Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Puerto Galera

Topography - The terrain is rugged with sometimes dense jungle, an irregular coastline with crystal clear waters and white sand beaches, a natural harbor which serves as an all-weather anchorage for all types of sea vessels.

Climate - March to May are hot and dry; rains and typhoons abound from June to October; November to February are pleasantly cool and dry. Peak tourist season is from December up to May.

Accommodation - Numerous, mostly family-run cottages and hotel rooms of all categories are available. The types of accommodation range from simple beach huts, made of bamboo and rattan, to comfortable luxury bungalows with kitchen facilities. Nearly all accommodations are quoted for double accupancy and range from 500 to 1,500 pesos for simple beach huts with porch and from 50 to 120 US dollars for suite rooms in high-end resorts. Discounts are commonly given for extended stays and depend largely on the visitors’ bargaining ability. During the low season, from June to October, rates are about 20 percent lower than quoted above. Beachfront accommodations are generally more expensive than those further inland.

Water - All resorts have running water. However, bottled mineral water (widely available) is recommended for drinking. Mindoro Spring’s bottled mineral water is the preferred choice.

Food - Most resorts have restaurants. Native as well as international cuisine is served in a variety of restaurants, along with a wide selection of fine wines, imported and local spirits. Needless to mention, seafood is the best choice here.

Watersports - The waters around Puerto Galera are rich in corals and manifold marine life. The best diving sites are located around Sabang, Small and Big Lalaguna, and on the northcoast of Medio Island. The latter, known to world scientists because of its treasures of botanical and zoological specimens, abounds with thousands of terrestrial and marine plants. Fully-equipped, modern training facilities for all levels of diving are available. At most beaches, there are surfboards, sailing boats, kayaks, jet skis, dive masks, snorkels and fins for rent.

Shopping - Souvenir textiles and RTW are sold in stalls along the pier, in boutiques in Poblacion and by street vendors. Handicraft particularly marble novelties, rattan and coconut products can also be purchased. Fresh fruits and fish can be bought at the public market in Poblacion.

Postal Service - The post office is located in downtown Poblacion. Some beach resorts take care of their guests’ mail for a small charge.

Communications - National and International DDD (Direct Distance Dialling) can be made on numerous call stations using CATSI-PLDT or Globelines telephone. Cell sites abound in Puerto Galera providing maximum coverage and strong signal for subscribers of Globe, Smart and Sun Cellular.

Currency - It is advisable to take a sufficient supply of peso since the exchange rates offered by resorts are usually 10 percent below the rates in Manila. Cash, checks and tickets and other valuables should be deposited with the resort management against a receipt.

Electricity- Since power failures occur frequently many beach resorts and hotels are equipped with electric generators. The voltage is 220 volts

Medical Care - There are several medical centers in Puerto Galera. Serious ailments or injuries should be treated in Batangas City or in Calapan. A list of all the medical clinics and their corresponding emergency phone numbers are provided herein: Municipal Hospital 287-3049, PALM Medical Clinic 442-0250, De Torres Medical Clinic 287-3122, De los Reyes Medical Clinic 287-3260, Metropolitan Doctors Clinic 287-3156.

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