We first set foot on this white sand beach at the end of our island-hopping tour, on our second day in Romblon. We had spent an inordinate amount of time at our third island destination leaving us only several minutes to explore beautiful Bonbon Beach before we had to return to Romblon town. Our boat hurriedly docked in the middle of Bonbon’s long, curving sandbar and we lost no time in exploring the beach, by now beginning to get awash in the golden rays of a sun lazily dropping down into the distant horizon. Continue reading A Beach Named Bonbon
We hadn’t planned going to this beach this early, having just arrived at Romblon town at 6 AM. Our initial plan was to catch up on sleep in the morning, then head for Talipasak Beach in the afternoon. We would then visit three other beaches including Tiamban Beach, on the following day. But a sudden brownout before 9AM changed our plans. It was unbearably hot in the hotel and with the multitude of beaches nearby we’d be fools not to cool off at these, so off to Talipasak we went.
In our past two visits to this coastal town our primary destination has always been the same: Patar Beach. Blessed with white sand and crystal-clear waters, Patar Beach we thought was worth the long 6-hour plus drive from Metro Manila. So when Leo drove his mom, sisters and a nephew to Bolinao in Pangasinan province recently, his first impulse was to bring them to this white beach wonder. Not having been to this beach since 2011, however, he was in for what was almost a rude awakening.
It used to be a laidback, sleepy town in a province better known for cattle-raising and sometimes referred to as the “Rodeo Capital of the Philippines.” But once word spread around about a group of six islets with pristine white-sand beaches and stunning rock formations lying just offshore, San Pascual in Burias Island, Masbate soon burst into the tourism scene. Although we’ve first read about this town and its island gems 5 years ago it was only last March that we finally got to organize a visit along with a friend and our nephew.
In the Philippines, Holy Week – that long weekend from Maundy Thursday to Easter Sunday – is a time when people flock to the beach or go to the highlands to cool off. We used to do that for some time until it became a hassle to find flights, bus trips, ferry trips or resorts at a time when everyone else was trying to do the same thing. Or to go to a beach where there was hardly any breathing room.
In the middle of a trip that requires a total of 7 vehicular transfers – a taxi ride starting from home, an 8-hour bus ride, a 2-hour ferry ride, 2 van rides and 2 transfers by trike – you come to a point when you begin to question the sheer absurdity of going through a self-flagellating travel schedule just to cross out an item in your bucket list. And it didn’t end there. The following day after our arrival in sleepy San Pascual town in Burias Island, Masbate we had to negotiate a not-so-calm sea on our way to the islands of Animasola, Tinalisayan and Sombrero. In a boat just big enough for the five of us. These islands had better be good or else.
The sleepy town of Mauban, Quezon has become popular in recent years due to Cagbalete Island. Unknown to many, however, the inland section of the town is home to caves, forests and – according to the locals – more than twenty waterfalls. Most of the waterfalls have not yet been documented. But at least three are well-known by now and readily accessible. Just recently we decided to visit the most popular and accessible cascade of the three: Dahoyhoy Falls.