La Union is not just about those big waves and party scenes. If you want to see something different on your next visit to this province, don’t forget to add Immuki Island to your list. Immuki Island is one of the newest attractions developed by the government and locals to attract more visitors. It is now dubbed as “The hidden paradise of the north” and I couldn’t agree more! It is located in the Brgy. Paraoir, Balaoan, La Union just about a 30-minute ride from San Juan, La Union.
Knowing Immuki Island
Immuki Island was once known as “Kaparingitan” to the locals. The name “Immuki” came from a sea creature that can only thrive on the “Paringit” (dead corals) called sea slugs or babao or bao which is a Pangasinense word translated in Ilocano as “Uki” or female genital. The word Immuki has been associated with the island because the shape of its main lagoon also resembles that of the female genital.
Basically, Immuki Island is a dead coral island with three main lagoons surrounded by mangroves. The main lagoon being called Immuki as explained earlier, the other two lagoons were named out of the wide imagination of the locals. The other lagoons were called “Bimmuto” (male genital) and “Immubet” (anus) because their shape resemble that of the penis and anus.
How to go to Immuki Island?
As per locals, there are Darigayos bound jeepneys that passes by Brgy. Paraoir from San Fernando and San Juan. Based on experience, we had a hard time waiting for the said jeepney during our last stay in San Juan so if you don’t have a private ride going to Immuki Island, you can go there by these options:
- Ride a tricycle that will take you directly to Brgy. Paraoir where Immuki Island is located which will costs around Php 600-800 depends on how you negotiate with your driver.
Ride a Bacnotan bound jeepney and drop off at Bacnotan Public Market (fare: Php 20 from San Juan). From there, look for a tricycle that will take you to Brgy. Paraoir that should cost you Php 200 per ride (good for 4 pax).
What to expect?
Upon reaching the barangay hall of Paraoir, you have to register your visit first and pay the following fees:
- Students/Senior citizens/PWD rate – Php 30
- Regular rate – Php 50
Once you are done with the registration, you may now proceed to the island. You may rent a bamboo raft that will take you directly to the island for Php 250 (good for 6 pax) or you may simply walk going to the island as the water level is just below the knee. We opted to just walk so we could take photos along the way and explore more on the other sides of the island.
Upon reaching the main island, you’ll understand why it is being called a hidden paradise. You have to walk through maze of mangroves that will lead you to its stunning lagoons. You will enjoy its crystal-clear waters and every corner is definitely a picture worthy spot. During our visit, the whole island is not that crowded knowing that it was weekend, since there are 3 lagoons you can choose and will surely love.
Other things to know before going:
- Visiting hours in the island is from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM
- Camping, bringing of foods and drinks, fishing and bringing of pets is not allowed in the island
- Comfort Rooms are available after the registration area
- There are also foods and souvenirs for sale available after the registration area