Saturday, February 25, 2012

Bolinao, Pangasinan

After visiting Manaoag church for a short period of time, we headed to Bolinao bloggers were boasting about. There was no direct bus route to Bolinao so we had to take a van going to Dagupan. Below travel time includes the waiting time, and rates are per head. Once you reach Alaminos go left towards CSI Mall, you will pass the Colegio De San Jose De Alaminos to catch a mini bus going to Bolinao, drop off at Victory Liner or Five star bus terminal.

Day 1 - Ilog-Malino
11:45 am - 12:45 am  Manaoag to Dagupan Terminal           Php 30.00
12:45 am - 2:30 pm  Dagupan Terminal to Alaminos                  65.00
 2:50 pm - 4:00 pm Alaminos to Bolinao                                  45.00
 4:00 pm - 4:30 pm D' Heredero Resort (Biboy Odero) 10 kms from town proper

Going to the resort would probably costs 75.00 one way but we didn't pay because it was included in the package. We didn't check out other resorts because it was already late and besides the room was nice and affordable which is good for 6 to 10 persons. The rates below is for off-peak season. You may want to contact Biboy at 0920-452-6157/ 0921-448-5057 for the updated price. It has only 4 rooms as this was a just a 2-year old resort and there was no amenities. It is good for someone who would just like to rest and enjoy the quite moment as you could only hear the breakwater. 

Php 1,500.00   Room with or without A/C, no charge for extra bed (private bathroom), room is good for 6 to 8 persons
         200.00 - Picnic Hut which is free for room occupants
Transport service (tricycle)
         800.00 - Tour - Bolinao Falls
         600.00 - Tour - Patar Beach, Wonderful Cave, Lighthouse



Room is good for 6-8 persons

Place for you to cook your foods
lavatory faucet was not working, you can use a dipper
flush was working

shower has low pressure so you may wanna use the pale & the dipper.

The resort could be perfect for a person looking for a serene place and it would also be nice if they have hammocks. The air was just so right that you could easily relax and fall asleep.


I fell asleep in this nipa hut after we had our lunch, the breeze of air was very fresh and free from pollution

Break-water was far because it was low tide at that time. The place was not crowded, well actually we were the only customers they had =).

sand was not as fine and white as boracay but it doesn't matter

my feet were sink in the clear water of Ilog-Malino =)

Our dinner costs Php 737.00 - It has 1 pc medium-sized Tilapia,  1 pc medium-sized  Bangus, 1 pc medium-sized squid (seafoods cost roughly Php 400-500), small serving of vegetables, Rice. Just inform the guard that you are going to dine in Puerto Del Sol, after your dinner get a stub from the restaurant which you will present to the guard on your exit. The food we ordered was okay.  Restaurants are just too far though you can find some "carinderia" which the locals were serving but they closed as early as 5 pm, so  before you go anywhere better buy your stuffs in the town proper.  Even if you stayed in other resorts you won't find any fast foods other than their own restaurant.

Day 2 - Bolinao Falls, Samang Norte

8:30 am - 9:15 am Town Proper 

 The next day, were brought Adoras Restaurant in the town proper for our breakfast. They served goat's meat as their specialty but we didn't order that. We had pork barbecue that costs Php45/stick with a cup of rice that costs Php 10.00 for a total of P55 with free soup and water. The food was just fine but if there were other affordable restaurants that serve good meals we might prefer that.

It was a little bumpy ride going to Bolinao Falls, half of the road was still under construction. Biboy had a rough time driving the tricycle, we saw him massaging his thigh from time to time.

9:15 am to 10:00 am Samang Norte
Bolina has 2 private-owned falls named as Bolinao Falls 1, 2 which are 20 km. away from town proper. Falls 1 was closed already due to non-maintenance of the owner. Falls 2 is open to public which charges the following fee for its maintenance:

Php 10.00 - Motorcycle
       15.00 - Tricycle
       20.00  - Car
       35.00  - Bus

Cottage: Php300.00

The guy in the back with orange short and holding a gatorade is Biboy

We were also informed that there's 3rd falls which was still unexplored unexplored and the residents were hoping that the gov't would succeed in buying that out  as it was private-owned property. These 3 falls are interconnected. 

