Finding quiet in Isla Reta

Everyone needs a getaway place. But nobody needs it more than introverts who thrive on their much-needed solitude. Trust me, I know. I’m an introvert.

Finding quiet in Isla Reta is one of this year’s highlights. Some friends who’ve been there highly recommended it early this year. I’ve visited it twice already since then.

It’s not a fully developed resort where you can expect amenities like infinity pools, restaurants, cafes, and whatever attractions that entice many people to the beach. What it has, however, is rustic charm that soothingly gets to you.

The resort sits mostly undisturbed adjacent to a small village in Talicud Island. It’s fairly easy to travel there. Tourists and locals take the trip by boats either from the Island Garden City of Samal or from Davao City’s Sta. Ana Wharf. Boat schedules are usually between 9:00AM to 4:00PM from Sta. Ana Wharf and 8:00AM to 3:00PM from Talicud Island. There’s a boat that ferries passengers directly to Isla Reta but it’s not reliable as clockwork since there was none the second time I was there. It’s a non-issue though since the resort is just about 10-15 minutes leisurely walk from Talicud’s wharf.

Isla Reta’s appeal is it’s deserted atmosphere. It’s increasingly becoming a popular destination especially for locals but it has managed to maintain the simplicity that first draw me. You can do your own thing there without being disturbed by overly eager service staff. In fact, although polite and helpful, the staff pretty much leave you alone. Unless you specifically request for something, they won’t bother you at all. But they provide whatever you need as long as it’s available.

The people I’ve seen in my visits there seem to be quiet themselves. I first wondered how groups of people can produce far less noise than usual when they seem to be having a great time as well. Not a sign in sight demanding silence, but it’s generally what you get. I imagine it’s part of its charm. Maybe the place itself can absorb noises and replace it with soothing sounds.

The sounds are many. That much I recall with great delight. The crashing of the waves as they hit the shore, the rustling of leaves caressed by refreshing sea breeze, the cackling of native chickens roaming around pens, the chirping of crickets at night, and that peculiar sound of silence you hear when everything goes quiet – all that and more leave you feeling at peace with the world.

It’s not all about what you hear in that little corner of the island either. Isla Reta has a simple beauty that captures you. There are trees that line the shore, off-white fine sands that beg for a lie-down, picnic huts and tables as well as cottages with a verdant hill at their backs. And when you sit on the shallow part of the water, you feel sandwiched between the charming resort behind you and another island before you. There you will find no better place to enjoy the sights and listen to the sounds that only nature provides.

Rustic, quaint, and extremely charming. I’ve been to one of the more expensive resorts of Samal Island. I can honestly say that I felt happier in Isla Reta. Away from crowds, with none of the usual comforts and amenities, that little place off Talicud Island gave me exactly what I need. A chance to unwind and replenish the energy drained by the daily routines of my life.

If you’re planning a trip to Isla Reta, these information might be helpful. Note that these were existing rates on my trip there early this year.

Boat Fare from Sta. Ana Wharf, Davao City ~ Php60-70 (travel time: approximately 45 mins. to 1 hour)

Entrance Fees:

  • Daytour – Php 75.00/head
  • Overnight – Php 150.00/head
  • Overnight (Kids) – Php 75.00/head
  • 3 years old and below – Free
  • 4 to 10 years old/half – Php 35.00

Cottages:

  • Picnic Hut – Php150.00/night
  • Picnic table – Free of charge

Accommodation:

  • Concrete Room (2 pax max) – Php 800.00/night
  • Native Room (3 pax max) – Php 700.00/night
  • Dormitory Type (15 pax max) – Php 3,500.00
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