DISCOVER Fresno Agro Forestry and Eco Tourist Campsite – Read this Travel Guide before you visit!

TANAY, RIZAL is a place I’ll never get tired of visiting. Last September, 2019, I achieved a climb of 560 MASL with a combination of trekking, mountain and rock climbing without the use of any harness or special mountain climbing gears. This was an achievement unlock at the age of 41! Read the full story at https://bit.ly/2v8pdC4

We were invited again to see a new tourist attraction at Tanay, with only an idea of a hike and a campsite but we were in for a great surprise! Come and read along and discover another amazing Tanay Hane Adventure!

Entrance marker Fresno Agro Forestry and
Eco Tourist Campsite

FRESNO AGRO FORESTRY AND ECO TOURIST CAMPSITE

Location: Sitio Maysawa Brgy. Laiban/Cuyambay, Tanay, Rizal

Fresno Agro Forestry and Eco Tourist Campsite is the newest Hiking destination in Tanay, Rizal, owned by an IP named Mr. Mabini Dela Sada, and Merly ( a native Dumagat), developed and managed by Reynaldo Zapanta Fresno.

The advocacy of Fresno Agro is to provide livelihood programs to the Indigenous People from the (10) Mountains in different Barangays of Tanay , recognized to be an Ancestral domain, including non-IPs. Fresno Agro also promotes Eco – Tourism in the Municipality of Tanay. One of the advocacies of Fresno Agro Forestry, are :

Livelihood enhancement, preservation of the beauty of the mountains and to save our Mother Earth were among the advocacies of Fresno Agro Forestry. In coordination with the DENR, Fresno Agro started planting fruit bearing trees. You will also see that 90% of their employees are natives or “Katutubo” as well as 100% “Katutubo” serves as tour guides.

Mr. Reynaldo Fresno, developer of Fresno Agro Forestry

Things to do at Fresno❤

1. HIKING – Mt. Kulis and Mt. Sambong

To see the beauty of nature is to walk thru it – literally walk and climb up the mountains. There are 2 mountains to hike at Fresno – Mt. Kulis and Mt. Sambong.

Mt. Kulis

Mt. Kulis is the first mountain that will greet you at Fresno. It is a climb of 629 MASL (Meters above sea level). The mountains at Fresno is a hill type climb with narrow rough roads, and edges. Do not be fooled by the look of it as it is tiring once you are uphill. Ooopppsss, you can cheat climbing as a tricycle ride can take you uphill for just P20 for group of 3. The key to riding the trike is to put heavy bags at the back of the trike and put your weight it front. Though you will think that riding a tricycle is easier but your adrenaline will start to rush as you start braving the rough road ahead, plus get ready to brave the bumpy ride uphill. You might even consider walking for fear of getting thrown. But don’t worry, the tricycle drivers are all natives of the place so getting you up and down the steep hill would be easy. Cars are also allowed to go up (provided that there are available parking space). Mountain bikes, motorcycles, SUVs, Pick-up, sedan are also allowed. You have to be wary though of you and your vehicle’s capacity in climbing rough road terrain as there are no car/motor repair shops nearby.

Getting on top of Mt. Kulis by trekking is an achievement itself, but the hike is worth it. On top of Mt. Kulis you will be greeted by an incredible sight where I was urged to sing one of the Trapp Family’s “Sound of Music”. Everywhere you look there are green and mountains!

Mt. Sambong will be your second destination. Located at the back of Mt. Kulis is Mt. Sambong. As the name suggests there are a generous number of sambong plants in the area. Sambong is a native plant that is known for its healing properties for urinary, kidney, and hypertension problems. Climbing Mt. Sambong will just take you 3 minutes, but again you have to be prepared for a steep, rocky, up climb ahead. It is not advisable for elderly people specially on a hot weather. Parents should also take necessary precautions when taking kids on this hike. As there are rock formations on a cliff, perfect for instagram shoot and “buwis buhay shot” but a very dangerous area.

2. TREKKING – Noah’s Ark

After Mt. Sambong the guide will guide you to Noah’s Ark. Hiking to Noah’s Ark is optional. Getting there will take you 30 to 45 minutes depending on your pace. You have to be physically fit before embarking because the trail involves mountainous slopes, rocky and grassy areas. It is best if you start hiking at 5am to be at the summit around 6am perfect for the Sea of clouds.

Noah’s Ark

3. Achieve your squad goals at the SPIDER WEB

You might want to try the giant spider web before hiking up Mt. Sambong. The giant spider web is made of nylon ropes. To climb over I suggest you wear your rubber shoes before finally removing your shoes as you crawl thru the web. As the name suggests, it is best if you crawl like a spider to reach the center of the web. Then ask Manong (the tour guide) for your best IG shots.

4. Experience the thrill of riding a toro-toro

Going to Campsite B (Lion Falls, Flower Garden, Hanging Bridge, Twin Mountains) requires you to ride a toro-toro (a makeshift 4×4 vehicle), unless you want to tire yourself from the long walk. Riding on top of it will make you scream, you have to hold on tight. You have to try to feel the thrill!

5. Spider Hanging Bridge

The 1st drop for Campsite B is the Flower Garden but since we were so tired we opt to make it our last drop. It was a bumpy ride going to the Hanging Bridge. Once there, the view is breath taking. It is a perfect place for your pre-nup shoots, emo, or whatever you would want to call it. Be careful though as you would just hold on to the ropes designed as webs. I didn’t attempt to cross the bridge I just stayed at the middle haha! Only a maximum of 7 persons are allowed this is for safety purposes.

📸 Olan Chikka

6. Enjoy the view of the Twin Mountains

So once you are in the Hanging Bridge, be mindful to take a look around and you will see the Twin Mountains. The thing I love the most at Fresno is the breathtaking views of green landscapes everywhere.

7. See the Mini-River Falls

8. Swim at the Lion House Falls

It will take you 20 minutes to trek your way to the Lion House Falls. Going there will require you to step on rocks and steep vertical ladders. Once there, you will be greeted with a natural swimming pool with just the right level of coldness for you to dunk in. Kids can swim at the side where the water falls, make sure that adults supervises them well as there are areas that are 6ft deep.

Feel the cool waters at Lion House Falls

9. Flower Garden

This site was our last drop off for our guided tour. The Flower Garden is a man made heart garden shape. It have colorful and beautiful flowers. Depending on how you project a pose you could create different angles and beautiful photoshoots. Try shooting for pre-nup poses or relive your younger days.

10. Play with ducks and chickens

While waiting for our ride back to the Registration area, we noticed a flock of ducks and chickens. So, we kill the time by playing around, they love to go near people, trying their luck for some food. While waiting, we did some jump shot (haha! We still have some energy lol). And Conan, my little boy, suddenly screamed — the reason – the ducks came near him 😂

11. CAMPING

As we are staying here for an overnight, we reached the Registration area at 6pm and decided that we will have dinner there. We were served with “Siningang na Baboy“, “Papaitan”, and Pork menudo. We opt to leave the car at the Parking area near the Registration then had a tricycle ride going up again at Mt. Kulis. It was a horse back ride as you should hold on tight and place your weight in front of the vehicle, with heavy bags at the back and boys at the backride. The tricycle can only accommodate up to 3 persons, for safety purposes. We had the option to stay at “Cardo Dalisay’s” kubo but we chose to use the tents. Sleeping in tents is a perfect way to feel the cool weather and the “camping”.

The weather is cold but tolerable. We didn’t chose to pitch at the Mt. Sambong since it is too high up and there are no comfort rooms around. But upon seeing the Sea of Clouds, I wished I should have chosen the Mt. Sambong tent area.

12. Star gazing

This is one of the attractions here but of course it will depend on the current weather. On our stay, there weren’t so much stars but it was alright, since we were also too tired to gaze at the stars.

13. Sea of clouds

We were so blessed that the Sea of Clouds appeared. It was literally a sea of clouds, as the fog is so high that it even reaches the tents near us. The sea of clouds envelopes Mt. Sambong and Noah’s Ark. It appeared at 4am then lasted until 7:30am. It is a marvelous site! Someone even exclaimed: “We even went so far at Kalinga, Apayao just to experience sea of clouds, but here look just a few hours from Manila and the cool weather is so tolerable, that I actually enjoy viewing.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/B9ctWzxFyIl/?igshid=afcd80j9lux5

The Sea of Clouds is a natural beauty to behold. It sends a calming feeling. It was really beautiful!

14. Sight seeing

Hiking here at Fresno are all but optional. If your not into hiking, you will still enjoy the beauty of the place by just sight seeing on top of Mt. Kulis. The best place to stay and see the view is at the back dining area of the “Kainan sa Mt. Kulis.”

15. Act like Cardo Dalisay and Alyana

You may also take photos of “Bahay ni Cardo Dalisay”, the nipa hut where the long running tv show “Ang Probinsyano” took place.

16. Dine in at Kainan sa Mt. Kulis

Don’t be mistaken, there are no fancy restaurants here. If you want to try authentic “Dumagats dishes”, (native Tanay cuisine), try it here at the kainan beside “Cardo Dalisay’s” nipa hut.

17. Go Mountain Biking

We asked ourselves, can mountain bikes go up here? Then, suddenly, a group of bikers showed up! So the answer is Yes, Bikes can go up 😃

Rates

CAMPSITE A
📌A. Sight Seeing
Php 100 per head
– Mt. Kulis
– Mt. Sambong

B. Hiking
Php 150 per head
– Mt. Kulis
– Mt. Sambong
– Noah’s Ark

CAMPSITE B
📌A. Swimming & Hiking
Php 100 per head
-Lion House Falls
– Twin Mountain
– Mini-River Falls

📌B. Sight Seeing
Php 150 per head
– Hanging Bridge
– Flower Garden
– Lion House Falls

📌Day Trip Tour package:
Php 200/pax 4:00AM to 3:00PM
📌Day Trip Tour package with Hike, all destination including Hanging
Bridge and Spider Web : Php 300/pax
📌Overnight Tour Package with Hike and all destination: PHP 350/pax
*4:00PM to 1:00PM

ACCOMMODATION

⛺Kubo Rental
Day Trip : PHP 2,500.00
Overnight : PHP 3,500.00
(Good for 6)
⛺Kubo Rentals Near the Falls
Daytour Trip : PHP 500
Overnight: PHP 1000
(Good for 3)
⛺Kubo Rental Talahib
Day Trip : PHP 1,500.00
Overnight : PHP 1,500.00
(Good for 4)

*Kubo rental includes beddings

⛺Tent Pitching
Php 150

⛺Tent Rentals Php 400 (Good for 2) Php 600 (Good for 4)

There is no ROOM ACCOMMODATION

TOUR GUIDE

  • Required for Noah’s Ark and Lion House Falls
  • Php 500 up to 7pax

FOOD

Cooked foods, snacks, drinks are available at the Registration area and at Mt. Kulis. You can order a Tapsilog or tocilog for just P100. You also have the option of “paluto”, just ask Ate Janice at the Mt. Kulis.

