Panagbenga Festival or swimming in a beach resort? “Swimming!” Pao chose the latter eagerly. Our son is not a finicky lad, he doesn’t care if it’s black or white sand beach as long as we are all together in a family getaway, that would be it. And so for his 14th birthday we will go back at Villa Sulit in Baryo Hugom in Laiya, San Juan, Batangas. Cheap resort but with clear water and breathtaking view.
Fortunately, I found the contact number of the resort (c/o Sammy) from Virtual Tourist. As per inquiry, the big air-conditioned nipa hut is no longer available. What we had was a small nipa hut with sink, comfort room, one fan room and a balcony for P3,500 with inclusion of entrance fee. We were so glad because we were on a beachfront.
Seven years back, we were greeted by dirt and dust as we were heading the 4-km road leading to the resort. But now it is convenient to travelers because the road is well-paved. From Pasay City we reached our destination in less than four hours. Thanks to my hubby for his research of making our time trip a bit shorter than our first time here.
We passed by the new Casa Dolores Hotel as we were approaching the wide and spacious parking lot of Villa Sulit. The old wooden house which we occupied on September 2005 was no longer there but new nipa huts which I guess five in all were visible in the area. Indeed Villa Sulit had improved so much. That’s good!
Sammy assisted us immediately when we reached the resort. We began preparing for our lunch. My hubby grilled hotdogs and pork liempo. Pao, Shen, Ghie, Miko, Pol, Rion and Noel dashed into the water. At lunch time, delicious meals were served on the table. Can’t resist not to eat more than a cup of rice, whew!
After an hour, it was too inviting to sleep because of the refreshing wind coming from the sea. And so we doze off, Mama on the lead. Others went back in the water. By afternoon, I was so excited as we headed to the most beautiful spot near La Luz Resort which I call, the Big Rock. This is the first reason why I love to go back here.
As we were walking on the shoreline, I was surprised to see resorts sprouted like mushrooms, lots of boats docked near the shore and lots of bathers on the water. Gone is the serene atmosphere of Baryo Hugom seven years ago. It was a noisy crowd now. I felt so sad seeing these changes.
But on the other hand this is good for local tourism. A good sign that Baryo Hugom is now becoming a popular beach destination.
As we stepped atop the big rock, I felt I was on top of the world, venturing God’s wonderful creations. The view was still amazingly perfect, from the clear blue sky, down to the craggy rocks and to the limitless blue water below. I appreciated it more for our second step here. Going down, we discovered that there was another beautiful rock formation at the back of this huge rock. Awesome!
When we went back to Villa Sulit, all of them immersed on the water while I proceeded to Casa Dolores to see the rooms. The manager allowed me to see the available rooms which were actually nice but the rate is quite above average. Satisfied with my ocular inspection, I went back to our nipa hut to prepare for dinner.
Dinner came. As usual, everyone’s tummy were full. So full that we stayed a while on the balcony and played Pinoy Genyo using my hubby’s galaxy tab. We didn’t swim anymore. After our kulitan, we explored along the long stretch to enjoy the night-time solitude. There was a fire lantern activity (P300) in one of the resorts and we enjoyed watching those beautiful fire lanterns swaying gently up in the sky.
My hubby slept alone inside the tent. The kids lie down in bed inside the room with my sister and Noel. I joined the teens and momsie sleeping on the balcony, it was so cool here and safe. Time now for bed!
I awoke to the sound of my alarm clock at 5 am. I got up so excited holding my cam to capture my favorite sunrise photo. My hubby was still sleeping so I headed to the shore alone. I was surprised seeing lots of people sprawling on the sand, others were busy chatting with each other and others were holding cameras too. Noel was walking on the shore, savoring the moment with nature. I was late.
I felt so nostalgic as I remember my sunrise photo activity here in 2005. I was sitting here, alone in the sand, same place, same time with so much serenity and tranquility. But now, noise of people talking and laughing engulfed the atmosphere. There’s no serenity anymore.
And there came the sun gracefully rising up to the sky. It was so beautiful as its rays spilled slowly to the calm water. This is where I felt the gentler world of the sea. The sensation was so thrilling and wonderful. The amazing sunrise in the beachfront is the second best thing I love here in Baryo Hugom.
It was so delightful eating together in a breakfast. The balcony was filled by our noise, laughter, conversation, sipping coffees and planning ahead for the next escapade. As all breads were eaten, off we went to the Big Rock to enjoy watching the breath-taking view. And of course, time for photo shooting again. Hahaha!
Next activity, swimming on the beach. The water is still the same, it was crystal clear and safe to swim. We can open our eyes while swimming underwater. I should be thankful because the cleanliness of the water was maintained. Of all the beaches in Batangas that we’ve been, San Juan had the most clearest and cleanest water. And this is the third and last beautiful thing i love here in Baryo Hugom.
We ate our lunch late because of non-stop swimming activity. We extended our stay until 1 pm. Sammy’s mother didn’t charge us anymore for our one hour extension. She thanked us and invited us to come back.
As long as there is the big rock, surely, we will go back, albeit the crowd and noise. Pao had enjoyed again his water adventure birthday.
Where would be our next destination Pao?
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