Weekend in Jomalig Island, Quezon

Raindrops trickled down through the holes in the tarpaulin that served as the roof of the boat, forming a puddle right next to me  and waking me up from my sleep. “Duct tape,” I mentally added to my list of things I should always bring on a trip, as I moved my bag and huddled in the center of the boat with the rest of the people on the boat.

jomalig quezon beach boats

We were two hours in to the six-hour long boat ride from Real, Quezon to the island of Jomalig, our destination for a “beach-bumming and BBQ party” weekend to celebrate a friend’s birthday. But the ominous grey clouds in the horizon didn’t look too promising. I usually have no problem sleeping on long rides, except the weather was really fickle that day, alternating between stifling heat and bouts of heavy rain. It didn’t help that we had been on the road since 11 pm the previous night & had been waiting at the port since 2 in the morning. The boat ride seemed to stretch forever.

jomalig quezon camping tent hammock

It was still raining when we got to the island. Our first couple of hours there were spent taking shelter in the porch of a local’s cottage and setting up camp on damp grounds.

Thankfully, the weather cleared up in the afternoon and the next day, revealing the
island’s true beauty. Despite the long trip, the island was so worth it.

jomalig quezon cove beach swimmingjomalig quezon boat kids swimmingjomalig quezon local kids on beach jomalig quezon local kids portrait

Jomalig is one of those places that’s so near yet so far. It’s officially part of Quezon province, which is often overlooked by travelers because of its proximity to Manila. The jump off point to the island is in Real, which is 3 hours away from Manila by private van. Then there’s the 6-hour long boat ride on a cargo vessel through open seas. Jomalig lies on the far end of the Polillo Group of Islands on the extreme west of the Pacific Ocean. I heard the private island of Balesin is also somewhere in the vicinity.

jomalig quezon shore boat

The main beach of Salibungot is where we set up camp and spent a lovely Saturday afternoon. To the right of our camp, the shore was dotted with colorful fishing boats. To the left, there was a picturesque cove fringed by pine-like Agoho Trees. I spent most of the afternoon sleeping in a hammock under the trees. Beach-bumming at its finest.

Later in the afternoon, I took a dip in the water then walked along the long stretch of beach to catch the sunset. Through the clouds, the sun painted the sky shades of pink and purple, casting a glow on the dune-like formations of the pinkish-golden sand. It was a lovely sunset.

jomalig quezon sunset sandjomalig quezon sunset boatjomalig quezon sunset skimboard

The next morning, some of us got to visit Kanaway Sandbar in another part of the island, gliding through insanely clear turquoise water as flying fish jumped in the distance. On  the way back, we got a good view of the pine-like trees fringing the island’s creamy shore.

jomalig quezon boat to kanaway sandbarjomalig quezon boat skimboardjomalig quezon kanaway sandbar travelupjomalig quezon jumpshotjomalig quezon boat agoho trees shore

The food. Oh the food. While I enjoyed the “beach-bumming part”, I have even higher regards for the “BBQ party” part of the trip. My most fond memory of the weekend was feasting on freshly caught and grilled seafood. Lots of it.

jomalig quezon cooking bbq squid fishThanks to the group’s chef Arvin, I got my fill of fresh sashimi and kinilaw from an 11-kilo tanigue he bought that day from locals. Our first meal on the island consisted of grilled squid, fish, grilled eggplant and pako (fern) salad served on banana leaves and eaten with our bare hands – which is the the best way to enjoy beach food in my opinion. For dinner, the rest of the tanigue was grilled, along with chicken and liempo. For dessert there was fresh watermelon and a “surprise” concoction of pumpkin and mango in condensed milk.

jomalig quezon tanigue sashimi

jomalig quezon kinilaw

jomalig quezon boodle fight

On the boat ride back, we feasted on squid cooked in coconut milk, with more fried squid and dilis with green mango and chili for pulutan over lambanog. One lesson I learned from the trip: long boat rides are faster when lambanog is involved.

jomalig quezon boat group shotWe got back to Manila past 11 in the evening on Sunday, with many in the group lamenting the fact that they had work the next day. But all in all, not a bad way to spend the weekend. 🙂

Photo credits: Group photo of boodle fight by Jun Villegas of Smart Backpacker; group photo in boat by Duane; grabbed from Facebook. 


READ MORE: For a detailed guide including how to get there, rates & other useful info, check out Travel Guide: Jomalig Island

67 thoughts on “Weekend in Jomalig Island, Quezon

  1. Pingback: Weekend in Jomalig Island, Quezon | Philippine ...

  2. been there wayback Jan 2011 and I’ve experienced the same scenario. Feeling ko ganun talaga ang boat ride papunta dun dahil nga dadaan pa sya ng pacific ocean. I celebrated my birthday with a friend at ayun standed for 5 days dahil may typhoon. Anyway, just wanna share my experience and I’m missin the island so much as well as jomalig’s community. Nice story. Galing talaga ni james 🙂

  3. Additional Info: there is another jump off point which is the most common particularly when you’re coming from The Quezon’s Capital. It is Atimonan Quezon. Most of the people of the island use Atimonan as their preferred jump off point. It is more developed and urbanized than Real Quezon. Travel will take you leas than 2 hrs from Lucena city.

  4. Camping pa rin ba until now o meron nang marerent na mga cottages or may resort na etc? Do we need to bring our own food/water or may mabibili naman dun? my friends and I are planning to go there sa february.. any idea what’s the best months to go there para walang typhoon?

  5. Hey guys! thank you for visiting my home town. i read comments above and some were asking about how to get there and what is the best month to travel. let me answer those questions.

    1) if you are on a tight budget go to St. Raymond Station in Legarda Manila, I think its P 200. 00 one way, simply tell the conductor to drop you off to Ungos Port, ( boats going to Jomalig are usually there waiting for the fish dealer coming from Malabon. ) they are bound to either Barangay Apad, Bukal, or Moros. ) If you are heading to Salibungot beach, boat to Moros is the best option, If heading to Kanaway, Boat to Brgy. Apad is best. Brgy. Bukal is in between Brgy. Moros and Apad, so its still relatively close to either attractions. ( lets say 30 mins motor bike ride? ) 😛

    2) Vans, There are Vans going to real Quezon just along Legarda street in manila, just infront of St. Raymond Station, they are originally bound to Infanta quezon but they will drive pass Real so you can also take that van ride. its P 220.00 per head por 250 during the peak season. Just tell the driver to drop you off Ungos port, “Kay Michael Tapado ” thats my uncle, he owns an ice dealer at the port area and most of the van drivers knows him, so you will not get lost. he also owns the tiny hut by the port where passengers bound to Jomalig are waiting.

    If not renting a boat and traveling on your own or even a group its 300 pesos each and 5 pesos or 10 pesos each reasonable size luggage or whattever things you are carrying.

    Some boat serves lunch, some do not. bringging your own baon is always handy. ( water, food, snacks, and jokes) you’ll need those for a 6 hours boat ride. lol locals are always in for a little chit chat and lots of laughs!

    ok, now lets talk about the best months to travel, Best months are Summer time, ” March, April, May, to be precise. bec the waves are relatively small and the chance of having a rough ride is less.

    but the best of the best is April and May because there are festivities and you have a chance of having the best time dancing your whole night @ the town plaza.

    • hi can you help me kung sino may contact number to get jomalig island we plan to go there sa holy week thanks

      • The last time I went to Ungos Port, someone said there’s a boat going directly to Jomalig, it leaves 7am daw. When are you going?

      • hi me & my friend will be at jomalig on holy week, available ang boat on april 2 aalis ng real quezon port 7am, i’ve talk to maam malou from jomalig tourism


        • Hi Cheche,

          We are also planning to go there on Holy Week 🙂 May I have your number please and Ms. Malou of Jomalig Tourism?

          • hi maam vanessa my number 0927-3745040 and ms. malou’s number 0929-9573655, its better if you can call ms. malou i think she’s counting all the possible passenger of the boat 1st trip is 7am.

            thanks po

  6. best dates are April 27 to 28 ( town fiesta of brgy Apad) May 4 or 5 town fiesta of brgy. Gango, May 14 to 15 town fiesta of brgy. Bukal and May 18, 19, 20. Town fiesta of the capital town of Talisoy. thats 30 mins wlk from Salibungot Beach 🙂 ” best tip ” you can go to the municipal hall and ask an audience with the municipal mayor, he will be more than happy to be your host and accept you as a gfuest in his house. ” free accomodation. ” But during town fiestas most houses have plenty of food,and each of them are open to visitors, you can just simply walk in and ask for food, they will be more than happy to feed you.

