- History & Culture
- Top Attractions
- Planning a Trip
- Travel Resources
Bulalacao (San Pedro) is a 3rd class municipality. Regarding urbanization Bulalacao (San Pedro) is classified as partly urban. Bulalacao (San Pedro) occupies an area of 321.86 km². By the end of 2007 Bulalacao (San Pedro) was the home of 30,188 residents. Thus by average 93.79 people are living on one km².
Bulalacao is politically subdivided into 15 barangays.
|Benli (Mangyan Settlement)||4,527|
|San Francisco (Alimawan)||778|
|San Roque (Buyayao)||6,044|
|Population census of Bulalacao|
|Source: Philippine Statistics Authority|
During the pre-Hispanic era, Bulalacao was a settlement of Panay migrants called Calido (named after its founder). It was transferred to Kaburayan (from a vine called buray) and was later renamed after sinister birds called bulalacao which shows up whenever people are dying. Fires struck the town on December 24, 1940 (90% of the housed burned) and on July 6, 1950. Because its name was synonymous to a burning meteor, the town was renamed San Pedro by virtue of Republic Act No. 2789. It was later reverted back to its old name.
Buyayao Island is a 206-hectare forest reserve at the southeastern tip of Oriental Mindoro. It has seven pristine white beaches, limestone formations, and about 500 species of flora and fauna. Some of the animals found on the island include large snakes (called sobre cama), bearcats, dears, and squirrels. The island has a sparse population of less than 100 residents. Activities that can be done here include scuba diving and snorkeling (bring your own gear), spelunking in Buyayao Cave, camping, and beach hopping. While you can ask one of the residents to tour you among the island's beaches, beachhopping is best done by boat. This is because the structures inland, such as the road networks, now lay in ruins.
Suguicay Island is an oblong-shaped island, one among the 13 island hopping destinations in Bulalacao. The island has a sandbar and two white beaches, each about 500 meters long. Inland, the island is quite populated, bearing many residential houses. The island's coastlines meanwhile thrive with mangrove swamps. The water surrounding the island is abundant with corals and marine diversity, which makes it an ideal destination for scuba diving and snorkeling. Only cottages and grilling areas can be found on its beaches. Because there is no known establishment on the island, travelers are advised to bring their own camping and cooking equipment, should they wish to extend their stay.
Not to be mistaken with Palawan's Silad Island, the Silad Island of Bulalacao is a bone-shaped island with two corally white beaches and several rock formations. Privately owned, the island is quite small and has a few cemented staircases interconnecting its beaches, hills, and jagged formations. Silad Island is deserted, has no electricity, and no drinking water. It's not advisable to stay here overnight because of its jagged terrains and windy location. Boats could also get stranded during the rainy season. Together with Target Island and Aslom Island, Silad Island makes an excellent island hopping destination in Barangay Milagrosa.
Target Island (Alibatan Island)
Also known as Alibatan Island, Target Island is a stingray-shaped island named so after Americans used the island for "target" bombing practices during the World War II. Exploring the island, you'd see bomb sites and jagged rocks broken into pieces. Privately owned, Target Island has cemented walkways that loop around it. The cemented pathway follows the coastline of the island, around its limestone cliffs, and towards a lake at the center of the island. The lake is teeming with mangrove, and serves as a breeding area for seagulls and sea turtles. From the top of the limestone cliffs, you'd see panoramic views of the lake, the island itself, and its beaches. According to its owner, visitors are not allowed to take photos and stay overnight on the island. Together with Aslom Island and Silad Island, Target Island makes a memorable island hopping activity in Barangay Milagrosa, Bulalacao.
Aslom Island gets its name from the Cebuano word "aslom", meaning sour, because of the abundance of sampaloc trees bearing the sour fruit. The island is one of the major destinations of the island hopping activity in Bulalacao. A 12-hectare private island, Aslom has three white beaches, one of which is a crescent-shaped sandbar that stretches about 500 meters. The two other beaches stretch about 200 meters and 800 meters respectively. The three beaches have coarse to corally white sand, and are interconnected through roads inland. The island is teeming with trees, with only two man-made structures: an unfinished resthouse and a tennis court. There are no other establishments or restaurants on the island. While the island is private, travelers can visit the place for free, although staying overnight is not allowed.
Bagong Sikat Falls
Planning a Trip
Pre-departure planning is important. Here are certain things you should watch for and plan for.
Check with the appropriate consulate or embassy in your country to find out if you will need a visa to visit the country of your destination, especially for an extended period of time. Some countries have extremely detailed and complicated entry/departure laws, and treat visits of a week or two very differently from longer stays.
If you’re traveling to one area, check the cost of living there. If it’s high you’ll probably want to budget more carefully and save some money before leaving. The lower the cost of living the less you’ll have to save, but be sure to have a back up reserve in emergency cases.
