10 of the best beaches in Quezon

Whether you're after a private, isolated patch of white-sand beach or a camp site on the shore with like-minded beach goers, Quezon province near Manila has a beach with your name on it

By Celia Nachura

1 Puting Buhangin, Pagbilao


Some 180 kilometers southeast of Manila, Puting Buhangin, also known as Lukang Beach in Pagbilao, Quezon, has, as the Filipino name suggests, white sands and clear blue waters ideal for swimming. It's one of Quezon's finer beaches made even more interesting by a cave called Kwebang Lampas at the edge of the beach cove. You can walk on rocks to get inside the cave or swim your way to the entrance. The waters inside the cave is clear and shallow, a perfect hideaway. Puting Buhangin is open to visitors every day, but it’s best to visit on weekdays when there are less people angling for the best spot on the shore. A campsite is set up for those who want to stay overnight, and tents available for rent. There are a few convenience stores for bare necessities like water and coal for cooking, plus a basic shower area. Entrance fee is about P80 (US$1.65) for day trips and P160 for overnight stays.

 

People just come and go, that's life. ???? #Yicam #Yiphotography #xiaomiyi

A photo posted by Charisse (@charisse.explorer) on


How to get there
Ride a JAC Liner bus from the Kamias terminal on the corner of Mapagmahal St. and EDSA to the Lucena Grand Central Terminal in Quezon. From here, you can catch mini-buses going to Padre Burgos, where you can hop on a tricycle to the port for boats going to Puting Buhangin.

2 Borawan, Padre Burgos

 

B O R A W A N ???? #Borawan #Quezon #Province #ItsMoreFunInThePhilippines #Stoked #Nikon #D5000 #35MM #TravelPH #Life

A photo posted by John Michael Andal (@juanmichaelfilms) on


Quezon tourism head Jun Gay recommends Borawan in Padre Burgos as one of his top beaches in the area. The beach is named after Boracay and Palawan. Its rock formations are reminiscent of Palawan's limestone rocks, and like Boracay's White Beach, it is fringed with white sand, though not quite as fine. It's a pleasant place for swimming and there are cottages and tents available for rent with basic showers and toilets. Convenience stores sell the essentials, but it's best to bring your own food and water. Avoid the weekend crowds to better enjoy the beach. Entrance fee is P150 per person for a day trip.


How to get there
Follow the same direction as Puting Buhangin. Instead of directing the boatmen to Puting Buhangin in Pagbilao, tell them to take you to Borawan.

Book a trip to Borawan and other beach destinations at Phil Booking, +63921 380 4036, +63926 024 7050.

3 Alibijaban Island, San Andres

Go deeper into the province with a visit to Alibijaban, an island located some 300km from Metro Manila. Life is simple here with no commercial establishments, but the locals are warm and hospitable. The sand is coarse but clean, perfect for your Instagram snapshots. Mornings are best for swimming before the low tide sets in. Bring your own gear with you to snorkel and explore the mangrove area as there are no equipment rentals on the island. Camping is allowed and there are no entrance fees. Also pack food and drinking water to stay the night.


How to get there
Ride a Superlines Transportation Co. bus from the Cubao terminal along EDSA to San Andres, Quezon. From the terminal in San Andres, ride a tricycle to the port where outrigger boats are available for hire to take you to Alibijaban Island. Boat ride is about 20 minutes.

4 Lingayan Cove, Jomalig Island

Jomalig Island, west of the Pacific Ocean, is part of the Polilio Group of Islands, located in the same area as Balesin Island resort, a luxury membership-only club. The island is fringed by golden sand and clear waters. Lingayan Cove, near the island's main beach of Salibungot where most visitors pitch tent to camp overnight, is a golden sand beach between two rock boulders, perfect for swimming. You can get a sweeping view of the entire cove by climbing the rocks. Travel to Jomalig Island is quite long with three hours on land to Real and another six hours at sea. 
For more information on Jomalig, contact tourism office at +63929 957 3655.

How to get there
From the terminal in Legarda, Manila, hop on a Raymond Transportation bus headed to Infanta, Real. Travel time is roughly three hours. Get off at Ungos Port in Real, Quezon, where you can ride a public boat bound for Jomalig Island's Talisoy port, six hours away. Tricycles and habal-habals (motorbikes) are the common form of public transport.

5 Salibungot Beach, Jomalig Island
Salibungot Beach by @jemseal, The Hidden Jem blog

Salibungot Beach in Sitio Burungawan is the most popular stop in the faraway Jomalig Island and the chosen campsite of many visitors. A long stretch of fine, golden sand, agoho trees and the raw beauty of the open Pacific Ocean create a paradise in this Quezon isle. While swimming is tempting, the waves can be high and the waters deep so tourists need to be cautious about venturing into the ocean. The thicket of agoho trees offer a pleasant shade for tents and it's not uncommon for tourists to find themselves the only people around. 

