Get Wet in Pink: Sta Cruz Island (aka The Pink Island), Zamboanga City

On our second day, we went on a morning trip to the famous pink sand beach of the Santa Cruz islands. To think that this parcel of Paradise is just 10 minutes away from the city proper … who wouldn’t dare visit it?

Since there were only the four of us and one boat (which could hold a maximum of 12 pax) costs 1,000php, we decided to join with another group. Beforehand you also need to list yourselves at the Tourism office for the trip as they will be providing a military escort to your group. I think this is because of the abductions and kidnappings many years back in the island (it was also because of this event that the Pink Island’s popularity waned).

Zamboanga: Santa Cruz Island and its Pink Sand

A pink sand beach is very rare and there are only a few of them around the globe. They can be found in Horseshoe Bay in Bermuda, 3 islands from the Bahamas, Culebra in Puerto Rico, Maui in Hawaii, Santorini in Greece, Barbuda in the Carribean, Crane Beach in Barbados, and here in The Great Santa Cruz Islands in the Philippines.

So how did this beach got its pink sand qualities? It’s mainly because of these endangered Red Organ-Pipe Corals. From eons of natural surf erosion, these red organ-pipe corals were pulverized and mixed with the white sands resulting to its colorization. These corals are considered rare due to its unique qualities of a soft coral having a hard skeleton.

Here’s a sample:

What I particularly love about the island, aside from its pristine blue waters is the serenity of the place. It’s not as crowded as the ones you’ll find in Boracay or Palawan. And I think if you are like me, who prefers areas where you could find peace of mind and truly say that you’re in a vacation (coz people go for vacations to rest right?), you’ll love it here.

The locals are also very friendly. You could find a bunch of them here selling souvenir items (mostly sea shells, rock stones and authentic pearls carved and made into necklaces, bracelets, keychains for very affordable prices). There are also swimming goggles and snorkeling sets for rent for those who’d like to view the underwater.

Some locals would also offer to cook food for you, just in time coz we actually didn’t bring any ‘baon’ (the Filipino way of calling packed meals). The one we’ve talked to offered to cook us a kilogram of rice for a hundred pesos and crabs (as seen in the image below) 6 big pieces (almost 2kg) I think for just 100php. Imagine that?! Yummy!!

So after a sumptuous lunch, we decided to hit the beach again, some of our friends even sunbathed at the blazing heat of the sun (at 12noon, wow!), but the current’s starting to get strong, as the Pink Island’s located just across the open Sulu sea, so we just decided to walk around the island.

It would probably take two hours to walk around from end to end. But since it’s already too hot for us to bear, we  just hiked a few meters to check out the other side.

I love the beach. The sound of the waves, the smell of salt in the air, the ever-changing scenery, the sand under my feet – it’s heaven as far as I’m concerned. Whether you spent your childhood summers going on beach vacations with your family, grew up on a beach or are lucky enough to have a beach house of your own, you know what I’m talking about. There is such a sense of peace and freedom to look out over the ocean and not be able to see where it ends. Ponds, rivers, and lakes, certainly have their place in the universe, but they just cannot compare to the open seas. I’m so glad I’ve had the opportunity to see this wonderful gift of nature. Hope you’ll consider this also in you future trips!

“Why do we love the sea? It is because it has some potent power to make us think things we like to think.”
Robert Henri

This 3-day adventure to Zamboanga City happened last March 23-25, 2012. Here is a series of posts on our trip to Asia’s Latin City. Discover the places we’ve been to, the people we met, the food we tasted and the experience we gained in this remarkable escapade. Zamboanga City 3D/2N: The 1,000 Peso Travel Challenge | Exploring Asia’s Latin City: Ciudad de Zamboanga | Pasonanca Park, Zamboanga City: The Little Baguio of the South | Looking Back: A Visit at Fort Pilar and the National Museum of Zamboanga City | Get Wet in Pink: Sta Cruz Island (aka The Pink Island) | Nightfall at Paseo del Mar and the Musical Fountain

45 thoughts on “Get Wet in Pink: Sta Cruz Island (aka The Pink Island), Zamboanga City

  1. OMG ang galing ng mga shots!!! super galing! Saludo ako!! And Ganda din of course ng beach.. Kaso nakakatakot naman may military escort pa. Sayang naman tourism sa lugar na yan napakaganda pa naman.. Hope to visit this place soon!

    • until now parang wala pa ring nagbago eh.. sayang nga yung beauty ng island.. anyway, at least here you get to have a whole island for yourself for a minimum budget! where else could you find something like that! 🙂

    • Oh. Why is that Cha? Any health condition that you have that’s preventing you from coming to the beach? I’m sure the beach has a lot of proven medical benefits, even just being there, the serenity and calmness it provides, can already be a cure to our soul.

  2. Pingback: Zamboanga City 3D/2N: The 1,000 Peso Travel Challenge | The Adventures of AdventuRoj!

  3. Pingback: Nightfall at Paseo del Mar and the Musical Fountain | The Adventures of AdventuRoj!

  4. Pingback: Pasonanca Park, Zamboanga City: The Little Baguio of the South | The Adventures of AdventuRoj!

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  7. Nice article! Nice pictures too! I hope I can visit Sta. Cruz Island soon. I’m actually from Isabela City, Basilan but is now staying here in Zamboanga. I haven’t get the chance to visit the place yet but I hope I can make it before the year ends. 😉

  8. Hi Roj, been wondering if you could give me a hint or suggestion on how to enlist my self for the Pink Island tour, or if you can give me a contact person. I’ll be arriving in Zambo City on the 16th of Sept., I would like to experience Pink Island on the 17th, monday… Kindly email me for more info, please tnx so much

    • Hi Marvs!

      You may try contacting these contact details –

      Tel 062 9930030.

      It’s from their tourism office. I actually lost my contact no from one of their reps. Hopefully the above details will work. If not, you may just head for their tourism office upon your arrival so you could enlist yourself for the tour for the next day.

      Thanks for dropping by my blog! Hope you’ll have a wonderful stay there!


  9. Hello Roj, heading to Zamboanga next month, and kasama ang Sta. Cruz Island sa aming to do list. Yung sa bangka and paluto lang ba ang ginastos ninyo? Wala bang binabayaran sa Tourism Office? Salamat sa info!

  10. Oh dear, I am amazed at how you write your articles! Very informative and you always make everything seem so interesting! 🙂 Ang galing talaga, keep it up!

    And.. *sob* ZC is my hometown but I’ve never been to Sta. Cruz Island, I only see it all the time as a part of the horizon, what a shame! XD

  11. wow astig!!we have planned to visit there this coming september..i’m so excited..Pink is my favorite color that’s why when somebody talking about this color,wearing this color,,ay grabe..kulang n lng pti food q color pink..haha.:-)i’m so excited while reading this article..ganda po..sna mkpgdala ko ng maraming memorabilla lalo na ung prang boat..cute vinta ba un??

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