Breaking News

Travel PH | The Beautiful Islands of Apuao Pequena and Apuao Grande in Mercedes

We have been here before to these islands but we didn't had the time to roam around.  This time, we had lots of time.  Thanks to the Mercedes Tourism Office for showing us the beauty of this island.

Now this time, we had lots of time to go around and we found new wonderful things on the island.

Apuao Pequena.
From the word pequena, means little, this island is smaller compared to its adjacent island Apuao Grande.  Don't under estimate this island as it offers three things which we found to be great for travellers.

First, it has an expanse that is covered with pine trees.  These trees are not local to this islands and welcomes the weary traveler to the island and comforts them.  This place is so quiet and serene, one can hook up a hammock between tress and simply waste the time away.  Cool breezes from the waters add to the effect, relaxing you, lulling you to lala land.

Walking through a forest trail, you can check out the large bats that make this island their home.  You will see them over tree tops dangling from the branches and when you do make a sound, you will startle some of them.  They fly away and you will see their outstretched magnificent bat wings.  Seldom you see bats in the urban areas and when you do see them, they are just the small ones.  Here on this island, they are huge.

The forest trail leads to a ridge at the other side of the island.  After going through a pine forest, then to through the bat sanctuary, you will be greeted with a view of crashing waves.  Wow what a wonderful sight.  There's even a bench on top that one can sit for hours just watching and listening to the waves.  With cool winds from the ocean, truly its an enthralling experience.

Apuao Grande.
Adjoining Apuao Pequena with a permanent sand bar, one can traverse through and reach Apuao Grande.  Grande means big so this is bigger than the former.  This is where one stay over the island as they have a little luxury of staying overnight.  They have the structures and most important thing, an electric generator.

Here we find our accommodation.  Its a former resort owned by Australian locals say.  The foreigner left and the place has been maintained by locals.  It has been improperly maintained for sometime however with the increase in tourism for the area, they are slowly sprucing the place up.  We were glad it was.

Our place had comfy beds and they have electricity running off from generators from 6pm onwards.  The power was heaven sent as we bloggers were taking pictures and videos whole day and most of us are running out of batteries.  We immediately hooked up for recharging our phones, laptops, batteries for the cameras and go pros and powerbanks. LOL.  Even if the power was cut off around 1am, it was enough for us to do the needed recharge.

Now dinner was served by our hosts and true to Camarines Norte hospitality fashion, food was delicious as always.  You can be assured that seafood were fresh and fruits as dessert, just perfect. 

Except for the dreary evening, we were all smiles when we left our rooms and proceeded to the beach after dinner.  It was the only place where a cellular signal was present.  Arriving at the hut near the beach, we saw our hosts drinking.  Filipino hospitality is always present as we were invited to join them.  In as much as I have passion for social drinking as well, most of us declined as we had to leave early the next day.  We might not be able to wake up early should we have indulged that night.

After doing our usual postings in Facebook and Instagram and Twitter, we turned in our beds even though the night was still young.  Tired, happy and full, sleeping was easy. 

Both islands are good for swimming although Pequena had more to offer to an adventurous traveler. 

To reach these islands.
Take a bus from Cubao Terminal via Superlines or DLTB going for Daet Camarines Norte.  Fare should be Php520-650 depending on which type of bus you prefer.  We suggest getting the first class or the lazy boy types.  These buses leave 9pm or 10pm and travel time is 8 hours so you will reach Daet come 5am.  Take a jeep from Daet to Mercedes port and ask around for a boat going to Apuao Grande.

Better yet, coordinate with the Mercedes tourism office which is located within the Mercedes Port.  For more questions, visit their facebook presence here.