I mentioned in one of my posts that when Filipinos go home to the Philippines, they generally want to stay home with their family and relatives, so, if you wish to visit some exotic beaches when you visit the Philippines with your Filipino wife, you have to figure out a win-win solution.
What I suggested in a previous post is to book in advance a flight to some island where you can have a proper vacation , maybe Palawan, Coron or wherever it is that you would like to travel, before you actually go to your wife’s hometown because, once you are in your wife’s birthplace she will probably not want to go anywhere else.
Nevertheless, even staying in your wife’s birthplace could be an enjoyable experience even if her place is not a tourist spot. Actually, the fact itself that your wife’s hometown is likely not a tourist spot could make your stay there even more interesting than visiting the coral reefs or the white-sandy beaches.
As far as I am concerned, spending most of the time in the Philippines in my wife’s hometown turned out to be a blessing in disguise…
My wife’s hometown (San Ildefonso, Bulacan) is far from any white-sandy beaches and there seems to be nothing exciting to do in the barangay or in the barrio.
However I discovered that within 30 or 40 square miles there are interesting places such as a virgin jungle, waterfalls, rivers and even an underground river that no one ever bothered to advertise and those places are definitely off the beaten track and the only way to get there is by means of a jeep and strictly accompanied by locals, and those are places where no Western tourist has ever been to except myself (apart I guess from the Spaniards a few centuries ago).
So, even if there is no famous tourist spot to visit in your wife’s area, the idea itself of being the only foreigner who ever set foot there could, in and of itself, make your vacation.
As for me, the time I spent in the Sierra Madre Ranges in Bulacan visiting such unknown spots as the Bulusukan river, the Sierra Madre jungle, the Madlum river etc. proved to be a lot more interesting than snorkeling in Bolinao or the One Hundred Islands National Park for example.
So, the next time you visit your Filipino wife’s hometown, if her place is situated somewhere in the province, before concluding that the only way you can enjoy your vacation in the Philippines is by going elsewhere, try to ask your wife’s relatives, especially those who have jeeps, if they can take you to some off the beaten track place nearby that can only be reached by driving on rough roads.
I did it and that was the real highlight of my experience in the Philippines.