Talk to other people who have done a similar trip.
If you don’t know anyone personally, try any of the dozens of online travel web sites full of first-person travel stories covering every possible type of trip.
Plan big and loose. Read everything you can about the area.
There may be sights and attractions you didn’t know about. A rough outline of your trip might have three or four target points and a variety of ways to get between them.
You don’t want to find out that the weather isn’t what you thought, or the guide book was incorrect, after committing to 6 weeks in a specific spot.
Some trips will allow you more leeway than others. Travel plans in Asia can often be made day-by-day while summer travel in Europe should be organized at least a few weeks ahead, unless you’re prepared to hunt around for hotel rooms and train seats.
Set up a pre-trip time-line so you don’t end up with a full todo list your last week of work or school.
Things to consider are doctor’s visits for a check up, inoculations, and prescription refills; purchasing plane tickets; renewing passports and obtaining visas and other documents.
Check your insurance coverage abroad and purchasing additional travel insurance if needed. Don’t forget visiting friends and family members!
The longer the trip, the lighter you should pack. This might seem strange, but it’s true you can afford to lug a heavy bag around for a week or two, but do you want to have anything extra for a year?
Stick to the absolute basics and know what you can and cannot buy at your destination(s). There’s no point in bringing 6 months of toothpaste to Europe or buying a sarong at home to take to the tropics. If you are visiting several climates, try to arrange it so you visit the warmer places first and coldest last. That way you can purchase sweaters and long pants and not have to carry them any more than needed. Alternately, visit cold climates first and then ship unneeded layers home — or sell them off.
A good rule of thumb is to bring one outfit for the hottest day you’re likely to encounter, one for an average day, and one for the coldest.
Make sure everything goes with everything else (if that’s important to you), and remember that layers are always best.
Be prepared for uncomfortable trips. You will often find yourself in a busy, cramped, economy class environment and it could be for many hours – especially long plane trips.
If you want to arrive at your destination refreshed and able to enjoy the sights, then try a good quality travel pillow to support your head, some ear plugs to block out the screaming babies, and an eye cover to block out the sun or cabin lights.
Just avoid those cheap U-shaped pillows from airport shops – your head drops forward and you wake up with a stiff neck.
Make contact with the locals before you go.
Maybe you have a friend-of-a-friend or a foreign exchange student from high school you remember, or just found a friend through a travel web site; almost everyone is happy to welcome a foreign visitor to their home town. This might be as elaborate as a home-stay for a few weeks, or just coffee in their home town or dinner at a locals restaurant.
Brought in by the early settlers who came from the Island of Panay, this festival is done in honor of the town’s patron saints Peter & Paul, and is a way of thanksgiving for the blessings from the sea. The celebration starts in the early hours of the morning, with a flotilla of intricately-decorated boats that will encircle Bulalacao Bay and, landing onshore after, will be met by the townsfolk. Marching will continue on the streets with the icons of the two saints greeted in religious manners by the devotees. A procession is done later at twilight and, ending at the church-ground, the traditional “putong” (crowning) of the patrons complete the final rituals, amidst songs and dances by children and adults alike. A streetdancing is also staged during the day, participated in mostly by students in indigenous costumes. This festival is held every 29th of June, on the occasion of the town fiesta.
Travel planning is about more than just knowing where you're going. Prepares to navigate, take control and be ready for anything. This section helps you steer clear of disaster and stay open enjoy the unexpected.
- Banks– Open Monday to Friday 9am to 2pm. Some banks are closed for lunch.
- Emergencies– For police, dial a local phone number; for ambulance call a hospital.
- Internet Access– Wifi is standard in most hotels and free in many coffee shops.
- Mail– Buy stamps at the Post Office. Convenient post offices are located all cities. Most are open Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm.
- Safety– Pickpocketing can be a common problem. It is suggested for men to keep wallets in their front pocket. Purse snatching also occurs at times.
Getting in from the airport and other arrival locations. Travel planning is about more than just knowing where you’re going. Prepares to navigate, take control and be ready for anything. This section helps you steer clear of disaster and stay open enjoy the unexpected.
- Plane– Flights arrive at the main airport near city center. If flying from European cities, you might land at a connecting airport. There is a tourist information office at the Terminal E, international arrivals, open 8am to 6pm.
- Train– A train station is on the lower level of the airport. To get into the city, follow the marked signs.
- Taxi– From the airport there is a flat-rate for the 1-hour trip, depending on traffic. Hotels charge up to $80 for shuttle service.
- Train & Bus– Trains and buses arrive a city center. This is the transportation hub for the city and is surrounded hotels.
A perfect place for exploring on foot, with local shops around every corner. You will eventually walk somewhere, it’s just going to happen. If you don’t like crowds, uneven cobblestones, heavy traffic or narrow sidewalks, take a taxi or rent a scooter.