Dingalan, Aurora: A Newfound Paradise

Summer of 2016 is at its peak when a new destination emerged from the east. A town has been the hot topic in social media and even featured in “Biyahe ni Drew” – Dingalan, Aurora. This newfound paradise boasts a breathtaking view of grassland and seas; hence called ‘Batanes of the East’.

How To Get There

Start the engine (motor roaring). Time check. A quarter before midnight. Travel time will take 4 – 5 hours average for private cars from Manila to Dingalan, Aurora. It was a night drive, dose of anti-sleep and non-drowse food and drinks are necessary. We took the SCTEX-NLEX route with Google Map on standby in case we need it. Be extra careful, always ask the locals if in doubt.

If you choose to commute, take the 5 Star Bus for P185 fare from Cubao to Cabanatuan Central Transport then ride a van to Dingalan for P100 fare. Take note that the van will only leave once all seats are taken. Yes “punuan”. Upon arrival to Dingalan Town Proper, take a tricycle to Feeder Port located at Brgy. Paltic. Fare would be P20 per pax. And then you’re there! Welcome travel buddies, you arrived safe and sound!

We arrived at 4:20am in Feeder Port and decided to take a nap before starting the highlights of the trip. At around 5am, we wandered around, greeted the locals and asked a few questions about the place. The rain poured and we opted to stay and wait for the sun. And we were amazed and thankful we did, as the rainbow started to appear. Stunning and beautiful. It was a warm welcome, like a prize given to us for waiting. It’s actually a double rainbow and double the fun!

Double rainbow seen from the Feeder Port.

We arranged for a boat tour for P700, inclusive of trips to Dingalan Lighthouse and White Beach plus a sidetrip to Lamao Caves. Lamao caves may not be accessible at times when waves are too rough to sail. So do hope and pray that the weather is favorable.

The short boat ride from the Feeder Port will take more or less 30 minutes.

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The Lighthouse

The locals are very friendly. They greeted us right away when nearing the shore. We were actually the second group who arrived that day. The first were the couple we saw from the port and left at 5:00 am. They might have witnessed the sunrise then. We’re good with the rainbows anyways (just a little envious though)

They offered us shelter to stay, snacks and even coffee. We took the offer but for “kubo” only since the rain started again. It’s time to prepare. Applied some sunscreen and wore skin shields. (sleeves). We managed to secure our guide going to the lighthouse for P100. It took us 20 – 30 minutes. Good thing, the couple was on their way back that means we have the Lighthouse all to ourselves!

Halfway there. Look! the lighthouse!
Halfway there. Look! the lighthouse!
The Lighthouse
The Lighthouse

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Enjoying the view from the lighthouse. Breathtaking!
Enjoying the view from the lighthouse.

There was no mistake. Truly, the place is astounding. You will wish you can just stay there and watch the sceneries.

The horizons…

The birds flying in broad blue sky…

The boat a size of an ant from atop…

The waves crashing against the rocks…

The wind whispering…

And the sun lighting up, making every detail vivid and clear, picture-perfect.

We did not want our guide waiting so we decided to leave with hearts full of satisfaction and memories. L-N-T. Leave No Trace. Be responsible enough not to stand on the top of the module panel. Bring your trash with you. Be a visitor not a destroyer.

The White Beach is blessed with rocky shore and you may want to dip in after a tiring day treks. Freshen up and reenergized on its cold water. Play and build rocks statuettes at your heart’s content. Rest on their nipa huts and sip some buko juice.

After half an hour, we called out our “bangkeros” to pick us up and we headed back to Feeder port. It was lunch time so we walked around to find some food. We ate at Shalom Restobar. Their meals are affordable and they have seafood, meat, pancit and other short orders to choose from.

Shalom Restobar

Tanawan Falls

The day is still long and we seek for more. There is a waterfalls near the place about 30 – 45 – minute drive. No time to waste, we went right away. The road is even more tempting as you see the view of the sea and Cordillera mountains.

We even saw a dino along the way!

Scary!
Scary!

On our way to Tanawan Falls, the rain mysteriously created an illusion over the mountains.

A wooden bridge that complements the rocks and greens.

Wooden bridge
Wooden bridge
Tanawan Falls
Tanawan Falls

The water is freezing! You would need to have courage to swim. Of course we did! We bathed, plunged ourselves in and enjoyed the water as if it’s our first time. We brought some cookies and snack and stayed there to re-boost. There are no decent restrooms in the place but we managed to change clothes in an abandoned restroom. There were some visitors and local students at that time so we didn’t stay for long.

Tanawan View Deck

We dropped by the view deck since it is just along the highway.

View Deck
View Deck

To end the wonderful adventure, a beautiful sunset from a nearby farm.

The trip might have been tiresome but the experience and beauty of nature that you will see is more than enough. Unparalleled!

To live your life with adventures. To meet other people and share their food and culture. To capture the glimpse of heaven on earth. To travel around and feel the excitement of discoveries with your own eyes. And to be thankful for the chances of reaching these destinations. These are the purpose we bear as we wander to places wherever our feet bring us.

Expenses

Boat ride to White Beach     – P700

Guide to the lighthouse        – P100

Lunch (good for 2 persons) – P141

Total Expenses for 2 not including transpo  – P941

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9 Comments

    1. Hi Marvin,

      We parked our car in Feeder Port, the same place where you can secure a boat going to White Beach.

    1. Hi Raquel,

      You may try to reach Kuya Marvin, our boatman during our trip.

      Name: Kuya Marvin
      Contact Number: 09502844751

  1. Hi! Do you have any suggestions on cheap lodging / hotel around the area? Is less than 1k per night feasible? Thanks! More powers!

    1. Hi Diane,

      You can check Fil Dane Inn or Juniban Beach Resort. We actually do not know the rates since we opted for a day tour during our visit in the place. Hope it somehow helps you decide.

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