How to Get to San Fernando La Union from Manila

San Fernando La Union is a city in the Ilocos region, the north-western territory in the Philippines. Despite being the political and commercial centre of the region, San Fernando is only the capital of the province, La Union. The distance of San Fernando La Union from Manila is 270km, which can be a challenging self-drive, albeit well connected by road. Read on to find out how to get there!

How to Get to San Fernando La Union from Manila

La Union province is home to San Juan beach, also known as the top surfing destination in the north of the Philippines (presumably only surpassed by Siargao in the South) with San Fernando acting as the main gateway.

San Fernando La Union, should not be confused with San Fernando Pampanga, another Philippine city which is closer to Metro Manila, and a popular stop for those attending the Good Friday Crucifixions in San Pedro Cutud (and home to a huge SM Mall).

Related: The Rice Terraces of Batad and Banaue

Kite Surfer- How to get to San Fernanado la union from ManilaPhoto Credit: Jeanvdmeulen

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Flights to San Fernando La Union from Manila

Getting to San Fernando La Union by air is a bit complicated. Although the San Fernando La Union airport has been upgraded to qualify for international flights, it has so far failed to attract interest in airlines and, bar the occasional charter flight, the building lies dormant waiting for business.

Related: Making the Most of MoalBoal

Philippines Air - How to get to San Fernanado la union from Manila
Photo Credit: Simeworks

How to Get to San Fernando La Union from Manila By Bus

Whatever business San Fernando La Union lacks with regards to air transport, it makes up for by land, as the province is well connected by an extensive road network.

There are various bus companies operating this route from Manila, with the most popular being Partas and Dominion (both departing from Cubao Terminal) and Viron (Cubao and Sampaloc terminals). The price for the trip to San Fernando La Union ranges from around 400 to 650 PHP (about €6.20 – €10), depending on the type of bus.

Frequency is very regular and you are almost assured of a departure to San Fernando La Union from Manila every 30 minutes, around the clock, when taking into account all the bus companies running the route. Claimed travel time is around 5 hours, but you are to expect anything from 6 to 8 hours.

Most of these buses go all the way up to Laoag – the capital of Ilocos Norte region, and many also pass through San Juan, so you may wish to advise the conductor/ticket personnel of your intended destination before boarding.

Related: A Walking tour of Cebu City

The victory liner bus at Cubao station - San Fernando Pampanga from Manila

How to Get to San Fernando La Union From Baguio

If a long bus journey sounds awful to you, you may consider splitting up the trip with a stop at Baguio. The city is a modern student town with exceptional internet (seriously) and some good places to eat. From Baguio, a Partas bus takes about 2 hours to San Fernando La Union. At the time of writing there were 3 daily buses running this route for the cost of around 110 PHP (about €1.70).

Read more about The Philippines. The Jeepney in Baguio - How to get to San Fernando la Union from Manila

Where to Stay

San Fernando and San Juan are popular destinations. Check the windows below for the latest accommodation prices.

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