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traveling

Exploring Libertad, Antique Dec 8-10, 2016

Exploring Libertad, Antique

GPS waypoint: 11°46'08.1"N 121°55'05.5"E
Location: Libertad (municipality), Antique (province), Philippines

Eliab Lodging Place
I alighted from the bus in Libertad coming from Pandan, not knowing where I stay. I was pointed to Eliab Lodging by the tricycle drivers and met the affable retired owners who used to be teachers. They were full, but realizing I was also a teacher, they found a way to accommodate me. Such decent people!

Libertad Municipality
Libertad is the last northernmost bus stop on the northwest side of Panay Island. Its proximity to Boracay makes it a short hop away. The town center is small with a few establishments, a school and the municipal building. Libertad has a port serving the Semirara, Culasi and San Jose destinations. It's a slow coastal town with a relaxed pace. The people are welcoming. The peace is disturbed only by the blaring sound of the tricycles and neighboring stores playing top 40 tunes (like most of the country).

Libertad Tourism
Normally, I hesitate dealing with government offices. I find them bureacratic, slow and inefficient. Libertad's tourism office however, is a rare exception. I met the entire staff headed by Mr. Galahad Garcia, or Dondon for short. It's a 6-month old office and they are all new to the job. Perhaps it's a blessing. I found them to be dedicated and even excited at the many challenges facing them. Dondon isn't your arm-chair officer. He rolls-up his sleeve and gets his hands dirty, doing what needs to be done. We talked at length about the vision of the municipality, the challenges, the creative solutions, etc.

I was surprised that he personally took me to all the touristic places - on his motorcycle! He even went inside the cave with me (with a guide)! One good thing about this Ati Cave-Maanghit Cave-Bungan Bungan Spring itinerary is that we strung along 3 destinations on one trip.

Ending Thoughts
BIG Big thanks to Mr. Galahad Garcia and the awesome staff of Libertad's tourism office for making the following blogs happen!

--- TheLoneRider

Next stop: Ati Cave in Libertad

getting work done at my digs at Eliab Lodging Place good cheap eats, batchoy at P25 and Lomi at P28 (US$0.50) tricycles and single motorcycles are the main town transport colorful market scene
main covered market municipal building Libertad Central School Libertad is a charming sleepy town
almost still-life at the port Libertad remains a coastal town dock boat schedule for Caluya, Semirara and San Jose

Google Map Libertad, Philippines

tourist attractions in Libertad tourist attractions hotels in Libertad lodging
  • Eliab Lodging Place - usually full with long-term transients so call first - landline: 036.272.168 | mobile: 0939.318.7737
    across the street from the market along the highway
government offices in Libertad government
  • tourism office Tourism Office - register here for the Maanghit Cave visit
    municipal hall

Libertad Cost Index

(US$1 = PHP 49.87 as of Dec 12, 2016)
  • PHP 250/night Eliab Lodging Place, in front of the market, recommended!
  • PHP 75-450/night price range for Barizo J Lodge by the port (recommended for early 3am departures)
  • PHP 150 motorcycle ride from Libertad to Buruanga
  • PHP 20 motorcycle ride from Libertad to Union

Libertad FYI / Tips

  • northbound, Libertad is the last stop for buses plying the west coast of Panay (Iloilo City to Libertad). If you need to go further north (Union, Buruanga, or Malay), you will have to ride the motorcycle from Libertad, which is more expensive than bus fare
  • bring swim clothes for Maanghit Cave because a swim at Bungan Bungan follows
  • from the town port, there is the Kalayaan Shipping (0920.967.0968 / 0917.563.2817) plying the daily Libertad-Caluya route (leaves Libertad 3am, arrives Caluya 5:30am / leaves Caluya 7pm, arrives Libertad 9:30pm)
  • the Banigan Festival, Libertad's town fiesta happens mid-March
  • Libertad Tourism email: lgu_libertad@yahoo.com | libertad_antiquetourism@yahoo.com
  • Libertad Tourism telephone: 036.278.1501 | 0929.419.7530

How to Get to Libertad

  • from Boracay - take the Ceres bus bound for Iloilo via Pandan (not via Capiz). Get off at the Pandan Hospital junction and take another northbound bus for Libertad.
  • from Iloilo (or from the west coast of Panay) - take any northbound bus for Libertad. You can get off at the main city in front of the market

Attractions in Libertad

  • Maanghit Cave - deep cave with big cathedral-like expanse with knee-deep stream spawned by a spring
  • Bungan Bungan Spring - refreshing dip on this river spawned by the spring inside Maanghit Cave. Ideal for dipping after the cave visit
  • Ati Cave - shallow cave used in the summer by banig weavers
  • Banig Weaving - cottage industry using the native bariw to weave them into straw mats
  • Banig Festival - annual town fiesta in celebration of their banig industry
  • Pucio Point - view, marine sanctuary with big fish
  • Parigusan It Pari - clean river located at Sitio San Juan, Brgy. San Roque
  • Tabadsoy Falls
  • Kinyan Falls - in Cubay, about 1-hour hike
  • Pangitanan Falls - at Inyawan, 3-hour hike

Libertad Blogs by TheLoneRider

Suggested itinerary on the WEST coast of Panay Island from Boracay going south

  1. Boracay - most popular beach in the Philippines
  2. Malay - Nabaoy River, Pangihan Cave, Nagata Falls, Agnaga Falls, Naasug Point, Malay Ecological Park, Motag Living Museum
  3. Nabas - wind tubines, Hurom-Hurom Cold Springs
  4. Pandan - Malumpati Spring
  5. Libertad - Maanghit Cave, Ati Cave and Bungan-Bungan Spring
  6. Sebaste - Igpasungaw Waterfall
  7. Culasi - Malalison Island
  8. Tibiao - hot kawa-bath, white water river rafting, Bugtong Bato Waterfall, rice terraces, Tibiao Bakery, pottery, fish spa
  9. Anini-y - Nogas Island, scuba diving

Suggested itinerary on the EAST coast of Panay Island from Boracay going south

  1. Boracay - most popular beach in the Philippines
  2. Malay - Nabaoy River, Pangihan Cave, Nagata Falls, Agnaga Falls, Naasug Point, Malay Ecological Park, Motag Living Museum
  3. Nabas - wind tubines, Hurom-Hurom Cold Springs
  4. Kalibo - Bakhawan Eco-Park, Tigayon Hill
  5. Tambak - oysters
  6. Capiz - Roxas City
  7. Carles | Estancia - Gigantes Island Boat Tour, Lighthouse of Gigantes Island and Bakwitan Cave of Gigantes Island
  8. Iloilo - Batchoy Indulgence
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Dec 8-10, 2016



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