The title alone might make you want to scratch your head. But before you do, let me explain. It was actually inspired by the movie “O Brother Where Art Thou?” – something I happened to be watching while trying to come up with a way to start this entry. One particular scene that struck my fancy was when the valley that Mr. Clooney and company where in was swept by water. This got me thinking: that’s the type of deluge you’d like to find yourself surfing in. Luckily, we really don’t have to leave the country or experience a disaster just to get that type of wave. All you need is to set your sights up north, directly at Baler.
Founded in the early 1600’s by the Franciscans before being converted by the Augustinians and Recollects to a “pueblo” or town, Baler is considered both the political and economical center of Aurora. But what sets this place apart from other destinations aren’t just its unique historical tourist spots. It’s also the waves churned out by the beaches in its surrounding area. According to residents, it’s the town’s “nine-foot waves” that has placed Baler on the map. This distinction has allowed them to garner a huge number of visitors, particularly surfers, not just from the Philippines but from around the world as well. Let’s face it – being able to cruise on those waves is a surfer’s dream come true.
Because of this reputation and word-of-mouth, Baler has been able to set itself up as a haven for the Filipino surfing community. By far, it houses the largest in the country, reaching up to fifty members and more as it continually convert locals into surfers. And more importantly, this friendly community is willing and able to lend a helping hand especially to aspiring surfers eager to learn about the sport. This is probably why Baler has now become a beginner’s haven, with it’s long streamlined beaches perfect for learning and the other “secret” spots perfect for the more advanced.
So before you set your sights on going to other places to catch some waves, consider taking a trip up north to Baler first. If you’re not convinced, we’ll give you a rundown in our next installment as to why the beaches in this town can give even the beaches in Hawaii or Malibu a run for their money. We’ll take you there. Virtually of course.