I thought that I would never be able to travel this year because of my new job which does not provide leave credits until my first year in the institution. I think if there’s a will, there’s always a way. I just maximized my time and made use of my available double off, which worked! I may become a “weekend” warrior except that my weekends don’t usually fall on Saturdays nor on Sundays. Maybe I should call myself double-off warrior which suits better to my status.
I just decided to have my trip days before my off; I had no plans at all. I just did a quick search of Masasa and there intantly, I decided to go there. All I did was to save my Google searches regarding Masasa Beach DIY travel and reread it right there on the day of my trip. I just started searching for my accommodation a day before my travel to Masasa. It’s quite risky, because I might end up with no place to stay or might spend too much for an accommodation. Luckily it was a weekday when I went there and there were only few travelers during those times and it wasn’t difficult to book one. So from my 10pm to 6am shift, I headed straight to Masasa while I’m still in my uniform and I don’t care.
How to Get There from Manila?
There are 3 bus terminals you can choose from going to Batangas Grand Terminal, whichever is the nearest or most convenient terminal for you. I had to take Uber pool going to Buendia because I am not sure how to get there and I wanted to take a nap while in transit. Buendia was nearest from my work, and I rode a Ceres bus which was having its illegal terminal beside the Jac Liner Terminal in Buendia. I just bought breakfast from McDo near the terminal and ate it on the bus.
- ₱165 from Cubao (EDSA-Kamuning), Quezon City
- ₱157 from Buendia, Pasay City
- ₱127 from South Station Alabang
It would take you around 1.5 to 3 hours of travel time from Metro Manila to Batangas City depending on the time of the day you started your trip.
From Batangas Grand Terminal, you need to ride a jeepney going to Mabini which costs ₱40. You will be alighted right to the port of Anilao going to Tingloy, the island of Masasa Beach. The jeepney travel would take you around 40 to 50 minutes to reach Anilao port.
At the Anilao Port, you need to pay the environmental fee which costs ₱30. There is a market in the area where you can buy meat products, canned goods, rice, junk food, and other snacks that you can bring to Masasa Beach. You need to ride a boat from Anilao to Tingloy. The public boat fare costs ₱80 per person which leaves as early as 7am and as late as 4:30pm. Travel time by boat would take you around 45 to 50 minutes and is always on time since there’s no traffic on the sea. You may also rent a boat from Anilao to Tingloy which costs ₱1,500 to 2,500 for 10 to 20 people depending on its size. This is a good idea if you miss the last trip of public boat or if you’re too early for the first trip. Of course it would be really costly if you’re a solo traveler like me, so be sure to be at the port on time so as not be left by the public boat.
Where to Stay?
I was able to book an accommodation at Ma’am Mina’s transient house. It’s just walking distance from Tingloy port. A night costs ₱700 for 1-2 persons or ₱300 for 3 in a room. But Ma’am Mina gave me a discount, which she gave me the room for a night for only ₱500 since I am only alone and it’s on a weekday.
For room bookings, you can contact Ate Maricel at 09566634428. They were my family during my 2-day stay at Tingloy. I lost my wallet during my snorkeling and they treated me well. They even provided me free meals which was not included in my payment. For your snorkeling and island hopping needs, you can contact Mark at 09398929442 or at 09565119213. I guarantee you that they are they best people to go, but please be good to them as well.
How to go to Ma’am Mina’s transient house, from the arch of Tingloy where the boat docks, you just go straight until you see the grotto of the Virgin Mary then you turn right. You’ll walk until you reach the small bridge and Baby’s Eatery and then turn left. You’ll see a mini stage and Barangay 13 sign, behind the stage there’s a smaller bridge and you can ask where the house of Ma’am Mina is. It is the area where there is data signal to connect to your social media. There is also signal near the beach but it is limited to call and text and sometimes there’s data signal for Globe subscribers if you’re at the beach.
From the port or from Ma’am Mina’s house, you need to ride a tricycle to Masasa Beach and then you need to walk downhill going to the beach because there is limited access for the tricycle. It’s about 5 minute walk to the beach.
- ₱60 for 1 passenger
- ₱30 each for 2 passengers
- ₱20 each for 3 passengers
- ₱15 each for 4 passengers
Masasa Beach may not be comparable to Boaracay, Palawan, nor to Panglao but it is very near the metropolis and decent enough to get away from our very busy schedule from work. The beach has a short stretch of cream to gray and fine to rocky sand with pristine turquoise water that’s very attractive to go swimming. It is best to go to Masasa on weekends because of its size, it can easily get crowded on weekends.
