(Last Updated On: October 25, 2017)

The Philippines is an archipelago dotted by more than 7500 islands and islets and surrounded by one of the world’s most diversed ocean waters. Hence, discovering gorgeously beautiful and pristine islands in the country should not come as a surprise but the case is utterly otherwise. Everyday we come across precious delights that don’t ever fail to satisfy the eye and trigger our inner wanderlust. Everyday a handful of stunning islands and must see destinations in the country are discovered, adding to our already overflowing bucketlist. There’s always a secret to unravel in every hidden corners and the possibility of stumbing into something wonderful is limitless. Maniwaya Island happens to be one of those undiscovered jewels concealed behind the shadows in the not so distant province of Marinduque.

Marinduque is widely known for the traditional Moriones Festival celebrated annually during the Holy Week but little do people know that there’s more to this province than men dressed in ancient Roman costumes and morion masks until an island promising white sandy shores, turquiose seawater, stunning sandbar and amazing rock formation surfaced the internet. It didn’t take long for people to take notice of the long, unspoken jewel that was Maniwaya Island and the myriads of splendid things it offers.

Maniwaya Island is part of the town of Sta Cruz in Marinduque and is less than an hour of boat ride away from the main island. It is surprisingly undeveloped with only a handful of resorts lined along its shores of rough coral stones and white sugary sands. Its water is teeming with life although negative effects of cyanide and dynamite fishing in the past are still very much evident in one too many dead corals scattered in its ocean floor. Its rustic vibe and tranquil state are its most redeeming qualities. Plus, it is totally off the path and uncrowded so you are guaranteed to have that patch of sand to frolic under the sun with for that much needed tan.


Commute Via Dalahican Port

  • Ride a JAC Liner bus in Buendia or Kamias stations bound for Marinduque (Check here for schedules). Alight the bus in Sta Cruz. From Sta. Cruz proper, ride a jeepney to Buyabod Port. Charter an outrigger boat to take you to Maniwaya Island or your preferred resort.
  • Ride a JAC or JAM Liner bus to Lucena/Dalahican Port. Board a ferry to Balancan Port, Marinduque. From Balancan Port, ride a jeepney to Sta. Cruz and alight in the town center then ride a tricycle to Buyabod Port. Charter an outrigger boat to take you to Maniwaya Island or your chosen resort.

Commute Via Gen. Luna Port 

  • Ride a JAC or JAM Liner bus to Lucena Grand Terminal. From there, ride a van to General Luna Port. Once you get to the port, charter an outrigger boat to take you to Maniwaya Island or your chosen resort. There is one passenger boat to Maniwaya which leaves everyday at 10AM and fare is P150.

Rented Van Or Private Car Via Gen. Luna/Calauag Fist Port

  • Drive to SLEX taking Calamba exit. Continue to CALABARZON Express Way. Drive until General Luna via Pan-Phil Hwy passing by Lucena, Pagbilao and Candelaria. Once you get to the port, arrange for a parking service with the locals (if you would leave your car) then charter an outrigger boat to take you the Maniwaya Island or your chosen resort.


Along the white sandy shores of Maniwaya Island are a range of resorts suitable for every budget and preference. I’ve listed some of them below.

  • Wawie’s Beach – A homey resort with the usual tropical vibe. Cottages are made of native materials such as bamboo and nipa and has a spacious camping area under the coconut shaded grounds. [Contact: Kuya Warlito – +63 921 369 5359]
  • Playa Amara – A family owned resort with modern amenities and glamorous cottages resembling those of Bali Indonesia. [Contact: Kuya Abner – +63 928 507 0362]
  • Marikit-Na Beach House – A beachfront resort with the right touch of cozy and luxury. [Contact no: +63 927 878 9782]
  • Residencia De Palo Maria – One of the many resorts fronting the beach with a swimming pool and a lush garden that’s perfect for kicking off stress. [Contact: 09192375633, 09228670312 & 09179540495]


  • Check out Palad Sand Bar and Ungab Rock – Not only is Maniwaya Island a great place to get a respite out of the bustle but it also offers some spectacular sites such as the long stretch of sugary white sands in Palad Sand Bar and amazing rock formation and beach in Ungab Rock.
  • Snorkel – Illegal methods of fishing was rampant in this side of the country in the past but it’s still nice to see the surviving underwater ecology in the waters of Marinduque.
  • Try water activities – If you are the type who easily gets bored with just frolicking at the beach then don’t fret. Water activities such as banana boating, kayaking, jet skiing and paddle boarding are offered in some resorts within the island.
  • Do unlimited photo ops – The place is absolutely stunning! You can get as much dose of those instagram worthy photos as you like.
  • Test the waters – You’re at the beach babe! What else to do then? You gotta swim!
  • Just frolic under the sun – Nothing beats relaxing by the beach, just watching the tides and the blue skies and simply letting time pass by.
  • Sunset Watching – Maniwaya Island has one of the most spectacular sunsets in the country so spending quiet moments by the beach while watching the harmonious color of the breezy afternoon collide as the sun bids the day goodbye is always a perfect way to cap off one eventful day.


