With a geography of over 7000 islands, The Philippines is not the easiest country to travel around for a month or two and backpacking in Romblon Island is not yet one of the most common things to do in the Philippines.
We all know about the highlights in the country that by now are well exploited and those are the places I try to avoid.
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My solo backpacking trip around the Philippines surely had many highlights, but the one place I remember more fondly is Romblon Island!
I didn’t know anything about this island, and a couple of Filipino friends that recommended me many places to visit around the country failed to mention this island.
Why did I go to Romblon island then?
After coming back north from Donsol where I did some Swimming with Whale Sharks I made my way towards Batangas and then Puerto Galera.
From there I was looking to go towards Boracay just to see what’s all the fuss about this place.
However, talking with the owners at my guesthouse in Puerto Galera I decided to search for alternative destinations as the picture they presented was not the sort of stuff I like so I started looking for all possible combinations for ferries and even flights to pretty much anywhere. 12go.Asia is a pretty good place to check prices and book online but also feel free to just walk-in to the ports without booking anything in advance.
Among the many places I checked, Romblon Island caught my attention instantly and I didn’t care that I had to go back to Batangas to then take a night ferry to get there.
How to get there?
Romblon is not a super popular destination, not many people goes there so the amount of ferries is not huge but you can still get there from Batangas, Roxas City or the island of Tablas.
I took a night ferry from Batangas with Montenegro Lines which is normally the cheapest option available.
If like me, you get an economy ticket, ask for the bed to be towards the outer side of the deck so it’s cooler. At night it can be very hot if you’re not on a breezy area.
A cool thing from Montenegro is that they’re more relaxed than other companies so you can walk around the outer deck and enjoy the sunset from there!
Arriving to Romblon
Although it’s a small island, it’s not a walkable one, so you need to either rent a motorbike, get a tricycle or if very early in the morning get one of the few Jeepneys that go around the island (I understand they stop after around 10am!)
I arrived early in the morning and I was planning to stay at Reggae Vibes de Isla Romblon hostel which is far away from the port.
I took a Jeepney about 200m outside the port, don’t worry about negotiating a price as they have printed fares depending on where you go.
Where to stay?
There are quite a few places to stay all over the island and I think it’s much better to go out of the main village area because as soon as you go out you find incredible beaches and extremely peaceful places.
Reggae Vibes de Isla Romblon was a pretty cool place to stay. They include a good breakfast and if you go without a booking it will be cheaper than on the advertised prices online.
They also offer free of charge snorkelling equipment so you can also snorkel right in front of the hostel where there’s lots of coral and you can even spot some turtles!
Check here for more hostels in Romblon island
What to do in Romblon?
Apart from chilling like nowhere else, there are plenty of things to do in Romblon!
Go island hopping while snorkelling all day long!
My favourite thing was for sure the island hopping tour, ask at your hostel and they will put you in contact with a local tour guide.
Make sure to negotiate the price.
We were 5 and paid 500 Pesos each for a full day going to lots of places. Some food included. It was a really long day and we ended up extremely tired but super happy! I normally avoid tours but this one was worth it!
The cliff jumping at Cobrador Island was really cool on an incredibly scenic spot!
Stay overnight at Cobrador Island
If you have more time and decide not to do the island hopping tour, you can stay at the beautiful island of Cobrador.
Its white sand beaches and tranquil atmosphere are simply breathtaking!
Go to Bonbon Beach!
Definitely the star of the show at Romblon. This sandbar can be crossed on foot and it’s a stunning place to enjoy the sunset.
Next to Bonbon there’s also Tianbam Beach which offers some more white sand beach for another lazy day!
Go to the waterfalls (weather permitting)
There are a couple of waterfalls in Romblon that look really cool on the pictures, but I went during dry season and the waterfalls were simply little streams of disappointment.
Still worth the little trek around the jungle though.
Buy some marble!
Romblon is the marble capital of the Philippines and as soon as you walk a little bit around the main village you will find lots of places to buy almost anything, from small keyrings and figurines to dining tables!
I spent 5 days in total in Romblon and could have easily stayed longer, I highly recommend visiting this hidden gem of a place as you will not experience any crowds whilst having incredibly perfect beaches nearby.
Feel free to drop a comment or ask me anything if you’re planning some adventures backpacking in Romblon Island!
Check out the rest of my adventures in the Philippines for more ideas on your next trip!