Feel the romantic ambiance of Playa Papagayo, a restaurant, bar and beachside inn situated in front of the majestic Subic Bay bordered by green rolling hills. Relax, enjoy the morning rays of the sun as well as the sunset and savor their delectable food from Mexican specials, Thai or Filipino dishes.
My hubby’s virtualization project in Masinloc, Zambales with his partner Dwight had finally over. To whisk off the stress, they both enjoined their families to spend a weekend beach getaway at Playa Papagayo in Barrio Barretto, Olongapo City where they were staying for almost a week.
Friday night trip
Bus trip bound to Olongapo has no reservation so we went to Victory Liner in Pasay City around 8:30 pm to catch the 9:00 pm schedule. With two stop-overs, we had a four-hour smooth ride all the way to Olongapo Bus Terminal. We were fetched by my hubby and Dwight around 1:00 am.
We arrived at Playa Papagayo in a wee hour where it was so embarrassing to make a noise. So we immediately proceeded to our room, a Superior room with one Queen size bed, two futons, Cable TV, refrigerator, mini sala and a balcony with table and chairs. Dwight and his family occupied the Standard room which was good enough for the three of them. We couldn’t sleep because of our excitement to swim. But we have to close now our eyes to save enough energy for the next day’s activities.
We woke up rather late the next morning. The sun had already risen to the horizon. Anyway, I found delight at the sight of a wide stretch of gray sand. The water was calm and shallow. The rolling hills added an attraction to the beautiful view.
We walked on the shoreline feeling the morning sea breeze. With few people around, there’s a solitude in every corner of the beach. It was a stress-free day and though it wasn’t a pristine white sand I began to love it here! We immersed our bodies into the water and basked in sunshine
Come lunch time. The kids craved for Filipino Dish so we ordered Pinakbet, Lumpiyang Shanghai, Chopsuey and Fried Chicken. The ambiance was perfect for relaxation. We were seating comfortably on a long table facing the sea which by noontime was shining and shimmering.
Pinakbet and Lumpiyang Shanghai were flavorful. It was a hefty meal and every one of us had been satiated.
Places we visited by afternoon
Subic Bay was once a former US naval base that was converted to a beach town where freeport zone and ship building are its main industry. Aside from its beaches, there are lots of exciting places to visit in Subic Bay. But we just want to laze near the resort so we went to Subic Baywalk along the Waterfront Road.
1) Photo ops with the Subic Bay marker.
2) The huge shipping vessels docked a hundred meters away from the shore near the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority headquarters.
3) Moonbay Marina Water Park and Resort is not yet officially open for public and currently on a dry run but visitors are allowed to stroll inside.
4) The lighted Lighthouse Marina Resort from afar.
Near the area are hotels, resorts, cafes, restaurant and even casinos. Indeed the waterfront road abounds with business opportunities.
My hubby prided the big tacos of Coffeeshop Restaurant a Home of Jumbo Tacos located on the corners of the National Highway and Rizal Street and so went there for our dinner. What we ordered were Chicken Ala King, Pochero, Beef Kare Kare, regular rice and two beef big Tacos, with drinks of ice tea and service water.
Food was so tasty. Taco was really big, cheap and good. Hot sauce was added and so everyone enjoyed munching it.
Let us allow ourselves a few more indulgences. Coffee break, please? We occupied the table near the beachfront and ordered coffee and chamomile tea for me. For the kids, Shen and Mark go for hot chocolate.
After swapping of stories and laughter, we went for a walk along the shoreline. The nighttime solitude was well defined on the beach. The sky was blanketed with stars. Indeed, the serenity of the resort is a total contrast to the noise in urban cities. We had a wonderful escapade the whole day and again, I have to say it, I love it here!
Moment later, everyone settled down for the night. Good-night Subic!
My hubby and I woke up as early as 5:30 for a long walk on the shore. It was a fine sweet day and I love walking on barefoot. We passed by a crowded beach area with several tents pitched near the shore. I might say, we were lucky because, in Playa Papagayo, we almost owned the beach exclusively for us.
When we went back, my Mama was sitting peacefully on the beachfront reading a pocketbook. There were only people in the long stretch so it was just perfect to spend quiet time here.
The resort had activities through arrangements like Jet skis, Banana boat, Scuba diving and Banca rides. We were all elated to ride the Banana Boat so we arranged for a 9:00 am ride at the information desk.
We were all thrilled when the banana-shaped inflatable boat docked on the shore. Shen was almost screaming. Hahaha! We requested the operator to slow down a bit because we have an elder and two kids. My mother whose age is 66 is so willing to give it a try. We signed a waiver and later we boarded the banana boat.
We were shouting and laughing when we circled the water fast. We always asked my mother if she’s fine. Every time she yells, everyone will shout and laugh out loud. The ride lasted for almost fifteen minutes. Everyone enjoyed especially my mother! Hahaha! What an exciting experience we had!
We waded into the water until 10:30 am. By 11:30 we are ready to check-out.
When we surrendered the key, we were approached by Franc, the son of the owner of Playa Papagayo. Having stayed for several times now, he was already acquainted with my hubby. We had a short conversation with him. Franc was accommodating and a good host.
He promised me, he will teach me the right freestyle stroke when we get back to the resort.
Can’t wait to go back.
- Playa Papagayo is situated at #43 National Highway, Barrio Barretto, Olongapo. The quickest route is via SBMA’s Kalaklan gate.
- For further inquiries, call (6347) 224-1002 (Landline) or +63 (929) 661-4891
- Website: Playapapagayo.net
In getting there:
Through Public Transportation:
Ride a bus (Victory Liner) in Pasay City, Caloocan City, Sampaloc bound to Iba or Sta. Cruz, Zambales and tell the driver to alight you in front of Playa Papagayo (fare P250-P260).
Through Private Transportation:
From Manila, take the Northern Luzon Expressway (NLEX) to Subic, Clark, Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX) Clark, (Passed Dau exit). Cross the bridge and follow loop to Subic and head towards Subic-Tipo Expressway (SBMA).
– From Subic-Tipo expressway, turn right at Rizal Highway.
– From Rizal Highway, turn left at Burgos St (First traffic light after Subic Bay Yacht Club).
– Take first right at Canal St, follow this road till you reach Kalaklan gate and cross bridge.
– From Kalaklan bridge, turn left at National Highway to Subic and head towards Barretto (First Barrio), Playa Papagayo will be on your left side across Queen Clean Laundromat.
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