OTHER INFO

  • NO RESERVATION NEEDED
  • No room accommodation, the place is purely a campsite
  • Open 24/7
  • Keep trash in its proper place
  • Do not leave cigarette butts, let’s maintain and protect the environment
  • Bonfires is not allowed
  • Barbeque is not allowed
  • The option for cooking is to bring a butane stove or request a “paluto” at the Kainan

Things to bring -you may check this list for things that will make your stay pleasurable

📌Jogging pants if you are staying overnight
📌Blanket
📌Towel
📌Toiletries
📌Short
📌Sports shirt
📌OOTD outfit *optional
📌Hat
📌Sunblock
📌Lotion
📌Camera
📌Cellphone
📌Powerbank (there is no electricity in the area, only solar panels run the street lights and Kainan
📌Memory Card
📌Water (with ALKAROCK for your portable alkaline water, message me on this for info) 📌Snacks, candies, food 📌Jacket

HOW TO GET THERE

How to get there:
🚐From Araneta Cubao (in front of Gateway Mall, along Aurora Ave), ride a jeepney (PHP 25 pesos) or van (PHP 35 pesos) going Cogeo Gate 2. Proceed to Cogeo Market (Blue and white building). Ride a jeepney (PHP 45 pesos, first trip 5:AM) going Sampaloc and ask the driver to drop you off at Sitio Maysawa.
🚐From Sitio Maysawa waiting shade, you can take a walk to Fresno Agro Forestry and Eco Tourist Campsite for 20 to 30 minutes, but you can also ride a tricycle for PHP 150 per way

Private Car 🚘

Just search Fresno Agro Forestry and Eco Tourist Campsite at Google Maps or Waze🔍

Fresno Agro Forestry and Eco Tourist Campsite
Sitio Maysawa Brgy, Tanay, Rizal
📞0999 553 4449
🇵🇭https://maps.app.goo.gl/Sf6ZH1GKswCmAaZt8

For more info, message them at the ff. Facebook page http://m.me/fresnoagroforestryandecotouristcampsite

DOT Tourism Tanay
Dr. Jeff Pino
📞 0998.9881590 / 87361059
📧 jeffpino2@gmail.com

Enjoying nature is 💯 stress reliever. Our experience was beyond my expectations. Enjoy the beauty, breathe in the fresh air. Be recharged, refreshed at Fresno Agro Forestry and Eco Tourist Campsite!

Our Sample Itinerary

MARCH 7, 2020 Saturday

  • 11am – Registration Area
  • 11:15am – Lunch
  • 11:50am – Started Hiking Mt. Kulis
  • 12NN – Mt. Kulis Peak
  • Freshen up at Bahay ni Cardo Dalisay
  • 12:10 – Spider Web
  • 12:25pm – Mt. Sambong
  • 12:30pm – Start trek to Noah’s Ark
  • 1:30pm – Noah’s Ark Summit
  • 2pm – Back to Registration area
  • 2:10pm – Ride toro-toro going to Hanging Bridge
  • 2:20pm – Hanging Bridge
  • 2:30pm – Started trek to Lions House Falls
  • 2:50pm – Arrived Lion’s House Falls
  • 4pm – Trek back to waiting area
  • 4:30pm – Ride auv going back to Registration area
  • 5pm – Stop by at Flower Garden
  • 5:15pm – Rode back going to Reception area
  • 5:45pm – Arrived Reception
  • 6:30pm – Freshen up, Dinnertime
  • 7pm – Back to Mt Kulis Camp
  • 10pm – lights off

March 8, 2020

  • 4:30am – Wake up, check Sea of Clouds
  • 5am to 7 am – Photo ops, enjoyed Sea of Clouds
  • 7:10am – Breakfast
  • 8am – 10am – More pictorial / Ready for check out

SIDETRIP

I would love to hear your thoughts at the comment section.

After checking out at Fresno, we headed to El Patio Razon for a refreshing Kawa Bath (full details soon). This is located just a few blocks from Fresno, you could walk your way to El Patio.

See more of Fresno on my FB page Diaries of a Transport Queen

Follow me on IG @thetransportqueen

https://www.instagram.com/p/B9f9vWpFfYC/?igshid=1rpji2iiwbk9l

Special thanks to my Vloggers squad, you made this trip extra special. Please follow them at YT Ria Marcelino Ria Marcelinohttps://youtu.be/lOLI-lQZ7YUand Olan Chikka of Vakla Ventures

DSWD Ikot sa CALABARZON B/Vloggers Squad with Sir Jimmy (Son of the lot owner of Fresno)

Follow me on my next adventure!

For sponsorships, email me at jenny.transportqueen@gmail.com

Disclosure: This tour is courtesy of Mr. Fresno of Fresno Agro Forestry. However, this article is written with my own opinions, thoughts and insights.

Join me on my next adventure!

Tanay: Your Travel Guide to the Home of Adventure and Nature Experience – The Transport Queen

TANAY, RIZAL – A perfect tourist spot for motorcycle roadtrips, mountaineeers, adventurers, and even for those who hates trekking but still wants to enjoy mountain views and bathe in refreshing waterfalls. Tanay is located east of Metro Manila, just a few hours away if your coming for the weekend. Commuting to Tanay is also easy as public utility transport is available at Cubao and Shaw Blvd.

tanay

I am glad to be invited for a FamTour activity for Bloggers sponsored by the Municipality of Tanay under Tanay Tourism Office, headed by Mr. Jeffrey M. Pino.

Tanay Tourism Jeff Pino

Mr. Jeffrey M. Pino, Tanay Tourism Officer

Of course I was excited the moment I was chosen to join the FamTour. Packed my things for the expected itinerary (I have a very huge baggage consisting of extra clothes, Maong jacket, toiletries, etc. I never run out of clothes to wear on a travel but usually I bring light clothes to wear – no maong pants, all shorts).

So I slept at around 8pm, and woke at 2am, left Cavite at 3:30am and arrived Cubao at 4:30am. Call time is at 5am, we waited for the whole team at Jollibee P. Tuason, Cubao.

Upon the arrival of Sir Aldren, our Tour Guide for the day, he welcomed us with seashell garlands. Courtesy of Honorable Mayor Rex Tanjuatco and the Tanay Tourism Office. It was such a warm welcome to start the day.

tanay tour

Read on as I start our journey to the Home of Adventure and Nature Experience – TANAY!

DISCOVERING TANAY!

1st Stop – Municipality of Tanay

Our first drop is the Municipality of Tanay where we were oriented on what to expect on our Daytour plus the town’s history and culture. “Hane” the common expression of the locals means “Is it Ok?”, or to get someone’s attention. Sir Jeffrey Pino adopted it and coined HANE on Tanay’s Tourism Slogan:

(H) Home of (A)Adventure and (N) Nature (E) Experience! HANE!

Town of Tanay history – A short village on Monte Tan-ay, now Inalsan. Under the jurisdiction of Pililla from 1573. Tanay became an independent parish under San Ildefonso in 1606. In 1620 it was transferred to San Antonio (Pan-tay). When San Antonio was burned in 1639. The people moved to the present site and founded the town in 1640.

Tanay Municipal Hall
Tanay Municipal Hall

We have full load of activities on the list which made us even more excited.

TANAY ITINERARY

2nd Stop – Tanay Church and Town Plaza

  • Location: M. H. Del Pilar St. , Tanay, Rizal

The ecclesiastical administration of Tanay belonged to Pilillia up to 1606 when the first Church was built. The first church was completed in 1783. Tanay Church is also commonly called Saint Ildefonsus of Toledo Parish. The Tanay Church was actually declared by the NCCA (National Commission of Culture and Arts) as a National Cultural treasure church.

Tanay Church

In front of the Tanay Church, was a dead 100-year old Acacia Tree where it was graced into life by turning it into a huge sculpture or Our Lady of Guadalupe and San Ildefonso de Toledo.

Our Lady of Guadalupe
Our Lady of Guadalupe

3rd Stop – Rambull’s Bakahan sa Tanay Fastfood Restaurant

  • Location: Manila East Rd., Tanay, Rizal

We picked up our packed breakfast and lunch at Rambull’s Restaurant – Bakahan sa Tanay. It was amply called “Bakahan” or cow/buffalo slaughterhouse, because it was located beside a “bakahan.”

Rambulls restaurant

They prepared us macaroni spaghetti with sandwich for breakfast, and Chicken Adobo with Chopsuey for lunch. Inside Rambull’s is a miniature cow bull statue where you can ride for photo ops. Rambull’s set-up is that of a common eatery, I have yet to try their Bulalo – if it’s meat is comparable to that in Tagaytay.

4th Stop – Daranak Falls

  • Location: Daranak Falls Rd., Tanay, Rizal

Getting to Daranak Falls is just about 20 minutes away from the town center. And kids and adults alike will enjoy the view of Daranak less the hassle of trekking. Yes, it has cemented pathways and it is just about up to 5-minute walk from the entrance.

Daranak Falls

Daranak Falls is one of the flagship destinations of Tanay and a popular summer get-away for locals and tourists from in and out of the country. Daranak Falls nestles at the foothills of the verdant mountains. Its main attraction is the 14-meter high waterfalls cascading into a deep catch basin that serves as its natural pool. Its stream feeding from the fascinating view and beautiful pieces of rocks. The stream flowed serenely through massive different rock formations, creating pools of jade green and blue crystal blue waters ending up in the deep catch basin of the waterfalls and rivers. – Hon. Rex Tanjuatco, Tanay, Municipal Mayor

We enjoyed the breathtaking view of the falls. Rainy season is the best season to view the beauty of Daranak, though be extra careful since the waters are raging fast. Most tourists flock here during Summer, when the waterfalls was just enough for bathing.

Take a look at the amazing Daranak Falls in this short clip;

TIPS and Budget:

  • No Liquor and drunk persons allowed
  • Operating Hours: 8am to 5pm
  • Adult and Children P50.00
  • Picnic Shed P300.00
  • Picnic Table P200.00

5th Stop – Calinawan Cave

  • Location: Barangay Tandang Kutyo, Tanay, Rizal

Situated just a few minutes away is the Calinawan Cave. It is said to be the hideout of the Japanese colonizers during World War 2. The Calinawan cave is a huge cave system which can reach up to 7 levels. But only 5 levels are available for public tours.

