When it comes to beaches and vacation spots, the Philippines offers you some of the most amazing choices across the world. There are more beaches in the country than we can count, and visitors will find each of them fascinating. So to help you choose the best beaches in the Philippines, we selected the best five in the archipelago that are simply to die for!
1. El Nido Beach
In the northeastern region of Palawan, El Nido Beach is famous for its dramatic limestone formations. Apart from offering a good venue for snorkeling, scuba diving and sailing, this pristine beach also welcomes rock climbers eager to challenge themselves on the impressive rocks that lay rise above the water. There are over 30 Deep Water Soloing (DWS) routes here, with a huge potential for more!
Photo by Aleksandr Zykov
There are plenty of fun and thrilling activities you can engage in on El Nido Beach, from sky diving to surfing. Right across the beach, you’ll find quaint resorts where you can spend your nights enjoying the peace and calm. If you would like to explore the surroundings and put your skills to the test, you have plenty of options – there are various hiking routes and biking trails around the beach. For something shorter, you can take a 20-minute tricycle ride to the south of the beach where you can play with your feet in the sand while enjoying some fruity cocktails.
2. Puerto Galera
Photo by Eric Pesik
Puerto Galera Beach, located in Oriental Mindoro province, has been a UNESCO-protected venue since 1973. The Puerto Galera region boasts some of the most beautiful white sand beaches in the Philippines that are ideal for snorkeling, swimming, relaxation and sailing. Puerto Galera Beach includes diverse diving sites and hosts a dense population of marine species. At the marine sanctuary, you can participate in diving activities. Of course, you can also enjoy your standard beach activities including lounging, spa days and water sports.
If you would like to make the most of your trip here, it is advisable to visit during the high season, which runs between April and June. However, you can also have a great time during the low season, but you might have to endure the humidity.
3. Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte
Often called the Boracay of the North, Pagudpud on Ilocos Norte is a stunning beach covered in white sand, with numerous water activities at hand. Around the beach, there are 5-star resorts that face the crystal blue waters. When visiting the beach though, make sure to carry enough cash as there are no ATMs within, nor are there malls where you could shop. You will be glad to find that Pagudpud is one of the least crowded surfing destinations in the Philippines.
Photo by Ilocos Norte
The most beautiful thing about the beach is that you will not be fighting for space with other tourists because there are few numbers even during the high season. This is not because it lacks beauty or fun activities, but due to the fact that not many people have learned about the beach yet. You can take your very first steps into the world of kitesurfing and, apart from relaxing at the beach, you could spare some time to visit the old Spanish houses located along Calle Crislogo. Also, enjoy the famous Vigan empanada prepared using traditional methods and ingredients, a famous Philippinese street food.
4. Mactan Beach
Located on Cebu Island, Mactan Beach is yet another awesome choice for your vacation. Recently, Travel + Leisure magazine readers voted Cebu Island as the sixth best island in the world. The island is popular for its many tourist sites and attractions, which means that, apart from enjoying the vibrant beach life, you will also get an opportunity to learn about the culture and people that live in this place. Cebu is home to more than 430,000 inhabitants and is the most densely populated island in the country. Among the many exciting activities you can choose from, we should probably mention snorkeling, diving, sailing, para-sailing and jet skiing.
Photo by Muddycrab
Due to the high number of visitors on the beach, it is most advisable to visit during the low season to avoid overcrowding. For someone who loves the dry season, you will have the best time between January and May. Rainfall is expected throughout the rest of the year, and there can be occasional showers during the dry months too. While at the beach, you have several choices for resorts, all of which are world-class level. The service around here is awesome and there are waterfalls, lakes and lagoons in the neighboring towns thata re not too far off.
5. Boracay, Aklan
Located 195 miles (315 km) south of Manila, Boracay is a small island that is famously known for its white powdery sands and crystal blue waters. No wonder this is one of the most visited beaches in the Philippines! It has more than 350 resorts and over 2,000 rooms for guests, so you will indeed have a wide variety to choose from. Many of the hotels available are luxury units, but you will find budget-friendly accommodation too.
The beach offers a wide variety of activities to choose from, including kitesurfing, windsurfing, scuba diving and snorkeling. Those who choose the latter will enjoy the privilege of observing the rich sea life that is indigenous to the country. Helmet diving is another popular activity here, which involves putting on a helmet with glass plates then climbing a ladder down to a shallow ocean floor, at which point you are able to walk around like you were on land. There are many fun sites and activities that will definitely convince you to extend your stay.
D. Scott Carruthers is a travel enthusiast who has been reviewing different travel destinations. He offers useful information about the different beaches and places he has been to on his website, Dennis Scott Carruthers Travels.
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