How to get there
Same as Lingayan Cove.

6 Yang-In sand bar, Cagbalete Island, Mauban

 

"Vast"

A photo posted by Marvin James F. Royales (@sturoyales) on


Cagbalete Island, fringed by fine white sand and crystal clear waters, has as its star attraction Yang-In sand bar which you can get to by a native outrigger boat. Low tide allows tourists to walk along the vast expanse of dazzlingly white and milky shore, and explore the mangrove forest that's thriving in this part of the island. During high tide, boatmen say the area resembles a giant swimming pool with transparently clear waters that visitors can swim lazily in. There are a few cottages for rent by the mangroves; tourists can even stay overnight here, if they are brave enough to spend the night in isolation without electricity and surrounded by water.

 

Island Crew ???????????? Got the sandbar all to ourselves ????

A photo posted by Joanna Salayo (@_joannacs) on


How to get there
From the JAC Liner terminal in Kamias, Cubao, hop on a bus going straight to Mauban, Quezon. Book a ticket in advance at Biyaheroes. From the JAC Liner bus terminal in Mauban, take a tricycle to the tourism office for registration, then simply walk to the Mauban port where the public boat departs for Cagbalete Island daily at 9 or 10 a.m. Transportation within the island is limited, motorcycles are rare and most people simply walk. To get to the Yang-In sand bar, one would have to rent an outrigger boat at the Cagbalete port or the resort. The Yang-In sand bar is usually included in tours with some snorkeling and a stop at the Bonsai Island.

Book a room at Pansacola Beach Resort, +63917 546 5901. Accommodations start at P1,500, air-conditioned rooms at P3,500. Pansacola can arrange tours around Cagbalete Island, including the Yang-In sand bar.

Tipid Lakbay also offers tours to Cagbalete Island. Call +63917 542 9837.

7 Bato Beach in Polillo

Polillo's Bato Beach has crystalline waters and is almost always empty, perfect for those seeking privacy and quiet. The brown-tinted sandy beach has rocks strewn on the shores and has the ruins of an unfinisted port, often used as backdrop by snap happy beach goers. Camping is allowed on the beach.


How to get there
Ride the Raymond Transportation bus at their terminal in Legarda, Manila to Ungos Port in Real, Quezon. From there, board a boat to Polillo port. The boat ride can take up to three hours. In Polillio, take a habal-habal to Bato Beach.

8 Balugbog Baboy, Pagbilao

Locals call it Balugbog Baboy, but tourists more familiar with the province would probably recognize this destination as the Bilaran sand bar. Just less than 10 kilometers off the coast of Pagbilao, this is one of the stops in island hopping trips around Pagbilao, Quezon. Mornings are the best time to visit the fine off-white sand bar, because it gets submerged underwater later in the day as high tide sets in.


How to get there
Ride a JAC Liner bus from the Kamias terminal on the corner of Mapagmahal St. and EDSA to the Lucena Grand Central Terminal. Here, there are vans and jeepneys going to Pagbilao. In Pagbilao, hail a tricycle to take you to the port and hire a boat for Balugbog Baboy. The sand bar is also a frequent stop in tours that include Puting Buhangin/Kwebang Lampas and Borawan.

9 White Beach in Patnanungan

 

My backyard view for the last five days.

A photo posted by Jem (@jemseal) on


Patnanungan is another municipality in Quezon that can be accessed off the coast of Infanta, Real. Blessed with a number of beaches, the island’s own version of the White Beach is ultimately the highlight of a Patnanungan vacation with its white strip of beach and serene waters.

How to get there
Ride the Raymond Transportation bus at the terminal in Legarda, Manila to Ungos Port in Real, Quezon. From there, board a boat to Patnanungan, where a habal-habal can take you to White Beach.

10 Tignoan Beach, Real


Tignoan in Real, Quezon attracts surfers and outdoor enthusiasts. The beach has a rocky seabed and perfect surfing waves. Non surfers can enjoy river tubing, rafting and exploring nearby caves and waterfalls. The PaRK (Pacific Recreation Kamp) offers many of these activities, plus cottages and tents for rent. Contact the resort at +63920 924 6102.


How to get there
Ride a bus or van at the Raymond Transportation bus terminal in Legarda, Manila headed to Infanta, Real. Tell the driver to drop you off at The PaRK, just after the Tignoan bridge.

About our insiders
Information on our top 10 beaches were sourced from Jun Gay, the tourism head of Quezon province, and Stella Marie M. Salvacion who manages My Journey Travel & Tours, based in Lucena, Quezon.

Read about experts' top 10 beaches in the Phillippines.

Cover photo is by @jemseal of The Hidden Jem blog.

Published October 2016