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Hundred Islands National Park in Pangasinan

Pangasinan Travel Guide: Home of the Hundred Islands

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Hundred Islands in Pangasinan, Philippines

Explore the scenic province of Pangasinan, home of the famous Hundred Islands, and get a taste of its local culture and cuisine. Find out how to get there, where to go, which restaurants to try, and where to stay in this travel guide. 

Pangasinan, a province located in the northwestern part of Luzon in the Philippines, has been associated with the Hundred Islands, a natural spectacle of 124 islets scattered stunningly over the waters of Lingayen Gulf.

It has graced the pages of numerous travel magazines and postcards, has always been one of the top Pangasinan tours, and is one of the top island-hopping destinations in the Philippines

However, Pangasinan is more than just being home to the Hundred Islands. Pangasinan also boasts several magnificent beaches covered with fine cream-colored sands, islets with circling sandbars, majestic waterfalls and caves, heritage towns, and rich gastronomic culture.

Because of the sheer number of places to visit in Pangasinan, it is very easy to fill up a four to five-day travel itinerary just by exploring this province. 

Pangasinan City Hall

For first-time travelers planning a vacation to Pangasinan, this travel guide should help you plan your trip on where to go, where to stay, and what to do while you’re there.

Best Time to Go to Pangasinan

Balingasay River in Bolinao, PangasinanGenerally a sunny-weathered province, Pangasinan is an ideal destination all year long, except for instances of typhoon and southwest monsoon rains during the wet season from June to early October.

December to May | Dry and Peak Season

Tourism arrivals peak on the summer months of March, April, and May, when the beaches of Pangasinan becomes one of the most popular holiday setting in the island of Luzon. 

Additionally, cultural festivals are held every month in different towns in Pangasinan. The two most attended revelries are the Bangus Festival and Pista'y Dayat.

Bangus Festival | April

Named after the national fish of the Philippines, The Bangus Festival, pays homage to the milkfish (bangus) aquaculture industry that has powered the local economy of the province for the longest time. Held in the city of Dagupan every April, the celebration usually lasts up to 10 days.

Bangus Festival attractions you should watch out for include a colorful street dancing competition called the Gilon-Gilon ed Baley, which is participated by contingents from the 31 barangays of Dagupan City.

Adorned with vibrant costumes and creative milkfish figures, the performers put on an entertaining display of showmanship as they re-enact the "Gilon" (a local term for harvesting bangus) while parading the streets of Dagupan. 

Aside from the street parade, you can also witness other cultural events, local art fairs, sports competitions, parties, and a cooking contest featuring chefs demonstrating the hundred different ways of cooking bangus.

Pista’y Dayat | May

Celebrated every 1st of May in Lingayen, Pangasinan, Pista'y Dayat—meaning "Sea Festival"—is a festival intended to express gratitude to the year's bountiful sea harvest.

A medley of activities is held the whole month of May highlighted by a parade of local boats called "Banca Parada", happening along the Limahong Channel of the Agno River. 

Other activities include triathlon events, orchestra competition, art fairs, community coastal clean-up and other variety shows and sporting competitions.

How to Get to Pangasinan

Traveling to Pangasinan is very easy and convenient, thanks to several bus companies operating in different terminals. Travel time from Metro Manila varies from 4-6 hours depending on which town you are visiting. Here are some of the most popular ways to go to Pangasinan:

By Bus

Bus ride going to Pangasinan

Traveling by bus is the most widely practiced mode of transportation going to Pangasinan, because of the presence of many bus terminals serving Manila-Pangasinan route.

Here are some of the bus options of going to Pangasinan from the two main hubs in Metro Manila: Cubao and Pasay.

From Cubao in Quezon City

Cubao is one of the major transportation hub in Metro Manila. Major bus companies like Victory Liner, 5-Star Bus Company, Dagupan Bus Co., Cisco Bus and First North Luzon Transit provides daily trips from Cubao, Quezon City to various stops in Pangasinan like Bolinao, Dagupan, Alaminos, Lingayen and Urdaneta 24 hours a day.

These bus companies offer regular, premier, and deluxe-class seats. Although the deluxe-class seats are offered only once or twice a day, most of the trips throughout the day are regular and premier bus trips.

