Marinduque is the hometown of my ancestors from my father side, the clan of Mangcucangs. Growing up without really knowing your heritage and where you came from is sort of puzzling. It was like a myth to me knowing that my clan came from Mogpog, Marinduque but we’ve never set our foot there. Marinduque is also the hometown of the famous Morions.

Although our team, TRIAGE, has had a project in Santa Cruz, Marinduque, it still felt like a homecoming. When they knew that my clan came from Marinduque, they treated me like an adoptive local of Santa Cruz. They knew my surname! That was amazing!

 

Marinduque is dubbed as the heart of the Philippines due to its geographical location and its shape similar to a heart. Marinduquenos have also a big heart for the tourists, they are very warm and hospitable and will treat you like a family. Furthermore, they are also one of the safest provinces in the Philippines due to very low crime rate. I believe that they really deserve the title.

CUBAO TO RORO

From Cubao, you may ride Jac Liner going to Dalahican Port, Lucena, Quezon Province for around ₱238. You may take a RORO (Roll-on, Roll-off) bus in Jac Liner terminal but that’s ₱880 and it goes around Marinduque starting off with Mogpog-Boac-Buenavista-Torrijos then finally in Santa Cruz.

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Inside the Biggest Vessel of Starhorse

If you’re not taking the direct RORO, after alighting at Dalahican Port you need to go directly to cashier and pay for the terminal fee that’s worth ₱30 and the fare for the sea vessel is ₱280 (sometimes lesser depending on the season). The land travel from Cubao to Dalahican Port is around 4.5 hours and the sea travel is around 3 hours from Dalahican Port to Balanacan Port.

If you travel past 12 in the morning from Lucena, there is a greater chance that you would be able to see dolphins swimming opposite the vessel. It was too crowded during our travel that I was not able take photos of the dolphins we saw.

BALANACAN PORT, MOGPOG, MARINDUQUE

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Statue of the Immaculate Conception

Upon arrival at the Balanacan Port of Mogpog, Marinduque, you’ll be greeted by the large statue of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception who is also the patron saint of the capital of Marinduque, the municipality of Boac.

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Moriones Monument

Upon exiting the port, you’ll also see the statues of Morions, on the round-about, the famous scene in Senakulo, the beheading a Morion who became a Christ-believer after witnessing a miracle.

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Eat Here!

There are several eateries beside Balanacan Port and you can stop-over and have your meal first before going to your destination. But I suggest that you go and eat at Cely’s Store because they are more accommodating and friendlier to tourists compared to their competitors. It’s the store on your left when you exit the gate of the port. The jeepneys going to the municipality Sta. Cruz are just parked near the round about and the fare is 100 and would take about an hour to reach the downtown area (bayan) of Sta. Cruz.

 DOWNTOWN OF SANTA CRUZ, MARINDUQUE

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Morion Land-marker of Santa Cruz

The downtown of Santa Cruz is landmarked by a huge Morion and a the name of the municipality of Santa Cruz. Beside it is the park/multipurpose area/basketball court and just in front of the municipal hall. Do everything you need to do in downtown like buying your toiletries, withdraw cash from the bank, buy a memory card, buy water or food, or whatever you missed to bring. The public market for your food is also just walking-distance, just ask the locals for direction or ride a tricycle going there. You may already buy your pasalubong or souvenir there because you might not return there anymore and there are no other place you can buy them.

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Holy Cross Parish of Santa Cruz, Marinduque is the oldest church in the municipality and it is where the procession starts and ends during Good Friday and Moriones Festival.

POCTOY WHITE BEACH, TORRIJOS

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Poctoy White Beach is a combination of clear blue water and coarse to fine, beige to off-white sand that is satisfactory in beauty while you may also enjoy the nice and magnificent view of Mt. Malindig while it is being overcast by few clouds making it very photogenic.

Aside from swimming, you may also try skim-boarding in the beach or other simple activities that they offer.

The jeepney fare going to and from Torrijos is ₱100 per way and the entrance to Poctoy White Beach is ₱50 and you may or you may not rent a pavilion that costs ₱300 per day. There a public shower area and dressing room that you can use for free.

KAWA-KAWA FALLS AND BUSAY FALLS IN SANTA CRUZ

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Kawa-Kawa Falls in Barangay Bangcuangan, Santa Cruz derived its name from a large cooking pan, which is the ‘kawa’, used by Filipinos everytime there is a fiesta or big event to be able to cook in large servings. The falls is like having several levels of kawa to receive the downpour of the water from the mountain. From downtown Santa Cruz, you may ride a tricycle for ₱100 per way wih maximum passengers of 5 or a minimum fare of ₱20 each. An entrance fee in Kawa-Kawa Falls costs ₱20 for adults and ₱10 for students and senior citizens.

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Busay Falls in Barangay Pag-asa, Santa Cruz is relatively nearer the downtown and considerably walking-distance so you don’t need to pay for a fare, just locate it in the Maps. It is quite smaller than Kawa-Kawa Falls but with less people. The entrance fee is about the same ₱10-20.

MANIWAYA ISLAND

Maniwaya Island is the main tourist attraction in the province of Marinduque and it is specifically located in the municipality of Santa Cruz. It proudly promotes the beautiful fine white sand beaches of the island that reflects the bright glow of the sun during day time and the be mesmerized by the crystal clear turquoise water of its seashore.

