The scallops capital of the Philippines, a hidden paradise comprising of a remote group of islands located in the town of Carles, Iloilo. Also known as Islas de Gigantes, is one of the must see places here in the Philippines. A four to five hours travel from Iloilo can never be compared to the beauty that this island could offer.

Isla Gigantes Islands in Iloilo is harder to get to than most mainstream tourist destinations in the Philippines. Still, thousands of travelers still flock to Gigantes every year to experience its exotic views. The towns of Carles and Estancia are the main jump-off points, which can be reached by land from all major transport hubs in Panay Island including Iloilo, Roxas City, and Boracay.

The Gigantes Islands are situated approximately 19 kilometers off the coast of mainland Carles on the northeastern tip of Iloilo in Panay Island, Philippines. Aboard land and ferry connections, travel time to Gigantes (via Carles) takes around 5-6 hours from Iloilo City, 3-4 hours from Roxas City, and 6-7 hours from Boracay/Caticlan . The nearest airport to Gigantes is Roxas Airport but the Iloilo International Airport, Kalibo International Airport, and Caticlan -Boracay Airport are also popular transport gateways.

We were travelling from Bacolod and this is how we did it:

From Bacolod-Dumangas ( this is a shorter route going to estancia)

  1. RORO trip going to dumangas; you can ride the earlier trip but do not go beyond the 5am trip, to avoid wasting half of your day.
  2. Upon arriving the dumangas port, ride a tricycle going to Dumangas proper; 10-15mins from dumangas proper.
  1. Take another tricycle ride going to Barotac Nuevo Plaza to wait for the ESTANCIA bus.

 

From Barotac-Isla Gigantes

 

  1. From barotac nuevo plaza, take a 2 hr bus ride to Estancia port.
  2. From estancia terminal, take a tricycle ride going to estancia port about 5 mins
  3. Aim for the 10am boat trip to Isla Gigantes.

 

The Fun Begins!

Tangke Saltwater Lagoon – a hidden lagoon in an island surrounded by limestone rocks.

 

Tanke Lagoon

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Cabugao Island – the island where most photos of Gigantes Islands that we see on the internet was taken. The island is a stretch of white sand beach with hills at the end and a huge rock at the other side.

 

good times and tan lines 🏝

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Bantigue Island – the island that is known for its beautiful sandbar, crystal clear waters.

 

Gigante Norte White Sand Beach.jpg
By PaintedCarpetOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

 

Antonia Island – an island which has a beautiful white sand beach and is also a good spot for snorkeling.

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The Lighthouse – the lighthouse ( a new one, the old lighthouse was destroyed by the typhoon last 2008) is located at the northern tip of Gigantes Norte that offers a great view of the ocean including the island of Masbate. The structure around the lighthouse was built during the Spanish-colonial era.

 

Entry to the New North Gigantes Medium Lighthouse.jpg
By Franz Miko G. VerzonOwn work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

Bakwitan Cave – a cave located in Gigantes Norte.

shadow play 🗿

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I love how you can play with the lighting effects and nature’s wonders to create magical photos. My childhood dream come true… I got wings!

my secret revealed… #angelwings #bakwitancave #raw #nofilter

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Estimated Cost

We took a budget tour package from Island Budget Tours.

Fb: IslandBudgetTours

Tour package for 2

2,500 / pax (P5000)

Inclusions:
* Round Trip Boat Transfer (Carles – Gigantes – Carles)
* Island Hopping
* Caving
* Ancient Lighhouse Visit
* AC Room with Private Bath @ Las Marias Resort
* Tour Guide
* Cave Guide
* Full Board Meals (Seafoods)
* Entrance and Terminal fees

 

Boat ride from Bacolod to Dumangas – 90/pax (180)

Tricycle to Barotac – 40

Tricycle to the Terminal – 40

Ceres Bus to port – 294 (aircon)

Tricycle to port – 250

Environmental fee – 80/pax (160)

 

Going Home:

Vhire- 200/pax (400)

Taxi to Iloilo port 150

Weesam – 280/pax (400)

Terminal fee – 20/pax (40)

Total: P7114

This can be way cheaper if you travel in a group of 5 or more. Click here to check out deals from Island Budget Tours. You can rent a van for pick up and drop off to ports instead of going through multiple transfers.

Hope this helps.

Enjoy your trip!

 

xoxo