It was a dried out Saturday evening when suddenly my parents decided to go out and get some groceries for our trip the next day, Sunday. I was so confused, yet very excited since it was my first time to set foot in Biliran Island, which is a bit far from our place. My parents had their first step on the island a few months back before their visit with me. Every time we go out of town, I would always suggest chips to munch and chocolates to enjoy while on the road. Seated at the front seat of the car, I was in awe of the green and well-preserved tall trees along the way.
The night before our trip, I was so eager to search for it ahead and finally decided to google some places we could possibly visit. Of course, my first time, so I got no chill. Planned 3 to 4 waterfalls in a row, but let’s see what happened so make sure you’d read this until the very end. Fast forward to the morning that day, I woke up at 4am to prepare stuff. We left home just before sunrise. Good thing I don’t normally get sleepy when going out for a trip because I’m always in task in talking and talking to my father as so he don’t get sleepy while driving.
Biliran Island is an island located in Eastern Visayas Region and considered as one of the smallest provinces in the Philippines. It is a 91. 3 km away from the city of Ormoc and 117.6 km from Tacloban. Just for others not to get confused, when Samar and Leyte were split in to two provinces in 1768, Biliran became part of Leyte. Before it came to be Biliran Island, the island was known as Isla de Panamao (“ethnic fishing net”). As the island progresses, discovery of the natural wonders around the place had develop too. One of the beauty that Biliran is well-known of is the undiscovered paradise, Tinago Falls.
After almost 2hrs and so drive, we finally reached Biliran Island. I suggest you take out your smartphones and do the tracking. Google map was really helpful in locating Tinago Falls. Signal there is quite down, but there are locals who will courteously direct you which way to take. Tinago Falls lies in the heart of Caibiran rainforest. It’s a 10-minute trail from the highway. It’s so accessible with private cars and other vehicles. But for backpackers, you may take habal-habal ride from the highway to the falls.
Habal-habal ride from highway to Tinago Falls costs Php60 or less. Take note that it might vary upon negotiation.
We were already there at around 9 o’clock in the morning. We were the first visitors of the day, and that’s one of the best thing ever, away from the crowd. We’ve decided to take out our food and ate breakfast there before heading to somewhere new.
There’s a huge cottage that shades visitors from the direct heat of the sun. Visitors are allowed to stay there for free. The caretaker was so polite and really nice. We had our breakfast there, and ahhh it’s really very nice to endure no pollution while you chew your food.
Entrance free for adults cost Php20/ head. And minors for only Php10/ head.
After eating, I had all the time to finally get to know up close and personal Tinago falls, or as what people call it, the most hypnotic waterfalls. This place is perfect for nature lovers, don’t fret, Biliran Island is known for its waterfalls. They have a lot of it! So I guess it’s time for me to tour you around, yay!
Oooh, so beautiful. My parents were actually teasing me “that’s it, that’s the falls“. So stupid of me that I almost believed. Hahaha, then suddenly I heard loud drips from somewhere, so I assumed that was it and they were all laughing at me. The place was literally at peace during our visit though it’s a weekend.
One of the beauty that Biliran is well-known of is the undiscovered paradise, Tinago Falls. The word Tinago is commonly known as hidden in English translation. “Tinago ko na nga, nahanap mo pa“, as what others would say, because basically, it’s very much accessible now.
Just to let you know, I wasn’t able to enjoy its cold and refreshing water since I thought we’d move from one falls to another. Well, we actually did, although time did not permit. We were down to our second waterfalls around Almeria, but then it looked like it was so impossible for us to get through its foot so we’ve decided to go back to the main road.
Side note: Make sure to coordinate with the local barangay/ municipal hall before starting your tour around Biliran. They’d love to tour you around the place.
Not being able to coordinate with the Biliran municipal hall was one of the mistakes we did when we visited. We had all the time wasted looking for the exact direction and other stuff. Although we missed the mark, being lost is totally fun and petrifying at the same time. Again, choosing the latter’s a bit rough.
HOW TO GO TO BILIRAN ISLAND
Biliran is pretty much accessible via air, land and by sea. There are quite a lot of options that you might consider in taking. Since Ormoc City is just a few hours drive from Biliran, we had to take the land trip.
1. By Sea
Via Cebu – There is a 10-hour ferry ride to Naval. A 3-hour fast craft ride from Cebu to Ormoc City, then from there, you may take a bus or van to Naval which is usually 1 hr and 30 minutes.
Via Manila – Take the ferry going to Ormoc City, 24 hours. Then from there, take a van or bus going to Naval which will take 1 hr and 30 minutes.
2. By Air
Via Mactan Airport – Fly in straight to Cebu, from there, you may choose which you’d like to take; ferry or fast craft (posted above).
Via DZR Airport – Fly in straight to Tacloban. You may ride a jeepney from the airport that would take you to Tacloban downtown, from there, take a shutte bus going to Naval, Biliran.
Via Ormoc Aiport – There is a once a day direct flight from Cebu to Ormoc, from there, you may ride a tricycle going to the city. Take a bus or van that would take you to Naval, Biliran.
3. By Land
Biliran is much accessible by land. There are options from Davao going to Naval, Manila, Tacloban and Ormoc. Buses from Tacloban, Manila and Ormoc travel daily to Naval Biliran. For Davao, there is a daily bus travel going to Tacloban.