Because we were headed to Puerto Galera from Batanagas for the weekend, we searched Bookaway for transport options. We ended up booking a ferry from Batangas Port to Balatero Pier, Puerto Galera. This saved us a lot of time and energy since ferry tickets get sold out quickly– especially on a weekend since tourists are also heading to the beach.
We booked the Starlite Ferry and were scheduled to leave May 31st at 10:00 am.
After purchasing our tickets, we immediately got an email that Bookaway had received our booking. A few minutes after that, we received the Bookaway voucher. Easy peasy!
The Starlite Ferry experience at Batangas Pier
The next day, we headed to terminal 3 at Batangas Port. We went to the ticketing office of Starlite to get our official tickets and less than 5 minutes later we had them in our hands! Since it was our first time to travel in that port, we were clueless. Thanks to the Starlite staff, we got instructions to the terminal ticket office to pay the terminal fee, headed to Gate 4, and waited for our ferry to arrive.
At 9:30 am, the gates were opened and we were allowed to board the ferry and were given the option to sit in either the open-air section or in an air-conditioned room. Although we weren’t bringing lots of stuff, passengers were allowed to bring a maximum of 50 kilos per person. Clean toilets are also available!
Everything was flawless! Because our experience with Starlite Ferry was good, I think it’s safe to say that Bookaway only offers transport from companies that have a credible and quality service.
I love that is convenient and assuring. I don’t need to wake up early to wait in line to get a ticket.
I can just go to Bookaway and book away!
The Starlite Ferry experience at Balatero Port
After two hours on the ferry, disembarking went very smoothly. Because we didn’t check any luggage, we were off the ferry within just a few minutes. We were then instructed to go to the pedestrian exit and pay our terminal fee of Balatero Pier.
What to bring to Puerto Galera
1. Dry bag
2. Underwater camera
3. Aqua shoes
Travel tips for the ferry ride
– Bring a portable, mini fan or pamaypay because the Philippines is a tropical and humid country.
– Bring a water bottle. It can be a long trip and you need to be hydrated.
– Ask the staff of Starlite Ferry about the boarding procedures. They will guide you up to the boarding gate. Only purchase tickets in the official ticketing offices. Baggage porters are also available and have a fixed fee per kilogram. Be sure to ask the office for the latest prices.
– You need to pay a 50PHP ($0.98) terminal fee in Batangas Pier.
– It is a 2-hour trip, so you may want to bring a book, listen to music or watch a movie to keep occupied.
– There is no Wi-Fi on board but there is phone signal.
– Once you’ve reached Balatero Pier, head to the pedestrian exit and pay a 20PHP ($0.39) terminal fee.
Travel tips for Puerto Galera
– Most stores, restaurants and hotels don’t accept credit cards. We suggest bringing enough cash for the whole trip. There are foreign exchange stores in White Beach which is just under 7 kilometers away.
– There is an ATM machine at Batangas Pier, however, the last time we were there it wasn’t working. The next ATM machine is located in Poblacion, Puerto Galera. (20 minutes from Balatero Port. A tricycle ride here would cost 150PHP ($2.94), one way).
– We suggest renting a motorbike to get around Puerto Galera to save money. Rates start at 400PHP ($7.84).
What to do / where to visit
There are lots of restaurant options here, but the beach can be a bit crowded. Plus nightlife and water sports like kayaking, jet skiing and banana boating are available.
Head to this beach for a day of relaxation and little to no crowds. Fifteen minutes from White Beach.
We suggest going island hopping to Sandbar Island, Bayanan Beach and Antonio Island, where you’’ experience the coral garden, giant clam and snorkeling sites. Boat rental for the island hopping costs 1800PHP ($35.27) and can hold up to six people. We suggest you ask your hotel reception to book you on a shared island hopping tour to lessen the cost. An additional 400PHP ($7.84) per passenger for the coral garden, giant clam and snorkeling sites.
Rates start at 3000PHP ($58.79) per person.
Costs 800PHP ($15.68) and includes Tamaraw Falls, Aninuan Falls, Tukuran Falls, Talipanan Falls and Mangyan Village.