7 Fantastic Beaches in San Antonio Zambales (with Tips and Directions!)

Anawangin Cove
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List of Best Beaches in San Antonio Zambales, Philippines

Zambales is a province in Luzon, the northernmost main island of the Philippine archipelago. The province is adjacent to the sea, so it is known for its fresh seafood and beaches. The municipality of San Antonio in Zambales, the southernmost municipality that directly faces the sea, is equally blessed with several beaches. In this post, we listed 7 fantastic Beaches in San Antonio, Zambales. Read on..

Anawangin Cove by Elallasola.com
Anawangin Cove by Elallasola.com

Beaches are the kinds of place that attract any kind of person. Beaches are mostly accessible, public, and open. Getting to beaches does not require much, yet they offer us a lot—the smell of that salty, fresh seaside air, an unobstructed view of the horizon, and a healthy dose of sunshine, to name a few.

Putting all the beaches in San Antonio, Zambales into a hierarchy is sort of impossible. Aside from not being able to visit all of the beaches yet, it’s not good to compare apples to oranges. Each beach has its own perks. Nevertheless, I have created a list of seven of the most fantastic beaches in San Antonio, Zambales… and I more than willing to add more to this list someday.

Pundaquit Beach

Pundaquit is one of the 14 barangays that make up the municipality of San Antonio. This barangay is known for being a fishing village as well as a tourist hotspot. The beach, named after the barangay, is known for having clean shorelines and calm waters. Aside from that, Pundaquit Beach is known for being the jump-off point for most of the other amazing beaches in San Antonio. We’ll talk about these beaches further down the list.

Pundaquit Beach
Anawangin Cove Photo credit: incrediblethots via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

The waters here are generally calm but become suitable for surfing during the Monsoon season, which usually kicks in during the months of May through October.

How to get Pundaquit Beach: From Manila, hop aboard a bus bound to Iba, Zambales. Get off once the bus reaches the bus stop at San Antonio’s Municipal Hall near the public market. From there, you can get a tricycle ride to get to Pundaquit. For private vehicles, travel North via the NLEX. Then, drive along the SCTEX bound for Subic. Exit at Subic, and you will see Olongapo Public Cemetery. Turn left from here and drive until you see the Iba-San Antonio intersection. Turn to San Antonio, and follow the main road before turning left once again. From there, there will be several signs that will lead you to Pundaquit.

Anawangin Cove

If you like swimming, hiking, camping, staring at the stars, or, just taking pictures, then Anawangin Cove is the place to go! Anawangin Cove is one of the beaches that travelers can reach from Pundaquit Beach. It is a crescent-shaped beach that directly overlooks the sea. Unlike most beaches, Anawangin Cove has its own designated camping area in its own woods. That means you can swim to your heart’s content with the sea nearby.

Anawangin Cove
Anawangin Cove Photo credit: GreenArcher04 via Foter.com / CC BY-NC

If you don’t fancy swimming or camping out, however, then you can hike on one of the hills in Anawangin Cove. Don’t worry, it’s not a mountain so even non-hikers can conquer it. Getting to the top would offer one a bird’s eye view of the entire Anawangin Cove, and the infinitely stretching sea. If you’re lucky enough, you can chance upon the creek that is hidden in this cove.

How to get to Anawangin Cove: From Pundaquit Beach, you can rent a boat to get you to Anawangin Cove. Also Read: Travel Guide: How to Get to Anawangin Cove from Manila

Nagsasa Cove

Nagsasa Cove is one of the wonders of San Antonio, Zambales. In 1991, the nearby Mt. Pinatubo interrupted. It was one of the most devastating natural disasters in Philippine history. Nagsasa Cove, which was very, very, nearby, was buried in gray volcanic ash and turned the cove, which was once a home to some, into ruins. Through time, the piece of land was transformed into a natural wonder—trees started to grow and the beach slowly took its shape to the shape it has today.

Beaches in San Antonio Zambales
Nagsasa Cove photo by Nagsasa Cove FB / Beaches in San Antonio Zambales

Many people still wonder today how Nagsasa Cove turned out into the beautiful beach paradise it is now. Now, the cove is a grey-sanded beach that is beautifully gifted with conifer-like Agoho Trees and clear waters. Its waters are shallow and its nearby hills are suitable for hiking, and camping, much like Anawingan Cove. Visitors to this area can also go on a little hiking adventure because Nagsasa is also known for being home to a small waterfall that only the hikers with a keen eye can see.

