Alibijaban Island, Burias Island: Travel Guide, How to Get Here

Alibijaban Island
Alibijaban Island and Burias Island are two beautiful islands in Quezon and Masbate, respectively. Traveling to these places is time-consuming travel but you'll be rewarded with breathtaking beauty. The island has a fine white sand shoreline with trees, bangcas, and local cottages. Mixed on the fine white sand are small living crustaceans and sea shells, and more sea shells by the seashore. The cool emerald crystal clear water is rich with underwater bio-diversity, such as fish, colorful starfish in different sizes and appearances, and many more.

HOW TO GET TO ALIBIJABAN ISLAND: Online, there's no definite information about the schedule of buses bound for San Andres. To create our own itinerary, we asked the staff of Superlines and a few people who visited the island. Then, we discovered that they only have two trips: 2PM and 6PM daily. Bus options are Superlines (in Cubao) and Barney Bus (in Alabang).

BUS FARE AND CONTACT: 300 Pesos (promo fare). At exactly 6PM, we left the terminal. There were several stop-overs and passenger pick-up points. Slept for a few hours. Arrival in San Andres Public Market at 4:00 AM. Waited for the market stalls to open and bought supplies. And we met Van, our newfound friend, also from Manila. Bought supplies and walked on the road to the port. We met Ate Baby (our contact) by the gate and she settled the port manifesto. And proceeded to the motorized banca for departure. Travel Time to the island is 20 to 30 minutes. Ate Baby can be contacted here: 09354850349 (TM) and 09300123620 (Smart). She's very friendly and accommodating.

WHERE TO STAY | CAMPING BY THE BEACH: From afar, I easily noticed that there are locals living in the island. For tourists, there are rooms or camping by the beach accommodation. Tents can be pitched on the open spaces by the beach, like what we did (photo above). We choose a spot with shady trees and away from the others. We spent our first day by sleeping and enjoying the relaxing ambiance on the island.

The Sandbar, with crows flying on the background.
Done with sleeping, before the sunset, we walked on the shore, passing in a small passage inside a mangrove plantation and to the Sandbar, guided by our local little friends. The stretch of the sandbar appears during low tide. During our visit, the fine white sand looks like a golden bar of sand because of the golden reflection of the sunset.

 Photo by Henry Tan
"Dharzie" a small voice shouting my name and I responded, in high pitch: "UY!!" "4AM na!" Camille replied, trying to wake me up. "Parang kakapikit ko palang ahh..." And they laughed.  Our social was until 2AM. So, imagine the feeling of having 2 hours sleep, with brandy in my blood. Headache and stomach ache. No choice but to stand and prepared just coffee for breakfast. Prepared ourselves for a whole day journey to Burias Group of Islands, in San Pascual, Masbate. Van needs to go back to Manila that day, so we were 3 plus 3 bangkeros.

 Photo by Henry Tan
After 3 hours boat ride, we reached our first destination - the Animasola Island, an islet with a gorgeous rock formations. Instead of enjoying its beauty, we prepared and had our breakfast first. When our stomach already recovered, we started discovering the beauty of Animasola. This islet is an enormous rock perched into the water, with a unique and artistic surface. There are plants hanging on the boulders that give green-ey shade on the rock surface.  On the other side, there's clear view of Mt. Mayon in Albay. The waters are just ultra super mega clear, as in super! Entrance and Environmental Fees: 70 Pesos.

Our next destination was Tinalisayan Island, still one of the main islets of Burias. The travel time from Animasola to Tinalisayan is almost an hour. What's unique here is the stretch of fine white sand and the stone balancing is another spot for selfie. There are palm trees surrounding the islet, with benches and cottages available for rent. Halo-halo for sale are also available. Camping are allowed. Toilet and Bath are available. Again, the waters are just ultra super mega clear, as in super! Entrance Fee: 50 Pesos.

Sombrero Island was our last destination. Travel time from Tinalisayan is more than an hour. Compared to the previous two islets, Sombrero is wider. There are a lot of visitors who occupied several cottages and tents pitched by the shore. I also noticed huge water tanks that supplied water to the tourists. Same as the previous two, the waters are just ultra super mega clear, as in super! BUT, the water has a distinct smell, similar to a watermelon or cucumber. Entrance Fee: 30 Pesos.

Our island hopping experience on 3 of the islands of San Pascual was remarkable. Aside from the beauty possessed by each of the islets, the boat ride from islet to islet gave us a heart pounding effect because of the waves. What I knew was we were passing on Sibuyan and Burias Straight. Akala ko nga, di na titibok yung puso ko, pero kapag may malalaking waves at inaangat yung bangka, dun ko lang na-realise na "ay tumitibok pa pala ang puso ko." Tidy up. Rested and waited for the sunset. Prepared and had our dinner. Called it A DAY!!

 Photo by Henry Tan
The next day was Sunday, our last day. For our breakfast, we prepared coffee, with canton and hot pandesal. We had our own long "me times." Just silent. Staring on blue skies and the horizon. Watching the children playing on the beach while listening to music in my playlist. Of course, there were reggae songs, Ariana Grande, country songs from Sam Hunt, and more. We were also watching people passing by our tents, in their swimming attire. That scene happened until 10 AM, the time when we started preparing our lunch. 

HEADING BACK TO MANILA: After lunch, cleaned our stuff and utensils. Breakcamped. Tidy up and settled the fees. At 2PM, we left Alibijaban and traveled back to San Andres Port. Rode on a padyak to Superlines Terminal. Waited for the departure to Manila. Time of Departure: 4:30 PM. Time of Arrival in Manila: 2:00 AM.