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November 18, 2016

Family-Friendly Things to do in Puerto Galera

Located in the Northwestern end of Oriental Mindoro province, some 130 km south of Manila, Puerto Galera has been designated as one of the Man and Biosphere Reserve locations in the world in 1973 and awarded the title “The Most Beautiful Bay in the World” by UNESCO. Every year, it continues to welcome thousands of tourists from across the world, just in the same way it has done since it welcomed the first Spaniards who settled in the area in 1574.

Although many tourists love Puerto Galera because of its beaches and thriving nightlife, it is also one of the best places to visit as a family. Indeed, it has of late become the most preferred tourist destination by tourists accompanied by children. As a result, there are now a lot of family-friendly beachfront hotels and resorts in Puerto Galera that are just a few meters from the ocean. Hotels get fully booked during peak season so make sure to book in advance.

You will most likely be overwhelmed by what to do once in Puerto Galera. However, there are some important locations and activities you will need to engage in for the benefit of all your family members.

Beach Activities

One of the beaches you will need to visit is White Beach. In addition to numerous beach activities you will engage in, you will also have the opportunity to receive massage right on the beach. Indeed, there are masseuses who are always on the lookout for visitors in need of massage. This will no doubt be a good opportunity to introduce your kids to a massage experience.

There are also several other beaches you may want to visit. These include Talipanan, Aninuan, Long Beach, and Coco Beach, among many others. Note that everything you will need including food while on any of the beaches will be readily available.

Water Activities

Boating is an activity you will not want to miss once in Puerto Galera. Indeed, you will be able to hire a boat at a reasonable fee to hop from one island to another exploring the hidden caves that are rich in varied forms of life.

Riding on a banana boat will be another unique boating experience you will not want the kids to miss. Indeed, it is only by banana boating that the kids will be able to come close to the deep clear waters that surround the islands.

The waters around Puerto Galera is very rich in different types of fish and snorkeling tours are very common. Such tours will provide you and the kids with the best opportunity to appreciate the marine life in the area.

Sightseeing & Visits

You will need to plan to take the whole family to Paradise Zoo for a unique encounter with the wild. The zoo located in Puerto Galera town is home to over 1,000 different reptile species and other endangered animals. This will be the perfect place to go to for a golden opportunity to see the Philippine spitting cobra among other reptiles.

Located some 15 km along the road from Puerto Galera to Calapan town is Tamaraw Falls, a must visit place for the opportunity to have a firsthand experience of how the water gushes and pounds its way down to end up in a nearby beach. Other falls you will need to pay a visit to include Talipanan Falls near the famous Mangyan Village.

A visit to Barangay Aninuan will be a good opportunity to let your kids know about the other side of life. It is here that Stairway Foundation, an international non-governmental organization has set up base to help street children and children who have been sexually abused. It will be a good idea to take the kids to the center for lessons on issues relating to sexual abuse and how to handle the same.

Your tour of Puerto Galera will never be complete without a visit to Mangyan Village. The home established by Ayala Foundation is home to the native Iraya Mangyans, a community that initially lived along the coast of Puerto Galera. This is the community that used to trade with the Chinese, Indonesians and Malay merchants.

It is believed that they were forced to migrate to the highlands with the introduction of Christianity, something they did not welcome. They migrated to the highlands to preserve their culture. Dark in complexion with curly hair, Mangyans are now skilled handicraftsmen/women whose products are exported worldwide. It is very important to note that the Mangyans are not a tourist attraction, their village is. You and the kids will need to display high level of respect on your visit.

You will want to wrap up your visit and tour of Puerto Galera with a visit to Excavation Museum. The history of Puerto Galera is long and it is in the museum where you and the kids will be able to learn everything. The museum is located near Puerto Galera Town Hall and is sandwiched between the hall and a nearby bank.

Puerto Galera is very popular with tourists. Majority of the residents of the town and municipality are medium-income earners. Accommodation facilities range from medium to high-end facilities and include resorts and lodges. Most resorts and lodges have family-friendly rooms and environment. Finding the most appropriate food for the whole family will not be an issue because everyone is catered for.

Next time you plan a family vacation, make sure Puerto Galera is it!

Photos courtesy of Solitary Wanderer (link to:

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