Liwliwa, Zambales: How to Get Here and What to Do

Get away from the summer crowd and find a spot on this little-known Zambales beach
Photo by Cloris Jade Paz

#Summer2k19 always equates to #BeachVibes with family and friends. It’s that time of the year when you book flights to Boracay, Baler, La Union, and El Nido — aka the summer hotspots of the country. But if you’re the type who wishes to stay away from the mainstream beach scene this summer, Liwliwa in Zambales should be your next beach trip.

The sloping shores and gentle waves make the sleepy yet special town of Liwliwa, Zambales a worthy retreat from the city. Just a few hours away from Manila, Liwliwa has become an alternative to most famous surfing spots in the North. If you’re not a big fan of the crowds La Union and Baler are famous for, then San Felipe’s surfing pride is your best bet.

The Basics

Blue with a hint of sandy will be your palette this summer
Photo by Cloris Jade Paz

There are two ways to get to Liwliwa: drive or commute. My friends and I chose the first option. We rented a car and one of us was the designated driver. All six of us paid P1,000 each to cover the car rental, toll fees, and gas.

The commute option is more affordable. Initially, we planned to take a Grab to Victory Liner’s terminal in Cubao and take the bus to Zambales, which costs P450 per trip. To and from Zambales, we only had to pay P900. After the bus, we would look for tricycles to take us to Sitio Liwliwa, which would cost less than P50. Had we gone down the commute route, our transportation budget would be a hundred bucks cheaper.

Still, nothing beats the convenience of having your own car.

Liwliwa’s accommodations are simple, but they fit the area’s rustic charm. Homey and soulful, the beach’s line of hostels and inns range from P400 to P1,400 per night. My friends and I stayed at Surface Beach Resort where we booked the largest room (for eight people) and paid P8,200 for the night.

Food isn’t a problem for your budget either. There are karinderyas everywhere and their menus have meals for as low as P80. Mommy Phoebe’s, for example, had the best home cooked meals and fresh fruit shakes. We had dinner at Kapitan’s where a friend and I shared calamares for P200, which was more than enough for us.

Lazy Beach Days

You’ll find many IG-worthy moments on the beach
Photo by Kyla Baltazar

Most people flock to popular beaches to get their piece of “peace and quiet.” I used to think Bora and Elyu could offer me said peace of mind, but when I arrived at Liwliwa, I changed my mind.

A pine tree-lined smaller alley will lead you to the area’s wide and unspoiled beach. Complementing the simplicity are the roaring seas, clear blue skies, and fresh air. A few nipa huts here and there completed the peaceful scenery.

It was the perfect place to relax and — yep, you guessed it — to take a couple of #beachfashion photos.

Summer is the perfect opportunity to bond with friends
Photo by the writer

One of the best things about Liwliwa is that it’s not as crowded as the other mainstream beaches in the country. It can’t rival the shores of Palawan, Boracay, and Cebu, but there is something about this place that makes you feel more peaceful and at home. I spelled CHILL NIGHTS with L-I-W-L-I-W-A.

The beach also has a pretty strong signal reception so if you’re dying to capture your #beachvibes photos for Instagram, you’re free to do so. We barely got any internet at our hostel, but we did have a weak phone signal. It’s the perfect place for to unplug and actually talk to your friends.

It may not be a white beach, but the sand’s still pretty perfect
Photo by the writer

While most of the travelers prefer to lounge and laze around the shores, some take the call of the waves and surf. Most of the restaurants and hostels offer surf lessons with locals as instructors. Also, surfboard rentals cost P250/hour.

I had a really good time at Liwliwa, though I’m no beach bum. It made me realize my ideal beach outing: just a chill day, lounging around with the girls and exploring nearby eateries for food. If you’re not much of a beach lover like me, you’ll surely fall in love with the waves — all thanks to Sitio Liwliwa.

 

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