Puerto Galera Sightseeing & Activities
There never seems to be enough time in the day to visit all the tourist spots in Puerto Galera. Every trip to the island paradise seems to produce new wonders, and other places to explore. For the newcomers, some of the areas that you should not fail to visit are listed below.
This is the town itself, and it is as good a starting point to begin your exploration of Puerto Galera as any. While providing all the amenities and comforts of most modern cities, its petite size means you can conduct any matter, from buying food to any sort of business transaction, can be done without the need for transport. Not only is it more convenient, but also provides you with a chance to glimpse the town at your own leisurely place.
Other attractions of the Poblacion are the cockfights held every weekend near Tabinay. Cockfighting is part of Filipino culture, and it offers foreigners on the island y to experience it first hand.
With over 30 dive sites, several beach resorts and a wide array of bars and clubs, Sabang Beach has become the premiere party place in Puerto Galera.
In the mornings and afternoons you can go swimming or diving, with the diving sites offering some of the most striking corals and underwater life forms you will ever see. In the evenings, you can dance the night away, or sing along at one of the numerous karaoke bars there.
Sabang is one of the most popular beach resorts on Puerto Galera. With plenty of bars, it is well known for its nightlife, as there are plenty of discos and clubs, ideal for those who like to party the night away.
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Small Laguna Beach
As opposed to the party atmosphere in Sabang Beach, Small Laguna Beach is a more quiet and reserved place. There are some eateries near the shore, but those who travel to this site do so to snorkel. With its splendid coral reefs and colorful marine life, spending time in its waters is an adventure quite like no other.
For those who have gone snorkeling, the experience is quite like no other; gazing at the corals, fish, and other marine life is like entering another world altogether, a place far removed from the concrete jungle that man has created.
A little over 8 miles from the main town, Tamaraw Falls is one of the most breathtaking of the numerous waterfalls in Puerto Galera. A naturally formed pool lies at the base of the cascading waters.
When you go sightseeing in Puerto Galera, one area you wouldn’t want to skip is the Tamaraw Falls, located very near San Teodoro. There are several fine beaches in Puerto Galera, but Tamaraw Falls is in a league of its own. Consisting of several small waterfalls, they all come together at the bottom, forming one of the most refreshing areas you can bathe in, providing for a revitalizing experience.
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Aninuan Falls is, together with Tamraraw Falls, the most well known waterfall in Puerto Galera. Aside from admiring the waters themselves, another popular activity that both locals and tourists engage in is trekking up the creek nearby. Once the trek is finished (roughly 45 minutes), the climber is ushered into a forest filled with brilliant greens and exotic forms of vegetation.
The Excavation Museum
The repository of the archaeological relics of Puerto Galera, the Excavation Museum, situated near the Town Hall and a bank, is where most of the tourists interested in the history of the island drop by. Inside, you will find numerous artifacts dating from different time periods. Some of the most famous items originated from the Ming dynasty, over a thousand years old.
Puerto Galera is an island province steeped in history, and it is only proper that a sanctuary to preserve its heritage be established. There is one, and it is called the Excavation Museum, the main repository of the island’s history.
The Excavation Museum is rich in content, and can be divided into several sections. Among the most popular attractions are the objects and relics collected from the various eras. They are not just preserved but information is also provided for the objects on display, giving further insight for student and history lovers.
Among the treasures you will find there are ancient swords, Chinese vases, jars, and other antiques obtained from sunken ships that traversed the nearby straits. There are also several vintage photos of its beautiful beaches, including rare underwater photographs.
Other valuable and interesting articles in the Excavation Museum include photographs of the various beaches, and also underwater shots as well.
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The Mangyan Village
This is where the aborigines of Mindoro had settled in, and because of its vicinity to the Small Tabinay River, it has, since ancient times, been associated with gold panning and mining. It is still possible to go over some of the areas where ancient peoples had engaged in the digging and refining of gold in the past.
Today it is also where you can go mountain climbing, and from the top one can see Puerto Galera in all its glory. Also, it is where you can catch a glimpse of other lands like Batangas and the islands of Maricaban and Verde.
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Big La Laguna and Sabang Beach may be the most well known, but Talipanan Beach, about 40 minutes away from Puerto Galera, is no less attractive and scenic.
Aside from the pristine waters, another attraction of Talipanan Beach is that it is quieter when compared with the other more popular beaches. The cottages and resorts nearby are also top notch.
For those who prefer a more quiet and relaxed atmosphere, Talipanan Beach in Puerto Galera is one of your best options. There are quite a few resorts here, but they are spaced out well, and being situated near the end of most transport routes, it is often called the most tranquil area on the island. The cool breeze from the nearby shores will do wonders to uplift the spirit of the individual.
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At over 8,500 ft (2,000 meters), Mount Halcon is considered as one of the most formidable mountains in the Philippines. While it is not the tallest, its imposing ridges, crevices and rugged features make it one of the most difficult, yet exciting sites you can visit in Puerto Galera.
Should you decide to go up Mount Halcon, make sure you not only get an experienced guide, but also that he or she is capable of communicating with the minorities or peoples that reside near the mountain.
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Big Game Fishing
The abundance of numerous fish types in Puerto Galera have led to the increase in popularity of big game fishing. Not only has this become a sport, but also a sought after tourist activity. Today there are several fishing tours that you can avail of. Most of the big game fishing here are of the catch and release type to protect the species.
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Cockfighting is one of the most popular sport/game activities in the Philippines, with competitions held in virtually every province. While there is very little cockfighting in Puerto Galera itself, you can easily book a flight on the island that will take you to Calapan in Mindoro, where this spectator sport takes place every Sunday afternoon. Betting is permissible, and you can make a wager in as many cockfights as you like.
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There are so many tourist spots in Puerto Galera that staying on the main island itself is not enough. To get a better sense of your surroundings, island hopping is highly recommended.
You can start your island hopping at Haligi Beach, which is in Boquete Island. There you can relax on the soothing white sands, or you can go scuba diving. From there it is only a short distance to San Antonio Island, home of Long Beach and some of the most awe-inspiring coral reefs on the planet. Alongside it is Varadero Bay, where you can relax at some of the best resorts that Puerto Galera has to offer.
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White Beach is on the west side of Puerto Galera city, only a few kilometers away, making it one of the most easily accessible of all the beaches on the island.
Not only is it easy to reach, but White Beach in Puerto Galera also attracts a lot of the locals, perfect for those that want to meet and make friends with Filipinos. Apart from the beach resorts, there are also several dive centers in the area where you can purchase scuba gear or hire a guide. Because it isn’t that far off from Sabang, you can move back and forth between the two beaches.
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With an abundance of streams and falls, kayaking is one activity in Puerto Galera that will be enjoyed by the whole family. There are several locations where you can go start kayaking, but one you shouldn’t miss out on is the Puerto Galera Harbor. There are also several options available with regards to the trip itself, with single or double kayaks, which you can rent for the whole day.
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Aside from scuba diving and snorkeling, sightseeing in Puerto Galera is one of the most enjoying things you can do. You have several options, including going through the jungles or trekking up the mountains. Either or both will reward you with plenty of opportunity to savor the natural wonders inherent in the island province, from its magnificently sculpted landscapes to its wide assortment of animals.
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Sightseeing in Puerto Galera can take many forms, and one of the most desired nowadays is that of jungle trekking. There are several mountain treks and jungle trails that you’ll come across in this island province in Mindoro, each concealing hidden treasures.
Bondong Jungle is one of the most popular trekking sites, as it has several rivers, streams and exotic plants scattered throughout. However, there are other lush greens in the province, some of which house the Mangyan tribes, and also the famous Tamaraw (a wild buffalo).
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Overlooking the scenic beach of Puerto Galera is the imposing form of Mount Malasimbo (over 2,000 ft high), one of several mountain ranges that encompass the northern borders of Mindoro (the others being Mount Alinbayan, Mount Calavite and Mount Talipanan).
Surrounding Mount Malasimbo in Puerto Galera are several types of exotic and unique flowers and plants, most of which grow exclusively in the region. There are also rare fauna there, including the deer, wild boars and numerous types of birds that fly around the mountain. It is thus no surprise that Mount Malasimbo has become a very popular trekking destination.
From the summit of Mount Malasimbo you will get great vistas of the clear blue skies and also the coast of Batangas. From the northwestern side you will be able to see the Puerto Galera coast and also that of the famed Verde Island.
A trek to Mount Malasimbo can assume two forms: you can take the usual mountain trail and once past the water source you can begin the ascent. However, another option is to go the other route, passing by Alinbayan and Talipanan in the process. While this can be difficult, it is the one desired by most mountaineers.
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There are several lakes and rivers scattered throughout Puerto Galera and Mindoro, but without question one of the most beautiful is Lake Naujan. With an area covering approximately 81,250 sq. km (48,000 sq. m) the lake ranks as the fifth largest overall in the Philippine archipelago.
Located on the southeastern part of Oriental Mindoro, it is part of the Naujan Lake National Park, one of the prime sightseeing spots on the island.
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Sightseeing in Puerto Galera would not be complete if you don’t take a dive into its pristine waters. There are numerous dive sites in the Philippines, but few of them can match, in terms of diversity and beauty, the ones you can find on this island.
For those who love to snorkel, every type -from wreckages to drifting, to going down walls, underwater caverns, night diving- it is all here. The coral reefs are some of the most diversified in the world, and also feature some of the most unique fish on the planet.
What makes snorkeling in Puerto Galera even more exciting is that all 20 of the major dive centers are in close proximity to one another, making it easy to go from one site to the next, saving you the costs of traveling from one place to another.
If you want to take a breather from all the partying and nightlife in Puerto Galera, look no further than Coco Beach. Promenading on the shoreline can be a rejuvenating experience, and dipping into its fresh waters can also do wonders for your body and spirit.
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Long Beach in Puerto Galera is where you should go if you want to get away from all the hustle and bustle found in most other tourist hotspots. Here you can have the beach mostly to yourself, with only the cool breeze and the mountains as your companion. If you want to go snorkeling, there are usually several bancas (boats) with fishermen and local folks in the vicinity that would be happy to take you there too.
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Part and parcel of scuba diving activity in Puerto Galera are scouring and plumbing the deepest recesses of the sea to look for sunken Spanish galleons. According to the stories, several of these ships harbored treasures and antiques, which make diving and exploring of the deep oceans more exciting.
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The Baluarte Watchtower
One of the most storied historical monuments in Puerto Galera, the Baluarte Watchtower, situated off Luna Beach, was utilized by the Spaniards to guard over the shores. Although most of the structure is in ruins, what remains is still an imposing site, and it still looks over the beach like a sentinel.
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Dolphin watching in Puerto Galera is one of the most popular tourist activities on the island, as the scattered islets provide plenty of opportunity to spot these magnificent creatures.
The best place to catch a glimpse of these dolphins is by taking a boat or ferry along the Batangas / Puerto Galera route. However, you can also see them when you go island hopping, especially at Coral Gardens in Long Beach and Aninuan Beach.
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The Black Rice Display Board
At the Muelle Pier off the shores of Puerto Galera is a display board that collects black rice grains emanating from the sea. This is the Black Rice Display Board, and the history behind this custom is that during the 18th century a large fire destroyed the granary that was operating in the vicinity, the end result being the grain were blackened and cast into the waters.
To this day, whenever the waves would rush onto the coasts, pieces of black rice would be tossed onto the land, which are collected and put up on the board. It remains one of the most interesting sightseeing spots in Puerto Galera.
