SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP PART 1: DIY ITINERARY AND BUDGET
SIQUIJOR – DUMAGUETE TRIP. For those who are asking me, how much would it take to visit the Siquijor Island. Here’s my Itinerary and Budget.
I had been wanting to go on a solo backpacking trip, but I was scared. I had hesitations and somehow, I admit that I actually enjoyed travelling with fellow travelers.
But moving with friends can be hard at times, particularly with our individual agendas. Others are not available on the dates I am free and vice-versa. So finally, I decided to go alone.
At first, I was scheduled to go to the Islas de Gigantes, but the night before my trip I was informed by a friend that travelling to the Island on these dates is quite challenging because of the weather. Right away, I felt the benefit of going alone, I altered my plan at once. Instead of going to Islas de Gigantes, I decided to visit Siquijor Island.
So let me share with you the first of my DIY ITENIRARY AND BUDGET in this SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE travel series.
SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP PART 1: DIY ITENIRARY AND BUDGET
Day 1 – SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP
3:30am-9:30 am – Bacolod to Dumaguete Via Ceres Bus (Non-Aircon) – PHP 275.00. Note: No air conditioned bus was available at that time.
10:00 am -11:30 am – Dumaguete – to Siquijor Via GL Shipping Lines. Fare was PhP 150.00 and the terminal fee was PhP 15.00. The port going to Siquijor can be found at the Boulevard in Dumaguete. The vessel was quite small, so you can really feel the motion in the sea. The leg room was also small and the seats were uncomfortable. Passengers also wore the life vest which I cannot afford to put on because it was visibly dirty. But I was holding one…just to be sure.
11:30 am -12:00 nn –Drop by the Tourism Booth located at the main of the Siquijor Port. I was amazed because the booth was really manned and there were people (1 from the department of Tourism and 1 Policeman in Uniform) who assisted me. They also provided me with some literature which I used to explore the place. Another thing which impressed was, Siquijor has a published rate for vehicle rentals and tour rates. I decided to stay in San Juan, a place where most beach houses and hotels are located it is just a few minutes from the seaport. I took a tricycle to bring me to San Juan. Again, they have a standard rate of PHP 250.00 for the tricycle, but what was nice about their tariff was, the vehicle will accompany you to search for your hotel until you will decide on where to stay.In my case, since that was an instant trip I was not able o book a hotel in advance so I still have to search for a place to stay. The tricycle driver who also served as my tourist guide the following day was very nice and courteous. He brought me to a couple of hotels until I finally decide where to stay according to my preference of course.
I decided to stay in San Juan, a place where most beach houses and hotels are located it is just a few minutes from the seaport. I took a tricycle to bring me to San Juan. Again, they have a standard rate of PHP 250.00 for the tricycle, but what was nice about their tariff was, the vehicle will accompany you to search for your hotel until you will decide on where to stay.In my case, since that was an instant trip I was not able o book a hotel in advance so I still have to search for a place to stay. The tricycle driver who also served as my tourist guide the following day was very nice and courteous. He brought me to a couple of hotels until I finally decided where to stay according to my preference of course.
12:00nn-12:45 pm – Check-in to One Sunset Hotel. Rate – 1,400/day with free continental breakfast One Sunset Hotel has a beachfront, a restaurant, wifi, a pool and it’s air-conditioned. These were the reasons why I choose his place because while there were dormitories and cheaper rooms available, some places don’t look safe, some don’t have a restaurant, and in some hotels the rooms available are far from the beach. In my case, I was able to get a room fronting the pool and the place was well lit at night. The hotel was also near some sari-sari stores wherein you can buy some bottled water and other things which you might need.
12:45-1:30 pm – Late lunch at One Sunset Hotel. One thing which annoyed me about the place was their slow service. They only have 1 cook and 1 person serving. So it would be good that when you visit Siquijor, you can drop by Dumaguete City to buy some snack items which you can have any time of the day. In my case, since I am diabetic and I cannot afford to go hungry, so I brought some packed snacks with me.
1:30pm-4:30 pm – Rest. I was very sleepy because I was not able to sleep the whole night before, I took that moment to rest.
4:30pm-6:00 pm – Explored the Beach. I think one of the best feature of Siquijor is their Beaches. They have white sand and it’s not crowded. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any swimwear, so I just enjoyed walking at the shoreline and took a lot oh photos.
One Sunset Hotel, Siquijor
6:00pm-7:00 pm – Dinner at the beachfront. Their food was ranging from PhP 150-350/serving. But don’t expect for something special. They only serve simple food like fried, sinigang, etc. I was even wondering why I haven’t seen much of the seafood when the place was just at the beach.
Travelling alone can be lonely if you are not friendly. While I was eating, I was entertained by the hotel staff.
