I’ve lived in Pagadian City for more than 18 years now, however, if you would ask me if I have personally set foot in some of the tourist spots here, I would give you an honest no. It’s sad, I know, that I have been looking forward exploring some other, farther, places but not having been able to see what one’s own has. So probably this Christmas Break, I would, if given a chance, see the different must see and must go spots around the city.
But last October of 2010, I was lucky enough to go to one of the famous sites in the city, no less than the “Puting Balas”. It is called so because literally it is a stretch of white sandbar that ONLY APPEARS when its LOW TIDE.
Puting Balas is accessible everywhere since it’s located just few kilometers off the port of Pagadian. You can ask for some private motorized bancas in Brgy. San Pedro and they would price you at about Php350.00 roundtrip like blogger Dr. Wendell.
As for us, we rode in our friend’s private speedboat. We were at Tukuran then (popular beach place in Zamboanga del Sur) so it took us almost 15-20 minutes before reaching the Puting Balas but if you would depart from Pagadian Port then it would just take you around 5-10 minutes of ride.
Out of my excitement I immediately jumped off the speed boat to experience the white sand in our own land. It was impressive and the sandbar is still very virgin, in the sense that it has not been adulterated by commercial establishments. The place too was still underdeveloped which is why I am hoping that the city would develop it a bit but not too much that it would be too commercialized as this would really bring in a lot of tourists.
The sand in Puting Balas may not be as pure as Boracay’s but it is one place a Pagadianon can be proud of. It can already compete as a tourist destination.
Ecosystem is also well preserved in this area to the point that you can see crabs, seastars, and some small fishes along the beach that surrounds the sand bar.
I forgot what the name we gave to this crab.
If you’re into water sports, you can go jet skiing there.
See the jetski behind Mich.
With Kyna and behind us is a mountain range of Zamboanga del Sur, but what’s fascinating with this picture is the crystal clear water.
Truly, the Puting Balas is very admirable. Just be sure that when you go there it would be low tide because you just can’t enjoy it that much. It reminded me of my trip to Pandanon that offered almost the same quality of white sand.