Camping by the sea combines the adventure of an outdoor getaway with the relaxation of a beach vacation. Pitch a tent, surf, and play by the shore during the day, then chill out at night while stargazing and bonding by the bonfire with pals. From secluded coves to busy seaside resorts, Zambales has an abundance of camp-friendly beaches near Manila that are worth considering for your upcoming getaway. Here are some of the best beach camping spots in Zambales. Keep in mind that we’re still in pandemic times, so pack all the COVID-19 essentials with your bathing suits and sunblock.
Crystal Beach Resort (Olongapo)
A lot of people visit Zambales to swim and surf, and Crystal Beach Resort is where you can do both just a few steps from your tent. Travelers can enjoy beach camping under agoho trees, with each tent coming with a picnic table for eating, drinking, and playing games. Air-conditioned huts are also available. For anyone who wants to stay for a few weeks, long-term stays are an option.
If you have a little time for playtime, drive about an hour to Olongapo’s Inflatable Island to splash around the water park.
Anawangin Cove (San Antonio)
A picturesque crescent-shaped cove tucked away from the rest of the world, Anawangin Cove is perfect for adventurers who want to spend a night or two in the wild. There’s no electricity or running water here, but that’s part of the appeal. Instead, find pleasure in the gently rolling waves, starry skies, and good conversation with friends. Anawangin Cove is accessible by boat from the town of Pundaquit, San Antonio.
Other similar options in San Antonio include Nagsasa Cove and Talisayen Cove.
Address: San Antonio, Zambales
Camping Rates: Tents are P500, plus an entrance fee of P130
Potipot Island (Candelaria)
Another great camping spot for roughing it is Potipot Island, a tranquil islet that’s a 15-minute boat ride from Uacon, Candelaria. Just like Anawangin and Nagsasa, there aren’t any resorts, but the peaceful shores are ideal for a beach camping adventure. If you enjoy snorkeling, a good activity is exploring Potipot’s vibrant marine life. Electricity is limited on the island, but there are toilets and showers available.
Address: Candelaria, Zambales
Camping Rates: Tents start at P300, plus an island fee of P500 (overnight)
Kwentong Dagat (San Felipe)
If you’re on the lookout for a vegan glamping experience with a dash of surfing, yoga, and meditation, Kwentong Dagat is an excellent choice. The enchanting resort is home to Instagram-worthy rooms and cabins of different sizes but if you want to sleep right on the sand, tents are also available for rent—or you can bring your own. Perks for campers include a light breakfast, use of the communal bathroom and outdoor kitchen, and basic toiletries.
Address: Sitio Liwliwa, San Felipe, Zambales
Camping Rates: Tents start at P750, plus an entrance fee of P250/P350 (weekdays/weekends) per head
Website: https://www.kwentongdagat.com, Facebook, Instagram
The Glamp Zambales (San Felipe)
As the name suggests, The Glamp Zambales delivers an impressive glamping experience for travelers who needs a little more “glam” from their camping getaway. Visitors can choose between tents of different sizes. This is as luxurious as camping can be; all bell tents are decked out with comfy mattresses, low tables, and air-conditioning. Bonfires and massages are available.
Haven Campsite Liwliwa (San Felipe)
Let the waves lull you to sleep at Haven Campsite Liwliwa, a postcard-pretty resort with bohemian-inspired accommodations and tranquil natural surroundings. Cute teepee huts and teepee villas are available, but travelers who want to connect more with the outdoors can pitch a tent at the resort’s campground. Truly, Haven Campsite Liwliwa is a fun-filled spot for a beach getaway, with plenty of things to do, like surfing, skimboarding, kayaking, ATV riding, biking, and more. Delicious meals are available at the Korean-Filipino restaurant, while the Tiki Bar is a great spot for a nightcap.
Address: Liwliwa, San Felipe, Zambales
Camping Rates: Entrance fee is P450 (with your own tent), breakfast included
Website: https://glorymendoza09.wixsite.com/havencampsiteliwliwa, Facebook, Instagram
Sandy Toes Beach Camp (Botolan)
Another laidback destination in Zambales is Sandy Toes Beach Camp, a relaxing glamping spot with two accommodation options: the basic Camping Kubo and the air-conditioned Cozy Kubo. Whichever one you choose, expect a comfortable stay with mattresses, views of the beach, and a hangout spot right outside. All guests enjoy access to the camp facilities, including clean bathrooms, a camping kitchen, and open-air huts by the beach.
New Normal Travel
Travelers coming from GCQ and MGCQ areas are allowed to travel to Zambales, with a negative RT-PCR test result. A negative result from a Red Cross RT-PCR Saliva Test is also accepted. Stay on top of New Normal travel regulations in Zambales here.
Although it’s not by the beach, Zoobic Safari in Subic lets travelers experience a different type of glamping in the wild. Families can relax in the resort’s safari-themed rooms, then enjoy sightseeing and interacting with animals at the popular Zoobic Park.
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*Featured photo via Sandy Toes Beach Camp, The Glamp Zambales, and Crystal Beach Resort Facebook page