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Isla de Sta. Cruz to get a facelift

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Tourism Secretary Wanda Corazon T. Teo is thrilled over the inclusion of the Great Santa Cruz Island (also called Isla de Santa Cruz) in Zamboanga City on the list of the 21 Best Beaches in the World by the international publication National Geographic. “We are so proud about this citation and happy about its very timely announcement, which comes right after our visit last December when I had pushed for the island’s immediate improvement and development as an ecotourism destination,” the secretary said.



The Great Santa Cruz Island, Zamboanga City


The Great Santa Cruz Island used to be under the supervision of Department of Tourism’s (DOT) implementing arm for infrastructure, the Philippine Tourism Authority (PTA), now named as Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (Tieza).  In 2011 it was turned over to the local government under the City Tourism Office, Protected Management Unit.


The DOT chief has instructed DOT Region 9 Director Antonio Blanco to coordinate with Tieza to assist the local government in undertaking facilities upgrade, provision of additional cottages and offering more nature-based recreational activities.



In Photo: The Great Santa Cruz Island (courtesy of BusinessMirror)


“The planned development will highlight its conservation and preservation, it being a protected area. Nonetheless, the outcome should enable locals and foreign visitors alike to enjoy the island’s beauty but still strictly maintaining it as a day destination. We would like to attract genuine ecotourists as they take ‘responsible, ethical and sustainable tourism’ to heart,” Teo said.


On its web site (, National Geographic said, “Hardly lacking in gorgeous beaches, the Philippines claims a pink-sand variety, too. The blush color comes from billions of pieces of crushed red organ-pipe coral, seen in every handful of sand. The number of visitors to the island is regulated, and advance arrangements should be made through the tourist office in Zamboanga.”


The other beaches cited on the list are:   Playa del Amor on Marietas Islands in Mexico; Cathedrals Beach in Ribadeo, Spain; Anse Source d’Argent in La Digue, Seychelles; One Foot Island on Aitutaki, Cook Islands; Sunset Beach on Brunswick Islands, North Carolina; Lazy Beach on Koh Rong Island, Cambodia; Bowman’s Beach on Sanibel Island, Florida; Shell Beach in Shark Bay, Western Australia; Lyme Regis in England; Cannon Beach in Oregon; Carmel City Beach in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California; Noordwjk Beach in the Netherlands; Papakolea Beach in Hawaii; Reynisfjara Beach in Iceland; Pelican Beach in South Water Caye, Belize; Blue Bay in Mauritius; Cas Abao Beach in Curacao; Sleeping Bear Point in Sleeping Bear Dunes, Michigan; Piscinas Beach in Arbus, Sardinia; and Corniche Beach in La Teste-De-Buch, France.


The Philippines was also part of National Geographic’s List of Top Destinations for 2016.(


This article was originally published by our media partner, BusinessMirror.

Isla de Sta. Cruz to get a facelift

by BusinessMirror  |  Published: 5 Feb. 2017



Author: BusinessMirror
Posted by: Anna Stiva

Photo source:
Isla Sta Cruz in Zamboanga – https:/ /
Second photo – courtesy of BusinessMirror






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