Dingalan, Aurora (PH) – You may or may not have heard of this place, but it’s becoming popular because it was featured in “Biyahe ni Drew”. Hailed as the “Batanes of the East”, we decided to check it out as an alternative, and hopefully to at least scratch our Batanes itch.
We haven’t been to Batanes so we really couldn’t compare. One thing though, the view is breathtaking! For guides and information, please read on. (We’ll be listing some of the destinations in Dingalan that we haven’t visited and will be updating this blog entry as soon as we go back.) Comments, questions, and more details about this place are more than welcome!)
PS: We were a group of 6, stayed overnight, and traveled around February, 2017. Feel free to download the infographics below 🙂
WHAT TO DO
TREK TO WHITE BEACH
You have two choices to reach White Beach: Trek along the shore for an average of 30 mins. (for locals) but took us an hour and 15 minutes – of course, to take pictures and yes, breaks since some of us aren’t used to moving. We blame our jobs. Ride a boat (max 10 people) for 800 per boat back and forth. It would take you 10-15 mins. only. *Since tourism is booming, the tourism office would offer you the boat option only. (You also have to pay P50 per pax for environmental fee. See expenses and itinerary above.) We were lucky enough to trek and experience more of Dingalan because I have a contact already. We will put their details below. (Hello Ate Leny, Yuan, and Richard if you’re reading this!)
HIKE TO DINGALAN VIEWDECK/VIEWPOINT
Look and admire the view and see why it’s called the “Batanes of the East.” Take lots of photos because, well, #feedgoals NOTE: To those who don’t like hiking or trekking, we recommend you to try it out now – the view is rewarding. It took us 30-40 mins. up and at least 20 mins. down. It can also be muddy and slippery if it rained. Please wear proper footwear if you have one; if not, then please just be careful. It’s a little steep but manageable.
HIKE TO DINGALAN LIGHTHOUSE
The way up is steeper than View Deck's. Again, it will take you at least 30-40 mins up and 25 mins down. *Entering the lighthouse is prohibited.
Swim and Eat at White Beach
After all that walking and hiking, enjoy the refreshing water of white beach (but it's not really white) while waiting for the food. We had a delicious boodle fight lunch-merienda prepared by Ate Leny, owner of Sheldane Travel and Tours.
Trek , Swim, and Cliff Jumping at Tanawan Falls
Take a cold dip at Tanawan Falls and enjoy – as our guides say – unlimited cliff jumping. It’s at least 8-10 feet high so it’s just a regular jump for adrenaline junkies, and an easy start for those who want to try it out for the first time.
Matawe Tidelands and Twin Rock Formations
If you don’t mind walking on rocky areas and have at least thick footwear/sandals/slippers, then might as well visit this place during low tide. Ask your guide when or what time to go here. This is such an oddly picturesque place. There is an intertidal pool that appears during the summer only. We were here February so we didn’t see it. (Will be back though!)
WHERE TO STAY
*Photo from Shalom Guesthouse
You can actually go on a day tour, but for people who want to extend their visit and stay the night, check the links below:
- Shalom Guesthouse and Restobar – Just in front of feeder port and in town proper. (Owner is one of Dingalan’s councilors) We stayed here and the staff were very accommodating. They gave us an airconditioned room that could fit at least 15 pax (but we’re only 6) for 4,000/night. Bathrooms were small though.
- Fildane Inn – They also have their own tour. Check it out.
- Coastal Cove Resort
- Matawe Resort
- Juniban Resort
- Carpio’s Beach Resort
*We think all resorts are in Matawe and is 15-20 mins. away from town proper. You can get there by riding a tricycle.
WHERE TO EAT
There aren’t a lot of food establishments in the area, but we ate all our meals at Shalom Restobar and Guesthouse. Lunch was prepared for us by our tour guide on the first day.
If you know any food establishments around, please feel free to comment!