Published: March 31st 2006September 17th 2004
I’ve been working for almost three years here inside the Subic Bay Freeport Zone
, but honestly, I have never explored the place since. Guess, I’m missing a lot from its wide array of offerings - beaches, duty free shops, hotels, bars, jungles, golf clubs, and many others.
It's my birthday, and to break the monotony of my life, read as work, work, work, I spent it with adventure on two of SBMA’s latest additions of tourist attractions - Zoobic Safari and Ocean Adventure.
Both places are located in the Naval Mag area which is approximately 15-20km from SBMA main gate. Transportation to this area is not accessible to public transport, so we hired a van to get us there. We made a fair deal on one of the transport services located in the Park-and-Shop. The driver charged us for 300pesos for the first 3 hours, (I’m not so sure though about their rates for the succeeding hours), which would cover the Safari tour (2hours) and he will drop us to Ocean Adventure after the tour for additional fee of 150 pesos. We just asked him to pick us up from Ocean adventure, after four hours, for another 300 pesos. Zoobic Safari
We were greeted by tiger cubs and an albino snake, soon as we stepped at the Zoo’s lobby at around 10am. After we paid for the entrance Fee of Php 265.00, we were provided with a staff to guide as along the two-hour five-part tour. We also had the chance to feed the tiger cubs that made me really really nervous.
The tour guide first led us to The Serpentarium which showcases a variety of iguanas, lizards, snakes, turtles and crocodiles and other reptiles.
Then we made a walk-through The Petting Zoo where deer, cassowary, mini-horses, apes, sheep, carabao, wild bear, monkeys, and many other animals roam around their wide cages.
We then reached the tour’s highlight - The Tiger Safari where we boarded into a safari jeepney which drove us to the 15-hectare Safari with 12 adult tigers roaming around, mostly in the area of a large pond.
I was so nervous during the Close Encounter with the tigers which is a walk past a dozen, full grown, 500+ pound tigers. They are so huge, and even though they were inside their cages, my heart was really pounding to the fear that they can seize me anytime.
The finale of our tour was The Savannah which houses over 50 ostriches from Africa and Australia. Unfortunately, it was mating season, so the ostriches were aggresive that time, they were attacking us from the van.
Zoobic Safari is still on its development stage, and they have plans of putting additional attractions like the Elephant World, Honey Bee Farm, Alligator Land and Rice Wine Brewery.
Before we proceeded to Ocean adventure, we had a sidetrip in the Butterfly Garden (very near to Zoobic Safari). We paid for an entrance of 10 pesos, just a donation to the Aetas who takes care of the place.
Since it’s almost lunch time, and we brought our lunch with us, we had our picnic on the area near the Butterfly Garden where 2 monkeys joined us along.
It is suggested that you bring your own food. You can have your lunch inside Zoobic Safari's lobby, while it is prohibited to bring food inside Ocean Adventure. And their food in the canteen is very very expensive. Ocean Adventure
Just a 15-minute drive from Zoobic Safari is Ocean Adventure, a themed-park featuring marinelife.
It's my second time to visit Ocean Adventure, the first
was in May2002 w/ my officemates. For an entrance fee of Php 450.00, I was delighted to see the sea lions and the false killer whales do their tricks again. I also got the chance to be close to the sea lion, and she even kissed me, what a fantastic souvenir for my special day.
Ocean Adventure has a lot of activities within a day. They have scheduled activities every hour which includes False Killer Whale Show which I enjoyed the most, Sea Lion show, and encounter with the animals. Also on site, are aquariums with different kinds of colorful fishes. They also have a mini-zoo which houses adopted animals from the Subic jungles such as wild boars, monkeys and birds. They are expected to have their dolphin shows next year.
After the day’s adventure, if you want to refresh and take an afternoon/night swimming, there is a nearby resort, the Camayan Beach which is also operated by Ocean Adventure. Expenses
265 - Zoobic Safari Tour
450 - Ocean Adventure Entrance
1000 - Food and Transpo
1,695 - Total Getting There/Around
Subic is a 1.5 hours trip from Pampanga. You can hire a van to go there and around, or you can ride a Victory Liner or FX in San Fernando to go to Olongapo City. In the City, ride a yellow jeep, to go to SBMA.
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