Move over Boracay. Enter Blue Lagoon – the beach in the north where the sand is as white, the waters as blue but the pollution is virtually non-existent. If you’re tired of the more popular beaches’ incessant noise and partying, try this virginal haven in the sprawling town of Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte.
The Blue Lagoon, also known among locals as the Malingay Cove, used to be a secret getaway. In fact, when people say “Pagudpud Beach”, it usually means Saud Beach which is about twenty minutes away from Blue Lagoon. Recently, however, because of its rustic beauty, Maira-ira (the name given to the entire stretch of beach in Blue Lagoon) is fast gaining popularity.
During the summer, the cerulean waters of Blue Lagoon are idyllic, placid and serene. Though during the rainy season, the surfs are strong and unfriendly. Even if it’s summer, however, make sure to equip children (if any) with life vests for added protection.
Sloping gradually from the shore, the underwater flooring is composed mostly of off-white sand which has a grainy quality because of shattered shells. The underfoot obstruction is minimal to none making it perfectly safe to swim barefoot. Beware of the slight undertow, though, as well as the drop after the gradual slope if you don’t want to find yourself in waters higher than the average person’s height.
There are no resorts in Maira-ira, the nearest one being Kapuluan Vista Resort. It is advisable therefore, to bring your own tents (and other necessary equipments such as flashlights) if you wish to spend a quiet night at the beach. If you’re only staying during the remainder of the day, however, there are simple wooden cottages you can rent for only twenty pesos.
If you’re on a tight budget, another thing you should remember is to bring your own food to Blue Lagoon since the prices there are quite high. And since there are no ATM machines in Pagudpud, don’t forget to bring enough cash for entrance fees, rentals, food, souvenir items and other miscellaneous expenses.
To those who wish to see this scenic beach of Maira-ira, there are buses bound for Pagudpud from Manila. If you have your own wheels, then gear up for a long drive but be prepared to trek a dirt road which turns to a muddy trail when it rains.
Ilocos Norte might seem so far away and it’s true that it takes twelve hours to reach Pagudpud from Manila but if you wish to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the urban setting, why not pack your bags and head off to Blue Lagoon – the Boracay of the north.