2024 ANAWANGIN COVE Step-by-Step Travel Guide for Day Trip & Overnight Stay



If we’re talking about beaches, there’s really no place like the Philippines! You’ll find a spectrum of colors on the different shores that wrap around this archipelago. In a sea of fine, white sand beaches, the volcanic gray shores of Anawangin in Zambales stand out!

The Philippines has countless beautiful beaches and some of them are pretty unique. If you’re looking to visit a beach that’s not your usual white or cream-colored sand, among the beaches you can go to is Anawangin Cove. In this cove, the stretch of sand is not just regular sand. It is strewn with volcanic ash dumped by Mount Pinatubo when it erupted in 1991. The beach is also lined with Agoho trees giving it a Baguio meets Boracay vibe that’s unique to the coves of Zambales.

Years ago, Anawangin raised the tourism in the quiet town of San Antonio in Zambales. Weekend warriors flocked to its ashen shores for a quick escape from the city. It also gave way to the “rediscovery” of other beautiful beaches tucked in San Antonio’s coastline. If you’re thinking about going on a trip to Anawangin Cove soon, keep reading because we’ll tell you all the details that will help you plan your trip in this travel guide!


How to Get There

Manila to San Antonio

By Car

If you’re planning to drive to San Antonio, you can simply use Waze or Google maps as your guide. Just put Pundaquit in San Antonio Zambales as your destination.

  1. From North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), take the exit to Olongapo and merge onto Rizal Highway.
  2. Turn left towards Burgos Street, then turn right to Canal Road.
  3. Continue driving onto Dewey Avenue.
  4. Turn left towards RH5 National Highway or Bugallon Road.
  5. Take a left turn towards San Agustin Road. Your landmark is Castillejos Water District.
  6. When you reach the Barangay Hall of San Antonio, turn left.
  7. Turn left towards San Marcelino – San Antonio – San Narciso Road.
  8. Turn left towards Evangelista Street and turn right on the third intersection going to Evangelista Street.
  9. Turn left to San Nicolas and drive straight to Pundaquit Road.

NOTE: If you’re heading to the market, make a right turn before you reach the San Antonio Police Station along San Marcelino – San Antonio – San Narciso Road.

 

By Public Transportation

1. MANILA TO SAN ANTONIO, ZAMBALES

From Metro Manila, board a bus to Iba or Santa Cruz and get off at San Antonio Public Market. The fare will depend on the location of the bus terminal in Manila and the type of bus. Here are the usual bus terminal locations:

  • Cubao
  • Pasay
  • Sampaloc
  • Caloocan

Fare Range: P350 – P800

Victory Liner Bus to Iba

Victory Liner and Cisco Bus Co. plies from Manila to Zambales regularly. Victory Liner has these routes from their terminals in Sampaloc, Cubao, Pasay, and Caloocan. Meanwhile, Cisco terminates from the Five Star Bus terminal in Cubao and Pasay.

For the complete schedule for all terminals, you may check our Manila to Zambales Bus Schedules & Fares article.

If you are coming from Clark, Baguio, and La Union, you may also check our How to Get to Zambales article.

 

2. SAN ANTONIO TOWN CENTER TO PUNDAQUIT

From San Antonio Public Market, ride a tricycle to Barangay Pundaquit. Tell the driver that you are heading to Anawangin Cove. He’ll know where to drop you off exactly. The trip will take around 15 to 20 minutes. The fare is P40 per person.


Pundaquit to Anawangin Cove

By Sea

From Pundaquit, rent a boat to take you to Anawangin Cove. You can also book an island hopping tour package if you want to see other nearby islands and coves like Camara Island, Capones Island, Nagsasa Cove, and Talisayen Cove.

Pundaquit Boat

If you want a hassle-free experience, it’s best to book a boat or an island hopping tour in advance. There are many tour operators and agencies offering Anawangin Tour or island hopping packages. For our most recent trip to Anawangin, we booked an island hopping tour in advance with Nagsasa Cove Zambales on Facebook. Pricing depends on which islands you plan to visit and if you’re going for a day tour or overnight trip. We will include more details on the boat rates below.

 

By Land

Anawangin Cove is also accessible by trekking Mount Pundaquit. Similar to getting there by sea, the jump off point for the trek is also located in Barangay Pundaquit. The hike to Anawangin Cove can take around four (4) to five (5) hours.


Pundaquit Boat Rates

We paid P3,500 for a day tour island hopping. The boat can accommodate up to four (4) people so you can split the cost. For our island hopping tour, we chose the following stops:

  • Camara Island
  • Nagsasa Cove
  • Talisayen Cove
  • Anawangin Cove

However, you can also switch up this itinerary and choose Silanguin Cove or Capones Island in place of other stops. If you want to go to Anawangin Cove alone, the boat rental from Pundaquit costs P1,500 and is good for up to four (4) pax.

Day Tour Boat Rates:

  • Island Hopping – P3,500 (good for up to 4 pax)
  • Pundaquit to Anawangin – P1,500 (good for up to 4 pax)

 

If you plan on going camping, there are also tour packages that include entrance fees, tents, meals, roundtrip transfers, and boat transfers. Tour operators and agencies might have different inclusions in their packages, so make sure to check the itinerary and inclusions first before booking.

One of the many tour operators in San Antonio is Nagsasa Cove Zambales on Facebook. They offer boat rentals and tour packages to different coves in Zambales. Included in this travel guide are the details of their tour packages for Anawangin Cove.

Anawangin Tour Packages

Anawangin Cove (2 Days, 1 Night Tour)

  • Solo: P2,200
  • 2 Pax: P1,500/head
  • 3 Pax: P1,200/head
  • 4-5 Pax: P1,000/head

Here are just some of the package inclusions:

  • Rountrip boat transfers
  • Entrance fee to Anawangin Cove
  • Island hopping to Capones Island
  • Tent (for sharing)
  • Drinking water
  • Charcoal
  • Use of cooking utensils

You will notice in this travel guide that the bigger the group, the cheaper you pay per head for the Anawangin Cove Tour Package. So if you’re thinking about going on a trip to Anawangin and you’re on a budget, invite more friends to go with you!


Where to Stay

If you’re looking for a full service hotel or resort, you won’t find it in the coves of San Antonio. There are resorts in Anawangin, but they only offer basic accommodation or tent rentals. You can also bring your own and pitch a tent for a fee. One of the resorts in Anawangin is Destinare Beach Resort & Campsite. You can find their rates below.

Destinare Beach Resort Anawangin

Destinare Beach Resort & Campsite

  • Small TP Nipa – P2,500
    Good for 2 Pax
  • Big TP Nipa – P3,500
    Good for 4 Pax
  • Small Nipa – P6,000
    Good for 6 Pax
  • Small Villa – P6,500
    Aircon, Good for 5 Pax
  • Big Villa – P7,500
    Aircon, Good for 6 Pax

NOTE: Their room rates do not include the entrance fee to the resort.

Here are their published entrance fee rates:

  • Weekdays & Sunday – P250/head
  • Saturday – P350/head

Although during our island hopping tour, we went to Destinare for our Anawangin stop, but we were only asked to pay P150/person for the entrance fee and P50/person for the viewpoint access.

Destinare also has other accommodation options including rooms for big groups of up to 15 people. They also have packaged promos that you can avail if you’re a group. For more details and other inquiries, you can contact them through their official Facebook page.

 

San Antonio and Other Beach Towns

While accommodation options in Anawangin are limited, you can find more places to stay at in San Antonio, especially in Barangay Pundaquit. Being the jump-off point to the coves of San Antonio, you can opt to stay at a resort in Pundaquit and just go for a day tour to Anawangin or an island hopping trip to multiple coves.

Youhan Beach Resort
Youhan Beach Resort. Photo provided by the resort via Agoda.

Its neighboring towns San Narciso and San Felipe also offer more accommodation options. If you are planning to explore more of Zambales and heading northward, the provincial capital Iba is also a good base. To help you with your planning, here are some of the top-rated hotels you can consider booking for your trip.

Top Hotels on Agoda

Top Hotels on Booking.com

If you want more suggestions with more details about each hotel, you can also check our Top 10 Beach Resorts in Zambales article.

Find more Zambales Hotels!

Klook.com


Day Tour vs Overnight Stay

Both these options are feasible, but each has its pros and cons. The better choice also depends on how much time you have, what you want to experience, and how much you prioritize comfort.

Overnight Stay

Staying overnight in Anawangin Cove means you can have more time exploring the place. You’ll also get to see the sunset from the cove and watch the stars at night. You can also catch the sunrise if you wake up early the next day, and then spend the rest of the day island/beach hopping before going home. However, let this travel guide be your warning: accommodation options in Anawangin Cove are very basic. You can either book a room or pitch a tent. There are toilets and showers, but if you’re particular about having a nice bathroom, these might be lacking for you.

Day Tour

Anawangin Cottages

If you want to stay at a more comfortable hotel or resort, do a day trip and book a place to stay at in Pundaquit. On our most recent trip, we only did a day tour. But because we also wanted to see the other coves and islands in San Antonio, we decided to go on an island hopping trip. This is a good option for those who have very limited time, but want to see more attractions. Although if you want to spend more time enjoying the beach and swimming in Anawangin, we recommend just spending your day there rather than going beach hopping.

When you’re on a day trip, you need to be back in Pundaquit by sundown. What’s good about this is you’ll still be able to watch the gorgeous sunset on the boat and in Pundaquit.


Things to Do

  • Swimming and sunbathing. The sand here is not white, but it is very fine and feels really soft on your toes so sitting around the beach or laying on the sand is a nice way to just relax. It has shallow waters which is perfect for taking a dip even if you don’t know how to swim. But keep in mind to always be careful anyway!
  • Climb the viewpoint. Anawangin has a viewpoint where you can get a stunning view of the cove and its surrounding hills. They have built a stairway that will take you to the top of the hill which makes the climb a bit easier. But honestly, it was still a bit tiring and we had to stop for a minute a few times to catch our breath. I mean, it was 272 steps. That’s a lot! And yes, we actually did count the steps.

    Anawangin Cove

  • Island hopping. If you’re staying overnight in either Anawangin, you can visit other coves and islands on an island hopping tour. You can go to Camara Island, a small island very close to Pundaquit, Talisayen Cove and Nagsasa Cove which are very similar to Anawangin, and Capones Island. When in Capones, you can also check out the lighthouse.

    Anawangin Boat

  • Go stargazing. If you’re staying overnight, you can go stargazing as well!

Where to Eat

It is important to note that there are no restaurants in Anawangin. If you’re camping and staying overnight, the best thing you can do is go to the market.

San Antonio Public Market

When you get off the bus at San Antonio, head over to the public market before making your way to Pundaquit. San Antonio Public Market has meat, seafood, vegetables, and other ingredients you would need to make your meal. Of course, don’t forget the rice! You can cook the dishes yourself or hire a local cook to make your meal for you.

If you book a packaged tour, you also have the option to include meals in the package so you don’t have to worry about cooking. But if you ask us, go ahead and go to the market and cook your meals on the beach for a full camping experience!

Meanwhile, if you’re only going for a day tour, it’s best to just bring a ready meal and some snacks since your time is limited. There are also places around the public market where you can get these. One of them is a restaurant across the street from the market called Nora’s Resto where you can get burgers and various rice meals like fried chicken and silog. For snacks, you can go to Fontanares Grocery right beside the restaurant for chips, bottled drinks, and more. You can also get street food or kakanin in the market.


Frequently Asked Questions

When is the best time to visit?

The best time to visit Anawangin is during the dry season between December to April. During these months, you have less chance of the rain dampening your beach trip. However, it is important to note that more tourists come here around March to May since this is considered the “summer” season in the Philippines. It would be best to avoid going on weekends during this time because it can get a bit crowded. And if you want to avoid the intense heat, November to February are the most ideal.

 

Is Anawangin Cove safe?

As we’d like to stress in this travel guide, Anawangin Cove is generally safe. Of course, it is still best to be cautious and make sure to keep an eye on your belongings. As far as health safety, it is important to know that there is no clinic on the cove. Make sure to bring first aid and any medicine you might need on your trip.

When swimming on the beach, it is best to be careful especially if you’re with kids or non-swimmers. Although the beach has shallow waters, there are parts that have sudden dips. Keep an eye on your kids and non-swimmer companions and do not let them swim on the beach alone.

 

Are there toilets and bathrooms for day trippers?

Yes. If you pay the entrance fee at a resort in Anawangin, that will give you access to their toilets and showers. However, if you’re on a day trip, it might be best to shower once you’re back on the mainland because you might get wet on the boat ride back. That being said, ask your boatman if you could use their bathroom in Pundaquit or if they can recommend a house that let’s you use their bathroom/shower for a fee. On our recent trip, the tour operator has a shower area that you can use for P20 per person.

 

Are there tents for rent?

Yes. However, if you see yourself going on more camping trips after visiting Anawangin, we highly recommend getting your own tent instead since this will be cheaper in the long run. You only have to pay a tent pitching fee plus the entrance fee if you bring your own tent.

 

What to bring?

  • Food and water. Whether you’re going on a day trip or spending the night in Anawangin, make sure to bring enough food and water with you. Being a secluded beach, you won’t find much of these here.
  • Sunscreen. Don’t forget to protect your skin from the sun! We highly recommend using reef-safe sunscreen too.
  • Insect repellent. If you’re staying overnight, you’d want to avoid mosquito bites.
  • First aid kit and medicine. It’s always better to come prepared especially if you’re going to a destination that doesn’t have a clinic or pharmacy.
  • Camera. We’d like to stress in this travel guide the need to bring a camera of some srt since Anawangin Cove is stunning and you’ll surely want to capture photos here.

And of course, always remember the “Leave No Trace” principle for responsible traveling: Take Nothing But Photos, Kill Nothing But Time, Leave Nothing But Footprints!


Sample Anawangin Cove Itinerary

In this travel guide, you will find two sample itineraries for Anawangin Cove below. First is a day tour itinerary and the second one is an overnight itinerary. You can choose whichever you want to follow based on your travel plans. If you want to make adjustments depending on your preferences, feel free to do so.

Day Tour Itinerary

– Arrival in San Antonio
– Shop for lunch in San Antonio Public Market
– Tricycle to Pundaquit
– Boat to Anawangin Cove
– Pay entrance fee & rent a cottage
– Lunch
– Climb the viewpoint
– Swim
– Boat to Pundaquit
– Shower
– Tricycle to San Antonio town proper
– Bus to Manila

Overnight Itinerary

Day 1

– Arrival in San Antonio
– Shop for meal ingredients in San Antonio Public Market
– Tricycle to Pundaquit
– Boat to Anawangin Cove
– Pay entrance fee & room/tent pitching fee
– Lunch
– Climb the viewpoint
– Pitch Tent
– Swim
– Dinner
– Stargazing

Day 2

– Breakfast
– Pack up
– Island hopping
– Boat to Pundaquit
– Lunch
– Tricycle to San Antonio town proper
– Bus to Manila


Watch Related Videos on YouTube

You can watch our Anawangin Cove Travel Guide video below. You can also find other related videos on our YouTube channel.


Updates Log

2024.06.07 – First uploaded

Related Article: Anawangin Cove Important Tips


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