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How to get there:

  • (Prices are not guaranteed because we got everything for free because of our job) From downtown Santa Cruz, you may ride a tricycle going to Buyabod Port (Porta de Buyabod) for ₱100 with a maximum number of passengers of 5 for ₱20 each.
  • From Porta de Buyabod, you may ride the passenger boat going to Maniwaya Island for ₱100 each every 11am everyday or rent a boat for ₱1,500 good for 10 passengers for special trip for one way. The ride is about 20 to 30 minutes.
  • You may also ride a pump boat from Gen. Luna, Quezon Province for ₱150.

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The island has two sides and both are proud of their white beaches, the Wawie’s Beach and the side of Marikit Beach. They are a mixture of fine white sand to coarse depending on the area you are staying at.  You can pitch a tent for ₱200-300 per night or rent a room for ₱400-600 per night depending on which room you choose.

You may also visit to the nearby Palad Sandbar which has the same type of sand and usually appears every early in the morning. It is best if you stay there overnight to see it in the morning. The boat ride going there costs around ₱100-200 depending on how many of you will divide for the boat fare. It will take around 10 to 15 minutes to get there from Maniwaya.

You may contact Kuya Tawi at 0947-7723701 for boat rentals and tours. He’s also one of our trained bangkeros who’s capable of performing CPR and first aid during an emergency situation. So you’re in good hands aside from Metrobank.

UNGAB ROCK FORMATION, MONGPONG ISLAND

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The magnificent Ungab Rock Formation is found in Sitio Ungab in Mongpong Island of the Municipality of Santa Cruz. You can get there through a pump boat from Buyabod Port for about ₱200 each. If you’re coming from Maniwaya Island, it would cost you around ₱100-200 each depending on the number of people sharing for the boat ride. It is about an hour and a half from Buyabod Port or about 30 minutes from Maniwaya Island. The is not white sand beach, so don’t expect too much.

BAGUMBUNGAN CAVE

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Honestly, I wasnt able to try spelunking in the Bagumbungan Cave because we were left at the Buyabod port due to our work while some of our buddies were at the cave. Lovelie (one of our buddies at the cave) told us that it was fun. Huhuhu! I was sad that I wasn’t able to try the fun and exciting adventure of spelunking in Marinduque. The cave is located at Sitio Puti, Barangay San Isidro, Santa Cruz, Marinduque. It is a subterranean cave protected by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the local government unit (LGU). It’s around 2km and some parts of it is still unexplored.

From the town proper of Santa Cruz, you may ride a jeepney going back to Balanacan Port for ₱20 and in about 30 minutes. Just ask the driver to drop you off at San Isidro and guide you.

Fees according to Barangay Ordinance No. 5 S. 2012 (Resolution No. 133-B-S. 2012)

  • ₱30 Environmental Fee
  • ₱70 Entrance Fee
  • ₱110 Cave Guide Fee (SPCGA)
  • ₱20 Helmet and Gloves Rental Fee
  • ₱50 Headlamp Rental Fee (mahal ang battery, ‘wag magreklamo)
  • ₱20 Right of Way
  • ₱300 Total

CARMEN ECO-ADVENTURE PARK

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It is an adventure camp where you may opt to check-in in groups (rooms with 12 bunk beds each or maximum of 24 persons each room) or just have a swim in their pool or do some of their available activities. This is an optional activity and is about 15 minutes from town proper and accessible via tricycle.

  • ₱20 Environmental Fee
  • ₱75/person Kayak
  • Catch and weigh
    • ₱50 Fishing rod rental
    • ₱120/kg Bangus
    • ₱120/kg Tilapia
  • ₱80 Overnight Camping
  • Swimming Pool Rates
    • ₱50 Adult
    • ₱25 Child
  • Guesthouse
    • ₱800 per room
    • ₱150 per addition bed
  • ₱500/day Big Nipa Hut
  • Picnic Groove
    • ₱300 Big Cottage
    • ₱150 Small Cottage
  • ₱150 Swimming Pool Cottage

ACCOMMODATIONS IN SANTA CRUZ, MARINDUQUE

  • JRed Hotel
    • Brgy. Pag-asa
    • Tel. (042) 321-1260
    • Rate ₱800 to 1,000 (aircon rooms)
  • Rico’s Inn
    • Brgy. Pag-asa
    • Tel. (042) 321-1085
    • Rate ₱200 per person
  • Sikatuna Resort Hotel
    • Brgy. Tawiran
    • Tel. (042) 321-1465
    • Rate ₱600 to 750 (aircon rooms)
  • Oromismo 898 Hotel and Restaurant
    • Gomez St., Brgy. Maharlika
    • Tel. (042) 321-1283; 321-1790

Source: Hope This Helps You Blog

EXPENSES

ITEM AMOUNT (₱)
Bus Cubao to Dalahican Port             238.00
Terminal Fee Dalahican Port                30.00
RORO Dalahican to Balancan             280.00
Jeep to Santa Cruz Town Proper             100.00
Jeep to Brgy. San Isidro RT                40.00
Spelunking at Bagumbungan Cave             300.00
Food for 3 Days             500.00
Jeep to Poctoy White Beach RT             200.00
Entrance to Poctoy White Beach                50.00
Share for Pavilion ₱300                60.00
Tricycle to Kawa-Kawa Falls ₱100 good for 5                20.00
Entrance Fee to Kawa-Kawa Falls                20.00
Walk to Busay Falls                       –
Entrance Fee to Busay Falls                20.00
Overnight stay at Santa Cruz             200.00
Boat to Maniwaya & Mongpong Islands RT             400.00
Overnight Stay at Maniwaya ₱300 tent             150.00
Terminal Fee Balanacan Port                30.00
RORO Balanacan to Dalahican             280.00
Bus Dalahican Port to Cubao             238.00
 TOTAL          3,156.00
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