La Solana is only walking distance afar from White Beach Port with a total distance of 100 to 150 meters. The Resort can also be reached by motorway from Muelle/Balatero Port with a total distance of only 5 km., a few minutes drive going to the Resort.
La Solana is located at world famous White Beach, Puerto Galera and is easily reachable from Manila in several hours with many options including private transfer, tourist coach, public bus and even seaplane. The easiest way to get here is by private hire car or van and banca directly to White Beach. Just contact us to arrange pickup from the airport or your hotel in Manila. Another option is tourist coach which is cheaper than private transfer but almost as hassle free. There are two main operators, one being the SiKat service (tel +63 2 5213344) which departs the City State Tower Hotel in Malate at 8:00am and the other the Swagman bus which leaves from the Swagman Hotel (tel +63 2 5238541) at 8:30am. Both charge a flat fee of about 600 pesos one-way which includes bus and ferry tickets, and a guide.
About Puerto Galera
Puerto Galera is a soothing vision of shimmering seas surrounded by lush mountains. It is considered one of the most beautiful and developed beach resort community in the country. Starting from “backyard tourism” wherein local residents accept local and foreign tourist as stay-in guest, tourism in Puerto Galera has flourished. In the course of time, several hotels, resorts, inns and restaurants have mushroomed within the area. Upon arrival in Puerto Galera, visitors board any of the waiting bancas (outrigger boat) that ferry passengers across the surrounding waters and into the various resorts dotting the coastline. Jeepneys to the inland hamlets of Sabang, Small and Big La Laguna, White Beach and Talipanan Point likewise traverse hilly, tree-lined routes that offer a sweeping view of the island’s less aquatic, but equally tropical side.
There are a thousand things one can do in Puerto Galera. Landlubbers can pitch tents, light bonfires, play volleyball, toss a Frisbee, go beach-hopping, watch the sunset, gaze at the stars, hike, go rock climbing, carom off on a motorcycle, discover Oriental Mindoro’s other tourist spots or simply live it up. The Puerto Galera chapter of the Hash House Harriers – a club that started 50 years ago in Kuala Lumpur and which was introduced to the Philippines in the early 90’s – regularly holds “runs”: rowdy drinking sprees that have participants following two trails, one of which leads no where. When a runner follows the wrong track, he has to go back, downing bottles of beer in the process. What follows is a night of revelry no doubt spurred by the free flowing booze.
But water is certainly the main attraction of the island. Crystal clear and shimmering especially during the hot summer months, the sea framing Puerto Galera is ideal for swimming, sailing, surfing, snorkeling and scuba diving. In fact one doesn’t have to go by boat to get to a dive site. Within a kilometer from the coast, schools of Moorish idols, trumpet fish, frog fish, lion fish and leaf fish weave in and out of thriving corals and sea anemones while species of starfish – from the speckled red-and-white to the neon-blue Pacific-rest on the sandy floor.
Gradually sloping beaches – with the terrain ranging from powder white sand to grainy dark sand to smooth stones to rough coral rubble – comprise a large chunk of the island’s 25,247 hectares. And while the department of tourism’s last count pegs the number of resorts at 63, pockets of isolated and virtually “resort-less” coves and beaches are tucked between massive rock formations. Then, as now water was what shaped Puerto Galera. As early as the 10th century, Chinese, Indonesians and Malay merchants were already doing business with locals in what is now known as Mindoro, the tiny strip of land which the Chinese called “Mai” and which lay directly in the Asia-Pacific trade route. In route to Manila in 1570, a Spanish expedition led by Martin de Goiti and Juan de Salcedo stumbled upon the resource-rich island and christened the entire province Mindoro after the harbor at Minolo. Mindoro was later divided into the provinces of Oriental Mindoro and Occidental Mindoro.
At the height of the raids mounted by Moro pirates in the 17th century. Mindoro was a defensive bastion, with fortresses in the nearby towns of Calapan and Mamburao. Puerto Galera, the northernmost strip so named because it served as a port for Spanish galleys, became the capital. Here, the Spanish found safe anchorage and put up dock-repair facilities for the galleons that plied the Manila-Acapulco route. The island’s generally calm waters, however, belied a tumultuous streak, and once in a while giant waves would crush galleons and marauding vessels. Coins, jars, lamps, swords and other artifacts salvaged from shipwrecks and sunken vessels are displayed at the Puerto Galera Museum and at Capt’n Greggs in Sabang, lending credence to the island’s colorful history.
Today, foreigners continue to be part of Puerto Galera. They have been flocking since the late 70’s making it one of the country’s foremost tourist destinations. Many, for whom the lure of the tropics proved too strong, have stayed on triggering a real-estate boom in the process and growing expatriate community.
Outside of minor glitches, Puerto Galera is a tropical paradise that is both rustic and thriving. By day it echoes with the soft breeze and the pounding waves. At night, it comes to life with heady laughter and the clink of wine and glasses, only to segue one again to the barest whisper of the elements.