I have seen pictures of Sabang Port posted by a photo buddy, but I couldn't quite imagine how/why they looked so laid back...until I saw it for myself. There was no structure whatsoever that would identify the place as Sabang Port. When everybody got off the Filcab van we rode from Naga City, hubby and I knew that it must be the place. And when men came scampering to meet the van, and with loud voices offered to carry passengers' bags, we knew they were the porters.
We travelled light with only one traveling bag for our clothes (which hubby could have carried by himself in addition to his backpack), but we decided to get one porter. The porters walked so fast so we thought we had to be there at once to catch the boat. Our porter offered to carry my backpack, then breezed through small alleys, passed through sandy ground until we reached the beach. He put our traveling bags on a long bench made of bamboos. It turned out to be the waiting area for passengers, conveniently located under the coconut trees. From there, we had a good view of the coastline and Mt. Isarog.
It was a little past 9am, and we expected a boat to leave at 10am because we saw a boat arrive, but we were told that the next trip would be at 11am. Perhaps, it was that way during weekdays on lean months when there were few tourists. Most of the waiting passengers were students, teachers and other Caramoan locals who came from Naga. I was already feeling hungry (only had very light breakfast) and uncomfortable (personal necessity). I looked around but couldn't find a public restroom.
Thanks to my VT bag tag, a curious waiting passenger asked me what Virtual Tourist meant. I guess I warmed up on her, she asked me to join them to have a meal at a nearby carinderia. Hubby didn't want to join us because our bags would be left unattended on the bench, so only I went with them. More than alleviating my hunger pangs, my utmost concern that time was to find a comfort room. Fortunately, the carinderia was just behind, a few steps from the waiting area, and it had a CR for their customers (read about this matter in another tip).
At about 10:20 am, passengers were asked to write on the boat's manifesto. At about 10:30 am, passengers were already allowed to go to the boat. Our boat left Sabang Port before 11am, about 10:45 am. I looked back as we left the port, and appreciated the simple beauty of the small coastal barangay of Sabang.
When we returned to Sabang from Caramoan, I was surprised to see that we didn't dock at the same place where we left for Caramoan. We docked near the Caramoan market. I asked the skipper before I left the boat; he said they dock there when it is not yet low tide. Since we got the first trip (7am) from Caramoan, waters were still high, enabling boats to enter that side of the port.
From Guijalo Port, Caramoan, take the ferry boat back to Sabang. The first regular trip is 7am. Next trip schedule: 8am, 9am and 11am (no 10am trip). Some boats carrying cargo leave at 5 or 5:30am. Some locals or tourists who have to go to Sabang early are allowed to join the trip.more
From Naga City, we opted to ride in the airconditioned Filcab shuttle/van to go to Sabang Port. Shuttle terminal is easily found, just across SM Mall. It is the usual practice to pay the fare (P90/pax ) to the dispatcher just before the van leaves. The van will pass through the towns of Pili, Ocampo, Tigaon, and Goa before reaching Brgy. Sabang in...more
During low tide, the boat cannot dock near the beach. Instead of wading through the waters and getting wet, the passengers "ride" on the porters' shoulders. Its amazing how locals can balance themselves on the shoulders of porters; they straddle on the back neck of the porter or in the case of some ladies, they sit only on one side of the porter's...more
Don't expect a reservation and ticketing office at Sabang Port. It is customary for porters to go ahead of each other to reserve seats for the passengers whose bags they carry. They put the bags on the seats before going back to the shore to fetch/carry the passengers. When you're on board, you just have to look for your bags, and that's where you...more
Bicolanos are generally very friendly and helpful. That's my impression of the people who befriended me. They saw to it that I was served well in the carinderia. They checked to see if hubby and I were seated comfortably in the boat. They even bid us goodbye before going their way.It's nice to befriend Bicolanos who go out of their way to please...more
Unlike in Caticlan where passengers going to Boracay automatically wear their lifevests, or are reminded by the crew to wear their lifevests because it is a legal and safety requirement, I noticed that passengers don't wear their lifevests before leaving Sabang Port. The lifevests are available, but placed overhead the passengers' seats or hang on...more
Although the locals are generally friendly and helpful, it is still wise to keep watch of your personal belongings. Even if your porters offer to watch your things, exercise caution. If you need to go to the comfort room, go alternately with your companions so someone is left to watch your bags. If you are alone, bring your purse and other personal...more