Bisected by a virtually impassable mountain range – aptly named the High Rolling Mountains – rugged Mindoro is part tropical paradise, part remote getaway. Forming a dramatic backdrop almost everywhere, the mountains separate the island’s two provinces: rough and rugged Mindoro Occidental to the west, and more prosperous Mindoro Oriental to the east.
Most visitors head to the dive resorts around Puerto Galera on the north coast, but there is much more to Mindoro. If you prefer remote to resort, venture into Mindoro Occidental, where virtually tourist-free Sablayan and jumping-off point for the pristine dive mecca of Apo Reef, awaits. Improvements to roads are making this once hard-to-reach province more accessible than ever.
Mindoro’s south coast has excellent island-hopping, while in the mountainous interior you can hike to remote villages populated by the indigenous Mangyan tribespeople.