It has been a while since my last trip to Nagsasa Cove yet my old posts about this hidden gem in the north are still receiving quite a number of comments from people who asking for suggested itineraries, directions on how to get to Nagsasa and other similar inquiries. Hence, I have come up with this quick guide on how to plan your own trip to Nagsasa Cove, Zambales.
What to bring?
There will be no food sources, electricity, cellular signal, proper accommodation and other usual amenities in Nagsasa Cove. It should be best that you only bring the necessary items. Canned and other instant food will come in handy. You can bring your own tent or hammock but in case you don’t have these, you have the option to rent from the tour guides in the town of San Antonio. If you’re looking at buying meat or fish for grilling, be sure to bring knife, ice chest, grill necessities, marinade among others.
How to get to Nagsasa Cove, Zambales?
This guide is for people who will be coming from Manila. The most ideal time to leave Manila is 4a.m. Try to catch the first bus leaving for Iba, Zambales from the Caloocan bus station. It will take you approximately three hours (including the stop-over in Olonggapo City, Pampanga) to get to the town of San Antonio, Zambales. Just tell the bus conductor or the bus driver that you’ll be dropping off at San Antonio. Most likely, some of the bus passengers will also be taking off at San Antonio.
Upon arriving in San Antonio, you have the option of getting breakfast at the town proper. Take advantage of this opportunity to shop for camp necessities in case you forgot something. In our case, we bought the food (fresh fish, meat, etc.) we brought from the town’s public market.
From the market, you may take a tricycle going to Barangay Pundaquit (Pundakit) where you will be renting the boat that will take you to Nagsasa Cove. It’s around 20 minutes away from the public market.
Renting a boat ride
The rate of boat rentals usually vary depending on your number. For a small boat with a capacity of four persons, the standard rate is P1,800.00 for a round trip. You have to arrange your return trip schedule with your tour guide. You can also have the option to visit the other coves like Talesayen, Silanguin and Anawangin Coves for an extra fee. You may also arrange to include island hopping to Camara and Capones islands before going back to Pundakit.
In case you didn’t bring your own tent, you may opt to rent your own tent from your tour guide. Tent rental ranges from P250/day to P600/day depending on the tent size and capacity.
At this point, it is best to turn off all your mobile phones. You won’t be able to use your phones while in Nagsasa Cove and turning them on will only drain your batteries out. There’s no cellular reception in the area and you won’t be able to charge your phone in case it drains out of power. There’s no electricityeither in Nagasasa Cove.
Should you wish to do all arrangements prior to the trip, you may contact our tour guide at 09108162974 and/or 09172022692. They will be glad to assist you with your needs.
Here’s a sample itinerary of my first trip to Nagsasa Cove. Though the itinerary didn’t mention, we made a side-trip to Capones Island before heading back to Pundakit. Of course, this was arranged with Kuya Kulot, our guide, for an extra fee.
04:00 Leave Caloocan for Iba, Zambales
06:30 Arrive at San Antonio, Zambales
06:45 Breakfast/ Palengke (for our meals)
07:45 Take a tricycle to Brgy Pundaquit
08:10 Arrive at Pundaquit
08:30 Take a boat to Nagsasa Cove
09:30 Arrive at Nagsasa Cove
10:00 Leave for Pundaquit
11:30 Tricyle to San Antonio
11:45 Bus to Olongapo
14:00 Bus to Manila
18:00 Arrive at Manila