Calinawan Cave Tanay

For beginners, only Level 1 & 2 are for viewing. Levels 3 to 5 can be accessed but not during rainy days. The water inside the cave can reached up to waist deep. To trek Level 3 to 5, one must walk on his knees, so we were contented with exploring Level 1 and 2 where challenged also surprised us ahead.

Calinawan Cave Tanay

Calinawan Cave is a famous “shooting spot” for action movies both local and international films. The tour guides will take you into a historical yet fun trip while you explore the cave. They even let us experience “zero visibility” for 10 seconds. Yes, we didn’t SEE ANYTHING for 10 seconds of silence and off lights. It was a thrilling experience and I imagined how did the occupants survived their stay at the cave. Take note that Calinawan Cave once became a shelter of Japanese occupants during World War 2, it was their hospital and home. It is also said that during those times the cave leads to Montalban (now Rodriguez), Rizal and was walk-able for 9 days from end to end, they used this as a hideout and access to escape.

Calinawan Cave Tanay
Level 1 of Calinawan Cave

Calinawan cave tanay
At last, I survived going through Calinawan Cave. Remember to wear proper hiking shoes or sandals because you might end up carrying your rubber shoes to save it from the mud, like me, haha!

TIPS and Budget:

  • Entrance Fee P20.00/person
  • Guide Fee P100.00/person
  • Operating Hours: 8am to 5pm, sometimes they extend up to 6pm depending on the weather
  • Attire: Wear helmet, bring flashlight or headlight, wear proper hiking sandals or slippers, bring bottled water, tissue or wipes *it is muddy inside

It’s nice to travel solo or with group, but it’s best to have a travel buddy. Thanks to Milet Miranda of Project Gora, she’s been my constant companion, we assisted each other and took turns in taking photos.

project gora

6th Stop – Nagpatong Rock Formation

  • Location: Barangay Cuyambay, Tanay, Rizal

The highlight of our tour was the climb to Nagpatong Rock Formation.

Nagpatong Rock formation

We stopped at Brgy. Cuyambay, the jump off point, for a lunch. The locals prepared us a boodle fight of fish, ginataang puso ng saging (Banana heart in coconut milk), together with our packed lunch from Rambulls Restaurant – chicken adobo and chopsuey. We had a full lunch, just enough for the climb that we were about to take.

cuyambay

The tour guide had a short orientation before leaving Brgy. Cuyambay. Beginners like us might take about 2 hours to reach the Summit. Nagpatong Rock Formation is a 3.3 kilometer walk and with 560 MASL (metres above sea level).

Nagpatong Rock Formation is composed of 2 towering rocks facing each other. Ahead of Nagpatong Rock is Mt. Masungki (another 2 hours from Nagpatong base camp). Big rocks were formed on top of another, hence its name “Nagpatong.” Adjacent to the platform for tourists, the other rock, is a place for the tour guides to shot wonderful photos. They were trained to instruct tourists on how to achieve that “perfect shot.” It was wonderful to see numerous rock formation along the way. And while seeing all of these, makes me wonder “how did all these limestones get here?”, “why Tanay?.” In this inquiries of mine, our Tour guide Rhodel and Sir Aldren, however still tried to answer, they said that since a long, long time ago, the Philippines was buried in water, that only Palawan Island can be seen in the surface. That even Tanay was once buried in water. Hence, might be the explanation of the numerous rock formations as if the gods have played rocks and spread it in Tanay.

Hiking or trekking to Nagpatong is quite easy compare to that of Mt. Daraitan. For non-mountaineers like us, we took about 40 minutes to reach the 1st stop, where the sign of Nagpatong Rock direction can be seen.

mountaineering
Starting the trek

rock formation
Once in awhile I stopped by to take photos of the rock formations along the way. There are limestones and seeing these already satisfies the nature lover in me.

nagpatong rock formation
1st Stop – to Nagpatong, on the other side is the way going to Mt. Masungki

nagpatong rock formation
Welcome sign – the base of the Nagpatong Rock

tanay
Climbing the way to Nagpatong Rock Summit

Nagpatong Summit
Finally! Achieved Nagpatong Rock Summit! My legs were shaking at this point (heights, Aww!) so I comfortably find a spot where I can confidently positioned myself for a “buwis buhay” shot. It was also windy here so balance is important.

At my age, 40 (going 41 in 7 days after my climb), plus living mostly sedentary lifestyle, I considered it a BIG achievement to be able to trek the 2-hour walk going to Nagpatong – without panting and fainting. Also having a weight like mine made it difficult for me to climb over the rock. This is my VERY 1ST TIME and a dream come true for me to finally take what they call “buwis buhay” shot.

Special thanks to all the tour guides who assisted me, specially to Rhodel and Sir Aldren, and Kuya who never left my side during and after my trek to Nagpatong Rock. We wouldn’t make it to the top if it weren’t for their patience in guiding us along the way. They are so adept in the route and also minute by minute asking us if we still can continue, and informing us of what to expect along the way. Plus, they are good photographers!

tour guide
Kuya Rhodel and Kuya (sorry I didn’t got his name).

TIPS and Budget;

  • Rock/Mountain climbing is an extreme sport, never ever try if you have heart conditions, an asthma, a vertigo, or have fear of heights;
  • It is not for the faint of heart,
  • After climbing up the 2 storey wooden ladder, you will hold on to a tied rope and push yourself to climb over the big rock to go on the platform;
  • You may slip if you missed your step and fall;
  • Falling is fatal, climb at your own risk
  • Bring at least 1 liter of water (there’s no water to buy nor clean spring along the way);
  • Bring jellyace, gatorade or chocolate bars for energy and hydration
  • Apply Sunblock
  • It helped that I applied Haplos Ginhawa Moringa Oil as an anti-mosquito repellent as well as it instantly soothe my muscle
  • Bring a stick or be resourceful enough to get a bamboo stick along the way, it’s very helpful;
  • It is a nice hiking experience since most of the trail is an open area and flat,
  • The climb to Nagpatong base will take you 15 to 30 minutes of assault climb;
  • Wear comfortable clothes, travel light as much as possible
  • Registration Fee: P100/person
  • Guide Fee: P500 (maximum of 5 persons per guide)
  • Total climbing hours for beginners may take 5 hours (back and forth).
  • It is advisable to start early in the morning

The beauty of Nagpatong Rock inspired me to write a poem Life is Awesome, Live It!

7th Stop – Pico de Pino Cafe & Restaurant

  • Location: Brgy. Cuyambay, Marikina-Infanta Highway, Tanay, Rizal

After our very challenging Nagpatong Rock adventure, we headed to Pico de Pino Restaurant to freshen up and for snacks. We were already so tired to take photos of the place, I was glad Sir Aldren had these photos. I enjoyed the food especially the pancit and brewed coffee. They also have a small shop – perfect if you need to buy extra clothes, slippers or some souvenirs. I bought a pair of slippers to freshen up my feet (my rubber shoes and socks were wet and muddy), for just P150.

Pico de pino
Photo credits to Sir Aldren of Tanay Tourism Office

Pico de Pio restaurant.
We had fresh lumpia, pancit and a refreshing juice for snacks. Plus, a complimentary brewed coffee which tasted so good!

Pico de Pino
Photo credits to Sir Aldren of Tanay Tourism Office

8th Stop – 3 Springs Mountain Park, Tanay, Rizal

  • Location: Km. 56 Marcos Highway, Sitio Mayagay 2, Brgy. Cuyambay, Tanay, Rizal

Due to time limitation, instead of passing by at Ten Cents To Heaven, we headed straight to 3 Springs Mountain Park. But unfortunately, I together with 2 other bloggers didn’t make it to the lobby or restaurant of 3 Springs. Our van got stuck up in the mud, and folks have been trying to get it out and took about an hour before successfully pulling itself out of the mud. The three of us who were sitting at the back decided to stay inside the van for added weight (maybe it will help while they try to get the van out). But after about 15 minutes, the two of us, @peculiarlymade, decided to get down and walk towards the location of the 1st group of bloggers. Flock of students, tourist buses were already moving out, but we were moving forward to where they are coming from. Though tired from our already exhausted day of hiking, we enjoyed the view of sunset.

sunset
Sunset view at 3 Springs Mountain Resort

But we didn’t make it to the resort, the 1st batch who headed earlier were already coming back to where we came from. Said the dinner was cancelled because of the delay in our schedule. So, we also took a ride at their vehicle and head back. Once back, our van was still hopelessly trying to get up from the mud, and at last after about 5-8 minutes, our van was right on track! It was alright for me to finally be heading back home, after all, I miss my kids!

GET TO KNOW

Special thanks to Tanay Tourism Office (DOT Tanay) Sir Jeffrey M. Pino, for choosing me to be one of the bloggers for this FamTour and all the staff of Tanay Tourism for the warm welcome and accommodation. 

Tanay Tourism

Want to experience Tanay? Feel free to contact their local tourism office:

  • Tanay Tourism Officer Jeffrey M. Pino 0998-988-1590/7361059
  • Email: tanaytourism@gmail.com
  • Address: Ground Floor, New Tanay Municipal Hall, M. H. del Pilar St., Tanay, Rizal 1980
  • Contact numbers: (02) 6551773 loc 212-213 / 09985788199
  • Facebook page: Tanay Tourism

How to get to Tanay if your a DIYer:

  • You can ride a Van or jeepney at Starmall Edsa or Cubao or choose your options in this list – Commuting to Tanay
  • Once in Tanay, you can ride a tricycle going to places
  • It is best to get to the destinations by private car (preferably SUV for areas with rough road)

We missed these destinations though in our itinerary;

  • A feel of 3 Springs Mountain Resort
  • Ten Cents to Heaven – Team Building Venue, Longest Zip Line in Luzon
  • Bakasyunan – Bali of Tanay
  • Parola/Lakeshore – Panoramic View of Sierra Madre Mountain Range, Mt. Makiling, Mt. Banahaw, Talim Island, Tagaytay City. Perfect Sunrise/Sunset photography.

Now as of this writing, and checking on the web about those destinations that we missed, my passion for adventure was ignited, and I am longing to go back to Tanay and consider an overnight stay for more ADVENTURE! I am inspired to get fit so I can brave the other mountains of Tanay! We can do it, TANAY, HANE!

Special thanks to my Tanay Bloggers Family for making the tour a fun, and unforgettable tour to remember, follow their blogs too!

Tanay Bloggers Fam Tour
Tanay Bloggers Fam Tour Team

For more photos of my Tanay Adventure, click here Tanay Daytour Travel Guide  and Nagpatong Rock, follow me at my social media accounts:

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The Garage at City of Dreams Manila

Meeting at City of Dreams with business partners, friends and family is our regular habit. We usually hang out at Starbucks, or at Casino to play. I’m glad that now City of Dreams has The Garage, perfect for hang-out and family meet-ups.

The Garage is a VR (Virtual Reality) Zone and Food Park that enable guests to delve into immersive Virtual Reality games experience while enjoying the casual dining experience. Though, I haven’t yet tried the VR Games but will soon try it out with my fambam.

Here’s a glimpse of what you can see and what to eat at The Garage City Of Dreams.

VR ZONE

The Garage’s VR Zone features a new generation entertainment facility that uses top of the class VR Technology. It is meant for the strong-willed and wanted to experience the extra-ordinary thrill and adrenaline experience.

Tickets are available on site. Single player ticket price is available at P450 nett; while packages are available for those playing in groups or pairs: P800 nett for two persons playing Ski Rodeo; P1, 200 per person for three activities; and P1, 600 nett for a group of four persons playing Hospital Escape Terror or Mario Kart GP VR.

VR ZONE

Hospital Escape Terror – This immersive horror room game is open to thrill-seekers ages 13 years old and above. Hospital Escape Terror’s players have the goal to escape and survive altogether the dark, cursed, and abandoned hospital within nine minutes while being restrained on a wheelchair.

Hospital Escape Terror
Hospital Escape Terror

Immersive Horror Room
Immersive Horror Room

VRZONE

Conan trying out the VR machine

VR ZONE OPERATING HOURS
  • Sunday – Thursday : 12PM – 1PM
  • Friday – Saturday : 12PM – 12AM
  • Food & beverage outlets (except The Roaster)
  • Sunday – Thursday : 11AM – 11pm
  • Friday – Saturday : 10AM – 12AM

FOOD BLOG BANNER

PINKS
Serving yummy sausages from Pink’s!

farmacy
FARMACY Ice cream & Soda Fountain

pizza pasta
Pizza Pasta by Pizza Grigliata Manila

Bucket N Basket
Enjoy a beer at Bucket N Basket

Bucket N Basket

Bucket N Basket Menu

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
Hokkaido Ramen Santouka

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka
Hokkaido Ramen Santouka

the roaster
We enjoyed brewed coffee at The Roaster

The Chip Shoppe
The Chip Shoppe

The Chip Shoppe
The Chip Shoppe Menu

Chocolate
Chocol8 features handcrafted chocolates in a number of shapes and forms, and are enhanced with special ingredients such as fruits, nuts, and spices. Yummy chocolate pieces which you can buy per 100 grams.

With spacious dining and areas for coffee, beer or just hanging out.

THE GARAGE CITY OF DREAMS

THE GARAGE CITY OF DREAMS

THE GARAGE CITY OF DREAMS

THE GARAGE CITY OF DREAMS

THE GARAGE CITY OF DREAMS

They also have live performances from time to time.

We have tried coffee from The Roasters and some Japanese food.

the roasters
Coffee Mocha at The Roaster

Japanese food
We tried this chicken bento at Katsu Sora. A food truck specializing in Japanese cuisine.

Highly recommended if you just want to lazy around, and grab some snacks with the whole family. City of Dreams is not just for playing Casino, just wander around and you’ll see child-friendly places like The Garage and Dreamplay. A very  IG-worthy place to hang around without breaking your budget.  Your kids and kids at heart will surely enjoy!

FAMILY

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Yoki’s Farm – What you need to know and why you should pay a visit

Farm tour is one of the activities our family loves to do. Last year alone, we have visited around 5 farms. And this time, we visited a surprisingly unique farm in Mendez, where almost all of what we love to do are rolled into one farm experience!

Tagaytay tour itineraries seem to be the same over and over and this wo nderful farm may be a sweet addition to your travel list.

So what did we discovered at Yoki’s Farm? And why you should include this on your next Metro-Tagaytay itinerary, find out here:

Yoki’s Farm

📍Located at 003 Tabluan Road, Palocpoc 1, Mendez, Cavite

📍 Contact (046) 4097527, 09178079588 / 0464097527

📍 E-mail yoki_farm@yahoo.com

📍 Like their fb page at Yoki’s Farm

YOKIS FARM MAP
FARM MAP Conan is excited to explore!

Yoki’s farm is a 10-hectare farm brainchild and owned by Mr. Wilson Ong nicknamed Yoki founded in 1996. Right now, only 4-hectare of it are used for tours, the other parts of the farm are still off limits to guests. It is the biggest hydroponic farm in CALABARZON and managed by his son. Plans for development like having additional playgrounds for children and a resort are on its way and which we can expect in the future.

YOKI'S FARM
Kids enjoyed their learning of hydroponics farming. Yoki’s farm is the biggest hydroponics farm in CALABARZON

Touring Yoki’s Farm

1. Hydroponics Farm – Hydroponics farming fans will surely enjoy their visit at the largest hydroponics farm at Calabarzon which is the Yoki’s Farm. Hydroponics is a subset of hydroculture, which is a method of growing plants without soil by instead using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent. In Yoki’s they grow their plants in coconut husks. The tour has a 15-minute orientation to learn about hydroponics farming.

HYDROPHONICS
Yoki’s farm is the largest Hydrophonics Farm in Calabarzon

HYDROPHONICS FARM

You can pick and pay for just Php 100, and pay Php 200/kilo of Lettuce varieties

basil

LETTUCE
Violet lettuce variety

LETTUCE FARM
These lettuce are grown from coconut husks and of course water.

2. Vegetation of all types – we saw a variety of vegetation growing in the farm this includes tomatoes, cucumbers, papaya, bittermelon (ampalaya), Chilli, among others.

magtanim ay di biro
Papaya, ampalaya and other vegetables

3. Mulberry Trees – We were amazed at how big their mulberry fruits are, indicating the rich soil of the farm.

MULBERRY FRUIT
Stop and pick some mulberry fruits as you tour around the farm

MULBERRY tree
Mulberry tree

4. Orchidarium and  ornamental plants – Yoki Farm grows orchids and they sell it too!

orchidarium
Orchidarium

FLOWERS

5. Aviary – the farm showcases different collections of birds, dwarfed chickens, peacocks, parrots are just a few of their aviary collections.

pheasant
Golden Pheasant

EAGLEAVIARY

Lady Amheist Peasant
Lady Amheist Peasant Origin: China, Myanmar

PEACOCK
Common Peafowl

PEACOCK 2

As if entertaining the guests, the common peafowl showed off her feathers

peacock
A peacock at the Buddah Museum displaying her majestic feathers

Parrots
They have a display of different colored variety of parrots

AVIARY
There are different varieties of birds in these aviaries, and small chickens are roaming around the area too!

6. Reptile Park

tortoise
Tortoise their shells are really hard!

SNAKE
Albino Burmese Python

frog
Can you see me? ask the little frog

snake
Snake

turtles
Turtles

7. Inter-active zoo – Get up-close and personal with your favorite zoo animals!

Parrot
At first, I was hesitant to try the parrot ride at Conan’s shoulders, but after trying it myself I think he can do it too! Quite afraid but he loved the experience!

parrot
Me saying to this creature – “Stand still! haha!”

ZEBRA
Zebra

INTERACTIVE zebra
See how happy Conan is feeding the amiable zebra!

pony
You can get up-close to the pony but still be careful not to stand behind

OSTRICH
Hello Guests! this ostrich seem to say! Look at how cute she smiled at the camera. Photo credits to my daughter @juliennecolene

savanah
This is the area where the ponies and goats freely roam. Encased are the zebras and ostriches.

8. Museum – Here you will see the vast collection of Mr. Yoki’s Buddha sculptures and other interesting finds. He loves collecting antique made of bronze and brass sculptures. Among his collections are pieces of sculptures depicting some god/goddesses from other lands. There are I think a thousand collections of ceramics, porcelains, Buddha sculptures, Egyptian statues, bronze wares, jade model ships, vases of all types, and other interesting items including SULTAN (A head sculpture which seemed to open its eyes at night). There are also other items like old telephones, typewriters, and creepy things too! He also have a collection of wine and liquor bottles. Good thing Marie Kondo is not trending at the time, or else we might not be enjoying these collections. It is as if Mr. Yoki wouldn’t want to throw anything and that made it into this huge court of antique collections. I thought I might find the dragon statue here, lol! Pls. check out my fb page for more photos Diaries of a Transport Queen

buddha
You will be welcomed by the biggest laughing Buddha in the Philippines

photogrid_15583952872058688992192250788997.jpg

god/goddessYokis farm

Green Jade Dragon Boat
Green Jade Dragon Boat

bronze
Bronze collections

collection of typewriters
I was surprised to see a collection of typewriters too!

9. Accommodation – To complete your farm experience, you can check in at any of their available rooms. The rooms are clean, and with an old look homey feel. Check out the room that is most convenient for you or your family. All rooms are inclusive of breakfast and farm tours. 

YOKIS FARM ROOM
TWIN/DOUBLE Rate: P4,500 good for 2 inclusive of breakfast

Premiere room
Premiere good for 4 persons, Rate: P7,200 inclusive of breakfast

family room

Family room, Rate: P9,000 good for 5 inclusive of breakfast

swimming pool
Swimming pool for guests with accommodation

room rates
Contact them at the numbers posted here

10. Farm to table restaurant – I love the concept from the restaurant interior and of course the farm to table concept of food preparation. Freshly picked vegetables will be served. Staffs are all friendly and will ask you from time to time if you need anything else. We also loved the big servings of their dishes. 

All day breakfast restaurant
Dining area of their farm to table restaurant.

Yoki’s Signature SaladFreshly picked vegetable salad with mulberry and edible fruit . This salad would be much better if the dressing weren’t mixed at the time of serving. It cooked the lettuce which lessened its crispiness. Also, it is great if there’s a choice for other type of dressing like the famous TID or Ceasar’s. I love the generous addition of mulberry fruits.

vegetable salad
Yoki’s Signature Salad P290, the bowl is big good for the whole family to enjoy

American Breakfast – Generously served soft scrambled egg, sausage, bacon, grilled tomato, and sliced toast. This plate is too big and can fill up good for 2 persons. I love the sausage and bacon!