From Pasay City

Victory Liner operates daily trips from Pasay to Dagupan and Lingayen while 5-Star Bus Company serves the Pasay to Dagupan and Bolinao.

Another bus option Cisco Bus offers bus service to Manaoag, San Fabian, and Mangaldan in Pangasinan from Pasay. Like in Cubao, these bus companies offer regular, premier, and limited deluxe-seats. 

By Car

Driving to Pangasinan has become faster and convenient since the construction of the TPLEX and NLEX-SCTEX route. Today, you can come from anywhere in Luzon and head straight to Pangasinan by using these expressways.

You can drive or rent a car and use mobile driving apps such as Waze or Google Maps to guide you to your destination in Pangasinan.

Getting Around Pangasinan

Even if you travel to Pangasinan without driving a private vehicle, it is still very convenient to get around the province. Different modes of transportation like jeepneys, buses, and tricycles are present in every town and municipalities.

In some areas, UV Shuttle Vans are also available but at slightly higher fares compared to buses and jeepneys. If you are traveling by a private vehicle, you’ll have an easier time going around as almost all of Pangasinan is connected by well-paved highways and city streets.

Coming from Manila, one can take a ride from any of these bus liners: Victory Liner, Solid North Bus, Five Star Bus, Philippine Rabbit, and Dagupan Bus. Buses from Manila heading to Anda, Dagupan, Alaminos, Bolinao, Agno, Urdaneta and more, depart multiple times daily.

By Jeep

Philippine jeepneyYou can simply find a jeepney to ride just by standing at the side of the main roads in Pangasinan. There are numerous jeepneys plying the roads of Pangasinan either going around the town or to another town.

The easier way is to head to the town center where most jeepney terminals traveling to the next town is located. Familiarizing jeepney routes is easy as the highway leading to the next towns are in just one straight path. The locals in Pangasinan are very friendly so don’t be shy to ask directions from them.

By Bus

Same thing with the jeepney, buses pass by the national highway of Pangasinan numerous times throughout the day. You can hop from one town to the next just by waiting by the side of the road or going to the town’s bus terminals.  

By Tricycle

If you are exploring a town in Pangasinan, the best way is to take the tricycle as they can enter through smaller streets.

Where to Stay in Pangasinan

Sitio Amore at Puerto del Sol in Bolinao, Pangasinan

Photo by Puerto del Sol

As a province laden with stunning beach destinations, Pangasinan has seen an increase in demand for guests’ accommodations in the last several years.

While the concept of backpacker hostels is still in infancy stages in the province, you can still find other alternatives in the form of vacation home rentals, inns and hotels, beach resorts, and luxury hotels. 

Types of Accommodations

The accommodation choices in Pangasinan has seen rapid growth in the last several years. Fortunately for all travelers, the type of lodgings found in Pangasinan caters to all types of travelers. From budget to mid-range to luxury stays, you can easily find a place to stay that will fit your budget.

Beach Resorts

Beach resorts are the leading type of accommodations in Pangasinan. Thanks to the number of beach destinations in the province, you will never experience any difficulty in looking for a place to stay.

Luxury Hotels

If you are fancying a stay at a luxury hotel and resort, then the growing number of luxurious beach resorts and hotels in Pangasinan will surely please you. As tourism arrivals continue to grow, the upscale hotel and resort industry in Pangasinan is also expanding.

According to online reviews, many of these high-end beach resorts in Pangasinan even rival those found in Boracay and Cebu.

Vacation Home Rentals

This option is perfect when you are traveling with a big group of family or friends as you can have an entire house to yourself. Check out leading vacation home listings online to find the best one suited for your group.

Lavish beach houses in and around Bolinao, Alaminos, Anda, and the surrounding parts of Pangasinan can be rented from a few days to a week and even for months.

Budget Hotels and Inns

There are many small budget hotels and inns situated all over Pangasinan—especially in the touristy towns of Alaminos, Bolinao, Dagupan, Anda, and Urdaneta. Most of these budget inns offer the basic amenities of single or double beds in small private rooms. 

Accommodation Highlights 

It is very easy to find a perfect accommodation in Pangasinan that will fit your budget. If you are journeying as part of a big group, then staying at a transient home or a vacation house shall be a great idea.

