Sunday, October 27, 2013

Danjugan Island Marine Sanctuary and Reserve


Danjugan Island Marine Sanctuary and Reserve, Negros Occidental, Philippines
Danjugan Island Marine Sanctuary and Reserve is one of the peaceful and quiet escape to nature near my hometown, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental. Negros is one of the bigger islands in the 7,107 islands in the Philippines. Though our country is very small in area, but we have that number of islands, so, probably, you can all call us "islanders", since we all live in different islands. Some islands are bigger than others, such as the mainlands of Luzon and Mindanao, some are tiny and uninhabited, like Danjugan. Since technically, we all live in an island, many of us have grown to have an affinity for the sea.  
Approaching Danjugan Island
Danjugan Island is not a commercial island, nor it is a beach resort. This is one of the very small islands surrounding Negros and is uninhabited. The only people in the island are the staffs that maintain this marine reserve and wildlife sanctuary. 
The island has several caves which has been an important habitats for bats.
Can You Guess What Those Are That Clings to the Wall?
They are the same as the one flying above
Danjugan island is a bird sanctuary, there are several species of birds that frequent this island. Actually, though the island is filled with jubilant singing and chirping of birds, but sadly, I was not able to photograph any except the bats :( I saw some, but they were swift and could not take a picture. I heard them, but the dense forest made it hard to find them, you just know they were there hiding somewhere in the leaves, teasing you with their happy noises.
Though a very small island, about 43 hectares in size, but within the islands are several lagoons. 
An Inland Lagoon 
Lagoon Open to the Ocean
There are two lagoons that are open to the ocean, and four of them are surrounded by mangroves. Danjugan is one of the very few small islands in the Philippines that has still its original forest cover and unspoilt vegetation. The length of the island is about 1.5 km (about 0.93 mile) with a maximum width of 0.5 km ( 0.3 mile ). Now, knowing these numbers, you can imagine how small it is! The island rises steeply to 80 m ( 262.5 ft ) and is covered in rainforest. 
Sandy Beach
The island has several sandy beaches, surrounded by rainforest and coral reef, a combination of two of the most bio-diverse ecosystems in the world. The total area of the reserve, which includes both the island and the reef is about 200 hectares. 
Small Boat We Take Going to Danjugan
Since Danjugan is 3 km west of Bulata in Cawayan, Negros Occidental, there is a need to take a small boat from Bulata. Danjugan Island promotes eco-tourism to continue the preservation of the natural resources there and remain unspoiled. The eco-cabanas for the eco-tourists are made of wooden and other indigenous materials, and has no walls on the side that has the sights of the ocean and the sunset. 
This is What You See From Your Cabana, Why Wall Off This View?
There is no airconditioning in the island, electricity is only at night and is solar and wind powered, there are no flushing toilets ( you have to use buckets to flush the toilets), there is no shower, instead, we use pail and dipper to bathe. This is not a typical tourist destination since only 16 people at one time are allowed to spend nights in the island. This is a pure nature destination for those who prefer to have the whole stretch of the white sand beaches to themselves. 
Of course, there are many other more popular tourist destination near my hometown, and a lot of tourists and vacationers would always stop at Boracay, but I always preferred a quieter escape where I can hear a more concentrated sound of nature around me. 
For more about Danjugan Island and how you may be able to help in the preservation of the coral reef and tropical rain forest resources, or how you may be able to spend some days here and do some hiking, snorkeling, diving, etc, please visit Danjugan Island , A Marine Reserve and Wildlife Sanctuary website.  
Facebook Twitter StumbleUpon Digg Delicious Reddit Technorati Mixx Linkedin


  1. Breathtaking views!I didn't know you hail from Negros.And the bats,I used to see them everynight when I was young (uhm that means almost three decades ago hehehe)back in my hometown,Davao.Sadly,they've disappeared,perhaps migrated,over the years.You have photos that are worthy for postcards.

  2. i do so agree with rochelle! such a wonderful place to be. you are lucky to spend your childhood on such wonder you are keen on photography as you are sorrounded by such breathtaking views!

    more! we want more!!!

  3. Fantastice sceneries..It is a beautiful country!

    Some excellent shots as well. That photo of he bat is a good one!

  4. Betchai, you come from such a beautiful place, no wonder you are so into nature! Your photos do look like picture postcards, I love the colors!

  5. thanks rochelle, eng, kirigalpoththa, diane and che.

    haha, yes Che, bats on the wall :)

  6. What a beautiful place to grown up! Fantastic pictures, betchai!

  7. What a beautiful place! Truly paradise. Wow, you actually caught a bat flying during the day? I have never seen a bat except at the zoo.

    Thanks for your comments on my blog as usual! :)

  8. Thanks for the trip, what a beautiful place!

  9. I've lived in the Philippines all my life but i've never been near Negros. Too bad. I guess, I'll have to start saving for a trip there. Great photos of the bats!

    Have a great weekend, Betchai!

  10. this is fascinating.. i can't wait to go back to PI and explore our natures...

  11. Those cliffhangers are fantastic in picture, but won't be good for a visit, am I right? The smell? Huh...

    I love that flying bat; Batman is coming.

  12. Danjugan is a very beautiful place. I like the pictures of the bats. Most people can't get pictures of birds without a lot of determination and then even more practice. You are such a good photographer that you would begin to get great pictures of them quickly with practice.

  13. What a nice island. Reminds of me of the east coast of Malaysia.

  14. What a beautiful place your native country is. Well minus the bats, but I am sure someone loves them LOL. It looks so peaceful there.

  15. Miss Beth,
    Thanks for sharing this... I will surely consider going to this place sometime this year... :)

  16. The sunset and the vies look like worth the sacrifice of the flushing toilet.

  17. Wow, such a beautiful country you have there betchai. So far I've only visited Manila. Maybe I should plan for my next trip to your home country :)

  18. Hello, Betchai and hello Negros Occidental! I have not heard of this hidden beauty! The outrigger just make me miss home. Lovely shots and I have enjoyed the tour. Funny with Che on betchik, or should I say batchik! I did not realize that the bats could curl up that small, that I did not recognize them!
    P.S. I've RSS...

  19. Betchai love your hometown Kimchai ;) i never been to Negros Beth, now through your photos i know now how beautiful Negros is ;) oh, you gave me an idea to post about Camiguin, since i also wanted to create one label all about Philippines ;)

  20. i never went there in bacolod but my parents did and they enjoyed it. I love your island getaway betchai... you made me miss the Phils beaches more. How much I would want to laze around there. very nice set of photos. love it all!

  21. Such a beautiful place and a perfect vacation getaway! I would love to settle there after seeing the amazing and lovely photos!! I've never been to Negros but I would love to visit someday.

    Debbie :)