American Breakfast

American Breakfast – Sausage, bacon, tomatoes and egg sandwich, P320

Mediterranean Chicken Skewers – grilled chicken, onion, bell pepper, garlic yoghurt sauce, pita bread or buttered rice

Mediterranean chicken skewers
Mediterranean chicken skewers P295

Mushroom Arugula – white sauce, shitake mushrooms, button mushrooms, arugula. Arugula is a popular vegetable and salad ingredient that is full of nitrate and very good for your health – Medical News Today. It was my first time to try a very healthy pizza like this, the sauce is yummy and offers a different taste to your palate.

pizza
Mushroom Arugula P325

Tenderloin Beef Tapa – homemade beef tenderloin tapa, fried egg, garlic rice, salted egg and tomato relish. This dish is a YES for me! I love the softness of the beef and the sauce it’s a twist to the usual beef tapa.

beef tapa
Tenderloin Beef Tapa P290

Parmesan Crusted Fish Fillet – white fish, dill cream sauce, garlic tomato quinoa, French beans

fish fillet
Parmesan Crusted Fish Fillet P290

Beef Kebab – tenderloin beef, onion, bell pepper, garlic yoghurt sauce, buttered rice

Beef Kebab
Beef Kebab P295

DRINKS – If you are a fan of vegetables you better try the basil lemonade and pipino calamansi. I tried the Pipino Calamansi Fresca and the taste was more of cucumber, I hope they can improve on this one by balancing the calamansi with the cucumber. The strawberry yogurt was a refreshing treat.

drinks
From left to right – Pipino Calamansi Fresca P85, Basil Lemonade P85 and Strawberry yoghurt smoothie P185

TABLE
Have a coffee or two at this garden table

all day breakfast restaurant
Restaurant crews were stationed here

11.  Landscapes – Enjoy taking photo ops at their green landscapes

fun
Of course, what do kids love but to run and run!

jump shot
In this side of the landscape, is a wooden fence overlooking trees and vast grass greeneries. We thought of having a jump shot! We had fun trying to have a good shot!

YOKI
Landscapes

landscape
Japanese inspired parks perfect for your photo ops

landscapes
Tired of walking from the tour? then take some time to sit and relax at this Japanese inspired mini park

12.  Playground

playground
Time to play!

playground
Happy at play!

Yoki’s Farm Farm Rates

YOKI'S FARM RATES

The Farm Table Menu

MENU
photo grabbed from Yoki’s fb page

YOKIS MENU
photo grabbed from Yoki’s fb page

The Transport Queen Experience

We enjoyed our tour with the assistance of tour guide Ms. Katherine, who cheerfully answered all our queries during our farm tour.

tour guide
Our Tour guide for the day

Comparing to those we have seen so far, this one is the biggest plus there are variety of things you can see aside from vegetation alone. The collection of animals are also interesting and we noticed that there are no unusual smell which is common in some farms. Their farms are well kept, clean and not smelly. The animals seem to be taken care of properly. The ponies though as mini as they seem still should be tied to a tree when guests are roaming, during our visit one of the male ponies went on to one of the female (of course, we got scared). But the staffs handled it all fairly well. It was a pleasant experience for adults and kids alike to get a close encounter with the animals, feel their environment and get to know more about them. My little kid loved the farm, he also loved running on the landscapes and jumping here and there. He really loved the visit that we find it difficult to get him to say goodbye to the place, ha! ha!

I enjoyed looking at the vegetation, in some farms I’ve visited there are only the same types of vegetables like lettuce, basil and some herbs. Here at Yoki’s there’s a wide variety of vegetables they grow which includes ampalaya which I seldom see at other farms we visited.  I saw some tomatoes and cucumbers falling off the ground and unharvested, I wish they do something about it to prevent the foods from being wasted.I love art and sculptures, and their museum out beaten all the museum we visited comparing to Bencab and Orlina Museum, they have an awesome collection of brass sculptures from different cultures.  We suggested though to put labels in the collection so we can know where those came from, from what era, if it’s antique or just replica.

child at play

Plus, you can feel the personal touch of the owner, the collections speaks of the owners rich love for sculpture and history, the vast love for his collections which was kept and continued on by his son. It was really an awesome experience!

Yoki’s farm is highly recommended for kids and kids at heart. For educational tours, and those who want to learn hydroponics farming. You can be a Farmer for the day for just P1,500! I would definitely wanted to be back at Yoki’s Farm!

LEARN HYDROPONICS

Like my facebook page to see more awesome photos of our visit at Yoki’s Farm at Diaries of a Transport Queen

yokis farm

A day at Yoki’s Farm with The Happy Tandem @standoutconan

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And thanks to my #Southbloggers family follow them too! @travelwithkarla, @thinkablebox, @taralet’sanywhere and especially to @hapyandbusytravels   

Disclosure: Our food and farm tour was sponsored by Yoki’s Farm. However, I wrote this article with full honest opinion. 

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Yoki's Farm

Museo Orlina – A Virtual Tour

It was a fine Saturday, and our family decided for a quick get-away to Tagaytay. I was thinking of places we haven’t visited yet, and finally decided to check out Museo Orlina – which I’ve been seeing mostly in google searches for places to visit in Tagaytay. Finally, we arrived.

It was a 30-minute drive from Gen. Trias going to Museo Orlina in Tagaytay. You could easily find the place using Google Map or Waze. The road leading to Museo Orlina is steep, so better be careful esp. those with vehicles.

Museo Orlina is a former residence of the internationally acclaimed Artist/Sculptor Ramon Orlina. It was one his dreams which finally came true to have a museum of his artworks. The building design itself is an artwork and once you get inside numerous glass sculptures will greet you.

My husband asked me “I think your getting fond of art these days?” After featuring the carvings of Paete with ice, wood, and fruit as mediums now I get to see Glass Sculptures. Once inside, we instantly recalled the Bencab Museum of Baguio City. One can compare the almost identical ambiance of the building and the garden. But the main difference is the medium or instrument used to display the art.

Museo Orlina’s glass display is very UNIQUE & AMAZING. I instantly thought of having one these pieces as a piece of furniture, a design maybe on the living room or on the bedroom. One can relate the artwork and can actually use for everyday living since the artwork designs are minimalist and modern.

Let me take you to a virtual tour!

GALLERY

museo orlina
Replica of the 1976 original glass sculpture

museo orlina

museo orlina

museo orlina

museo orlina

museo orlina

museo orlina

museo orlina

The Sculpture Garden

OPERATING HOURS:

  • Tuesdays to Sundays (Closed on Mondays, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day)
  • 10am to 6pm

ADMISSION FEES:

  • Adults and Professionals P100
  • PWD, Senior Citizens, Students with Valid ID P80

CONTACT INFO:

MUSEO ORLINA
📌Hollywood Subdivision Road, Brgy. Tolentino East, Tagaytay City 📌Landline: (046) 413.2581
📌Mobile: 0906.434.0862 📌Email: info@museo-orlina.org
📌Website: http://www.museo-orlina.org

The Transport Queen’s Experience:

Location: 👸👸👸👸👸

Ambiance: 👸👸👸👸👸

Things to see: 👸👸👸👸

Things to do: 👸👸👸

Price: 👸👸👸👸

Recommendation: Over all visiting the Museo Orlina can be a real family bonding experience. The only thing that we were not able to do is the interactive activity as shown in the brochure. Some parts of the art galleries are closed for renovation or cleaning I guess. The Cafe is also closed at this time. But despite of this, one can enjoy the art of Museo Orlina. I can say it is a “must place” to visit in Tagaytay specially when you have younger ones with you.

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Top Things to do in Paete, Laguna

Paete is a simple town located nearby Pagsanjan and Liliw, Laguna. The ambiance of the place offers you a laid-back feel, back to old Filipino cultural days, and traveling around town is easy. I went to Paete for the second time and bring along my Roadmates with me. The time spent was all worth it, here, take a look at the top things to do when you find yourself in this place of Luzon.

Let’s Go! 

1. Climb to Tatlong Krus Lenten season is getting near. Why not place Paete on top of your itinerary? Offer a sacrifice by marching your way up to Tatlong Krus. Climbing your way is never easy, always check your health condition with a doctor before attempting to climb, going up will take around 500 steps. 

How to get there?

1st Option – From the town of Paete, climb your way up (around 500 steps). There are guided rails along the way, but climbing is never easy since there is no straight walkways up, steps are stairway type so you have to get your knees ready.

2nd Option – If you have your service car, you will have to drive up the mountain (zigzag roads), and drop off where the sign (Tatlong Krus) are. This is the option we chose, and after the Tatlong Krus we walk our way down to our next things to do.

photogrid_1546597508167615379135842161075.jpg

 2. Refresh at Matabungca Falls – Either you climb up or just jump off at Tatlong Krus, there’s no better way to refresh yourself than to bask in the cold water of Matabungca Falls. There are no private accommodation near the area. However, there is one bathroom provided by the Municipality if you wanted to change clothes, water for rinsing is also directly coming from the falls, and mind you — you can drink it! We tried it, totally refreshing!

falls

3. Learn Ice Carving – Enjoy art and learn art. On the Carving Capital blog post feature of Paete, I posted mostly of wood carvings and artworks. Now, I also tried ice carving.

Ice Carving Demo Fee: P2,200 – inclusive of 2 ice blocks to be carved, transportation and carver’s talent fee.

I got to enjoy  Ice Carving with the Honorable Mayor of Paete, Mayor Rojilyn “Mutuk” Bagabaldo who is very eager to show tourists how ice carving is being done. He is a very hands-on Leader of this small town, catering to tourist whenever he is available.

51007035_297221154320061_1029427107354116096_n

4. Learn Wood Carving – Though I didn’t got to try hands-on wood carving, watching their handicrafts is a real pleasure. Imagine, looking at these canvass, we cannot fathom how they do it on the same exact manner without a duplicating machine just pure hand work, amazing!                                          

      Wood Carving Demo Fee: P400
5. Learn Fruit & Vegetable Carving – The best food carvers came from Paete, you can check it on google and see their amazing works. I didn’t get the chance to watch fruit carving live because it took us some time to freshen up from our climb in Tatlong Krus, maybe next time I can get to see fruit & vegetable carving in person.

Fruit & Vegetable Carving Demo Fee: P1,400

Food-Carving

Photo credits to Pat Mateo.  Check out full article at F&B Report

6. Connect with the Taka Ladies and learn Papier-mache making. – This is my second time to meet the Taka Ladies and introducing these group of ladies to my roadmates was an awesome experience! When you visit Paete, get to meet these ladies, ask their stories and schedule for a demo. 

Papier-mache Demo Fee: P400

7. Complete your Instagrammable home art collections – Bring extra pocket money to buy something for your home. Most of these were made of wood and paper. I hoarded tissue holder boxes in square, round and rectangle shape for our home and as souvenir give-aways. I also bought one for our kitchen. Mommies, daddies, sons and daughters will surely enjoy choosing from these artistic crafts. These are ranging from paper crafts to wooden crafts, which also includes some toys. 

