Friday, May 7, 2010

Potipot: One of Zambales' Precious Assets

Looking for a different kind of summer getaway is not that easy especially if it’s budget-constraint. But my friends and I were determined to spend it on a beach somewhere in Luzon.

I suggested Potipot Island, one of the popular destinations in Zambales. I’ve been eyeing on this beach ever since I read about its pristine sand and water. And I became a fan of camping ever since I experienced how relaxing (yet, tiring at the same time) it is to spend a day or two in a place where there is no urban pollution.

So after some weeks of planning, we finally decided that this is where we are going to spend one of our summer days together.

Almost a 6-hour drive from Manila (stop-overs included), Potipot Island is less than 10-minutes away boat-ride from the town. The island is small, you can practically discover the whole place for like 15-20 minutes. We went there on a holiday that is why a lot of vacationers were in the island that day.

There are actually cottages in the island that tourists might want to rent. Our group however decided to bring our tents for camping.

The sunset’s stunning. I wasn’t able to take a good picture of it though. At low tide, an area where sea weeds grow rises above the sea, which can be very photographic if you have a good subject to shoot.

We searched for the huge dead tree that has been the iconic thing in the island. I mean, everytime we google Potipot, we often chance upon the picture of this dead tree. That is why I made sure that I have it on print too.

Sunrise is undeniably cozy when you’re in a beautiful place like this. The sand and the sea glistens under its rays. Just make sure that you have your sunblock because the sun at 10am onwards is harmful.

As for the activities, I saw banana boats within the vicinity but none of us availed to have the ride. Of course, taking pictures is one of the default doings when you are in a different place.

They say that there are a lot of starfishes in that beach and we proved them right. We chanced upon this little starfish while swimming. But after taking its photo, we decided to bring it back to the sea. Sad thing is, some tourists get a handful of this poor creatures, just to dry them up to bring them home.

Bonfires are not allowed in the island. My friend who was assigned to bring the emergency lamp forgot to bring one so we ended up using flash lights while drinking by the sea that night.

Compared to Anawangin, Potipot’s beach is a bit friendlier – there are no huge waves (or maybe because it’s summer) and the sand is better. But I think it’s better to camp in Anawangin because the area is cleaner and there are no cottages that are up for rental. Also, the huge trees in Potipot leave a lot of dried leaves on the sand, which makes it quite unsightly.

But all in all, we really enjoyed the place. Potipot Island further proves the beauty of the 7000 plus islands that comprise our country.

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