Just a few hours away from Manila is Puerto Galera, located on the northern coast of Mindoro. This deservedly popular tourist destination has a protected marine park just off shore and white sanded beaches combined with a developed tourist infrastructure. Puerto Galera is not one single town, but rather a municipality made up of 13 barangay stretching a distance of over 12 kilometers. West of Puerto Galera is Sabang the most well-known municipality and attracting most of the visitors to its nearby Big La Laguna and Small La Laguna beach. Another popular stretch of sand is White beach, located east of Puerto Galera. This beach sees a lot of weekend trippers from Manila looking for karaoke fun and lots of shopping options.
Diving is king in Puerto Galera and prices for courses and fun dives are amongst the lowest in The Philippines. The reefs are located a short boat ride away from shore and are home to a great diversity of marine life. You can expect to see large schools of snappers, barracuda and travelly and if you are lucky whitetip and leopard sharks.
Tourist have to pay a 50 php environmental fee when arriving in Puerto Galera.
Internet & communication
Most of the hotels are providing (usually free) WiFi access to their clients. Internet cafes come and go and charge around 50 php per hour. Smart and Globe Telecom providers have good network coverage in Puerto Galera.
Weather in Puerto Galera is dominated by two seasons; the wet season from May to October and the dry season in the other months of the year. The dry season is obviously the best time to visit Puerto Galera, with January, February and March having the lowest temperatures and receiving the least amount of rain. During the dry season there is a serious risk of typhoons, especially from July to September and they will shut down most of the places and make travel nearly impossible.
There are few ATM's in Puerto Galera and they are not always reliable so bring enough cash. In Sabang Maxbank has an Mastercard (Cirrus) ATM. On the main road in Puerto Galera near the harbour is an ATM from Allied Savings Bank connected to the Cirrus and Plus international payment network. The Travel Center in Sabang changes money at reasonable rates and will give you a cash advance on your credit card.
In Puerto Galera is an office of the Bureau of Immigration in the municipal building providing visa extensions. The bureau is open from Monday to Wednesday during office hours. In the city of Batangas in Luzon is a district office of the bureau of Immigration open weekdays from 8am to 4pm.