51477522_1470334513097552_7786251047328022528_n8. Recollect at St. James The Apostle Parish Church or simply known as Paete Church – Catholicism is very evident in this town and old traditions are still being practiced liked the sounding of the bell during a funeral parade, which we happened to witness during our tour. You may also visit other big churches near the Municipal Town Area. You may check other information of the Paete Church on this link Paete Church51162310_310250742964211_7337675858250825728_n9. Visit the Organic Farm – One of Mayor Mutuk’s project is converting raw land to Organic Farms. I happened to know that this Project exists from our last DSWD Learning Visit, and Mayor Mutuk himself described how he envisions on expanding the farm. Most of the land in Paete has been barren and needs to be treated to convert into farming. When I get back to Paete, visiting the farm will be on my next list. 

10. Taste their native delicacies – at the corner of a street in Paete, you will find these delicious snacks. 

This is made from coconut milk and casava topped with margarine.These are caramelized camotes, and on the lower right are  “maruya” -fried banana with sugar

11. Kape Kesada Art Gallery – Coffee and art, anyone? Well, this is the perfect spot to relax after you are done with your tour or with your shopping. It is just along the main street leading to the Paete Municipal Hall. Kape Kesada is a coffee shop and an art gallery. Interesting pieces of sculpture and portraits can be found. Too bad they do not allow posting of pictures of the art gallery on social media.12. Give a portion of yourself! Do outreach Program for the Taka Ladies or the people of  Brgy. Papatahan. Our Coop had a paper and clothes donation drive and the appreciation of Paete people is priceless!

There we go with our TOP THINGS TO IN PAETE, LAGUNA. I hope you find the list enjoyable and easy to do. Do share us your stories of your own explorations of this little quiet town. For an easy – breezy trip, don’t forget to book your tour with ROAD RENT A CAR  Transport Service Cooperative. 

Want more travelWant more travel stories? Click FOLLOW 👇 for updates 👩‍🎤For Sponsorship and collaborations, pls. e-mail me at jenny.transportqueen@gmail.com48343390_2076354385766758_1438694648364138496_n

DSWD Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), SLP AT Kalahi-CIDSS Programs – Learning Visit – Ikot sa CALABARZON- Part 3

If you have been following these 3-part blog series of our DSWD Learning Visit, we already have tackled 2 of the most popular program of DSWD – 4Ps and SLP.  Now we are going to see the project Kalahi-CIDSS, what it is, and what are the impacts of the projects to the community.

 It was a beautiful Saturday morning, and we checked out early from Patio Rizal Hotel and headed to Mauban, Quezon. It was an hour drive from Lucban. We stopped over at the nearby road where our next destination was, while waiting for the other van who fetched the LGU Officer at the City Hall. We enjoyed the green sceneries, it is noticeable that Quezon is one of the largest producer of copra (coconut). And it is also evident as well in Mauban. 

DSWD Ikot sa Calabarzon

Our next community we visited is located at Brgy. Remedios II, Mauban, Quezon, take a quick tour to this awesome town hidden from the highway.

Brgy. Remedios river
Breathtaking view of the town’s river, where the residents still use the flowing water to wash their clothes, kids take a bath here too!

Our vehicle stopped by a river, and we walked and crossed 2 hanging bridges. This is the only means to get to the baranggay. Safety while crossing the Kinaimit River to get inside and outside the community has been a long time problem of the residents. The previous hanging bridge they were using were already damaged by Typhoon Glenda. The broken bridge had affected the delivery of assistance and had delayed the emergency response to the community. Children and farmers are the most affected as they are the ones who frequently goes in and out of the community. With this experience, the residents worked together and proposed to apply for Kalahi-CIDSS to helped them with the construction of a new hanging bridge.

This is the landmark going to the bridge leading to Brgy. Remedios
Main sources of livelihood in the area are copra and horse transportation (rentals).

Aside from the need of a hanging bridge, the Remedios Elementary School Annex A used to have only three classrooms catering to around 150 students from Kinder up to Grade Six. These rooms weren’t enough to hold classes which are adequate for the learning needs of the students. Thus, they proposed to build an additional three-classroom school building through the funding assistance of Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, a development partner of DSWD’s Kalahi-CIDSS. 

So What is Kalahi-CIDSS?

“Kalahi-CIDSS, otherwise known as the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services, is one of the poverty alleviation programs of the Philippine Government being implemented by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).” –read more here

Comparing to 4PS and SLP, the Kalahi-CIDSS caters to communities which 1) belong to the poorest area; 2) priority for those who are considered as calamity-stricken communities; 3) with the recommendation of the LGU whose community to prioritized for the fund.

The residents had a meeting and pinpointed their most important priority to be done for the community and come up with  these 2 projects (Hanging Bridge and  additional classroom buildings), they are the ones who made the proposal, provided for the documents needed and the residents actually monitored and were hands-on during the purchasing of materials, construction up to finishing of the project.  Through this “Bayanihan” the residents were able to lower the costs, and instead of hiring construction companies and workers, the volunteer-residents did it themselves and were paid compensation for the work. They said they have a feeling of ownership of the project thus lead them to take care of   it even more. They even discipline and reprimands other residents who abuses the use of the hanging bridge.


Brgy. Remedios II, Mauban, Quezon  residents

Hanging bridge sub-project

  • Total Project Cost: Php461,046.00 
  • No. of households served: 118 households
The Hanging Bridge Project of KALAHI-CIDSS

1-unit 3-classroom school building sub-project (AusAID)

  • Total Project Cost: Php2.46 Million
  • No. of households served: 152 households

The building of the new hanging bridge brought convenience to the residents, and as per one resident said “It is a benefit that is not financial per se, but of convenience to us. We used to cross the river when the bridge was broken, there was no other way for us to get to town except for the hanging bridge. We can now carry sacks of rice, copra without worrying being swept into the river. However, the animals (carabao and horses) still needed to cross the river. We do not allow people with animals to use the hanging bridge, this is to protect it so we can use it on a longer time.”

I remembered I asked the residents;

Me: Why didn’t you build a concrete bridge in order for vehicles or animals to cross over too?”

Resident: We are thinking of the immediate solution for the community and beside there are only but few who have vehicles here. We acted on the urgency of the need for our children, the students who goes to school. 

For the new classroom, the volunteers are very proud of this achievement, even one mother said she was pregnant then, when she volunteered to assist in the documentation, she went to and forth their Baranggay Captain and to the Municipality to sign documents, she even participated in the construction helping the workers in mixing the cement, the ladies cooked meals for the workers. Most of them who volunteered were housewives because their husbands have to focus on their livelihood. But on free days their husbands do their share to in helping with the construction.  This volunteer mommy, were even called “Kalahi” and she said even her son got “Kalahi” as his nickname. 

The new school building with 3 classrooms

The residents’ involvement in the project played a major role on how the residents take care of the given projects by the Government. They learned first hand the financial, the due processes a project needs before it materializes. Though of course, they are being assisted still with licensed engineers, the DSWD officials and the local LGU. They have yearly budget of P10,000 for the maintenance of these structures.

The community prepared their native dishes for our lunch and I enjoyed them. 

Most of their meals are flavored with coconut milk as these are abundant in the area, we had laing, adobong manok (looks more of tinola), pancit habhab and bico (sweet rice).

After visiting the project beneficiaries of Kalahi-CIDSS, I learned to appreciate the Government efforts in reaching out to the poorest people. If your not exposed to this type of communities, and been only seeing the situation in Manila and the media, you will think that the only project the DSWD have are calamity assistance, repacking of goods, and the like. Being exposed to these type of DSWD projects opened my mind that there are so much more the agency have to offer. We just to need to RESEARCH and REACH OUT. 

Information are in just one touch of a finger thru the internet,  you may check the ff: website for more information of the DSWD Programs and services: DSWD information

Here’s a list of the DSWD Programs and Services: Source: DSWD mini-handbook

  • Tulong Medikal (Medical Services)
  • Tulong Pampaaral (Educational Assistance)
  • Tulong Pampalibing 
  • Tulong Pamasahe
  • Pagbibigay ng Food Packs (Kapag May Disaster)
  • Cash for Work / Food for Work
  • Social Pension para sa mga indigent na Senior Citizen
  • Supplementary Feeding Program
  • Pagsagip sa mga Batang Napababayaan at Naninirahan sa Lansangan
  • Solo Parent Id
  • Programa at Serbisyo para sa mga PWD
  • Travel Clearance para sa mga Menor De Edad
  • Programa at Serbisyo para sa mga Kababaihang Biktima ng Pang-aabuso
  • Lingap at Gabay para sa May Sakit (Lingap sa Masa)
  • Sustainable Livelihood Program
  • Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program

Beneficiaries selection process:

The current process in selecting beneficiaries are those included in the Listahanan. 
“The Listahanan or the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction (NHTS-PR) is an information management system that identifies who and where the poor are in the country. The system makes available to national government agencies and other social protection stakeholders a database of poor families as reference in identifying potential beneficiaries of social protection programs.” 

See more information on the Listahanan here –About Listahanan

If you think you are eligible for any of this programs and are not receiving any information or benefits, you may visit your Local Government Unit to check if your listed as indigent, if not, you may request to be added and the LGU MSWD officer will check on your current situation, they may do some investigation to prove your eligibility.

Pantawid Pamilya Pilipino Program Summary:

Benefits:

  • P300 every month per child studying in Elementary
  • P500 every month per child studying in High School
  • Up to maximum of 3 children are covered 
  • P500 every month in each household

Conditions of the Program:

Before a beneficiary received any benefits, they must oblige with the following:

  • School attendance of not  less than 85% per month
  • Monthly check-up of children 0-5 years old and pregnant women
  • De-worming of school children twice in one year
  • Monthly attendance to Family Development Sessions (FDS)

Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP) Summary:

Target:

  • Families listed in the Listahanan (mentioned above)
  • Beneficiaries of 4Ps or families listed as indigents
  • Belonging to vulnerable sector such as native tribes, senior citizens, PWDs, out-of-school youth and others

Modalities:

  • Skills Training
  • Seed Capital Fund
  • Pre-employment assistance fund
  • Cash for building livelihood assets

I know somehow, you are enlightened with these different programs of DSWD. And I’m sure you still have a lot of questions, you may reach DSWD at the ff:

  • Office address: DSWD Field Office IV-A Alabang-Zapote Rd., Alabang, Muntinlupa City
  • Contact no.: 807-7102
  • Email at: fo4a@dswd.gov.ph
  • Like their facebook page: DSWD Region IV-A
  • Twitter: @dswdservesfo4a

After our visit to Mauban, we headed to Majayjay, Laguna for a stop-over and a refreshing break. We stopped over to Angelina’s Garden Bed and Breakfast. Our team decided to try and trekk Bukay Falls — Soon on my next blog..

Bye for now, and see you on my next adventure!

So what happened to my adventure at Bukay Falls? Wanna know?

