My 3D2N Vacation Summary: 30 Minutes in White Island, Camiguin

Thanks to Zest Airways’ incompetence, my supposedly CDO-Camiguin-Bukidnon tour was cut by one day. We had purchased a 3D2N tour package from CDO Travel & Tours, but since our flight got delayed by 24 hours, we had to eliminate one item from our itinerary, and we all agreed we had to let go of Bukidnon. Goodbye, zipline!

Upon arriving at Laguindingan International Airport in Cagayan de Oro, we were greeted by our tour guides and private van drivers. We quickly grabbed a take-away lunch and started our 3-hour drive to Balingoan Port, which was our portal to Camiguin. If there was one thing I both loved and hated about our driver, Kuya Mark, it was the fact that he drove like a demon. On one hand, we would get to the port faster. On the other, we would die while listening to his Sunday music—good thing our rented van was extremely comfortable.

When I saw this, I started praying.

Three hours after, we got to the ferry station. A shabby, rusty boat sat there waiting for us—I honestly thought (and prayed) it wasn’t our boat. Apparently, it was.

It took another hour to get to Camiguin Island via Benoni Port. By that time, I was already so impatient with all the rides and transfers. Before actually starting our sight-seeing, the tour guide took us to 4R’s Litson Manok for a buffet lunch consisting of fried chicken, sweet-and-sour fish, chop suey, pancit, and a dish which resembled teriyaki beef. Honestly, I just wanted to buy some chips and proceed with the tour.

breathtaking view from behind 4R's Litson Manok
I thought we were getting these -- but no, we only had fried ones.

one of the rare times I wasn't hungry

Finally, we headed to—drum roll please—another port in Mambajao which would take us to the White Island. Maximum of six people per boat. As we sailed and I saw the Mt. Hibok-hibok in the distance, I began to perk up. It was incredibly beautiful.

our boat to White Island!

my friends, Erick and Michelle

I thought it couldn’t get any better until we actually set foot on White Island. Clear turquoise waters. Blinding white sand. Mt. Hibok-hibok as the backdrop. It was paradise!

There were no trees, huts, stalls, whatsoever in the island—it was just a sand bar which actually changes shape constantly, according to our tour guide, thus earning its nickname, the Alphabet Island. The tides dictate its appearance. I couldn’t properly describe how breathtaking it was to be there. The long trip was worth it!

We ran off in different directions, me staying behind to take pictures before taking a dip into the sea water. I’m not a huge fan of beaches, but this one really took my breath away. Not to mention that since it lacked any facilities, one would surely visit it just to appreciate its sheer, scenic beauty (No wild parties! You can BYOB though!).

Out of nowhere, the tour guide shouted, “GROUP PICTURE!” and my friends who were already swimming started to return to the shore. I was still perfectly dry that time, so without changing to my board shorts I jumped into the water! I still had a belt on! Hahaha!

can you spot my belt? Haha!

More pictures followed, like the mandatory jump shots …

I'm always competitive when it comes to these things. LOL
 … mermaid/feeling-like-a-model shots (LOL) …

… spreadeagle shots...

...and of course, the beach shots!

Erick and Mt. HIbok-hibok

"swaki" or sea urchin

After some time, the tour guide shouted again, “TIME TO LEAVE!” and I wanted to hurl my camera onto his face.

I can’t believe we didn’t even stay for a hour in White island, but due to the wonderful itinerary that they crafted, we were running out time and we had to move on to our next stop. We just arrived and we were already running out of time—can you think of a more awesome predicament?

When we got back to the main island, the student organizer was asking everyone to choose between Sunken Cemetery and Katibawasan Falls, announcing as well that there wasn’t enough time left to do both. I wish I had a flamethrower; I had lots of bright ideas on how to use it at that moment. I was too spent to say anything though, I just looked at  the souvenirs and shirts being sold at the nearby shops while they argued, which lasted unbelievably long.

knickknacks from the souvenir shops

The ending? We went to Ardent Hot Spring, because it was the nearest one from the port and because we had to catch the last boat back to CDO by 5pm and because majority of the people with me didn’t have heaters, kettles, or hot showers in their homes.

Pardon my bitterness, but this really was the worst vacation ever.


Other blogs in the "CDO-Camiguin Series":

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