More than 70 Australian tourists from the Coral Adventurer Expedition Cruise visited the province of Marinduque on Wednesday, November 8. 📸 Erwin Penafiel

BOAC, Marinduque — Two international cruise ships are expected to arrive in the island province of Marinduque this year, a tourism official in the region announced.

According to the report, the Mimaropa region (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan) will welcome a total of 37 cruise calls this year.

On the recent schedule of cruise calls as of January 8, Palawan will welcome a combined number of 28 cruise calls in Puerto Princesa City, Coron, El Nido, and Balabac Islands.

Apo Reef Natural Park and Lubang Island in Occidental Mindoro have four scheduled cruise calls while the province of Romblon currently has three.

More than 40,000 passengers and crew are expected to dock in Mimaropa throughout the year.

Coral Adventurer cruise ship visits the heart-shaped island

With a total of 73 Australian tourists onboard, the successful dock of the Coral Adventurer cruise ship on November 8, 2023 created another milestone in the province which signifies tourism boost for the island.

The vibrant welcome began as the Australian visitors stepped onto the port of Cawit where they were greeted by the morions and Pangkat Kalutang from Bangbang, Gasan. The crowning moment of this welcome was the performance of the traditional Putong/Tubong, an ancient Marinduque ritual that signifies the guests’ arrival.

📸: MSC Sining at Kultura

They were also welcomed by Governor Presbitero Velasco Jr., who showed enthusiasm in accommodating the guests. He also expressed his gratitude for making Marinduque as one of the destinations by the travel agencies.

“I am very glad that we are being visited by different tourists. In fact, the local government is really aiming to invite local and international tourists to strengthen the tourism in our province,” Velasco added.

The adventure continued as the guests embarked on a walking tour through Boac’s ancestral houses. These beautifully preserved colonial townhouse structures tell the story of the province’s rich history where it blends with modern-day commercial establishments. It’s a journey through time and architecture, a glimpse into the island’s evolution over the years.

Rick Anderson, who is one of the tourists onboarding the cruise ship, expressed his amusement on the island including the fantastic reception that makes him love the Philippines.

“We are actually delighted to be here on your beautiful island. The reception is fantastic! We love the Philippines,” said Anderson

As the tour progressed, the guests gained deeper insights into the island’s historical identity. A guided tour of the National Museum unraveled the ancient relics of the island’s marine heritage. The visit to the Boac Cathedral revealed the deep spirituality that shaped it’s culture for generations.

📸: Erwin Penafiel

The tourists also experienced a stroll through the town’s public market where they witnessed the daily offerings of island life and tried haggling for local products.

As the exclusive island tour neared its conclusion, guests had the opportunity to witness the true craftsmanship and observed the art of creating morion masks.

Marinduque’s warm hospitality and rich cultural heritage left an indelible mark on the Australian visitors. The exclusive island tour promises to be a journey of discovery, blending history, tradition and the vibrant spirit of Marinduque into an unforgettable adventure.

Moreover, Congressman Lord Allan Velasco shared in an interview that part of his dream for the province is to highlight the beauty of the island including the focus on transportation. He added his vision of having regular flights and reservation systems on the shipping companies to further boost the province’s tourism and economy. — Marinduquenews.com

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