Aside from the Merloquet Waterfalls adventure, I was also excited to visit the famous Pink Island of Zamboanga. Aside from wanting to spend a day on the beach, I was curious how “pink” the sand was.
Zamboanga Trip: Sta. Cruz also known as “Pink Island”
December 7, 2012
I was told that the corals before were bigger compared to these corals now.
Prior to the trip, we went to the Department of Tourism (DOT) to inquire about the day tour to the island. I’ve heard that tourists need security escorts to avoid unfortunate incidents like kidnapping. To be honest, I was a little hesitant because of this; but we were assured that it’s safe so long as we had these military men with us.
We registered our names at the DOT for reservation. Alternately, you can directly go to the port in Paseo del Mar as walk-in clients.
security escort with his rifle to Sta. Cruz Island
nice day to be at the beach!
I read about the Sta. Cruz Island (also known as Pink Island of Zamboanga) from Chyng’s blog. The island is called such because of crushed red corals that have sort of “mixed” with the white sand.
A few boats with tourists also arrived with each boat having an escort with them. There was plenty of room in the island for everyone. Despite this being near the city, I realized that not enough people visit this destination.
Sta. Cruz Island of Zamboanga!
We ate lunch with food prepared by Jana’s family. I suddenly miss picnics by the beach.
I remember back when I was still a kid; we would always go to Paradise Island Beach Resort in Davao City every weekend (really, every weekend!) and have the whole day to spend on the beach. We’d be there as early as 7am and go home about 4pm.
not many people around
picnic by the beach
After lunch, we explored the other side of the island. I didn’t see much except for a small portion that looked like an abandoned camping site. It looked beautiful with dried leaves on the ground. I was already preparing my camera to take a few more photos when I found tombstones in the area. After realizing that this was a cemetery, I immediately stepped out as it gave me the creeps. No wonder it was so peaceful there.
Watching Too Many Movies
I was reminded of Samurai X and how Kenshin Himura (lead character) buried all the people he killed when he was still known as Battōsai the Slasher. In my mind, I was also thinking that somebody was watching from a distance, waiting to pounce, attack and kill; and I’d end up becoming one of the victims of a B-rated movie. By the way, pardon my imagination.
only took one shot of this place
security with his rifle
We spent the remaining hour taking our last dip in the water before heading back. Time was too short and I’d surely visit Sta. Cruz island again!
The thing is, it’s a bit pricey considering there’s no regular public transportation. You need to pay at least 1000 Php for a boat ride back and forth so it’s expensive to travel solo.
The Pink sand wasn’t really a highlight for me but overall, Sta. Cruz Island is a great beach-fix knowing that it’s only about a 15-20-minute boat ride from the city.
a few more photos
Sta. Cruz Island Rates and Fees
Entrance Fee: 20 Php per person,
Terminal Fee: 5 Php per person
100 Php (small – 6 persons)
200 Php (large – 10 persons)
500 Php (pavilion – 15-30 persons)
1000 Php – 1 to 10 passengers
*Bring your own packed lunch/snacks as there’s no store selling food in the island.
*There’s no fresh water available for washing yourselves off. One of the caretakers said they’re still working on it.
*Payment for the escorts is not required but it’s up to you how much tip you’re going to give.
This trip was made possible by Airphil Express. Airphil Express flies from Cebu to Zamboanga every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Airphil Express also flies to Zamboanga from Manila, Davao, Jolo, and Tawi-Tawi.
Check out my other Zamboanga articles here: