Want to spend your summer in an exclusive exquisite and beautiful paradise? The BACKPACKERS did when we went to Dasol, Pangasinan as part of our Hirit Sa Tag Init for 2014!
VILLA BALINMANOK PRIVATE BEACHES
Dasol, Pangasinan is a third class municipality in Pangasinan. It is one of the numerous towns in the province blessed with magnificent beaches and islands. It is approximately a five to six hour drive from Manila.
Villa Blinmanok is a bay side area where private resorts lie. Getting there is quite tedious. If you do not have a private ride, you can hire a tricycle along the highway in Dasol. Mind you though, the forty minute ride would be bumpy as the road is unpaved most of the way. But I assure you, this would be worth it.
|Marcelino the tent pitched for one tribe in Survivor Pangasinan|
You will be taken in rocky hillsides where you'll get to see wide croplands and quaint small communities before you can take a glimpse of the bay side of Pangasinan. After all, Dasol is both a beach and a plateau. The private beaches will be accessed by taking a left turn along the road where the Balinmanok arch is located. Note that this is not a grand arch, so be alert once you are trudging thirty to forty minutes from the highway. There's a public beach in the form of Tambobong beach where you can camp out. This is usually crowded especially in summer months. If you want a quieter and more secluded place, Villa Balinmanok is much more advisable.
|Coconut tress everywhere|
After taking that turn, you will be greeted by a nice garden where bougainvillas and other flowers are aesthetically arranged to welcome you to paradise. Then you will see the first sight of resorts and a glimpse of the sea.
RECUDO BEACH RESORT
Recudo Beach Resort is recommended among the beaches in Balinmanok compound as it provides a spacious area where you can stroll and enjoy the beach. Its accommodation provides a lap of luxury. You may call it home for the time being as it has complete amenities - kitchen, bedrooms, sala and dining room. It has an inviting front yard with a nice garden decor, coconut trees where you can tie up your hammock and rest.
What can tease up your stay here is the presence of a shipwreck near the beach. It is a Chinese vessel towed in the area and ever since, the remnants of the ship has been a popular attraction in the compound. It has become an awesome snorkeling spot in Balinmanok.
|The shipwreck near the beach|
What I love most about Recudo Beach Resort aside from the beauty of the place and the hospitality of the owners and staff is that they are always ensuring the safety of their guests. We were twenty four and they provided us life jackets during our stay. They even tore up their new life jackets for some of us and reminded us again how to use those. Think of the demonstration of the flight attendants on a plane, this time we were at the beach!
|Boarding the boat with Recudo provided life vests|
If you are in for more adventure, you can sign up for a boat ride to Colibra Island. It is a paradise which is thirty minutes away from Balinmanok. It boasts of its white sand and crystal clear water. It is unspoiled and not yet commercialized like Potipot or Sombrero. No entrance fee is being collected here so you can truly embrace this as a place for us, Pinoys! You can enjoy strolling around the small island and it has perfect swimming spots.
|Survivors heading to Colibra Island|
|BP Angel, Mark and Kent enjoying the beach|
Colibra Island is named after numerous seasnakes that inhabit the island a long time ago. To this day, there aren't that many sea crates here and if you happen to find one, just don't mind it. Although venomous, it's not the aggressive type. The waves can be treacherous during late afternoon so its best to visit the island in the morning.
|Looking far into the open sea|
Aside from Colibra Island, there's the Crocodile Island and the Balinmanok Cove and Cave in the vicinity which you can also visit. You can sign up for a day tour for these attractions in Dasol, Pangasinan.
Here are some of our pictures in Colibra Island:
|The BACKPACKERS in Recudo Beach, Villa Balinmanok, Dasol, Pangasinan!|
How to get there:
|Colibra Island - virgin and unspoiled|
If you are commuting, hop to any Alaminos bound bus. Once at Alaminos, Pangasinan, transfer to a bus bound to Sta. Cruz, Zambales. Tell the conductor to drop you off at Dasol, Pangasinan. Once at Dasol, hire a trike that will get you to Balinmanok Private Beach.
The standard fare for trikes bound to the beach side of Dasol is 500Php. This is because of the condition of the road and the lengthy trip. You may try to haggle with the driver if you are on a budgeted trip.
Bus to Alaminos - 359Php
Bus to Sta. Cruz via Dasol -around 80Php
Trike to Balinmanok - 500Php.
|Summer Selfie! BPs Ralph, Angel, Ghei and Marion|
If you have a private vehicle, follow the route until Alaminos, Pangasinan. If you are not planning to visit Alaminos town proper, turn left at the Alaminos-Mabini highway before the town proper. You will pass by Mabini and Burgos before you get to Dasol, Pangasinan. Turn right at the waiting shed after the bridge. Then it's a forty minute drive to the (most of the times rough) road to the beaches of Dasol.
Finally, there is a blue sign marker to the left side which indicates the entrance to Villa Balinmanok.
How to get to Alaminos? Follow NLEX and SCTEX and exit at Luisita, Tarlac. The tricky part is at the Camiling junction. Follow the path to Camiling town proper. If you go straight, you will find yourselves in the other side of Pangasinan. After Camiling would be the last Tarlac town, San Clemente. The first Pangasinan town that will greet you is Mangatarem all the way to Alaminos.
|BPs Ghei, Ralph, Marion and York|
You can rent Recudo Private Beach Resort's beautiful accommodation for as low as 7,500Php for a group of 10 - 15 persons. It's equal the price of some accessible resorts but this is a complete package and they even provide life vests for guests if you go on an island hopping tour.
Boat ride -> 1,200Php (can accommodate 6 - 8 persons) Note that the waves are strong in the afternoon so it's best to do this in the morning.
You may contact the following numbers for reservations and inquiries:
Mr. Ronald Saltivan
Mrs. Elizabeth Saltivan
Recudo Beach Resort owners
Moreover, this is the venue of the second season of The BACKPACKERS' version of Survivor!
|SURVIVOR PANGASINAN contestants|
It is in this beach and (Colibra) island where sixteen castaways will be competing against each other. They will be tested physically and mentally. Their social skills will be exposed as it can be an emotionally stressful game. Who will outwit, outplay and outlast the rest and become The BACKPACKERS' next ultimate sole survivor?
|SURVIVOR PANGASINAN: Backpackers vs Loved Ones premieres on May 7, 2014 at the Backpackers Adventures blog!|
Survivor Pangasinan cast and crew and Balinmanok Official Facebook Page