Otherwise, if you are traveling as a couple, solo or in a small group, you can also easily make a selection from these wide-ranging choices that cover the luxury, mid-range, and budget accommodations category.

Luxury Accommodations

Puerto Del Sol (Bolinao)

Mansion Villa at Puerto del Sol in Bolinao, PangasinanPhoto by Puerto del Sol

Located in a beachfront property in Bolinao, Puerto Del Sol is spread out perfectly offering privacy and leisure space for you to lounge around after a day of beach exploration in the province. You can choose from their different accommodation options of treehouse villas, poolside cabanas and private rooms as your home in Bolinao.

They also have a private beachfront where you can swim and bathe in the sun in the utmost seclusion. The resort's features include a game center, swimming pool and outdoor jacuzzi, a bahay kubo (nipa hut) spa massage center, and the much-raved Cafe Del Sol and Lap Laya Restaurant among others.

Monarch Hotel (Calasiao)

Guest room at Monarch Hotel in Calasiao, Pangasinan

Photo by Monarch Hotel

Raved to be as the classiest hotel in Pangasinan—thanks to its eye-popping Victorian-style architecture evoking the fine taste of Victorian-era Monarchy, the Monarch Hotel in Calasiao, is designed to provide every bit of a 5-star service rivaling even the best hotels in Metro Manila.

Monarch Hotel features a few in-house restaurants and bars, a large outdoor swimming pool, a fitness gym among others. Monarch Hotel is located 7 minutes away from Calasiao Church, 18 minutes from Dagupan Plaza, and 30 minutes away from Bonuan Beach.

El Puerto Marina Beach Resort & Spa (Lingayen)

Aquatica Marine Water Park at El Puerto Marina Beach Resort & Spa, Pangasinan

Nestled in the picturesque Lingayen Gulf Coast, El Puerto Marina Beach Resort and Vacation Club attracts numerous guests all-yearlong because of its homely rustic design evoking provincial living, fine white sandy beachfront and a long shoreline.

The resort's Aquatica Marine Water Park has a few swirling slides and a big outdoor pool perfect for guests of all ages to bond together. The beachside towns of Bolinao and Alaminos are all within under an hour drive from the resort.

Punta Riviera Resort (Bolinao)

La Marea Room at Punta Riviera Resort in Bolinao, PangasinanPhoto by Punta Riviera Resort

Priding itself for its sustainable and eco-friendly practices, this resort is situated near the Malino River—the river that meets the sea. It provides guests not only with stylish post-modern rooms, but also with a magnificent view of the sunset and seaside scenery.

Punta Riviera Resort sits in a location only 20 minutes away from Cape Bolinao Lighthouse, Enchanted Cave and the Patar White Sand Beach. Guests can choose from the resort's 12 room types all designed to provide maximum convenience and comfort.

Billa La Marea and La Punta Suite can accommodate 5-6 guests while the El Grande, Tio Pepe and Tia Marea can house 10-20 guests.

Birdland Beach Club (Bolinao)

Family Cabana at Birdland Beach Club in Bolinao, PangasinanPhoto by Birdland Beach Club

Nestled on a sprawling 2-hectare of lush tropical gardens adjacent to a beachfront laden with fine white sands of Bolinao, Birdland Beach Club's setting is just what you need to experience a much-needed escape from the big city.

Accommodations include uniquely designed elevated bamboo huts adorned with hammocks and open-air bathrooms. Mostly made of rustic materials and powered by solar energy, this resort also serves organic food as part of its eco-friendly practices.  

VEUE Beach Cabins (Bolinao)

Cabin at VEUE Beach Cabins in Bolinao, PangasinanPhoto by VEUE Beach Cabins

Offering a cabin-style accommodation designed after a typical Filipino beach house, VEUE Beach Cabins provides more reason for you to consider staying here. Each cabin comes with your own porch where you can view the sea, a king-sized bed, living area, a dining area with fully furnished kitchen and a bathroom.

A long swimming pool is laid out in the center of the resorts making it an ideal place to hang out and mingle with the other guests. VEUE Beach Cabins is also a few minutes away from the other attractions in Bolinao and an hour tops from Alaminos, Dagupan and other beach destinations in Pangasinan like Anda.