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The Ponderosa Golf and Country Club
When sightseeing in Puerto Galera, you cannot afford to miss out on the Ponderosa Golf and Country Club. Although the site was originally intended for golfers, it has become a premiere tourist attraction as well.
Not only is the entire nine hole course situated some 2,000 ft (600 meters) above sea level, but from the clubhouse you are given a majestic view of the entire island. If the weather permits, as it usually does, you might even see, lying across the still waters, the island of Luzon itself.
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The Bondong Jungle
If you have a love for adventure, then a trek into the Bondong Jungle would be right up your alley.
An expedition into the Bondong Jungle of Puerto Galera is usually a whole day affair, as there are simply too many activities to get into. You can start by choosing from the various hiking trails available, each more interesting than the last. Once inside the jungle itself, you’ll be surrounded by myriad forms of flora and fauna.
There are also an assortment of lakes, rivers and creeks, giving you plenty of opportunity to go kayaking, scuba diving or rafting. If you are up for it, you can go up the cliff nearby and after reaching the top, jump down into the cool waters below.
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Big La Laguna Beach
Those who go sightseeing in Puerto Galera never fail to drop by Big La Laguna Beach, widely recognized as one of the best beaches in the country, and the world.
There are several aspects of Big La Laguna Beach that appeals to tourists. One of them is the sheer tranquility of the waters. This makes the waters of this beach not just one of the cleanest, but also one of the safest, perfect for family outings. As with most of the beaches in Puerto Galera, the deep waters hold several coral reefs and exotic fish, ideal for scuba divers.
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Riding the banana boat is one of the most famous activities in Puerto Galera. Indulge in the sightseeing activity to engage when riding the banana boat to explore the Puerto Galera beach shore while enjoying the comforting breezy air and cool sprays of water from the crystal clear Puerto Galera beach.
Tourists and locals alike love the banana boat ride that gives them the relaxing feeling of getting in touch with the Puerto Galera beach water. One of the most exciting sightseeing activity when visiting Puerto Galera is enjoying the water adventure of an exciting ride with the banana boat which is more fun to ride in groups especially when the banana boat tips over sending everyone to a splashing dive on the cool beach water of Puerto Galera.
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One of the sightseeing adventures that take a 30 minute walk from the town proper of Puerto Galera is the Baclaran Mangyan Settlement. This area is reserved as homes to the native Mangyans in Puerto Galera and it is located about 1 kilometer from behind the Puerto Galera white beach.
The Mangyan Settlement has become a favorite sightseeing spot in Puerto Galera as it takes visitors to the adventure of mountain hiking which brings a more exciting experience. The place is a good place for sightseeing especially for individuals who love the adventure of mountain climbing.
Enjoy an extraordinary encounter with the wild for a sightseeing adventure with reptilian species at Paradise Zoo in Puerto Galera. The place is a favorite sightseeing place to visit by tourists to see the biggest collections of reptiles in Asia.
There are about 1000 reptilian species and several endangered animal species to see at the Paradise zoo. One can see some Philippine spitting cobras, black mambas, local lizards and several orphaned wild life among other numerous animal species in the wilds. A sightseeing visit at Paradise zoo takes visiting tourists and locals alike to an extremely fun experience in the wild.
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Ponderosa Golf Course
Along the foot of Mount Malasimbo in Puerto Galera lies a stunning 9-hole golf course overlooking the entire Puerto Galera bay. This is the Ponderosa Golf Course that has become a tourist attraction in itself owing to the breathtaking sightseeing experience it offers along its 500 meters surroundings filled with captivating views to enjoy watching.
Along with fine dining, a relaxing game of golf and the stunning views to enjoy, the Ponderosa Golf Course is a must see to visiting tourists in Puerto Galera.
