After lunch, we got dressed up, boarded our taxi and proceeded another 30 kms./1.5 hours to the town of Torrijos. Upon entering the town, we made a short stopover at the nearby Pulang Lupa Battle Shrine, site of a Filipino victory during the Philippine-American War.
|Vener and Jowel at the Pulang Lupa Shrine|
Upon reaching Brgy. Poctoy, we dropped off at the 1-km. long, fine white sand Poctoy White Sand Beach. Said to be Marinduque’s best, this postcard-pretty beach, with the dormant, 871-m. high Mt. Malindig as a backdrop, was surprisingly deserted it being a Good Friday. The only other people we saw roaming the beach were 2 missionaries from the Latter Day Saints. It seems people here follow the long running rule of no bathing on Good Friday.
From the beach, we hiked north to a nearby two-room homestay rented out to visiting tourists by Hans Peter Ulrich, a German national, and his Filipina wife Marilou. The homestay was then being rented by 7 vacationing production staff (6 women and a man) of GMA 7’s Starstruck program.
The homestay’s 2 rooms were both fan-cooled, had a wide bed with mosquito netting, a bathroom with running water and a common porch and cooking station with a working stove where they can do their own cooking. As there is no refrigerator, they have to go to the market for provisions. Once this need arises, they just call or text, via mobile phone, a tricycle driver (recommended by Hans) who can bring them there.
|The homestay’s resident dog joins in|
|Starstruck in Marinduque|
Fronting the cottage is a small, coconut palm-fringed private cove of sparkling white sand and the Good Friday rule did not stop us from frolicking the inviting waters of this beautiful beachfront. Its reef drop-off, located 200 to 300 m. offshore, is ideal for snorkeling. What more can you ask? Given the opportunity in the future, I would gladly return to this idyllic beach.
Marilou’s Homestay: Brgy. Poctoy, Torrijos, Marinduque. Mobile number: (0921) 751-6930 and (0919) 485-0531.