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Wednesday, February 8

The Pangasinan Escapade

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Patar Beach in Bolinao
Looking for an unwinding and wonderful getaway doesn’t always mean spending too much money. If you are craving to spend no-work days on an affordable but worth-a-memory trip, then you can try planning a trip to Pangasinan and see wonders you may never forget. Our barkada had this escape to Bolinao (and visit to other Pangasinan spots, of course) last September 2011 so it’s time for you to check this out.

Pangasinan beaches are among the best beaches in Luzon island, and Pangasinan resorts are plenty (you can choose from either a high class Pangasinan resort or any of the many budget friendly Pangasinan resorts). There are other Pangasinan tourist spots other than the beaches. But if you were only to choose resorts in Pangasinan, more likely you will be ending up enjoying your vacation. And there are a variety of Pangasinan beaches to choose from.
Bolinao Lighthouse

PLACES INCLUDED IN THIS TRIP: Manaoag, Alaminos City, Bolinao (all in Pangasinan)
FEATURED SPOTS: Shrine of Our Lady of Manaoag, Hundred Islands National Park, Golden Beach of Patar
HIGHLIGHTS: devotion, island hopping, swimming, snorkeling, diving, beach bumming, trekking, *planking

PLAN BEFORE YOU GO: The Pangasinan Escapade Edition

Before you say, “Let’s go to the beach!” it’s still better to sketch your plans first. Planning is so important that without it, you might miss some of the spots you must never ever forget to visit. Of course, we are setting aside other circumstances that may happen amid the travel which is unexpected most of the times. Other than that, it is also essential to list down all the things you and your barkada will need during the trip. So let’s break down all the things that should be setting in mind before yelling, “Let’s go!”

1. THE DESTINATION. The first thing in the plan which involves the map is your destination. It is important that you are aware on the locations of the towns and spots you are going to visit. With this trip, it is vital to know how far Pangasinan is from your home (and in our case, Baguio City). If you already know that, you can actually start listing down necessary materials for the trip and start budgeting for your pocket money.

THE MAP. So do you have an idea now how far Bolinao is from Baguio?
2. WHAT’S FIRST? Using Garmin’s MapSource (mapping software like Google Maps/Google Earth), we examined the distances of the towns, stopovers and tourist spots we are going to visit. From this, we listed the proper sequence of the places from Baguio City. We found out that to be able to maximize our time, we should follow this trip sequence: Manaoag Shrine – Hundred Islands –Bolinao Town – Patar Beach.

SIGHT THE DISTANCES. With your map, you can actually make a sequence on how you will be able to maximize your time.
Note: The sequence above is for travelers coming from Northern Luzon. Travellers from Manila can also follow the sequence, though commuters will have to cut trips several times.

3. THE ITINERARY. Itinerary is the “path” of your trip, without it, you might screw things up. Even if you don’t know how to make a detailed itinerary, just try writing down a simple one. And ‘simple’ means listing down the possible activities that you will do and places you will visit within the time frame of your vacation. Try to maximize your limited time. Set your estimated time of departure from the meeting place of your team, and estimate your time of arrival to your hometown from the last place that you visited. Well, if you are really screwed up doing your own itinerary, there is always the Internet that saves your day. J
With regards to our itinerary, we planned to go out at 5 A.M. and arrive again in Baguio at night of the next day (thus we only had a 2D/1N trip).
This is our simplest itinerary: 

 DAY 1
Visit Manaoag Church and Shrine of Our Lady of Manaoag
Island Hopping in Hundred Islands National Park with Snorkeling
Camp at Patar Beach

Swimming at Patar Beach
Visit the Cape Bolinao Lighthouse
Visit the 3 Caves (Cindy’s, Wonderful and Enchanted)
Head to Punta Riviera Resort for Kayaking
Visit Bolinao Church, Tara Falls and Bolinao Falls

Your itinerary is like a draft; it may change as soon as you do your trip. You are just outlining of what could possibly be done within the time that you will visit the places.

4. KNOW THE BUS SCHEDULE. If you plan a certain time of departure, make sure the bus that you will ride in will leave around that hour. Don’t plan leaving 5 A.M. when the first trip of the bus leaves at 6 A.M.

Planking in Governor's Island, Hundred Islnds National Park

Snorkeling mode in Pangasinan

5.    WHAT TO BRING? We are four in our barkada, so we divided out things that we should bring. Here is our list of basic things that we brought when we had our trip. Most of the things were packed in both backpack and duffel bag.

·         TOWELS
·         CAMCORDER
·         CELLPHONES
·         SANITIZER
·         TENT
·         CHARCOAL
·         SCHOOL ID (if you’re a student like us)

Other necessary things are dependent on where you will stay during the night. We planned to camp at the beach since it’s free; hence, we needed to bring a camping tent (we actually brought two since we are two boys and two girls in our barkada).

The park beside the Shrine of Our Lady Manaoag.

KNOW YOUR BUDGET! After listing all the things we might need during the trip, we already computed and estimated the total expenses of our getaway. This part of planning is so important that this solely can dictate where, how far and how long you will stay and go. We canvassed our fare and estimated the other expenses we might incur and the outcome is between P1,500 to P2,000 each. Very affordable for a 2 DAYS/1 NIGHT trip (for 4 pax) which already includes EVERYTHING from bus fare to a night stay then back to Baguio again. Getting excited enough for this awe-inspiring golden beach plus island hopping and snorkeling getaway? Who won’t!

Part 1: The Pangasinan Escapade

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  1. Nice blog! We'll be following your itinerary. Plano rin namin pumunta ng Pangasinan this weekend. By the way from Baguio din kame. Keep it up!

  2. Can you give me the name of the place you stayed in? My family's planning to go there but it's so hard to find a transient home.

  3. Can you give me the name of the place you stayed in? My family's planning to go there but it's so hard to find a transient home.

  4. Thanks for sharing your DIY trip to Pangasinan, the photos are also good! Nice blog :)

  5. That looks an awesome place. I'm gonna try to visit it. I'm pretty sure me and my friends are going to love it. Check out the Anvaya Cove Bataan, you'll love it too. Anyway, Thanks for sharing!


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