It was our first day on Polillo Island and Charlie and I had spent most of the day at Isla Polillo Beach Resort recovering from the gruesome journey that had started at 1:30a.m. in Manila and ended at 11a.m. in Polillo Town. It was already late in the afternoon when we finally roused from a much needed nap. Fully-charged again, our wandering feet were back on track. With limited time, however, we decided to just visit a beach near the resort for a quick swim and to catch the sunset.
There are actually two noteworthy places located near Polillo Town that are listed under Quezon’s Natural Tourists Attractions – Coccoc Island and San Francisco Beach. I was wondering though why most of the locals I asked didn’t really know much about these places (perhaps they call them by a different name). There isn’t much information either on how to get to these places nor information about accommodation available online. The short description provided on the tourism website was enough to convince us to visit these places as well as the lack of pictures which just made us even more curious. But due to the lack of time, we settled for the nearby beach at Barangay Kalubakis, called Agta Beach by the locals.
We didn’t even know of this beach until we had a chat with one of the locals while on the ferry going to Polillo. She was also on a Holy Week Vacation and she told us that they (family and friends) would be going to Agta Beach on Easter Sunday. She said it is one of the favorite places for the locals to go for picnics and beach outings. I didn’t expect the beach to be anything extra-ordinary though, otherwise it would surely have been mentioned online or some rich businessmen or politicians would have already put up a private property sign and would be charging an entrance fee.
Free and accessible, however, it was the perfect beach for a quick swim and to spend the rest of our day before heading to the town of Burdeos the next day. We rented the same tricycle that brought us to Isla Polillo Beach Resort to take us to Agta Beach (Php250 round trip). It took us half an hour to reach the beach starting from Barangay Bocao where our resort was located, passing through Barangay Sabang and finally to Barangay Kalubakis.
Agta Beach reminds me of a typical coastal village beach minus the fishermen’s boats lining the shores. It has fine light brown sand that stretches to about half a kilometer and the water is relatively clear. There isn’t much to see underwater if you are keen on snorkeling but it is good enough for swimming. Aside from the family who had set up a tent under a tree, there were also a few kids playing and fishing near the shores when we got there. The beach was surprisingly clean, devoid of the usual trash found on public beaches and very tranquil. It was a good way to end our first day in the island.
Other beaches in Polillo Town
“San Francisco Beach – The beach is about one kilometer long and 25 meters wide. The color of the sand is light brown and the ocean floor slopes gradually. The area is a favorite picnic ground of the people of Polillo. It is located in Barangay Sibulan, Polillo Quezon.
Coccoc Island – Coccoc is a small island which looks like an umbrella from afar. White sand beaches surround the island. Although quite from the town proper of Polillo, this particular island is a favorite picnic area of many locals. It is located n Polillo Quezon.”