Fun, Fizz, and Friendship Under Bolinao's Spell
The land trip took about eight hours (including our quick stops for breakfast and lunch) via the NLEX-SCTEX-TPLEX route. Travel time could have been shorter, but we did not want to rush. After all, vacation starts as soon as we left Manila and we wanted to enjoy every single detail of it--meals together included.
At TPLEX Uradaneta exit, we turned left and continued on, passing through Dagupan, Lingayen, Sual, Alaminos, and finally, Bolinao. While the trip was butt-numbing, the views and the panoramic villa itself at the Sundowner made it all worthwhile. It was already dark when we arrived there but the pool and the bar were still aglow with charm. We had dinner, warmed up our vocal chords with the videoke (which we rented for our entire stay), and capped the night with a few shots of vodka and whiskey. One last shot and the next thing we knew, it was already day two.
|The infinity pool|
|The bar, morning after|
|All the three bedrooms are identical, except for one which also has a bunk bed aside from the double bed|
|The toilet and bath features a bamboo shower--a unique Filipino touch it is!|
|The daybeds at the living room which can accommodate three persons|
|The alfresco dining|
|The famous Instagramable hammock|
|The bed at the rooftop|
|Where the broken hearts go. Kidding!|
|The view from the rooftop|
|View from the second floor. You can actually dive from here.|
|The nearby port as seen from the veranda|
|The rooftop is love|
|The pool on the other side of the property|
|It might have been fun to drink here!|
|Ang mga huwarang empleyado ng taon.|
|Bagoong, green mango, and tomatoes|
We were told that the popular Patar Beach was just 15 kilometers away, so after lunch, we all hopped inside the van and off we went there. It was almost a 20-minute ride, passing through concrete streets with no rough roads. At an intersection was the Bolinao Lighthouse, another famous tourist spot in the province.
Patar Beach is an average stretch of sand off the western coast of Bolinao, facing the controversial West Philippine Sea. The cream sand was powdery fine unlike other beaches in Pangasinan such as in San Fabian and Dagupan. Cottages and native huts are available for rent, both for day tours and overnight. There are eateries (paluto-style) and sari-sari stores where you can conveniently buy snacks and booze.
|Cottages by the beach|
|With my best boss ever.|
|Ang mga ulirang empleyado ng taon, part two|
|On the far end is a popular resort called Treasures of Bolinao|
As the sun set and our stay in Bolinao came to an end, we couldn't thank God enough for bringing us together; for making all the pieces of the puzzle fit; for another year of friendship. Here's to many more fun, memorable years together in the future! Cheers!