Fact Time: Hundred Islands National Park is made of 123 islands and islets that are believed to have formed two million years ago. HINP also known as Kapulo-puluan covers 1,884 hectares of land area.
I was in seventh heaven the next day because finally I am about to see the Hundred Islands National Park! One of my agenda is to count the islands. (I know I am not the only one who is curious to know the answer.)
As mentioned in my last post, Brgy. Lucap Alaminos is still an hour away from Lingayen. So if your main objective is to visit HINP in Pangasinan you can also find quite a few resorts, hotels, and transient houses in Alaminos.
When you reach Lucap Wharf go look for the tourism information office where you have to fill up a tourist manifest and pay for the necessary fees.
Environmental fee – PHP 40/ person for day tour and PHP 80/person for overnight
Pitching fee – PHP 200/camping tent per night
Motorboat fees in PHP:
|Boat Size||Day Tour||Overnight|
|Small (max. of 5 persons)||1,000||1,400||2,000||3,000|
|Medium (max. of 10 persons)||1,300||1,800||2,500||3,800|
|Large (max. of 15 persons)||1,500||2,000||3,000||4,500|
“Regular” means you’ll only visit the three developed islands where you can stay for a maximum of 20 minutes, but you can choose one island where you can stay for the rest of the day. You have to advise the boat operator what time he will have to pick you up.
While the “Service” means you can take it to whichever island you want to go, developed or undeveloped, it’s your call.
HINP tourism office was overwhelmed with tourists when we arrived proving it is one of the most popular summer destinations here in the Philippines.
We rented a service boat because we prefer the “unlimited” boat service.
We went first to Century Island.
You’ll have to climb up a few steps to see this cave of bats.
Then to Shell Island. I wonder why they named it such, I wasn’t lucky to see any shells after all. Maybe, some tourists who visited this island before me had taken some as a souvenir. (Why people? There’s nothing left for me and others to see.)
We also had a quick stopover at Virgin Island.
While across is the Governor’s Island. This is where you can get a better view of the Hundred Islands National Park. The perfect spot if you want to take a “selfie”.
As for the dauntless, this is where you can enjoy a 546 meter zip line connected to Virgin Island. For PHP 250 you’ll get to experience roughly 50 seconds of swoosh and whoop! An AHHH!-some experience that you shouldn’t miss. A small boat will bring you back to Governor’s island or just enjoy a walk via floating bridge connecting the Virgin and Governor’s Island.
On our way to Marcos Island we passed by the Romulo Island, Crocodile Island, Turtle Island, and Scout Island.
If you are hungry for more stunts, then dare to do a cliff dive inside Imelda Cave at Marcos Island.
Stepping on a cliff was terrifying! I remember my heart was beating fast, my knees were shaky, and hands were cold. For a moment I closed my eyes deciding whether to do it or not. So when I had made up my mind, I shouted… WOOHOO!!! There, I had the splash of my life!
Nope! Definitely I wasn’t trying to end my kicky life story (not yet). Let’s just say I am exploring my limits and enjoying the simple adventures that the world offers while I am still young and capable for I have two excuses: YOLO (you only live once) and YOYO (you’re only young once).
(Friendly Reminder: Please be cautious while you are being adventurous otherwise, your game is over.)
After the aerial tricks, it’s time for something less intense, snorkeling and fish feeding. (blog-blog-blog said the fish. Haha!)
Helmet diving was on our to-do list unfortunately it was already late in the afternoon and the place where you can rent the diving gear had cleared the area. (Leaving me a good excuse to go back.)
So we continued our island hopping. Passing by Old Scout Island, Children’s Island, the Cathedral Cave, then had to stop by at Quezon Island for some munchies.
The sun was setting so we had to go back. On our way, we made sure to see the Bat Island. Right, an island where the bats are nestled. How is that possible that these bats only stay in this particular island? I was interested so I asked the boatman, and surprised to learn that they shoo away these bats whenever they see one in other islands. Thus, bats will only stay on a particular island-Bat Island where no human will shoo them away. (That’s the sad trick.)
Our last stop the Cuenco Island, the attraction here is a tunnel cave. If you pass through you’ll see a restaurant on the other side. (Do you now agree that this is the epitome of island hopping?)
I must admit one day is not enough to explore all of the 123 islands. Are there really 123 islands at the Hundred Islands National Park? Sorry, I lost count so that will remain a mystery for me until my next visit.
I am ending this post with the lyrics from the song Nothing But by John Kay:
“Bring nothing but silence
Show nothing but grace
Seek nothing but shelter
From the great human race
Take nothing but pictures
Kill nothing but time
Leave nothing but footprints
To show you came by”