Travel Guide: Magalawa Island

It was an idea abruptly made.  For the mag babarkada, it is said that the unplanned trips have the highest probability to happen and so our Magalawa Island trip is the proof. It is a 6 hours bus ride from Manila; I thought the island is a perfect escape from the gruelling city. Unlike mainstream destinations in Zambales - Potipot, Nagsasa, Anawangin, Magalawa is a latent paradise located offshore of Palauig, Zambales.

If you are looking for a quiet and peaceful island for soul searching or retreat, Magalawa Island is perfect for you. Very quiet and uncrowded.

We arrived at the island past 4 o’clock in the afternoon. I'll be honest, at first the island wasn’t that appealing to me for I expect perfect fine white sand lying across the shore; the sand is actually not that white, not that powdery but just okay,  yes the sea is a crystal clear that you can clearly see the massive hideous seaweeds underneath in some parts of the island. I don’t know why I received so much negative vibes that moment, maybe because of the 6 hours of tiring bus ride or maybe because the last beach I have been to is the Calaguas Island which became my standard of a pristine beach or just maybe the dark sky is covering the sun, made the island a bit disconsolate and dead that time for me. But as I said, that was my first impression and I disbelieve in the saying. Tomorrow is another day and I'm sure the sun will brighten up our day. 

In our day 2, we woke up early to catch the sun rise and of course to see the different face of the island that I didn't recognize on my first day.

My most awaited day

As expected , the exquisite beauty of Magalawa Island revealed as the rays of sun touched the sand of the island and just like magic, swiftly became perfect white, same with its crystal clear water, it intensified the sky blue color of it. The seaweeds underneath instantly became the dark blue color of the sea from above making an awesome perfect body of water with a mixture of different shades of blue, such a picturesque view. Thanks to Mr. Sun.

Yes, the photos tell it all, such glorious Magalawa island that I didn’t recognize on our first day. I felt so sorry to the beautiful island for the misconception committed.  

Things to do:

1. Photo op with the star fish. IN SOME AREA there are color yellow, red, blue, black, orange star fishes in the sea floor. Making for non swimmers a bit rigid for they need to avoid the star fish in the sea bed while walking. Jason accidentally trod the star fish leaving him with a wound in his sole. So be careful!

Daylin & Jayson

be careful also with the sea urchins and jelly fish.

2. Snorkeling. 

3. Volleyball. At Ruiz Resort's backyard.

4. Beach bumming from day until night! 

4. KTV. Ruiz Resort offers free.

Maligamgam na Red Horse!

Where to Stay:

There are only two resorts in the island, the Ruiz Resort and the Armada Resort. 

1. Ruiz Resort. A cozy native resort. If you wanted a cheap accommodation and all go for this Resort, the reason why we stayed here. Plus it's just a few steps to the barrio.
-Rooms are only bahay kubo/nipa hut for P1200 good for 10 pax as Mang Mulong exclaimed.
-Commonal Comfort room with the use of 'poso'.
-Entrance fee - P100
-Round trip boat ride - P100
-Contact person - Mang Mulong - 09294670505
  Mang Mulo is such accommodating care taker of the resort. 

Our room.

In front of the Ruiz Resort. The dark blue color of the sea is actually the seaweeds underneath, but don't worry; Ruiz Resort has a pretty long shore and you can find a spot without this annoying seaweeds.

The commonal toilet of Ruiz Resort.

2. Armada Resort offers tour packages.
Contact detail - 0920-948-3303
Click here for the Armada Resort Rates

This is side of the Armada Resort, whiter and finer sand.

Other important things to bring:

1. Insect Repellant and mosquito coil.
2. Aqua shoes, if none just avoid the sea urchins and star fish.
3. Sun block lotion.
4. Snorkeling gear 

Where to eat:

There are no fancy restaurants in the Island. We had our meals at Ate Leny's Carenderia at the barrio few steps from Ruiz Resort, you can also ask paluto for P100 each per dish. 