How to get to Nagsasa Cove: Getting to this beach paradise also requires riding a boat from Pundaquit Beach. If you’re a group of hikers, you can take on a 5-6 hour trek to Mt. Nagsasa from Sitio San Martin in Subic.

Camara Island

Camara Island is one of the two closest islands to Pundaquit. In fact, it is so close that it is visible from Pundaquit Beach.

Camara Island
Camara Island photo by Pundaquit.com

Camara Island is a giant lump of rock with a very small sandy area, and if Anawangin and Nagsasa Cove are abundant with trees, Camara Island is abundant with rock formations. This island offers an excellent view of the deep-blue-colored seas, and its geological wonders can be trekked as well. The island has an islet connected to it and is connected by a long sandbar that is visible and walkable during the low tide season.

How to get to Camara Island: Getting here is just a short boat ride away from Pundaquit Beach as well.

Capones Island

Capones Island is the second island closest to Pundaquit Beach. Like its neighbor Camara Island, Capones Island is characterized by having several rock formations, but the former being larger and having steeper cliffs.

Capones Island (photo by GreenArcher04 via Flickr)
Capones Island (photo by GreenArcher04 via Flickr)

A distinct feature of this island is a lone lighthouse that stands in its coralline shores. The abandoned lighthouse used to serve as a guide for trading boats trekking the seas at nighttime during the Spanish Colonization Era in the country.

How to get to Capones Island: A 15 to 30-minute boat ride will get you from Pundaquit Beach to Capones Island.

Talisayin Cove

Talisayin Cove is oftentimes overlooked because of its neighbors Anawangin and Nagsasa Cove. But its seclusion of Talisayin Cove’s strongest trait.

Talisayin Cove photo by TheLostKids.ph
Talisayin Cove photo by TheLostKids.ph

Like most beaches in San Antonio, Talisayin Cove has grayish sands because of the volcanic ashes deposits in 1991. It also has rock formations that are climbable, and which offers an excellent view of the shore, the Agoho treetops, and the mountain ranges that cradle the beach. If you prefer sightseeing on the waters, you can go on a boat ride to gaze at the enormous rock formations nearby. Camping out here is the only accommodation available.

How to get to Talisayin Cove: Hop on a boat from Pundaquit Beach. Since this beach is close to Nagsasa Beach, you can ride a boat from there as well.

Silanguin Cove

If you’re looking for a more secluded beach, Silanguin Cove should be your pick. Among the beaches in this list, it’s the farthest and is said to be the most recently discovered.

Silanguin Cove photo by El Paradise
Silanguin Cove photo by El Paradise

Silanguin Cove is comprised of several colors—grey sands, translucent waters, green conifer-like trees, and reddish brown mountain ranges in the backdrop. The beach is not developed and is far from mainland Zambales, so this beach is the perfect getaway for people who just want to get a break from busy, urban life, and camp out with the stars.

How to get to Silanguin Cove: You know the drill. It’s a boat ride from Pundaquit Beach as well!

Some tips when going beach hopping in San Antonio, Zambales:

  1. If you’re from Manila, it is best to ride a bus in Caloocan City, as the Zambales-bound buses in Buendia and Cubao can get really crowded. Of course, traveling early to avoid the rush hours is still the best solution to crowds.
  2. You can buy several fresh seafoods and other food items in San Antonio Public Market since Zambales-bound buses stop here as well. The market has a wide selection of seafood that you can grill once you get to the beaches. There is also a tricycle station in the market where you can get a ride to Pundaquit Beach.
  3. Since most of the beaches in San Antonio Zambales require a boat ride, make sure that your bag is waterproof, or store items like clothes and batteries in Ziplock. The closest boat ride is more than 15 minutes long so expect that the waves can splash a lot of times.
  4. Bring extra batteries and make sure to charge your gadgets fully. Most of the beaches in San Antonio are secluded and not developed and therefore don’t have electricity. Or if you’re up to it, don’t bring your gadgets at all. It’s a simple twist so you can immerse yourself in the waters even more (literally!).
  5. Bring your own tents. All of the beaches here can be camped on. Bringing your own tent can cut off costs of renting the ones being offered on the beach.
  6. Make sure to have fun!

Have you been to any of these Beaches in San Antonio Zambales? Share your comments below 🙂

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