A visit to Olango Island makes a good alternative if you’re tired of the usual beach-hopping around Mactan and beyond.In fact, you can make this trip for a little under 500 pesos per person.Olango is quite known for being a bird watcher’s paradise and for their marine sanctuary. The birds already left when we arrived close to noon but my daughter and I enjoyed our mini-trip just the same.
I would call the Olango trip as my first real adventure with my 5 year old daughter Lucia. We rode three means of transport: tricycle, motorcycle and outrigger boat. In return, she called it her ‘greatest field trip ever!’ I was glad to know since I was really aching to show her parts of the Philippines that’s different from what she sees in the city 🙂
In going to Olango, our tricycle dropped us off in the port near the newly developed Mactan Newtown by Megaworld. I only paid 12 pesos and my daughter six pesos for the boat that would take us to Olango.
It was a huge outrigger boat but the number of people packed in there made me a bit nervous. The life vests were tied securely on a post and I figured out you can’t remove it easily in the event of an emergency. Ugh.
Lucia didn’t seem to mind. I think she was excited because it’s her first time to set out in a boat in the open sea. The trip took about 20 minutes with a few big waves in between 🙂
Boats, and more boats. This was our first sighting of Olango.It was low tide.
We saw lots of smiling children along the way. I thought there were more kids than wildlife in the island, lol. A lot of them were munching on lollipops because it seems the Korean tourists were fond of giving them.
Our first stop was the marine sanctuary. Fee was P25 per adult. There are a few activities one can do here like swimming, snorkelling, diving, fish feeding and even camping.
We just checked out the place since I’ve had enough of swimming in Oslob the day before. The bamboo walkway was wobbly and seemed to run forever.
At the end of the walk, there was a makeshift bamboo pavilion where one can eat and go on a picnic.
The next stop was the Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary which is a favorite stop for migratory birds such as herons, tattlers and egrets coming from as far as Siberia.
But alas, no more birds when we arrived. I would advise that you go here early to chance upon the bird migration and the best months are from July to November.
Still, we had fun traversing this kilometric boardwalk since we could peer through the small fishes swimming in the water.Lucia was so thrilled at the sight.
By the end of our little tour, it was lunchtime and we were hungry. For tourists, Olango Island only has these floating restaurants on offer. It was a nice touch since we had to be transported to the resto by boat. But I’d advise you to avoid making the stopover since the restos were pricey and didn’t offer quality food.
The view was beautiful though. This island had its own charm.