Thursday, August 18, 2011

Weather-Proof Guimaras


After the grueling boat ride from Iloilo, we finally reached the island province of Guimaras in one piece. We were waiting for the rain to stop when our tour guide/driver/photographer, Kuya Gerald (09084748122), immediately saw us. (We looked like tourists I guess.) We got acquainted and shared our horror about the boat ride with him. Oh by the way, I saw Kuya Gerald's number thru marx, and amongst all the guides in Guimaras, his offer was the cheapest.

The rain stopped after 30 minutes of looking like desperate people in a non-Tagalog speaking place. We have to make a decision whether to continue or cancel the countryside tour. It was drizzling at that time and we pushed through with the said trip. Whew! We comfortably and perfectly fitted on kuya's tricycle. Welcome to Guimaras!


First stop was the smallest plaza. It was indeed a small plaza (But smallest? I dunno). With Jose Rizal in the middle. Plain-looking plaza. It was drizzling at that time.


Next was the "Overlooking area". In this certain spot, one can have a nice view of the province (from the town of Jordan). The sun showed up.


And then we went to Guimaras Adventure Park where you can experience paintball, target shooting, horse riding and rapelling. We didn't try any of the activities, maybe next time. 




Next stop was the Museo de Guimaras. Unfortunately, it was not open to the public due to some renovations going on. But good thing was that they allowed us to peek into the exhibit. Thank you guys!



Guimaras is known for their sweet mangoes. And we wouldn't miss the chance to take a bite of the famous Guimaras mango. And Mango Trade Fair was next on our itinerary, although mangoes were not in season at that time, we still had the chance to visit the fair and bought mangoes for 60 pesos per kilo. Indeed, it was sweet! What more if the fruit was in season right? One cannot bring any mango fruit, seed or seedling inside the Guimaras province from outside sources. This is, I guess, to preserve the quality of their mangoes. 




Next was the Guimaras Provincial Capitol which is in the same area with the Mango Trade Fair.



Then we went to the Pasalubong Center or the Guimaras Trade and Information Center near the Provincial Capitol. It sells souvenir items, t-shirts (there were Island Souvenirs items), handicrafts, preserved foods and other stuff.  



Mango Plantation was next and we stopped at the highway and checked out the vast plantation of mangoes which is controlled by the local government of Guimaras.







The Trappist Monastery is one of the famous religious site and pasalubong center in Guimaras. We saw three monks and one of them even asked us to write our prayer requests in a piece of paper and prayed with us after. The place was so relaxing with pine trees (agoho) lined up into the front and back yards. 

There were also many items to bring back home from their shop. They have their own version of mango barquillos (yummy), mango piaya, mango jam and many more. One thing we noticed was that the monk in the gift shop was somewhat snob. He didn't even smiled. I dunno, or maybe it's just me. Hehe.



Then we went to Valle Verde Mountain Resort for another nice view of the island province. (Entrance fee 10 pesos) It was a bumpy ride going up there. Many foreign tourists were staying at the resort and they were renting motorbikes to explore the province. It was gloomy when we were there.



Camp Alfredo was next. You can do zipline here, high rope obstacle course, hanging bridge, camping, rapelling, and other stuff including a restaurant and soon a resort. 



Alubihod Beach-Raymen beach resort was next. The plan was to check out the beach and Raymen's facilities to compare it to Guisi beach and to other resorts in the area. When we arrived there, it rained again. It was so stormy that we felt like we should stay here for our own safety and end the tour right there and then. 


We ate our lunch in their canteen and saw that there were some guests in the resort in spite of the weather. After that, we checked the Alubihod beach and felt that it was limited. I mean in terms of space. The cove was smaller that I thought it would be. There were nets on the water. But the remarkable thing was their sand was fine and I felt like swimming at that time (even if it's stormy) but I restrained myself.  It was still raining when we decided that it was not the resort for us. So we continued with the tour...

**One thing we've notice in the province is that there were no people hanging around and doing nothing. We barely see some kids playing and grown-ups on the streets. Maybe it's because  we went there on a Thursday and maybe people were working or the kids were still in school. Or because there were few people there.


Being the 7th least populated province in the Philippines, Guimaras is also one of the smallest province in terms of total land area - 604.57 sq.km. It's population in 2010 reached 151,238 and it's population density is roughly estimated to be 250 people per square kilometer. (In Metro Manila it's almost 4,500 per sq.km.)

The weather was so unpredictable. Rain-sun-drizzle-wet-dry. And although we didn't go to Balaan bukid and some falls in the area, it was indeed a very memorable and nice experience to see the gems of the province.**


Kuya Gerald-driver/tour guide/photographer (he also drives multicabs) 09084748122
***Guisi beach and lighthouse will have a separate post.***

Check Guimaras accommodations here

14 comments:

  1. i don't know why but i feel more at home in Guimaras than any other province i've been to in the Philippines. Siguro in my past life, i was born here. Or maybe this life, i was actually born there. I love everything about Guimaras and will forever come back to my home.

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  2. may lukso ng dugo ba?maybe in the future, you might wanna settle in this nice island province:)

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  3. Nii may bilihan pala ng souvenirs jan!? Di kami nakapunta dati sayang!

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  4. meron nga christian! may island souvenirs pa nga na t-shirts eh..may mga ref magnets din..

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  5. hi, ask ko lang po how much yung tour nyo? pwede hingin contact? thanks!

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  6. 1,000 pesos yung tour. that's the cheapest kasi usually 1,300 ang tours na ganyan. mas ok pumunta pag sunny ang weather kasi kami di namin napuntahan lahat kasi umuulan eh. here's the number of kuya gerald our guide - 09084748122. tell him ni refer ka ni "carla" para may discount ka din...enjoy!

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  7. alright i'll contact him. we'll be there on Oct, sana nga di maulan that time.. Thanks so much!

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  8. no worries! enjoy your guimaras trip!

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  9. Hi Ate. :) Best in late ako syempre. Hehe. I was about to ask the contact number. But since you posted it, I won't ask you na. Hehe. Itetext ko si Kuya Gerald ah. Sabihin ko sayo ko po nakuha number niya. :)

    Ask ko din po, mas okay talaga magstay sa Guisi Beach kesa sa Alubihod Beach? :) Thanks po!

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    1. hi chingky..depende pa rin talaga sa trip mo eh, kuya gerald will bring you naman to those two beaches so makakapili ka where you would want to stay :)

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  10. Hi! How much ang charge ni Kuya? Kasya ba kami kung 4 kami? :) Thanks!

    http://www.dekaphobe.com/

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    1. hi michymichy... 1200 daw po ang standard rate sa guimaras so yun din ang kay kuya gerald. pag 4 persons ata pwede na sa multicab kayo pero i dunni if same price rin. madali namang kausap si kuya eh. hehe :)

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  11. Thank you for this post about Guimaras. I will try to reach out to Kuya Gerald when we get there this November. yay!

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