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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Holiday Escapade to Marikit-na Beach and Resort in Maniwaya Island | Discovering the Cheapest Villa in Marinduque





For the past few years, I’d been making my own tradition of avoiding the rush and the panicking public during the December holidays. On these days, I simply wish not to be stressed out of what to fill into my refrigerator and what to cook for the Noche Buena. Yes that’s true, I am the Grinch of the Christmas day and instead of being in commune with the holiday celebration, I opted to be in total isolation.

For this year, I put on my backpack and traveled with my two other friends and got lost in the Island Province of Marinduque.

Marinduque is located literally in the heart of the Philippines.  This island province can be reached via public transportation through RORO ship from the port of Dalahican in Lucena City. This silent province is one of the under rated tourist destinations in the Philippines with unspoiled island beaches, waterfalls and caves.


There is no sense of urgency in this side of the country.You have all the time you need in the countryside

It is just sad that Marinduque is only being praised for its infamous Moriones Festival during holy week and seldom perceived as tropical paradise getaway.

Today, we feature Marinduque as one of the rising tourist destinations that would surely satisfy your tropical escapade. Not so known among the travelers, Marinduque shelters the tropical island of Maniwaya with shores filled with almost perfect white to golden sand beaches.

Coming back to Maniwaya Island signifies only my awe and satisfaction to return to the same place twice in the same year. But this time, we have come to explore the less traveled road of the northern side of the island to where we discovered the posh Marikit-na Villa that caters a luxury accommodation for guests who dream of a full relaxing stay in the island.

But mind you, visiting this island requires a lot of patience as almost all sectors in this province have no sense of urgency and time is considered as a not so rare commodity. You will have a lot of time waiting…waiting and more of waiting. If you are wondering why I sounded a bit virulent, then let me take you on the details of our voyage.

My team has agreed to meet at the Kamuning Bus Station and took the JAC Liner Bus bound for Lucena that left at 4 in the morning.  We arrived in Lucena Grand Terminal by 7:30 am and took the jeepney bound for the city proper at the tricycle terminal bound for Dalahican port.

We rushed to the port only to find out that the RORO Ship (Star Horse) won’t be leaving until 10am. Wow, we were stuck for hours inside the dripping terminal of Dalahican. We reached the port of Balanacan in Marinduque by 12 noon and got already dismayed learning that we have already missed the boat leaving for Maniwaya Island from Buyabod port. So we have to think of plan B.


Common nipa hut litters the island of Marinduque

Since it was a holiday, most of the hotels and inns in Sta. Cruz were closed, so, I have decided to call a friend whose mother lives in Brgy. Balogo. With no other choice, we settled and requested politely to have an overnight stay inside the cozy nipa hut of Nanay Meding, who welcomed us whole-heartedly with food and shelter provided to spend the night with. Thanks ‘Nay! What a day! Sleeping over the bamboo made floor reminded me of the simple life that I have been dreaming of since birth.  Life shouldn’t be so complicated after all.

The next day, we rushed back to Buyabod Port to catch the 10am boat leaving for Maniyawa Island. But it was an excruciating experience to waste another couple of hours when we have learned that the only boat servicing the public have to postpone until 12noon, waiting for the cargo and supplies needed in the remote island. Now I really do believe in forever as the waiting seems like FOREVER!

Marikit-na Beach and Resort

Behold, Marikit-na Beach and Resort, the Cheapest Villa in the Philippines

Shivering and totally drenched due to December rain, we reached Maniwaya by 2 in the afternoon and just got lucky to spot  a Habal-habal (motorcycle) waiting for passengers. For 20 pesos each, we were transported to the other side of the island where our posh accommodation awaits.
One of the six rooms in Marikit-na Beach and Resort in Maniwaya Island, Marinduque
Sitting at the northern side of Maniwaya, Marikit-na is a wooden villa suited to accommodate a group of at least 30-35 guests at a time with their six large rooms, a spacious attic that can accommodate at least 20 guests and a ginormous home theater that would really shock everyone to find it in the secluded rural place like Maniwaya. And hey, we have the whole villa just for the 3 of us without any extra charge.