Mid-Range Accommodations

Hotel Le Duc (Dagupan)

Presidential Suite at Hotel Le Duc in Dagupan, PangasinanPhoto by Hotel Le Duc

Hotel Le Duc is a 30-room hotel managed and owned by the Lyceum-Northwestern University. Because most of its staff and management are from the College of Tourism and Hospitality Management of the University, expect quality service from students who will play important roles in the hospitality industry in the future.

Catering to business and leisure travelers, Hotel Le Duc provides a decent and cheaper alternative to travelers wanting to explore this part of Pangasinan without suffering quality and comfort.

Asia Novo Boutique Hotel

Located in the city center of Alaminos—the jump-off for the Hundred Islands National Park—this simple hotel slash transient house offers well-appointed and spacious rooms at a very modest rate. Perfect for travelers opting for a mid-range type of accommodation. Asia Novo is also very accessible to all types of public transportation in the province.

Budget Accommodations

D' Little Egg Hostel & Cafe

This small family-run hostel situated in downtown Urdaneta is a favorite of many budget-conscious travelers. It offers modest rooms that comes with a small bathroom, a double bed, an air-conditioning unit, and a small side table. Plus, karaoke songs are free and "silog" (fried rice and egg combo) breakfasts are available to order throughout the day.

What to See and Do in Pangasinan

Primarily known as a beach destination, Pangasinan has also plenty of attractions to offer to travelers who are looking for more other than enjoying a fun time under the sun.

There are other interesting tourist spots to see in the province of Pangasinan namely heritage towns, old churches, museums and other great outdoor attractions like caves, lagoons and waterfalls.

To help you list down the places you might want to visit in Pangasinan, here are some of the must-visit places to see in the province.

Go Island Hopping at the Hundred Islands National Park

Kayaking at the Hundred Islands National Park in Pangasinan

You can never tell you've been to Pangasinan if you haven't done an island hopping tour of Hundred Islands. It is declared a National Park covering more than 120 islands with Governor Island, Children's Island, and Quezon Island being the most frequented spots.

Explore the Islands and Beaches of Anda 

The coastal town of Anda is home to a long shoreline of white sandy beaches. It is also the jump-off point to several secluded islands and sandbars such as Panacalan Island, Tondol Beach, Tanduyong Island, Cory Islet, and Ninoy Sandbar. Allotting one whole day for island hopping is enough to see all the sights here. 

Take a Stroll Along Lingayen Gulf Baywalk 

Follow the track of Lingayen's long shoreline over the well-paved Baywalk Boulevard route during a Lingayen sightseeing tour. Locals love to hang out here to jog, walk, and relax while staring at the idyllic ocean scenery.

Several restaurants, cozy bars and charming cafes also line up the side of the baywalk. In case you get tired from walking, you can easily grab a coffee and chill. There are plans to expand the Baywalk up to La Union in the coming years.

Have an Exciting Dip at Cabangaoan White Beach and Tidal Pools

The town of Burgos is where you can find another stretch of white beach called Cabangaoan. Making this place exceptional is the existence of the so-called "Death Pool”.

Surrounded by boulder formations, swimmers frolic for thrills in the tidal pool by riding the rising tides caused by the crashing huge waves. A side trip to nearby Cacupangan Cave will gift you with an exciting spelunking adventure.

Marvel at the Umbrella Rocks and Abagatanen Beach in Agno

In the quaint town of Agno, Pangasinan, a unique set of rock formations carved by the natural sea elements appear beautifully out-of-place. Located a few steps from Sabangan Beach, these bunch of huge boulders are called "Umbrella Rocks" because of its shapes.

A short distance away from the Umbrella Rocks and facing the West Philippine Sea, is another beach destination called Abagatanen. A small fishing village is located right at the white sandy shore of the beach.

Apart from enjoying a quiet day at this remote beach, visiting this place also gives you the chance to witness daily scenes of local life.

Enjoy a Solitude Day at Colibra Island

If you are looking for an isolated beach suitable for some beach camping experience, then the setting of Colibra Island will meet your expectations.

Situated off the coast of the coastal town of Dasol, this island is the perfect place to spend a night camping under the stars. Colibra (sometimes called “Culebra”) is a small rocky islet surrounded by white sands and a very inviting clear water. 

