Earlier this year I wrote a blogpost in my personal website about safety in Balabac, and I entitled in “Is Balabac Safe?” to give the best explanation I could give to people asking the question. I feel like it is the time to update this article through this page since many things have changed since I published it. I shared some information there so read it before you continue this! 🙂
Is Balabac still safe? I encounter more and more people ask this questioin since they saw news about children being eaten by crocodiles, as well as dengue outbreak was announced in the Philippines. The answer to your Balabac safety concerns lies with this question: WHERE IN BALABAC ARE YOU GOING?
Balabac has 32 islands! Click here to see more about its location! The biggest one is mainland Balabac where the main town is. This is where ALL the crocodile incidents are sited. So go look at google maps and see which destinations are around mainland: Melville Lighthouse and Timbayan Rock formation (a crocodile was spotted here according to one of the boatman locals). This is the very reason why we don’t bring our guests to mainland!
Meanwhile, other destinations have no recorded instance of crocodile attacks. We have brought hundreds of people and to be honest, even the most adventurous ones who wanted to see a crocodile saw NONE.
There has been an outbreak of Dengue Fever in the Philippines, meaning there is an increase in cases of people who gets affected by the virus. It is logical to be afraid. But if you will search for yourself Dengue mosquitoes (aedes aegypti mosquito) prefers to feed off of humans and thrives more around human settlements (towns and cities) than in unpopulated islands. They can only be carrying the virus if they bit a human with dengue already. Where do you think the risk is? Again, mainland Balabac.
For sure there is mosquito in other islands, but we have not have cases of dengue fever in the destinations where we are visiting! Just bring an insect repellent agains itchy bites from mosquitoes and sand flies!
If you have dengue fever, please do not travel to Balabac and spread your virus!
It was only in the past that Malaria was a problem in Balabac but only in the mainland, where the mountainous area is.
I’m tired of explaining about what’s not really there. Haha. Read about my explanation about Balabac’s location and its consequences from the original article.
So, you know how to answer the question.
If you are going to the mainland Balabac, there is higher risk. But if you are just visiting the undeveloped islands like Onok, Punta Sebaring and Candaraman and the sandbars, then you can ease your mind from the worry.
If you need previous visitors to testify to this, you may head to this TripAdvisor reviews.