Surrounded by palm trees and the South China Sea on the west coast of Luzon, Subic Bay has become many things since its naval base closed in 1992: a tropical beach destination and duty-free port, a wreck diver’s dream and a gated playground for the rich, replete with golf courses, yachts, smart hotels and even a casino.
Two hours’ drive west of Manila, Subic Bay’s main districts are the tax and duty free Freeport Zone and the CBD, where most of Subic Bay's shops and hotels sit with restaurants and bars along the waterfront. Baloy Long Beach is a relaxed place to stay in Subic Bay, with hotels right on the beach.
For scuba divers, there are 19 wrecks to explore, the star attraction of which is the USS New York, a 400-foot (120-meter) long US battle-cruiser dating all the way back to 1891. As far as beaches go, the popular Dungaree Beach is close to the CBD, and Camayan Beach is a good one to head to for adventure in the Freeport Zone. Here you can dive, snorkel and kayak. Next to Camayan Beach, Ocean Adventure is one of Subic Bay’s biggest tourism draws for its opportunities to swim with dolphins.
A bus can be taken with Saulog Transit or Victory Liner to Subic's Olangapo City, located 68 miles (110 km) northwest of Manila. If driving from the capital, take the Subic-Clark Expressway. No tricycles or jeepneys are allowed within the Freeport Zone, only taxis.