MANILA, Philippines—It’s suddenly so hot outside; it makes me wanna rip my shirt off. We all want the same thing during these stiflingly hot times, so let’s cut to the chase.
Two words, Puerto Galera!
It’s just two to three hours south of Manila via bus ride and ferry; no need to book air travel tickets or extra baggage. It’s largely a Tagalog-speaking resort town, and there are plenty of picturesque places to discover… so why not?
Puerto Galera is the nearest, cheapest, and most underrated beach in Luzon. And I suggest you spend your summer there… Here’s why:
Puerto Galera has just concluded the Malasimbo Arts and Music Festival. If you attended this event, you probably have a renewed appreciation of Kesong Puti, and have added a few French or Nordic friends in Facebook. But that’s just the kickoff.
A huge string of events is currently taking place in White Beach. In its second year, “Party and Play Summerscape to Puerto Galera: The Heart of Asia,” offers you the perfect venue for a Summer Escape as you take a sabbatical from the city and embrace nature once again.
Jagermeister and Smart Communications will be there, as they partner with the Summerscape team to launch the Smart Live All Out Sunset Sessions and the Jager Stag Nights!
The former is a beachside program that will bring melodies to your afternoons by the beach as you lounge around in the sun while the sun sets. Also, if you’re a Smart subscriber, you get a pass to Smart’s Live All Out Lounge, which will give you an uninterrupted view of the happenings on stage.
Jagermeister is also going all out as they pull out a few things off their sleeves. Watch out for the Jager Stag Nights! A series of evening parties where you can enjoy the best EDM mixes from the best djs in town. Jagermeister has also committed to restructuring the image of Puerto Galera, literally! You won’t believe what they have in store for us. Think of a cube, blow it up, and put it on the beach. It’s going to be epic.
Of course, you have your usual beach flavors, such as kayaking, fly fishing, parasailing, and banana boat rides. If you’re lucky, you’ll stumble upon Fabian, a French immigrant who offers Jet Ski rides to tourists. No, he doesn’t speak Filipino just yet, but he sure can haggle with you to lower the price of a Jet Ski ride.
You can also play beach volleyball by renting out a ball from the many bars along the beach (prices range from Php150 to Php200, and you may play a game with the locals – be warned though, they are incredibly good in beach volley).
A multitude of restaurants dot the beach and you have all the choices of cuisines, from Italian to Persian, Chinese and Korean, and of course Filipino, which are predominantly grilled seafood.
We recommend the Italian pizzeria “Al Piatto” which is situated a little inward, behind White Beach Lodge towards the main artery road that leads to Muelle. In this cozy pizzeria you’ll get legit pans of pizza for the very affordable price of Php145, and a decent plate of pasta for 2 for the same price. They also serve draft beer, and the best-selling Al Piatto Lasagna! Try it!
Also, if you’re the adventurous climb-up-the-mountain type of person, you can take a tricycle up Mount Malasimbo, into the highland barangay of Ponderosa, and just be at the top of the world! You’ll be surprised at the activities you can do in Ponderosa, but we won’t go spoiling it all here. By the way, you can take an ATV vehicle up the mountain, because we’re hands-on that way.
Seems fun. Where do I start?
You can start by booking your boat tickets online. Thanks to the partnership forged by the Municipality of Puerto Galera with SM Tickets, it’s now tremendously easier for travellers to book a boat ticket to Balatero (the port in Puerto Galera). You may book your tickets online via this link www.smtickets.com.ph, because we hate being bothered by long queues in terminals.
It sure is going to be a fun-filled summer in the island paradise of Mindoro – come and party with us, let Puerto Galera be your Summerscape this year. Choose local, #ChoosePuertoGalera!