Tablas Island is the largest of the islands in the Province of Romblon in the Philippines.
The name of the island was of Spanish origin. Before the colonialization of the Philippines, Tablas was known as the Island of Osigan. Tropical Tablas has retained its original character. The Wildlife and landscape appears untouched as deep-green vegetation is crossed by rivers and streams. Tablas Island provides a wide variety of outdoor activities. Visitors can explore wonderful waterfalls and caves surrounded by tropical nature. Sig-Kop Cave, Mablaran Falls, Garing Falls, Mainit Falls, or turquoise colored Linao D Victo are natural attractions in Tablas. In the middle of the island scenery becomes hilly and mountainous. The highest mountain is Mt. Payaopao with 665 meters (2182 feet) located in the municipal of San Augustin. But it is not necessary to climb mountains to get stunning views. Through partial winding roads arise magnificent outlooks on surrounding nature. Roads are mostly paved with asphalt some are covered with gravel. Tablas is not nearly as frequented by tourists compared to Boracay. Therefore, the beaches are deserted and quiet.
Odiongan, on the west central coast of the island, is a major port and the largest municipality of Romblon in terms of population. Tablas is administratively subdivided into the municipalities of Alcantara, Calatrava, Ferrol, Looc, Odiongan, San Agustin, San Andres, Santa Fe, and Santa Maria.
The ATM situation on the Tablas Islands is tricky. Even There are several ATM, due to problems with the connection to the internet, there is always a risk of beeing unable to get cash.
May 2018 there are no ATM on Sibuayan Islands which accept creditcards of foreigners. So please do yourself a favor and stack up on Pesos. There are several Pawnshops [for example (M Lhuiller) which offer Dollar exchange.
If you find yourself with Cash on Sibuyan you have the possibility to make an transfer to an M Lhuiller branch to get Cash. This method can be quite expensive but save the day.
Cebu Pacific has recently started flying to Tablas Island. They offer four flights a week from Manila, on Tuesday, Wednesday, Fridays and Sundays. Flight time is about one hour.
Other nearest airports are:
From Caticlan Jetty you can take a Bunka or Ferry to Tablas Island
The main port on Tablas Island is Odiongan with ferry’s running from Batangus City (2 hours south of Manila).
Ferry operators are
From Caticlan Jetty Port (next to Boracay) you can join the Bunka (local ferry) to Looc on Tablas Island. The Bunka usually leaves at 8:30am.Caticlan to Looc takes about 3 hours depending on weather.
To get around the Island you can have Jeepneys and motorized tricycles or you can hire a Motorbike
The Wildlife and landscape appears untouched as deep-green vegetation is crossed by rivers and streams. A portion of the native forest cover has been removed and converted to coconut plantations, or rough grazing. However, the remaining small areas of watershed forest support several species of endemic wildlife that occur only on Tablas, or on just Tablas and Romblon Island. These include the Tablas Fantail Rhipidura sauli, the Tablas Drongo Dicrurus menagei, the Romblon Hawk Owl Ninox spilonota, and the Tablas Bulbul Hypsipetes (siquijorensis) cinereiceps. The frogs Platymantis_lawtoni and Platymantis levigatus are endangered species endemic to Tablas and other islands of Romblon province. In Ferrol at Malcom's Cove, monkeys, sea turtles and the Philippine eagle. In Santa Fe the whale shark (the earth's largest fish) is known to breed. The waters off Looc team with numerous species of tropical fish and sea life in the protected sanctuary. Binucot Beach has manatee, dolphin and sea turtles.