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One of the best sightseeing activities when visiting Puerto Galera is by undertaking boating activities to explore the different islands in Puerto Galera. Island hopping has become popular which allow visiting tourists to explore the caves and islands that offer a promising experience with nature. Some tourists would take advantage of exploring the islands of Puerto Galera when boating to reach their destination by snorkeling and diving.
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Aside from the different sightseeing activities to undertake while visiting the haven paradise of Puerto Galera Island is the chance to enjoy having your own henna tattoo usually done by tattoo artists. One can choose from the numerous artistic designs of your choice and at an affordable prize you get an instant tattoo that will bring in good memories of your stay at the paradise island of Puerto Galera.
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Daytrip to Calapan City
A daytrip to Calapan City brings one to explore the capital city of Oriental Mindoro where a line of adventurous and sightseeing activities await them. A day trip to Calapan City can take a tourist to short visit at the Mangyan Heritage Center, a favorite tourist destination in Calapan City. One can find the unlimited collections of researches and topics concerning the eight Mangyan tribes by a Dutch anthropologist consisting of documentaries, old news clippings, vintage recordings and Mangyan artifacts.
One can also pass by along the Strong Republic National Highway in Calapan City which takes one to a breathtaking sight of driving from one island to another. A day trip to Calapan City can take one to various sightseeing activities from various tropical paradise images of roaring waterfalls, lush green forests, white sands and clean beaches that are as good as the ones in Puerto Galera.
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Puerto Galera is known for its sparkling cool water and beautiful beaches that are perfect for beach sports and different water activities such as a game of volleyball, swimming, a sunset cruise, kayaking, boating, jet skiing, snorkeling, banana boat ride, sun bathing and a leisure walk along the white sands of Puerto Galera beaches.
One can definitely enjoy various island hopping activities for sightseeing of the different beaches in Puerto Galera. The Puerto Galera beaches are also known for its perfect diving sites which is one of the favorite water activities of tourists.
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Because Puerto Galera is known for its captivating beaches and numerous wonderful diving sites and unlimited sightseeing activities to undertake on this island many resorts, bars and restaurant establishments as well as diving centers were built as more tourists and visitors go at Puerto Galera for an indulging and relaxing experience on this tropical paradise island.
Bar hopping is one of the most favorite night life activities of visitors in Puerto Galera. Many of the dive centers and hotels in Puerto Galera offers unlimited choices of bars to visit with high quality drinks to offer along with an all night beach dancing activity to enjoy.
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Along Puerto Galera’s Sabang beach is the blue and white floating bar that offers an excellent view overlooking the entire waterfront of Sabang beach. It offers a perfect sightseeing place to watch water sports enthusiasts indulging the cool blue waters of Sabang beach to undertake different water sports activity.
Sumptuous choices of fresh fruits are available with other palatable dishes that can perk anyone’s appetite and are served with fruit shakes and savory sandwiches of your choice. With the entire dish of delicious foods to enjoy one can engage with an endless sun bathing on the mid afternoon sun rays along with the fruit shakes to quench your thirsts.
Getting to the floating bar is made more convenient with a free boat ride available along the Big Apple Dive Resort of Puerto Galera. Enjoy a delightful sightseeing activity along the Puerto Galera’s popular floating bar that makes soaking along the sun rays of Puerto Galera beach an indulging haven place to enjoy.
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Hair Braiding on the Beach
There are unlimited sightseeing and activity options to keep one busy when visiting the paradise island of Puerto Galera. The beaches offer various activities to engage in. One can enjoy swimming on the cool blue waters of Puerto Galera beaches while other just enjoy getting a relaxing massage and hair braiding on the beach.
While having a local braiding your hair some would offer you to have a henna tattoo or a massage to complete the common rituals of activities engaged by most tourists along the Puerto Galera beach. After getting your hair braided by one of the locals you will feel the sudden surge of being “in” with the hottest stylish trend of hair braiding style while walking along the beaches to shop and indulge with sightseeing activities along the sands of Puerto Galera beaches.
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