  • If you are to take the General Luna route and is going on a rented van or a private car, travel time may take 4-5 hours max. No need to be at the port too early since travel hours to Maniwaya Island will not start until 8-9 AM when the water level has risen up after the lowtide.
  • There is a public market beside the port in General Luna where you can buy food, other goods and necessities.
  • The best time to go to the island is during the low season from July to November. Beach is guaranteed all yours and prices are cheaper. Although you have to anticipate rough seas and bumpy boat rides.
  • Palad Sandbar appears during the lowtide hours from 6AM-8AM and 3PM-6PM.
  • Ungab Rock may not be accessible during rough seas.
  • Camping is possible. Wawie’s Beach has camping grounds for which they charge a fee of P200 per tent.


SUMMARY OF EXPENSES (Rented Van Via Gen. Luna 
Rountrip Manila-Gen. Luna (Van) @ P9000/10P900
Food (Marketing) P2500/10P250
Accommodation (Wawie's Beach) @ P1200/room/3paxP400
Roundtrip Boat Transfer @ P5000/10paxP500
Banana BoatingP200
Day 1

0300 Meet Up Buendia Bus Station
0330 ETD General Luna
0730 ETA General Luna Port
0800 Breakfast. Marketing
0900 ETD Maniwaya Island
1030 ETA Maniwaya Island/Chosen resort. Settle Down.
1200 Lunch
1300 Free time. Rest.
1500 Palad Sandbar
1600 Ungab Rock
1700 Back to resort. Wash Up. Sunset Watching
1800 Dinner
1900 Socials
2200 Lights Out
Day 2

0600 Wake Up. Freshen Up.
0700 Breakfast
0800 Water Activities
0900 Swim. Enjoy the beach. Photo Ops.
1200 Lunch
1300 Pack Up.
1400 ETD General Luna/Catanauan
1500 ETA General Luna
2000 ETA Manila

-Tent (If you plan to camp)
-Snorkel gear
-Extra clothes
Van Rental (Sir Paul) - 0948 062 8899
Kuya Eldie - 0949 573 3861


See the irresistible charm of Maniwaya Island and learn the epic story of our happy weekend escape through our numerous photos.

There you have it folks. Our escapade to Maniwaya Island was probably one of the most memorable this year. From the beauty of the island to the sheer laughter we had shared, the time I’ve spent with our new found friends was all worth it.

Ayt. Until next time. Feel free to leave your comments or share your Maniwaya Island experience in the comments box below. Ciao! 🙂

Blog Headline: MANIWAYA ISLAND: Budget Travel Guide With Itinerary And Sample Expenses Blog Description: Experience the irresistible beauty of Maniwaya Island with this comprehensive DIY Budget Travel Guide. Published Date: Oct 7, 2016 Modified Date: Oct 14, 2017 Image URL: http://www.awanderfulsole.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/DSC_0071.jpg Image Width: 900 Image Height: 800 Publisher Name: A Wanderful Sole Logo URL: http://www.awanderfulsole.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/cropped-logo_2063429_web-1-1.png Logo Width: 200 Logo Height: 200

Hi There!

Watashi no namae wa Kezu desu!

“A wanna be. Wanna do everything kind of badass”


Hmm. I’m wondering what I should tell you since I really don’t wanna oversell myself. Let’s see.. Just like any other girl, I’m just ordinary. I love to travel, take photos, share stories and write. I’m an anime otaku and my favorite country is Japan although I haven’t been there yet. I have a 9 by 5 job but I hope to travel full time someday. And I’m also a blabbermouth since birth. Me blogging and writing stuff online is just some sort of therapy so I don’t get myself in trouble. You know, me and my big mouth. Lol


  1. The first time we traveled to Maniwaya, we were ‘joiners’. Now we’re planning to go back through DIY and this post is very helpful! Thank you. So excited to go back!

