Travel and Tourism

Lakbay Norte: A visit to Subic Bay

Kristofer Purnell - Philstar.com
Lakbay Norte: A visit to Subic Bay
Subic Bay
Philstar.com / Kristofer Purnell

MANILA, Philippines— Subic Bay has such a rich history dating back to the early 20th century when it served as a US military base until 1991; around that time was Mount Pinatubo's historic eruption, which affected furth er the downsizing of American forces.

In the years that followed Subic Bay has become an economic zone, formally known as the Subic Special Economic and Freeport Zone, where tourists frequently visit for a weekend away from the hustling and bustling of the city.

Highways like the North Luzon Expressway and the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway have made it easier to travel to Subic, and as summer approaches the area is prepared to become a haven once more for tourists who may be looking to explore what Subic Bay has to offer.

Go bat-watching... in the day!

Fans of Batman and vampires may want to go looking for the bats that reside in the Subic Bay Freeport Zone's forests. These are the golden crowned flying foxes and the Philippine giant fruit bat, both of which are nocturnal but can be still spotted flying among the trees during the day.

Visitors do not have to worry if they see these bats flying close as their diet mostly consists of fruits, but authorities advise not to make any unwarranted disturbance.

Though nocturnal, these bats can still be spotted hanging and flying around the trees of Subic Bay while the sun is out
Philstar.com/Kristofer Purnell

Explore the bay on a yacht

Yacht rentals in Subic vary among companies, averaging at around P1,000 per person. Taking a boat out is the best way to see every point of Subic Bay, from near the ports to the middle of the sea.

Some companies also offer the option to swim and snorkel for the water bugs, while others have sunset cruises and dinner preparations for those looking for a romantic getaway.

A yacht ride is the best way to view the bay from afar!
Philstar.com/Kristofer Purnell

Dine at Meat Plus Cafe

Frequent visitors to Subic will surely have noticed this restaurant found smack dab in the heart of freeport zone, and it is highly recommended to try eating there at least once.

As their name suggests, the 30-year-old Meat Plus Cafe specializes in classic dishes that every meat lover will enjoy.

Some of their best-sellers include their Tenderloin Steak Meal, the U.S. BBQ Short Ribs, the Oven Roasted Beef Belly, and their must-try Potato Skins. And guess what? You can order their meats frozen so you can cook them at home!

For over 30 years, Meat Plus Cafe has been serving their iconic dishes to every soul that passes through Subic.
Philstar.com/Kristofer Purnell

Visit The Holy Land

One of the newer areas in Subic Bay is The Holy Land Sanctuary and Biblical Theme Park, a Catholic pilgrimmage site that is filled with religious icons.

Around the park you will life-size statues that depict the Stations of the Cross, the Mysteries of the Holy Rosary, and select moments from the life of Jesus Christ.

The Holy Land features life-size statues depicting Biblical moments, such as this one of the Last Supper.
Philstar.com/Kristofer Purnell

Go shopping, tax-free!

Because Subic Bay is a freeport zone, customers in groceries and shopping areas do not have to pay any other added taxes.

There are numerous Duty Free stores and groceries around the Subic Freeport Zone, if one is lucky they could even spot outlet stores that have ongoing discounts.




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