The 'onse - onse'.

How to get here:

1. From Victory Liner Caloocan, ride the bus going to Sta. Cruz, Zambales. Tell the driver to drop you off at Barangay Pangolingan, Palauig in Zambales. Fare is P381.

* Victory Liner Caloocan - 713 Rizal Avenue Extension, Caloocan City, Metro Manila, 
                                               Phone: +63(2)3611506

* there is no direct Sta.Cruz route in Cubao, only Iba, Zambales. From the Victory Liner Bus Terminal in Iba, you can ride another bus going to Sta.Cruz for P34, just tell the driver to drop you off at Brgy. Pangolinan.
2. Hire tricycle going to Luan Port for P100. It is a 20 minutes rough ride. 
3. Contact your boat man to transfer you to the Magalawa Island. Ours, we contacted Mang Mulo of Ruiz Resort. We pay P100 for round trip. 

Breakdown of my Expenses

Day 1
-Bus fare from Manila to Brgy. Pangolingan, Paluit - P381
-Tricycle going to Luan Port P100
-Boat Ride - P100
- Entrance fee - P100
-Rent for Bahay Kubo/ Nipa Hut - P1200, we're group of three pax, thus we contributed P400each
-Dinner - P54 (rice with ulam)
Day 1 Total - P1135 
Day 2
-Breakfast - P36 (hotdog, bread, cup of coffee)
-Lunch - P64 (rice with ulam, slice of watermelon, halo - halo)
--going home--
-Tricycle going to National highway from Luan Port - P100
-Bus fare to Manila - P381
Day 2 Total - P581

Total Expenses - P1,716 

Things you should know:

1. There's no electricity at the island. Ruiz Resort's power supply is generated by power generator. No power at day, only at night so fully charged the batteries of your gadgets at night.
2. Unlike Puerto Galera and Boracay, there are no luxury hotels and fancy restaurants here, only sari - sari stores and small carenderia. 
3. Between 5:00AM to 8:00AM, fishermen sell their newly catch fishes at the shore, including the onse - onse. 
4. Undeniable dispute between the two resorts. Our sad experience,  care taker of Armada Resort told us that we couldn't  pass in a certain boundary because we came from the Ruiz Resort. I'm not sure if Ruiz Resort is implementing the same unacceptable rule for the guests of Armada Resort. Really disappointing, this is not good for the growth of the island's tourism. Please let people see how wonderful Magalawa Island as a whole. For the two resorts, I wish that you set aside your conflict, tourists are getting so much negative feedbacks. Sincerely, with so much love for the Magalawa Island, KirkAnatomy. :)

Me, ready to go home!


  1. yup, tahimik pa.
    bad vibes lang talag ung seaweeds, di ka makakalayo sa shore :>

  2. Ah, so this was the last trip you were talking about?

  3. never pa ako nakapunta dyan.... gandaaaa!!! :)

  4. @ron - yup. eto nga ung sinabi ko sayo before.

    @kuya mervz, ganda ng kulay ng tubig kuya mervz tas malinaw pa.

  5. nice one. sana makapunta ako dito asap. hehe

  6. @lakwatserong tsinelas - go punta na! hehehe. pang soul searching ang drama dito kapag gabi, sobrang tahimik. hahahahaha.

  7. See you this Saturday....kay mang mulo din kami magstay...pero sana lang magkaroon kami ng pagkakataon na makita ang Armada Resort...^_^

  8. totoo talaga na ang mga biglaang trip ay natutuloy. It's been a while, tagal na kong di nakakapagbeach namiss ko tuloy. Hope to visit this island one day. Great pics by the way parang ang konti lang ng tao! :)

    Iloilo Daytrip

  9. hi! saan mas maganda, Ruiz Resort or Armada Resort?

