A group of islands offering adventures of mysterious caves, stunning lagoons, out of this world rock formations, sand bars, cheap seafood, and white sandy beaches might sound like a dream but what if I tell you it’s not? That you can find all of this in one place? Filipinos call it “Islas de Gigantes”.

It’s not really an island of giants, but the name was created when some locals stumbled upon coffins with huge human skeletons. People assumed these were skeletons of giants.

Now, it’s paradise for beach lovers and backpackers! If you’re planning a trip to Islas de Gigantes, here’s everything you need to know!

But first things first, do you have travel insurance? This is something you should have but wish you never want to use. Accidents can happen anytime and having travel insurance can save you a lot of money in case something goes wrong during your travels! Never travel without one. Get a free quote here.

Important Things To Know About Islas de Gigantes, Iloilo

ATM: There are no banks or ATM on the island so bring enough cash.

Where is Islas de Gigantes located: Islas de Gigantes is a remote group of islands located off the coast of Carles and Estancia towns in northeastern Iloilo, Philippines

Electricity: Electricity runs only on scheduled hours.

Mobile Signal: Smart and Sun Cellular are the only simcards that have signals on the island.

Languages Spoken: Most locals can speak Hiligaynon and are fluent in Tagalog and English.

Best time to visit: December to May is the best time to visit so you can avoid the heavy rainfall, typhoons, and strong sea waves.

Tourist Spots & Islands to Visit

Whether you booked a Gigantes Island Tour Package or chartered a boat for your DIY trip, here are some of the tourist spots and islands you shouldn’t miss in Islas de Gigantes!

Let’s start with how our tour went.

It was 7:00 in the morning when the van we were riding in arrived at Bancal Port, Carles, Iloilo which meant we had 2 hours to eat breakfast while we wait for our 9:00 AM tour to Islas de Gigantes. 

By the time we started our trip, the sky was looking dark and grim. As we moved further away from the port, the waves got bigger. And in the near distance, we saw dark clouds which were sure to bring rain.

Good thing our bags are safe under the boat’s deck so we didn’t have to worry about them getting soaked. As we neared the first island, the rain poured down on us while the rough waves rocked us left and right. We were pretty wet in just a few minutes.

And now in front of us was a thick fog. All the islands disappeared!

For some time, we couldn’t see anything in front except for the white fog. Good thing our captain knew where we were going.

Tangke Lagoon

 islas de gigantes

When we arrived at the Tangke Lagoon, it was already low tide. The water was only thigh-deep but that’s fine.

First things I noticed about the lagoon were the gray and sharp rock formations towering around the lagoon. It was a spectacular sight!

The lagoon itself boasted of clear blue-green waters which made the place looked like a natural pool. Good thing the sun decided to show up for a bit and gave us a glimpse of how the waters sparkled.

Apart from swimming, cliff diving is another favorite here at Tangke Lagoon during high tides.

Cambugao Gamay

gigantes island

Our next stop was Islas de Gigantes’ most iconic spot, Cambugao Gamay. If you searched Islas de Gigantes on Google, the majority of the photos are taken at Cambugao Gamay.

And by looking at the photos below, it’s not surprising that it’s the most photographed spot. The white sand and blue waters provide the best backdrop one could ever ask for.

Bantigue Sandbar

gigantes island

The next place our boat docked at was  Bantigue Sandbar. By this time, we were all quite hungry so we asked our boatmen about our itinerary. Turns out, we were going to visit four islands before lunch. They had to make the necessary changes to the usual tour itinerary because of the bad weather.

Good thing there were kids offering ice candies for 10 pesos. These helped satiate my hunger.

Bantigue Sandbar is pretty wide with turquoise waters splashing on both sides. The sand is quite cream in color and a great place for beach bumming had it not been for the gloomy weather.

Antonia Beach

islas de gigantes

Once everyone was settled, we hurried to our last stop, Antonia island. From afar, you can see stunning rock formations near the magnificent Antonia beach. 

You can go snorkeling around here, as well as, go on a banana boat ride (P200 each), and jetski (P3,000 for every 30 minutes).

If you’re on a DIY trip, you can buy lunch here. Look out for seafood sold here. They’re extremely cheap! Scallops, for example, are sold at one peso per piece.

Lantangan Beach

islas de gigantes

And it’s now time for lunch! We headed to Lantangan beach to eat and wow the food serving from the tour we availed was overflowing! Where else can you eat unlimited chicken, scallops, oysters, and fishes? Even the rice was yummy!

