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Baler gets ready for a surge in visitors this “Undas,” or Christmas

The local municipal tourism bureau has stated that it is prepared for the surge of visitors, particularly during the next “Undas” and the Christmas season.

During the celebration of “Undas,” or All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day, locals—students, friends, relatives, and families—go home and visit cemeteries and memorial parks to remember their ancestors, Riza del Rosario, chief of the Baler municipal tourism office, said in an interview on Tuesday.

They anticipate that both domestic and international visitors would swarm to Aurora’s capital city to celebrate the holidays, she continued.

Del Rosario stated that a comprehensive strategy for peace and order would be put into place this next holiday in conjunction with the Philippine National Police (PNP) to secure the safety of the populace.

“The Philippine National Police (PNP) will carry out Oplan Kaluluwa, and additional manpower for security will come from the 91st Infantry Sinagtala Battalion of the Philippine Army, tanods, and other force multipliers,” she stated.

Churches, public transportation hubs, tourist attractions like the Quezon Memorial, San Doa Aurora home, Ermita Hill, Museo de Baler, Sabang eco-tourism area, and other populated sites would all have increased protection, she said.

Del Rosario reaffirmed that, in accordance with Municipal Ordinance 2018-035, each visitor/tourist must pay a sustainable eco-tourism development fee (SEDF) of PHP100, with a 20% discount for senior citizens and those with disabilities.

Those who arrive for scientific or academic research with the prior consent and authority of the local government unit of Baler and upon presentation of a letter of endorsement or mission order signed by his/her agency head are exempt, as are children under the age of seven, residents of Aurora upon presentation of either their residence certificate, voter’s ID, or any government ID, government officials who visit Baler to perform an official function, and visitors who are seven years old or younger.

Del Rosario stated that the Baler transport terminal, Museo de Baler, and the home of Doa Aurora Aragon Quezon were all locations where SEDF tickets could be paid for.

From January through September of this year, this town welcomed 43,140 tourists.

Del Rosario said that the Costa Pacifica, Aliya Surf, Bay’s Inn, Carlito’s Inn, and El Teodoro Transient are the top five lodgings on the list of those with the highest visitor arrivals.

She stated that after the limits imposed by the pandemic are lifted, they anticipate a recovery in the local tourism sector in the ensuing months.

“We are continuing to promote Baler by hosting the 2022 Surf & Music – A Pilipinas Surfing National Leg and Music Festival from October 26 to October 31. In November, Baler will be promoted in Subic and Clark, and in December, there will be a cultural performance, a band, and other events.

A total of 997,003 tourists arrived at the Museo de Baler, Doa Aurora House, Tourism Office, and Ermita Hill between January 2011 and September 2022, according to data.

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