Bataan Heartland

Bataan Heartland

 

Native Ifugao House

Bahay Kubo

Vigan House:

Infinity River Water Pool:

Cave House:

Aquarium:

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Explore Coron, Palawan

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Places to go to in Coron, Palawan:

Lakes and lagoons on Coron Island (both buffeted by towering limestone formations), perfect for snorkeling:

1) Lake Kayangan – asia’s cleanest and clearest lake, see as far deep as 15 to 20 feet

2) Lake Barracuda – fresh water on the surface and warm saltwater (35 to 40 degrees Celsius) at depths of 9 m or more, unique marine life and breathtaking limestone formations underwater

3) Twin lagoons – water can be both clear and slightly brackish depending on the temperature (water has 2 temperatures); very picturesque

4) Banol beach – small strip of fine white sand sitting at the foot of a towering limestone cliff, very nice and private

Island hopping along the Calamianes group (arguably the best beaches in the Philippines, Boracay and Amanpulo included):

5) Banana Island – lonely island with small coral reefs around it that show abundant marine life; fine white sand and rustic accommodations

6) Malcapuya Island – fine white sand with a longer shoreline than Banana Island; rustic accomodations

7) Calumbuyan Island, Malcatop Island, North and South Cay, Debutonay Island, Black Island (Gutob Bay) – another must-see for beach lovers; fine white sand and fantastic coral reefs (marine sanctuaries)

Dive sites abound (possibly the Philippines’ most varied and technical SCUBA diving location):

8 ) Wreck diving – many wrecks from World War 2 litter the archipelago (Akitsushima, Irako, Kogyo Maru, Olympia Maru, Morazon Maru and several more); depths range from 9m to 45 m

9) Cathedral Cave – steep drop off to 30m, cave on 7m; about 20m long tunnel with large underwater cave where you can surface

10) Dynamite Reef – a marine sanctuary off tangat (also sangat) island with corals, fish, anemones, and tunicates

11) CYC Beach –  I believe this stands for Coron Youth Club. It is the only public beach (and free!) in the vicinity. It was a good place to stay into.

12) Siete Pecados – Siete Pecados is a good place to snorkle & swim with the multi-colored fish of different sizes and shapes. This is a marine park, and it is protected. Unfortunately, some of the corals have been destroyed.

Inland tourist spots:

13) Maquinit hot springs – enjoy therapeutic 40 degree Celsius saltwater hot springs

14) Mount Tapyas – enjoy a breath-taking view of the entire island and enjoy the unique sunset

15) Mount Tundalara – 640 m high, you can reach the peak in 3 to 4 hours; the second highest peak in Palawan

16) Calauit nature reserve – see zebras, giraffes, mousedeer and other animals roam freely in this safari-like environment

15) Horse valley – riders of all skill levels can enjoy the many horses located in this ranch located 2.5 km from Coron town

Please let me know if I missed anything.

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MT. BATULAO

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MT. BATULAO
Nasugbu, Batangas
Jump-off point: Evercrest Golf Course, Nasugbu
LLA: 14.0408 N 120.8011 E 811 MASL
Days required / Hours to summit: 1 day / 2-4 hours
Specs: Minor climb, Difficulty 4/9, Trail class 3 with 60-70 degrees assault

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BACKGROUND
The cool and arid clime of Mt. Batulao is a pleasant escape from the tropics. The moment you alight from the Crow bus at Evercrest Golf Course – the jumpoff – you will feel the same coolness felt by the visitors of Tagaytay. And this temperature will be with you all the way. Batulao is the only mountain in the region where you can wear jackets at high noon. You have to. There is no tree cover throughout the climb. On sunny days, this paradoxical blending of heat and cold, on dramatic, sometimes steep landscapes, with forceful winds that make the cogon grass dance, forming beautiful waveforms across the slopes, earns for Batulao the distinction of being the most spectacular of the mountains in Batangas.