When we went to Manjuyod island the month before, we heard people saying scallops were sold at one peso each in Islas de Gigantes. Turns out, it’s true!

Seafood, in general, is cheaper in Islas de Gigantes than Roxas City or Boracay.

Other Tourist Spots

The above-mentioned islands and tourist spots are the ones included in the day tour island hopping tour we availed. There are however a lot more tourist spots you can check out if you’re planning on staying in Islas de Gigantes for a few more days:

  • Pawikan Cave
  • Gigantes Norte Lighthouse
  • Bakwitan Cave
  • Lango Beach and Sandbar
  • the “Boulevard”
  • Pulupandan Island

How to Get to Islas de Gigantes

To get to Islas de Gigantes, you first have to catch a plane to any of the following airports:

⦁ Caticlan – 7 hours travel time to Islas de Gigantes
⦁ Kalibo – 5 hours travel time to Islas de Gigantes
⦁ Roxas – 3 hours travel time to Islas de Gigantes
⦁ Iloilo – 5 hours travel time to Islas de Gigantes

From Boracay/Caticlan

  • If you’re coming from Boracay, ride a van going to Roxas City. If you prefer to ride a bus, you’ll have to ride one heading to Kalibo then another bus from Kalibo to Roxas.
  • From Roxas, ride a Ceres bus to Estancia then a tricycle to Bancal Port.
  • At the port, you can rent a boat to Islas de Gigantes.

From Kalibo

  • From Kalibo, you can simply ride a bus or a van going to Roxas City. And from Roxas, ride a Ceres bus to Estancia then a tricycle to Carles Port. Then, rent a boat to Islas de Gigantes.

From Roxas City

  • From Roxas, ride a Ceres bus to Estancia then a tricycle to Bancal Port. You can also ride a van going directly to Carles Port.
  • At the port, you can rent a boat to Islas de Gigantes.

From Iloilo City

From Iloilo, ride a bus to Balasan Terminal and a tricycle to Bancal Port. Alternatively, you can also ride a van directly to Carles port. From here you can rent a boat to Islas de Gigantes. So how far is Islas de Gigantes from Iloilo city? It will take you around 5 hours to reach Islas de Gigantes if you’re coming from Iloilo City.

Travel Tip: Check schedules and availability of buses, ferries, taxis or flights to book online with 12Go Asia.

Powered by 12Go Asia system

 

Islas de Gigantes Tour

islas de gigantes

The most common way to explore Islas de Gigantes is via an island hopping tour. You can either join a tour or have a private tour. The latter is more expensive.

You can book an Islas de Gigantes Tour via Klook. This is a hassle-free trip from Iloilo City and includes a pick-up and drop off from your accommodation. So if you easily get lost, I’d recommend Klook’s tour.

RESERVE YOUR TICKETS HERE

We also recommend booking with Gigantes Island Tours and Services. Just send them a message on Facebook and they’ll ask for a reservation fee. The rest of your payment will be settled during the island hopping tour.

You can choose from the following packages they offer:

DAY TOUR | 1-day tour

Price: P999 PER HEAD

Inclusions:

  • joiners tour (you will be joining other people who availed of the day tour package)
  • boat service from/to Gigantes back and forth
  • overloaded servings of food for lunch/Tours (as stated)
  • all entrance fees
  • island hopping= 5 islands to visit
  • tour guide fee
  • environmental fee

2D1N TOUR | 2 days and 1 night tour

Price:

  • 1 pax, 2pax or 3pax at1699/head
  • 4pax at 1649per head
  • 5 pax at 1549 per head
  • 6pax at 1499 per head
  • 8- 7pax at 1399per head
  • 9-10pax at 1349 per head
  • 11 pax up at 1299per head

Inclusions

  • joiners tour (you will be joining other people who availed of the day tour package)
  • boat service from/to Gigantes back and forth
  • private night fan room accommodation
  • 2 DAYS island hopping (6 islands to visit plus cave tour)
  • full board meals (total of 4 meals)
  • environmental fee
  • tour guide fee
  • island entrance fees
  • free unlimited coffee
  • travel insurance (only when you’re in the boat)

3D2N TOUR | 3 days and 2 nights tour

Price:

  • 2 pax is 2999 per head
  • 3 pax is 2799 per head
  • 4 pax is 2699 per head
  • 5 pax is 2499 per head
  • 6 pax is 2399 per head
  • 7 pax to 2299 per head
  • 8 pax is 2199 per head
  • 9-10 pax is 2099 per head
  • 11 pax to 12 pax up is 1999 per head

Inclusions

  • joiners tour (you will be joining other people who availed of the day tour package)
  • boat service from/to Gigantes back and forth
  • 2 nights accommodation-PRIVATE fan room
  • island-hopping (6 islands to visit plus cave tour)
  • full board meals= total of 6 meals
  • environmental fee
  • tour guide fee
  • island entrance fee
  • free unlimited coffee

Islas de Gigantes DIY

Here’s a few useful information if you’re planning on visiting Islas de Gigantes on a DIY trip. Note that going on a DIY trip can be more expensive than island hopping tours especially if there’s only a few of you.

  • To get to Islas de Gigantes, you first have to ride a passenger boat from Bancal Port to Langub. Don’t forget to register at the Tourism Office and pay the environmental fee.

Boat schedules are as follows:

    • Bancal Port to Langub: 8:30 AM, 1:30 PM and 4:30 PM
    • Langub to Bancal Port: 7:00 AM, 10:30 AM and 3:00 PM

At Langub, you can find several locals offering boats for island hopping.

  • Buy some food and all your necessities before going to Islas de Gigantes since you’ll rarely find a store there.

DIY Expenses

If you’re going on a DIY trip, best prepare for the following expenses.

Accommodation

Most accommodations in Gigantes Island are homestays. Usual prices for fan cottages/rooms are at P200 per person per night. If you prefer airconditioned cottages/rooms, you’ll be paying around P1,500 for each cottage/room which can fit around 2 to 4 persons.

Transportation

  • Iloilo City to Bancal Port – around P200+ per person
  • Roxas City to Bancal Port – around P200+ per person
  • Bancal Port to Langub & Langub to Bancal Port – P300 (adult), P240 (senior citizens and students), P150 (children)

For more information on transportation, please contact 09491311747(smart) or 09053301520 (globe)

Entertainment

  • Bancal Port Environmental Fee – P75 per person
  • Island Hopping – If you’re going to charter a pump boat for an island hopping tour around Gigantes, you’ll have to pay around P1,500 to P2,000 for a boat that’s good for around 10 people. The guide will cost you another P500.
  • Cabugaw Gamay Island – P20 per person (entrance fee)
  • Antonia Beach – P20 per person (entrance fee )
  • Tangke Lagoon – P20 per person (entrance fee )
  • Gigantes Norte Lighthouse – P60 per person (roundtrip motorcycle taxi transfer)
  • Bakwitan Cave Tour – P500 (cave guide) and P200 (roundtrip motorcycle taxi transfer)

Where to Stay in Islas de Gigantes

For day trips, you can either stay in Roxas City, Iloilo City or Carles. But for stays within the islands, you can find several accommodations on Airbnb. Here’s a P2,200 ($44) Airbnb discount on us!

Roxas City

Budget

Midrange

Luxury

Iloilo City

Budget

Midrange

Luxury

Carles

Budget

Midrange

Airbnb (Roxas, Iloilo & Carles)

Aside from hotels and resorts, you can also opt to stay at an Airbnb! You can find here all sorts of accommodations.

Here’s a P2,200 ($44) Airbnb discount on us!

Responsible Travel Tips

When traveling to one place, make sure you practice responsible tourism. Here are some tips to do so.

1. Respect the environment

Don’t litter. Please hold onto your trash until you find a garbage can.

Related: 16 Eco-Friendly Travel Products for the Earth-Loving You

2. Avoid single-use plastic

Bring your eco bag and refuse single-use plastic.

3. Shop local

Keep the traditional crafts alive and support local artisans. Buy from them. And try not to haggle, P20 may seem small to you but it can mean a lot to them.

4. Always ask permission

Be sure to ask for permission first when taking photos or videos especially when it comes to children.

5. Don’t bring home sand and seashells

Take nothing but photos. Removal of seashells can harm the ecosystem and endanger creatures such as hermit crabs. You’ll often also find seashells sold as decorations, ornaments, or keychains. Please avoid supporting these and don’t buy.

What to Pack for Islas de Gigantes

Related Article: The Only Travel Packing List You’ll Ever Need (Trust Me)

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