Minor Climb No. 5: The Grotto, Mt Maculot and The Rockies

One of the favorite and famous hiking destinations near Metro Manila is Mt. Maculot situated at the heart of Cuenca in Batangas. It has three focal destinations: the Grotto (510 MASL), the Rockies (706 MASL) and the Summit (930 MASL). For the venturesome trekkers, they chose the traverse trail which will start at Rockies to Summit and ends at Grotto (4/9 difficulty)Some choose the Rockies only (3/9 difficulty).

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standing at the other side of the Rockies where the “buwis-buhay” shot was being done

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IshiAya’s Garden Bistro in Tabaco City, Albay

Visiting my humble home town Albay this summer of 2017 is not all about exploring new places but we will indulge in fine cuisine. For our fourth night, we want to satisfy our cravings for ramen. After visiting Sumlang Lake and Lignon Hills, we set off to Ishi Aya’s Garden Bistro in Tabaco City, a Japanese-Filipino infused restaurant owned by former sexy actress turned entrepreneur Aya Medel. It serves Japanese food and local favorites.

with Aya Medel, now a chef and hands-on manager and owner of IshiAya's Garden Bistro

with Aya Medel, now a chef and hands-on manager and owner of IshiAya’s Garden Bistro

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The Stillness of Sumlang Lake in Camalig, Albay

As what was planned this summer of 2017, we will explore new places in our home town in Albay. I was excited that on our fourth day we will visit the newest attraction, the Sumlang Lake in Camalig with Lignon Hills in Legazpi City as our final leg.

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The Friendly Trek to Quitinday Green Hills in Camalig, Albay

It was in May 2006 when I took my first memorable airplane ride bound for Albay, my humble hometown. When the pilot announced the landing, I was so thrilled glimpsing the majestic Mayon Volcano, the fleeting clouds, and the clear blue sky. When I stoop down, these mass of mounds caught much my attention because it looked like Bohol’s Chocolate Hills. I got so curious, why on earth this natural wonder hasn’t been discovered yet? I weaved a sigh wishing that this may be added soon to Albay’s roster of famous tourist attractions.

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the view from the second summit, the hills and Mayon Volcano

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Side trip to Pililla Wind Farm in Rizal

Everyone was so eager glimpsing the gigantic wind turbines as we were approaching the Pililla Wind Farm. There were many vehicles occupying the ample parking lot when we arrived. We hastily hopped out from the van and passed several stores selling souvenir goodies, food and refreshments. There were many visitors taking photos with the wind turbines as their backdrop. By looking at them, I was sure of one thing, Pililla Wind Farm is now a prime tourist spot.

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