ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/11 February) – Tourist arrivals at the Greater Sta. Cruz Island almost doubled last year compared to the number of visitors in 2012, the City Tourism Office reported.
Touted as the only place in the country with a pink sand beach, the island registered a total of 21,982 visitors in 2013 or an 87-percent increase from 2012.
City Tourism Officer Sarita Sebastian-Hernandez said the Greater Sta. Cruz Island had 21,982 visitors last year and 11,745 in 2012.
Hernandez said the city government has supported the development of the island as major tourist attraction by constructing last year amenities and facilities to accommodate the increasing number of visitors.
The amenities and facilities formed part of the city government’s effort to develop an ecotourism park in the island.
Hernandez said tourists who wish to go the Greater Sta. Cruz Island may drop by her office at the Paseo del Mar for travel arrangements.
The island is 15 to 20 minutes ride by motorized banca from the Paseo del Mar.
According to Wikipedia, the pink sand came from the pulverized red organ pipe coral from eons of surf erosion mixed with white sand.
Meanwhile, Hernandez said the total tourist arrivals in the city in 2013 reached 296,545. (MindaNews)