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San Jose is a 1st class coastal municipality in the province of Occidental Mindoro, Philippines. “Occidental” means west and “Oriental” means east.

The town is the jump in point if you want to see the ‘Tamarraw’ in the TCP gene pool, the virgin Ambulong Islands, Ilin Island, White Island, Pandan Island, Apo Reef, and Mt. Iglit National Park. Read Roadtrip buddy: How to see a tamarraw in Occidental Mindoro for more information about the tamarraw.

Cebu Pacific, Philippine Airlines, and Zest Air fly from Manila to San Jose on a regular basis. Flights take approximately 50 minutes. Montenegro and Besta Shipping operates a roll-on/roll-off ferry service from Manila to San Jose weekly that takes around 12-16 hours of travel.

You will notice a lot of flight schools operating in the city. This is because the flight areas are not very crowded and schools have to pay less for their plane operations.

Minimum tricycle fare is 8 Php. They have Jollibee. Enough said.

San Jose National Airport
The airport is small, organized and clean. Automated scanning machines are unavailable so security personnel perform manual baggage check operations on departure. Terminal Fee is 30 Php.


In front of the main building stands a big statue of a Tamarraw provided by the Rotary Club of San Jose and the local city government.

You can see restaurants, small stores and souvenir shops outside the airport.

San Jose Central Park and Municipal Hall
The central park is a gathering area for local concerts and programs. There is a stage at the center of the park. You can find a pond with 4 Tamarraw statues and another big Tamarraw figure facing the San Jose municipal hall.


St. Joseph Church
St. Joseph Church is just meters away from the central park. It is colored pink and boasts a big bell tower on its side.


Macky’s Fast food

Macky’s Fast food is located in the San Jose National Road. Visiting this place is recommended for food trippers. You can find the best sizzling squid in this restaurant. Try also their sizzling seafood which combines vegetables and seafood delicacies (shrimp, squid, and fish) in a sweet and sour sauce.


Chowder

Chowder is also located in the national road. This is a good place to dine for a group tour. They have dining huts at the back of the main restaurant. Their “Bihon canton” is a must try and they boast their own variety of iced tea among other restaurants, Shaked. :)

Sikatuna Beach Hotel and Restaurant
Sikatuna Beach resort is well known to be a haven of travelers because of its affordable price and convenient coastal location.


It is also known by the locals for its seaside dishes. This is the closest fine dining experience you can have in San Jose. They cook the best shrimp Tempura (250 Php) and sweetened “Longganisa” (40 Php).

This is the only hotel that offers FREE public WIFI.

The beach resort is next to the municipal cemetery. 

The Pilot Lounge
The pilot lounge is a decent bar for travelers and locals owned by a female pilot from Mindoro. Their beer is expensive but the ambiance of the place is very relaxing. Enjoy listening to alternative and trance music in this tavern for pilots. The lounge presents a wide variety of aviation learning figures and materials in the bar. It is managed by Maricel and Rose.

San Jose Public Market
The San Jose Public Market is one of the biggest and busiest places in Occidental Mindoro. They offer a wide selection of wet and dry products from urban tribes and other market to supply the needs of the municipality.

The “Barra”
This is a small island on the side of the main San Jose Island. Ride a tug boat to cross for 2 Php from the back of the Public market.


San Jose Beach
The San Jose beach shore and water is clean.

You will notice a lot of children playing and swimming in the afternoon. Local fishermen dock their boats after fishing in the sand while their families help take in the catch.

A great sunset at the beach facing west awaits you.


Hope this helps fellow road trippers. Have fun in your back packing.

“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” – Henry Miller

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