“Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain… To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it.”
It was not my first time to visit Calayan. In fact, I decided to do it as a yearly escape in order to at least experience being away from the city. I was expecting that there will be no more excitement since I have visited the place. For some reason when I arrived at the port area, I felt that it was my first time when I saw the white sand beach and clear waters of the island. Happiness was all over me and got thrilled again to explore the place.
How to get to Calayan Island
From Manila, you will need to ride a bus via Junction Luna going to Claveria, Cagayan. The fare is php850 and make sure to reserve you seats because there are a lot of passengers going to the north. Travel time is roughly between 12-13 hours, so prepare yourself and make sure you don’t get bored. There are two stop overs, one in Tarlac (TPLEX) and in Vigan, Ilocos Sur. No need to worry because the bus is secured with a comfort room and their seats are comfortable enough designed for a long travel.
Once you arrived in Claveria, Cagayan town proper, you will need to take a tricycle going to Fish Landing Port for php20 per head. You next trip will be a 5-6 hours boat ride from Claveria to Calayan. A ferry boat will bring you to the island via the South China Sea (Philippine Sea) about 83.9 KM Northeast with a fare of php500. The best months to go to the island is from April to first week of June.
Where to Stay in Calayan Island
The island does not have any hotels or beach resorts. Most are Homestay business wherein it a form of hospitality and lodging whereby visitors stay in a house or apartment of a local. The prices vary depending on what type of services the homestay offers. I personally recommend Pagdagusan Homestay because aside from accommodation, part of their service is to provide complete meal to their guests. Take note, it’s not the typical everyday meal. For more information, you can visit their facebook page. Pagdagusan Homestay
Sibang Cove, Calayan
A cove is a small type of bay or coastal inlet. Coves usually have narrow, restricted entrances, are often circular or oval, and are often situated within a larger bay. Small, narrow, sheltered bays, inlets, creeks, or recesses in a coast are often considered coves. Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cove.
The most famous cove in Calayan is the Sibang Cove. This is located within the geographical jurisdiction of Brgy. Dadao. Its adjacent coves are Caniwara and Cababaan but what separates Sibang from the rest is the fine white sand and a broader clean shoreline with not much of rock formations which you will surely be amazed.
The coastline is perfect for landscape photography and suitable for relaxation because for the unspoiled beach and clear waters. The locals are also doing their best to maintain the cleanliness and penalties are being charged to those who violate the municipal ordinance. Even non- residents of the island are also obligated to continue in preserving its beauty. Overnight camp including bonfire is not any allowed in Sibang Cove. The municipal government wanted all the tourists and the locals follow the ordinance so that others can also experience the exquisiteness of the cove.