She was beckoned to a place away from the life she has been living. She knew what her soul has been craving for and now she was free from any inhibitions, free from the maddening crowd and released from the trapped life she secretly hates.
She was just wanting to go out, because that was the only time she would know herself, and in that time she got to be she.
Thoughts like these were floating in my mind as I stepped on the land of Samar for the first time. Yes I was in the state of bliss because I got to wander out again, enjoy my freedom even for just a limited time.
And I’m chasing potatoes in ” drumroll” in Capul Island.
BITS OF FACTS ABOUT CAPUL ISLAND
Capul Island was obviously touched by Spanish culture leaving remnants of Spanish history as a bridge to the modern era. Setting foot in this island is like a blast from the past. It is one of the hundred heritage islands in the Philippines which are preserved and maintained.
Another thing that makes Capul unique is its distinct language called Inabaknon, instead of Waray-Waray, the native language of the locals of Samar.
Take this as an example of their dialect.
17 UNTRADEABLE THINGS TO DO, WHERE TO GO AND WHAT TO EXPECT
1. Be Amazed With Sanbungto Beach
Sangbunto is the docking place of the boats from Allen Port, Samar. Upon disembarking from the boat, one could clearly notice the white pebbled sand in the beaches, the gentle waves of the blue waters ( if the weather is fine ) and the relaxing and peaceful tropical vibe.
Looking at the photo above, who wouldn’t love to dip in that refreshing blue sea? It’s quiet and quaint, perfect for having a relaxing vacation away from the chaotic crowd in the city. This is definitely one for the books on tropical destination.
2. Stroll Around the Town
While walking toward the place where we would stay, I spied with my little eye, this house. The two-storey structure is built of brick and wood, the exterior walls of the upper storey are enclosed by window panels of shells framed in wood which can be slid back for better ventilation. The structural design of the house is obviously of Spanish influence. Even though it had been retouched and repainted, the antique architectural figure of the house is conspicuous.
This island is not just a simple tropical island but an island of many stories to tell including the story of Spanish colonization of the Philippine Islands.
3. Take a Bath at Bañadero Nature Spring
Anyway, as stated in the signage above, Bañadero is almost 3 centuries old. Capul Island is blessed to have brimming resources including this nature spring.
4. Visit the Lighthouse of Capul
5. Climb the Top of the Lighthouse
Standing at the top of the lighthouse, looking at the panoramic view of Capul Island and its neighboring Islands, sensing the fresh and clean breeze from the sea, listening to the melody of nature in this pacific place, a nature lover cannot help but admire this breath-taking and amazing experience that a snap of a selfie becomes imperative. Can you spot that marine vessel in the photo? That is a cruise ship sailing around the world and making a stopover at Capul Island. You see, this beautiful island had already been recognized by international folks. Amazing, isn’t it?
6. TIime Travel to the Past
The lighthouse was not just intended for viewing but it also serves as a watchtower so that the guards would be warned against their enemies. A few meters from the slope of the main building, you can find the three circular Japanese World War II gun emplacements. The area was once full of huge guns. Historically, Capul Island was invaded by the Spaniards and also by the Japanese. The island also witnessed the sufferings and strife of the Filipinos during the world war. I wonder how the locals endured their sufferings at that time.
7. Be Awed with the View
The Parola in Capul delivers a picturesque scene of nearby islands and one of these is the picture below, This is a view of the magnificent volcano, Mt Bulusan in Sorsogon. What make this volcano more interesting is that it has two craters, truly a sight to behold. How cool and awesome would it be to climb a volcano! Is that possible?
Aside from that, tourists also enjoy observing the current of the water coming from San Bernandino Strait. Can you see that white foamy line on the water, it is the current flowing in opposite directions towards each other. The wave line seems to be the battle of the currents. Which direction will win?
Based on my observation, the winners are the fishermen. They take advantage of the current to catch fish. The fish may have been trapped in the middle of the battle of the currents and they may have a hard time to swim away from the strong force of the waves. Correct me if I’m wrong.
9. Climb Down from the Cliff of Parola
9. See the Different Rock Formations
There are many sights to see below, among them are the different rock formations. My fave is this small rock–rimmed pool shaped like a footprint. The locals call this the Bigfoot.
According to folklore, Bigfoot was the imprint of a giant who stepped on the rock surface. That giant must have taken BMC (Basic Mountaineering Course) for he followed the norm of not leaving anything but footprints. Haha! 😛 😀
10. Mingle with the Locals
Watching sunset is one spectacular activity in Parola in Capul. The blazing golden colors that spread the horizon with the setting sun made Capul look like a postcard-picture of an island paradise.
Watching sunset is so peaceful that you would desire to view it forever and stop the sun from disappearing from the horizon. That’s one good thing in taking along a camera. You can capture the ephemeral moment and make it a memory of a lifetime. So here’s my lifetime memory of watching this beautiful sunset. And then my friends and I bought halu-halu to have more splendid time mesmerizing the sight of the remaining sun rays gradually sinking down the horizon.
