Friday, 25 April 2014

Mambulao eyed as next gateway to Calaguas

 A portion of the abandoned fish landing port next to the wet market in Mambulao. The pier is at the moment occupied by squatters.
 Calaguas-bound local tourists waiting for the next boat to leave from Paracale gateway.

 Tourists walking the beach to board the boat for Calaguas.

An officer of the boat operators' group in Paracale updates the list of available boats for Calaguas island resort. -- MWBuzzpics by AP HERNANDEZ

IF plans don’t miscarry, Mambulao town will become the fourth gateway to the emerging tourist resort Calaguas Islands in Vinzon, CamNorte.

Maria Leda Aler, chairwoman of Baranggay South Poblacion, is in talks with at least 10 boat operators in Paracale, which is the third gateway to the island resort.

The other take-off points are Mercedes and Vinzon.

Aler told  MWBuzz that six to 10 operators of shuttle boats wanted to transfer their operations to Mambulao.

They said Paracale is getting crowded as more tourists are coming for the boat ride from Paracale.

The boat operators told Aler they could divert a good portion
tourists to Mambulao provided proper facilities such as toilet facilities and enough publicity.

Kapitana Leday ... in talks with Paracale boat operators.

Aler said she would convert the abandoned fish landing port next to the wet market into a new take-off point to the island resort.

Although the boat ride to Calaguas in 30 minutes longer from Mambulao than that of Paracale, Vinzon and Mercedes, the drive to Mambulao town from the Talubatib junction along the provincial highway is shorter.

“We have more facilities in Mambulao such as hotels, shops and wet market that could cater to the tourists,” Aler said.

She said opening a new gateway in Mambulao would generate revenue for Baranggay South Poblacion, which is the business hub of the municipality.

In Paracale, tourists shuttling to Calaguas pay the barangay P20 as environmental protection donation, while boat operators pay their association a fee of P100 per trip.

The boat tariff per passenger is P750, which entitles the rider a boat shuttle from Paracale to Calaguas and back.

The boat shuttling operations are closely monitored by the Coast Guard based in Paracale.

Aler said being the fourth gateway to Calaguas would put Mambulao on the radar of local and international tourists.

They could also make a swing to Calalanay Islands, a fast-rising tourist resort about seven kilometers off the coast of Mambulao town, she said.

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