I never had any Puerto Galera memories when I was younger. Actually, I’ve never set foot on it ever. Until one occasion led me to look for a new place for a quick getaway. And then Talipanan Beach popped into my mind.
Tagging along my buddy, we headed to Batangas Port via JAM Liner in Kamuning, Quezon City (175 pesos each) for my very first Puerto Galera trip. I snoozed all throughout the 2-hour bus ride. It was a Friday.
Arriving at Batangas Port, we were told that all small boats heading to Puerto Galera were suspended due to bad weather (strong winds and occasional rains). I was saddened by this. I was about to suggest my “plan B” but then my buddy informed me that there’s another option to reach Puerto Galera.
And it’s a RORO ferry ride to Calapan, Mindoro. It was way bigger than the boats heading towards Puerto Galera. The downside though was that instead of a 2-hour boat ride, we were off for a 4-hour ride.
We pushed through with the RORO ferry trip and shelled out 222 pesos for it (192 pesos for the fare / 30 pesos for the terminal fee). We chose to stay on the open air part on the right side of the ferry for a nicer view. We ditched the airconditioned, comfy seats and huge TV screen for a view of the waves and the foggy landscape.
It was a fairly pleasant ride except for some occasional strong wave surge that felt like the ship would tumble any moment that my buddy almost (yes, almost) spewed while walking on the aisle. Tsk tsk tsk.
After 4 hours of amusement park-ish ferry ride, we safely arrived on Calapan in Mindoro. The next problem was how to reach the town of Puerto Galera. There were shuttle vans offering a ride for 3,500 pesos for the whole van (which is open for sharing with other passengers). We tried to haggle with one of the drivers but we were defeated.
And then I saw a jeepney and looked out for the driver. It seemed like the driver was waiting for a congregation of some sort. And I was right. He was waiting for some Korean tourists and they were heading to the White Beach in Puerto Galera. This sparked some hope for us.
Upon exchanging a few words with the driver, he agreed on tagging us alongside the tourists for a minimal fee (he didn’t give an exact amount for the ride though so it was more of a tip rather than a fare). The best part of the jeepney ride? We were seated right next to the driver giving us the best view of the countryside.
|best seat is the front seat|
It was already getting dark when we arrived in Puerto Galera. We were really starving that time and gobbled on some hot lomi and mami on one of the eateries in the town. We also did some grocery errands for some life-saving essentials like loads of coffee. And then we needed to go to our chosen resort for the weekend getaway. We hired a tricycle for 50 pesos (25 pesos each) from the downtown to the Talipanan Beach where we planned to stay for the rainy weekend.
We trekked along a muddy hill just to reach the El Cañonero Diving Beach Resort (check rates). We were dead tired but we didn’t fail to notice how nice the resort and the beach were. The pool was so inviting and there’s this tropical feel in the place. There were some guests and we were the only Filipinos. The laidback vibe of the resort was just lovely.
|very nice pool|
|no loud music, no music at all|
We were greeted by the very gracious Italian owner Giorgio. It felt like we’ve known each other for quite some time after a few exchange of emails. We were planning for a dive the next day but were discouraged due to the inclement weather. And so Giorgio personally led us to our room. We were expecting to stay on their basic double room but then he headed towards the family room. It’s located on the second level and had a great view of the beach. We also have our own staircase leading to our private room. Just great!
|the view from our balcony|
The room was pretty huge for the both of us. There’s this huge bed and another double deck bed. There’s also a TV, mini ref, aircon and an en suite bathroom. The best part though was the balcony overlooking the beach. Perfect for those emo moments. But then we used it as our breakfast nook and our refuge for those beer glugging nights.
We never saw a ray of sunlight during our 3-day stay in El Cañonero. We were stuck in the resort and all we could do was… nothing but relish our zilch moments. We had some afternoon siesta on the shore (sans the sun), took a dip on the beach and the pool (which was fun for it was really deep due to the intro diving being done there), abused the free wi-fi connection and tried the resort’s in-house restaurant – the Octopus.
|very bad weather|
We feasted on some of the favorites on the menu. We tried their famous pizza and asked if they could probably serve two different flavors on just one pizza and they agreed. We had 1/2 Rustica and 1/2 Four Cheese Pizza (365 pesos) and Fried Chicken Wings (180 pesos). Everything was nice and tasty. The serving was huge for the two of us but we finished everything burping all throughout the night.
|1/2 Rustica and 1/2 Four Cheese|
|Fried Chicken Wings|
Talipanan Beach is nice. A long stretch of beach without the crowd. I dunno about the White Beach for I’ve never seen it but this part of Puerto Galera is really lovely. Away from the noise and the hustle of party people. El Cañonero Diving Beach Resort is a place where you can relax and leave all your worries behind, even if the sun don't show up. Such a chill place.
We were quite lucky on our last day for the Coast Guard approved the sailing of the boats to and fro Batangas Port and Puerto Galera. We were lucky enough to hitch on the shuttle service provided by a boat company from our resort to the port. We paid 275 pesos for the shuttle and the boat fare. The boat ride was really crazy. Passengers were firmly holding on to their life vests and screamed everytime a huge wave accosted our way. We were seated on the frontmost part of the boat and were showered by the mists from the sea but we snoozed some more. If you’ve experienced the 7-hour most terrifying boat ride in your life then everything else will seem to be so normal and calm. Believe me.
|the boat to and fro Puerto Galera|
Talipanan Beach in Puerto Galera on a very bad weather for 3 days didn’t ruin our trip. This is the perfect hideaway from everything and everyone.
I didn’t wish that it was sunny. I didn’t have this “we should’ve been down there in the waters diving” feeling. I didn’t even wish that we should’ve stayed somewhere else dry and warm. Everything was just wonderful as it can be. Sometimes (or most of the time), it’s really not the journey nor the destination but the company you are with that complements every trip.
El Cañonero Diving Beach Resort (book online)
Talipanan Beach, Puerto Galera, Mindoro Oriental
Contact Number: (+63) 915.845.4399
Contact Number: (+63) 915.845.4399
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org