TACLOBAN CITY–Australian cruise liner Coral Adventurer has visited Eastern Visayas, with its first visit port call in Northern Samar’s Biri town, known for its iconic rock formations, and Capul Island, for its historic Galleon port, on Wednesday (Nov. 1).
During their visit to the island town of Biri, the 73 Australian tourists onboard the cruise had the opportunity to fully immerse themselves with the locals.
After the visit on the island towns of Biri and Capul, the cruise also went to Sambawan Island and Maripipi (Biliran), Babatngon and Tacloban City, Himulkilan Island, Inopacan and Canigao Island, Matalom (Leyte) this week.
“Two weeks from now, it’s Limasawa and Padre Burgos (Southern Leyte), and Palompon (Leyte),” said Karen Tiopes, director of the Department of Tourism (DOT)-Eastern Visayas.
“We must be doing something good that cruise tour operators and ship cruise directors trust us to develop and deliver the right kind of shore excursion experience,” she added.
Meanwhile, the Northern Samar Provincial Tourism Office said that the cruise call of the Coral Adventure off Biri’s iconic rock formations on November 1 “has sparked excitement.”
According to the provincial tourism office, the locals “took great joy in showcasing the Filipino brand of hospitality, with each conversation beginning and ending with the heartfelt greeting, ‘Mabuhay,’” it said.
The cruise visit to Northern Samar was arranged in advance by Tiopes and Northern Samar’s Tourism chief, Ma. Josette Doctor, together with the local government of Biri, headed by Mayor Amelita delos Reyes, Biri tourism officer Vicky Mabutin, and other stakeholders.
“The successful cruise call of the Coral Adventurer is poised to have another round in the near future. Their meticulous planning and coordination ensured that the cruise call provided a seamless and unforgettable experience for the Australian tourists,” the provincial tourism office added.
Earlier this year, luxury cruise ship Silver Shadow, with 330 guests onboard, also visited Palompon’s famed Kalanggaman Island, as Eastern Visayas was included among the top local and international destinations recommended by travel experts for “revenge travel” in the post-pandemic period.
(ROEL T. AMAZONA/RONALD O. REYES)