    As for accomodation,

    you can go to Dos Paa’s owned by mr. Tejada its near the port so you can spot it easily.

    I’m not sure if my parents will also welcome visitors, they own two nipa huts just beside our humble house near the church in brgy. talisoy, its not anything fancy but can be comfy enough to sleep in during the night, its just a nipa hut with double deck papag, own toilet and running water. not sure though if they will charge you for using the hut its originally for highschool students during school months. when i was there it was P 100 pesos per head a month. lol kindly Ask Baby Lopez.

    Or you can simply bring your own tent, locals are friendly enough to let you sleep peacefully on the beach.

    Seafood is widely available, meat is available once or twice a week, fruits like bananas are widely available too. or you can just simply do a quick shopping in real for fruits. there are bottled water in stores from 6 litres to 200 ml. ranging from 100 to 10 pesos.

    I forgot to mention, taking the boat in Atimonan is way better as there are bigger boats there and a big chance of not beeing squeezed in. all boats bound to jomalig in atimonan are going to Brgy. Talisoy or Brgy. Moros, take MB Nicole or Mary Rose, or just ask the guys at the port area which boats are heading to Jomalig.

    Going to Atimonan, catch the bus from Kamias or Cubao, either Jac or Jam transit bound to grand central terminal in Lucena city. its 250 per head, then take another bus or jeepney going to Atimonan 75 pesos. Once in Atimonan, take a trike or ask for direction to the old port, most boats going to Jomalig are there or go to Island Link General merchandise the owner is from Jomalig and regular shoppers are from jomalig. the owner also owns MB Mary Rose if im not mistaken.

  7. Hello.. We’re planning a year end trip to this promising island. Is it safe to travel during December? I know you’ve clearly suggested the Summer months but I think, we can’t wait. Can the waves be like those of Calaguas? Thank you! 🙂

  8. Hi maam Gracy Henderson,

    Pwede po bang makakuha ng contact number ng boat for rent from Quezon port to Jomalig Island? paki pm po sa number na ito 0921-464-6630. Thank you in advance.

  9. Hi Guys,

    Travel to Jomalig during the months of Nov – Dec- Jan is always expected to be rough. but there are still boats coming and going to and out of the island but prepare to be stranded for a couple of days as weather during those onths are always unpredectable.

    As of now i dont have a number of any boat owners in Jomalig but try to contact Rico Candelaria on facebook his brother in law Nick Rafael owns MB Nicole. he might give you the owners contact number.

    • You think it would be safe to travel alone to Jomalig? around end of October? I am planning for a solo trip this year. Originally I planned to go to alabat island, but seeing Jomalig… i have to change route 🙂 Golden sands in the morning turning pink in sunset.. I have to see this and capture it in photos 🙂

      • People of the island are nice and friendly, so lone travellers are safe, the only thing that might not make you safe is the rough travel by boat, bec of the ever changing weather and the huge waves during the month of October to Dec. i haven’t heard of a boat from Jomalig Sinking or capcizing in a long time bec the boats they are using now are way bigger, but its always good to be cautious and its much more enjoyable to travel when you dont feel like you’re ready to throw up any time soon right? Summer is coming, why not go there during summer time?

        • Hello Miss Gracy! 🙂 Is it safe for a solo lady to camp by the beach? I plan to visit Jomalig anytime this month. I am not sure if I can bring a friend. Thanks.

          • Hi Jane, I never heard of someone being molested there, but its still great to be always on your guard. just bring some stuff that might make you feel safe if you decide to camp out on the beach by your self.

          • Hi Jane,

            Just want to as if natuloy ka sa solo travel mo going to Jomalig. Hope you could give me some tips. Am also planning to go to Jomalig alone.


          • Hi Nikki!
            Yes, Natuloy ako. May kakilala yung kasama ko sa loob kaya wala kaming masyadong expenses. Nandito na lahat ng tips medyo disappointed lang ako sa ibang turista na nagpunta duon, hindi resort yung lugar na pinunpuntahan nila importante na iuwi nila ang kalat nila dahil wala silang tagalinis dun, nakakahiya naman na nakigamit na nga sila ng beach ng libre tapos nagkakalat pa. I hope yung mga nagbabasa dito eh mabasa din ito. Ang ganda ng Jomalig Island nalibot ko na ang buong isla panatilihin sana natin ang ganda nito.

