My friend Rose just celebrated her birthday in Pangasinan last week. Luckily, Carlo and Marlou’s family lives in Bani, Pangasinan. It’s a small town between Alaminos and Bolinao. So yehey!! It’s just a short drive going to the Hundred Islands, Patar Beach and the Enchanted cave.
We arrived Nov 1, had breakfast in Carlo’s lola’s house. We had shrimps and danggit! It was indeed a special breakfast to welcome us. Mama Ced, Carlo’s grandma, told me the shrimps were small and there weren’t many seafood in the market since it was rainy season. It was okay, we were just hoping that it wouldn’t rain when we go island hopping.
During our first day, we didn’t waste any time at all. We just rested for a bit, then drove all the way to Bolinao. Our first stop was the Lighthouse. It wasn’t peak season so it was just us visiting the place. We were actually scaring each other since the environment was a bit eerie. We just took pictures and went straight to Patar beach.
Along Patar beach are a lot of inexpensive resorts. But if you have the money, it’s really very nice to stay in Puerto del Sol. Since we already have a place to stay in Bani, we just went to the open beach. It’s part of the Patar beach that is open to the public. We only had to pay P30.00 for parking. Beach huts were also there for rent, but since we weren’t planning to go swimming there, again, we just took pictures. 🙂
After our photo op in Patar, we drove to the Enchanted cave. the entrance costs P90.00 per person, if you decide to swim inside the cave, you just have to add P30.00 per person. A guide will accompany you to a super short trek going inside the cave, the cave was already developed that’s why you’ll see stairs and lights already installed inside. The water was so clear. And cold!!! But wow! It was so refreshing! There are ropes on the sides of the cave so you can hold on to those, but for those of you who are good swimmers, you can go to the middle part of the cave where the water is 8ft deep. The cave stretches to 25 meters. I actually wanted to go to the end of the cave but it was too dark and Carlo was scared. Hehe. 🙂 SO nevermind! We stayed there for about an hour and a half and went back home at about 5 in the afternoon. We got to Bani after 45 minutes. Dinner was waiting!!! SO hungry!
After dinner, we just had a few drinks, and lucky for us, there was a fair and a Halloween party just right beside the house! So we decided to walk around and look for things to do. After feeling sooo tired, we went back home and slept.
Carlo woke me up at 9am, telling me we had to prepare for our drive to Alaminos. I was still super sleepy but also didn’t want any time to pass without doing anything. SO we drove to Alaminos. It took us only 30 mins to get there.
When we got to the pier, people asked us if we were going on an Island hopping. You’d have to register before renting a boat. There were 5 of us and we were thinking of getting a day tour that costs P800.00 (small boat: good for 3-5 people) or the small service boat that costs P1,400.00. The difference is that the P800 pesos day tour will only take you to 3 major islands. so we opted for the service boat.
Before getting into the boat, we bought food for lunch. Carlo and I spent about 300 pesos – 3 viands and 4 cups of rice.
Our boatman, Kuya Efren served as our tour guide. And since Carlo and Marlou speaks fluent Ilocano, it was super easy communicating with Kuya Efren. He also speaks Tagalog by the way, but you know how comfortable one gets when another speaks their dialect. 🙂
We went to 6 different islands. Our favorites include the Lopez and Clave Islands. Believe it or not, the sand was comparable to Boracay station 1.
Our first stop was the Governor’s island. We climbed up 120 steps just to get to the view deck. Tiring but worth it!
We ate lunch at Lopez island where I spent most of my time sun bathing, didn’t really work! 😦 Rose, Carlo, Marlou and Elaine went snorkeling. Rose had so much fun chasing fishes! It was actually her first time to snorkel. Carlo taught her how to swim. Hehe.
We went to Romulo island, where I built a sand castle. We spent most of our time just watching people there and doodling on the sand.
We ended our day taking pictures and chilling on Clave Island. We called this island Narnia. It was because a there was a statue of a Lion at the edge of the cliff. Kinda reminded us of Aslan. (I’ll look for the pic, can’t seem to find it) 🙂
All tours must end at 5:30 PM, and it was already 4:00 PM so we decided to go back. Plus it was already raining a bit and the waves were getting stronger.
When we got home, we were sooo tired to do anything so we just slept after dinner. Yes, it was our last day and all of us actually wanted to make the most out of it. But then we thought, hey! we already have!!!