5.26.2012

Mindoro: Puerto Galera

Waving hello to the most searched PH destination -Puerto Galera.



I joined my ACN-SAP friends(my very first official travel buddies) for a Puerto Galera weekend get-away last week. I've been so much stressed doing a lot of OT works lately that's why I felt like I badly needed this so-called break. I don't have so much idea about Puerto Galera aside from the fact that this is one of the most visited summer destinations in the country. I left that fact alone since I don't have time to do advance research and I was so busy with my job. hihi.

The place is actually 3-hour drive away from Manila which make it more famous and a good option for busy people living in the city. We reached this by boarding a bus (from Buendia to Batangas Port) and a small ship (from Batangas to White beach, Puerto Galera).

While we were approaching the shore, I can't help myself but felt the excitement. The white beach, as well as the little islands nearby, are really beautiful and inviting.

Upon arrival , we were welcomed by a lady who's holding a banner with my friend's name written on it. I assumed that she's the one who will assist us for our lodging and activities included in the package we availed.

The lady accompanied us to Buena Lynne's so called superior room. And guess what, that room made me so much disappointed. I even told that lady that we 're not really happy on what she's offering. We argued for a few minutes and we kept on insisting that the room she's giving to us is not what we saw on the package we availed. I'll make separate post for that lodging who almost ruined my first Puerto Galera experience. Anyway, we went there to enjoy the island not the room. ;)

To change the bad vibes we had during our start, we decided to visit the Tamaraw Falls.
It's actually a 1-hour drive away from the white beach and in order to get there, you need to hire a tricycle or multi-cab for your group which costs 1200 pesos. Funny how expensive the Puerto Galera is. Everything is uber commercialized. There is entrance fee if you want to swim and play on that falls which costs 30 pesos/pax. The falls looks great at first sight and maybe a good subject for photography but I don't think it's really worth a 1200+ pesos. Sorry, but honestly, for me, nothing is extraordinary about this falls. There are so many beautiful falls in the Philippines.

We spent the half of our DAY 1 at the falls since we're avoiding the sunburn as much as possible.
and on the afternoon, we went back to the white beach to have our late lunch and decided to try the Banana boat. I was actually scared everytime the motorboat do a sharp turn so that all the passengers will be thrown away. It was actually thrilling especially for me since I don't know how to swim. ehe. I enjoyed that much and I definitely try that again.



Our DAY 2 is dedicated for island hopping and snorkeling. it's also fun especially when a school of fish are also swimming with you.






What I love about this place:
1. The white beach is beautiful. It's an alternative for boracay. Just an alternative because it's one of the nearest here in Manila! haha. For me, nothing beats bora!

2. The islands around the white beach are calm and very relaxing.

What I hate:
1. Over commercialized.
2. I hate how the establishments stood along the white beach. Not organized.


What I have learned about this short getaway:
1. Be careful in choosing package deals. Sometimes it's better not to get one.


Why memorable:
-First Bananaboat and Snorkeling Experience. Happiness!

Expenses:
Package (12,000 pesos/6pax: ) : 2000 pesos each
inclusion: 
2-way boat transfer (Batangas-Mindoro-Batangas)
2D/1N Accommodation
snorkeling
Bus Fare (Manila-Bantangas-Manila)
 :  330 pesos
Visit Tamaraw Falls:
Fare: (1200 pesos /6pax) : 200 pesos each
Entrance Fee: 30 pesos each
Bananaboat
:   250 pesos
Food for 2 days
:   600 pesos
Pasalubong
: 1000 pesos
Total:4412 pesos