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A New Project with the Aetas of Sampaloc Cove

Updated: Sep 11, 2021

Last October 19, a team from the Lighthouse Marina Resort Legacy Foundation and the Subic Sailing Club went to Sampaloc Cove to discuss the possibility of bringing one of the under-utilised paraw sailboat for their community to use for livelihood not just for tourism but also for fishing. (Back story about the paraws in Subic Bay)

A Paraw is a traditional Visayan double outrigger sailboat that were originally used for fishing and transport of goods and people to sail between the islands. It takes at least two people to sail it. Paraw sailing is one of the most popular water activity in Boracay and is a great and inexpensive way to explore many beaches and snorkel site around the islands.

Upon arrival, we were greeted with the usual smiles from the community headed by Carlito Romamban, the chieftain of Sampaloc Cove, together with some of his councils. The plans of receiving a paraw that will provide an added source of income for the community were well-received by the aeta councils.

We first set foot in Sampaloc Cove back in 2008 and since then so much has changed but the Lighthouse Marina Legacy Foundation continues to support the local Aeta community in any way it can. (Sampaloc Cove Story: A light in the Cove)

Below are some photos of our previous outreach project in Sampaloc Cove in the past years with various organizations.

Some of the beautiful coves of Zambales

Caption: Sampaloc Cove in Sitio Cawag is part of the Subic Town. It is 14kms away from the Lighthouse Marina Resort via boat, located at the mouth of Subic Bay along Redondo Peninsula. There is no road access to the cove and to go to the nearest town, will take more than half a day by foot which is similar to the many coves along the Zambales coastline. Towards the north of Sampaloc Cove there is Silanguin, Nagsasa, Talisayin and Anawangin Cove to name a few but this cove was the nearest to the Lighthouse Marina Resort.

Before we left, we gave away hundreds of wooden pencils for everyone in the Sampaloc Cove community donated by the Rotary Club of Freeport Zone. We hope that these pencils will either be used for creating art, telling stories, or preserving their culture and heritage.

The Zambal Aeta people, who had inhabited the great island of Luzon in the western Pacific, learnt the secrets of natural world and has mastered living purely with nature. It is this legacy of the Aeta that still hovers precariously within the only intact forests in the region. Concurrently, the demands for ‘remote’, ‘natural’ and ‘exotic’ environments of the Aeta people have created an upsurge in ecotourism ventures.

Of concern is the fact that it is precisely these more remote, less developed tourism areas that ecotourists seek which are most vulnerable to cultural disruption and environmental degradation. When business is the main driving force behind ecotourism it is not surprising that the ventures which emerge may serve to alienate, rather than benefit, local communities. Therefore, there is a need for an approach to ecotourism which starts from the needs, concerns, and welfare of local host communities.


The Lighthouse Legacy Foundation together with local partners and organizations such as the Subic Bay Freeport Chamber of Commerce (SBFCC) and the Subic Bay Hotels Attractions and Tourism Stakeholders and Visitors Board (SBHATSVB) are currently working on environmentally and socially responsible ecotourism programs that safeguard the integrity and diversity of its natural resources, provides education as well as enjoyment to visitors, and employment to the local communities especially the local indigenous people.

As one of the best ecotourism destinations in the country, our ability to help preserve the ecological balance of a growing economic zone is further strengthened by our commitment to Ecotourism. Ecotourism plays an important role in creating awareness and encouraging people to take action in protecting our environment by allowing them to experience the beauty of nature.

In a way, it is not really about protecting our environment but more about protecting the human race. The environment will survive without us. Its been around for thousands of years long before we came to this world. If we can not live in proper balance with mother nature, then we will eventually cease to exist. These indigenous people have lived in harmony with nature since time immemorial and they are also the most affected by environmental degradation. Helping them also means taking a stand to protect our environment.

Do you want to know how you can help the indigenous people of Sampaloc Cove, please email us at

Here are some of our existing projects:

The Mount Mayon Premium Pili Nuts by Subic Superfood Inc. is currently working on a livelihood program for the benefit of the Aetas in Kanawan located in Morong, Bataan through the help of the Subic Indigenous People Assistance Group (SIPAG) together with the Lighthouse Legacy Foundation.

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