Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Guisi Lighthouse and Beach

Guisi Beach is about an hour away from Raymen  and the lighthouse is located on an elevated portion of land overlooking the beach to the right. The main attraction was an 18th century lighthouse that guided mariners passing the Iloilo and Guimaras strait. The working lighthouse is a steel and solar-powered one, and the third lighthouse built in the property.

Guisi Beach and this old lighthouse is such a tourist destination because it is both historic and romantic. The caretakers told us that there have been talks of restoring the old lighthouse to its former glory (as it was judiciously stripped of every bolt and nut that could be taken from it by the locals during a chaotic time in our history). The beach is pristine, the sand golden-yellow and around 5-10 minutes away from the lighthouse (through a trail just off the gate to the lighthouse property).

We originally thought that the ruins of a former home was that of an old Spanish family but it was actually the ruins of a Spanish-colonial outpost: Coast Guard barracks in style (because those walls were massive!)

ruins of the old settlement

it was really beautiful... beautiful enough for a wedding

the old lighthouse in its rustic grandeur (and by rustic, I mean rust, haha)

it was a little scary going up because of all the rust

but the windows going up offer chances to shoot pictures

the top of the second, usually-forgotten, lighthouse, as taken from the top of the old (first) lighthouse

the unpleasant-looking modern-day contraption that is the third (and working) lighthouse (but yes, kudos that it is solar-powered)

view of Guisi Beach from the top of the old lighthouse

the top of the lighthouse has no railings, my hubby and I had to make do with one big screw jutting out of a central post... view is breathtaking, wind is fierce, and our knees were buckling

 and if you fall... you either fall on the rocks or on the trees (and maybe tumble onto the sea)

Now... going to the beach requires a downhill trek and some balancing act on makeshift bridges over rocks. We decided not to go to the main beach and settled in one corner away from the resorts and boats.

Guimaras seas are just clean and clear

we were having so much fun that we didn't take a lot of pictures (plus, we had our sons frolic naked) but I hope you appreciate how almost-white the sand is, and how clear the water is; one of the beach pockets at low tide

A trip to Guisi Lighthouse is usually included in the inland tour of Guimaras. For those interested in staying, however, at their Heritage Cottage, you might want to contact the following:
Mrs. Marilyn Cordero, Ms. Joyce Ojeda, Jose Garonita
091559466061 / 09274640488 / 09154570088

The caretakers told us that water is hard to come by at the property and that they have to haul that in for guests at the Heritage Cottage. 

I don't know much about the resorts on Guisi Beach but I do know that guests often complain about the lack of food options there, as told to us by the man who collected the entrance fee (P10) and had us sign the registration book. He also accompanied my 4-year old son to the top of the lighthouse and assisted us in going down to the beach.

Like what I said, Guisi is about an hour away from Raymen Beach Resort on a multicab (with no traffic whatsoever) so best not to do it in the afternoon as a first destination (especially if you're going swimming) since other sites might already be closed before you get there. And again, water is hard there so if you want to shower, maybe head towards the resorts: Guisi Clearwater Resort and Kenyama Resort.

The sand is still finer at Alubihod Beach but Guisi Beach offers interesting rock formations and beach pockets. Also, it is a longer stretch of beach.

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