Masasa Beach can be picturesque as it can be, you just need to find the right spot and voila! It is just difficult to get your photos when you’re alone. But you can just use your socializing skills and ask random strangers to take your photos. Everyone is just willing to help you out in the island to survive and enjoy the moment.
I think they were planning to put an inflatable playground similar to what have been put-up in other beaches. Unfortunately it wasn’t put-up yet when I was there because it was on a weekday and there are only few people when I got there. It’s business of course, they wanted to attract a lot of people for them to earn more and return their investment.
My Misadventure and Great Adventure
I joined snorkeling together with other girls from Manila which costs us ₱100 each. It was a fun 30 minute kind of snorkeling and we’re dragged by the boat to save our energy from swimming. It is a lazy kind of snorkeling but still fun because of the rich and diverse kind of corals and fish that we’re able to see. It is still not exempted from human trash though at some parts and hopefully they are removed from the sea as soon as possible.
Little did I know that my wallet was thrown out of the sea. I am not sure whether my wallet was still in my pocket when I jumped off the boat or my wallet joined my GoPro when I tried to pull it out from the boat. We just discovered that my wallet was missing when we’re already back at the shore. It was a mini heart attack because all of my money was there and I have no money left to back to Manila. The boatman even pitied me and did not charge us for the snorkeling and even told Zel and Yel to just give me their payment instead to him in replacement for my lost wallet; which I did not accept because those were not meant for me.
I immediately called my mother to borrow money so I can pay my dues and have fare to go home. Mark tried to dive under the sea to find my wallet but he was unsuccessful. He did it even without expecting anything in return, I also have nothing to give him anyway. My first thought after losing my wallet was to ask my parents to deposit the money through the ATM of Ma’am Mina, but there are no ATMs in the island so it’s not an option. Luckily there’s a Palawan Pawnshop for money transfer in the island but since I also lost all my valid IDs, it cannot be named after me. The money was sent under the name of Ate Maricel which we can only get the next day. Ate Maricel lend me ₱100 so I can pay for the tricycle when I go back to the house, the went back ahead of me. Zel and Yel invited me to stay by the beach while they prepare for dinner which they also invited me. I was so overwhelmed with the kind gestures of the strangers I met in the island. I never thought that my misfortune would turn into something really pleasant after all. I have returned my trust back to humanity. It is when you lost everything that you will see the beauty in mankind.
I am not really alone when I travel solo, I get to know more people and increase the circle of my friends. It has taught to me to socialize and discover new things from strangers.
I love sunsets by the beach, it calms and it relaxes me. It’s like a reminder that this day is about to end but you’re bound to see one of the most beautiful things here on Earth. In reality, I rarely see the sunrise because I am not a morning person. Hahaha!
After the free dinner served my Zel and Yel, we want back at the beach and drank few bottles of beer while making chika of our lives. It was a great night kahit nawalan ako ng pera, may mga strangers na nilibre ako. Hahaha! Kapal ng mukha ko pero wala kasi akong choice. Hopefully we can match our schedule so I can tour them around Marikina to pay them back. I was also lucky that night eventhough there were no more tricycles available that night, Ate Maricel went back at the beach to pick her child up and she went back to me so I can have a company going back to house. Ate Maricel and I decided to walk while making chika din with our lives. It was one of the most fulfilling night of my life.
The next day, our first agenda is to get the money from Palawan Pawnshop. It was time consuming because there is no electricity in Tingloy every morning (12am to 12nn) and the agents manually get the code from the receiver and send them to Anilao Branch to verify via text. After we got the money, I immediately pay for my accommodation and return the ₱100 I borrowed from Ate Maricel. I also went back to Masasa to maximize my stay and enjoy the last hours of my stay.
Be sure to be at the port before 2:30pm to be sure that you will not be left out in the island by the last boat that will travel back to Anilao.
Back in Anilao Port, you need to ride a jeepney back to Batangas Grand Terminal that costs another ₱40. If you’re going back to Cubao, I suggest that you ride the Gold Star because of its premium feel and service for only ₱165, you also get free WiFi, free movie showing, and free charger under your seats, pwedeng-pwede sa maarte.
Update regarding my lost wallet
As of 23-Mar-18
Someone contacted me thru Facebook messenger that her husband found my wallet while he was fishing. She has not replied yet since I know there’s limited signal at the beach. Still waiting how can we contact each other.
As of 24-Mar-18
I already received the contact number of the person who has in possession of my wallet. She is now being coordinated by Ate Maricel to reduce her hassle.