Pangasinan is my province (countryside) in the Philippines, around summer or Easter time we used to (and still) love to roam around the various beaches and attractions, with whatever budget we have.
Here are my 10 personal favourite places to visit in ascending order.
10th) Dagupan City
Famous for its Milkfish locally known as ‘Bangus’. Dagupan is the host of the famous ‘Bangus Festival which local people have a mass barbeque of the fish, some of which are given for free.
9th) Alaminos City
Alaminos city is hugely growing in this province, being the nearest city to the iconic ‘Hundred Island National Park’. Sometimes the province could be difficult to get the bare necessities a tourists wants or needs. Alaminos has big restaurant chains such as Mcdonalds, Jolibee, Chowking, Shakeys and more. Usually if me and my cousins get too bored at home we would roam the city and find something to do.
8th) Surip Beach
Surip is our ancestoral beach, its awkward shaped rocks, beach formations make this beach unlike others. Although unknown to tourism, this place is improving year by year, lots of new attractions are being found like caves and cliffs for tourists to go and see. Lastly Surip has a pilgrimage walk which starts beachside and climbs the hill upwards to the peak where the cross is.
7th) (Anda) Tondol Beach
Tondol white sand beach is something different, the beauty here is not its white sands but its shallow waters. You could walk up to 1-3 km (in low tide) in this beach and the water would only be knee or waist height. However shallow waters don’t seem very interesting does it, but what if I say that you see colourful fishes as you walk around. Walking to other more secluded islands here is also possible. The bad aspects though are jelly fishes or stepping on sea urchins, however with its clear waters all you need is to be extra careful. Hiring a wooden raft is also very popular here.
6th) Bolinao Falls
This waterfall is hidden, only known by the locals. It is free however undeveloped, so if your ok with walking on stones or through a jungle then visit here. Its refreshing fresh running water is cool and jumping off the small cliff is the best feeling. Do make sure you know how to swim as there are no attendants at this area.
5th) Enchanted Cave
Only just recently new caves are being found in Bolinao, here visitor are allowed to enter and have a swim, unlike any other place around the world.
4th) Manaoag Church
Always a special place for the family, we always plan to visit here. The catholic church which has been officially declared a Basilica, sits on top of a hill in the town. Famous for some miracles relating to the Lady of Manaoag, are portrayed in various murals. This church is huge in various pilgrimage and for prayer purposes, whilst the history playing huge importance to the region.
3rd) Patar Beach
Patar beach to me is the most beautiful, the sand is soft and the water is clear. The beach can however get very congested at peak times but the scenery never gets old. We’ve been here a few times and watching the sun set here is magical.
2nd) Puerto Del Sol Resort
Definitely one of the best classy resorts in Pangasinan,(or within the northern area anyway). This resort is expensive, but it is just on another class than any other resorts around. The breakfast here is on of the best in any of the resorts/ hotels i’ve had around the world. Puerto del sol has the best views and best part of Patar beach. It is my number 2 as you cant find any other place like this in the province.
1st) Hundred Islands National Park
My personal number 1, simply an iconic attraction in Pangasinan, with a mixture of 100 large and small islands this picturesque national park is a place to visit. I have seen the evolution of this place, having little when I was young, to now having more and more to offer such as a camping facilities, water sports, snorkelling and cliff diving. Traditional Boats called the ‘Banka’ take passengers to a number of islands such as the ‘Quezon island’ and the ‘Govenors island’ where the Big brother house was situated, and many more depending on what activities you want to do. Excellent place for everyone and barbequing is usually popular.