Monthly Archives: July 2012

Of sandy beaches in a remote resort

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The white expanse of fine sand stretches a good hundreds of meters from the water’s edge. No exaggeration when it comes to the beaches of Cagbalete. At low tide, it stretches too far out that swimming in the clear blue waters of the Pacific will be fruitless. It makes for a lovely lounging spot though.

Still, Cagbalete Island is a great weekend getaway for a quick sun and sand date.

Easily accessible via public commute, buses ply the Mauban route via Lucena or directly from Metro Manila. Our group did the latter going to Mauban since the small buses from Lucena can drop off passengers at the marketplace near the pier. For the trip back to the metro, Manila-bound buses have a terminal right by the entrance to the town proper.

The boat ride to Cagbalete Island lasts between 45 minutes to an hour. The public boats are big enough to ferry around 40 to 50 passengers per way. Two public boats serve each scheduled time:

continue wandering here…

Flat tops

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Masungi Rocks by katie_buenaobra

The Pinagpatong Rocks form part of the Masungi Rock Formations which lie along the Sierra Madre Mountain Range. Located in Barangay Cuyambay in Tanay, Rizal, the rock formations occupy a vast portion of the barangay’s greenery. Easily seen from the main highway, there are two points to reach the rock formations. The more popular of the two is through the Garden Cottages Subdivision wherein at the jumpoff, 600 concrete steps take visitors to the peak of the rock formations.

Saving that route for another weekend, we ventured through the other entry point. After paying the barangay officials a courtesy visit and securing their clearance, we headed via rented motorbikes towards the jumpoff at Sitio Tablon.

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Above the clouds

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This was where all the madness started. I fell in love with the mountains. And they loved me back.

Mt. Pulag stands at 2,922 MASL and is the highest peak in Luzon. Known for its picturesque cloud formations when atop the summit (dubbed as the “sea of clouds”) and for temperatures dropping to minus 0 degree Celsius, Pulag is by far the most popular hiking destination in the country. It has four (4) known trails: Ambangeg, Akiki, Tawangan and Ambaguio. The first (of four trails) I have already tried, Ambangeg is definitely for the beginners compared to Akiki’s steep portions and Tawangan’s lengthy trek.

Climbing Pulag requires coordination with the local Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ protected area superintendent (PASU). The DENR Pulag National Park can be reached through PASU Mering Albas at +63 919 6315402. After reserving the entry date of your group, secure a chartered jeepney. Jeepney assignments are now arranged through the DENR-CAR. Our group’s preferred jeepney driver though is Mr. Guillermo “Emong” Cayat. Since Kuya Emong is already overseas, he has recommended a colleague, Mr. Israel Haban. His contact number is +63 930 6031150.

continue wandering here…