By now, you’ve heard about Fortune Island. The Greek-inspired columns…the pristine teal waters surrounding the paradise..the story behind the remains of a woman enclosed in a monument who, every now and then, haunts unwanted visitors…there are a number of tales pertaining to how mesmerizing the island is, to tell you the truth. This may also be the reason why we heed her call.
The planning part of the trip was easy. It was either my friends were experienced backpackers or brave enough to take in whatever mishaps that can possibly happen. We decided to bring 1 tent (we’re 4 in the group; 2 decided to surrender under the night sky), cook set, tilapia, liempo, sashimi, 4 kilos of bigas, and 2 gallons of drinking water. We were good to go, provided we bring our own alcohol. (*≧▽≦)
The trip from Manila to Nasugbu, Batangas didn’t take long. As soon as we saw Tagaytay we were giddy as a kid on Christmas Morning. We arrived at the Nasugbu town proper and were overwhelmed by the number of people going to the island. Everyone was ecstatic and the place was a reminiscent of Divisoria on Christmas rush. It’s actually a good thing that the place is my partner’s home town. His cousin entrusted us to a very reliable and honest group of bangkeros who took good care of us (and yes, I will give you their contact information).
Before we knew it, we were already settling our landing fees on the resort owned by Mr. Kim, the Korean businessman who now own the island. After paying, we headed off to Wawa Port and rode the motorboat to the island. For the weak of heart and stomach, the motorboat ride would be challenging. The waves can be violent, let me warn you. It would be best to travel before 3:00 PM, which we were not able to do. Nevertheless, if you would share the same fate as ours, make the most out of the tide. Imagine: Anchors’ Away.
Once you have arrived, it will be all worth it, trust me. My very first view of this Eden was something I would not forget. Although there were a lot of people moving about, my eyes were focused mainly on the sea, the cliff, the rock formation, and how tragically beautiful the remnants of the place are.
We found our campsite and immediately set up our tent and cooking ground. We started preparing the fish and the liempo, and ended up with a round of alcohol. When we were all set up, we took a dip on the majestic waters. I could never emphasize the need to be careful as the corals can be sharp on some areas and the waves can be unmanageable. The island’s first victim ☆⌒(＞。≪) :
If you are looking for some R & R and think that this island would be the best place for that, you are wrong! Most of the campers conduct their socials at night. There will be noise, lots of fun noise, for that matter. There will be drinking. There will be lovers’ quarrel, as well (haha) but that’s just part of the place’s charm. The adventure and youthful aura defines the place. Oh, and just a reminder: there are no washrooms so dig if you must. Dig deep, please.
My recommendation is to wake up early and head to the hills. The best view of the sunrise would be near the pillars. Should you wish to take pictures there, this would be the right time. You can also trek around the place admire the view of the island from above. If you are itching to cliff dive, please don’t do it by the pillars. Not the right place!
Follow the trail pass the lion statue and go down the steep stone stairs to get to the cliff diving area. If you are not a good swimmer, please wear a life jacket as the drop is gaping and the waters are deep. And the waves…the waves are strong. If you are an adrenaline junkie, please ignore my old-lady-rants. There are 3 levels defined by height, by the way. Level 3 gave me nightmares. Oh yes, I jumped.
Now, if you’re done trekking, cliff diving, roaming about, taking pictures for your Instagram account, and drinking your guts out, there’s nothing much to do aside from hanging out. This is not suggested, though, as the sun can be scorching during summer. Asking you bangkero to pick you up at around lunch time is more than enough. Inform them about you plans before they drop you off the island since they’re pretty much busy.
….And here is the much awaited breakdown of expenses!
Bus ride from Pasay Bus Station to Nasugbu Town Proper – 155 Php/one way
Tricycle Ride from Nasugbu Town Proper to Resort (to pay for Landing Fee) to Wawa port – 100 Php maximum of 5 heads per trike/one way
Motorboat from Wawa Port to Fortune Island and heading back (one time payment) – 3500 Php to 4000 Php
Landing Fee – 400 (overnight) 350 (day pass)
I highly recommend our bangkeros (they’re a team of bangkeros and trike drivers):
Kuya Jobert – 0926 898 6455
Kuya Rowel – 0927 303 5652
**they are super nice and they don’t overprice 😀
I would like to end this blog entry by reminding you to bring sunblock and water. If you are obsessed with social media, bring your powerbank, as well. And yes, HAVE FUN AND CLIFF DIVE!