Wednesday, June 3, 2015

The Looong Road to Dinagat Islands

On my way from Borongan, I was looking at the available accomodations from the internet, and there seems to be a lot of cheap options going below P200. It was 5:30 when i reached Guiuan, and thought about hanging out for a while in Andoks Chicken in Plaza/Town Center for an P18 Mais con Yelo.
An hour later, i decided to walk it out to get to the cheapest accomodation available.

The first one I went to is Blue Star lodging house in Concepcion st. It was 10x as filthy as my bag travelling 16 days and no ventilation.

I walked out onto Tanghay View Lodging, and before reaching the far end in Lupuk, I found a number to call. They are fully booked. I walked onto Guiuan Lodging House, but only A/C room available at P500.. not my rate. I was looking for Arcenos boarding house in Mangagantan St, but all structures were ruins of the Yolanda typhoon, and none of the people around know it. I was pointed to Quintin just next to the DLTB  Business  Line. This accomodation is less filthy than Blue Star, probably just 3x as filthy as my bag J, but costs P300... not worth it especially I just had a really good room for P150 in Domsowir.

I asked further and was pointed to Kevin’s (which was closed), another Guiuan Lodging House which was full (though I won’t stay there anyway because all their rooms are A/C and all above P1000). Addisson Pension House was P800, and Hotel Kanshar is P600.

It’s getting late, im getting tired, so i thought of just spending time in an internet cafe, and then spend the night in the Plaza.

After 2.5 hours, it’s closing time for the internet cafe. I walked onto the Plaza and laid on the Just benches.  I think I fell asleep in less than an hour from this time.

sleeping in the guiuan plaza

There were plenty of mosquitoes that woke me up once in a while, and the ball of these kids that played basketball the whole night.

At around 4am, i felt someone opened the zipper of my bag. When the kid realized I got awakened, he ran. I immediately checked, and thankfully nothing missing. I will have to thank the mosquitoes for keeping my sleep afloat.

I did not bother sleep afterwards, and waited for daylight to come. From there, I decided to get to the  terminal, where I shall get the boats.

There is no boat for Loreto in Dinagat, neither for Homonhom. I was told to check out Lupuk.

Central Terminal in Guiuan

Lupuk, Guiuan, Samar 

I went to Lupuk but the only boat around is going Sulapan Island. There is nothing fancy about Sulapan island though as it appears in google. After an hour waiting, I decided to check out the other docking areas. I went “Hollywood” (where there are Homonhon bound boats) and “GT” but none going to Dinagat. I was told I can try to go to a certain barangay in Homonhon where there will be a fiesta in the coming 2 days, and catch any possible visitor on boat from Dinagat/Loreto. It was way too much waiting though, not even sure if I’d get there. I decided to take the Southern Leyte Route instead.
hollywood port in guiuan where most homonhon bound boats are

I got to the Van terminal at around lunchtime, and the overly reckless driver got us to Tacloban in just 2.5hours. I decided to rest the night in Tacloban.

The morning after, after brunch, I was told to get to the  Central  Business  terminal and get the van to Liloan. I got a Van to Sogod (this time not as spacious as the GT, Van Van, or Dubtours services). It took us 2.5 hours to get to Sogod. From Sogod, there was a  bus  that go straight to Benit Ferry.  
The bus left in 20 mins time, though in just another 20 mins, it broke down. There was a problem with the brakes.

bus from sogod straight into benit ferry in san ricardo, leyte

Sogod Terminal in Southern Leyte

An hour of waiting, a Philtranco  bus came.  I was hesitant to ride the bus as it might charge way too much for it is supposed to take passengers travelling long distance, so I asked the conductor first for how much it would cost to Surigao. He said it shall be around P100 excluding the ferry.

In an hour’s time, the bus reached Liloan Port. I knew the boat fare in this port is expensive so I thought about paying my fare to Liloan port, and get to another bus headed to Benit Ferry; Anyway, the conductor has not collected my fare. Then again, I was told that since the next boat will be by 9pm, which is in 4 more hours, the bus is instead moving to Benit Ferry. I thought there was no more need to move.

my suite seat in the bus; i have the whole aisle

Indeed, we moved to Benit Ferry, though when we got there, the boat that is due to leave in an hour’s time is already full; Hence, we will have to board the (instead of 9pm), 8pm ferry. The other problem was, the conductor won’t return the change from the collected P300 boat fare (supposedly for Liloan to Surigao).

We moved at past 8:30 and reached Surigao at nearly 10pm. Checked in at SLB Lodging house along Amet St. The next day, I board the 11am trip to Dinagat Islands. At noon... Finally! Finally!... I am in San Jose, Dinagat Islands.

boat bound to San Jose, Dinagat Islands

Dinagat islands

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