BURDEOS: WILD RAW AND BEAUTIFUL
Burdeos is an undiscovered nature-lover’s paradise. It has many fine white-sand beaches, spectacular caves, undeveloped waterfalls, mangrove forests, fish and bird sanctuaries, pearl farms, reefs, and rich aquatic resources. It has notable snorkeling and diving areas that are waiting to be explored and spectacular caves and rock formations. This quaint town is composed of 14 barangays, 13 of which are still considered rural and about 25 islands which are potential tourist destinations. Being remote and difficult to reach is both a blessing and a curse for this coastal town. Mainstream tourists haven’t discovered Burdeos yet which is such a shame because it has more to offer than many towns in Quezon Province combined. On the other hand, it has been able to maintain the beauty of its natural attractions and is now undergoing biodiversity conservation.
Visiting Burdeos is like stepping back in time. Like the other towns in Polillo Island, there is no regular public transport that connects Burdeos to the other towns. There is only one jeepney trip that goes between Polillo Town and Burdeos each day. Locals prefer to travel by motorboats while visitors rent either a tricycle or motorbike to get around the town. Out of 14 barangays only 6 have electricity and the water supply is still from deep well/spring. If you are the type of traveler who prefers the off-the-beaten path in the Philippines, Burdeos will not disappoint and might even surpass your expectations.
Researching places to visit in this area, however, was as difficult as getting to the town itself. We arrived at Burdeos with only a list of places to go – we had no idea where to stay, where to eat or what to expect. Aside from a brief description of the natural tourist attractions found in the area, the only thing we found online was the news about a soldier who got shot a day before we left for Polillo Island so the area was on red alert the whole time we were there. We were a little worried about the situation but it didn’t cross our mind to cancel the trip – it wasn’t our first time visiting the more remote areas of the Philippines, so we knew what to expect.
Our adventure started when we left the comfort of Isla Polillo Beach Resort and traveled for about an hour to Barangay Poblacion in Burdeos. Unfortunately, I forgot that all the stores would be closed on Holy Friday so we weren’t able to buy water, food and other supplies. Saying that the people of Burdeos are hospitable and friendly would be an understatement. They were extremely generous in sharing the little things they have and were exceedingly helpful throughout our stay on the island.
Our four-day stay on the island was a great learning experience for me in facing my fears, on survival, on trust and on appreciating nature in all its simplicity and rawness. Burdeos is simply beautiful and I hope it will stay that way for a long time to come.
NATURAL TOURIST ATTRACTIONS IN BURDOES (Places we visited)
- Anilon Island and Anilon Cave
- Anawan Island
- Buguitay Island
- Ikulong Island (Peal Farm)
- Puting Bato Island (Pearl Farm and Caves)
- Malaguinuan Island (Malaki and Maliit)
- Minasawa Island (Bird Sanctuary)
- Binumbunan Island
- Bakaw-Bakaw Island (Mangrove Forest)
OTHER NATURAL WONDERS
- Sitio Bayabas Waterfalls (5km from Poblacion)
- Sitio Bulalon Waterfalls (7km from Poblacion)
- Barangay Auyon Waterfalls (10km from Poblacion)
- Sitio Bulaon Cave (a cave in Barangay Poblacion with a stream of clear and cold water inside. It also serves as a shelter of “Layang-Layang”. The droppings of this bird are used as fertiliser.
BURDEOS GEOGRAPHICAL LOCATION
The municipality of Burdeos is geographically located in on the Northeastern part of Polillo Island in the first congressional district of the province of Quezon, a town that is trapezoidal in shape, facing the vast Pacific Ocean. It is bounded on the north by the Pacific Ocean; on the Northwest by Panukulan Quezon, on the South by Polillo, Quezon; on the Southeast by Lamon Bay and Jomalig, Quezon, on the Northeast by Patnanungan, Quezon and on the West by Panukulan.
Approximate distance from Burdoes to Barangay Anawan, Polillo by land is around 17km, then from Anawan to Real Port, by sea, is about 42km, then from Real Port to Lucena City is approximately 105km
HOW TO GET TO BURDEOS
Burdeos can be reached either via Mauban, Quezon or via Infanta/ Real, Quezon. Raymond Bus Terminal in Legarda under the Nagtahan Bridge is the only bus company that goes straight to Real and Infanta via Ortigas Avenue passing through Rizal and Laguna. Fare is around 200 pesos. First trip starts as early as 2am just in time to catch the 5a.m. trip of the motorized banca in Real Ungos Port going to Polillo Port.
1. Mauban Port to Burdeos – about 5-6 hours in good weather conditions
2. Infanta/ Real Port to Polillo Port– 2-3 hours by a motorized banca.
3. Polillo to Burdeos proper – upon reaching Polillo Town, there is one jeepney that goes to Burdeos at 10a.m. Tricycle or motorbikes can also be rented. It takes an hour and 15 minutes to reach Burdeos Town proper along Burdeos-Polillo Road.
Fare: starts at 200 per head (motorbike and tricycle)
4. Real Port to Barangay Anawan Port – this is the recommended route if you want to go directly to Burdeos. It takes about 3 hours to reach Barangay Anawan by ferry and another 30 minutes overland to reach the town proper of Burdeos
Fare: (Real) Ungos Port to Barangay Anawan (motorized banca) – Php120
Barangay Anawan to Burdeos (by jeepney) – Php100
5. Lucena City to Burdeos – 45 minutes via chopper.
There is only one existing hotel located at Poblacion, Burdeos, Quezon- Kuya Von Lodging House. We would have stayed here on our last night in Burdeos but Mayor Gil and his wife were very hospitable and allowed us stay at their place when we dropped by for a courtesy visit.
Day 2: We rented a van together with the other guests of the resort and went to the quaint town of Burdeos. We went Island-hopping at Anilon Island and had a short walk to Anilon Cave at the end of the beach. We then had lunch and went swimming at Anawan Island before heading to Buguitay Island. Unfortunately the waves were too big so we weren’t able to dock near the shore so we asked the boatman to drop us at Ikulong Island where we camped for the night ala survivor.
Day 3: Our boatman fetched us the next day from Ikulong Island and took us to Puting Bato Island where we explored two of its caves. After that, we headed to the beautiful Island of Malaguinoan, which was my favorite among the beaches we had visited. We finally braved the big waves from the Pacific Ocean to get to the Minasawa Bird Sanctuary. On our way back to Burdeos Pier, we had a short stop at Binombonan Island and the Bakaw-Bakaw Island where hundreds of mangroves abound.
Day 4: We took the first and only jeepney trip early in the morning to the pier and had a few hours of boat ride back to Real, Quezon Pier.