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Islas de Gigantes, Iloilo

Iloilo Island Hopping Guide: Best Time to Go, How to Go, Where to Stay, Itinerary


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Gigantes Island, Iloilo

Island Hopping Guide: Best Time to Go, How to Go, Where to Stay, Itinerary

    A group of islands, known as Islas de Gigantes, sits within the bounds of the Municipality of Carles in the northern part of mainland Iloilo. It has jade-colored lagoons that are flanked by towering karts and talcum-powder fine sandbars, and it is dotted with palm-fringed islands with stunning rock formations that are lapped by indigo-blue water.

    The island of Gigantes, which is located in a privileged portion of the coral triangle, is home to an abundance of marine resources that come from a wide variety of marine life. Fishing is the primary source of income in this area. It’s the kind of place where you can sit on the beach with your feet in the sand while enjoying some of the freshest seafood you’ve ever had in your life.

    Access to the island of Gigantes can be gained from Iloilo, Roxas City in Capiz, and Aklan (Caticlan and Kalibo). Before continuing with their journey, travelers need to make it to either Carles or Estancia. After that, tourists can take a boat to the Gigantes islands from either the Bancal port or the Estancia port, both of which are accessible from there.

    When is the most pleasant time of year to visit to the island of Gigantes?

    The months of late March through early June, which encompass the summer season, are the ones to visit the most. Check the latest weather reports before proceeding with your trip if you are traveling to do so during the rainy season. This will ensure your safety.

    Electriity in Gigantes

    On the island of Gigantes, resorts and guesthouses normally use generators to provide electricity for their guests, and there is a specific time of the day when the electricity is on depending on where you are staying. Make sure that all of your electronic devices, including your camera, are charged before the power goes off. As a friendly suggestion, you should also bring fully charged portable battery packs.


    There is no automated teller machine (ATM) located on the island of Gigantes. You should stock up on cash before going on your trip to Gigantes island because cash is the only form of payment accepted there. There is a good selection of automated teller machines (ATMs) in the cities of Roxas, Kalibo, and Iloilo.

    Safety & Security

    Safety on the island of Gigantes: The island of Gigantes is a safe destination for tourists. However, in order to avoid any mishaps, please make sure to follow and respect the local norms. For your own protection, you should always make sure to wear a life jacket while you’re island hopping. However, in the event of an emergency, the big hospitals are quite a distance away. You will need to travel your way to one of the country’s major cities, such as Roxas or Iloilo.

    Instructions on how to reach the island of Gigantes

    Gigantes island is located in Carles town, which is found in the northern part of mainland Iloilo. There are nonstop flights that can fly you to Roxas (Capiz), Iloilo, or Caticlan. Then you should make your way to either the Bancal port (which will take you Gigantes Norte island in 1.5 hours) or the Estancia port (2 hours to Gigantes island). Since Bancal port is located somewhat nearer to the island of Gigantes, many people choose to depart from there.

    From Roxas, Capiz to the Gigantes Island

    When compared to Iloilo or Caticlan, the airport in Roxas City, which is located in the Philippine province of Capiz, is the clear winner in terms of proximity to Port of Bancal, in Carles, the port from which trips to Gigantes island depart.

    • Fly a plane to the airport in Roxas. There are multiple airlines that fly to Roxas from Manila, Clark, and Cebu.
    • You may reach the Roxas City Integrated Bus Terminal by taking a tricycle there. The fare is approximately PhP 150. The travel time is approximately ten to fifteen minutes.
    • To go to Estancia, you can either take a van for 65 pesos or a Ceres bus for 75 pesos. Travel time ranges from approximately 1.5 to 2 hours. The first trip leaves at 6:00 a.m., while the last trip leaves at 6:00 pm
    • In the event that you decide to use the van, you will be dropped off straight at the port of Bancal. If, on the other hand, you decide to take the bus, once you get off at the Balasan, you will need to take a tricycle to Bancal Port in Carles for 50 per person (usually all seats need to be occupied, or charter a tricycle) or a habal-habal or motorbike for 100.
    • Bancal port is the most popular departure point for trips to Gigantes island. The travel time is approximately half an hour.
    • At the port of Bancal, pay the 75 environmental fee that is due to the tourism office.
    • There are a few different options to reach Gigantes island when departing from either the Bancal port or the Estancia port. The travel time is around one and a half hours.

    Gigantes island can be navigated through a private boat tour, which can be arranged through a charter service. You have the option of going to Gigantes island as part of a group tour.

    You may ride the passenger boat from Bancal port or Estancia port all the way to Lango beach in Gigantes Norte, which is where the majority of the homestays are located. After that, you will be able to hire a boat from that location and go island hopping around Gigantes island. The passenger boat departs the port of Bancal at ten in the morning and arrives at Gigantes Norte around eleven thirty in the morning. The same boat then leaves for the port of Bancal at 2:00 in the pm and arrives at 3:30 in the pm. The fare is 100 pesos, and the travel time is around one hour.

    A public boat leaves the Estancia port towards Gigantes Norte every day at 1:00 pm. The fare is $80 and the travel time is approximately 2 hours. At one in the pm, the same boat sails from Gigantes Norte to the Estancia port. If you choose this option, you will need to spend at least two to three days in Gigantes Norte and spend the rest of your time island-hopping around Gigantes.

    You have the option of taking the rapid shuttle from the port of Bancal to Gigantes Norte in the event that you miss the public boat. The fare is 300 pesos. The following is the schedule:

    • 7:00 am, 10:00 am, 3:00 pm, and 4:30 pm, Monday through Thursday
    • From Friday through Sunday, the hours will be 8:30 am and 12:30 pm

    Take a public boat to Lango beach in Gigantes Norte, and from there, hire a boat to take you to either Antonia beach or Cabugao Gamay island, where you can spend the night. If you want to do this, the first thing you should do is get to Lago beach in Gigantes Norte (see the directions above for how to get there), and then from there, you may hire a boat to carry you to the island where you want to spend the night. You are going to need to rent a boat in order to go island hopping in Gigantes.

    Iloilo to Gigantes island

    You can also fly to the Iloilo airport without making a stop if you are coming from Manila, Clark, or Cebu. You can also fly directly to Iloilo from Singapore or Kuala Lumpur (in Malaysia) by coming to Manila on the way there. Iloilo is located further away than Roxas; nevertheless, there are more flights to Iloilo, and these flights are at a lower cost. If you decide to go with this alternative, below are the directions you need to follow to get to the island of Gigantes from Iloilo City:

    • Fly a flight to the international airport in Iloilo.
    • To get to the city of Iloilo from the Iloilo airport, you can take a bus or a van.
    • To get to the Tagbak terminal in Jaro, Iloilo, take a taxi or a jeepney.
    • Take a van (for 200 ceros) or a ceres bus (for 190 ceros) to Estancia or Carles. The time spent traveling is around three to four hours.
    • Get off the bus at Balasan, Estancia, and take a tricycle (the fare is 50 pesos) or a habal-habal or motorcycle (the fare is 100–150 pesos) to the Bancal port in Carles.
    • You can pay the environmental charge of 75 yen at the tourism office located in Bancal port.

    To reach the island of Gigantes, there are a few different options that can be taken from the port of Bancal. The travel time is around one and a half hours:
    Join a guided group to the island of Gigantes.

    If you want to go island hopping on Gigantes island, you should hire a boat. Those who are interested in doing their own Gigantes island trip will find this to be a fantastic resource.

    Or ride the public boat from Bancal port or Estancia port to Lango beach in Gigantes Norte. You’ll find a variety of homestays along this stretch of beach. You may hop from island to island in the Gigantes Archipelago by chartering a boat at Gigantes Norte.

