Guimaras: The land of the Mangoes and oil spill

Monday, October 30, 2006

How to get there:
Take a plane to Iloilo. Ride a ferry boat for just 30mins and viola! Guimaras.

This place is not much of a tourist destination. They have mountains, lighthouses, beaches and a lot of sweet, yummy mangoes. We went there as an Eco-group that wanted to see first-hand the effects of the oil spill to the communities. It was sad to see them greatly affected since the main livelihood in this island is fishing. Nevertheless, the island is still intact and the people have managed to find other means to make money like Mango-farming.

Affected areas.

Despite the oil-spill the island was gorgeous. It was a little hard to go around since jeepneys were the only mode of transportation. Plus, if you wanted to visit the beaches, you had to make special arrangements.

Look at the view! Magnificent!
We stayed in a hotel called Valle Verde Mountain Resort. It was on top of a mountain and they had a swimming pool. There is also a trek about 20mins to a lagoon. Felt like one of the mermaids of Peter Pan. They provided cheap accommodations and great food too.
Peter Pan's lagoon.

Pet turtle?

The black stuff under the trees is oil. We could see it because of the low tide.
We visited quite a number of barangay halls to know more about the oil spill. But we also visited the beaches and it was beautiful too. The sand was not that fine but there were almost no people in the area so I loved it. We also visited the National Mango Research and Development Center. Too bad is wasn't harvest season yet so we couldn't take home free mangoes.

Soon, this place will develop and there will be more livelihood for the locals here. Visit the island!
Nice sunset.


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