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Even its name draws from a spectacular origin. Every yearend, the sun sets right between Batulao’s two peaks, creating an image of rocks surrounding a disc of red light. In Tagalog, this phenomenon of “Bato sa Ilao” (Illuminated Rocks) became abbreviated to “Batulao”. Although this happens only in the last week of December, Batulao’s charms throughout the year are more than enough to make it among the favored mountaineering destinations. Access to the mountain is easy; just take the Nasugbu-bound buses from EDSA cor. Taft.

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The trails are initially rough roads, then transition to paths that are well-maintained, taking you up and down, up and down, at first gently, and then the slopes will be more pronounced later. After around forty minutes of trekking, you will encounter a hut, fondly called ‘Mini Stop’ where buco juice is sold for P20 each. 500 meters beyond this hut is the fork between the two trails to Mt. Batulao’s summit.

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SPECIAL CONCERNS
During the cool months of December-February, jackets or long-sleeved shirts have a dual purpose in Batulao: they protect you from the chilly morning temperature, and shield you from the sun’s UV rays. Avoid garments that easily stain with dust, for Batulao is arid. During the rainy season, however, Batulao also gets humid, so wear clothes according to your comfort. Also, during rainy days, the portions of the trails could be severely muddy — preparing accordingly. In all seasons, however, long-sleeved clothing is still advised.

For the old trail, some would advice wearing gloves during the final ascent to Batulao’s peak, but it would depend on the hiker’s grip and convenience. For the new trail, gloves are not needed nor recommended.

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Boy guides, aged 8-17, wait for mountaineers by the highway; you can secure their services for a range of prices but PinoyMountaineer.com recommends P300/day. Don’t worry much about the ‘child labor’ aspect as these kids are able to go to school on weekdays; they do the guiding on weekends as their part-time job.

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You can save time by taking a tricycle from the highway to the end of the road – about a 20-minute trip that costs P100/tricycle ride. You can also get their cellphone number to fetch you on your way back. At the small village that you will pass by foot or trike, you can buy food and water. A local ice cream is also sold.

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At Camp 1, P20 fee is collected; a similar fee is collected at the New Trail campsite. Take note: If you want to two different trails up and down, you must pay P20 on both sides.

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There are no immediately accessible water sources throughout the Batulao trail but guides can access further sources, 30 minutes away for you on either trails. For dayhikes, 1.5-2 L water is advised. Cellphone signal is present throughout the climb.

(Thanks for this Article Gideon Lasco)

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Mount Samat

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Mount Samat is a mountain in the Town of Pilar, Province of Bataan, Republic of the Philippines that is the site of the Dambana ng Kagitingan or “Shrine of Valor”.

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Along with the island fortress of Corregidor, Mount Samat was the site of the most vicious battle against the Japanese Imperial Army in 1942 during the Battle of Bataan.

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Suffering heavy losses against the Japanese all over Luzon, Filipino and American soldiers retreated to Bataan Peninsula to regroup for a last valiant but futile stand. This retreat to Bataan is part of a United States strategy known as War Plan Orange.

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After fierce battle lasting 3 days, 78,000 exhausted, sick and starving men under Major General Edward P. King surrendered to the Japanese on April 9, 1942. It was, and still is, the single largest surrender of U.S. and Philippine Forces ever. These forces were then led on the Bataan Death March.

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The mountain is now a war memorial. A huge white cross stands as a mute but eloquent reminder of the men who died there. The Memorial Cross is a towering structure made of concrete, steel and marble. It is 92 meters high and the arms’ length is 15 meter on each side. It is 555 meters above sea level. An elevator goes up to the arms of the cross where the viewing galleries are found. The exterior finish of the cross at the base up to an 11-meter level is capped with “Nabiag Nga Bato” sculptural bas relief’s depicting significant battles and historical events. It also acts as a tourist attraction with a war museum nearby that has a wide array of displays from paintings of the Philippine heroes to armaments used by the American, Filipino and Japanese forces during the heat of the battle.

