Business tourism in Tenusa Island in Basilan


THE PLACE may be beautiful but it will take a while for tourists and Filipinos to get over the fear of reports on the safety and security of the place. Photo by Ayunan G. Gunting, Contributor

The Philippines, due to its archipelagic nature, is full of  scenic beaches.

On top of the popular and world-renowned beaches in the country, there are still plenty undiscovered.

“We are developing Tenusa Island in Basilan,” Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao Governor Mujiv Hataman proudly says.

“For travelers looking for beaches that are world-class in terms of crystal sea waters  but are not yet crowded with tourists, the stunning beaches of Basilan are definitely the place to go to,” Hataman adds.

Basilan is the largest and northernmost of the major islands of the Sulu Archipelago and is located just off the southern coast of the Zamboanga Peninsula. The island is a 30-minute boat ride from Zamboanga City.

Photo by Ayunan G. Gunting, Contributor

The image of Basilan is that of a war-torn place where kidnapping flourishes. Peace and order needs wanting.

What most people don’t actually know is that Basilan is a paradise waiting to be revealed for the rest of the world to see and experience, according to its officials.

Basilan boasts of beautiful and unspoiled beaches that both local and foreign travelers should put on the top of their must-go to places this summer.

Among the must-see breathtaking beaches in Basilan is the one located in the small island of Tenusa—a virgin island with white powdery sand and coconut trees.

It is five minutes away from Sumisip Muncipality, the hometown of Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao head Mujiv Hataman.

“We want to develop Tenusa. It’s a world class island. We can assist and arrange a tour here, for them to know that Basilan offers stunning beaches and profound culture,” Congresswoman Sitti Djaliah T. Hataman says.

And then there are also the White Beach of Malamawi Island and the Hami Beach of Baluno to explore.

The White Beach of Malamawi Island offers pristine sand with a sea that is so enticing tourists will surely find it irresistible to submerge to its calm water.

The Hami Beach, meanwhile, is an awesome picturesque beach that is definitely worth visiting.

All of Basilan’s beaches boast of a genuinely serene and rustic environment that tourists want to live in.

The local government of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) led by Governor Mujiv Hataman and his wife, Anak-Mindanao partylist Congresswoman Sitti Djaliah, are now working to further develop the tourist spots in their hometown.

Cottages made of nipa hut are being constructed. The beach is perfect for snorkeling and jet skiing.

Asked how safe is the island? “We will start by a guided-guarded tour for tourists and visitors. Para sure na safe. It’s not an overnight success na masolve mo the peace and order [problem]. Everywhere, kidnapping is inevitable,” Hataman adds.

Major marketing strategy is to start from family, relatives and friends. Word of mouth advertisement. Those who would like to explore must contact the Local Government Units or us, for their safety, the couple says.

And for them, Basilan’s beaches are definitely among the best tourist destinations that Mindanao can offer.

“We are happy that tourism is alive especially in summer. Fear not Basilan,”   Hataman says.

Given all the negative news surrounding Mindanao, it might come as a surprise to know that a visit to Basilan could actually be a fun, memorable and peaceful experience that will allow travelers to recharge and be rejuvenated.

So, if you are looking for something new, idyllic , virgin crystal sea waters, come and explore Basilan.

How to go there?

By air: Manila-Zamboanga- one hour and 20 minutes

By sea: Zamboanga-Isabella City-30 minutes

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • Yanong_OFW

    baka maapply nyo yung proposal ni Dick Gordon noon nga gawing mga security guards ang mga Abus Sayaff para daw hindi na sila mangidnap..OK ba Gov.?

  • Mr_FootyHooligan

    Governor Hataman, I like your enterprising attitude. But first things first. I spent some of my formative years in Basilan when my father was assigned in that area back in the 80’s. Back then you don’t have the Abus’ and the hundreds of kidnapping groups nurtured by the local political clans around. This time around, I bet you 1000%, ang unang foreigner o local tourist na tumapak dyan sa lugar na iyan, sigurado ko maamoy at mag-lalaway na agad ang mga rebelde/kriminal na nakapalibot sa lugar na iyan. So, hanggat hindi mo mawalis at mapatay lahat ng rebelde/kriminal, Abus’ at kidnap for reansom groups dyan, that tourism thing you talk about is for naught.

  • Ako_si_Bong_Tatay_ni_Borgy


  • Kong An Lan

    Gusto ko din maexplore Basilan. Lintek lang Abu Sayyaf na yan.

  • jose_rizal11

    Give peace a chance to mindanao!!! d pba kayo sawa sa kahirapan!!! ako kahit dito ko lng nababasa sa net ang kaguluhan diyan sa mindanao nakakapagod na kayo pa kaya!!!

  • jose_rizal11

    sayang talaga tourism diyan sa mindanao kong wala lang sana mga kidnapping and mga gyera na yan mas mayaman pa sana ang mindanao sa luzon! kaya mag cooperate na kayo mga moslems fighters para din naman yan sa kinabukasan ng mga anak nu!!!

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos