Ultimate Guide for Budget Traveler and Adventure Seeker

The province of Iloilo is not only rich in culture and history, it's also well-known for its natural structures and white beaches. On...

Gigantes Islands Travel Guide For First Time Travelers

The province of Iloilo is not only rich in culture and history, it's also well-known for its natural structures and white beaches. One of the must-visit destinations in Iloilo is the Gigantes Islands known as Islas de Gigantes ( islands of giants). It is located in the northernmost part of Iloilo province and part of the municipality of Carles, Iloilo, Philippines.


In my recent trip to Iloilo, Las Islas Travel and Tours showed me one of the beautiful gems of the province. The tour started with a short briefing by the DOT-trained professional tour guide. His name is Alfred. He gave us some information about the Gigantes Islands and what to expect on our tour. He was very friendly and accommodating. I like the way he answered all of our questions and interacted to each  of  the joiners.



Islas de Gigantes are blessed with pristine white sand beaches, amazing rock formations,  fresh seafoods (especially scallops) and a lot more. According to the locals, the beauty of the island was only seen by media after the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan, known as Super Typhoon Yolanda.


A visit to Gigantes is not complete without taking an island hopping tour to see its amazing beautiful islands. One of my  favorite islands is the Cabugao Gamay Island also known as Selfie Island. This is the most photographed spot of the Gigantes Group of Islands. It features pristine white sands, turquoise waters and amazing rock formation.



Another spot that's perfect for picture taking is the Tangke Saltwater Lagoon. It's enclosed lagoon surrounded by rock formations that offers a swimming spot with shallow and clear waters. It's advisable to visit here during weekdays. Expect crowds during weekends and holidays.



Pulupandan Islet is the first island where most tourists make a stop. This small and simple island has small cottages which is the resting place of fishermen who go out to sea.



Antonia Beach is the best place to rest and take lunch. You can find here lots of restaurants that offer fresh seafoods especially scallops that cost just 1 peso each. You can also buy here steamed crabs and oysters locally called wasay-wasay. Good thing the package tour offered by  Las Islas Travel and Tours includes lunch with complimentary scallops.



Things to Do

You can do island hopping, swimming, free diving, caving, spelunking, rock climbing, boating, food trip and a lot more. The islands offer a lot of outdoor and water activities that will surely satisfy your Gigantes trip.



Where to stay in Gigantes ( Resorts and Accommodations)

There are lots of budget-friendly accommodation near Gigantes Islands. You can find most of  these resorts in Carles and Estancia.


I stayed in a simple resort called Chateau de Aow. It offers descent rooms with homey vibes surroundings. One of  my favorite spots in the resort is the hammock area. It's the best place to chill and relax while lying on the comfy and colorful hammock.

If you are looking the best resort in Carles, you need stay in Solina Beach and Nature Resort. It is the first and only premium accommodation in Carles, Iloilo that serves as the ideal jumping-off point to the Gigantes Islands. Another resort that you might want to check is the New Beach Head Resort.

How to get to Islas de Gigantes

Land travel from Iloilo to Carles (the jump-off point for boats) can take 3 to 4 hours while only 1 hour and 45 minutes from the Roxas City.

From Iloilo City to Carles

> Travel by air to Iloilo City. Travel time from Manila to Roxas City is more than one hour.
> Take van, taxi or van going to Tagbak Terminal in Jaro district. Travel time is less than 1 hour.
> From the terminal, take a bus or van going to Bancal port in Carles. Fare is P170 – P180 per passenger. Travel time is 3- 4 hours. For van, it will only take 2.5 to 3 hours.

From Capiz City to Carles, Iloilo

> Travel by air to Roxas City, Capiz. Travel time from Manila to Roxas City is almost 1 hour.
> Ride a tricycle going to the Roxas City Integrated Transport Terminal. Fare is about P100 – 150. Travel time is 10-15 minutes.
> Ride a Ceres bus going to Carles and alight in Balasan. Fare in the Ceres bus is P75.  Travel time is about 2 hours.
> Ride a van bound for Carles and alight in Balasan. Travel time by land is about 1 hour 45 minutes. Fare in the van is P65. Trips in the van start from 6 am and ends 6 pm.
> From Balasan, board a tricycle (P50) or motorcyle taxi (habal–habal) (P100-150) directly to the Bancal port in Carles

From Boracay (Caticlan) / Kalibo to Carles, Iloilo City

> Take a bus or van from the Caticlan Port to Kalibo. Travel time is 1.5 to 2 hours.
From Kalibo, board a Ceres liner bus or van to Roxas City. Travel time is 1.5 to 2 hours.
> Ride a tricycle going to the Roxas City Integrated Transport Terminal. Fare is about P100 – 150. Travel time is 10-15 minutes.
> Ride a Ceres bus going to Carles and alight in Balasan. Fare in the Ceres bus is P75.  Travel time is about 2 hours.
> Ride a van bound for Carles and alight in Balasan. Travel time by land is about 1 hour 45 minutes. Fare in the van is P65. Trips in the van start from 6 am and ends 6 pm.
> From Balasan, board a tricycle (P50) or motorcyle taxi (habal–habal) (P100-150) directly to the Bancal port in Carles

3 days and 2 nights Itinerary

Day 1
0700 -0720  Iloilo City to Carles Bus Station bus/van
0720 -1020  ETA Carles- Resort Check-in
1200        Lunch
1400- 1500  Gigantes Norte Lighthouse tour

Day 2
0800 to 1700 Gigantes Island Hopping Tour

Day 3
1000         Resort Check-out
1000-1300 Carles to Tagbak Terminal via bus/van


Islas de Gigantes is a great destination to escape the crowds and busy Metro, where you can just relax and enjoy the simple beach life. You need to include Islas de Gigantes on your next travel adventures.

For hassle-free tour, you may contact Las Islas Travel & Tours. It offers  day tours for as low as Php 999 per head for joiners inclusive of licensed island-hopping boat to Gigantes Islands, DOT-trained professionals, all entrance and environmental fees, seafood lunch by the beach, complimentary steamed scallops and unlimited drinking water. This local travel agency also handles tours all around Panay Island including Capiz, Aklan, Antique and Iloilo. I highly recommend Las Islas Travel & Tours. They are not only offering quality tour packages, they are also DOT accredited travel agency advocating responsible tourism.

Las Islas Travel & Tours

Address: 2nd Floor, Bancal Commercial Building, Bancal Port, Carles, Northern Iloilo, Panay Island, 5019, Philippines
Contact Number: : +63 0995-335-7310 / +63 0929-595-8870 / +63 34 445 1346
Website: http://lasislas.ph/ Email : info@lasislas.ph

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