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DSWD Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) at SLP Learning Visit – Ikot sa CALABARZON- – Part 2

November 16, 2018 – 2nd day of our Learning Visit, and I was excited as I am just like the 1st day. We had a delicious breakfast at the Pagsanjan Falls Laguna Lodge, where we stayed after visiting Paete, Laguna. We had fried bangus, egg and friend rice perfectly partnered with coffee while overlooking the quiet river leading the way to Pagsanjan Falls. This day was filled with curiosity, as we will explore different communities and places.

Our first drop was at the town of Luisiana, Laguna where we visited the Lala Ladies and their products, another beneficiary of the SLP (Sustainable Livelihood Program). 

LALA LADIES SUSTAINABLE LIVELIHOOD PROGRAM ASSOCIATION

Since their organization in 2016, the Lala Ladies has been producing various pandan woven handicrafts such as bags, purses, storage boxes and cushions that come in various sizes and colors. Through the efforts of the SLPA and their local government, these handicrafts were showcased in different trade fairs in and outside CALABARZON region. 

The moment I stepped into their handicraft store, I was in HEAVEN! Gosh, I love native bags! And it was awesome that these native bags were all made from Pandan leaves. Imagine how zero-waste it is, if in case it was already damaged or you no longer need it, it is completely biodegradable. As you well know, that I am also an advocate of the “Zero-waste/minimalist lifestyle” so seeing with my own eyes how these things were made, were just awesome!

I met Ate Venus R. Banta, the President of the Lala Ladies Sustainable Livelihood Program Association. She said they started on September 30, 2016 and they are all 4Ps beneficiaries. All of these 4Ps parents were gathered and formed a group of 20, and they are also makers of Pandan Handicrafts. They were given by DSWD a grant of P200,000 (P10,000/each), and another P100,000 for the Association and 2 machines (like the presser) as their working capital. 

Through the help of the trainings from SLP  they managed to grow their livelihood business. DSWD assisted them with business registration, BIR Filing and linked them with DTI for Trades and Exhibit Fairs. Each of the members also help in the promotion of the groups’ products, and aims to target the orders in time. They were able to earn at least P2,500/week and it helped a lot to augment their household income. The ladies were also proud to be featured in different tv shows, and proud that their products are being showcased in different trade fairs and bazaars. I am so impressed with their Association as it shows true cooperation among their members and they are all talented; the help the DSWD extended to their group is really a BIG HELP to those who are lacking in capital. This also help preserve their tradition and indigenous knowledge through teaching new members the skills needed to do these pandan handicrafts. 

Materials: Pandan leaves (most of these were harvested in their local store or in their own backyards)

Process:

  • Pananagpas – the cutting of Pandan leaves from its tree
  • Pag-hihininik – the process of removing of thorns in both sides of the leaves and removal of hard and excess part of the leaves
  • Pag-lilinas – cleaning of the leaves using an instrument “agpang” and cutting it into its correct size (thick and thin measure accdg. to the product that is being made 
  • Pag-iilo – the process of thinning using a presser machine
  • Pag-lalala – finally, the process of weaving 
Paglilinas
Paglilinas

I tried weaving a basket, the leaves should be placed in an alternate manner, it was easy but you have to pull the leaves tight (and this was the hard part for me haha!). Oh, leave it to the expert weavers. 

Pag-lalala or Weaving

Finished Products:

Almost anything can be made out of pandan leaves like bags, baskets, trays, placemats, coin purses, laundry boxes, storage box, clothes for fashion events, and many more!

Instantly, I remembered that I need to buy a souvenir or like a door prize for our Thanksgiving Party in our Cooperative so instead of buying to big malls or groceries, our team (via group chat) agreed to buy egg baskets from Lala Ladies, and another member also asked me to buy for her, so I bought 60 pcs of egg baskets, 1 egg basket for me, 1 bigger bag, and 3 coin purses. The Lala Ladies were all happy, smiles lifted, and thanked me for they said “an early Christmas gift.” But on the other hand, I should be the one thankful for finding these goodies, an instant  checked off my list of things to do for the party. And these woven materials are a good way to start a livelihood business, just add a little creativity and this finished product can go a long way. 

Brgy. San Jose, Luisiana, Laguna

Lala Ladies SLPA

  • 20 MEMBERS
  • P200,000 capital assistance

To know more about the Lala Ladies, you may visit their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/slpluisiana/

Beside the Lala Ladies Handicraft store is the Tahisiana Enterprises SLPA, but I was not able to interview their members, so I just took some photos of their production area.

Tahisiana Enterprises SLPA

While the Lala Ladies is focused into weaving, the Tahisiana Enterprises focuses on dressmaking. They are located just beside the Lala Ladies handicraft production and store area. 

You may check out more of Tahisiana Enterprises on their facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Tahisiana-Enterprises-180952082585468/

After Luisiana, we headed to Lucban, Quezon and had a short visit to Kamay Ni Hesus. Check out my blog Short Visit to Kamay Ni Hesus. From there, we checked in to Patio Rizal Hotel, the Hotel was located just in front of the Lucban Municipality, and perfectly situated beside the town plaza. See full review of this hotel on this link Patio Rizal Hotel and Restaurant.

Our next drop is at the Lucban Farmers and Traders Sustainable Livelihood Program Association.

One of the main sources of income in the Quezon Province is farming. Traders and farmers often struggle and borrow money from loan sharks. This problem led to the formation of the Lucban Farmers and Traders SLPA (LFTS). 

The Lucban Farmers Trading Post is a project of the local government unit of Lucban, the goal of this Trading post is to create a venue for farmers in and out of Lucban to have a common ground for trading. Most of the traders that were given SLP assistance do trading in Divisoria. 

I got the chance to interview Mrs. Maribel Ho, one of the seller/trader and member of the LFTS. She narrated that joining the Association last 2 years when it was started was by force. There were resistance on the side of the traders on why they were being re-located in the Lucban Farmers Trading Post. They had confusion since they were quietly just doing business on their own homes then suddenly being asked to be stationed out of of the main town, and were “forced” to do trading here in the post. The first year was a struggle according to her, since the post have no potential clients yet, and they have to pay back the grant weekly. The group had a “mis-understanding” of how the grant works. But eventually, after 2 years now, the Association and the Post started to grow, there was an increase in commercialism in the area, and they were able to bring own produce (harvest) to Manila and vice versa. The traders only stay up to 2pm (those with deliveries), and then head to Divisoria while the remaining products were on display and for sale at the stalls that they are paying for P30/day. Mrs. Ho said today, after 2 years, she can say that the Lucban Farmers Trading Post and SLPA is a big help for them and increased their income. They earn as much as P800 – P1000 per day. Some of their members were also 4Ps beneficiaries. 

Here’s Mrs. Ho with her warm smile after our small chat, she was glad to share her story and was a little bit shy when we took a selfie. 

Next, I got to talk with was Mr. Bionic, he is the Vice President of the Lucban Farmers and Traders SLPA. He is a farmer and also a trader. He said he just rents the land, hires the farmers who grow crops and other vegetables in season. After 2 months, the biggest income potential ranges from P30,000 and up. Whew! that’s a good income! But sometimes, crops died during stormy weathers, or if caught with pests, or disease. Mr. Bionic, gave us bags of sayote and sweet potato (camote) which we divided among our team so all of us got to taste Lucban vegetable produce. 

Of course, I bought some vegetables from Mrs. Ho’s stall – cabbage, baguio beans, eggplant, carrots, bell pepper, lettuce, and onions. I thought it was cheaper than in Tagaytay, but they say they also get these types of vegetables from either Baguio or Tagaytay. Their local produce are sayote and camote. A kilo of sayote costs only P17/kg, in Manila it costs P35-40/kg. 

Our last community visit was at the Calumpang Sustainable Livelihood Association in Tiaong, Quezon. 

Calumpang SLPA is composed of 100 members, they received a grant of P1,020,000 from DSWD. All members of Calumpang SLPA were also recipients of the Pantawid Pamilya Pilipino Program (4Ps). Out of this amount, they were able to build a Community Store, a Party Needs Store and a Water Refilling Station. The income were recorded on a daily basis, and are shared to the 100 members as a dividend. The Calumpang SLPA are also on its way to register as a Cooperative (the next level target of SLPA), in order for them to be more independent and do more with their capital. The business registration, BIR requirements, bank withdrawals were all being monitored by DSWD, they were mentored so they can run the business well and not put their capital into waste. Withdrawal of money cannot be done without the supervision of DSWD. All members should be informed of the in and out of the financial status of their Association. 

Water Refilling Station
Party Needs Store
Community Store

After Tiaong, we headed back to our hotel at Patio Rizal and it was still early so we had more time and explored Lucban.  See more of my Lucban adventures here —

I have yet one more day of the DSWD Learning Visit, I can’t wait to share it with you. 

Click the FOLLOW button and watch out for more stories. 

Lots of love,

The Transport Queen

Short Visit to Lucban, Quezon – Kamay Ni Hesus Shrine

Just a few hours drive from Luisiana and Pagsanjan, Laguna is the quaint town of Lucban. I have known Lucban for its Pahimis Festival, but I haven’t really get down and see Lucban, not until I joined the DSWD Learning Visit. 

We visited Lucban to see the Lucban Farmers and Traders SLPA, but before that, our generous DSWD ROI Sir Joseph, allowed  us to visit one of the main attractions in Lucban which is the Kamay Ni Hesus. 

LUCBAN QUEZON

Kamay Ni Hesus in Lucban is a pilgrimage site, I was glad to come here without the overwhelming crowd. It is considered a sacred ground for everyone who wants to repent, give thanks and pray for healing. The Kamay Ni Hesus Healing Church is a 5-hectare shrine constructed on February 2002 and located at Brgy. Tinamnan, Lucban,  Quezon. I only happened to see the Healing Church, Noah’s Ark, Garden of Eden, Holy Family Park and the colorful stalls of souvenir items in the area.

You will be welcomed with REMINDERS before you start your climb, and an image of the Blessed Mother Mary.

KAMAY NI HESUS
KAMAY NI HESUS

Going up to the top of Kamay Ni Hesus is not easy, it will challenge you and rip you out of energy. So better check if your fit enough to climb 300+ stairs. Good thing, they have handrails and corners where you can hold and stop, breathe and collect yourself.

KAMAY NI HESUS

The journey going up also enable you to see Lucban in full view, each level will show you a different picturesque view of Lucban. 

On the way up, are images of the Stations of the Cross.

KAMAY NI HESUS
KAMAY NI HESUS
KAMAY NI HESUS
KAMAY NI HESUS

Once you reach the top, seems like victory where you can pray “Thank you Lord!”. For me, I always pray and thank God for surviving to climb each level, ha! ha! ha! It wasn’t that easy going down back to the ground, and I even had my rubber shoes damaged as I slipped my foot on some rock. I just thought of it as some kind of a remembrance of my adventure.