    The public boat leaves the port of Bancal around 10:00 in the morning and arrives at Gigantes Norte at approximately 11:30 the morning. The same boat departs for the port of Bancal at 2:00 pm and arrives at 3:30 pm on the same day. In addition, a public boat leaves the port of Estancia towards Gigantes Norte at one in the pm. You will need at least two or three days to stay in Gigantes Norte and travel to the several islands that make up Gigantes.

    If you are too late to catch the public boat, you can pay 300 yen to ride the shuttle express that operates between the port of Bancal and Gigantes Norte. The following is the schedule:

    • The hours of 7:00 am, 10:00 am, 3:00 pm, and 4:30 pm, Monday through Thursday
    • From Friday through Sunday, the hours will be 8:30 am and 12:30 pm

    To go to Antonia island or Cabugao Gamay island for your overnight stay, take a public boat to Lango beach in Gigantes Norte and then charter a boat from there. If you decide to spend the night on one of these islands, you will need to take a public boat to Lago beach in Gigantes Norte (see the directions given above for more information on how to get there), and then hire a private boat to take you to the island where you will be spending the night. You are going to need to charter a boat in order to go island hopping on Gigantes island.

    Caticlan/Kalibo A travel guide beginning in Aklan and ending on the island of Gigantes

    Boracay, Caticlan, and Kalibo are all good starting points for a day trip to Gigantes island. However, it does require some transfers. How to do it:

    • To go to Kalibo from Caticlan, you can ride a bus or an airport transfer. The travel takes roughly two hours of your time.
    • After arriving in Kalibo, take a bus or van to Roxas City in the province of Capiz.
    • You should get off at the Roxas integrated bus station.
    • Ride a bus or van to Carles or Estancia.

    Getting around on the island of Gigantes

    You have the option of going on an independent tour of Gigantes island or participating in a group tour package for island hopping around Gigantes.

    • A tour of the Gigantes island group (private or join in). In the majority of cases, lunch, water, admission fees, and a tour guide are already included in the Gigantes island hopping package.
    • Rent a boat at Bancal port or Estancia port. You can choose to do it on your own, in which case you can rent a boat. It is recommended that you do this with a group of at least four people so that you may share the cost of the boat rental, the guide price, and the entrance costs.

    Boat rental on Gigantes Island and associated fees

    • Price for a small boat for up to 10 people is ₱3,500.
    • The cost for a medium boat with 11 to 15 passengers is ₱5,000.
    • Large boat for 16 to 30 people costs ₱6,000.


    • Guide fee – ₱500
    • Environmental fee – ₱75

    Entrance Fees

    • The island of Antonia – 40
    • Tangke Lagoon – ₱20
    • Cabugao Gamay – ₱50

    To go to Gigantes Norte, take the public boat from Bancal or Estancia Ports

    If you want to spend the night in Gigantes Norte, which is where the vast majority of homestays are located, here is the schedule for the public boat that will take you there from Bancal port and Estancia port. After that, hire a boat to go island hopping around Gigantes island, which you can do from there.

    Important: Before proceeding forward, make sure that you have allowed the environmental fee, since the caretakers on the islands that you will be visiting when island hopping in Gigantes may ask to see your ticket for the environmental fee before allowing you to enter the island.

    • Bancal port to Gigantes Norte, departing at 10:00 a.m., with a cost of 100 pesos per head
    • Gigantes Norte to Bancal port, departing at 2:00 pm, costs one hundred pesos per head.
    • Estancia port to Gigantes Norte – ₱80 per head, departing at 01:00 pm
    • Gigantes Norte to Estancia port – ₱80 per head

    On the island of Gigantes, these are some of the places you can visit

    The island of Gigantes is characterized by its spectacular limestone cliffs, its palm-fringed sand that is caressed by a whirling mix of turquoise sea, and other clichés of tropical island life. Travelers who take things more or less at their own pace may appreciate the laid-back activities available here. The following is a list of some of the most well-known tourist destinations that can be found on the island of Gigantes and are frequently included on island-hopping tours:

    Bantigue Sandbar

    • Free is the cost to enter.
    • This natural splendor is only visible when the tide is low. My favorite time to visit Bantigue island is right before sunset, when the orange light casts a more dramatic glow across the sandbar. However, for the vast majority of Gigantes island package trips, this location is typically the first stop. This is likely due to the turbulent waves and the powerful current that are present in the afternoon.

