A Paradise called Carles
Be where the birds fly higher and where the sun shines brighter… grab your sandals and head to Carles.
Carles is located at the northernmost part of the province of Iloilo in the Philippines. It is literally unexplored territory even for the locals. It is blessed with incredible natural beauty – white sand beaches, amazing rock formations, and diverse marine life. Each island has a different character from another. It never ceases to amaze ones senses. The travel time (3.5 hour bus ride & 1 hour boat ride) is well worth the trip.
If taking a bus, it is best to stay for the night as the last bus trip for Iloilo City is at 3pm. Take a Leganes-bound jeepney and get off at Tagbak Terminal in Jaro. Ceres Liner has regular trips to Carles starting from 330am and every one and a half/two hours thereafter. Be sure to check the schedule ahead of time. If bringing your own vehicle, a one day island-hopping tour is possible. Do not pass up Tangke Lagoon, Antonia Island, and Bantigue Island.
Swim in the clear and inviting shallow waters of Tangke Lagoon in Isla de Gigantes Sur amidst the imposing limestone cliffs. Although you will not see one because they would immediately hide at the first sign of incoming visitors. Monkeys inhabit the small crevices of the cliff.
Be in awe with the rock formations at Antonia Island. The island is idyllic and pristine. There are just two small residential houses in the island. There are no resorts. It is the perfect place to laze around.
Run the whole stretch of Bantigue Island‘s shifting sandbar. There are also no resorts here. So, unless you know someone who lives in the small fishing village situated in the island, your only option is to stay in one of the resorts in the mainland. During high tide, shallow water partly covering the sand bar is a magnificent sight to behold and a wonderful place to wade in.
The Municipality of Carles is unique in that most of its barangays are located in the islands. Hence, you will never run out of islands to explore. All resorts are situated in the mainland. The best time to visit is during the summer months when the waves are not too big. A trip is not complete without pasalubongs (gifts) to bring home. Fresh bay-ad (a mollusk), a close cousin of kapis or lampirong, can be bought at Php 20/plastic bag. To view more pictures of Carles, click here.
Mr. Jungie Pamplona
Planning, Mayor’s Office
(please leave a message here so that I can refer you to him)
Bus fare: non-aircon Php 178 each way/head; aircon Php 185 each way/head
Boat Rental: approx. Php 2000 (capacity: 8 persons)