The picturesque four small islands, located off the towns of Inopacan and Hindang in the southern part of Leyte, have been considered as one of the region’s destinations for cruise tourism this summer.
The islands of Digyo, Apid, Mahaba part of Inopacan town and Himokilan of Hindang town also collectively known as Cuatro Islas Protected Landscape and Seascape.
“Cuatro Islas is very much prepared for tourism because for the past few years every time we attend travel fairs, it is one of the places with the most inquiries,” said Department of Tourism regional office senior tourism officer Rina Apostol.
The destination has been added for cruise tourism on top of Limasawa, Southern Leyte; Kalanggaman in Palompon, Leyte and Capul in Northern Samar.
A cruise ship is expected to arrive in the region later this month with a visit to the Cuatro Islas included on its itinerary.
The islands’ pristine waters, white sand and being declared as protected areas are among their attractions for the tourists.
Of the four islands, Digyo is considered the smallest occupying 4.5 hectares but is the most popular among tourists. Diving, snorkeling, and kayaking are the activities to be done in the islands aside from swimming.
Apid is the farthest island with boat makers and mat weavers among its residents.
Mahaba Island, the second largest island, is named due to its elongated shape with majestic rock formations. But its hidden treasure is a small lagoon about 10 minutes’ walk from the shoreline where rare species of small red shrimp are found.
There is also a cave on the island that is the haven for the furious nut-cracking coco crabs locally known as “tatus” or “alikway.”
The island is also home to the endangered mangrove species locally called “bantolinao”.
Himokilan is the largest of the four with 48 hectares land area and is shaped like a large boat floating above blue waters.
The site also offers the best spot and trails for camping and mountain-trekking, exploring the cave and bats watching. (Roel T. Amazona/PNA)