The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) reopened the first phase of the artificial white sand along Manila Bay in Roxas Boulevard today, Sunday, July 18, 2021.
The dolomite beach, however, can only be accessed by the public until Tuesday, July 20, 2021. People can enter the artificial beach from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., and up to only 120 people every five minutes are allowed inside the phase one premises, which is near the US Embassy.
Senior citizens and minors with adult companions will be permitted to enter. Pets are not allowed on the beach. Also, eating, drinking, littering, and picking up dolomite sand in the vicinity are strictly prohibited.
Moreover, tourists cannot swim on the bay just yet as its waters still haven’t reached the standard acceptable levels of fecal coliform, even though the rehabilitation has already created a significant improvement, according to the DENR.
Marshalls are strategically stationed to implement the safety guidelines. They will supervise visitors to check if they are following the standard health and safety protocols such as observing social distancing and wearing face masks and face shields while at the Bay’s shore.
After the three-day public viewing, the DENR will assess if they will have the artificial white beach open again. The department aims to finish its second phase by October of this year.
Before its reopening, trash is seen floating on its shorelines, which they say might be coming from coastal areas in Cavite and sea vessels. But the DENR has deployed 50 coastal rangers to ensure its cleanliness every day.
Apart from the sand attraction, the DENR planted coconut palms along the baywalk area last June to add more visual appeal.
When the quarantine eases and the bay’s water meets the standard fecal coliform level of 100 mpn/ml, tourists can enjoy contact recreation such as swimming, skin-diving, among others in what the masses call the “poor man’s Boracay.”