    • hi ms.gracey!magkano po ang rental fee ng boat papuntang jomalig island? pede ba mag overnight stay dun?

  10. Hi, as a teenager I have been to several Islands in the Philippines but Jomalig stands out because it has the most beautiful beach and hospitable , friendly people that I have been to . I remember going to Casiguran with my mother and it was their town fiesta. Now that I am older ( 57 yrs. old ) going back there is in my ” To Do List ,” I always tell my husband my memories from those vacations. Can you please tell me when and how is the best time to visit Jomalig especially Casiguran. Thanks

    • Kindly read the comments above, all details are there na po. Casiguran’s town Fiesta is June 18 and 19 every year, so that’s he best time to go, though travel by boat might be extra rough.

  11. hi, sino po pwede contact dun kc i and my frens are planning to go in Jomalig ISland this march po we have private autos meron po ba parking dun sa port at mag bayad nalang and if safe po? may nipa hut po ba dun pagdating and how much po? thanks

    • Hi Irene. Check out this Travel Guide post. There’s a contact person listed there. You can also read the rest of the comments section, a local named Gracy commented that her parents own nipa huts on the shore. I’m not sure how much the huts will cost. You can also opt to bring your own tents and camp for a minimal fee. The port in Real, Quezon is not that big, but our hired vans were able to park at the side of the road. You might also want to get in touch with Tourism Jomalig for other inquiries.

  12. The Salibungot Beach is the best! It’s really serene and isolated. It’s a freedom haven.







    You can check out some photos of our coverage of Jomalig here, as well: http://travelibre.com/attractions/salibungot-beach-in-jomalig/241

  13. hi there. last holy week, me and my friends did our first motorcycle ride together and went to real and infanta. we enjoyed the trip so much and then later on realized that it felt kind of “bitin” thus found ourselves having talks about going back there on May. we have a friend who lives in infanta and basically that’s the destination that was on our mind. but seeing how wonderful this island is gets me really excited and i really want to have a chance to visit there. do you think we can ride our way to ungos port and have our motorbikes parked there? is there a place for that in the port? or do you suppose we should just leave our motorbikes in our friend’s house and just go on public transportation to real? is it going to be a costy trip?? many thanks and God Bless! 🙂

    • Hi Rafael. The port in Real is kind of small. It’s actually just a house with a wharf, so I don’t think there’s space to park a lot of motorcycles. I think you should just park at your friend’s house to be safe. As for the cost, check out the rest of the comments section for a budget breakdown (fare for boats, etc.). I’d say Jomalig is a backpacker and budget-friendly place. I guess it depends if you’re bringing lots of food to cook there, and if you plan to rent a boat for island-hopping within Jomalig, but rates are affordable if you’re in a big group. Since your group rides, you might want to join Wrangler’s True Wanderer campaign. Check out the details here.

  14. Hello!

    My friends and I are interested in going to Jomalig Island this April 23-27. And I was hoping you can enlighten us with our questions..

    1) If ever we missed the local boat going to Jomalig from Ungos Port, how much will be the estimated cost to hire private boat? We tried contacting Ms. Malou about the possible schedule of passenger boat going to the island but we never got a response.

    2) How much is tent pitching in Salibungot Beach?

    3) If ever we decided to stay with the Tejada’s how far is it from the beach?

    4) Aside from Salibungot Beach and Kanaway Beach, what are the other sites to visit?

    5) How far is the local store (if ever we ran out of supplies)? Is it accessible by foot or do we need to hire tricycle to get there? How much is the estimated cost?

    Thanks in advance to anyone who will answer our questions!

    More power to Miss Kara and other bloggers who inspire us to explore hidden treasures around the country!

    • Hi,
      If you missed a boat from Jomalig, ride a boat from patnanungan island, its a nighboring island, if you are 10 above they will be more than willing to drop you of Jomalig island, its like 30 mins away they might ask additional 50 pesos per person. 300 pesos from real to Patnanungan.

      Hiring your boat varies on the size of the boat, it might coast you from 10 to 25k. napa ka layo po kasi.