Discover Cabacungan Cove

Another attraction in the town of Dasol situated in the western part of Balas Nagtaros Island off the shores of Tambobong Beach, is the cove of Cabacungan. Here, you will delight at the sight of amazing rocky outcrops spread out on the shores of the beach.

A few of these rock formations hides small caves filled with natural pool exiting to the open sea. Be sure to also stop by Crocodile Island on the way here coming from nearby Colibra Island.

Lounge at Patar White Beach 

Patar White Beach in PangasinanOther than the Hundred Islands, Patar White Beach is considered as one of the best beaches in Pangasinan. Despite gaining popularity in the last several years, the beach still retains a pristine vibe.

Its fine white sands and clear waters will surely entice you for an extended frolicking under the sun—so don’t forget to apply all-natural sunblock. A short walk along the beach will take you to an area covered by magnificent rock formations protruding out from the sea.

Explore the Enchanted Cave

Travelers taking a dip at the Enchanted Cave in PangasinanWhen traveling to Bolinao, travelers always include this cave in their itinerary. As its name suggest, you will be going inside an enchanting cave with an emerald-colored natural spring pool where you can take a soothing dip. Enclosed by wonderful karst formations and fossilized glittering corals, it really gives justice to its name. 

Have a Refreshing Swim at Bolinao Falls

Bolinao Falls in PangasinanSome 30 minutes from the town center of Bolinao, curtain-like waterfalls as high as 30 feet cascades into a spacious crystal clear natural pool.

The best time to visit this waterfall is during the months after the monsoon season as the waterfalls slightly dry up during the summer months. Otherwise, on a good day with the strong water current, Bolinao Falls appear as one of the most beautiful in Luzon.

Plunge Into Antong Falls

Located in Sison, Pangasinan, Antong Falls used to be a favorite pit-stop of hiking enthusiasts heading to Baguio City. It has an inviting turquoise-colored natural pool and multi-layered cascading waters. Today, Antong Falls is almost included in every adventure itineraries of travelers visiting Pangasinan. 

Take a Dip in Busay Falls 

In the forested hills of Brgy. Calebeng, Bani in Pangasinan, hides a stunning waterfall called Busay. Surrounded by towering trees and shrubbery, a dip into its clear waters shall provide you a calming experience.

This is a good side trip when coming from Bolinao as the barangay situates along the highway. Just ask the bus driver to drop you off at Tiep Elementary School. From there you can ride a tricycle or a habal-habal going to the waterfall's jump-off place.

See the Sunset at Cape Bolinao Lighthouse

Cape Bolinao Lighthouse in PangasinanTowering 351-feet atop a hill overlooking Patar White Beach, the 1903 American-built Cape Bolinao Lighthouse is the perfect place for you to glee at the majestic panoramic view of the surrounding blue waters of Bolinao.

If you are into photography, then this is also the best place to shoot time-lapse photography of the magnificent sunset.

Go on a Food tour at Dagupan City

Store of local food products in Pangasinan such as Bangus, Calasiao Puto and Tupig

Known among foodies as the "Kitchen of the North", Dagupan City not only boasts of gastronomical delight, but it is also a city where travelers can enjoy a Pangasinan food tour with a pinch of culture and history.

Among the many sights to see in Dagupan City are Bonuan Tondaligan Beach, Dagupan Museum, Pantal River, Dagupan Cathedral, General Douglas MacArthur's World War II headquarters and of course, the many foodie destinations.

Don't forget to buy some Bonuan Boneless Bangus, Calasiao Puto, Tupig and Gourmet Tuyo for pasalubong.  

Learn Salt Farming at Pacific Salt Farm

The name of Pangasinan came from the word "Pang-asinan" which means "place of salt", because salt-farming used to be one of the biggest industries in the province. The Pacific Farms in Bolinao, conducts Agri-Eco tours for tourists wanting to learn more about the intricate yet fascinating process of salt farming, harvesting and packaging.

As the largest salt producer in the Philippines, producing more than 15,000 metric tons of salt each year, there's no better place to learn about salt farming than at Pacific Salt Farm. Their Agri-Eco tour takes visitors to at least six stations in the farm concluding with hands-on experience in harvesting and stockpiling of salt. 

