Surf town Baler now off-limits to non-residents

Mar 15, 2020

TO HELP stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, acting governor Christian Noveras has imposed an entry ban on the entire province, barring tourists and non-residents from entering Aurora, reports Inquirer Northern Luzon.

As of today, March 15, Aurora has reported no confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Exempted from the ban are deliveries of food and other supplies, as well as officials with authorized transactions in Aurora and people who are there to provide medical, humanitarian, and basic services.

This entry ban will certainly affect the many resorts in the surfing town of Baler.

Earlier today, one of the most popular resorts, Aliya Surf Camp, already announced that they would close until further notice. It released a statement on its Facebook page, saying, "[There's] no coronavirus recorded in Baler and we would like it to stay that way. All deposits and reservations can be refunded or rebooked. We will get in touch with you. Sorry but we need to be safe at all times."

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Surfing holds a special place in the history of Baler. In 1979, the cast and crew of Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now surfed the breaks of Sabang Beach. The surfboards they left behind would birth an entire industry.

Meanwhile, in San Juan, another popular surfing destination, the provincial government has placed the entire La Union under community quarantine.

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"If you have friends and family coming home from Metro Manila, overseas or other areas with confirmed COVID-19 cases, please inform it to the Barangay Council for monitoring and observe a 14-day home quarantine," added the City Government of San Fernando on the Facebook post.

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