I was not aware that Dingalan exists until I saw a promotional video about a new resort in Aurora, Philippines. Dingalan is a name given by its first inhabitants, The Dumagats. It means “by the river of Galan” because the territory straddles fifteen (15) rivers and streams which show the abundance of water. When I got intrigued about the beauty of Dingalan, I contacted Hon. CJ De Guzman (Chairperson on Dingalan Tourism), Kap. Ricardo Balala Jr (Barangay Captain of Ibona), Dingalan Local Youtuber Mr. Michael Bustamante (Negrong Tourguide) and other businesses willing to collaborate on an article about Dingalan.
Here are the Top 17 Things To Do in Dingalan, Aurora, Philippines!
1.) Meet the People of Dingalan
“Just leave your bag there,” Benidick Conchada, a Dingalan tour guide, told me with assurance. Being trustworthy is one of the famous traits of Dingalan people. Consequently, it has one of the lowest crime rates in the Philippines. (Swipe below photo to see portraits of Dingalan locals I have interacted with)
2.) Stay in one of Dingalan’s Top Accommodations
You cannot explore Dingalan in just one day. You have to stay longer by booking some of the nicest accommodations in Dingalan. For 4 days, I have stayed at Puffer Isle Inn & Resort. Read my separate blog here.
3.) Enlist in the Island Hopping Tours of Dingalan
When booking an Island Hopping Tour, please consider the time when it is high tide or low tide. For some tourists who want to explore Lamao Caves, low tide is the best time. For tourists who want to swim into Dingalan’s deadpool, high tide is the best time. The tours’ registration is located at Dingalan Feeder Port in Barangay Paltic. I rented the whole boat during sunrise. It was an amazing experience. Maybe on my next visit, I’ll do my island hopping tour during sunset! (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
4.) Lamao Caves
On a seaside cliff in Barangay Paltic, there are 12 caves called as Lamao Caves. At low tide, your boat can enter into one of the bigger caves. You can then jump off the boat and enjoy the bluish cold water coming from the Pacific Ocean. You can either do swimming, snorkeling, or cliff jumping. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
5.) Suah Rock Formation and Dead Pool
Suah Rock Formation offers a panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean. It is one of the best spots in Dingalan, Aurora. Your boat can dock on a less rocky shore, then hike for about 15minutes to reach the tip of the Suah Rock Formation. Then, voila, one of the best views of your life. At high tide, beside the Suah Rock Formation are deadpools you can enjoy with nemo-like fishes. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
6.) White Beach
White Beach has been called out as “White Beach na hindi na White (Which Beach which is no longer white)”. During a typhoon last 2004, there has been a landslide from its neighboring mountains which impacted its color and texture. White Beach is your starting point when you want to hike to Dingalan’s Light House and/ or Batanes of the East. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
7.) Dingalan Lighthouse
Although Dingalan’s Lighthouse looks humbler than other lighthouses, I was very happy to see it. It is my first time to see a white light house!
8.) Mountain View
On the other side of the light house is another iconic view. They call this view as ‘Batanes of the East’ due to its resemblance to picturesque Batanes Islands. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
9.) Tabi Falls
Tabi Falls is located in Sitio Tabi in Barangay Umiray, Dingalan, Aurora. You have to hike for an hour in order to see the beauty of Tabi falls. Legends say it was called Tabi Falls because you have to say ‘Tabi-tabi po’ so mythical environmental spirits can let you pass safely. As of this writing, water in Tabi falls is drinkable. I have tried it myself. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
10.) Laktas Falls
Laktas Falls is located in Barangay Ibona, Dingalan, Aurora. What tourists like most about Laktas Falls is the wide layers of the falls dropping into one bigger pool. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
11.) Abungan Falls
Abungan Falls is located in Barangay Ibona, Dingalan, Aurora. It is the tallest falls in Dingalan. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
12.) Lipit River
One of the best things to do in Lipit river is swimming, camping, picnic and bonding with friends. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
13.) Matawe Beach
Matawe Beach is located in Barangay Matawe, Dingalan, Aurora. Matawe Beach is iconic because of its many visible rock formations during low tide. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
14.) Engage in Local Communities
For foreigners, engaging in a local community in Dingalan would be a fun experience. Imagine feeding carabaos and cows, shelling a coconut, eating in a carinderia, praying in a humble church, etc! (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
15.) Engage with Other Tourists
Most tourists in Dingalan are nature- lovers and adventure-seekers. It was nice talking to them. I met tourists from Makati, from Chennai, from Cabanatuan, from Dagupan and from Quezon City. (Swipe below photo for more pictures)
16.) Food Trip
I made sure to try some of the best restaurants near me. As it is one of the tourist destinations in Central Luzon, you must expect that the restaurants are very competitive on their menu, ambience, and customer service. I plan to make a long list about the town’s top cafes/ restaurants every time I would visit Dingalan, Aurora. (Swipe below photo for more pictures) Read the blog here.
17.) Chill in Umiray Beach
You can do a bonfire, play volleyball, or meet the waves at Umiray Beach!