Say a Prayer at Our Lady of Manaoag Church

Pangasinan is also famous for being a pilgrimage tour destination. One of the most visited churches in the country, the Minor Basilica of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary of Manaoag is a popular pilgrimage site among Catholics.

The image of the Mother Mary housed inside the church is said to perform miracles to churchgoers who pray for their personal intentions.

Manaoag Church is also the site of an unusual religious practice where new car owners drive here to have their vehicle blessed by the priest. Outside the church, one can buy one of Pangasinan's famous dessert, the tupig (local rice cake).

Visit Saint James the Great Parish Church

Saint James the Great Parish Church in Bolinao, PangasinanSince it was first built in 1587, the Saint James the Great Parish Church has undergone numerous renovations due to numerous natural calamities such as earthquakes, typhoons, and fire. The current structure built in the late 19th century remains a beautiful example of High Renaissance architecture.

Aside from its visual appeal, the church is considered as one of the most historical churches in the country. Still unconfirmed historical accounts suggest that the first mass on Philippine soil was held near the location of Saint James the Great Parish Church in 1324.

Have Fun at Balungao Hilltop Adventure

Situated at the foot of the 382-meter-high Mount Balungao, the Balungao Hilltop Adventure offers a thrilling 1.4-kilometer-long zipline ride. Said to be one of the longest in the country, this zipline takes you to a breathtaking ride over a picturesque forest setting.

This adventure park located in the municipality of Balungao, also offers ATV, mountain biking rides, and bungee trampolines to its guests.

What to Eat and Drink in Pangasinan

Seafood platter in a local restaurant in PangasinanBeing a known seafood haven, it’s easy to assume that Pangasinan's cuisine is limited to dishes that feature the bounties of the ocean. This is far from the truth, as the province’s culinary scene is known as one of the most appetizing and diverse in the island of Luzon.

Each town has its own specialty and as you eat your way through the province, you’re sure to discover heaps of gastronomical delights—aside from gaining a bit of weight.

Local Cuisine

Local fish paste called bagoong made by locals of Pangasinan

Traditional Pangasinense cuisine is known for the use of "bagoong" (fish paste) either as a condiment or a main ingredient. Many travelers always make it a point to stop by the town of Lingayen to buy bottles of bagoong as pasalubongs. 

Compared to the typical bangus cultivated in freshwater, the ones on Pangasinan are bred and harvested in the salt water of the Lingayen Gulf. This gives the milkfish a saltier taste with lesser stench—making it an ideal type of fish to cook in a variety of ways such as fried, grilled, or to be added to other dishes like sinigang or pinakbet.

The coastal towns of Bolinao, Dagupan and Alaminos are where you can find rows of restaurants serving an assortment of bangus dishes and other seafood staples.

Other Pangasinan food you shouldn't miss out are Alaminos Longanisa, Kaleskesan (Pangasinan's version of Papaitan), Bagisen (sort of like the Dinuguan but cooked with a local twist) and the Pigar-Pigar (beef or carabao meat and liver jerky served with onions and cabbage). 

Pangasinense Sweets

Binungey is a sticky rice delicacy soaked in coconut milk and slow-steamed in a bamboo shellNumerous towns in Pangasinan are proud of their own native Pangasinense desserts. The town of Calasiao is known for its sugary bite-sized puto and kutsinta, Mangaldan for its peanut brittle while Urdaneta is where you can find the best tupig, Pangasinan's version of a Filipino rice cake made mainly of soaked glutinous rice, coconut milk, and muscovado sugar.

Be sure not to miss out on tasting the “Binungey” when you pass by the towns of Anda and Bolinao. This sticky rice delicacy is soaked in coconut milk and slow-steamed inside a bamboo shell over fire. It is best paired with a slice of ripe mango. People always compare it to Thailand’s Mango Sticky Rice. 

Recommended Best Restaurants and Bars

Food in Pangasinan is widely considered as among the best in Luzon and Philippines cuisine. Thanks to its coastal areas where fishermen provide an endless supply of fresh catch and restaurants that tastefully fused local and regional cuisines, the food scene in Pangasinan grew to be a diverse one.