We thought the falls was as big as in Sagada's but we were wrong because it was a mini-falls. The upper side is safe for kids while the lower part of the falls is for adults,

This lower side is approximately 4 to 5 feet deep, water is cold but a little green due to moss on the stones which you might slip on so one should be very careful. Should you decide to swim there's a cubicle which you can change your clothes but there is no shower area. There are also picnic hut which you can rent if you would like to stay longer and eat. The place closes at 5 pm.

We just stayed and rest for a few minutes then went back to Heredero to eat our lunch.

11:45 - 11:30 am - Back to Resort 

1:45 pm - 2:15 pm - Patar's Rock Formation
Entrance fee: Php 5.00 (this area is a private property)

The view from this area of Patar Beach was just magnificent. We didn't get the chance to swim on the water, we were forbidden by our driver cum tour guide as the waves were strong that might caught and drag us away from the shore. We were told that some big artists visited this place for photo shoot. We just followed their lead =) and we had fun.

Waves could reach as high as this rock during high tide

2:10 pm to 2:27 pm -  Bolinao Light house

It is the second tallest light house in the Philippines built in 1905 providing the panoramic view of the South China Sea. It has an over-all total 134 steps, but unfortunately it's keeper  was not around so we weren't able go to the top of it.  

Lighthouse is operated by the solar panel above hence the keeper visits the place once in a while. We roamed around and we found dilapidated building, they say that these were being occupied before but after a few years was abandoned. It's just so sad that these were not utilized, this could be a restored and make as a school, most of the schools I've seen are just too far from the residents area. 

There are concrete tables outside so one can have a picnic should you wish to stay a little longer. 

2:30 pm - 3:00 pm  Patar public beach

Patar Beach has no entrace fee as it is a public beach, if you decide you stay you can rent cottages or hut. Even though Treasures of Bolinao Resort was far from where I was, the Rock formation they were boasting about was, in my opinion, no better than what we've just seen in the other part of Patar. The beach was jammed-packed with people and that there were grasses on the water so we decided to just roam around besides we only had few minutes to stay because we still need to go to wonderful cave.

Bolinao Treasures Resort

2:10 pm to 3:30 Enchanted Cave

Enchanted Cave is 13 km away from the town proper. The cold water flowing in the cave is natural water coming from the sea. This is a perfect place for someone who doesn't like to have a tan skin. It is 5 to 6 feet deep and very clear, children can also swim if you'd bring lifebuoy with you. Food and drinks as well as soap and shampoos are not allowed. They have picnic area if you'd like to eat. Cave is open until 5:00 pm.

Php 50.00 - Entrance (add 20.00 if you'd like to swim)

2-wheel - Php10.00
3-wheel -      15.00
4-wheel -      25.00

4:30pm to 5:00pm Back to the Resort
5:00 - 6:00 Off to Five star terminal
7:00 - 1:00 am Back to Manila

There are other caves but we decided not to go there due to:
1) We're on a budget
2) Enchanted cave is the best among others based on some bloggers' review

Other interesting place to visit:                                 Distance from Bolinao Town proper

St. Claire Monastery -                                                                       8 km
Bolinao Museum
Tara Falls - (with 1-hr Hiking)                                                          17 km
Mangrove Nursery
St. James Church                                                                          Town proper
Balingasay River                                                                              6 km 

Other Resorts in Patar:
Solomon's Paradise Bar &Grill - 0905-398-1470/0928-474-8845
Remy's Beach Resort (18 km) - 0909-952-9577
Betty's Beach Resort (18 km) - 0930-337-8289
Costa del Fuego (18 km) - 0999-800-8296
Hondrada Open Cottages (18 km) - 0929-374-1489

Expenses for two:
Fares                    1,722.00
Accommodation    1,500.00
Tour                    1,400.00
Entrances                180.00
Lunch 2x                 468.00
Dinner 1x                737.00
Breakfast 2x            240.00
Total                   6,247.00