‘Island of No Return’: Small Island but Big in History


Island of No Return Small Island but Big in History COVER

If there is one thing that makes tourists keep coming back to the Philippines or makes them love our country, for sure it’s because we are truly blessed with thousands of beautiful islands. But, unbeknownst to some, there’s this one island in Palawan that is said to be the ‘Island of No Return’… (whaaat??) Would you dare visit this place?

To clear things up, let us look back the history and unveil the truth lying behind its name.

image credit: culionsanitariumandgeneralhospital.com

Back to May 27, 1906, Culion, Palawan which is also called the Island of the Living Dead or Island of No Return used to be a place for the first contingent of 370 patients from Cebu. Since then, a community of patients together with the health workers has started to build a town where lepers can live away from the disgust and judgment. Thus, made the island to become a colony of lepers. It may be harsh to know that those unfortunate people have to suffer that kind of isolation, but at some point, it is still a good thing for them to live a normal life away from the judgmental eyes of many. And as most of us know, leprosy is an incurable disease during those times.

image credit: blog.mailasail.com

A loooong century has passed and the problem has come to meet its remedy. In 2006, the World Trade Organization put an end to the nightmare as they declare the place leprosy-free. Cheers to the physicians and scientists who never stopped to develop a cure and better treatment options!

You now know the story behind this island which remained unspoiled all these years. I will ask you again, would you dare visit the Island of No Return? Yes? That’s great! Continue reading…

How to get to Culion:

If you think there’s a direct flight to Culion, it’s a no no.

From Manila, you need to take a flight to Busuanga and ride a van or shuttle that will take you to Coron Town, once you’re there, ride a boat to Culion. Coron to Culion ferries depart daily at 1:00 – 1:30pm and return from Culion to Coron at 7:30 – 8:00am. Please take note that there will be only one ferry available every day, so, it is suggested to not miss this. However, there are some Coron-based tourism operations that arrange day trips to Culion and usually includes packaged historical tours.

Things to do in Culion

1. Pay a visit at La Inmaculada Concepcion Church known as Culion Church

image credit: lakwatsera de Primera

2. Understand more about the history of the town by traveling back in time at Culion Museum and Archives

image credit: IG / jo.go.po

3. Put your flippers and goggles on and go snorkeling at Crowning Glory Reef, a Marine Protected Area in Culion

image credit: FB / Sheila Mendoza-Barce

4. Experience the native fishing method – Kawil Fishing

image credit: FB / Joel Austria Panganiban

5. Take a selfie with cannons at Fort Culion

image credit: FB / Travel Up

6. Enjoy a magnificent view at Aguila Viewpoint

image credit: Ig / b2khs

7. Walk through the Old Presidencia (old prison)

image credit: thepoortraveler.net

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