La Union isn’t just for surfers. Case in point: Darigayos Cove.
Everyone knows that La Union is to the North what Siargao is to the South. It has surf spots for days, with locals that would drop everything once the swells are up.
What most people don’t know is that La Union offers so much more than surf spots. A perfect example of this is Darigayos Cove, a scenic, 800-meter beach in the small town of Luna. Known mostly for its pebble beaches, the town of Luna is best known for the Baluarte Watchtower, a Spanish-era fort that sits in the middle of the town, and this diamond amongst its pebbly beaches.
The beach has fine to coarse white sand and is a great place for sunsets. Most of the resorts in Luna are located here, so expect a small crowd midday. It becomes a surf spot during the months of September to November, with waves higher than those in San Juan.
Things to do
Visit the USAFIP NL Military Shrine and Camp Spencer (free)
Snorkeling and Diving (guides needed, check with local resorts for the spots)
Stay While there are resorts in the area, it’s best to rent one of the cottages on the beach for the day, which can go for as much as Php500 (USD10) each.
Get there Take a Partas Bus bound for Vigan and get off at Bacnotan, La Union. You can then ride a jeep from Bacnotan to Luna and get off at Darigayos.
What was once a hangout of a child is now the most famous view deck in Palawan’s growing hotspot, frequented by tourists
Whenever you search for photos of San Vicente, Palawan, chances are you’ll find this photo:
It’s often mistaken for Long Beach, but it’s actually called Irawan Beach. The place where this quintessential San Vicente photo is taken from? It’s on top of a boulder that’s up a short hill… and it’s called Bato ni Ningning.
Named after a television show it was in, Bato ni Ningning is perched on top of a hill in Brgy. Alimanguan, the northernmost barangay of San Vicente.
Getting to Bato ni Ning is a 47-minute drive from the airport or a 22-kilometer drive through paved and dirt roads. It’s best to take a guide with you and rent a motorbike to get to the hotspot.
Once there, you will be rewarded with a panoramic view of Brgy. Alimanguan, with Irawan Beach right in the middle. Simply pay the Php20 entrance fee, stand atop the boulder, whip out your camera, and either take a selfie or replicate that photo of San Vicente you always see online.
Get there SkyJet Airlines (Flyskyjetair.com) flies direct from Manila to San Vicente four times weekly. Flights are to increase to six times weekly beginning October 27, 2019.
White sand beach, azure water, with an amazing floating bar make this hotspot your barkada’s next holiday destination.
If you’re looking for an island where you can find a pristine white sand beach with an exciting vibe, you should be booking a trip to Lakawon Island in Negros Occidental.
It’s roughly two hours by land and sea combined from Bacolod with a stunning white beach as its main centerpiece, is in tune with nature, and dotted by palm trees. The cabanas complete the island paradise look that makes it seem like the island was made for relaxation.
Enjoy a walk on the beach, swim in the clear waters, or try your hand at kitesurfing. If you’re feeling peckish, Sunset Bar offers local-inspired dishes whipped with the the day’s fresh catch.
Coordinate with Lakawon Island Resorts and Spa (Lakawon.com.ph/) for a van to take you from Bradco Port to Lakawon and back for Php4,500.00 roundtrip (six-14 pax). To get to the Bacolod Bradco Port, simply ride a ferry from Manila to Bacolod.
Entrance fee is at Php350 per person, with the umbrella hut starting at Php600. Overnight stays are from Php2,500 per night (good for four to six people) at the Tropical Bamboo House.
There’s more to Camiguin than its famous sandbar. Case in point: Mantigue Island.
When people hear Camiguin, the image that first pops out is usually that of White Island. The popular sandbar has always been one of its major tourist draws, but that doesn’t mean it’s the only one.
In fact, there’s this four-hectare island off the coast of Mahinog that gives you the same white sand beach experience coupled with more things to do: Mantigue Island.
Mantigue has a bit more cover than White Island—thanks to the small beach huts on the southern part of the island. There’s coverage in the form of mangroves along its shores as well as vegetation in the middle part of the island, where you can find a restaurant, which doubles as the island’s tourism office. The waters surrounding Mantigue has been declared a marine sanctuary, making it perfect for snorkeling or diving. There’s also a small fishing community on the northern part of the island.
How to get there
SkyJet Airlines offers direct flights to Camiguin five times weekly. We suggest renting a motorbike (Php500 or about USD10 per day) and driving to get to Brgy. San Roque in Mahinog, which should take around 30 minutes. In San Roque, board a motorboat (Php600/boat, maximum of six people) to the island, where you can stay for four hours maximum. If you stay longer will set you back Php75 per hour per boat.
Things to do
There are a couple of things you can do in Mantigue Island, even if you’re only limited to for-hour stays.
Stand-up paddle board
Glass boat rides
Beach bumming for the Gram
Talk to the island locals, and (maybe) buy fish from them (fresh or sundried)
If you think you’ve seen the whitest of sands a Philippine beach has to ofer, wait until you set foot on Medan Island, more popularly known as White Island in Camiguin.
White Island, a 10-minute motorbike ride from the northern coast of the island province, is postcard perfect— with blindingly white sand that strikes a stark contrast against crystal clear waters that reflect the blueness of the skies. It will be hard not to be taken aback by Mt. Hibok-Hibok’s commanding presence in its backdrop.
But the main charm of White Island is its changing shape, which depends on the tide. So sometimes you see a serpentine shape, other times, the crescent of a usual beach, and who knows what else at another time.
Magical, isn’t it?
SkyJet Airlines launches its direct Manila to Camiguin flights on May 6, 2019. Tickets are now on sale. Flights are on daily except Tuesdays and Wednesdays.