April 18-20, 2016
Wow bakasyon grande! Nagtarabaho ka pa ba? Puro ka bakasyon ah! Oh, not really. I just managed to take a leave from work and have some extra money to have a break. I was just invited by my friend’s partner and her friends to join them on a trip to La Union. So, there were two couples and I am the only single and therefore, I was the fifth wheel of the group. I don’t know what we’ll do in La Union, I just accepted their invitation to come with them. Hahaha!
We met at Chowking in front of Trinoma early in the morning, I guess it was around 6am. We rented a van for P700 each x5 of us. We had our breakfast first before we proceed to our destination. The travel is about 4 to 5 hours by van or 6 to 7 hours by bus. Bus fare from Cubao to San Juan, La Union is P603 via Partas. You can get 20% discount if you’re a student, PWD, or senior citizen.
Sebay Surf Central
We checked-in at Sebay Surf Central for 2 nights. We paid P1,000 each of us or P5,000 for the room for 2 nights. You can also check agoda.com for cheaper rooms.
We settled ourselves in the room and had our lunch at their restaurant. A good meal for 1 would cost P150-200. It’s of course kind of pricey, you can bring your own food so you can save.
We spent the afternoon swimming, the waves of the beach were not that huge that time. Huge waves for surfing are usually in the morning if it is not surfing season. The sand is light grey and fine. It is the type of sand that absorbs heat. You wouldn’t want to walk bare-footed on the sand during peak hours of the sun.
Most people who get to the place are surfers, since the beach is not really for those who just want to swim because the sea could get rough and sometimes people are advised not to swim.
We had our dinner at famous Tagpuan, a relatively cheaper restaurant with good food, though you need to eat outside the street.
The food would cost around P50-150 for 1 person. There are other restaurants beside it where they offer fruit shakes and other kinds of meal.
Sunset at Urbiztondo
There are sari-sari stores around the area where you can buy cheaper beer or other alcoholic beverages, compared to hotel price, for you bonding moments. We met a guide that night that offered us a tour to Tangadan Falls in San Gabriel, La Union for P500. You must include this in your itinerary. *Unfortunately his contact number is not working anymore.
San Juan Surf Resort
We woke up sort of late, it was already 7:30am when we had our breakfast to the nearby resort, the San Juan Surf Resort. I had corned beef and egg with rice plus free orange juice for P180-250. And wait there’s more! They have free WiFi for their guests! It’s Facebook time!
We were picked up by our guide at Sebay, and I had to ride his scooter while the four of them rode the tricycle. Siyempre dun ako kay manong guide kasi ako lang walang partner *rolls eyes*, may pagkabitter lang. Hahaha! The travel time from San Juan to San Gabriel is around an hour. Yes, it’s that far from San Juan and there’s no traffic.
Trekking to Tangadan Falls
From our drop-off point in San Gabriel, we need to trek at around 2 to 3 hours going to Tangadan Falls. We took the trail at around 2 1/2 hours. It was almost noon time when we reached the falls. So imagine the suffering we need to endure because of the heat of the sun just to get there.
I could say that the trek is sulit even if it’s that far and mainit. Aside from being majestic, you can jump from the top of the falls if you’re a thrill seeker (I was not in the mood). Kahit na nag-ilang beses ako tumalon sa Canyoneering sa Cebu. I cannot anymore. Hahaha!
My friend, Mike tried it and he has successfully jumped off of the falls without sustaining any injury. The water is really cold and chilling after soaking for a while even during noon time. The cold water has also helped us be relieved from the heat exhaustion due to trekking. You can rent a life jacket for P20, if you’re not a good swimmer because the water is deep. Where did the renters come from? I don’t know too. Maybe there’s a nearby community where they store the life jackets.
Going back in the afternoon from the falls is painful due to the scorching heat of the sun and long trail of walking we need to endure again. And there are no ways to relieve the heat. Wala kang maliliguan eh, you have no choice. We decided to go the Floatsam & Jetsam Hostel to have our late lunch but unfortunately it was closed.
The five of us had to ride the tricycle from Floatsam & Jetsam to Sebay. Since we cannot all fit inside, I need to be the topload and my new friend Chris was a backload. Hello probinsya! It was fun though.
We just had our late lunch and early dinner at Surf Shack just near Sebay. It’s quite expensive, the ambiance is good but not fantastic. There are photos of surfers you can take a look at while waiting for your meal.
I had a Quesadilla, the food costs around P200-300 per meal. I wasn’t that full, ang kaunti kasi. Huhuhu! We had our booze that night from our friendly neighbor sari-sari store and pulutan slash dinner from the Sebay Restaurant.
The next day, the waves are up. We had our breakfast at our nearby restaurant. Hello, expensiveness! JK. Hahaha! I decided that day that I would try surfing. It costs P400 for 30 minutes with surfboard and instructor. I gave my instructor P100 for tip. I know it’s small, I’m on a budget you know. Hahaha!
The instructor will give you first lectures on the beach on what to do and not to do during surfing. Let’s be professional, don’t get distracted whatever you see. ✌️
I had fun surfing. The first trials were difficult getting my balance. I had fallen several times after standing up, then try to paddle back again to my surf spot, then stumble again while the waves crash me and tumble underwater while I evade my surfboard that’s attached to my ankle. Yeah, it is sort of dangerous lalo na kung tanga ka. Hahaha! Mej masakit kapag tinamaan ka ng board kahit may foam siya. So, may pagkatanga pala ako.
It was very fulfilling when I finally achieved the right position on the board and reach the end of the waves standing up. It was just really tiring and it gave me a lot of muscle pain after the lesson. Achievement unlocked! *Stars popping out of your screen*
Floatsam and Jetsam
We checked out at 12nn just like other hotels and inns. We had our lunch at Floatsam & Jetsam Hostel which was open that day.
The ambiance is nice for relaxation, they have several bean bags where you can lie down, take a nap for a while, or enjoy the beautiful scenery of the place.
I had carbonara which costs P270, it’s good enough to make me full. However, it’s still pricey for me. Food costs P130-320 for a meal. Tapos service water para tipid. Hahaha!
Back to Cubao
After our lunch, we headed to the bus terminal of San Fernando. You can ride a jeep along the highway of Urbiztondo, San Juan going to Partas Terminal, San Fernando City for P14. You ask the jeepney driver to drop you off near it because you still need to walk a little to reach the bus terminal. The bus going to Cubao is P410 with discount as mentioned above.
|Transport (QC to San Juan, La Union)||483.00||603.00||700.00|
|Accommodation P500/night x2||1,000.00||1,000.00||1,000.00|
|Lunch at Sebay||150.00 to 200.00|
|Dinner at Tagpuan||50.00 to 150.00|
|Breakfast at San Juan Surf Resort||180.00 to 250.00|
|Travel guide to Tangadan Falls||100.00||100.00||100.00|
|Surf Shack late lunch||200.00 to 300.00|
|Breakfast at Sebay||150.00 to 200.00|
|Surfing Lessons (optional)||400.00||400.00|
|Lunch at Floatsam & Jetsam||150.00||270.00||320.00|
|Jeep (San Juan to San Fernando)||12.00||14.00||14.00|
|Bus (San Fernando to Cubao)||328.00||410.00||410.00|