KAMAY NI HESUS

We spent just an hour of tour here, and I admit I didn’t get the chance to see all of what Kamay Ni Hesus have to offer, an hour is too short to explore the whole area. You can view other photos in my facebook page Diaries of a Transport Queen.

When we came back to the hotel in the afternoon, had a quick rest and explored the town again. Lucban town is a picture of old provincial town, establishments were still of those Spanish era designs, no modern building around the town Plaza. As if getting me to think, am I still looking at the same place a few centuries ago? It is that feeling of simplicity and peace.

A 7-11 Store in an old Spanish Style Building

We roamed around town and at last found “pancit habhab” and tried it for just P10.  At first, we do not know how to eat “habhab” style but managed to eat it anyway, without fork. To eat habhab means to eat with your mouth and eat the pancit straight from the banana leaves. OH, definitely a ZERO-WASTE lifestyle check! Why can’t all the pancit stores serve like these, hehe! I bought a kilo of fresh Lucban pancit for just P40.

PANCIT HABHAB

We stayed at Patio Rizal Hotel — check my review in the blog _—–

HOW TO GET TO KAMAY NI HESUS LUCBAN, QUEZON

Via Private Transport

  • Traverse SLEX and exit to Calamba, Laguna. You will pass by the towns of Los Banos,  Sta. Cruz, Pagsanjan, Cavinti and Luisiana

Via Public Transport

  • Check out the bus terminal at Cubao or Buendia Taft bound to Sta. Cruz, Laguna. At Sta. Cruz, take a jeepney ride going to Lucban. Then ride a tricycle going to Kamay Ni Hesus

I will definitely have the Pahimis Festival in my bucket list to complete my Lucban experience, I also wanted to explore more of Lucban and hoard their fried pancit snacks which Conan, my baby, instantly loved. Ooops, I also forgot to taste their best selling Lucban longganisa so I really have to come back for a day or two. 

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The Transport Queen

The Carving Capital of the Philippines – Paete, Laguna – A quick view

It was my first time to visit Paete, Laguna through the Ikot sa CALABARZON – DSWD Learning Visit 2018.

The town welcomed us with of course numerous artwork and carvings across the town. I can say – I fell inlove at first sight.

Paete is a 4th class municipality in the province of Laguna. The town, is located at the north-eastern part of Laguna, along the shores of picturesque Laguna de Bay. It was founded in 1580 by Spanish friars Juan de Plasencia and Diego de Oropesa of the Franciscan Order. It is believed that the earliest inhabitants were of Malay lineage, coming all the way from Borneo in their swift and sturdy boats called “Balangay”. Source Wikipedia

Paete got its name from the word “paet” which means chisel. We were welcomed in the Tourism Office of Paete and watched documentaries of the history of Paete Town. As I come to know this small municipality, I came and see first hand the artistry and skills of its residents. Their art ranges from painting, carving, paper mache, wooden sculpture and many more. Though the recent log ban affected their economy, the residents find their way to enter the modern niche of ice and food carving. Those who have names in the field of wood, ice and food sculpture (ex. is the watermelon carving) came from Paete Town.

Let me take you on a visual tour of the town and the artworks that fascinated me.

Entrance marker leading to the town’s City Hall

This is St. James The Apostle Parish Church or simply known as Paete Church. It was first built in 1646. Paete is also a pilgrimage site wherein you can buy various types of religious ‘pu on’ or images of saints.
PAETE CHURCH

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Spotted the biggest image of Mother Mary on display in one of the stores

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The detailed artwork of the town’s welcome arc
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Even the ref magnets were carved
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One of my favorites, wall display which is for sale for P2000

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Refrigerator magnet souvenirs for sale at 3 for P100

We haven’t visited the Tatlong Krus because of the bad weather. Upon learning that the Taka Ladies of Paete accepts donation of used books, magazines, newspaper etc. and the Municipality also accepts donations such as clothes, its a good timing that we in ROADRACTSC is looking for a tie-up organization to donate our collected clothes and books. I am also eager to return and see more of Paete — visit their hidden treasures and promote the place to other “byaheros”. 

Paete will take you back in time, their preserved culture and unique skills will leave one in awe!

Click FOLLOW and join me on my Day 2 adventure of the IKOT SA CALABARZON – DSWD Learning Visit 2018!

Love as always,

The Transport Queen

Ikot CALABARZON 2018 – A must joined event!

DSWD or the Department of Social Works & Welfare Development will have its 3-day Learning Visit Tour to CALABARZON this coming Nov. 15-17, 2018. It will cover the implementation of the following projects:

  • Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP)
  • Pantawid Pamilyang Program (4Ps)
  • Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS)
  • Unconditional Cash Transfer (UCT)

I have been an active supporter of DSWD’s call for volunteers. The first one was during the last typhoon Yolanda where I volunteered as one of the Psychological First Aid giver.

And the 2nd one was last July 29, 2017, wherein our Coop held a Coop Damayan to help in the repacking of rice to be distributed to the victims of the war at Marawi.

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ROADRACTSC Coop Damayan

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After a hard days’s work, still all smiles!

I wanted to join the Ikot Calabarzon 2018 because of the in-depth exposure and added experience I will gain from the Program. I wanted to learn all about the  implementation, convergence and impact of these 4 various DSWD Program.

In order to;

  • Gain exposure on how our Government is currently helping our Community
  • Learn how it will help our Cooperative members who belongs in the marginalized sector
  • Learn how our Cooperative can be a part in the implementation of these various Program via the Coop’s Community Development Program or thru the GAD (Gender and Dev’t Committee)
  • Expand my knowledge and will help in formulating more ways on how we can help different advocacies/communities

Will I be chosen as an official blogger of DSWD’s Ikot sa CALABARZON? Find out more by clicking FOLLOW on below button.

P.S. 

I’m excited!

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Endless Summer at The Cove Manila 🏝

Want to experience a never-ending Summer treat while not leaving Manila? Some still does not know that there’s a place at the heart of Manila where you can party, swim and experience summer all year.

Surprised? now you’re getting excited, read along and let me take you there!

We all know the biggest and grandest Hotel and Casino now resides in a place called Okada. And inside Okada lies the gigantic Cove Manila!

Cove Manila is Southeast Asia’s newest entertainment space with its indoor beach club and nightclub, boasting some of the most advanced audio, video and ambient lighting technologies that promise an unparalleled world-class experience.

Summer at Cove Manila

The Indoor Beach Club features an advanced climate control system that emulates a cool bay side atmosphere for a picture-perfect “summer experience” all year long. Guests can experience the venue’s luxury cabanas with five-star hotel amenities and a private hot tub—all while enjoying remarkable views of the Manila Bay and the vast 9000-sqm venue.

It is highly instagrammable so bring along your favorite OOTDs for a sure winning photo shoot moment!

Summer feel at Cove Manila

INDOOR BEACH CLUB ATTIRE

Guests are required to wear beachwear or summer casual attire. Baggy and overly athletic attire is strictly prohibited in the venue.

Towels will be provided for you, just ask for it at the concierge.

Proper pool attire: Swimsuits (i.e. Board shorts for men, bikinis/swimsuits for women)

Prohibited apparel in the pool: Full clothing is strictly prohibited when swimming in the pool. The venue does not permit Jeans or pants in the water, undergarments such as boxers, bras and panties, chains or baggy clothing, t-shirts and rash guards, overly athletic gear, clothing that contains rivets, hooks, or studs

Important: The Management reserves the right to deny entry to guests who do not comply with the dress code.

Meanwhile, the Nightclub is home to the country’s first six-ring kinetic chandelier capable of about 10,000 visual and kinetic effects that engulf the audience in a trance-like experience on the dance floor. This along with the Funktion-One Sound System by world-renowned sound engineer Tony Andrews takes the venue’s multi-sensory experience to new heights. All of this combined completes an eventful day-to-night party found nowhere else.

Night club party

DRESS CODE NIGHTCLUB ATTIRE

Guests are required to wear upscale fashion-forward club attire. The venue does not permit hats, sandals, slippers, baggy clothing, shorts, and overly athletic clothing. Collared shirts are required for men.

TABLES, UMBRELLA & CABANAS

Relaxation at Cove Manila

Prices of tables range from P1,500 to P15,000 depending on the event and table sizes.

Enjoy an exclusive cabana with your own swimming pool tub for an elusive price of P150K and up.

Cavana

Hacks: No budget for tables? There are spare sofas available at the area for your non-swimming companion. Or who needs a table anyway if you are roaming around having some photoshoot and basking in the warm pool. Store your things at the locker room for only P150 locker rental fee. The locker fits up to 2 medium size traveling bags.

Enjoy partying with your friends, colleagues and family, just remember you and your companions must be 18 years old and up. Bring your ID as a proof of your identity. Strictly: NO ID NO ENTRY

We happened to be here twice for What’s Good Sunday Brunch Pool Party, and visiting Cove Manila never fails to amaze me, specially seeing those happy smiles from my friends.

happy with friends

Regular performers are:

  • World of Wonders
  • Violin
  • Fire Dance
  • and of course to the beat of a DJ mix

FOOD & DRINKS

Brunch Specials:

  • BRUNCH PACKAGE – P2,999.00 + UNLIMITED FOOD & BEVERAGES from the Brunch Menu
  • BUBBLY PACKAGE – P3,999.00 + UNLIMITED FOOD & BEVERAGES from the Brunch Menu, including Bellinis and Sparkling Wine

Grab & Go – You may also order from Grab & Go and have a day of sushi for only P299/platter.

Or you can randomly order from the food & drinks available on their menu.

Ladies drinks however is available for free just get it at the pool side.

If you are ordering for a drink make sure you read the labels well, drinks (Wine and Liqours) range from P150 to 1.1M and higher. Wonder what’s the taste of a million priced vodka.

Before the party ends, my husband won at his favorite horse racing game at the Okada Casino. So, our group decided to have a late dinner at Kiapo after partying at the Cove Manila, which is located also inside Okada.

photogrid_1535387300843.jpg

The Transport Queen says 🔎

Over-all Rate:

🤗🤗🤗🤗

HOURS OF OPERATION

Sunday – 1:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Thursday – 10:00 pm to 3:00 am

Friday – 10:30 pm to 5:00 am

Saturday – 10:30 pm to 5:00 am

Other Details:

Ladies – Free entry

Gentleman – P500 + 1 free drink

📞Reach The Cove Manila at

Okada Manila, New Seaside Drive, Entertainment City, Parañaque City, 1701, Metro Manila, Philippines

Tel: +63 2 555 5757

covemanila@okadamanila.com

We had a great fun experience and will surely go back for more endless summer!

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