  2. Hi, may photos po kayo ng rooms nila? yung ac room, wala kasi ako mahanap ng photos nung room nila na may ac. Thanks.

    • Hi Joan. Wala po akong photos ng rooms e. Sorry. Pero yung may AC was under construction when we went there. Baka tapos na po yun by now.

  3. arnold tan valiente Reply

    for your Van Rental and Services please do contact us..We cater Manila and nearby provinces to General Luna Port 09228032402

  4. Hello 🙂 Malayo ba yung Palad Sandbar and Ungab Rock? Kung hindi ba kami magpunta dun, may magagawa pa rin kami sa Maniuaya? We’re planning to stay in Residencia de Palo Maria. Hehe. Thanks for your response!

    • Hi Anj. Yes mejo malayo ang Palad Sandbar and Ungab rock. In rough seas baka hinde din accessible. You can opt to see thr snorkel spots in the area as well as do some water activities.

      • HI M’ Keza ask ko lang po kung yong transportation boat ba from gen luna port to maniwaya island is for public. just in case isa gang lima lng ang magbalak pumunta sa island. and how much po ang pamasahe sa boat per head?

  5. Hi Ms. Keza, do you have contact number ng van that can accomodate transfers from/to the island with Island hopping na? Thank you.

  6. Hi! I just want to ask how much is the fare of the van from Lucena Grand to the terminal? However, I read some blogs saying that the port is just a walking distance from the terminal. Some says that one needs a jeep or a bus to go there. Do you have any idea what’s the best way to get there?

    • Gen Luna is an hour or two away from Lucena. Fare might range from 120-150 per person. I think the port they are referring to near Lucena Grand Terminal is Dalahican and not the one iN gen. Luna

      • I see. Upon arriving at the General Luna town proper, does one need to take a trike going to the General Luna port? Or is it already walkable?

        • You may ask the driver to drop you off the port but if it is not possible then Yes you may need to hire a trike to take you to the port. 🙂

  7. Jamie Arellano Reply


    Thank you for the great and informative write up. Just want to clarify if how much is the boat from General Luna port to Maniwaya? May commercial boats po ba? We are just 2 pax. Thanks! 🙂

    And just in case magdadala po ng sasakyan, may safe parking po ba? 🙂

  8. hi, is there any cottages po bang available in any resorts that you mentioned? for daytour lang sana kmi thank you

  9. Hi! How much is the boat ride from Maniwaya island to Palad sandbar and Ungab?

      • Hi Keza, planning to go here..ask ko lang kung nirentahan niyo ung boat? ksma ung island hopping? mga 20pax kami.. may nkausap ako sa wawie’s.. 4k. hatid sundo + island hopping (palad+ungab rock formation) ? Thank you! 🙂

        • Hi Cassandra. Yes kasama na island hopping sa boat rental na kinuha namen sa Wawie’s. Mura na yung 4k.

  10. nung hinatid po kayo sa gen. luna port. nung van magstay lang po siya dun until bumalik kayo sa port on the second day? Thank You.

    • Hi Mikay. Yes po nagstay po muna sya dun until bumalik kame. Depende nman yun sa usapan nyo. Para di kayo matakbuhan, wag nyo po muna ibigay full payment. Saka na pagnakabalik na kayo sa Manila

  11. Thank you for this information! Sorry, which currency did you use in your budget list?

  12. Jeannie Paglomutan Reply

    I guess my daughter would love it there. I’ll be sharing to her this article/travel blog

  13. hi, ask ko lang yung van and boat accommodation need magpareserved first? or pwedeng pagdating sa area dun nalang makipag-negotiate? thanks for the response.

    • For the van, you have to get yourself one before your travel. For the boat, you have the option to book it directly with your chosen resort or you can negotiate once you get to the port. 😊

  14. Babrbie dazo Reply

    Hi po gud am,ask ko lng po may iba p bo pa kaung contact number ng mga resorts?

    • Hi Ica. Depends on the size of the boat and capacity. Smaller boats may be priced at 3500 which can fit 5 people. Bigger boats may be priced up to 6000 for 10-15people. Try to contact kuya Wawie so he can arrange your boat transf3r. 😊

  15. Rye Manago Reply

    Hi guys,
    Your photos are amazing! Your tips and write ups are very informative. I would love to see more travels from your group.

    P.S. Can you also go to less visited snorkeling/dive sites near manila?

    • Hi Rye! Thanks. Yes! Dive sites are coming. It’s on the list. Just settling some stuff and we’re soon off to more diving on the blog. 😄

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