    Antonia Beach

    • The fee to enter is ₱40.
    • The cost of renting a tent for two people is ₱250.
    • Another well-liked island for vacationers on Gigantes is the island of Antonia. The sea is turquoise, and the sand is gritty and white colored. In this location, you can also climb the rock formations to get a better view of the area. The island of Gigantes, is the ideal location for snorkeling. In the event that you neglected to bring your own snorkeling equipment with you, you can rent goggles for ₱50 and snorkeling gear for ₱100.
    • In addition to this, Antonia island is well-known for its reasonably priced seafood. You can splurge on scallops at a price of ₱1 for each piece, and rough oysters at a price of ₱200 for a strainer.
    • This location permits camping as well as overnight stays. Tent rentals come complete with foam and mattresses and cost ₱250 per person. There is also the option of staying in a fan room that is housed in nipa huts, which costs ₱800 per night for two people and ₱1,200 for four people.

    Tangke Lagoon

    • The entry price is ₱20.
    • My thoughts immediately went to Coron, El Nido, and Caramoan after I saw Tangke Lagoon. You know the kind of place I’m talking about, where the water in the lagoon is a gorgeous blend of green and turquoise, and it’s surrounded by these towering karts. It is the ideal place for taking pictures of Gigantes island and flying your drone, but you need to exercise extreme caution because you could collide with the karts.

    Cabugao Gamay

    • The charge to enter is ₱50.
    • The powdery white island is Gigantes island’s poster boy. It is the one with the limestone cliff on the left side overlooking the palm tree-punctuated sand with a backdrop of a forest-fringed hill on the other side.
    • At this location, tourists have the opportunity to climb up the limestone cliff using the stairs, which affords them a magnificent view of the island below. In addition to that, there is a collection of zen stones on the beach. It is recommended that swimmers come here since the water is so incredibly clear, and this is the kind of laid-back beach that travelers adore.

    Pulo pandan

    • Free is the cost to enter.
    • Nipa huts were constructed on this powdery white sand islet because it is used as a resting place for the fisherman who works on Gigantes island. The only tree on the island is a solitary coconut palm, and the continuous surf beats against granite formations.

    Itinerary for Gigantes Island Tour

    This page includes a sample itinerary for the island of Gigantes as well as a sample budget for the trip. It is important to note that the example spending plan does not cover the cost of airfare, transportation between your home city and Carles, hotel accommodations, souvenirs, or beverages.

    When traveling in groups of three or four people, it is possible to split certain costs with your companions, such as the fare of the ride on the tricycle.

    Day 1 costs come to a total of ₱575

    • The city of Eta Roxas in Capiz
    • The fare for a tricycle to get to the integrated bus station in Roxas City is 150 pesos.
    • Van to Estancia or Carles – ₱75
    • Get out at Balasan, and for 150 you can ride a tricycle around the area.
    • Hotel check-in Dinner – ₱200

    Day 2 costs is ₱1,299

    • 06:00 am – breakfast – ₱100
    • Join a joiner’s tour package for only 999 yen at 07:00 in the morning (inclusive of entrance fees, tour guide, boat ride, lunch, etc.)
    • The island-hopping trip of the Gigantes begins at 8:00 in the morning.
    • 5:00 pm marks the end of your island hopping island in Gigantes.
    • Dinner – ₱200

    Day 3 brings an additional ₱375

    • 06:00 am – breakfast – ₱100
    • Check out is at 7:00 am, and the tricycle will take you to the Estancia bus terminal. 200 per person for the bus or van ride back to Roxas City. ₱75
    • Departure for Manila


    The total amount spent was 2,249.

