GUIMARAS ISLAND TRAVEL GUIDE 2021: Travel Requirements, Tourist Spots and more

Guimaras Island Day Tour Travel Guide

Guimaras Island Travel Guide

2021 Ultimate Travel Guide to Guimaras Island 

When you think of sweet mangoes in the Philippines, most people would recommend those from Guimaras Island. Just a boat ride from Iloilo, it used to be part of that province until 1992. It is among the smallest provinces in the country, but it makes up for its small size with sheer lush greenery and natural attractions.

Guimaras Island Travel Guide
Guimaras Island Travel Guide

It was formerly Himal-us, a derivation of the word “paghimud-us,” which means to struggle for survival. With its popularity as a destination for both pleasure-seeking tourists and adventure seekers, it no longer has to struggle quite so much. Here is a quick travel guide for those who want o go to the “Mango Capital of the Philippines.”

Mangoes galore in the Guimaras Manggahan Festival
Mangoes galore in the Guimaras Manggahan Festival CC BY-SA 3.0

Guimaras is an island located in Western Visayas which is surrounded by fascinating islets. This island is overflowing with natural attractions that are definitely inviting for adventure seekers and pleasure travelers.

This island will truly satisfy its visitors. Guimaras has also been blessed with beautiful beaches with white sand. And of course, when you say Guimaras, who can forget the mangoes? After all, their mangoes are one of the reasons that make this province known to almost everyone.

Guimaras Travel Requirements 2021 [New Normal]

Guimaras to Accept Fully Vaccinated Individuals

[As of July 8, 2021] The Province of Guimaras will open its door to individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19 pursuant to the guidelines issued by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Governor Samuel T. Gumarin issued Executive Order No. 30, series of 2021 on July 8 further easing border and community containment measures in the province.

  • Fully vaccinated returning or visiting persons coming from outside Western Visayas are not required anymore to present a negative RT-PCR test result upon entry.
  • A COVID-19 domestic vaccination card duly issued by a legitimate vaccinating establishment or a certificate of quarantine completion shall be presented by fully vaccinated individuals for them to be allowed entry into Guimaras.
  • An individual can be considered fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the second dose of COVID-19 vaccine for two-dose vaccines.
  • Individuals inoculated with single-dose vaccines can be considered fully vaccinated two weeks after he/she received the shot.
  • Returning or visiting individuals coming outside Western Visayas but are not fully vaccinated yet, shall present a negative RT-PCR test result before they can be permitted to enter the island province.
  • Residents of the province who are senior citizens and fully vaccinated are now allowed to go out provided they have to present a COVID-19 vaccination card and follow the minimum public health standards.
  • Fully vaccinated individuals who are “close contacts” of probable and confirmed COVID-19 cases will have a shortened quarantined period of seven days provided they remain asymptomatic for the duration of the quarantine period.
  • However, fully vaccinated individuals who are close contacts but have been traced beyond the seventh day from last exposure and who have remained asymptomatic are not required anymore to undergo RT-PCR testing and quarantine.

How to get there

There are no direct flights to Guimaras. The easiest way to get to Guimaras from Manila or anywhere else except for Bacolod or Negros Occidental is to fly to Iloilo on any daily flights offered by Cebu Pacific, AirAsia, or Philippine Airlines.

Iloilo to Guimaras Travel Guide

  • Iloilo is the best jump-off point because it is only a 15-minute ferry ride away from Ortiz Wharf (to Jordan, the capital) or Parola Wharf (to Buena Vista).
  • The fare is about PhP14, and there is a trip every 15 minutes. Easy peasy.

Passenger Banca / Boat

  • Coming from Ortiz Wharf, you can hire an outrigger boat bound for Jordan Wharf in Barangay Rizal, Jordan.
  • Coming from Parola Wharf, you can hire an outrigger boat bound for McArthur’s Wharf in Sto. Rosario, Buenavista. The standard fare is P50, and the discounted fare for students, Minor, and Senior Citizens is P35. The travel time is about fifteen to twenty minutes.

Choose which one is nearer to your location.

Roro

  • You can ride a RORO if you have brought a car with you. You can ride a RORO from Lapaz, Iloilo City going to Port San Jose, Barangay Hoskyn, Jordan.

Best Time to Visit Guimaras

They say that the best time to visit the island is during the summer season (April to June) to better enjoy and indulge in the beaches. This is the perfect time that you will be able to explore the island to your heart’s content.

Beach in Guimaras
Beach in Guimaras

What You Need To Wear and What You Should Bring

What you will have in your suitcase is important to consider when you have finally decided to go to this beautiful island. You should bring shorts, a set of nightwear, t-shirts and don’t forget your swimsuit. Don’t forget to bring toiletries with you.