12. Stop Over at Barangay Oson
The following day, we decided to go to Alisampan. We took a habal-habal for this trip.
One advantage in riding a habal-habal is viewing the scenery almost 360 degrees. So upon riding it, we noticed this wave-like rock formations. This is not included in our itinerary but we requested the habal-habal driver to stop, so that we could take a look and satisfy our curiosity.
The rock formations were amazing. I just made a theory that maybe millions of years ago the current of the waves here flowed in one direction and molded those rocks into wave-like shapes. ( Please tell me if my theory is right or wrong.)
You could not afford to leave this place without taking some pictures.
13. Ride a Boat to Alisampan
Though Alisampan is part of Capul Island, it is accessible only by riding a boat. I was really awed by the scenery offered by the boat ride to Alisampan. The unspoiled water was crystal clear making the corals and fishes visible. The view of Capul island with wide stretches of sand is just breathtakingly beautiful.
14. Explore around Alisampan
Alisampan delivers an unspoiled water perfect for skinny dipping and swimming and numerous corals and marine animals ideal for snorkelling. Just make sure you have your snorkelling gears because there are no gears for rental there. Anyway, anywhere you look in Alisampan is just instragrammably worthy. The comeliness of the surroundings will definitely attract people to immerse in there. Furthermore, there’s no entrance fee. You can truly enjoy your escape with nothing to worry about your budget. This is truly a paradise for budgetarian people. Haha! Cool… Isn’t it?
15. Have a Cliff Jump in Alisampan
The rock that is separated from the island is kind of creepy because of what I discovered there. I swam towards it and upon reaching, I saw lots of webs and spiders that almost covered every side of the rock. And then I saw a snake skin at a nook. The sight made me go back in haste because it signified that there were lots of harmful creatures there. Those protected wild creatures gave me a warning that no human should pass that way. Maybe some mystical beings inhabit that place. With that, I did not pursue exploring the place and decided to leave it in peace.
17. Visit the Church
Capul Island is rich in heritage and culture. One of the heritage sites is the Capul Church, a fortress church built by the Jesuits in the 18th century in honor of San Ignacio de Loyola and renovated by the Franciscans in the 19thcentury. Its presence is a symbol of how people defended themselves against the pirates during the Spanish colonial period. It has withstood the passage of time. It reminds us of the richness of our history and culture.
18. BONUS moment. Watch sunset in Sanbungto Beach.
Another amazing sunset here in Capul is in Sangbunto beach. It was an extraordinary view for me because on that clear day, I saw two volcanoes, MT. MAYON in Albay and Mt. Bulusan in Sorsogan. What a lovely sight! How amazing it was to watch two majestic volcanoes in just one view. Whew!!!
HOW TO GET THERE?
Take a ship from Cebu to Calbayog. The traveling time is about 10 hours more or less. Note: The ship’s schedule is M-W-F only, not everyday. ( Calbayog to Cebu is T-Th-S) After arriving at Calbayog Pier, ride a jeepney for 2 hours to Allen Terminal. Then ride a trike just for a few minutes to Allen Port. Ride a motorboat for 1 hour to Capul Island. Note: only one boat will go to Capul Island every day and the schedule is 11:00 o’clock A.M.
WHERE TO STAY?
I recommend Auntie Felly’s Place. I think this place is perfect for tropical staycation. The place is cozy, home-like and very clean. It has no air-conditioned rooms but the rooms have natural ventilation making your stay cool. It offers delicious food. I tell you the food is yummier than lutong bahay and the price is very affordable, making your stay very worthwhile.
ESTIMATED EXPENSES FOR THIS CAPUL TRIP
- Tip No. 1 – The signal for networks in the town of Capul is not strong but by the beach and parola the signal is quite strong for some networks. Just bring two or more sims and check which network has strong signal.
- Tip No. 2 – Electricity is scheduled from 4:00 o’clock P.M.to 12:00 o’clock midnight only, so better bring powerbank and camera batteries for back ups.
- Tip No. 3 – If the weather is not so fine, your boat has to cross the treacherous water in going to Capul Island.
- Tip No. 4 – Capul has a lot of things to offer like caving in case you like to have extreme adventures.
- Tip No. 5 – Since Alisampan is rich in marine natural resources be extra careful on what you step on the water, you might damage some corals or you might step on sea urchins.
- Tip No. 6 – Respect the people’s culture and respect the place by not throwing garbage anywhere.
- Tip No. 7 – The only mode of transportation in Capul Island is Habal – habal.
Here’s the video of our Capul Tour
Thank you so much Ate Rhea for touring us to your beautiful island, Kat and family for your warm hospitality and accommodation and Ate Chen for the enjoyable and jovial company.