Liw-liwa in San Felipe, Zambales

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

It has always been a dream of mine to go on a solo backpacking trip and just recently, I made that dream happen. I spent ten days backpacking in the North of Luzon, where I made six stops, and I will tell you all about the whole trip, one blog post per stop. 

My first stop was Liw-liwa which is located in San Felipe, Zambales. It was not my first time there, because I have already been there three years ago. Although this place wasn't new to me, I promised myself that I would make new memories, and so I did. 

I spent one night there. I left Manila later than I had planned and I ended up arriving at Liw-liwa past 9pm. The travel time took more than six hours because of the traffic in Metro Manila, and the several stops along the way. Since it was late and I was very exhausted (even though I was just sitting in the bus), I freshened up quickly and then slept almost as soon as I checked in. I woke up early for the day's activities which involved just swimming, eating, and of course, surfing.
 I watched the sun rise from the beach.
 Just like my first time in Liw-liwa, I stayed at The Circle Hostel.
 I ended up making new friends.
I rekindled my love for surfing and vowed to practice more.

After surfing, I had lunch with my new-found friends. I recommended the place next door which serves yummy and crispy bagnet. I rested for a bit and packed my stuff, ready for the next adventure. 

Travel Notes:

How to get there:
  • Board the bus from Manila going to Iba, Zambales and ask the conductor to drop you off at San Felipe, Zambales. I took the bus at Victory Liner in Pasay. From the bus stop in San Felipe, Zambales, take the tricycle and ask the driver to take you to Sitio Liw-liwa.
Where to stay:
  • The Circle Hostel - This is my go-to place whenever I'm visiting a surfing spot here in the Philippines. They have two other branches: one in San Juan, La Union and another one in Baler, Aurora. The Circle Hostel is perfect for backpackers because of their motto: "There are no strangers here." Plus accommodations are affordable too. Check out their website here.
  • There are other hostels and resorts in Liw-liwa, and they're all just beside each other. There are also places that will allow you to pitch a tent for a fee or you can rent one from them, if camping on the beach is more your speed. 
Expenses:
  • Bus from Manila to San Felipe, Zambales - Php330 (x2 for roundtrip)
  • Tricycle - Php50 per ride
  • Accommodations at The Circle Hostel - Php500 (per night on a bunk bed)
  • Surfing - Php400 (board rental + 1 hour surfing lesson with instructor)
  • Food - rice meals range from Php100 to Php150

My stay in Liw-liwa was really short. Which meant that I have a reason to come back there. I would have stayed longer had I not made accommodations for my next stop which is Pangasinan. But that's another story that I will tell you next time. Keep posted for more! :)
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