I used to think about travelling to different places through a plane, boat, bus or car but I never thought of using my bike. When you meet people who also have the same passion for travelling or sports, anything is possible.
My colleagues and I have been biking around Cebu for months until we decided to go to Olango Island, which was the first time for most of us.
The Olango Island Group is a group of islands found in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines. It is composed of Olango Island and 6 satellite islets namely: Sulpa, Gilutongan, Nalusuan, Caohagan, Pangan-an, and Camungi. Olango Island and its neighboring islets has a total land area of approximately 10.3 square kilometres (4.0 sq mi). The island group is under the jurisdiction of the City of Lapu-Lapu and the Municipality of Cordova. The island group is a part of Cebu Province. It lies 5 km east of Mactan Island and a major tourist destination in Cebu. It is known for its wildlife sanctuary. (Wikipedia)
For those who were in Cebu City and in the Mandaue area, we met at Jollibee Highway at 4:30 am where we had our breakfast and then biked to McDonald’s Lapu-Lapu where we met the others. The route from the old bridge to the Hilton Port took about an hour by bike. It was drizzling and we were hoping that it wouldn’t rain hard. We got wet but we still went on.
At the Hilton Port. We almost missed the first trip at 6:30 am. Fare: Php 15 + Php 10 for the bike + Php 5 terminal fee.
The boat to Sta. Rosa Port, Olango.
It was challenging to bring our bikes on the boat.
Bikes in different brands, designs, colors and sizes.
Approaching Sta. Rosa Port. Hilton Port – Sta. Rosa Port: 30 minutes.
If it was challenging to bring our bikes on the boat, it was more challenging to get it off. All thanks to our strong boys. 😉
First stop: The Eco-Tourism Park.
Hazel’s tires needed more air.
Jill looking at unusual sea creatures. We felt like we were on a field trip.
One of the things that I loved about the island are the kids. Whenever they see bikers, they would say “Hi” and would do high five.
4 girls and 11 guys but one was missing.
We got so hungry and decided to go to a place where Wendell knew someone who could cook delicious Saang or Spider Shells. We forgot what the place was called. Since the island is small, you’ll be able to pass by small huts where the locals sell and cook Saang. There were also eateries near the port where you can buy these. Just ask the locals.
We watched how our meal was prepared.
She made sure that the shells were cleaned first.
Fresh from the sea. They sell these for Php 7 each.
These were then boiled in water with salt and MSG.
We had our early lunch/brunch at 10 AM.
It was my first time to eat Saang and it was delicious! Best paired with puso (rice wrapped in Coconut leaves) and Coke. Burp!
We dropped by the boardwalk.
Our bikes needed to rest too.
You can get a good view of the beach and the mangroves on the bamboo boardwalk. I could imagine walking here during sunrise or sunset. It would be lovely.
Keep calm and relax.
A dead sea snake.
We then went to our last stop, the Olango Wildlife Sanctuary.
We thought that this was the Olango Wildlife Sanctuary and took the U-turn.
Wrong way, guys!
Waiting for the others under the shade.
Welcome to the Olango Wildlife Sanctuary!
We found a perfect spot to rest and park our bikes.
You have to pay an entrance fee of Php 30.
The sanctuary supports the largest concentration of migratory birds found so far in the Philippines. There are 97 species of birds in Olango, 48 of which are migratory species, while the rest are resident birds of the island. (http://www.olangowildlifesanctuary.org)
We all looked at one thing: Butong! (Coconut)
We were all tired and our muscles were sore. We needed rest and coconut juice. Coconuts sold at around Php 20 each.
We wanted to check if there were any birds in the sanctuary. Since we were not able to bring slippers/diving shoes, we walked barefoot towards the viewing station.
It was high tide and the water covered the walkway.
There were a lot of small black fishes beside the concrete walkway. They only stayed in that area.
The water was getting deeper as we reached the viewing station.
Thick Mangroves which already looked like islets.
The viewing station. Unfortunately, we didn’t see any birds. The best time for birdwatching is from September to May and according to the sanctuary’s official website, “visit at least two hours before peak high tide in order to see the largest concentration of birds in small areas.”
After hours of biking, we decided to take a dip in the water. Photo credit: Gab Lumbo
Olango Island is perfect for biking. You have to prepare your body for hours of pedaling and staying under the heat of the sun. It is definitely a must try for all biking enthusiasts. 🙂
P.S. The photos were taken using a Samsung Galaxy S5.