7:00pm-9:00 pm – I went out to explore the street, But I didn’t go far because I was alone. I went to a store near the place and bought bottled drinks. Beverages at the hotel were really expensive, besides they were not strict about bringing of food and drinks from the outside. In fact, I even asked them to refrigerate the food that I brought all the way from Bacolod and they didn’t charge me for that. Again, it pays to be friendly. While enjoying my drinks, a family from Brazil joined me at the poolside which made me more relaxed and enjoyed my trip.
9:00 pm – Rest. I never slept at this early time back home, but I guess I was really tired.
Day 2 – SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP
6:00 am -8:00 Breakfast. I was planning to enjoy the beach at this moment, but I was disappointed because it was low-tide so I just decided to enjoy the serene place while sipping a cup of coffee.I also took my breakfast after awhile.
9:00 am – Start of My Island Tour. The Island Coastal Tour in a Tricycle would cost one PHP 1,000.00. But the driver charged me an additional PHP 200.00 because he fetch me from the hotel. This was something that was not agreed, but I didn’t argue anymore because I was really planning to give him a tip . So since I felt I was tricked a bit I just gave him 1,200.00. If you are a group of 4, then the rate would be very cheap because you can divide the amount amongst yourself.
The following were the places we’ve visited on our coastal tour: (Note: I will not reiterate on my experiences about these places because I will be writing separate articles on these in my next posts.Calipay Spring Park and St. Vincent de Ferrer Bell Tower – Free Entrance
- Calipay Spring Park and St. Vincent de Ferrer Bell Tower – Free Entrance
- Enchanted Balete Tree and Fish Spa – Entrance is PhP 5.00person; Fish Spa – Donation Only
- San Isidro Labrador Church and Convent – Free Entrance
- Cambugahay Falls – Free Entrance but you have to pay PhP 25.00 for a parking fee. Tour guide was compulsory, but they don’t have a fixed rate. I decided to give PhP 150.00 for the tour guide because I just took photos and treat him for a drink.It was ice to have the guide and a life guard at the same time because he also doubled as my photographer. Paying the tour guide a little more especially if your are travelling as a group. This will help the locals to have their livelihood.
- Our Lady of Devine Providence Church -Free Entrance
- Salagdong Beach –Entrance is PhP 25/person and parking Fee of PhP 25.00. This is also where We ate our lunch. Of course, you have to treat your guide for a lunch as well.
- Guiwahon Spring – Entrance of PhP 10.00/person
- Francis of Assisi Church – Free Entrance
3:00 PM-3:15 PM. The St. Francis was my last stop. The church is also located right in front of the port. After taking pictures of the church, I realized that I still have 45 minutes to wait for the last trip to Dumaguete City. So I decided to stay at Tudia, a snack bar right at the gate of the port. I like the place because they have wifi and while their food was not really spectacular, the taste was acceptable. They also make their own bread.
4:30 pm – 6:10 pm –Going to Dumaguete Via Montenegro Lines. The fare is PhP 130 and the terminal fee is PhP 14.00. I prefer Montenegro Lines as compared t the small vessel because you cannot really the movement of the vessel especially of the weather is not good.
6:30 pm. Check-in at Novo Hotel. Rate :900/day (Queen Suite). I wanted to stay in any of the hotels at the Boulevard because that is where most people go during night time, but all hotels were fully booked that time. So I choose Novo Hotel, It’s an economy hotel, they don’t have a restaurant, but they have clean and spacious room and most especially they have wifi. For me Novo Hotel is a low-end version of the Go Hotels. Don’t mind about the front office staff if they don’t really smile nor appeared unfriendly sometimes. I guess they were not just meant to be in the job but they were assigned there. Novo Hotel is owned by the same owner who owned Novo Store ( a store selling China goods and they are found in many provinces).
In front of the hotels were various restaurants, so eating was not a problem. Novo Hotel is just 2 blocks away from the Boulevard and its right beside Lee Plaza Mall in Dumaguete City.
Siquijor – Dumaguete Trip: Click here for the complete List of Hotels in Dumaguete City
8:00pm-9:00pm- Boulevard: Street Food Tasting
Day 3 – SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP
11:00 am – Dumaguete to Bacolod Via Ceres. Air-conditioned Bus at PHP 335. The bus has Wifi and very comfortable so slept most of the time.
Here’s my other stories in this SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP series:
SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP PART 2 – Calipay Spring
SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP PART 3 –San Isidro labrador Church and Convent
SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP PART 4 – Cambugahay Falls
SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP- List of Hotels and Resorts in Siquijor
SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP – 9 Things to do in Siquijor
SIQUIJOR-DUMAGUETE TRIP – Your Ultimate Travel Guide