      I believe tent pitching is free of charge, but i also believe that the ‘ sort of’ tourism fee is 10 pesos per person. just dromp by the municipl building. its about 15 mins walk from Talisoy port.

      If you decide to stay at the Tejadas its less than 5 mins away from the beach. their old cottages are off the Talisoy port. but their newly constructed ones are in Salibungot. from the port to Salibungot might be 20 mins walk. cottages is just a stone throw away from the beach.

      Aside from Salibungot and Kanaway beaches, you can go to Manlanat by boat. its a small island full of birds. or go to Casuguran the last time i was there there are beach huts being constructed. an hour walk from brgy. talisoy. or go to the old ranch 25 mins away from casuguran and go foraging for guavas.

      In salibungot there are little sari – sari stores. but bigger ones are in Talisoy, 30 mins walk. there are no regular trips of tricycles or motor bikes. but you can rent a motor bike for 500 a day.

  15. Hi, im andie ms gracy. me and my bf are planning to go in your hometown., actually it was just me who really wanted to go there, im planning these week, does your parents still accomodating guests.

  16. we are palnning to go there in may 8. we planned to stay there for 3 days. and we are almost 25 persons. what is better to do? camping or stay in tejada resort? what beach is the most beautiful? thanks . how much is the boat transfer to other beaches?

  17. Hi Guys,

    Just a couple of questions I just want to ask.. If we do opt for pitching a tent by the beach..
    1. malamok po ba sa area?
    2. Is their a shade by the beach na masilungan? a shadey area?
    3. Meron ba kami pwede magamit na CR na pwede mapag anlawan/liguan? toilet?

    lastly, are the boats going there public boats (pampasehero) or private (you have to hire the whole boat?)?



    • Hi actually dapat umaga palang dapat asa real quezon na kayu to get a boat like 4am to 5am, papuntang jumalig yun, hopefully u can go there this may 23,24,25 26. mag camp out kasi kami sa salibungot beach at sa iba pang lugar dun.. as much as possible dapat straight ang byahe from real to jumalig, kasi kapag hindi 2 rides pa at mappamahal pa… hope this helps..

    • oh, I haven’t even thought about that.
      Anyway, in my search for more information about jomalig. There is an airstrip and I found out that you can charter private planes going there, however they are expensive. the owner of the charter planes going there also have an Inn or something at jomalig. I tried msging him in his FB but he never bothered to reply. I also read somewhere that the tejero’s Inn has lots of roaches 🙁 I hope its not true. coz if that’s the case, i’ll just go camp out at the beach. I really hope that everyone who planned to go there this summer will blog their experience at jomalig… ang konti kasi and puro pa 2014.. walang pinaKaRecent.

      • we will go back to jumalig this may 23,24,25,26 pure camping experience and more fun and adventure. who wants to join? see you at salibungot beach

      • Hello. i have airplanes available for charter to Jomalig Island from Plaridel Airport in Plaridel, Bulacan. The plane that can seat 5 passengers is P30,000 (6t per person). While the plane that can seat 3 passengers is P20,000. usually we leave plaridel at 730am and arrive jomalig 820am. we wait for you until 3pm for the flight back to plaridel. If you want to stay overnight, its an additional 3,000 . i can be reached at 09178542626. I am an airline pilot so if i don’t reply immediately, it means i’m flying.

  19. Okay ba pumunta sa jomalig in October? I’m planning to celebrate my birthday week from 10/12/2015 to 10/16/2015 sana. Sana may good samaritan na magtext sakin ng info 09065642265. Thanks. Mabuhay po kayong lahat! 😛

  20. My friends and I are planning to visit Jomalig Island on the 6th of November. We need to be back in Manila on the 7th at lunch time. Can you please tell me the total travel time estimation from manila to Atimonan as you have mentioned that Atimonan is the best route. And also please include the boat travel time so that we can plan it. If we will be living Q.C at 01 am on Nov. 6. do you guys think we can be at Jomalig at sunrise? how many hours does it takes? thanks…

  21. Pingback: Travel Guide: Jomalig Island, Quezon | Travel Up

  22. hello po… anong oras po ang alis ng boat to jomalig… meron post po kasi nakalagay 7am meron naman 11am… TIA

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