Last updated: 11:00 PM ET, Mon July 06 2015

Opinion Home | Notes from the Goats

  • Nick and Dariece | July 6, 2015 11:00 PM ET

    An Island All to Ourselves: A Travel Tale from the Philippines

    An Island All to Ourselves: A Travel Tale from the Philippines

    All photos courtesy of Goats on the Road

    Ever since sailing the Quirimbas Archipelago in Mozambique and sleeping under the stars, we've become hooked on finding islands all to ourselves. Lucky for us, when we were in the Philippines, we were able to do just that.

    This island nation is made up of 7,107 islands and we happened to find a secluded, deserted atoll just for us, for two days.

    The idea came about over a bottle of local rum one evening. We were having cocktails on the beach with two of our new friends from England when Nick suggested we hire a boat and driver to drop us off on an island somewhere off of the coast of El Nido, and leave us there for a couple of days to fend for ourselves. Since we had already done this sort of thing in Mozambique, I knew Nick wasn't joking, but our new friends just figured he'd had one too many rums.

    The following morning, after realizing how serious Nick was about this brilliant plan, the four of us set out to find a boat and gather up some essential supplies for our island adventure. The guesthouse we were staying at helped us arrange a boat and driver to drop us off early in the morning and pick us up the following day in the evening, providing a day and a half to explore.

    After speaking with some locals, we decided on our island, which was about a 45-minute boat ride off of the coast of Palawan. When we pulled up at our temporary home, we all had perma-grins on our faces. We waved goodbye to the driver and crossed our fingers that he would remember to pick us up the following day!

    Excitedly, we started setting up our camp. Mosquito nets were hung from overhanging tree branches to serve as our tents, while sheets were put down on the sand to act as our bed for the night. We found some large logs to use as chairs, dug a hole in the sand for a fire-pit and went out searching for wood to burn.

    The rocky limestone island was perfect. The crystal clear water was incredible for swimming, and there was a reef a few meters off shore, which made for some great snorkeling, and gave the boys a place to try their hand at spear fishing.

    Fortunately, we had purchased some food from Palawan before setting off, as the fishing wasn't a success! The snorkeling was fantastic though with pristine coral, sea snakes, rays and a wide variety of fish.

    After exploring "our" island, we started a fire, prepared dinner, opened yet another bottle of rum and relaxed. The sunset that evening is still one of the nicest ones we've seen in all of our travels. The sky lit up and was painted with brilliant pinks and oranges. This was definitely the perfect end to our perfect day on our pristine island.

    Getting off the beaten path and finding a slice of paradise all for ourselves is something that we always try to achieve while travelling. But, you don't have to go to the extremes of sleeping on a deserted island, just venturing away from the main tourist areas will get you off the beaten track, and will surely provide some lasting memories.

    For more on the Philippines, check out our Budget Backpacking Guide to The Philippines.


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Nick and Dariece Notes from the Goats

Nick and Dariece Nick and Dariece are the couple behind Goats On The Road, a website designed to inspire others to live a financially sustainable, location independent lifestyle. Masters at making money abroad and turning their travels into a way of life, they've been on the road since 2008 and have explored some of the least visited places on earth, finding adventure wherever they go. They are also full time contributors at Credit Walk where they share their expertise of making money and travelling forever. Check them out at Goats On The and follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.
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