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A beach resort called Honey!

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honey beach postcard 3
Originally uploaded by antondiaz.

Proceed with caution :)

I love beaches and when I got hold a copy of Philmap's beaches of the Philippines, I immediately looked for a beach area that is a driving distance from Manila but still exotic (or unexplored). I fell in love with the pictures of Honey Beach which is located in Sawang,Lobo, Batangas. Finally last Independence Day weekend, we had a chance with my wife's balikbayan friend, Espie. Yes, Lobo batangas beaches are not popular -- I can't find any google info about these beaches and nobody talks about them and I now understand why. Aside from the Philmap's article, which focuses too much on the positive and don't give you the negatives, I intend to give you local travelers, adventurers and beach lover like me what to expect and how to have a fun time in Lobo beaches.

Here are some of the key highlights:

Honey Beach Accomodation is OK for family/friends specially if you have kids! The place is a private resort (recently opened to the public) owned by the Macalintals who shuttles back and forth between the US and their retirement place in Honey Beach. There is a whole article on the background of the place in Philmap's article and I don't intend to replicate it here. There are only 2 airconditioned rooms (suppose to be good for 5 each but from experience one can have 4 and the other 3 persons that could sleep comfortably) and 2 cottages (suppose to be good for 12 there are only two beds and the rest should sleep in a banig or mattress). Resorts should be more truthful on the maximum capacity of the rooms considering that people are not skinny girls and people needs to sleep comfortably. Having said that, since the place is a little private it is ideal for kids because it is not crowded, there is a putting green where the kids can play with the golf balls, and the service is warm + personalized.

You would spend P3,500 for the airconditioned room and P600/person for 3 meals (lunch, dinner, breakfast). Service Charge is not included and they have a song and dance number when you arrive that encourages you to provide the staff tips if you feel happy about their service.

This is definitely a great place to relax and breath fresh air with your family and friends!

Honey Beach BargeSawang, Lobo BeachLobo, Batangas Sunsetrelaxing chairs

There are alot of negatives (consider yourself warned!)

1. The road going to Lobo is terrible (although it has improved alot from a few years ago) -- 20km of rough roads sporadically spread throughout your journey to Lobo. Bring a big car or SUV -- highly recommended.

2. The Lobo beaches sunrise is behind the mountains and sunsets in front of the resorts but still behind the mountains (not the horizon). You have a feeling that there is something wrong with your location and wanted to move the mountains. So this is not an ideal place for sunrise/sunset shots.

3. Although they would say that the beach area in front of the resort is already protected recently (proclaimed as a marine sanctuary)-- the catch is the corals are alread DEAD! It is so sad that the fisherman killed the vast corals and snorkeling is a sad experience. It's like looking through grey dead corals.

4. The beach area in front of honey beach is disappointing. It is definitely not white, lots of rocks, and it is only clear in the morning but looks murky in the afternoon. Don't expect a stretch of white beach along a cove. Although, there are nearby resorts which have the kind of beach (submarine, and lily) -- This would be next on our lists of places to explore.

Some tips on how to make your trip exciting and fun.

1. Since it is a private resort, there are only a few things you can order. We can't even order san mig light, peanuts, and the like. Since there are no corkage anyway, bring the drinks and junk foodies you need to make your stay alot more exciting. Drinking by the beach is definitely a must!

Ponte Fino Scenes

2. There are two ways to go to Lobo, one is via Batangas City and the other one via Rosario which is 30 minutes shorter. Both have a long stretch of rough roads. I would suggest to go via Batangas city (just follow the road going to Ponte Fino which leads all the way to Lobo) and on the way back go via the Rosario Batangas route. I suggest that you make Ponte Fino as a stop over and savor the nice view of the pool in this hotel. If you don't know your way to Ponte Fino, just go via Startoll-- exit batangas city-- turn right after the exit toll-- just go straight past the batangas pier and makro batangas-- turn left going to ponte fino and follow the signs. Email me if you need directions.

3. This is an ideal getaway from all the hussle and bussle of manila. So bring your close friends and family and enjoy the night away.

More Information:

>> Photoset on Honey Beach, Lobo Batangas
>> Honey beach tag on Flickr photo

Click below for the contact info:
Honey Beach info

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You have a great blog --- complete with photos and reviews of really interesting things within the reach of your Metro-Manila based readers. Keep up the great work!

thanks wysgal for the appreciation! you know that these kinds of comments motivates us bloggers... salamat.

UPDATE:

Here's the contact information:
Pancho or Linda Macalintal
+632 722-051
+63916 432-9713
+63920 517-5178

lindamac@info.com.ph

Hello, Anton :)

I've been reading your blogs for quite some time now, and have gotten a lot of interesting ideas on where to go.

This is actually my first time to comment on your blog.

Anyway, I just wanted to say that I'm glad you were able to enjoy your stay in Sawang. My mother hails from Lobo, Batangas, and even though I grew up in Manila, I have been there almost every year.

Have to agree that the road is a bit of a killer, but I know I will always come back to it not just because it's my mom's hometown, but it's a town with a charm on its own :)

Just like to commend you on your great blog! I've certainly taken into consideration your comments in making any decision about any place you have written about. We made CHARLEY'S at Batangas the venue for our daughter's birthday celebration this year because of your recommendation. Thanks for your inputs! Btw, spoke with Mrs. Macalintal yesterday and she said the dirt road is only a short stretch now. Their land line no. is 722-0051, and their website is http://www.honeybeach.vze.com/

My mother's clan lived in Fabrica, Lobo Batangas, I suggest you to visit beaches in masaguitsit like Almalin(former gerthel beach), near to poblacion, where you can buy all stuff like beer, junkfood etc. besides, it is white sand and you can also rent boat that will tour you in sawang and malabrigo where lighthouse is located.

Entrance in Almalin is free. They have cheap room for accomodation and you can buy fresh fish not more than 20 pesos per kilo.

Hi,

is this a good place to shoot a prenup pictorial?
may I know the rates of the resort?
tnx

well i guess all beaches have its own market.:-) it depends on the type of service and clients they serve....lets just enjoy the nature and love lobo as our ancestors place....love it!

,i can say that the road via rosario is more improve now,i went to lobo to visit my mom and my cute house only last sat.while im driving i always telling my husband that road is really fantastic....

I'm planning to head down to Lobo in 2 weeks. Hows the road via Batangas City? Still bad? Or should I just take the Rosario route instead? I'll be using a car. Thanks in advance!

I heard it is good already... not sure how true.

Hi! il be down there in Alamalin Lobo Beach resort in about a week from now! A lot of my relatives doesnt wanna go cuz they thought its too far.. is it???? problem is, i already paid the place. Please Help! Please send me directions on how to get there pls =( thanks so much and anything will be greatly appreciated! tahnks thanks!!

It is far but if the roads are already fixed then it is worth it :)

It was a chance success visiting Gerthel Beach. We were supposed to stay at the Almalin Beach Resort but ended up at Gerthel Beach since Almalin was fully booked that day. Gerthel Beach was not crowded last April 25,2009. We enjoyed the peaceful scenery of the place.What fascinated me was Lobo seams to me haven for white seagulls and variaties of birds. The water was not that salty perhaps due to the fact that beside the beach is a a big river/lake. Comparing to Laiya Batangas , the sand at Gerthel is finer(you can stroll barefoot).
The waters gradually get deeper so there is no danger for non-swimmers plus the fact that resorts here have lifeguards.
Getting to Lobo took us 3 1/2 hrs regular driving taking the Star tollway. There is a 40 min (30-40 km/hr speed) sharp zigzag road along the mountain side (sharper than Baguio's Kennon Road). There is no problem for lowered cars since the road to Lobo Batangas is asphalted.
Gerthel Beach Resort provides little amenities. Only a videoke pavillion that operates until 10 pm is available. Well, in my case I enjoyed the peaceful evening with the sea, stars and the moon.
You go back to the basic when you are at Gerthels. No electric stove,TVs, Ref etc. Its just you and your humble Nipa Hut. Bring your own blankets since the resort provides only 2 pillows, 1 mattress, and 1 blanket/ nipa hut. There is no way you can rent these things since they are limited. Beers and the likes can be bought from the sari sari store nearby.

For those who plan to go boating to nearby snorkling places.The management of the resort will arranged for some boatmen to take you to nearby islands. I suggest that you ask for life vests. Most of the boats in Lobo dont have standard precautions. Honestly, i cancelled our boat trip since they only have 4 life vest for 12 people.

Early morning activities includes bird watching on the lake and letting smooth waves touch your feet. Nature really heals the soul.



So the road to Lobo is OK already? Do you have contact with Gerthel Beach?

anton

lobo is such a beautiful place, the roads have so improved through the years thanks to the elections, there are more improvements before every election.hehehe!!! i first visited lobo, in 2003 december, it took me 4 n 1/2 hours from magallanes. as the elections went on, i can now make it in 2hrs and 45mins.gov vi is surely doing her job...... gertle stretch is the best in lobo, cleanest, safest to kids. here's aling meding's no. she the caretaker of gertle, 09186000806. not the best accomodation but confortable.....

I need to go to Gertle stretch next time :) thanks for the tip!

cool! am really not expecting that people from Manila would love the place like Lobo. When people asked me where is Lobo, i always tell them dead-end of Batangas! hehehe :p but REALLY this place is awesome. wanting to visit my lola/lolo's house here. if you know P-ET, am not sure how it spells hehe.

There are many beautiful beach resorts in Batangas and in this belong to those places. I've been in a different beach resorts in Batangas like in Bauan, Calatagan, Cuenca, Calaca, Ibaan, Laurel and Lian and i am planning to visit more beach resorts.

I can not recommend lobo batangas if someone is looking for the good beach...the place was abused..people dont know how to protect the place..this place is not good for tourist..

Hi Anton, we are glad to inform you that the road going to Lobo are now much better than your last visit. All roads are now paved with cement which makes the travel easier and faster. You might also want to add the sightseeing tour on your Tips List on how to make your visit to Lobo more exciting. There are a lot of places of interest within Lobo that are definitely worth checking out such as the Malabrigo Lighthouse that dates back from the Spanish colonial period, trek to Ulupong falls, and a river boat cruise. We look forward to your next visit soon!

https://www.facebook.com/HoneyBeachResort

Hi, thanks for including the cons and warnings. Are there fishes near the shoreline of Honey Beach? Is it good for snorkeling?

Its not good for snorkeling...

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