Iridescent underwater landscapes, pristine mountain rainforests, romantic coves and pearly beaches: Mindoro is a protected paradise island, the likes of which are few on Earth. It is also a place of pilgrimage for divers from all over the world: the phenomenal abundance of species of corals, fish and large marine mammals in the glass-clear ocean guarantees an unforgettable adventure. The beauty on land is no less impressive.
Mindoro lies 150 kilometers from Manila and is adjacent to the islands of Luzon in the northeast and Palawan in the southwest. The crescent-shaped island is traversed by an imposing mountain range, where on the slopes and in the river valleys, misty forests full of tropical treasures majestically rise from the darkness: centuries-old trees, overgrown with numerous epiphytes, creepers and orchids, border the mysterious jungle paths leading to the mountain peaks. Also, the local beaches are like animated pictures from books. White and golden sand, clear blue water and coconut palms – this is the recipe for a romantic and relaxing holiday.
Along with secluded lost coves, there are lively beach promenades with gourmet restaurants and cozy cafes. After sunset, you will be able to enjoy freshly caught seafood and count shooting stars under the open sky. The island is divided into two provinces, named according to their location – Western (Occidental) and Eastern (Oriental) Mindoro.
East Mindoro The north and east of the island belong to the province of East Mindoro and are considered one of the most beautiful natural landscapes in the Philippines. Countless lonely beaches – a delicate golden hue or snow-white, as if from powdered sugar – are located along both coasts. Between them are cities slumbering in the sun, such as Puerto Galera and the provincial capital of Calapan. The mountainous, rainforest-covered terrain around the towns is riddled with numerous rivers and is ideal for hikers. Here, in small villages, representatives of the Mangian mountain tribe live.
The coastal city of Puerto Galera is located in one of the most beautiful harbors on the planet. Puerto Galera – the pearl of Mindoro, it is famous for its coral reefs rich in marine life. This enchanting coastal area has been protected by UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Program since 1974. Both beginners and professional divers are waiting for an exciting journey into the world of underwater flora and fauna.
Approximately 15 kilometers from Puerto Galera are the waterfalls of Tamarao, falling from a height of 129 meters. Several multi-stage cascades descend from moss-covered rocks to a small lake at the foot, which is great for swimming.
The beaches around Puerto Galera have long ceased to be the secret routes of Philippine experts. Today, these fabulous bays with palm-lined and soft sandy beaches attract many travelers. Numerous hotels, cottages, restaurants and bars have also opened here in recent years.
Located in a lively area to the northeast of Puerto Galera, this beach is ideal for swimming, snorkeling and diving. In addition, as the sun sets, Sabang becomes a favorite meeting place for both locals and travelers: the local cafes, restaurants and bars are popular seven days a week. You can get to Sabang Beach from Puerto Galera in 15 minutes, by jeepney or outrigger canoe.
Small beach La Laguna
Also deservedly popular is Small La Laguna Beach, directly adjacent to Sabang Beach. It is great for snorkeling. In the evenings, the whole beach turns into one big party, a little less in scope than on the neighboring beach.
Great beach of La Laguna
Big La Laguna Beach is also a favorite spot for snorkelers thanks to the spectacular coral reef that lies right in front of it. The beach, bordering a charming bay, adjoins the small beach of La Laguna on the western side. The sand here is shining white.
Located six kilometers from Puerto Galera, White Beach is a place that sun worshipers will love. The wide, fine sandy beach is ideal for relaxing and sunbathing. And, of course, there is also the opportunity to spend the passing day sitting in a cozy beach bar or an exquisite fish restaurant. Those who are looking for peace and solitude will find them in small romantic bays around the White Beach.
Excursions to the underwater kingdom
Mindoro Island is a place of pilgrimage for divers from all over the world, and Puerto Galera is one of the favorite starting points for excursions to the rich underwater world. There are many dive schools and equipment stores, most
of them – in Sabang. Experienced instructors from around the world accompany beginners and pros on exciting tours to the fabulous coral reefs of Puerto Galera. The equipment here also meets international standards, which ensures the safety of diving.
In Puerto Galera, you can also book a multi-day expedition to Reef Apo, one of the most attractive underwater landscapes on the planet. This spectacular 15,800-hectare reef reserve lies between the western coast of Mindoro and the northern tip of the Palawan region. Here, countless species of fish, giant bivalves, sea turtles, sharks, mesmerizing manta rays and stingrays leave even the most experienced sport divers in awe. On the
in the southwest of the huge Apo Reef, which partially rises above the water surface at low tide, is the island of Apo itself. Its fringing reef also impresses with a variety of marine life and bizarre corals. This reserve is also known for its white sandy beaches and large bird colonies. In addition to firms from Puerto Galera, excursions to Apo Reef are also offered by dive schools on the west coast, for example, in San Jose.
Mindoro Occidental is the western province of Mindoro. A coastline full of beautiful scenery, impressive mountain landscapes, small lakes and pristine river valleys make this area a magnet for travelers. Small coastal islands, such as the enchanted island of Pandan, fringed with white beaches and hidden coves, attract beach lovers here. Well, for fans of sports diving and snorkelers, the waters near Western Mindoro have reserved spectacular coral reefs.
Mamburao. Lying in the waters of the South China Sea at the mouth of the Mamburao River, the eponymous place in the north of the west coast is the capital of the province. There is a lively fish market where you can buy freshly caught seafood. The small coves and secluded beaches of the surrounding area are favorite places for country walks.
Lubang island. Lubang is located north of Mindoro Island. On the western side, near the town of Tagbak, there is a beautiful five-kilometer sandy beach, bordered by coconut palms.
Cabra Island. Kabra is located southwest of Lubang Island. The sloping shores of this island are strewn with golden sand, on the east coast there are spectacular rocks and cliffs. In addition to beach lovers who can really relax here, this island is popular with anglers.