Talipanan Beach (Puerto Galera, Oriental Mindoro, PH)

Every time I stand before a beautiful beach, its waves seem to whisper to me: If you choose the simple things and find joy in nature’s simple treasures, life and living need not be so hard. – Psyche Roxas-Mendoza

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Are you yearning for a nippy beach getaway this summer? If you are living or working in the metro, the most common and nearest escape is usually White Beach of Puerto Galera. But, what if you don’t fancy large, noisy crowd and night life? And you just want a quiet, relaxing place where you can have a much needed dose of your vitamin SEA.

Well, there is this not so familiar piece of beach in Puerto Galera that is quite different from the usual Galera vibe called Talipanan Beach. It is the opposite of White Beach and Sabang Beach since it is hushed, fewer resorts, visitors and vendors. A much cleaner beach area (though a smaller stretch) with pebbled sand, Talipanan is a better place to loosen up a weary body and mind.

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Talipanan Beach is also the home of the famous Luca Italian Restaurant. Prior to coming to Talipanan, Ive read a lot of positive remarks about this restaurant’s food. They specialize on Italian cuisines. Their pizza is such a gastronomic feast. At first, I thought it was really pricey however, after having a taste, I was pretty sure it was all worth the price.

Luca Cucina Italiana & Lodge – 09164175125; http://www.lucaphilippines.com

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How To Get to Talipanan Beach:

Ride an air-conditioned bus going to Batangas Port. Bus terminals bound for Batangas Port can be found along Buendia, Cubao and Kamuning. Travel time is less than 2 hours sans the traffic.

Once in Batangas Port, proceed to Terminal 3 and find the ticket booth of the boat of your choice. There are 3 boats going to Puerto Galera:

  • Galerian Shipping Lines. They have a direct stopover to Talipanan Beach but they first drop passengers in White Beach, followed by Tamaraw beach, and its last stop is the Talipanan Beach. Travel duration is 1.5 – 2 hours since it is not a straight trip.
  • Minolo Shipping Lines. Ride the boat bound to Muelle. From there, they provide their passengers free shuttle ride going to Talipanan Beach. Travel duration is 45-60 minutes by boat and 20 minutes by van.
  • Father & Son Shipping Line. They are bound to White Beach. From there, ride a tricycle going to Talipanan Beach. Sometimes, the boat passes through Sabang first. Travel duration is 1.5 – 2 hours by boat and 45 – 60 minutes by tricycle.
With people I met in Talipanan.
With people I met in Talipanan.

Where To Stay in Talipanan:

Amami Beach Resort: 09082068534

Bamboo House: 0917-5620992

El Canonero Beach Resort: 0906-4878397

Luca’s Cucina Italiana & Lodge: 09164175125

Mengie’s  White Sand Beach Resort: 0920-4032173

Mountain Beach Resort: 0917-5620842

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Beauty of Bulalacao (Oriental Mindoro, PH)

“It’s a good idea always to do something relaxing prior to making an important decision in your life.” ― Paulo Coelho, The Pilgrimage

_CSC_1349Whenever a person tells me that they consider themselves beach lovers, I would often ask their idea of a perfect beach. Some says the beach should have an unobstructed view of the sea. Others would say it should have clean shoreline and crystal clear water. Most of those that I know would just say – it has to be relaxing.And I just have to agree with all their reasons. The perfect beach getaway is one that I can hear the sea breeze humming to my ears, the waves rolling on the shore, with my bare feet sensing the sand beneath its sole, no screaming children, no sea of tourists and big umbrellas blocking the ocean view, and perhaps a good book to keep me company while I await the sun to set.Isn’t this too ambitious to ask for? Well, no. Especially that the Philippines is a country blessed with a seemingly endless coastline – serene and beach worthy. So, if you’re looking to enjoy complete solitude on a dazzling beach, you’ll definitely want to check the untouched islands of Bulalacao in Oriental Mindoro.DSC_1666Bulalacao, a coastal town in southern Oriental Mindoro is virtually an untouched and a must-visit eco-tourism spot. It is said to be the home of the Hanunuo (a tribe of stone age primitive Mangyans). Bulalacao maybe that sanctuary you are looking for to escape the stressful city life.

Trivia: The town, whose name according to myth was derived from a bird of death known to locals as “bulalacao”. Sounds creepy but the attractions the place offers is the opposite since it is teeming with beautiful natural spots.DSC_1729According to their tourism office, Bulalacao has thirteen outlying islands dotted with a handful of beaches to count in a day, each beach has its own charm. The whitest sand beaches around Bulalacao are on Buyayao Island, Tambaron Island, Target Island and Aslom Island.  I was fortunate to have visited both Tambaron and Aslom Islands.

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Aslom Beach is an ideal tropical getaway. The island’s name came from the Cebuano word “aslom”, meaning sour, because of the abundance of sampaloc trees bearing the sour fruit.  The unblemished splendour of the island is ideal for beach bumming and exploring the marine world. The island has a crescent-shaped sandbar that stretches about 500 meters. The water is crystal clear and some lovely trees add charm to the place. There are no other establishments or restaurants on the island. While the island is private, travellers can stay for free during the daytime, however staying overnight is not allowed.

TAMBARON ISLANDDSC_1773 DSC_1761Tambaron Island is a rocky-mountainous island. It is pretty close to mainland Bulalacao and is just about 30-45 minutes from Bulalacao Bay depending on sea conditions. The island offers white sandy beaches, colourful marine life, pastoral trails and a quiet environ. Unlike Aslom, one can stay overnight in this island since it is usually the ideal jump off point for island hopping in Bulalacao.

How To Reach Bulalacao:

These are the possible options you may take if you want to visit Bulalacao.

  1. From Manila, book a ticket and plane your way to the domestic airport of San Jose, Occidental Mindoro. From San Jose ride a bus bound for Bulalacao.
  2. Another way is to ride a RORO Bus from Cubao. These buses go directly to Bulalacao via Batangas Port. The fare range isPhp700-800 (this includes the boat ride from Batangas Port to Calapan Port in Mindoro. Travel time takes 8-10hrs). Once in Calapan, ride a van or a bus bound for Bulalacao.
  3. Lastly, you may take a bus going to Batangas Pier/Port from Alabang Terminal. Then ride a ferry boat (like Supercat) from Batangas, or a RoRo ship that will take you to Calapan Port. From Calapan Port, you’ll see vans going directly to Bulalacao.DSC_1744Once in Bulalacao, proceed to Bulalacao Bay and hire motor boats that can be rented from P600 to P 1,500 per day depending on the number of islands you would want to set foot on and your haggling skills.

Where To Stay in Bulalacao:
There are no “hotels” in Bulalacao but there are inns and houses where spare rooms have been converted to cater for a the increasing number of visitors.DSC_1763South Drive Inn & Grill –  0928 503-3327

San Rosa Inn – 0918 385-1433

Felipa Lodge – 0928 705-7035

Tambaron Island Green Beach Resort – 0920 339-2595

Thelma’s Paradise – 0907 440-1299

You may also contact the tourism office:
Oriental Mindoro Tourism Office | Tel (+63) 43 286-7046 | Fax (+63) 43 441-0306 |

E-mail : ormindorotourism@yahoo.com | www.ormindoro.gov.ph