Leyte Province is home to beautiful island destinations in Eastern Visayas. Some of its popular white sand islands are Kalanggaman Island, Cuatro Islas and the Canigao islet of Matalom, Southern Leyte. But there’s this one unblemished island spot in the province which is rarely known but correspondingly matched the beauty of the aforementioned island spots – the island of Limasawa, Southern Leyte. Limasawa Island is the place where the first Catholic mass in the Philippines officiated, held on Easter Sunday of March 31, 1521.
The island was popularly known as the origin of Church in the Philippines and where Roman Catholicism took place in the country. The island offers great scenic spots perfect for nature lovers, adventure seekers, diving enthusiasts, and photo aficionados, to wit:
1. Totoy Peak – One must not miss the remarkable setting of the sun at Limasawa. More or less thirty (30) minutes from starting point (Brgy. Triana), catch the dazzling sundown at Totoy Peak and the overlooking view of the sea and nearby barangays with your digital shutters. It’s one great spot for beauty gazers and photo freaks.
2. First Mass Shrine – Inside this memorial are three-dimensional art objects and paintings of representations of the island’s great history.
3. Magellan’s Cross – You need to hike up the steeply 450 steps in reaching the Magellan’s Cross, situated atop the hill in Limasawa. It’s a notably one historic spot!
4. Island Lagoon Resort – The lagoon offers pellucid turquoise-navy water that will surely tempt any cliff diving warriors to jump off the ridge of (x)-metered reef cliffs.
5. Dakdak White Beach Resort – It’s definitely in Dakdak when you see the tire swing dangled from one bent shade tree!
6. The Light House – The watchtower’s located at Brgy. San Agustin and offers an embracing 180-degree panoramic vista from the top.
7. Fish Sanctuary – Fish asylums in Limasawa are hereby guarded by the municipality, preserving the marine species that surround the island. But don’t worry, snorkeling is not prohibited as long as the aquatic species are not harmed.
TRAVEL GUIDE IF YOU ARE FROM MANILA OR CEBU
There are actually daily flights from Manila to Tacloban and Cebu to Tacloban. If you’re from Manila, the flight takes at least an hour and twenty (20) minutes. If you’re from Cebu, air travel takes about forty-five (45) minutes or less. After you arrived at Tacloban Domestic Airport (San Jose, Tacloban City), go to Tacloban City Bus Terminal via taxicab or transfer service. Tacloban City
At Tacloban City Bus Terminal, look for vans or buses which transports to Maasin City. Travel takes at least four (4) hours from Tacloban. Upon arrival at Maasin Bus Terminal, look for bus or cabs which transports to Padre Burgos. (30 to 40 mins.) Tell the driver to drop you off near the port area of Padre Burgos. The passenger boat usually leaves at 8 a.m so be sure to be there before departure time. When you reach the island, there are habal-habal drivers and motorcycles that will bring you to your destinations.
CEBU CITY VIA BAYBAY CITY If you are from Cebu City and would like to get to Leyte via ferryboats, you can take the Cebu-Baybay route via large sea transports and purchase tickets from ferry outlets in Cebu City. Sea travel takes at least seven (7) hours for large passenger ships. The city’s bus terminal is just near the port area so you can directly ride vans or buses bound for Maasin. Tell the driver to drop you off at Matalom Town Proper. Notes: There are also Cebu-Leyte routes via Maasin, Ormoc, and Hilongos, Leyte.
With information from Jessa Delm Castañeda and Rocky Fabilane. More photos here.
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