Friday, April 24, 2009

Pangasinan: Patar Beach in Bolinao, Pangasinan

Patar Beach in Bolinao, Pangasinan is another Pangasinan beach worth visiting. It's actually one of the more popular beaches in Pangasinan, with a good number of resorts in the area. And their numbers are growing. It's very picturesque with strong blue waves lashing at the cream sand along the shore. We left Anda early in the afternoon to proceed to Bolinao, look for a resort to stay for the night, and enjoy our second beach for the day!

In the center of Bolinao town is the centuries-old Bolinao Church (the parish is celebrating its 400th year this year). In front of the church is a marker pushing forward the claim that the first Mass on Philippine soil was celebrated in Bolinao Bay in 1324 by Blessed Odorico, a Franciscan missionary on his way to China, who took refuge in Bolinao Bay during a storm.

The last time I was in Bolinao, I visited the U.P. Marine Science Institute and stayed in a hotel in town. This time, I made sure we stayed at Patar Beach. The beach is actually several more kilometers from the town proper. And along the way is a long row of resorts that offer accommodation ranging from nipa huts to pricey hotel rooms and beach villas.

On the way to Patar Beach is another iconic attraction of Bolinao, the Cape Bolinao Lighthouse. The lighthouse, constructed in 1905, is one of five major lighthouses of the country and the second tallest after Cape Bojeador Lighthouse in Burgos, Ilocos Norte.

Patar Beach is actually at the end of the road. Resorts usually charge you PHP30 for parking and you can enjoy this really great beach. There are also huts for rent for the day. Just a warning though, while the cream sand on the beach feels really great, once you get into the water, it becomes rocky and it's difficult to walk on.

If you want to stay right beside Patar Beach, there's only one decent resort there, Treasures of Bolinao, where we chose to stay for the night. And they capitalize on the fact that they don't have competition with really high rates. They have a nice elevated walkway where you can see Patar Beach from end to end or view the picture-perfect Bolinao sunset.

The rest of the resorts in Patar Beach only have basic accommodation such as nipa huts. But if you're willing to drive back to Brgy. Ilog Malino, there are more choices such as Puerto del Sol, another high-end resort.

Part 1: Tondol Beach in Anda, Pangasinan

How to get to Bolinao, Pangasinan
Victory Liner and Five Star have several bus trips from Manila to Bolinao daily. Trips begin at about 7 a.m. and leave at intervals of 2 to 3 hours.


  1. Anonymous24.4.09

    We're going to Bolinao next week May 1-3. I'm so excited! I just hope the rain would stop before our trip.
    any advices on going there?

  2. too are planning to go this may 1. site says its going to be 33 degrees celcius hot on that day but with rainshowers and thunderstorm.

    ei, thanks for posting the photos..they are so nice.

  3. Anonymous23.8.09

    I am sorry, the "Treasures of Bolinao" elevated walkway was a very stupid idea - it practically destroyed the beauty of those rock formations? If they have done that in another country, they would have been sued. I saw it for myself and I was pretty disgusted. It was tacky and only cheapened Patar - well of course, Treasures of Bolinao was nothing was an ugly mass of concrete stuck in what would have been a beautiful beach. I don't get it when you said it was "nice" when what they have done was almost criminal. I am very disappointed with this post from you. And I thought you had good taste.


  4. Anonymous23.8.09

    And sorry, that walkway was illegal and an eyesore. Sensible travelers (foreign and Filipinos) that I have met complained about that walkway. It should be removed immediately. I read your articles occassionally, being a frequent traveler myself but I am very very very disappointed with your comment on the walkway. I expected more from you.

  5. Haha! Hold on for a minute! I didn't see it before the walkway, so I could not have noticed the difference.

    While I agree that it could have been done better, or not been built at all (now that you've mentioned it), take note that even some UNESCO World Heritage Sites have walkways built for better views, my point being, it's case to case.

    You claim it's illegal. Please give details. Because if it is, then I'll mention it is illegal. But if it's not, and they got a permit, the most we could do is ask them to improve it.

    And please define sensible. With so many things to complain about in our tourism destinations, don't expect me complain about everything. This blog is here to promote our country. I've done and continue to do my share in pointing out things that are wrong, especially when it comes to heritage. And I also choose my punches, especially since too much negativity is not good for a blog that promotes tourism. Don't you think?

  6. Anonymous15.9.09

    Hi Ivan,

    By destroying a natural rock formation, that itself is an illegal act and it falls under the jurisdiction of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (just as one would ask for a permit once one is going to cut down a tree.) I really do not understand how the resort owner was able to get away with this atrocity.

    Sensible travelers mean people who not only go and appreciate a destination, but proactively support sustainable and environmentally friendly tourism. In short, travelers - not just mere tourists. We had a lot of negative feedback from the expats residing in Bolinao regarding this issue as well. Elevated walkways (concrete or otherwise) is not a problem as long as you do not destroy anything. Walang problema dun.

    While I certainly do not doubt your efforts of promoting the Philippines as a premier tourist destination- I also would like to see a little more emphasis when it comes to the aforementioned environmental and sustainability issues that I have mentioned. After all, we want see and enjoy these beautiful sights also in the far future.

    I know that you have misconstrued my earlier comments as being negative, though I initially hoped actually that it was meant to be a constructive one. I expected a different answer from you though, considering that you are quite a well known from the Philippine travel blog circuit. Siguro nasa sayo na yon kung pano mo sya basahin.

