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5 Facts for the Calaguas Island Weekender

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Cal means lime and agua/s is water in Spanish. It is apt if you look at the clear and azure waters of this place.
Cal means lime and agua/s is water in Spanish. It is apt if you look at the clear and azure waters of this place.

Calaguas Island Weekender Trip Guide

If you’re tired of your usual chill routine on the weekends, haul your Starbucks coffee sipping, Uniqlo wearing bums out to Calaguas for some much deserved R&R.

By the shore - winning entry by Ed Ong
By the shore – winning entry by Ed Ong

FACT 1: Calaguas is a group of islands – 17 to be exact in Vinzons but the most famous and beautiful is at Mahabang Buhangin which is 1.27 km of powdery white sands on Tinaga Island, the biggest island. Vinzons by the way is the last name of Winceslao Vinzons, the first and youngest congressman of Indan, which is now known as Vinzons.

Also Read: Calaguas Travel Guide

Cal means lime and agua/s is water in Spanish. It is apt if you look at the clear and azure waters of this place.
Cal means lime and agua/s is water in Spanish. It is apt if you look at the clear and azure waters of this place.

FACT 2: It is still sparsely populated, reminiscent of Boracay’s younger days when it was not yet commercialized. No electricity, no potable water, no cellular and data signal, no problem!


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Residents harness solar power for their generators to light up the area and pump potable water. There is no air-conditioning or fans, only power sockets in the huts but there are clean restrooms.

It’s mandatory to disconnect as there’s no signal at the beach. You may get some phone service at the Calaguas campsite which is about 30 minutes of hike. The scenery there is equally breathtaking.

Calaguas Island Weekender - Trekking in Calaguas
Trekking in Calaguas – Calaguas Island Weekender
Calaguas Trail
Calaguas Trail
Calaguas Island Camp Site
Calaguas Island Camp Site
Eerie hut
Eerie hut
Overlooking by Ed Ong
Overlooking by Ed Ong
A local's best kept secret
A local’s best kept secret
While the sun slowly sets
While the sun slowly sets
you can see the moon is already up on the other side of the beach
you can see the moon is already up on the other side of the beach

FACT 3: The commute is still a challenge. From Manila, it’s a zigzag and rough road ride for a grueling 7-8 hours by bus or van, 15 minutes on a jeepney to Vinzons (popular entry point) or Paracale port then 2 hours of a rough water boat ride.

Waterproof everything and put your luggage in large plastic bags – you can buy these at Vinzons port at P20 each.

Also, the bridge in Barangay Tabugon, Sta Elena Camarines Norte was closed when we visited back in March. There’s a rough road diversion which is about 10 minutes of hair raising experience to pass through especially at night.

Ready your meds or bring a sick bag. I don’t advise you sleep through the gut wrenching boat ride as you may miss the beauty of the nearby islands.

boat trip to Calaguas Island
boat trip to Calaguas Island
sometimes waves are unforgivable
sometimes waves are unforgivable

FACT 4: Calaguas is more popular than you think. There are many travel companies and groups that offer different tour options to Calaguas. So if you don’t want crowds, go there on weekdays.

White Sand Beach in Calaguas
White Sand Beach in Calaguas
afternoon light
afternoon light
before the sundown
before the sundown
Calaguas Camp Site
Calaguas Camp Site

For a DIY adventure, I find the Travelling Panda’s post as an excellent guide or go with a group which costs less. I chose Travel Factor’s Calaguas SmartbroTrip with their all in, no fuss 2 days, 1 night itinerary. Food is included plus lots of freebies and prizes! It’s possible to post your adventures in real time when in Bagasbas thanks to #Smartbro.

Ed’s new pocket wifi thanks to #SmartBroTrips
Ed’s new pocket wifi thanks to #SmartBroTrips
Happy indeed, thanks to #TravelFactor
Happy indeed, thanks to #TravelFactor

FACT 5: Side trips abound after Calaguas! These include surfing in Bagasbas, visiting old churches in St Peter Apostle in Vinzons and St John the Baptist in Paracale, waterfalls viewing in Labo and spelunking in Mt. Cadig Cave.

Lunch at the Bagasbas Lighthouse Hotel before the surf lessons.
Lunch at the Bagasbas Lighthouse Hotel before the surf lessons.

So there you have it, 5 facts that can crunch more fun into your weekend stay in Calaguas Island. I’d definitely visit again. Till next time and safe travels!

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