Aurora Province: Discovering PH’s Surfing Capital | Turista Boy
Aurora Province: More than PH’s surfing capital
Surfing the Pacific waters of Aurora province while overlooking the Sierra is not usually what you can see when visiting the beach. That’s what this province is famous for. Also ashore are various gastronomic and surfing adventures that are enticing for first-timers to try – and is hard to resist! Swear!
Before anything else, the province is named after Manuel Quezon’s wife, Doña Aurora Aragon-Quezon and this place is also the birthplace of the former. The province is formerly part of Tayabas (now Quezon Province) until it became a province in 1979.
Traveling to Aurora Province can be a bit tiresome, but rewarding. So I’ve come up with a list of what and what not to expect in this surfing haven. Surf’s up!
WHAT: Long and wide coastline.
“Unli-beach!” Like how locals in Boracay would describe their shores, that’s how Aurorans describe their coastline, too. With its 328-km stretch of beach and blackish-grey sand, you can surf and beach-bum all day, particularly in Sabang Beach, the most popular beach and surfing site in Aurora Province. There’s also a wide array of restaurants, hotels and inns, and surfing schools that you can choose from.
This is one of the things that fascinated me when I first stepped in Baler. I tried to look for jeepneys to bring us to different places but I’m surprised that their main mode of transportation is the tricycle. It just gives Baler more of a rural look, which makes me feel a little ‘probinsyano.’ I wish they had calesas, too, to complete the package. Fare ranges from PhP 10-20, depending on how far your destination is.
WHAT: Baler is a sanctuary for history buffs.
Baler was once inhabited by the early Tagalog people and was then invaded by conquistadores during the Spanish Colonial Period. Through the years, Baler has been witness to some important historical events that are significant in shaping Philippine History.
Today, Baler is now home to a lot of historical sites that now became instant tourist attractions. Some of which are the Baler Church (the site of the Siege of Baler), Manuel Quezon Memorial Park (near Museo de Baler), and Doña Aurora’s Ancestral House (across Baler Church).
WHAT: Entrance Fees
While Baler is now an up-and-coming tourist destination, it comes with the fact that it cannot manage to host a large number of people. So for regulation’s sake, almost all of the tourist spots in Aurora require you to pay minimal fees (with official government receipts) for the attractions’ order and maintenance. I think this is also a way of the Local Government Unit of Aurora Province of preserving the historical sites for generations.
WHAT-NOT: Fast Internet Connection
Internet access is a need, folks! This is one of the glitches I had experienced when we were in Baler. True, you can connect to 3G, 4G, or LTE but the web pages on your smartphones and tablets don’t load or say “no internet connection.”
Bummer! Although there are a few internet cafés in Baler, it’s still best if you document your travel in your own comfort. So let’s just go to the other kind of surfing, shall we?
WHAT: Accommodating People
Traveling to far places really is exhausting. Good thing there’s a unique way of greeting tourists at the central terminal. Locals don’t cease to welcome us with greetings of “Good morning,” “Welcome to Baler,” and “Kumusta kayo?” It simply made my day. People everywhere are smiling and they invite you to whatever they offer. It’s really good to wear a smile in this place!
WHAT-NOT: Cool climate
Even if it is near the beach, Baler is literally a ‘hotspot.’ Average temperature ranges from 19.3°C – 25.3°C year-round. It’s a perfect blend between the hot town climate and the cool waters of the Pacific.
WHAT: Everything’s affordable!
From Tricycle tours, accommodations, karinderya chains, pasalubong centers, and restaurants, everything in Baler is budget-friendly, especially for those who travel thriftily. To know more about how we spent our money in Baler, check out our detailed itinerary and expenses here (SOON)!
Want to know more? Check these tourist spots that you must see before leaving Aurora Province here!