  7. Ryan, I'm going to Bolinao again next week. And I'll ask around about it.

  8. hi., ivan how to contact you,by the way? i'm asking permission to upload those photos into the forum
    to avoid copyright issue. :0 hoping for your kind consideration. thanks!

  9. Anonymous30.3.10

    hello there!
    me & my friends are going to patar beach on april 10. we don't have any idea how to get there if we're going to commute. for example, we're coming from Cubao, can u please help us? u can text me @ 09277939922 since i dont often surf the internet. i will appreciate if you can help me. thanks.

  10. Just take a Victory Liner bus straight to Bolinao :)

  11. Anonymous17.4.10

    for those looking for affordable accomodation around Patar Beach, ping this number Beeboy 09204526157.

    In our case, I initially thought about Rock Garden Resort which had the least expensive accomodation. Unfortunately, when we got there, all their cost friendly rooms are fully booked. We ended up knocking each available resort. Fortunately, we got an absolutely perfect rate from this very kind and accomodating guy….to the extent that I promised him i’ll post his number on the blogs to payback the discounts.

    …prices are quite negotiable…i mean it.

    —by the way, if ever you’ll call him, kindly inform him you got the number from a post by Ian on the internet (that guy who promised you to post your number); Just so he knows i didn’t break my promise cause I told him to give me the same rate when I come back, which i’ll surely do.

    Don't think about those fancy hotels and resorts because after all, you'd rather still bathe in the ABRA beach where the sand is (It's a little past the lighthouse). The beach on the shores of the resorts and hotels is quite rocky and shallow that you'll have to walk 500m away roughly to get the water level at your waist.

  12. Anonymous21.4.10

    hi there,
    im planning for pangasinan trip with my family, im working on the itinerary and i wuld like to ask for your suggestions.
    date: May1-2, 2010 (must be in Manila by May 2,7PM)
    overnight: we might be staying in JCT beach resort, anda, pangasinan.

    here are the things to do that i have in mind,please help me put time table.
    swim in Tondol beach, Anda
    swim and watch sunset in Patar beach, Bolinao
    visit bolinao falls and enchanted cave
    visit cape bolinao lighthouse

    please help me... thanks a lot.
    you can email me if its not too much to do ( =)

  13. Anonymous5.5.10

    hi guys, im grace. im getting married on june and im still planning my honeymoon. i wanted it to be memorable but not too expensive. i've heard a lot about patar bolinao and i think its a nice place for honeymooners. could you help me plan a spectacular hooneymoon?

  14. Anonymous21.5.10

    patar beach is the best ,its so amazing.nagbakasyon kami na pakage na lahat sa 3k kasama na pati day tour.. mc. odero resort is very hospitable inn to come. kuya biboy odero thank you po till next time babalik po kami sana di kayo magsawa sa pag asikaso sa mga tourista at bakasyonista. dave_ribaya@yc facebook ko you can see the pic of patar there.

  15. I was looking for Bolinao packages and came across this site with your pictures on it: are you related with the owners or did you give them permission to use your images?

  16. Nope, the images were used without my permission. I've reported them already. Thanks!

  17. Anonymous15.1.12

    very helpful post. thanks for taking time to give details. by the way, we're planning to go there on the 28th. Would you know where we are supposed to go directly from Bolinao, if we're thinking of pitching a tent?

  18. Anonymous3.5.12

    Ivan, how do we get to bolinao from anda, tondol? Thanks. We're going there on may 12

  19. Anonymous9.5.12

    kakagaling ko lang sa patar bolinao last may 1 para tingnan yong site n pinag bibili s akin dp cya talagang develop as a resort di ko alam kung mg kano talaga ang bilihan per square meter pero ang rate n bigay s akin ay 3k per sqre mtr ask ko lang kung mahal b yon?

  20. Myna Sabado9.5.12

    Hi Ivan ! Am so thankful for your website because of it we were able to find good home cooked food in Bolinao. We were checked in at Puerto Del Sol but the prices are outrageous !!! So I researched and saw Ian post here about Beeboy's Resort (called El Heredero) about being very accommodating. Fortunately I was able to talk to him and since they're near Puerto del Sol we asked if their katiwala, Marlene can cook for us ! That started a 3 day bliss of seafoods including Lobsters, Shrimps, Alimasag, mangga and fresh coco juice !!!! Thanks again !!! For those going to Bolinao, check out El Heredero :) Ample accommodations, not wow but worth it and people are very very nice !!!! It's 2 resorts away after Puerto Del Sol !!!

    More power !!!!

  21. Anonymous9.8.12


    manggagaling po kami ng Clark Airport. May I know how to get to Bolinao from Clark?


  22. hi my officemates are planning to go to bolinao next month can you suggest the best and cheapest place to stay? please email me at thanks much

  23. Hi gud pm just want to ask help regarding accodation in bolinao we are a group of 20 including children want sana po ng buong house with cooking utensils na at plan namin this coming end of the months mga 2 -3 days po and sana nice price din thank u pls. Email me sama sana ang pictures ng house so we can see thanks po

  24. hi po were planning to go to patar beach next week..ask ko lng po kng magkanu po entrance fee at hause rental for over night?. hoping for your's my e'add you!

  25. Anonymous11.4.13

    really great place...I was there last April 6. maganda talaga yung place, the sand and clear water.


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