Shy was at Baguio Village Inn

Shy was at Baguio Village Inn
Warm, Quaint and Homey Room for only P350! :)

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Thursday, February 14, 2013

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From Highways to Waterways: Davao to Britania Islands


My friends and I set out to start our trip by taking the 2am Bachelor bus to Hinatuan, where Enchanted Riverspecifically situated 35minutes away from the City proper, could be found, .  That is the only shift for buses that we know, that is, after contacting Bachelor Express regarding their schedule.  

Now this could get a tad confusing.  Originally we planned to take the Dvo-Hinatuan (Enchanted River)-Bislig (Tinuy an Falls)-San Agustin (Britannia Is.) route.  However, we changed our minds and decided to do the Dvo-San Agustin(Britannia Is.)-Hinatuan(Enchanted River)-Bislig (Tinuy an Falls) route, figuring that this option is more time efficient, plus we do not want to go home traveling for 8hours after doing a 4-5hour island hopping excursion at the magnificent Britania.  Farthest first and then work our way towards nearer destinations so our trip going home won't be such a drain.

I know it could get confusing, so I've posted in a map where important points are highlighted by a bigger red mark.  Since San Agustin is nowhere to be found on this map.  I've added on a heart to signify where it's at.

Oh yes.  It's true what they say.  You can rent a stretcher for P10 a night.  I can't help but notice the guy sleeping at the right... he's definitely not appreciating my new icon! hahaha.

So we got to the terminal without really knowing if there's any bus going directly to San Agustin.  I did try to contact Bachelor Express but wasn't able to get an accurate answer.  If you still like to ask them anyway, you may try this link for the info.

As per the suggestion of friend Ann, we could just go there, and then ask around.  

You know, for adventure.

Now for a travel OC like me, I like everything planned out.  If I had to plan what kind of food to eat at a certain resto at a certain meal, I would.  But no, not on this trip.  I had to let go of fixed planned structured itinerary, and embrace spontaneity.  I must admit, it was nerve-wracking, but the excitement was there alright.

So as soon as we arrived at the Davao terminal at 12:30am my friend and I started to ask around and learned that the bus going there had already gone at 12midnight.  But of course, there were options.  There was a bus to Butuan leaving at 1am.  Thank God we were already all there and finally got on board!  According to the staff at the terminal, we needed to drop off at San Francisco, and take a bus again going to Borobo, from there we take a bus going to Hinatuan.  Borobo is the point where the roads to Britania and Hinatuan split up.  So this is like a transfer point of some sort.  

I took this pic at 2am while we were on the bus going to Surigao.  Notice the coconut leaves look like they're all harassed.  That's because few weeks ago, 'Pablo', passed by this part of Mindanao and just blew everything away.
For long travels like this, I needed to have my daily dose of chocolates and of course, my hand-dandy camera.
Later in the bus, the local guy from Butuan, told me that buses going to Borobo leaves on a 1-hr interval basis, so just in case we couldn't catch up with that bus, we could always take the van instead.  The latter option was exactly what we did.  The bus ride from Davao to San Frans cost us P260/pax.  We took the non air since it was the only one available at that time.  Expect to pay more for air conditioned buses.

After 6 hours, we got down from San Francisco, or San Frans as locals fondly call it, we contracted a driver of a van to take us to Britania, but first we had to get a quick breakfast at Jollibee, which was just at the back of the terminal, a couple of minutes walk away. After eating, we headed back to the terminal and got into the van, paid P200/pax and took the 45-min. ride going to our destination. La Entrada, in Britania, which is the starting point for island hopping. 

I haven't really asked about the prices of their cottages.  But if you are interested to stay here for the night, please do contact them here.

The island hopping costs P1000 for unlimited hours on sea.  It's considerably cheaper on non peak season but is expected to increase during summer reaching up to P1500 or so. 

Now since it is rainy season, we expected rain showers here and there.  But no. We got monsoon.  We figured it was fine since we will get wet anyway.

So there we were, 4 giddy first timers, setting out to take their first look of the magnificent Britania islands, in the middle of the sea, with heavy, crazy rain showers and unpredictable seas. 

And since it was adventure that we asked for, it was adventure that we got! 


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