Who would have thought there’s a mangrove islet you can find in Southern Leyte? Well, really, mangroves are not that rare in tropical countries like the Philippines.
Mangroves can create natural reclamation. Apart from that, they’re also a good solution to prevent or should I say, lessen the impact of storm surge and tsunamis.
One Sunday afternoon, “the family”, went to Mahayahay, Maasin City to visit this mangrove islet my aunt was talking about. We headed to Pajag Seafood Restaurant. Pajag also means payag in Cebuano. People in Southern Leyte use similar dialect with the people in Bohol.
How to get there?
The main entry point is the Pajag Seafood Restaurant in Mahayahay, Maasin. It’s closer to Barangay Pamahawan, which hosts the Maasin airport. If you are from Bato, Leyte it should be before the city area. If you are travelling from the Maasin City area, it should be before Matalom. Just ask the friendly locals if you think it’s hard for you to locate it.
What to expect?
The place is a picturesque. But you should not expect that it’s a great place to swim. (We’ve seen a banded sea snake along the way). The short boardwalk along the mangroves is not that bad in terms of beauty. You need to be careful though, some parts were already worn out. I really hope the management will be able to fix that out to avoid accidents.
From the restaurant, you can see several mangrove islets. Most of the mangroves species on the islet are Pagatpat, Bakhawan and Manyapi. (Perks of having a Marine Biology cousin who came along with me during the trip).
You need to take a less than 10-minute motorized banka ride going to the islet. Locals say that you can walk right to it if it’s a low tide. But I really don’t think it’s a great idea for me since I just saw a poisonous sea snake at the boardwalk.
Since it’s an islet full of mangroves, you should expect it muddy. There are white sand in some areas but it’s not as fine in Kalanggaman Island (Palompon) or Digyo Island (Inopacan). Again, it’s not a great place to swim but if you enjoy getting seashells or would want to chill, you’re in a good place. Locals do say that if the tide is really high, people will enjoy it better.
You can also bring your hammock too and you can chill in your duyan. (insert Zanjoe Marudo’s Chill Sa Aking Duyan song)…
There’s also a huge Sto. Niño in the islet. It’s visible from Pajag.
Checkout some of the pictures during our trip: