Hidden Paradise : Coastal Resort Town of Pagudpud

I tossed up whether I was going to write about this place. I loved it so much I wanted to keep it just for myself. Forget the palm trees and the white sands and the calm transparent water of the beach, a big attraction of this place was it was largely unoccupied. Just the break I needed to get away from the smog, people and energy of Manila.

The beach rivals that of Boracay in the Philippines, yet does not have all the tourism that goes with it. No merchants trying to sell their gear every two steps, no noise pollution of motorcycles blowing their horns and no loud western tourists demanding all and pushing their way around. We had arrived at Saud Beach in Pagudpud.

I discovered this paradise quite by accident. Paradise might be a word that gets thrown around a bit in the travel blogging community, but this place was as close as I have been to it. It is at the northern most tip of the main island of the Philippines, Luzon.

Arriving at night, we were whisked away from the bus terminal, via an unsealed road and dropped off at this ‘resort’. Not a resort that I was used to, more like a more motor inn, but the location could not be rivalled. When we awoke and walked the twenty metres to the main building of the resort we were confronted with a fantastic view of a picture postcard perfect beach. Palm trees as far as you could see. Majestic water you could play in for hours at a time, being just the right temperature.

We liked it so much we extended our stay from one day to three. At just P1500 ($35 AUD) per night it was a steal. One tip though, the town does not have any ATMs we are told the closest is an hour bus ride away. Not that you need lots of money, but take enough cash so you don’t come up short.

The resort literally backed onto the beach, in fact we were talking to the owners who said when they bought the place, they owned their section of the beach, before the government reclaimed it.

There is not much to do here, activity wise. You could hire a boat and be taken for a ride for P1500, not from any special tour group, just one of the local fisherman, who would supplement his income. In the three days we were there, I saw just one other westerner, with most of the visitors be Filipino, coming from Laoag City and surrounding areas. It was very relaxing spending time on an untouched beach.

Beautiful Filipinas playing in the sand

No high rises to be seen. The first night we were there, we went for a stroll on the beach just looking at the stars. I had forgotten how many stars were out there. We found an isolated spot on the beach, which was not too difficult, plonked ourselves down and just looked at the sky. In the span of an hour we saw three shooting stars, one being the longest I had ever seen. The Milky Way certainly did look milky from our vantage point. We saw the lights of an lonely aeroplane making his way across the sky, and I imagined where they had come from and where they were going. I attempted to take a photo, but just being my iPhone, of course it just turned out black.

One day the resort let us take the plastic table and chairs onto the beach, where we set up for the day. They would bring us drinks right onto the beach. Two ladies approach us with a bucket full of crab like crustaceans that we would call Balmain Bugs in Australia and some scales. We negotiate a fair price and before too long the resort is cooking us lunch. The husband of one of the ladies had caught them that morning. They were delicious.

Watching the fishermen was also another past time. There were these large wooden surf ski type of craft, built from binding six or seven lengths of bamboo together. The fisherman would stand up as he paddled. When he found the right spot he would lie down and shoot his home made wooden spear gun. They were quite successful and caught small fish, crabs and one was quite proud to show off a large octopus he had speared. Other methods used were dredging large nets through the water, into the shallows near the shore to capture what they could. I have a feeling that the locals diet consisted of a lot of seafood.

99 Enjoying the Sun

Everyone we met was extremely friendly and tried to make sure we enjoyed our stay. Not just the resort workers, but locals just on the beach. Please whatever you do, do NOT visit this place and ruin my secret paradise getaway. Go to Thailand or Boracay or the Gold Coast, because this is my place :-)

This post is part four in a series. Read about the other three here.

Checkout these other related articles

Laoag : Mountains to the South China SeaVigan : Oriental and European FusionROAD TRIP! Ilocos StyleGetting Around in Manila, Philippines10 Things I Love About Manila

13 thoughts on “Hidden Paradise : Coastal Resort Town of Pagudpud

  1. Hiya, can you tell me which resort did you stay with? Is the resort along the most popular Saud beach? Am planning to visit the place in April.Thanks.

    • Hi Maffe, It’s the Casa Victoria as you discovered. Make sure you tell them Brenden and Keith sent you :-) Reasonable prices and fantastic location on Saud Beach. Thanks for the commenting and reading, hope you like the blog.

      • Hi, thanks for the post. How was your stay in Casa Victoria? We’re planning to go there next weekend.

      • You can see from the photos that it is in a wonderful location, right on the beach. The staff are fantastic and they really looked after us. They are friendly and always did their best to make us happy. Thanks for looking at the post, I am sure you will have a wonderful time next week :-)

  2. Thanks for the photos and the info was very helpful maybe I will visit Pagudpud and the area including Saud Beach your help will have given me a place to consider when I come to the Phils before long

  3. Hi! I would like to ask permission to use your Pagudpud photo (the first one) as one of our supplementary art for our article. We will credit accordingly. Would that be alright? Pls. don’t hesitate to contact me. Thanks!

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