    This does not include the cost of the aircraft ticket, hotel accommodation, or any other personal expenses.


    Travel Advice and Reminders for the Island of Gigantes Travel

    • Because renting a boat to go from island to island in the Gigantes archipelago is fairly pricey, it is advisable to go on this excursion in groups consisting of at least four people.
    • If you are traveling by yourself, your best bet is to join up for a group trip. Weekends are the greatest time to do this because you are more likely to join other travelers.
    • Please remember to bring lunch for both your boatman and your guide if you are doing a do-it-yourself tour of Gigantes island. Tipping is also encouraged when appropriate.
    • Before proceeding anywhere, it is imperative that you check the latest weather reports. When taking on a boat or swimming, always make sure to use a life jacket.
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    Ultimate Travel Guide

    The eastern part of the province is home to the stunning Islas de Gigantes. North Gigante Island, South Gigante Island, Cabugao Grande Island, Cabugao Gamay Island, and Bantigue Islet are all part of this archipelago.

    We took a van from Iloilo City Proper to Bancal, in the town of Carless, where the port for the islands is located. The drive took us via both mountainous and flat regions of Panay Island. When we left, it was sunny and clear, and we anticipated a pleasant day, but as soon as we arrived in Carles, it began to rain heavily.

    A storm is on the horizon, as seen by the dense, dark clouds. However, that did not prevent us from continuing on with our journey. Strong winds began to blow, and the waves became intense enough that we could feel the strain they put on our boat’s floats. The situation is analogous to riding a roller coaster without a seat belt. I don’t think I’ve ever been on a boat ride quite like this one, which is both thrilling and terrifying.

    Gigantes Nort

    An hour of zigzagging through the waves arrived us to Gigantes Norte, where we made our hotel reservations. For the night before our island hopping adventure, we stayed there. Despite the threat of heavy rain, we decided to swim in the ocean in front of the resort. The beach has white sand and crystal clear water. Our meal that night had scallops as the primary attraction. To that end, tomorrow’s forecast calls for better weather. While we were sleeping, we prayed to the heavens for help, and when we awoke, we found that our request had been granted. There was sunshine today!

    Antonia Beach

    Antonia Beach is unique in that it offers two mirrored views of the ocean around the island. Here you may observe beautiful rock formations made of limestone on a beach.
    A great place to kick back and take in the breathtaking scenery is at Antonia Beach. This magnificent beach is located in a remote part of Gigantes Sur; the sand is pure white and the atmosphere is spotless, and the ocean is a stunning turquoise. It’s hard to imagine a more perfect spot for snorkeling, swimming, camping, and beach.

    Cabugao Gamay

    In the group of islands known as the Islas de Gigantes, Cabugao Gamay is by far the most visited. Instagrammers and vacationers alike may see it all over the internet. The island’s beauty extends from the limestone rock formations inland to the white sand beaches and tropical trees along the coast, and out to the clear turquoise waters surrounding the island, which may be viewed from a viewing point that is accessible to all visitors. You’ll wish you were marooned on one island instead of another.
    Never let your phone die while visiting the Islas de Gigantes; else, you can miss out on a life-changing event. Selfies are not only permitted but encouraged while visiting the islands. Climb the giant rocks for an unparalleled panorama of the islands’ stunning scenery.

    Bantique Sandbar

    Bantigue Island is famous for its white sand sandbar and the spectacular waves that smash onto it. We took stock of the situation and expressed appreciation for the calm we were enjoying. We enjoyed lunch in a cozy cabin before we left the islet. The delicious scallops were served one more. A basket of scallops and assorted seafood was our dinner.

    Tangke Lagoon

    An idyllic saltwater lagoon, the Tangke Salt Water Lagoon can be found tucked away behind the cliffs of the Gigantes Islands. Along the coast of Gigantes Sur, hidden among sheer rock cliffs, is a lovely lagoon.

    Kalibo to Gigantes Island