Travel Guide: Hundred Islands National Park (Alaminos)
The most popular tourist spot in Pangasinan, Hundred Islands National Park is a group of islands in Lingayen Gulf, Alaminos City. It is made up of 123 islands and islets (124 on low tide), believed to be formed more than two million years ago.
Only five hours away from Manila, Hundred Islands is a perfect retreat from the busy city life. A cheap and fun way to experience the tropical Philippines, be it for a day tour, camping trip or overnight accommodation on any three developed islands – Quezon, Governor’s and Children’s Islands.
With more than a hundred islands to choose from, that harbor white sand beaches, caves, limestone rocks and cliffs and rich marine life, Hundred Islands guarantees a well worth visit.
How to Get There
Alaminos City is the gateway to the Hundred Islands National Park. It is five hours by public bus from Manila. Victory Liner, Dagupan Bus, Five Star Bus and Philippine Rabbit have daily trips to Alaminos City. Aircon bus fare as of June 2010 is at approximately P350.00 one-way Manila to Alaminos, while ordinary (non-aircon) bus fare is around P250.
From Alaminos City proper, ride a tricycle going to Barangay Lucap, this is where the Tourism Information Center is located and the jump-off point to the Hundred Isles. Tricycle rate is at P60-P80 per ride that can fit three people.
The tourism office set standard boat rates to the park from Barangay Lucap (as of April 2012):
- Day Tour (With P20. entrance fee per head)
Small Boat (1 to 5 persons) – P800
Medium Boat (6 to 10 persons) – P1000
Big Boat (11 to 15 persons) – P1100
- Overnight (With P40. entrance fee per head)
Small Boat (1 to 5 persons) – P1400
Medium Boat (6 to 10 persons) – P1800
Big Boat (11 to 15 persons) – P2000
Where to Stay
Quezon, Governor’s and Children’s Islands have cottages and rooms that can be rented for those who want to stay indoor. Rates and packages are posted on their website – http://www.hundredislands.ph. For inquiries, booking and reservation, please contact the Tourism Office at (75)551 -2145 or (75)551- 2505 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meanwhile, campers can choose from any of the islands allowed for camping.
- Island hopping and boating
- Beach bumming
- Jump to the water from the 20-feet high cave in Marcos Island
- Trek to the peak of the cliff in Governor’s Islands to see the unobstructed view of the park
- Dive or snorkel to see the giant clams, coral areas and variety of tropical fishes
- Sunset/sunrise watching
- Visit the beaches of the neighboring towns – Bolinao, Tondol and Dasol (Culebra and Tambobong)
- Drop by at Our Lady of Manaoag Church considered by Catholic as a miraculous church
- The best time to go here is from November to April or during dry months
- Bring your own mask and snorkel set, rental is at P100 a day
- The ideal time to leave Manila is at 12 midnight to reach Barangay Lucap by 6AM and to start island hopping early