The Great Escape to Potipot Island, Zambales - Wandering Pinoy

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Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Great Escape to Potipot Island, Zambales

For me, the most exciting part when travelling is if the place is "unknown" to me- meaning I've just researched the place on the internet or, perhaps, watched it on TV or read on travel magazines and newspapers, and I was actually "never been there before." The "unfamiliarity" of the place adds too much excitement if I'm travelling, and this is exactly what I felt when we "invaded" Potipot Island in Zambales two days ago. Special thanks to Victory Liner, Villa Roma and Dawal Beach Resort for keeping our trip fantastic!

Photo-shoot after we check-out at Villa Roma Hotel and Restaurant. Villa Roma is located at Alonso Street, Poblacion North, Santa Cruz, Zambales.

Day 1:  Leah, Arjay and I left Baguio City past 12:00 noon via Victory Liner and we arrived in Dagupan City past three in the afternoon. After a quick lunch break at a "turu-turo" (I think the place is called Linda's Eatery), we boarded a Victory Liner Bus bus going to Santa Cruz, Zambales. We arrived in Santa Cruz Zambales past seven in the evening and it's already dark. Because we thought it's no longer safe to travel from Santa Cruz to Dawal (I talked to one of the passengers and he told me that we can drop by Dawal before going to Potipot Island), we decided to look for a "nice place" where we can stay for the whole night. Thank God we immediately found Villa Roma Hotel and Restaurant! It's not only affordable (we only paid Php1150.00 for the standard air-conditioned room) but it's also very accessible. Fact is, it's only a 3-5 minute walk from Santa Cruz Victory Liner Station. It is also accessible to public transport and offers a safe parking lot for those with private vehicles. Just imagine how comfortable it was for us! Villa Roma is located at Alonso Street, Poblacion North, Santa Cruz, Zambales.

That's me at Dawal Beach Resort! Photo-shoot before we go to the Island. We paid Php400 for the "bangka" to and from Potipot Island. 

Day 2: We woke up past four in the morning the following day and the first thing that we did was drink coffee courtesy of the villa's attendant. After a few hours of preparation, we left the hotel and we decided to look for a place where we can have affordable but "yummy" breakfast. Because we didn't have enough time to look for other restaurants, we ended up eating at El Zambal which, to our great surprise, offered us a very appetizing breakfast. I learned from my researches that there are no stores or food establishment at Potipot Island so what I did was I ordered  extra rice because I wanna make sure that I won't starve at the island.

At Dawal Beach Resort! One more shot before the bangkero drove us to the Island. It took us approximately 10 minutes to reach Potipot. 

After breakfast, we boarded a Victory Liner bus going to Olongapo and we told the driver's assistant to drop us at Dawal (the fare from Santa Cruz to Dawal is only Php14.00). After more than 30 minutes, we arrived in Dawal and one of the tricyle drivers immediately approached us and he informed us that we can rent a boat for Php400.00 to and from Potipot Island. After the deal, the driver drove us to Dawal Beach Resort, and after some photo-shoots at the resort, the "bangkero" drove us to Potipot Island, our final destination, and Arjay called it "a heavenly cove" which I, honestly, strongly agree.

I'm with Arjay and Leah on our way to Potipot Island. Thanks to the friendly bangekro who took this photo. By the way, the people in Dawal are friendly and helpful. 

My initial reaction when I first saw Potipot Island was "Thank God! Our trip is not wasted!." Fact is, I was also relieved because Arjay was also happy when he saw the island. I don't want to "disappoint" him because we invited him to join us. I will absolutely be ashamed if the trip turned out otherwise. Potipot Island is indeed "heavenly cove!"
Yours truly. Am I hot? Lol! Potipot Island is indeed "a heavenly cove." Photo-shoot after hours of swimming and "fish-feeding."

The clear water and white sand of Potipot Island remind me of Virgins Island in Bohol but I find the former better. There is no resort nor any posh facility in this island. It has several gazeebos and some make-do toilet. But the sand is pristine white. The water is clear and the mountains around is a sight to behold!
Leah says "I had fun! Thanks Arjay and Aris!" Thanks too for making our trip possible! And thanks for the photos too! Hahaha! Till our next adventure! 

We stayed at the island for approximately five hours, and before we left, we also bought some "I love Zambales" souvenirs for the Quality Team. Arjay and I also managed to wander around the Island which I find very exciting because it's my first time to wander around an island.

It's me again! Because the tree-house at Potipot Island is a "no entry zone," we just contented ourselves taking photos at the stairs. By the way, we learned that the Island is owned by Governor Ebdane.

The island itself is a privately-owned land, there will be a minimal entrance fee of Php100.00. The island has no amenities, do not expect any grandiose beach huts or five star utilities. It's a bring your own adventure island. It's a pick your on spot! (And thank God we found the best spot!)
Photo-shoot before we leave. Thanks to Manong Ice Cream (not his real name. I've decided to call him this way because he sells ice cream) for taking our photo. 

