Pamilacan Island, a small island just 12.5 kilometers across the sea from Baclayon in Bohol, has been an elusive destination, not because it vanishes into thin air, but because I could never recruit enough number of friends to join me on a trip. To get there, one has to charter a pumpboat which is too expensive if traveling alone (unless it's a Wednesday when the residents of Pamilacan go to the mainland for market day, then one could try his luck in getting a ride with them when they go back home to Pamilacan Island).
I finally sailed to Pamilacan Island on a windy December with six recruits: my officemates. We had hired a boat through Shirley's Cottage where we will be staying for the night.
0948 129 0167 / 0908 813 8062
For Php 900 per person for accommodation and three meals, it was a good deal.
The room was clean and simple and had the necessities: a bed, an electric fan (though electricity is from 5PM until midnight only), sockets (to plug in your gadgets...when there was electricity), and a toilet and bathroom (though you have to get water from their tank out back). Shirley had one cottage with two rooms; each room could accommodate two comfortably. Since we were seven in the group, she offered tents that we could use at no extra charge, but by the end of the day, we were too lazy to set it up and just squeezed in 4 or 3 in a room (an extra mattress was provided in each room so that each room could sleep up to four).
The right–hand side room
The food was delicious and plentiful. There was fresh fish, fresh fruits, fresh coconut juice! The meals were always all ready even when we weren't. They even prepared snacks (which I didn't expect)!
The family who runs this place is very nice, friendly, and accommodating. They have two boats that they use for the boat transfers and boating trips for their guests: Php 1500 for the small boat (up to 8 pax) for transfers to and from the mainland; Php 2500 for the bigger boat. For boating (dolphin watching and snorkeling), since we availed of transfers, she only asked us to add Php100 per person. This doesn't include snorkel and mask though, so you either have to bring your own or rent one (they will know where to rent one in the island).
We started early for dolphin watching (but I didn't get to take any good photos or videos) then came back to the cottage for breakfast before heading out again to go snorkeling at the coral garden and marine sanctuary.
Aside from boating, snorkeling, and swimming, our short overnight stay was spent enjoying the breeze, eating, sleeping, talking, and checking out and taking note of the other accommodations. Aside from Shirley's Cottage, these are the five other options:
Nita's Nipa Huts
0921 320 6497 / 0930 898 6063 / 0919 408 9323
0918 258 4775 / 0929 970 4175
Junior and Nemesia's Cottages
0919 419 4684 / 0919 717 8030 / 0915 716 5325
0946 249 1748 / 0919 730 6108
0927 982 1350I did not get to take a photo of the cottages in Liwayway sa Bohol but it looked to be the newest and most expensive of the half dozen choices in the island.