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Mt. Gulugod Baboy

Jump-off point: Philpan Dive Resort, Anilao, Mabini
LLA: 13°42’55″N; 120°53’43″E; 525 MASL
Specs: Minor climb, Difficulty 2/9, Trail class 1-2

Gulugod-Baboy is the general term that describes the hills that traverse Calumpan Peninsula. Located in Southern Batangas, the peninsula is more known for the diving resorts of Anilao – the birthplace of Philippine scuba diving. Since dive enthusiasts are also enthusiasts for anything ‘outdoor’, they began exploring the hills, and soon, Gulugod Baboy became a hiking destination on its right, although today it remains a popular sidetrip to a diving escapade to Anilao, or to the nearby Sombrero or Maricaban islands.
There is confusion regarding where the real “Gulugod-Baboy” is. From SE to NW (from Brgy. San Teodoro to Brgy. Laurel), there are three peaks in the range. The first is 470 MASL, the second is 485 MASL, and the third is 525 MASL. This third has a large, ancient tree as its landmark, and is known to mountaineers as the real Gulugod Baboy. However, locals say that this third peak is actually Mt. Pinagbanderahan, and the first peak is the Gulugod Baboy.
Gulugod-Baboy is a playground for adventure: you can refer to the map and ascend/descend to any point in the peninsula using the compass. Most directions have trails; indeed there are many trails in the mountain which is both an advantage and a disadvantage. At its peaks, you can see, from east to west: Janao Bay, Maricaban strait which bears Sombrero and Maricaban islands, a distant, faint blue Mindoro, Verde Island (SW) and Batangas Bay. The city and port of Batangas is visible on the west, following a farther Mt. Daguldul. To the north is Mt. Maculot, and even Mt. Batulao and the Tagaytay highlands.

TRIVIA

Gulugod-Baboy means “pig’s spine”, so named because of the contours of the hills. “Gulod”, however, means hill; “pig’s hill” can also depict the pastoral scene of the mountain. You would normal encounter cows, goats, and in the past, pigs, as you trek through the mountain.
For its part, Pinagbanderahan has a historical background. It can be translated, “Where the flag was hoisted”, and it commemorates the crash landing of the Japanese in early 1942. In the heat of World War II, Japanese airmen had a mishap and crash landed in the slopes of Gulugod-Baboy. To celebrate their survival, they planted a flag in the summit. Since then, locals called it “Pinagbanderahan”.

(Thanks for this Article Gideon Lasco)

SPECIAL CONCERNS
As you trek through Gulugod-Baboy you will be passing by private property; make sure you observe proper courtesy. Also, there are dogs on the loose and cows in some parts so be careful.

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Explore Mt. Pinatubo

Travel Dates:

February 21/ April 18/ May 23/ June 20

Rates:

P1,900 per person(local rate)
P2,500 per person(foreigners rate)
Available slots: 24 persons/ per date

Deadline of confirmation:

February 21- February 13 ( Friday)
April 18- April 10 (Friday)
May 23- May 15 (Friday)
June 20- June 12 (Friday)

Package inclusions:

Roundtrip aircon transfers from Metro Manila
4×4 vehicle and driver
All permits and fees
Local mountain guide
Use of life vests
Skyway/shortcut fee
Toll fees and gas
Travel coordinator

Meeting time and place:
1) 5:15AM Makati- KFC, Caltex Station at the corner of Buendia and Pasong Tamo
2) 5:45AM Quezon City- Mcdonalds, Quezon Avenue cor EDSA

Itinerary
Time Activity
6:00 AM   departure for Tarlac
7:30 AM  breakfast at Capas Town Proper; Jollibee
8:00 AM  depart for barangay hall
8:45 AM arrive at barangay hall
9:00 AM depart for Mt. Pinatubo via 4×4 vehicle
10:00 AM arrive at jump-off point for Mt. Pinatubo via skyway, start trek
11:15AM arrive at Mt. Pinatubo; lunch; swim in crater
1:30 PM start trek down
3:45 PM arrive at jump-off point for Mt. Pinatubo, depart for barangay hall
4:45 PM arrive at barangay hall, depart for Makati
7:00 PM arrive at Makati

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