The last time I ever attempted to visit Puerto Galera was over 20 years ago, that time you might think it has a potential and in years to come it'll be one of the Philippines' main attraction. I had mixed feelings about the place but decided to give it a go. The trip from Manila was a breeze, from the SLEX to the Star Tollway, we ended up at the Batangas Port (around 180 km from Makati) in an hour and a half. The best way to go is the Montenegro Lines that leaves at 8am daily. For first timers, it'll be confusing since each time you ask around, they give different directions. The best way is after you pay the terminal fee, is to head on to the ship. You pay the fee onboard. The trip is 2hours and you arrive at Balatero Port, very conveniently located near the beach area. Don't expect too much from the ship, they are old and have seen better days. Seeing the white beach afar from the winding road, you'd think it looks inviting. First of all, getting to the beach is like finding a hole on a wall; there are tiny lanes (you'd think they were private driveways) that lead to the beach. Finally you get there and your anticipation is turned to disgust. The have built a 5-foot platform about 4 meters away from the water along the beach that house eateries and pubs. The platform has no rails, and you wonder how people who had a few drinks could manage to not fall off. The preview of the Roll-on-roll-off ship should have given us a sign of what to expect. It might be still a destination for those who would like to dive and explore the sea and find a clean place to sleep, but for those seeking for rest and recreation at the beach front, you've come to the wrong place.
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