Monday, March 26, 2012

Roadtrip to Ilocos: The Fun Begins In Saud Beach

Pagudpud has been referred to as the Boracay of the North, beautiful on the day we arrived yet perfect on the subsequent days of our stay. Saud Beach is undoubtedly one of Pagudpud’s best kept secret.

Saud Beach, one of Pagudpud's best kept secret

The white sand coastline of Saud Beach was acclaimed as one of the most beautiful beach in Asia and best of the beaches in the Philippines. Imagine a beach without too many tourists, no jet skis, no speeding banana boats nor rows of anchored boat blocking the magnificent views; no strip of sleazy bars, no noise in the nightlife, no blanket of lowly or high rise hotels, and not even a mall or fastfood, just you, the sun, and the beach!

The coast of Saud Beach

The shores of Saud Beach

The surf of Saud Beach

A number of beach resorts provide services and facilities for both local and international guests. Identical to international standard in offering outstanding amenities, tour package, board & lodging and accommodations; the beach cove boast the presence of Saud Beach Resort & Hotel, Arinaya White Beach Resort, Keahana Beach Resort, Villa Del Mar Ivory Beach Resort, Apo Idon, Evangeline Beach Resort, Terra Rikka Dive Resort, and Jun & Carol Beach Resort.

The white sands of Saud Beach, although not as powdery as Boracay’s appear to be beige when wet especially in the early morning or late afternoon. The surf is gentle but gets impulsively rough once the breeze pick-up pace. The water is cool, inviting and very clean. It is not similar to the waters of the most renowned Philippine beach where floating algae, seaweeds, oil slicks or the dreaded jelly fish littered the waters and coastlines. The shores offer a gradual gradient and there is no obstruction underwater which makes it excellent and safe for swimming but there are also areas which have sudden drop-off. The coastlines are well maintained because most of the resort owners made it a habit to clean their surroundings especially the beach fronts. The intact moss-laden natural limestone formation that is festooned by elevated walkways enhance the eastern seaboard offering a magnificent view of the massive windmills lined-up along Bangui beach. The number of windmills presently operating stands at twenty (20).

The white sands of Saud Beach

The sands appear to be beige when wet

The gradual gradient of the beach

The moss-covered limestones along the rocky shores

We stayed at Emohruo Cottage which is owned and managed by Evangeline Beach Resort. The unusual name Emohruo when spelled backward means “Our Home”. The cottage is a cozy fully furnished two-bedroom bungalow which comfortably accommodated the eight (8) members of my family. It has a multi-purpose living room with cable TV, a fully equipped kitchen, and an outdoor cabana for our exclusive use. The daily rate in Emohruo Cottage is P5000 (or $116.00).

Emohruo Cottage of Evangeline Beach Resort

In front of our Emohruo Cottage

Master bedoom of Emohruo Cottage

Emohruo Beach Restobar caters to the gastronomic realization not only for guests billeted at Evangeline Beach Resort but similarly for other guests in search of sumptuous encounter with particular consideration to distinctive Ilocano recipe. Our first order of the day right after arrival at Evangeline Beach Resort was to take a late afternoon lunch. The restaurant ambiance is typical rustic setting. It is situated in the beachfront providing diners with a stunning vista of Bangui Bay. My grandchildren were quite impressed with the antiquities displayed all over the bistro particularly the wash basin called “Banga” – an earthen jar used for bearing spring water and molded-out from mud.

The wash basin was a total eye catcher

Beatriz amazed with the wash basin, gave it a try

Dominique too was quite impressed

The rustic yet elegant dining hall of Emohruo Beach Restobar

For the late lunch we ordered a steaming “palayok” (pot) of Pork Sinigang, the famous Ilocano Pinakbet topped with Bagnet, the chilly local favorite, Ginataang Bagnet – akin to the Bicol Express of Southern Luzon, and their much-acclaimed best seller, the Sizzling Seafood Rolls.

Emohruo Beach Restobar can fittingly assert dominance among other contenders, the members of my family shared our common admiration for the wonderful dining experience because of the superior quality of dish they served. The character and blend in each dish was utterly unique and healthy in its own right. It was exceptional.  The Sizzling Seafood Rolls was outstanding. The servings are generous; “hindi tipid or tinipid”. After the hearty meal, you will not require a dose of anti-acid because the full course is reasonably priced - and I mean very reasonable! And not to be disregarded, the prompt service and courteous staff of Emohruo Beach Restobar supplemented the zest of our dining experience.

The steaming "palayok" of Pork Sinigang

The Ilocano Pinakbet topped with Bagnet

Ginataang Bagnet - the Ilocano version of Bicol Express

The Sizzling Seafood Rolls - a best seller and stand-out

The restobar is also a popular watering hole for tourists and local guests alike, they are open to serve until the late hours. One of their unique cocktail is called the “Pagudpud Sling”. The brew is a concoction of rum, fresh coconut water & meat and flavored with fresh orange juice. Pagudpud Sling may claim the reputation as the sling that will really sling you down but it did not fling our constant companion, Jack Daniel's Old No. 7.

Emohruo Beach Restobar with their promotional poster of "Pagudpud Sling"

Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte is synonymous with warm tropical sunshine, azure blue skies; the most stunning turquoise crystal clear water and sparkling white sands.

Does it sound too good to be true?

It really is that beautiful!

For more information:

Evangeline Beach Resort
Saud Beach Cove, Borayoc Point,
Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte, 2919

All photos in this post is the exclusive property of White Dog Leader, Red 1 Leader & Associates. All Rights Reserved. 2012


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