Monday, June 20, 2011

Romantic beach wedding in Matabungkay

The beach is one of the most romantic places to hold a wedding, and no place is more romantic than the resort beaches of Matabungkay, Batangas.  The timelessness of ivory white sand and vast ocean makes for cherished memories for one of the most unforgettable milestones in one's life.

I was invited by a friend to attend to her beach wedding in Matabungkay, Lian, Batangas last Summer 2010.  This was her dream wedding, she told me. It was my first time to attend a beach wedding so I was excited for her and eager to attend the event.  It was not only a chance to witness an unusual wedding ceremony but it was also an opportunity for me to discover Batangas. I had long heard how wonderful the beaches down there.

Romantic beach wedding.
Shadows on sand dunes.
Welcome to Matabaungkay!
To attend the event, my friends and I took a road trip to the town of Lian where Matabungkay is located. The road was very scenic. We took the road via Tagaytay where we passed the magnificent Taal Lake and Taal Volcano, misty and surrounded by mountains. We saw pineapple and sugarcane farms and other scenes of rural life typical of the Southern Tagalog region - a boy riding a paragos, a low sledge pulled by a carabao; a man tending his field of red peppers and beans.

Matabungkay is reasonably accessible and nearer than the other beach town in Batanags. Roads are quickly accessed. when we arrived at Matabungkay Beach Resort and Hotel, the summery resort atmosphere that greeted us and the fresh air of the sea was pleasant and invigorating.

Summer 2010.
The summery view from the beach cabana.
Matabungkay is a tourist destination because of its ivory white sand beaches that are easily accessible from Manila.  It has a small coral reef about 50 meters from the low tide mark in the center of the cove which diverts the waves beautifully and creates some that on good days you could go body surfing on.
Matabungkay Beach Reasort and Hotel is one of the popular beach resorts in Matabungkay. It offers perfect wedding-by-the-beach packages and facilities, amenities and services designed to fit the needs of a "just married" couple.  No wonder my friend chooses to have her wedding celebrated here.

Margarita, please...
We stayed in a beach-front cabana that had a terrace facing the long stretch of the beach.  A view of the horizon glowing in hues of red and amber set a portentous tone for out stay in Batangas, one that promised good things. Moments later, the sky turned dark violet as the night began to emerge.

As soon as I unpacked my clothes, I immediately went for a stroll on the beach with my friends.  It was dark already but the stretch of the white sand beach was lit by lamp posts lining the shore.  There were few people on the beach and it was quiet except for the occasional murmur of voices (lovers maybe?) and the sound of the water as it hit the sand.

Matabungkay Beach.
 We dined together with the soon-to-be-wed couple and their families.  We shared stories and as expected, the bride and the groom got a lot of ribbing and were subjected to many embarrassing stories about the "sins" of their past. There was a also a lot of talk about the wedding that was to be held the next day.

After dinner, we all adjourned to the Wave Music Lounge, the resort's premier bar for some karaoke singing. The bar was decorated in dreamy waves and hues in blue.  I toasted my friends with a Margarita and wished them a future as harmonious as the ying and the yang of the sweet and sour liquid and salt in my glass.  My friend said, "duh," but they drank to my toast which was all that mattered.  I didn't drink hard alcohols and all we did is sing and enjoy the night before the wedding. It was a wonderful way to end the evening.

Balsa experience...

Enjoying summer to the fullest!
An early morning stroll exploration of the beach was my first activity the following day. The tide at Matabungkay beach is constantly on low ebb so it is easy to swim and poke around. The sea teems with marine life - brittle stars, sea grasses and starfish that were easy to spot in the low tide waters.

A local offered us an island hopping tour on his pump boat plus a visit to a remote cove where we could swim.  He was charging only 400 pesos.  The prospect was tempting.  We could see waves in the distance while the ocean breeze called for a brisk boat ride in the open sea. I could discover adventures in the islands beyond with my friends, but alas, we did not have enough time and had to turn down the very reasonable offer.

A romantic sunset during the beach wedding.
I suggested instead that we relax in one of the floating "balsa" or bamboo rafts on the water. The raft had a roof made of nipa and had a table and a bench in the middle of it. It was big enough for at least fifteen people. It was a good place for a lunch or snack with your companions as it had a spectacular view of the sea, sky, hills, beach and green mountains of Matabungkay.

We had fun taking pictures on the raft, especially with the starfish that one of my friends had picked-up from among the sea grass at the sea floor. However, the best part of the "balsa experience" for me was relaxing under the hut, being rocked by the motions of the sea and feeling one with the splendor around me of the majestic view of the ocean right in front of my sight.
Happily ever after...
By noon, I rested in preparation for the wedding ceremony which would start at five o'clock that afternoon. . From our cabana, I could see the beach area that was being set-up for the ceremony and reception.  The motif color was red, my friend's favorite color.  There were bouquets of red roses on every table in the reception area that made it look classier and intimate.

The ceremony began just as the sun began to dip, setting the romantic mood for beach wedding. The sky is now turned golden orange as my friend and her husband exchanged vows of eternal love.  The beach was later lighted with torch fired adding even more romance to the atmosphere.  The wedding ended with cake served with red wine while we listened to bossa nova songs played by a live band. It was a memorable wedding night and a splendid celebration of love!

The bridesmaids.
Sumptuous dinner!
A wonderful way to end the romantic evening...
I heard other fame beach towns in Batangas like Anilao, San Juan, Calatagan and Punta Fuego as other must-visits. Perhaps I could visit them on a next opportunity to discover it or perhaps on another attendance to a wedding by the beach.  A beach wedding is really a wonderful way to start a life of wedded bliss. I myself am not getting getting married anytime soon, but I dream of the same such romantic beach wedding too. But for others out there, couples dreaming of an unforgettable wedding, it is not too late to become a June bride and groom.


  1. Congratulations!!!I agree, I've been to Batangas for more than 5 times already, and what I like most is the beaches they had and the resorts or hotels that serves guests very hospitable. I can't wait to go back and cherish every moment.

  2. Okay din pala sa Matabungkay ah. I recall going there before pero ang naaalala ko lang puro balsa yung beachfront hehe hirap na hirap kami mag swim =P

  3. @Island Resort: Thanks for visiting.

    @Christian: I also didn't expect that Matabungkay Beach is good. It wasn't high end but very suitable for vacations. It's difficult to swim there because most of the time it is low tide in Matabungkay.

  4. what a sweet dream wedding. i've always dreamt of such but diocese prohibits priests to wed on non-secular places :(

  5. wow! i love wedding beach! hope may maginvite sakin :)

  6. @Jasper: apparently they have a different Christian religion.

    @Adventurousfeet: it's a nice event where you can visit a new place and attend a special ceremony at the same time. Matabungkay is a good quick escapade destination.

  7. Wow! Nice! I love beach wedding and hopefully magkaroon na din ako soon! :D

  8. @Tina: Thanks for visiting!

  9. Indeed this Romantic beach wedding looks super awesome. All of these photos just took my heart. We too had a dream wedding in the last month. It was held at one of the beachside wedding venues in NYC. The wedding decorator had awesomely unique ideas for the decorations which came out beautifully.


All comments and reactions are highly appreciated.

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