Olango Island

Island Name: Olango Island
Population: 8,507
Major Occupation: Shell Craft Exporter, Tropical Fish Exporter, Fishermen
Sea Shore Details: Corals and White Sand Southern Part of Island
Tourist Accommodation: Cottages Available for Tourists
Snorkeling: B
Diving: B
Distance Estimate Travel Time: 20 minutes from Maribago
Attraction: Bird Sanctuary, Cottages, Floating Restaurant, Mangrove Jungle
Comments: Shallow Coral Around Island. Tricycle Major Transportation Whole Island. Bed town of Mactan and Cebu.


Olango Island

Located five kilometers east of Mactan Island, Olango Island lies between the Bohol Strait to the south and the Camotes Sea to the north. To the east is the Olango Channel while to the west is the Hilutungan Channel. It has seven barangays, one of which is Sta. Rosa (erroneously used to refer to the whole of Olango Island), where the island’s wharf and parish church is located. Olango island hosts seven Lapu-Lapu city ba-rangays, namely, Baring, Caw-oy, Sabang, Santa Rosa, Talima, Tingo and Tunga-san

How to get there

From Cebu City, take a jeepney for Lapulapu City. The jeepney terminal near the old White Gold Department Store, in the reclamation area. Upon arrival in Lapulapu City, go for the tricycle bound for Dapdap or Angasil. Disembark at the Mar Y Cielo Beach Resort. Take a pumpboat for Santa Rosa (in Olango island). From the Santa Rosa Wharf, the sanctuary can be reached by tricycle or foot.



Olango Island supports the largest concentration of migratory birds found so far in the country. Migration starts from the breeding places of birds in Siberia, Northern China and Japan. Anticipating the scarcity of food and winter cold, these birds fly as far as Australia and New Zealand from late July until late November. This is usually referred to as the Southward Migration. By late February until May, these birds return to their breeding grounds in the reverse Northward Migration.

Based on data gathered so far, the birds use Olango as a major refueling station as well as a wintering ground. At Olango, the birds can replenish their fat reserves by feeding on rich supply of invertebrates in the intertidal mudflats. These fat reserves must fuel the birds on the next lap of their journey which may cover from 3,000 to 15,000 km. of non-stop flight. Land area – 1,022.6228 has.

O l a n g o – I s l a n d ,
to the south "expanding to double-size" during low-tide, is home and breeding place to many species of birds.  Also for thousands of migration birds, this island is just "transit" station and resting place on their way from nestling areas in Sibiria or Northern China to winter "vacation" destinations in New Zealand or Australia, and back again.
The bird sanctuary can be visited during the whole year. Ferry connections are available – for example – from ANGASIL at Mactan’s northeast coast to SANTA ROSA on Olango’s west coast; tricycles are connecting service to barangays and sitios at the entrance to the place where the birds can be observed.
Best time to arrive, is with high tide and you can walk – during low tide – far into the area. Few Tour Operators offer packages including picknick for a much higher price than one have to pay for "public" transportation which is not more "unsafe" than some "Colorum" or "private" boats used by Tour Operators and their agents. On the other hand, food – fresh grilled fish or chicken – is also available in the island.


Olango Island Group dive sites. The western edge of this reef facing Hilutangan Channel opposite Mactan Island presents beautiful coral gardens and a dense fish population. The eastern side has better coral corners and more game fish. Because of strong currents, this divesite is recommended for experienced divers only.