to Bojo River Php 20
Bojo River tour Php 400
Habalhabal Bojo River to market to Hidden Beach Php 40
Hidden Beach entrance fee Php 15
Hidden Beach table rental Php 150
Habalhabal to Pinamungahan Php 50
Bus, Pinamungahan to Cebu (aircon Ceres bus) Php 100