Travel Guide To Caramoan Island

Undeniably, Caramoan is one of the most beautiful islands in the Philippines. It is considered as a first-class municipality with a 4,000- hectare limestone forest and it's land extends into the waters of the Maqueda Channel on the north and east and the Lagonoy Gulf on the south.



According to the 2015 census, Caramoan has a total population of at least 48,000 people. The town is politically subdivided into 49 barangays. Caramoan is bounded on the north by Garchitorena, Camarines Sur and the Philippine Sea; on the north-east by the island province of Catanduanes; and on the west by the municipality of Presentacion, Camarines Sur.
To date, Caramoan remains unexploited from commercial tourism. The island boasts of having perfect white sand beaches, tranquil lakes, deep caves, coves and rich marine life. Survivors, ready?



HOW TO GET TO CARAMOAN ISLAND

OPTION A -- Direct Land Travel
From Manila, ride a bus heading to Caramoan Island. Most bloggers recommend Raymond Transport Bus. I've never tried their service so I have nothing much to say about them yet. Bus terminals operating to Caramoan Island are mostly located in Cubao, Quezon City; Pasay; and Sampaloc, Manila. Fare is around Php 1,000 per person and the travel time is approximately around 11 to 12 hours.

For faster and more convenient experience, choose an air-conditioned bus. Boat transfer is no longer needed just in case you choose this option. Mas tipid to, bes!

OPTION B -- Naga City to Caramoan Island
From Naga City, head to Naga Central Bus Terminal then ride a bus heading to Caramoan Island. Bus operators include Florencia Bus, MRR and Raymond Transit. Fare is around Php 250 per person. Travel time is around 3 to 4 hours. Please be mindful of the bus schedules: 3:00 AM; 6:00 AM; 9:00 AM; 12 NN; 2:30 PM; and 3:00 PM daily.

OPTION C -- Via Plane to Naga City
Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific Air has direct flights to Naga City. Travel time is around 45 minutes. 

OPTION D -- Manila to Catanduanes to Caramoan Island
The easiest way to get to Caramoan Island is through a plane bound to Virac, Catanduanes. Only Cebu Pacific Air operates to Virac. Travel time is around 45  to 55 minutes. Then, ride a tricycle heading to Codon Port. Travel time is around 30 minutes. Once you reached Codon, hire a bangka heading to Guijalo Port of Caramoan Island. Travel time is around 30 minutes.


PLACES TO VISIT IN CARAMOAN ISLAND
  • MATUKAD ISLAND -- Of all the small islands in Caramoan, Matukad Island is the most photographed. Visit this island early in the morning to get yourself an Instagram-worthy photo. You will surely enjoy the beauty and serenity of the island. Matukad has the most popular limestone cliffs where most tourists climb, overlooking a beautiful lagoon. At the top of the cliff, you'll be mesmerized because of the breathtaking views of the sea including its nearby islands. Amazing, right?
  • LAJOS ISLAND -- Lajos Island is one of the nearest islands from the jump off. It is one of the most visited islands in Caramoan. The beach here is incredibly beautiful. It has fine, white sand. Couples, this island has the perfect spot for a pre-nuptial photo shoot. Swear!
  • TINAGO ISLAND -- As the name implies, Tinago Island is hidden to most people visiting Caramoan. New and young boatmen doesn't aware that this island exist. This cove is concealed from the view when you traverse the lenght of Caramoan peninsula. It is also accessible from the sea through a narrow passageway between two limestone mountains. The water leading to the narrow passageway is quite rough. Serenity is waiting for you here.
  • HUNONGAN COVE -- Hunongan Cove, facing the Pacific Ocean, is being surrounded by heavily forested cliffs. This is the perfect spot if you want privacy, peace of mind, and serenity. 
  • Other places to visit in Caramoan includes Tayak Lagoon; Minalahos Island and Cave; Our Lady of Peace at Mount Caglago-Tabgon; Sabitang Laya Island; Bag-ing; Pitogo Island; Cotivas Island; Lahuy Island; Bugtong Beach; and Manlawi Beach. If you're staying longer in Caramoan, for sure, your tour guides will tell you more about the beautiful places that aren't listed here yet. 

WHERE TO STAY IN CARAMOAN ISLAND

TUGAWE COVE RESORT
Brgy Colongcogon, Colongcogong, Caramoan



CASITA MIA BED & BREAKFAST
Brgy ILI-Centro, Malabog, Caramoan



LA CASA ROA HOSTEL
Teoxon St., Tawog, Malabog, Caramoan


THE CENTRAL DISCOVERY HOTEL
109 Paz Street, Malabog, Caramoan



WEST PENINSULA VILLAS
San Andres, Salnopan, Malabog, Caramoan



OTHER ACCOMMODATION CHOICES
  • VILLA JULIANA INN; 0921 226 1395; 0929 488 4928; 0907 655 7984
  • REX TOURIST INN; 0919 882 1879; 0919 308 9675
  • CMC VILLA CARAMOAN; 0906 420 5644; 0920 903 0226
  • CARAMOAN KAYAKS INN; 0921 987 3157; 0920 474 2637
  • BC HOMETEL TOURIST INN; 0927 402 7220; 0921 835 7454
  • GOTA VILLAGE RESORT; +632 8170831; +632 7109086; 0928 308 3969
  • RIVER VIEW VACATION INN; 0908 865 5322; 0919 395 5743
  • CARAMOAN BED & DINE; 0920 476 8619; 0915 826 8563; 0920 476 8577
  • GOLDEN HUB TOURIST INN; 0908 262 6173; 0908 894 8252
  • WOW NA WOW TOURIST INN; 0919 599 9673
  • VISTA DEL MAR CARAMOAN; 0919 813 6766; 0920 281 6362
  • LA PLAYA CAMP & PICNIC GROUNDS; 0920 281 6362; 0918 342 0823; 0919 813 6766
  • SEA BREEZE & WAVES COTTAGES; 0919 831 9497
  • HUNONGAN COVE; 0928 308 3969

TRAVEL BUDGET
  • Bus Fare from Manila to Naga City; Php 700
  • Van Transfer from Naga City to Sabang Port; Php 100
  • Boat Transfer from Sabang Port to Guijalo Port; Php 120
  • Environmental Fee; Php 30
  • Snorkel Rental Fee; Php 150
  • Island Hopping Tour for Two Days; Php 3,500
  • Regular airfare starts at Php 3,500 to Php 4,500; one way
  • Please note that rates and fares varies from time to time



TIPS & THINGS TO REMEMBER
  • Caramoan Island is a long drive so make sure you have enough food and drinks stored at your backpacks
  • Bring your power banks and extra batteries for your smartphones and other gadgets
  • Make sure your dry bags and waterproof pouches and gears are ready
  • Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific Air has direct flights to Naga City
  • Only Cebu Pacific Air operates to Virac, Catanduanes
  • Some islands may not be visited due to Survivor filming
  • Charter a boat for Php 1,500 to Php 4,000; good for six at Bikal Port in Brgy Paniman if you're on a budget
  • Travel with your friends to split the expenses
  • Tricycle fare is around Php 10 per person
  • Most restaurants, lodges and souvenir shops are located at the downtown
  • Most business establishments closes on or before 8 PM everyday
  • The best time to travel to Caramoan is on March until May

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