A total relaxing feeling is what you will get in this side of the island of Maniwaya

Electricity in the island is a scarce resource and being supplied from 3-10pm. With this problem, the owner decided to put up their own solar panels to make the supply of the electricity available 24/7 for the convenience of their guests. Unlike with the other highly commercialized resorts in Maniwaya, Marikit-na Beach and Resort has their own water purifying station that could replenish you with a clean and safe drinking water.

Never forget to relax and unwind a little, after all you deserve a break!





What I really liked about this place was the warm and pleasing personalized interior. According to Ron (property manager), the owner have decided to put on his personal touch on the materials used during the construction, choice of furniture, design on the lightings and even the collection of books and paintings displayed on wooden walls. Air conditioner is no longer necessary, as the sea breeze is enough to give you a chill inside the spacious house.


Sumptuous food prepared by the staff of Marikit-na

The bar and restaurant located just beneath the main house did not disappoint us with their own food creations, complete with dessert in the end. For P200 for each meal, I must say it was a satisfying gastronomic experience with no hassle of making a mess preparing your own food in an island barangay with no public market.

Things to Do in Maniwaya Island

For many, the island trip won’t be complete without getting around the small fish-shaped island. Good thing the service boat of the villa was in good condition that took us for a trip to the nearby sandbar that reappears only during low tide.


Taking a dip into the crystal clear water of Palad Sandbar

The morning sun was just perfect for us to bask under the golden rays and wade into the crystal blue water. The 50-meter long sandbar was actually a deposit of coral debris that has accumulated through time and has created this small atoll.


But the fun just cannot be confined in this small atoll as we sailed forward to a not so famous landmark hidden in plain sight-the ruins of the biggest structure in Maniwaya, a ginormous mansion that was once owned and inhabited by a Japanese treasure hunter whom according to local folktale built the mansion on the cliff as a front for a secret excavation and recovery of Japanese treasures that was hidden during the Japanese occupation in the Philippines.

Visiting the ruins of the grand mansion, the biggest infrastructure in Maniwaya



As we enter the ruins, we were mesmerized with the quality of the strong frame and foundation of the mansion and it left us with so many questions why the owner would just abandoned a multi-million peso fully furnished property in the heart of the Philippines. Our guess, the legend must be true that after the treasure was recovered, the treasure hunter flee the Philippines with all the riches he recovered.



Stroll into the golden beach of Palo Maria

Moving forward, we took a quick trip to the other side of the island, to the popular Palo Maria and Residences. Compared to where Marikit-na stands, this side of the island is crowded with resorts and infrastructures popping out like mushrooms due to its strategic location, with almost placid water that is conducive for some safe water sports and recreation especially for children.


With no code or island theme implemented, land owners just simply put up anything that they think would attract tourists, but the sad fact is, these infrastructures have turned into eye sore and a complete turn off to the eyes of those visiting the island. I just hope that the unappealing situation in this side of Maniwaya won’t turn into another story of the TRAGEDY OF THE COMMONS.

How to Get to Maniwaya Island?

Common transportation in Marinduque
From Manila, there are buses (JAM and Jac Liner) bound directly to Lucena Quezon, the fare is roughly P200.00. If the bus did not take you to Dalahican Port, you can take a tricycle (Php30.00/pax) to the pier. At the port of Dalahican, there are two major shipping lines that can take you to Balanacan, Marinduque, one is Montenegro and the other one is Starhorse and the fare is just Php 260.00 plus a terminal fee of Php 30.00.

Ferry schedule bound for Balanacan starts at 2am, 4am, 10am and with the last trip at 4:00pm (regular days). In our case, it was a Christmas day with a single trip to the island that left at 10am.


At Balanacan Port, jeepneys and vans are on queue waiting for passengers bound for Sta. Cruz, Boac etc., fare is Php 80.00.

Buyabod Port to Maniwaya Island and vice versa

At the town proper of Sta. Cruz, there are tricycles bound for Buyabod fronting the DepEd building, fare is Php 15.00 each. At Buyabod Port, the motorized boat leaves for Maniwaya Island at 10:00am, fare is Php 70.00. The boat from Maniwaya Island returns to Buyabod Port at 7:00am the next day.

Maniwaya Island to General Luna, Quezon and vice versa

There is also a boat that leaves directly to General Luna, Quezon from Maniwaya Island and it leaves exactly at 6:30 in the morning. Then the boat from General Luna returns to Maniwaya Island by 10am.

