What’s more melodramatic than an entire island that vanishes into the night? Okay, so I’m not entirely sure when in the day it actually submerges into the sea but it does at one point and that’s the reason why it was called the Vanishing Island. So before it disappears for the day, we got a chance to stroll down its shore and create our own staged melancholic moments for the camera.
We woke up early that day just to catch the island during low tide where it is in it’s best state. For obvious reasons.
ISLAND HOPPING IN STYLE
It was a short drive from our hotel to the wharf where an outrigger boat from Island Banca Cruises was waiting for us. From afar, the boat looked like any ordinary banca, only its striking stark white color with citrus orange accents stood out from everything else and its color complemented well between the blueness of water and sky.
See, we were all pretty excited that day. Regardless where the boat was taking us, the fact that we were on an island-hopping tour is enough to elicit the best smiles and highest of spirits in all of us. Plus, there’s no better way of cruising these waters than the pimped outrigger provided by Island Banca Cruises! It’s no posh yacht, but this upgraded version of an outrigger is a different experience in itself.
The boat has it’s own bathroom, 4 white bean bags, clean towels for everyone, and snorkels for those who wish to check out the marine life during the tour. Shala!
A lot of my favorite photoshoots (feeling model) came from this set, taken by one of my talented sons, Renz, who is one of my official photographers during trips. Hahaha. It was one of the most relaxing days of our 5-day stint in Davao.
THE VANISHING ISLAND
Located near the island of Samal, this place is a popular tourist attraction because of its white sand and scenic view. It could also be a potential getaway for a romantic date if you have the island all to yourself. I mean, just look at the crystal clear waters underneath blue skies. With a little bit of preparation, you can have a memorable picnic date with your significant other by the sand bar.
Because of the shallow water, the boat couldn’t get near and we had to walk our way to the beach. Aside from seagrass and starfishes, there were also several sea urchins and sea cucumbers scattered all over the shore so one has to be extra careful not to step on one. Thankfully, Renz was forced to guide me all the way to the alluring sand bar.
What adds to this island’s charm is the group of mangroves that were planted by the locals. The only trouble I have with those mangroves are the sharp tiny roots/stems emerging from the white sand. It’s best to advice kids and clumsy people *ahem* not to wander around too much because these could potentially be fatal.
Good thing only a small portion of the island is covered by mangroves. The sand bar is just so wide that I could picture me and my friends playing frisbee all day long. I mean… until high tide, that is.
The Vanishing Island is also a good site for divers, apparently. And from research, I found out that one does not need to be a professional or experienced diver to experience the marine life under the sea. Of course, you need to know how to swim and survive down under first. Now, for the toddlers, they can snorkel around and look for sand dollars and starfishes. If you’re bringing along your spoiled brats, maybe you can push them over the sea urchins. Lol. Or maybe have them play hide and seek near the mangroves.
Aside from the mangroves, this vanishing isle has been slightly developed with a few cottages standing on stilts on both sides of the island. I’m just not too sure if people can still go inside because this particular cottage seemed to have broken stairs. Or, I think it’s only accessible by boat during high tide.
But you know what I love most about this particular island? It’s sooooooo darn photogenic! Even more so as a backdrop for the most dramatic photographs! Just close your eyes or look far into the horizon, convert your image to black & white, and you now have a photo that’ll fit your wake. *knocks on wood*
Melancholic moments by a lonesome cottage on a vanishing island. How. Emo. Can. You. Get?
We couldn’t help it. We could not accept the fact that in a few hours, this beautiful island will be submerged into the depths of the unforgiving ocean. In a few hours, it will all disappear… parang pag-ibig. So even with high spirits, there’s no stopping us from faking drama for the camera.
Located smack in the middle of Davao del Norte and Samal Island, you can go here via several motorboats going to Talikud Island. OR you could avail one of the island hopping tours provided by Island Banca Cruises.
This is easily one of my new favorite spots in the Philippines. Next time I visit Davao, I’ll make sure to tour the entire island of Samal and possibly drop by this place again. A picnic and a game of frisbee would be nice.