We left Dawal, Uacon past one in the after noon and we arrived at Victory Liner Bus Station in Santa Cruz, Zambales around two fifteen in the afternoon. After merienda, we took an ordinary bus going to Dagupan (fae is Php143.00). Unfortunately, something went wrong with the bus when we reached Lingayen, Pangasinan so Leah, Arjay and I took a jeepney (fare is Php8.00 from Lingayen to Dagupan) instead of waiting for another Victory Liner bus. We arrived in Victory Liner Dagupan Bus Station past seven in the evening. I asked one of the "attendants" at the bus station and he told me that there's no more bus going to Baguio. Arjay, Leah and I decided rode a van (fare is Php110.00)going to Baguio instead of waiting for the next Baguio-bound Victory Liner bus scheduled at 3:30 am the following day. We arrived in Baguio City past nine in the evening, and before we parted ways, we said "good by and take care" to each other.

Update: 10/24/2013. Because I'm getting inquiries about Dawal Beach Resort accommodation rates, I have decided to post it here. I got the information from Sherrly Mirador of Dawl Resort. Here they are:

Room Amenities at Dawal Beach Resort. Photo courtesy of Dawal.
Dawal Beach Resort And Restaurant Room Rates as of October 1, 2013. 

Other Charges: 
Corkage fee - Php 30.00/pax/day
Electricity Charge- Php 100.00/unit/day
Extra Person Charge - Php 400.00/pax/day
Boat Transfer - Php 400.00/round trip (6 pax/trip)

For reservation and for more inquiries, you may call Dawal Beach Resort at 0920-6651577 / 0916-7231108.


  1. Hi :) isnt it crowded there?:) im planning to go there this coming april :))

  2. It's not when we went there because it's weekdays. According to the locals, it's "full" there on weekdays and holidays. :)

  3. Me and my family are planning to go potipot this comming 29th of April, what can u say in the island, is there camp site to sleep over?

  4. The place is safe and you camp at the island. You can also bring your camping materials. There will be additional charge if you will stay overnight.

  5. totoo po ba na makti daw ang tubig sa potipot island?my mga sabi sabi po kasi ee..
    may 4 na kaze trip nmin dun..

  6. Nope, sobrang linis ng tubig. Fact is I stayed almost 4 hours at the sea kasi sobrang nag-enjoy ako. You can even see the fishes because the water is soooo clear.

    I'm sure you will enjoy a lot! Good luck to your Potipot escapade.

  7. Good day.tanung ko lang bro where exactly sa.dagupan kau nagboard papuntang sta cruz zambales?at magkanu ung fare?sa nueva ecija pa kasi kami manggalin pero i knew meron nmn mga buses direct to dagupan dun..ty.and more power to your blog

  8. Hello, thanks for visiting my site. Hindi na kami nagboard sa Dagupan pagkagaling namin ng Baguio. Kumain lang kami dun sa may karenderia malapit sa bus station tapos tuloy na kami sa Santa Cruz.

    Kung plano nyo magplano magboard sa Dagupan, I'm sure marami naman dun pwede pagstayhan. :)

  9. Bro,thanks for the response.inquire nlng ako bus fare para may idea na ung group nmn.from dagupan to sta.cruz zambales..::)

  10. You're welcome. Hindi ko na maalala yung exact fare pero around Php200.00 yung sa Victory Liner - ordinary bus.

    If sasakay kayo ng bus papuntang Zambales, pwede rin kayo tumuloy diretso sa Brgy Uacon sa may Dawal kasi andun na yung Potipot Island. Sabihin niyo lang "Dawal", alam na ng mga drivers/kundoktor yun. Pero yung sinakyan naming Victory Liner hanggang Santa Cruz Victory Liner station lang kasi kaya dun kami bumaba.

    Have a safe trip and enjoy! :)

  11. any idea for other adventure or side trip after potipot island?

  12. Good question. You can also drop by Anawangin Cove, Nagsasa Cove or even Capones Island. These are must-see places in Zambales.

  13. Hi Donna, thanks for the comment. I'm glad that you came up with a "detailed blog" about Potipot. Awesome blog of yours. :)

  14. Thanks, Aris :) I'll check your blogs once in a while... I believe I'll be able to get some good info from you...

  15. hi! naginquire ako sa dawal beach resort and may other charges sila na electricity and corkage fee... what does this exactly mean? ibig sabihin wala silang kuryente dun? and about sa potipot, may tent rental ba dun kung magoovernight or meron naman kubo kubo for rent?

  16. Hi Rona! Thanks for dropping by. I have updated this post and included the fees and charges at Dawal Resort. Sa Island lang walang electricity. You can rent a tent/bring your own tent sa Island. Meron ding cottages sa resort.

  17. Stumbleupon to look fro resort sa potitpot very inforrmative


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