To kick off Philippines' Summer 2016, we headed to Magalawa Island in Palauig, Zambales. Travel time from Manila is more or less 5 hours, depending on your stop overs if you go there by a private car. Boat ride to Magalawa was quick. I think it was between 10-15 minutes.
I did my research before going to the island. And yes, I have read about the feud between the two resorts in the island, Armada and Ruiz. The person in charge for reservation first inquired at Armada but they were fully booked already. Since I did my research, I knew that I shouldn't expect much. I was looking forward to it, but definitely, I had my expectations set!
So, we arrived at Ruiz, the staff are really nice. People are really helpful and kind. As for the shoreline at resort, I was not disappointed because, like what I have said, I knew what we're going to see. It would have been really better if there were no seaweeds. The water is really clear but the seaweeds are really annoying!
|My view from the tent!|
I enjoyed staying in the tent. I mean, how could I complain with this view, right??? Well, I actually complained because it was very difficult to sleep. It was hot and it was not really comfortable to sleep on the sand! LOL. Buuuuuut, waking up to this view made up for it.
We paid P50.00 so we could go to Armada's side. The famous sandbar is on that side of the island and it would be a total waste of the trip if we don't go there.
|Here's a panoramic shot of the sandbar|
One of the reasons why the island is popular, aside from its white sand and clear water, is the starfish! They're basically everywhere! Of course, I wouldn't pass for a photo op!
If you are looking for an affordable summer getaway place, this place is actually a good choice. I had a number of question (and information) that I think might be worth sharing.
How to get there? If you are going there via private car, Waze will be the best option! If you're going to commute, just ride a bus going to Sta. Cruz Zambales. Ask to be dropped off at Pangolingan Palawig. From there you can rent tricycle going to either Ruiz or Armada.
How much is the accommodation? There is an entrance fee of P100.00, P1,500 for a fan room (1Double Bed + 1 extra mattress), P500.00 for a regular beach cottage. If you have your own tent, you just need to pay P200.00. They also offer tent rentals, P500.00 For Armada's rates and packages, you can visit their website here.
How's the mobile reception? Of course we all need to Instagram or visit or share it family and friends on Facebook. Don't worry, mobile reception is good! I used Smart for my mobile internet and it was surprisingly fast!
What about electric supply? If you will be renting the fan room, you will have access to electricity all day! I am not sure if you can pay extra to get your phones/gadgets charged at the resort's store.
What are the supplies/food available at the resort? They actually offer food there. You can order your meals or bring your own, of course. But of course, it will be more expensive! During the weekends / peak season, they run out of supply. If that happens, you can go to the barrio nearby. Just walk on the left side of Ruiz Resort and you'll see sari-sari stores there.
Can I go to Armada's side without paying extra? If you will be able to, good for you! Well, actually, you can. You will be able to swim at that side of the island for free. Instead of walking on the shore, you will have to walk or swim in the sea. :D If you leave the sea and stepped on their shoreline, someone will approach you. Their staff are pretty good in watching over the line between Ruiz and Armada.