Guest Post by John McIntyre
When you hear the phrase “tropical paradise”, what images come to mind?
Do you immediately imagine long, white sandy beaches and pristine blue water? How about tall coconut trees swaying in the breeze and traditional bamboo huts? Or perhaps you think about succulent tropical fruits, delightful seafood and relaxing in a hammock while looking at an amazing sunset?
When I think of tropical paradise, I think of all these things, so when I went to Puerto Galera in the Philippines, I was blown away.
Puerto Galera is strikingly similar to my vision of tropical paradise. If tropical paradise reminds you of similar things, you’ll appreciate this marvelous place too.
First, I had to catch a banca boat to the island of Oriental Mindoro. The weather was fantastic on the day I made my crossing. The sky was bright blue and I couldn’t see a cloud in any direction. The ocean was flat, so no one got sea sick on the way over.
The banca boat brought me to Muelle Pier, the main tourist pier in Puerto Galera. This is also the inlet of Puerto Galera bay, known as one of the most beautiful bays in the world.
At Muelle Pier, I met my guide from Badladz, the Puerto Galera resort where I was staying. A short, 5-minute ride in their shuttle-bus brought me to the Badladz Beach Resort. I’d seen a few pictures from their website, but I was pleasantly surprised when I arrived.
The resort is located a short distance from the center of Puerto Galera. It is tucked away in a quiet area and is surrounded on three sides by houses, not resorts and hotels. In fact, I found out that it is the only resort in the area. On the fourth side is Small Tabinay Beach, a half-mile stretch of soft sand and beautiful blue water.
I was fairly impressed with the rooms. They had everything I needed. My only complaint was that they were a little small. As I didn’t spend much time in my room, this wasn’t really a problem, but I can imagine it may be for some people. Each room had air-conditioning, fan, cable TV and a temperamental hot water shower (sometimes it was hot, sometimes it was cold).
This was my home for the next three days while I explored the area. So far so good!
Since I arrived early, I had breakfast after dropping my bags in the room.
Badladz Resort in Puerto Galera
Over the next few days, I went exploring around Puerto Galera and did a bunch of different activities. The town itself is nothing to get excited about. It is a typical provincial Filipino town. There are a few supermarkets, an immigration office and an assortment of bars (both local and western owned bars).
I walked the road to Sabang, a 7 kilometer journey that winds through the jungle. I really enjoyed this walk as there were numerous great vantage points along the road where you could see all around the area.
Puerto Galera is known as one of the best scuba diving locations in the world. With that, I knew that I had to go scuba diving. I signed up at a local dive shop and they took me to a few of the dive sites around the area. This experience is highly recommended if you are ever in the area!
During the evenings, I would read a book or visit the local nightlife scene.
Sabang, one of the main nightlife areas was a little too crazy for my tastes. I ended up spending more time in the relaxed bars in White Beach, the other main nightlife area.
When my stay at Badladz came to an end, I was sad to go! I really enjoyed Puerto Galera and I plan to go back soon. In particular, I want to explore more of the scuba diving.
About the Author
John McIntyre is an Australian but currently lives in the Philippines.
He has fallen in love with the natural beauty of the country and spends his time exploring and taking photos.