Samar – Biri Island & Paranas
March 17 to 20, 2017
Please see Leyte entry for days 1, 6, 7
✿ Checked out GoHotels Tacloban before 4am, off to the terminal. Since 5am pa alis ng mga van going to Catarman, we opted to ride bus going straight to Lavezares, aalis na ng 4:30am, fare @P250 each. Had about 30 min stop over at Catbalogan for breakfast, and we reached Lavezares port at aroung 1 pm. Whew! 8 hours travel time. 😢😭😳
✿ Boat to Biri island. Regular fare was just P50 per person for a boat good for 15 passengers, pero para makaalis na agad, we agreed to pay P100 each, 6 passengers lang kami. Thankfully the water was calm but the waves could be rough at times as the boat ride crosses the San Bernardino strait. We reached Biri island an hour later.
✿ From the port, we rode habal going to Villa Amor to drop off our bags, then deretso kami to the tourism office to register. We scheduled our tour the next day… tour package costs about P595: tourism fee at 50 each, tou guide fee at 300, then habal fee at 195 included na yung paghatid sa min from port to the resort. If gusto mo wait na lang si habal driver while you explore the rock formations, just need to pay additional P25 per hour.
✿ Going back to Villa Amor, we reserved 2 nights via Airbnb. We stayed at the owner’s master bedroom… with air conditioning, big bathroom, no tv though. Electricity pala in Biri runs from noon to 4am, good thing Villa Amor has a generator, and sobrang presko sa room, just open the windows and you will not even notice na wala na palang kuryente. Most if not all of their rooms are beachfront, they have a magnificent sunset view, and very spacious balcony. Pwede din magpaluto sa kanila, but we mostly had our meals sa pavilion near the tourism office.
✿ Biri rock formations. Magasang, Masapad, Bel-at, Karanas, Puhunan. From afar parang wala lang, but once you are there… I don’t think I can truly describe them. Pictures won’t give justice either. Magnificent. Humbling. Awesome. Had more than 2000 photos after the tour 😀😜🙃
✿ Checked out at around 7am, headed to the port going back to Lavezares. Again, an hour boat ride, fare at P60 each.
✿ From Lavezares, we rode and paid 100 to the habal going to the Grand tours van terminal in Allen. 100 van fare per person going to Calbayog, then 100 uli going to Catbalogan. Had lunch at Jo’s chicken inato in Catbalogan, then bus ride going to SINP Paranas, fare @50 each.
✿ SINP or Samar Island Natural Park. We stayed in one of their eco lodges good for 6 pax. Government facility to and nomally P150 per person ang rate if you want to say overnight. We had the whole room just for the two of us with a/c and own t&b so we paid P500 per night. P150 per person if gusto mo magswimming pero di naman kami siningil na din. Meron din silang 3-tiered infinity pool with nice view. Downside: no mobile signal the whole time we were there.
✿ Torpedo boat ride at the Ulot river. Package costs P1825 good for 5pax na, pero since 2 lang kami, ganun pa din price. Nag-start kami around 9am. Down stream siguro took us about 45 min, then a little longer upstream naman pagbalik. We reached Deni’s point sa bandang dulo where you can jump sa water ala-washing machine, plus raining pa haha. As usual, tagal ko uli bago mag-jump, but I did it! Twice. Yay!
✿ We were back at SINP before noon, the checked out. Medyo maulan na, and as we were waiting for more than an hour na, pero walang bakante na van or bus going to the highway, hinatid na lang kami ng mga taga-SINP via motor bike. Adventure talaga, riding a bike while raining, sakit sa mata ng ulan 😂, sabi nga ni Bob dapat nilabas ko talaga yung goggles haha. Buti na din, meron ako dala transparent garbage bags, nagamit namin as rain coat and bag cover… another must have na sya everytime we travel.
✿ From the highway, dinner muna, madali naman kami nakasakay ng bus going to Tacloban. Approximately 2-3 hours yata byahe namin till we reached GoHotels Tacloban uli. We got to check in past 7pm na siguro yun.