Mabini, Batangas is the go-to place for a lot of people when they want to have fun under the sun, and with good reason, as it offers just about everything you’d want in a coastal town. With summer fast approaching, you can bet that a lot of people will head here, particularly because of its proximity to Metro Manila. We’ve picked the top 6 things to do in Mabini!
1. Be a beach bum in Anilao
Anilao is probably the beach that comes to mind when visitors think about what Batangas has in store for them. It may not boast white, powder-like sand, but it more than makes up for it in terms of scenery and activities offered there. In fact, most of the water activities on this list can actually be done here, with different types of adventurers — swimmers, divers, and hikers — trooping here practically every day.
Anilao’s popularity may not make this a good option for those who are looking for peace and quiet.
Address: Anilao, Mabini, Batangas
The rich aquatic life in Mabini makes it a haven for snorkelers and divers. Anilao, which is said to be the birthplace of scuba diving in the country, has received several international recognitions for being one of the best diving spots in Asia, if not the world.
There are over 20 diving spots in Mabini alone including Cathedral Rock, Koala, Ligpo Island, Eagle Point, Arthur’s Rock or Dead Point, Twin Rocks, Mainit Point, Red Rock, Sombrero Island, Beatrice Rock, Bahura, Layag-Layag, Kirby’s Rock, Caban Cove, Darly Laut, Sepok Wall, Bethlehem, Mapating Rock, Merriel’s Rock, Devil’s Point, Red Palm, Bonito Island, and Malajibomanoc Island.
Did you know that Cathedral Rock was actually originally barren, but eventually became teeming with sea life when Dr. Tim Sevilla cultivated coral there? For those of a religious bent, you may be interested to know that Pope John Paul II blessed a cross here.
Binukbok is also a good option for diving. Not only will divers get the chance to see different species of fish and coral, if they’re lucky, they may even get to see dolphins there. Twin Rocks, on the other hand, is known for having barracuda.
If you’re not a diver, don’t worry, because you can still appreciate the richness of the waters of Mabini by snorkeling. In fact, the waters there are part of what is considered as a mega biodiversity area, so you can expect to see different species of fish, colorful coral, and other underwater creatures. You don’t even need to hop on a boat in order to reach many of these areas. In Eagle Point Resort, for example, you can simply take a few steps and then jump in the water to appreciate the marine life. Another good snorkeling site is the marine sanctuary at Dive and Trek.
Most resorts offer gear rental for snorkelers and divers, so those who have accidentally left these behind need not worry about missing out on the fun. La Chevrerie is one of the recommended diving centers there, as the facility uses reputable diving equipment brands.
La Chevrerie Resort and Spa
Address: 052 Barangay Ligaya, Anilao, Mabini, Batangas
Contact: +6398 556 7357 / +63917 703 3320
Website: La Chevrerie Resort and Spa
Eagle Point Resort
Address: Barangay Bagalangit, Anilao, Mabini, Batangas
Contact: +63 917 5625223 / +63917 816 4950 / +63917 712 5024 /+63920 977 6694
Website: Eagle Point Resort
3. Transform into a mermaid
"Be crazy. Be silly. Be weird. Be whatever. Because life is too short to be anything but Mermaid!" ❤️ ~~~ IMSIA Mermaid...Posted by Philippine Mermaid Swimming Academy on Monday, 5 December 2016
While not really a watersport, those who are interested in having a quirky adventure can actually learn to swim like a mermaid in Anilao. The Philippine Mermaid Academy provides the training — and the fins — for those who want to experience what the finned life is like.
Philippine Mermaid Academy
Address: MoalBoal, Anilao, Batangas, Philippines
Price: from 2,000 PHP (40 USD)
Contact: +63915 179 8989
Website: Philippine Mermaid Academy
4. Hop on a boat
If you’re tired of being in the water, why not travel on top of it? Various resorts in Mabini, Batangas rent out kayaks to guests, so you can have a relaxing experience rowing the day away.
However, if you want something more challenging, you can always try out windsurfing. Don’t worry if you’re a beginner, as classes are offered for those who want to try this out. In fact, fees cover the windsurfing board and instruction. Do note, however, that windsurfing lessons are offered exclusively for those who know how to swim.
Address: Anilao, Mabini, Batangas
Contact: +63915 508 5655
Facebook: Windsurfing Anilao
5. Go on a hike
If you get tired of the water, you can always climb a mountain. Mount Gulugod Baboy is a popular hiking spot. It is beginner-friendly, with climbers able to reach the peak within one hour or less, so even those who are not used to mountain climbing can experience it here. The mountain has three peaks: Gulugod Baboy, Pinagbanderahan, and Tore.
The reward for reaching the peak is a scenic view of the entire town, and a combination of blues and greens from waters and forests.
Late afternoon is a good time to climb Mount Gulugod Baboy so you can enjoy the sunset. Make sure to bring water for the hike.
Mt. Gulugod Baboy
Price: 30 PHP (.60 USD) registration fee; 500 PHP (10 USD) guide fee
Duration: around 2 hour trek (climbing and descending)
6. Explore nearby islands
If you get tired of Anilao — although that would be quite hard to believe — you can always hop on a boat and go island hopping. Two nearby islands are a great choice for those who are looking for adventure. One option is Sombrero (Hat) Island, so called because it looks like a hat from a distance. Those who are interested in scuba diving will be happy to hear that a lot of the dive spots are within close proximity to this island. The surrounding areas are also good snorkeling sites. However, do note that the current can become quite strong here, and there are also some areas that look deceptively shallow but are actually deep, so less experienced swimmers would do well to take extra care. Better yet, wear life vests to ensure your safety. The entrance fee to Sombrero Island is 50 PHP / 1 USD.
Another good option is Isla Markaban, better known as Isla Puting Buhok (White Hair), so called because of its caretaker, who has a head full of white hair. Adventure seekers will not run out of places to explore on this island. Aside from its white sand beach and clear blue waters, it also has a coral garden, which makes for a good snorkeling site. The island also has a beautiful man-made bridge, which can provide a good background for photos.
The entrance fee to the island is 250 PHP / 5 USD per person. This is inclusive of a hut rental, since it can get pretty hot there, especially at noon. Those who prefer roughing it would be glad to know that this island has a camping site.
Isla Puting Buhok
Address: Mabini, Batangas
Price: Boat rental for 10 pax: From 2,500 PHP (50 USD)
Opening Hours: 9 am - 6 pm. Closed on public holidays.
Access: Pump boat from Anilao
Contact: +63949 696 5379
Those who are looking for adventure will do well to choose Mabini, Batangas as their destination. With all of the different attractions offered here, every visit guarantees something new for guests.
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