Roadtrips to Puerto Galera, Philippines
My favorite getaway in the Philippines is the island of Mindaro off the coast of Batangas. About the only way to get there is the ferry from Batangas pier, a couple of hours south of Manila. There is only one boat per day so you have to make sure you get there early. We would usually take a bus from Manila and stay the night in Batangas. The ferry Puerto Galera leaves early in the morning. After landing in Puerto Galera, we'd catch a jeepney to one of the nearby beach resorts. There were several, but I had such a good time at Seashore Lodge that it became my regular spot. There were essentially no Americans on the island. A few might show up looking for the elusive mushrooms, but most of the tourists were Filipino or European. At the time, there was a dive shop and only one niteclub, though I'm sure there are lots more now. There were no phones or televisions on the island and the electricity was intermittent. Even so, the little bamboo cabins, the wonderful breakfasts, the shrimp, the interesting expats and tourists, the clear water and brightly colored coral, the glow-in-the-dark organisms in the breaks of the waves...What can I say? I never wanted to leave. I made several trips there with various friends from Clark AB and always had a great time, although one of my all-time hairiest experiences came on a return trip from Puerto Galera, the rebel training camp at Hidden Falls, but that is another story. Puerto Galera remains near the top of the list of places that I want to visit again.
Living in the Philippines
Working at the 374 TAW
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