Hundred Islands Overview

Hundred Islands National Park is a unique natural attraction located in Alaminos City, Pangasinan, in the northern region of the Philippines. Officially designated as a national park in 1940, it spans an area of around 16.76 square miles (43.4 square kilometers) across the Lingayen Gulf. The park is famed for its collection of 123 natural islands and islets, many of which are uninhabited and remain in their pristine state. These islands, believed to be around two million years old, are spread over an area of 1,844 hectares and are the result of ancient coral reefs that have emerged from the sea due to tectonic and sea-level changes over millennia.

The islands vary greatly in size and shape, with some featuring towering limestone cliffs, while others are adorned with white sandy beaches and lush vegetation. The clear blue waters surrounding the islands are teeming with marine life, making the park a popular destination for snorkeling, scuba diving, and kayaking. Among the most visited islands are Governor Island, which offers panoramic views of the park; Quezon Island, known for its recreational activities; and Children’s Island, ideal for families due to its shallow waters.

Hundred Islands National Park is not just a haven for beach lovers and adventure seekers; it also holds ecological significance as a protected area, providing sanctuary to various species of birds, fish, and marine creatures. Conservation efforts are in place to preserve the natural beauty and biodiversity of the islands.

Visitors can explore the park through guided boat tours, which offer opportunities to hop between islands, swim in secluded beaches, and discover hidden caves. The park also features designated areas for picnics, camping, and overnight stays in simple accommodations, allowing visitors to experience the tranquility of nature amidst this remarkable archipelago.

With its breathtaking landscapes, rich biodiversity, and opportunities for adventure and relaxation, Hundred Islands National Park is a testament to the natural beauty of the Philippines and a must-visit destination for nature enthusiasts and travelers alike.

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Park Map
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Hundred Islands National Park Pictures

Engaging Hundred Islands

Hundred Islands National Park, consisting of 124 islands at low tide and 123 at high tide, is famous for its island hopping tours. These tours allow visitors to explore several islands, each with its own unique features and landscapes. Popular stops include Quezon Island, Governor’s Island, and Children’s Island.

These tours typically involve small boats that shuttle between the islands, offering ample time for exploration, swimming, and picnicking. Governor’s Island, for instance, hosts a viewing platform providing panoramic views of the park.

The clear blue waters surrounding the islands are ideal for snorkeling. The coral-rich areas, particularly around Marcos Island and Cuenco Island, offer vibrant marine life, including a variety of fish species and sea turtles.

Snorkeling gear is often available for rent from local operators, making this activity accessible even to those who travel light. This is an excellent way for visitors to engage directly with the natural beauty of the underwater ecosystems of Hundred Islands.

Kayaking is a peaceful way to explore the calm waters of Hundred Islands National Park at one’s own pace. Many of the islands are close enough to each other that visitors can comfortably kayak from one to another. The tranquil waters around these limestone islands make for an ideal kayaking environment, suitable even for beginners. Rental kayaks are available on some of the larger islands, such as Quezon Island.

Hundred Islands National Park Trails

Governor's Island Viewpoint Trail

Rating: Moderate

Distance and Elevation Gain: Approximately 0.5 kilometers one way, with an elevation gain of about 50 meters.

Description: This trail leads to the highest point on Governor’s Island, offering panoramic views of the Hundred Islands.

The hike is short but steep, culminating at a viewing deck where hikers can see a stunning overview of the surrounding islands.

It’s a popular spot for photography and to appreciate the scale and beauty of the national park.

Pilgrimage Island Trail

Rating: Moderate

Distance and Elevation Gain: Around 0.3 kilometers one way, with an elevation gain of about 60 meters.

Description: Pilgrimage Island offers a spiritual journey alongside physical exertion, with a series of steps leading to a giant statue of Christ the Savior at the summit.

Along the climb, hikers can stop at various stations of the cross, making it a reflective and rewarding experience with panoramic views of the sea and nearby islands from the top.

Quezon Island Nature Trail

Rating: Easy

Distance and Elevation Gain: 0.2 kilometers round trip, with minimal elevation gain.

Description: This easy, short walk on Quezon Island is perfect for families and casual hikers.

The trail loops around the island, offering beautiful seaside views, opportunities to spot local wildlife, and access to small, secluded beaches.

It’s a leisurely way to explore one of the park’s most visited islands.

Marcos Island Cave Path

Rating: Moderate

Distance and Elevation Gain: Less than 0.1 kilometers one way, with minimal elevation gain but requires a short swim.

Description: The Marcos Island trail is more of an adventurous path leading to a cave where hikers can then swim into the hidden lagoon inside.

The hike itself is short and easy, but the swim adds an element of adventure, making it a unique experience combining hiking, swimming, and exploring.

Children's Island Nature Walk

Rating: Easy

Distance and Elevation Gain: Varies, but generally less than 0.2 kilometers with minimal elevation gain.

Description: Designed for easy exploration, Children’s Island offers gentle paths that meander around the island, suitable for hikers of all ages.

These trails are short, offering a chance to enjoy the natural beauty of the island, with easy access to its beaches and shallow waters ideal for swimming and snorkeling.

  • Alaminos City, Hundred Islands National Park,, retrieved April 2024.
  • Republic of the Philippines, Hundred Islands National Park,, retrieved April 2024.
  • The Happy Trip, Hundred Islands Pangasinan,, retrieved April 2024.
  • The Pinay Solo Backpacker, Hundred Islands National Park,, retrieved April 2024.
  • Wikipedia, Hundred Islands National Park,, retrieved April 2024.