"Zamboanga City, Philippines" Zamboanga by elhombre30
Zamboanga Travel Guide: 6 reviews and 22 photos
Zamboanga City is in the Mindanao region, South of the Philippines. Known as the Asia's Latin City because of practicing same traditions same as with Spain, particularly the dialect called Chavacano. The Chavacano Language (popularly known as Zamboangueño Chavacano, which is based on 80% Spanish words, and 20% Italian, Portuguese, Quechua, Taino, Mexican-Indian, Nauhtl, Tagalog, Ilongo, Bisaya and other Philippine languages)
So practice the basic Chavacano by saying "Buenas Dias (good morning), Buenas tardes (good afternoon) and Gracias (thank you), Yes (si)....
September 23, 2011 aboard Cebu Pacific bound for Zamboanga City at 5:45AM.
I arrived Port of Zamboanga after 1 hour and 25minutes.
I bought the ticket 5 months ago when the Cebupacific had a PISO fare promo therefore the cost of the ticket was only 750.00 round trip. The initial plan was just to go home and spend the weekend with my family. But then I read one VT members profile (kemisteryoso) saying that he's planning to go to Pink Beach in Zamboanga. And I did research about Sta. Cruz and found out that it's indeed the only pink beach in the Philippines. Thanks kemisteryoso!
I was born and raised here but I never thought of going to that place due to security reason.
And I know where Sta. Cruz island is, since it is very visible from Zamboanga City's coastline but I didn't know how beautiful it was until I came home and visit the island. However, the process may be stressful since you have to personally appear to Naval office and do a handwritten request for Security Escort with contact numbers of family members to reach in case of emergency! Haha! This drives me crazy!!!! After which, you have to go to Lantaka Hotel and and look for Romy (point person I believe for boat assignment), then have to walk again to the the departing area in Paseo Del Mar to wait for the requested Naval Escort.
We heard that there were 3 groups left that early morning. That makes us a little bit comfortable thinking there were few in the beach at the time we arrive. I only have one companion in this trip so we have to pay the entire boat rental of 1,000.00 round trip. If you happen to be with a group then the boat rental is divided into the number of passengers.
Anyway, the naval officer who escorted us was cool! I had a photo with his armalite LOL! He told us that there was no incident of kidnapping at all in the island yet to date.
Looking at this hidden treasure of Zamboanga city makes me feel sad. Yes! I consider this hidden for most of Zamboanguenos haven't visited this island yet thinking it's just 10-15 minutes boat ride primarily because of security issues. The beach is so lovely! Its clean and seems to be well maintained by the locals living in that island. The entrance fee is only 20.00 pesos per head. This comprises 2 separate Islands just few meters away. One is called Great Sta. Cruz Island and the smaller one is called Little Sta. Cruz Island. Both is very unique with its distinct pink color which is a result of tiny pink coral fragments mixed with the white sand.
If not because of "kidnapping" and "bomb scare", I am confident that this will be one of the most visited island here in the Philippines.
- Pros:Rich in History and Culture, beautiful Sta. Cruz island
- Cons:You feel "uneasy" mainly because of the thought that you are in "Zamboanga City"
- In a nutshell:You can see a lot of man in uniform in the area.
As a native of Zamboanga, I am deeply affected every time I hear bombings incident. As much as we want to promote our... more travel advice
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