To help you select the best places to eat in Pangasinan, here is a shortlist of some of the highly-recommended restaurants that you can include in your Pangasinan itinerary:

Matutina's

Seafood platter at Matutina's in Pangasinan

Photo by Matutina's

Fashioned in traditional "dampa" (hut) setting, this culinary icon in Pangasinan was named after the wacky character of Matutina from the 80's famed sitcom "John en Marsha".

Matutina’s serves a medley of Filipino food such as pusit kilawen, crispy hipon, sinigang na malaga, buttered talaba, pinakbet, pigar-pigar, bangus sisig, buttered spicy shrimps and more. Matutina’s is located along Nancayasan Highway in Urdaneta near the TPLEX exit. 

Great Taste Seafood and Pigar-Pigar

You won't run out of excuses not to dine at Great Taste Seafood and Pigar-Pigar. When in Pangasinan, you must taste one of the province’ main delicacy; the Pigar-Pigar. And second, this restaurant is known for serving the best pigar-pigar.

You shouldn't overlook this establishment that started as a small eatery back in the early 2000s. Dig in and feast on a selection of beef, chicken, and carabao meat available in Original, Special, and Premium serving sizes and flavors. The Great Taste Seafood and Pigar-Pigar is located in Gomez Street in Dagupan City.

Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina

Imagine what the taste would be like if you blend Mexican cuisine with a twist of Pangasinense cookery. The answer comes by way of the appetizing culinary treats served by Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina.

Located in Perez Boulevard in Dagupan City, Silantro has become the go-to-place for anyone craving for some Latin-inspired comfort food like Beef nachos, callente wings, lamb chop, Silantro burrito, chicken callente, beef quesadillas and grilled mahi-mahi just to state a few.

Hardin sa Paraiso

Hardin sa Paraiso Grill and Restaurant in PangasinanPhoto by Hardin sa Paraiso

Apart from its mouth-watering servings of seafood, steaks, vegetables, and other native dishes, Hardin sa Paraiso adds a dash of charm to your dining experience with its homey ambiance courtesy of the well-maintained garden and its structure made from forest materials.

Situated along the highway in Brgy Lelemaan, Manaoag, Hardin sa Paraiso is the perfect place to dine after a solemn visit to the nearby Our Lady of Manaoag Church. Some of their best-sellers include: Kare-kareng Ox Tail, Grilled Blue Marlin, Binusog na Pusit, Paradise Fried Rice, Relenong Bangus.

Cuisinero Garden

Sounding like a play on the word "kusinero" (chef), Cuisinero also meant to signify the representation of global cuisine under one roof. True to it, a selection of worldwide cuisines from Moroccan, Mediterranean, Chinese, American, and even South American constitutes the rich menu of this restaurant.

You can't go wrong with a choice of Moroccan Salad, Buffalo Wings, Osso Buco, Poached Surgeon Fish, Chicken Parmesan and more. Cuisinero can be found along MacArthur Hi-way in Urdaneta City.

Maxine by the Sea

Maxine Grill Platter at Maxine by the Sea in Alaminos, PangasinanPhoto by Maxine by the Sea

After your Hundred Islands tours in Alaminos, load up on Maxine by the Sea’s extensive buffet selection and sumptuous platters of seafood and grilled dishes. Decked over the shallow waters off the port of Lucap, it arouses an authentic island feasting vibe.

Guaranteeing to make your dining experience more memorable is the surrounding stunning scenery of the Hundred Islands from afar. 

Casa Bella House of Ribs and Seafoods 

You might as well hum a happy song as you down a plateful of baby back ribs from Casa Bella because getting a bite of their specialty ribs makes one instantly satisfied. Not called as the "House of Ribs and Seafoods" for nothing, Casa Bella, which is located at 75 Brgy. Manzon, San Carlos City.

They also serve other house favorites such as Sinigang na Salmon Head, Crispy Pata, Dinuguan ala Kapampangan, Crunchy Hito, and more. But of course, the real star is always the Baby Back Ribs—so it’s wise to include it in your order. 

Jacobo’s Seafood Grill

In a province known for seafood, expect to see a few floating restaurants. One that stands out the most is Jacobo's Seafood Grill in Dagupan City.

Built on stilts over a bangus fish pond, this restaurant serves a tasteful mix of Filipino and Cajun cuisines. Bestsellers such as Cajun shrimp, boneless bangus, pork binagoongan and coconut shrimps are just some of the favorites.