Room Rates in Marikit-na Beach and Resort

The villa can be rented exclusive for a group. Each spacious room is designed for 2 occupants for P1800.00/24 hours stay. There will be an extra charge of P600 for each additional guest. The villa can accommodate at most 35 guests. Boat transfer and island hopping activities can also be requested from the resort manager.

Disclaimer: Prices are based on lean/regular days and room rates may change without prior notice especially during peak season (summer) and on holidays.

For update and inquiries please contact the property manager on the number posted below.


Ron Montes
Property Manager
Marikit-na Beach and Resort,
Maniwaya Island, Sta. Cruz
Marinduque, Philippines

Contact number:
+63.927.878.9782

+63.921.978.5565



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24 comments :

  1. So much thanks for this sir dennis. We're looking forward to.see.you soon here in our place. God Bless..

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  2. I really hate waiting and especially if there's nothing else to do to pass time. What should keep me inspired though is that sometimes, there are really things that make the wait worthwhile--like seeing the beautiful views in the travel destination and having a great time with friends. You just gave me an idea to do the same.

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  3. This is a great discovery in Marinduque. The waters are crystal clear and the beach look so refreshing.

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  4. Jonas Ignatius LabagalaJanuary 30, 2015 at 12:27 AM

    Wow! You actually survived the waiting game which I really don't like especially if it's planned right ahead and everything will just be spoiled because of the waiting game you have to play.. But the misadventures are the ones that you can remember like for a long time.. :D


    And yes, Marinduque is one gem waiting to be discovered by many. Great pictures! :D

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  5. OMG, this is a very nice place! I love the sand and the beach, it looks so clean. I've never been to Marinduque before.

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  6. This is a nice way to spend the holidays. Plus it seems that you have the place mostly to yourselves. It looks serene and beautiful. People should know about this place.

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  7. It looks like a very peaceful place to visit. What captured my attention was the scenery. And the food looks great too.

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  8. another beach a couple of hours around the metro manila this is <3 <3

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  9. What a nice calm place to relax and unwind. For sure a lot of tourists and even Filipinos haven't heard about this place (like me). Great place to visit this summer!

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  10. Wow! nice photographs...I've never been to Marinduque. I hope that in the near future some friends would be interested to go with me there.

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  11. This is a good post as I've never been to Marinduque. I don't much about the place only that it's somewhere in central Philippines. Thanks for the info.

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  12. Thanks for sharing this with us Sir Dennis. We need to promote this kind of a place, especially our beaches here in the Philippines.

    Boracay is too crowded now, this place will be our alternative.

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  13. Thanks sir Dennis.. We.already have one inquiry cause of ur blog regards to our place

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  14. more will come very very soon :) i am receiving a lot of private messages inquiring about your villa :)

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  15. Cool. That's a great news and start. They can contact din me naman if they want or refer sila sa.blog mo.regards pricing. Thanks again

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  16. Kristine Ann MartinezFebruary 1, 2015 at 12:38 AM

    Dennis, pede m b kmi i-tour dyan? Sama ko family ko

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  17. sure basta available ako....magpa field trip ka na rin jan Kristine...para bigger group and with a purpose.. ako kunin niong tour guide :D

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  18. Sa first photo pa lang, mabibighani ka na sa place. ha,ha,ha.. Ganda ng
    place, and I like most strolling along the shore with bikini-clad girls added to the beauty of Nature.

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  19. Spending Christmas someplace else is actually on my bucket list. I'd like to NOT experience the Christmas rush for a change too. Hopefully this year.

    Great pictures, btw. Thanks for sharing the details of your trip.

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  20. Loved seeing that rainbow sa Palad sandbar. great shot of the girl in bikini,

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  21. sir how much po yung cheapest room nyo na good for two .. overnight po???

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  22. hi @yhan-yhan you can contact @Ronald Montes on the number indicated at the end of the article ... thanks for dropping by.

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  23. Sir mga magkano po kaya ung budget kpag 3 days kami mag stay dyan?

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  24. Hi @JuJunjean Bulatao.. you can contact

    Ron Montes
    Property Manager
    Marikit-na Beach and Resort,
    Maniwaya Island, Sta. Cruz
    Marinduque, Philippines

    Contact number:
    +63.927.878.9782
    +63.921.978.5565

    Thank you.

    ReplyDelete