We weren’t late but there was a big group ahead of us so we had to wait for the next trip. A lot of bags of sand were also loaded into the falowa or round-bottomed banca. All the supplies were transported this way to Sabtang.
We also went to the famous Honesty Coffee Shop. There wasn’t anyone manning the small store. Instead all the snacks, souvenirs and props were labeled with prices and a container was placed on the counter to put in your payment. There were three ladies there eating instant noodles which they made themselves with the hot water provided. Even hard boiled eggs were available.
Honesty Coffee Shop
The falowa ride to Sabtang took 30 minutes. My friend Raymond told me to sit on the end of the boat to avoid the fumes from the engine. Did we listen? Noooo. Well, we didn’t have any choice because the others used to riding the falowa descended quickly and occupied both ends of the banca leaving us poor tourists to sit in the middle smack dab where the engine was.
Here are some tips on riding the falowa. Thank you Raymond!
1. Sit up front or the at the back faw away from the engine.
2. Wear a windbreaker to avoid getting wet. Sometimes you luck out and don’t get splashed.
3. Bring a garbage bag or a waterproof bag to protect your bag and camera gear from more splashes.
4. Take Bonamine before riding the falowa.
5. Wear sandals or flip flops. I guarantee your feet will get wet.
30 minutes felt like an hour with the rough and bumpy ride, fumes and noise from the diesel engine. I was quite dizzy but I managed to zone out and even fell asleep. Some in our group threw up. I really hoped the place was worth it since I really hated the falowa ride.
The tourist center had 3 rooms you can rent if you wanted to stay overnight in Sabtang or if they cancel the falowa ride due to bad weather and you had no choice but to wait until it is safe to travel.
Sabtang Island’s accommodations
To be continued …