Kuya Max Restogrill

What started as a modest side-street carinderia in 2003 has now grown to become one of Dagupan's most popular restaurants.

Some of their bestsellers includes: crispy hito, sizzlling pork bingoongan, kare-kareng gulay, spicy clam soup, pigar-pigar, bangus max, seafood tinolo and more. Kuya Max Restogrill is located along De Venecia Road in Lucao District, Dagupan City.

Practical Information and Tips

For a hassle-free and convenient trip to Pangasinan, it's important to read up on these practical tips. These will be very useful especially if it’s your first time in Pangasinan.

Currency

All establishments in Pangasinan accept payments in Philippine Pesos (PHP). Many resorts and restaurants are also accepting payments through credit cards and debit cards. To be sure, always ask the staff if they accept card payment or not.

For traveling to other towns and municipalities using public transportation, it is advisable to pay in smaller bills. Most towns of Pangasinan have banks and ATMs found in their respective downtown areas and locations near major beach resorts. 

Language

Despite having a distinct language of their own called "Salitan Pangasinan", most people in Pangasinan are multilingual who can speak several languages such as; Filipino, English and Ilocano.

If you want to greet them in their language, you can try these easy phrases: To say, "Good Morning", you would say "Masantos ya Kabwasan"; while "Good Afternoon" is "Masantos ya Ngarem". Masantos means good if it pertains to time but when expressing good as in "good job", you can say "maong".

Sample Itinerary in Pangasinan

Pilgrimage Island in Hundred Islands, PangasinanPangasinan is an idyllic choice for people looking to unwind. Here, you can enjoy three-days of bliss swimming in the crystal-clear beaches of Bolinao and Anda, as well as visiting the famed Hundred Islands in Alaminos.

This will also provide you a wonderful introduction to the sights, cuisines, and culture of the province that will surely entice you to come back for a longer period. Here is a sample itinerary perfect for a 3-day holiday in Pangasinan: 

Day 1: Arrival + Church + Cave + Waterfalls + Beach + Rock Formations + Lighthouse

  • 07:00 AM - Arrival at the hotel

  • 07:30 AM - Check-in and breakfast

  • 09:00 AM - 5:00 pm - Sightseeing tour: Saint James Church, Wonderful Cave, Bolinao Waterfalls, lunch at Patar Beach, Patar Rock formations, and sunset at Cape Bolinao Lighthouse

  • 06:00 PM - Return to hotel to freshen up

  • 07:00 PM - Dinner, socials, and lights out

Day 2: Island Hopping in Anda

  • 07:00 AM - Wake-up call and breakfast

  • 08:30 AM - Travel from Bolinao to Anda

  • 09:30 AM - Arrival at Anda, Hotel check-in

  • 10:30 AM - Start Anda island hopping tour

  • 03:00 PM - Back at the hotel

  • 04:00 PM - Free time until dinner

Day 3: Island Hopping in Hundred Islands

  • 07:00 AM - Wake-up call and breakfast

  • 08:30 - 09:30 AM - Travel from Anda to Alaminos

  • 09:30 AM - 10:30 AM - Buy food at the market. Go to Lucap Wharf to register and rent a boat.

  • 11:00 AM - Hundred Islands island hopping tour

  • 05:00 PM - Back to Tourism Center at Lucap Wharf

  • 06:00 PM - Freshen up and dinner

  • 07:00 PM - Travel back to Manila

Start Planning Your Pangasinan Trip!

Hundred Islands National Park in Pangasinan

Escape to the islands and beaches of Pangasinan! Other than reveling at the many beautiful beaches of Pangasinan, you can also immerse in the rich culture and grab a bite of the tasty local cuisine of Pangasinan. Visit heritage towns and numerous old Spanish Colonial Churches as you make your way across the province. 

As one of the biggest provinces in the Philippines, the list of places to see and things do in this destination is very long. From spectacular beaches and secluded islands to mesmerizing waterfalls and historic towns, there's an abundance of places to explore in this province. 

Be sure to bookmark this Pangasinan travel guide to plan your trip accordingly. Check out our Pangasinan tours and activities that you can add to your itinerary.