Tourists flock to Hundred Islands on Apec week
LINGAYEN, Pangasinan—Tourists swarmed the Hundred Islands National Park (HINP) in Alaminos City last week when the government declared a weeklong holiday in Metro Manila for the hosting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Leaders’ Summit, a tourism official said on Monday.
Solomon Tablang, officer in charge of the Alaminos tourism office, said from Nov. 16 to 21, some 7,777 foreign and domestic tourists arrived in the park. This was more than four times higher than the 1,776 tourists that visited the HINP during the same period last year.
Tablang said most of these visitors came from Metro Manila.
The HINP, which consists of 123 islands, is 242 kilometers from Metro Manila and can be reached after a five-hour drive. From Barangay Lucap in Alaminos, the HINP is a 30-minute boat ride away.
Tablang said the number of tourists breached the 1,000 mark on Nov. 18. The highest number of tourists in the park was 2,082, which was recorded on Nov. 19. Some 265 foreigners visited the islands during the week.
Tablang said with the development of six more islands—Lopez, Marcos, Clave, Romulo, Mayor’s and Virgin islands—overcrowding has not been a problem.
In the past, tourists can be accommodated only on Quezon, Governor’s and Children’s islands, which were the only islands that had picnic sheds, rest rooms and facilities for an overnight stay.
Tablang said tourists hopped from one island to another and did water activities, such as snorkeling and helmet diving. The park also offers zip lines and trekking activities. Gabriel Cardinoza, Inquirer Northern Luzon
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