Anilao, a tourist spot known to many divers for its diverse corals and abundant habitation of fishes, situated in the south Luzon, Mabini Batangas. There is also a side trip short trek to Mt. Gulugod Baboy. Updated May 2016
Anilao is the drop off point for divers where its beauty lies hidden underneath the sea. It is accessible via land travel around 2-3 hrs by vehicle and a lot of resorts/hotels offer a shoreline access to snorkelling area just a few steps away.
The shoreline of Anilao don’t have white beaches but you’ve got to see the amazing environment below. We opted to explore by snorkelling the shoreline of Anilao without costing us a fortune from dive packages just to see its beauty .
After a two and half hr drive down SLEX and STAR Toll ways to Anilao, we stayed at King Solomon Resort where they have an open access to the shore which is already a snorkelling area a few meters away.
Side trip: Trek to Mt. Gulugod-Baboy
Before heading to discover Anilao underneath, we planned our early morning adventure for a Trek to Gulugod Baboy (easy trek for beginners). There are 2 entry point trails going to the summit.
- For the adventure junkie, you can go thru the 30 minute hike starting from Philpan Dive Resort jump off point. The trail is an uphill climb which is good for a dry sunny day (gets muddy when it is a rainy day). Vehicles can go up to this point (google coordinates below) https://www.google.com.ph/maps/place/13°43’31.5%22N+120°53’28.8%22Eemail@example.com,120.8891473,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x0!8m2!3d13.725413!4d120.891336?hl=en
- For others that prefer convenience to savour the view atop the summit, they can go by vehicle to the other side where the pay parking area is only a few hundred steps to the summit. Parking Area with google coordinates below https://www.google.com.ph/maps/place/13°43’31.3%22N+120°53’51.0%22Efirstname.lastname@example.org,120.8969598,190m/data=!3m2!1e3!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x0!8m2!3d13.725363!4d120.897507?hl=en
see video link below for a panolapse of the Gulugod-Baboy (click HD) https://vimeo.com/168518333
Anilao Shoreline Snorkeling: King Solomon Resort
There are quiet a few other choices to explore the shoreline like Eagle’s Point Resort, Anilao Beach Club, and King Solomon Resort. We booked a room online for less than 2000 Php at King Solomon. There is nothing much to do in Anilao but to dive and snorkel. We entered the shore of the resort and just swimming just few a strokes away is a diverse array of corals beneath. We even found a sea turtle hiding behind these corals.
If you are adventurous enough you can swim farther away to get to the larger corals where you can find more schools of fishes
Camping Adventure to the Island of Maricaban
We headed to the island of Maricaban to see the riches that lies below which only a few may have known. It is an unspoiled beach that doesn’t have all the amenities for a relaxing getaway but you get to enjoy its sights diving the corals beneath.
The destination is 30 minute boat ride going there from the Mabini port via passenger boat going to Maricaban. Open parking is available in the port area at no cost.
A single trip cost about 70 Php per head and only leaves Mabini port once at around noontime. Upon reaching the village where you boat docks, you have to walk around 5-10 minutes going to the other side of the island. You just ask for the beach area owned by Mang Viktor.
see google maps coordinates for the beach of Mang Viktor
Entrance to Mang Viktor’s place is 250 Php per head per night. We stayed for 2 nights and got to use one of their cottages. You have to provide your own tent and food when coming to this area.
Electricity is not available in the cottage area but the owner can provide you some battery powered lighting. We brought all our camping equipment with us including LED lights and 20,000 mAH of power bank for charging our cameras, gadgets and lighting. Water is available in the owner’s house fetched from deep well source. However their toilet area is not that convenient enough which they have to improve as the owner had told us.
The Only Activity: Survive on your own and Enjoy Snorkelling
This adventure will test your survival skills so you have to come prepared. We stayed for 3 days and 2 nights and brought enough food and water with us. You can also hike for around 5 minutes to the village to buy at their stores where water, hot bread and food groceries are available. The rest of the day you enjoy swimming and snorkelling finding lots of fishes.
see video link below to see more of our fun adventure https://vimeo.com/172079364
Make sure you have enough sunblock to protect you from the heat of the sun. All of us went home 3 shades darker. The following morning you need to be up early to catch the 7am boat ride back to Mabini port.