A quiet surf culture blends with lively urban vibes, San Fernando is known for its historic significance and authentic street food. Its waterfalls, ruins and temples will keep you busy for days, but most people come for the magnetising sunsets.
Things to do
Bauang Beach is an adventurer’s haven, full of opportunities for outdoor adventure, including kayaking, surfing, snorkelling, swimming and scuba diving. San Fernando is a hotspot for surfers, so rent a board and hit the waves or sign up for a lesson from one of the local surf shops.
San Fernando’s Ma-Cho temple is the biggest Taoist temple in the world outside of China. Retreat inside for some quiet reflection or spend some time admiring the impressive architecture of the seven-storey tiered edifices. Feast your eyes on motifs of Taipei lions and dragons and be sure to behold the famous towering arch and meditation room.
If you want to live like a local, visit San Fernando’s Night Market. Tempt your taste buds on balut and fish balls or satiate your sweet tooth by indulging in stalls offering fruit and desserts.
When you want a break from the heat, head to Occalong Falls, where you can spend the day in fantastic natural landscapes or take a dip in the shallow pool. Pack a picnic or embark on the uphill hike, a short and scenic journey.
The nearest airport to San Fernando is the Clark International Airport located in Angeles, less than 30 kilometres outside the city. Long distance buses also travel into the area from nearby metropolises. Once in San Fernando, organise a driver or rent a jeepney or motorbike to get around.