My friends and I badly needed a break away from our keyboards and notebooks. We wanted an escape. One of my friends found a great deal online to Potipot Island in Zambales. So, we took off after class on a fine Saturday. It was one of best summer getaways I had. I will rate my experience based in four categories as explained below.

Travel. Prepare yourself for a long road trip. We took the SCTEX route to Subic and stayed on the National Road to Iba until we reached Candelaria. It took us more than six hours (with stopovers) to get to Candelaria where we will meet our contact for the boat ride. Well, I like road trips and I enjoy talking and playing games in the car but some people, especially children, may find the trip painfully long. From Candelaria, you need to ride a boat. Local fishermen offer rides to the island.

Convenience. The island is inhabited with the locals taking care and maintaining the land. Thus, there is no resort or boutique hotel where guests can enjoy rest comfortably. However, camping and sleeping underneath the stars can be pretty exciting too.

There is no safe and potable water supply so guests need to bring them. There are common comfort rooms that backpackers share. The water supply was turned off at night during our stay, which can be inconvenient. Moreover, there are no stores where you can purchase goods, guests really need to prepare everything before heading to the island.

Sights. The sights are beyond fabulous. The pristine beach, the white sand, and the crystal clear waters teeming with marine life are all yours for a day. You also have a backdrop of the mountain range on one side of the island and an expansive ocean on the other side.

Activities. Honestly, there is nothing much to do in the island except to take a dip in the water and be lazy. If you are an introvert, like me, you will love spending the day under a shade with a good book or strolling the island and taking tons of selfies. For adventurous souls, there are no extreme water sports you can try.

Cost.¬†The trip was very affordable. Each of us has not spent more than a thousand pesos. We spent a lot on the way home buying ‚Äúkaing-kaing‚ÄĚ of mangoes at the market.

Verdict. Pack your bags and go!

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