    1. I really can't comment about that since i havent tried armada. But ruiz' kubo is good.

  10. Replies
    1. Thanks ususera, hope you enjoy Magalawa Island when you visit.

    2. Hi there.. By the way, i found your blog so useful. Ask ko lang kung may electricfan ba sa kubo and kung ano mga activities sa island aside sa na mentioned mo?

    3. Hi there.. By the way, i found your blog so useful. Ask ko lang kung may electricfan ba sa kubo and kung ano mga activities sa island aside sa na mentioned mo?

    4. Hi there.. By the way, i found your blog so useful. Ask ko lang kung may electricfan ba sa kubo and kung ano mga activities sa island aside sa na mentioned mo?

    5. Hi there.. I found your blog so useful.. Ask ko lang kung may electric fan ba sa kubo and ano ang ibang activities na pwede gawin sa island

  11. hi...i like your blog..thank you sa info..may reservations na kmi ngayong nov. 16 sa magalawa gamit yung voucher na na-avail ko..hoping maging ok yung stay namen...ano pa ba pwede mo ma-advise aside dun sa mga nabanggit mo..thank you =)

    1. I think nasa blog na po lahat. Just prepare yourselves for a 6-hour long bus ride. :p

  12. hi mr.Kirk..thank you sa info..we're about to visit this place ngayong nove. 16...hopefully maging ok yung stay nmin...meron ka pa bang ibang pwedeng ma-advise aside dun sa mga nabanggit mo?thank you

  13. thanks for the info.. panu pla pag walng voucher ok lng din?

  14. pwede ba tents instead of renting the nipa hut? low budget ba talaga dito? thanks.

  15. pwede din ba tents instead of renting the kubo/nipa hut? low-budget ba dito? yun kasi hanap ko and so far, ok din mga low-budget places na napupuntahan namin, panalo din :) thanks in advance..

    1. yup pwede po sa Ruiz but not sure about sa rate. :)
      you can contact mang mulong with his number posted above. thanks for dropping by.

  16. Hello, matao kaya dyan kapag peak season? Like April? Last week of April sana namin balak pumunta. Thanks

  17. Hello, matao kaya dyan kapag peak season? Sa April sana namin balak pumunta. Thanks =)

  18. Hi Mhae, sorry late rep. Nasa Baler kasi ko over the weekend.
    Kapag summer siguro madame nga. Pero secure mo muna ung accommodation nyo dun. #peakseason :)

  19. comment lang po.. Its Palauig not Palauit,, tnx... :)

  20. papi ilan kaya sa tingin mo kasya sa bahay kubo ??

    1. 4-5 pax po siguro. 1 bed kasi sya na kasya ang 2 pax (will not say na its queen size) then extra foam bed sa lapag.

  21. this blog is indeed very helpful! we are planing to go there this weekend :)

  22. Hi sir Kirk...itatanong ko lng po sana kung may part po ba dito na medyo malalim ung hindi na po kailangan mag rent ng bangka...thanks po!

  23. next on my list, for the holy week. sa victory caloocan kayo sumakay?

  24. much much in awe. you really have a really interesting travel blog. planning on visiting this place soon :) thanks for the information ♥



  27. Maganda pa ba dito? virgin pa din ba? Thanks, An

  28. 200 po and fee pag may dalang tent

  29. The nipa hut room looks so cute and very traditional. I would like to stay in there. I feel like my old house in my hometown which we could not live like that forever because of the typhoon. Maganda dyan group outing, mukhang maaliwalas ang lugar saka pwede mag-luto ng fresh seafood. Definitely will visit the place.

  30. Ask ko lang po. Can we bring food and drinks in armada resort? And what time po advisable time na bumiyahe? Thanks

  31. may food and drinks corckage ba sa mga resort dito?
    and madami padn ba yong mga sagabal sa tubig habng ngliligo?like seaweeds and orchins?

  32. Yung entrance po ba na 100 is overnight na? Thanks!

  33. Awesome place. it will be great for camping


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...