Of course, you should also bring undergarments, your gadgets, and diving gear if you are interested in that kind of adventure. Also, don’t forget to bring sunscreen, for you will probably get a bit of tan while exploring around.

Sunset in Guimaras photo by Mark Kucharski via unsplash
Sunset in Guimaras photo by Mark Kucharski via Unsplash

What To Expect

When visiting this island province, the first thing that you will probably look for is where you can get mangoes and taste the most famous food on the island.

They say that you can explore the island in 2 days by the sea and by land.

What To Do: Guimaras Tourist Spots, Interesting Activities

There are several destinations on this island which you will enjoy to your heart’s content. The GUISI Lighthouse is the 18th-century Lighthouse that was built for Mariners. This served as their guide when they were passing the Guimaras and Iloilo Strait. This Lighthouse is almost falling apart, but this is the 2nd oldest Lighthouse in the country.

World's Sweetest Mango
World’s Sweetest Mango

You can also drop by the Holy Family. If you feel that stress is hitting you, this is one of the best places to go. Even the not-so-religious people will appreciate this place as it boasts of a station of the cross with life-sized statues.

Another place you can go to is the Taklong National Marine Reserve.  This is where you can appreciate the mangroves for yourself. You can also hear the chirping of the birds and the serene sound of the ocean. You can also see the corals because the water is very clear.

Don’t forget to add the Ave Maria Islet to your island-hopping itinerary. You will enjoy the fine white sand and get a good view of the reef, with a wide selection of fish and coral.  You can also go snorkeling here and have a chance to feed the fish.

Alobijod Cove Resort in Guimaras
Alobijod Cove Resort in Guimaras

Guimaras Island Tours

If you land in Jordan or Buenavista Wharf, you need to register at the tourism office in Jordan. You can also get a tourist map there if you would rather DIY a tour of the island instead of hiring a tricycle driver as a tourist guide. If you booked into a resort, you probably have to go to Nueva Valencia, PhP250 per tricycle (suitable for four people).

Beautiful Beach in Guimaras Island by Cristina Ong via Unsplash
Beautiful Beach in Guimaras Island by Cristina Ong via Unsplash

Guimaras Land Tours

If you decide to hire a driver as a tour guide, the standard rate is PhP1,200 to PhP1,500.  If you are a large group, you might want to charter a multi-cab. The tourism office can help you with that.  Attractions that are part of the standard tour are:

  • Alubihod Beach (Nueva Valencia)
  • Guisi Lighthouse And Beach (Nueva Valencia)
  • Mango Research Center (Jordan)
  • Museo De Guimaras (Jordan)
  • Smallest Plaza (Jordan)
  • Trappist Monastery (Jordan)

Special attractions you can request for an additional fee are:

Island Hopping in Guimaras
Island Hopping in Guimaras
Ave Maria Islet sits a few meters away from Alubijod Beach
Ave Maria Islet sits a few meters away from Alubijod Beach

Island Hopping in Guimaras

You might also want to do some island hopping. Get to Raymen Beach Resort via tricycle, where you can charter a boat suitable for 6 or 10 people. The standard rate is PhP400 and PhP500 for the first hour, respectively, and PhP150 for each succeeding hour. The boat tour covers:

  • Ave Maria Island
  • Baras Beach
  • Fairy Castle
  • Isla Naburot
  • Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC)
  • Turtle Island

You can also request to go to:

  • Nagtago Island
  • Yato Island

Eco-tourism

If you want to do your part for sustainability, check out the community-based rural tourism programs of Barangay San Roque in Nueva Valencia. They offer six non-conventional tours for adventure seekers of all types, going to remote areas seldom seen by regular tourists.

A girl sits on the bridge at the mangrove planting site - Mangroves in Guimaras
A girl sits on the bridge at the mangrove planting site – Mangroves in Guimaras

To get there, go to Jordan Wharf in time for the 6 AM jeep to San Roque. The trip takes about 45 minutes, and you can avail yourself of tour packages at PhP800 for two hours (including a local guide). For succeeding hours, add PhP150 plus PhP75  (for the guide) per hour. For more information about tours, contact:

Brgy. San Roque Community-Based Rural Tourism (CBRT) Association
Mobile Number: +63 912 414 1797

Where to Eat

One of the most recommended places to eat in Guimaras is “The Pitstop.” This restaurant serves Pizza and Pasta, and other dishes. Don’t forget to try their Mango Pizza, it’s delicious!

Where to Stay in Guimaras?

Check out our complete list of recommended Hotels and Resorts in Guimaras Island via Agoda, or you may also see available Airbnb properties on the island.

See Also:

Klook.com

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: