Most of the people who loves/ wants to surf normally go directly to Urbiztondo Beach in San Juan, La Union as this is one of easiest way to access among surfing spots in the Philippines. It is considered the surfing capital of Northern Luzon, other surfing spots are in Baler Aurora and Siargao.
If you’re a non-surfer it’s not a problem since the province have plenty of attractions and activities to offer. One of which is trekking to Tangadan Falls in San Gabriel, La Union. I wrote down instructions below on how to get to the falls and estimated budget if you’d like to do this activity + activity rentals, other attractions and where to eat suggestions.
Tangadan Falls, San Gabriel, La Union
HOW TO GET TO TANGADAN FALLS
Take a bus from Manila bound to La Union for about 5-7 hour ride depending on traffic condition. If you’re coming from the South/NAIA Airport, then go to Partas Bus Terminal in Pasay, fare is Php453. They also have one in Cubao if you’re in Quezon City area. There are also other bus terminals like Viron, Dominion, Philippine Rabit etc., within Metro Manila that you can choose from.
- If your accommodation is in San Fernando, take a bus going to San Fernando and get off to the terminal.
- If your accommodation is in San Juan, take a bus going to Vigan or Laoag and ask the conductor (driver assistant) to drop you off at Urbiztondo Beach, San Juan.
When you get off to your accommodation, you can hop in to a Jeepney bound to San Gabriel, around Php17-20. Tell the driver that you’re going to Tangadan Falls. After getting off, go to the Municipal Hall and register (Php30/ per person). They will provide you an authorized guide that you can hire for (Php500) good for 1-6 persons.
Cliff Jumping on the way to Tangadan Falls
Starting from San Gabriel, Municipal Hall, you have 3 options going to Tangadan Falls.
- Using private vehicle: Normally done by tours, they go straight to Tangadan falls trail-head and trek down to the waterfalls for 10-15 mins.
- Using Habal–habal (motorbike): Hire a habal-habal to Tangadan falls trail-head (Php300/ per person, round trip) and trek down to the waterfalls for 10-15 mins. *Remember that you also need to pay for your guide, so that’s another 300.
- Using Tricycle + Trek: Hire a tricycle for (Php50/ 2 persons) for about 10mins going to Tangadan Falls jumping-off point. It’s an easy trek that would take about 1 and a half hour to the waterfalls.
- It is important to register (until 2pm). This is necessary just in case something happen. After registering they’ll provide an authorized guide (wearing proper guide shirts). They will not allow you to hike if you arrived late in the afternoon unless you have a private vehicle that could take you to the trail-head.
- The guide is mandatory, so you should hire one. It’s cheaper if you’re in a group of 4-6 person as you divide the guide fee.
I was travelling with my good friend Duy so we shared the cost of guide/tricycle fee, we took the third option. Below are the travel expenses to Tangadan Falls in San Gabriel, La Union.
CONTACT(S) & EXPENSES
- Jayson +639108411650
|Php40||Roundtrip jeepney fare from San Juan to San Gabriel.||Php670||Php370 (for 2 or less if you’re in a group of 4-6)|
|Php100||Roundtrip tricycle fare from Municipal Hall to Tangadan Falls jumping-off point|
And that’s how you go to Tangadan Falls in San Gabriel, La Union!
We stayed in Urbiztondo Beach for about 3 nights with Php1000/ room accommodation. There are a lot of options, just take a pick according to your budget. Originally, we plan to surf, the waves are good on our arrival date but it subsides in the next days so we end up just eating, chilling, watching sunset and stand-up board paddling (that turned out to be sitting ’cause of unfriendly waves. haha!
- If you’d like to learn Surfing, rate is Php400/ 1 hour with surfboard and instructor.
- If you already know how to surf, Surfboard rentals is Php200/ 1 hour and Php500/ half day.
- Paddle board rentals is Php200/ 1 hour.
Photos from Urbiztondo beach.
OTHER ATTRACTIONS: Aside from Surfing and Tangadan Falls there are also other places/activities to visit in La Union like Churches, Macho Temple, Balay na Bato, Pebble Beach and other places that I’m probably not aware of. haha!
WHERE TO EAT: In terms of places to eat, i can suggest Surf Shack Resto Bar, Mad Monkeys, Coffee Library and Flotsam & Jetsam being my favorite because of good food, chill and nice ambiance.
That’s it, thanks for reading. Just Say Hi if you have questions.