(From Asian Traveler)
Legend has it that there was once a group of fishermen who were out on the calm waters of the Sulu Sea, in the southern part of the Philippine archipelago, when they spotted an island with white, powder-fine sand and a lush growth of coconut trees.
They anchored ashore and explored the island’s diverse flora and fauna, went home bearing coconuts and other forest finds, and then came back soon after that. Not long after, this same group of fishermen—and more—would make regular trips to this new island discovery, and the island was soon known as Pamalican Island. Its name was derived from the Filipino word “balikan”, which either means “to return to” or “back and forth”, depending on context and where the accent was placed.
It isn’t known exactly when this island retreat was first discovered by the fishermen, but it was brought to the public consciousness by Andres Soriano, a Spanish-Filipino industrialist who supposedly rediscovered Pamalican while on a yachting trip, fell in love with the island, and decided to purchase it from that family that then owned the island’s coconut plantation. Soon after that, the Soriano family decided to develop the property and establish their presence in Pamalican, and in neighboring islands through the Andres Soriano Foundation. Read more