Coming from a wonderful visit to Bais City and the Manjuyod White Sandbar, we now set off to Sipalay City, “the Jewel of the Sugar Island”. Home to numerous dive sites, pristine beaches, shipwrecks, and islets that resembled the Hundred Islands of Pangasinan, Sipalay City is definitely an emerging tourist destination and is another priceless gem in the province.
One of the favorites 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 choose the traverse trail which will start at the Rockies to Summit and ends at Grotto (4/9 difficulty). Some choose the Rockies only (3/9 difficulty).
After summiting Mt. Pulag, my very first memorable major climb in 2016, here comes another exciting adventure as 2017 came in. Together with my office mates Janice, Rodett, Cyrhine, Lenie, and Pauline, we will embark on a thrilling and easy climb to Mt. Talamitam which is said to be the younger sister of Mt. Batulao as both have the same terrain. This is located in Nasugbu, Batangas with a height of 615 meters above sea level.
Aside from Mt. Pulag’s famous sea of clouds, its uniqueness is its different vegetation in different elevations. Not only that, but it is also home to unique species of flora and fauna and is the natural habitat of the endemic dwarf bamboos and edelweiss that feast to the eyes when trekking the 500 hectares grassland. Sounds exciting right?
Mt. Gulugod Baboy in Anilao, Mabini, Batangas is frequently recommended for neophyte climbers. It is an easy climb with a picturesque view of Janao Bay, Batangas Bay, Balayan Bay, Tingloy Island, and Sombrero Island. With its minor difficulty of 2/9, this mountain which stands at 525 meters above sea level is one of the favorite destinations of mountaineers.
At my age (yes, I’m 43!), a certified mom and definitely not a mountaineer, was a bit hesitant to join the Mt. Pinatubo challenge headed by my office mate Phil. But I’ve been waiting for this adventure for quite some time and I’m not getting any younger. With the encouragement of these two sporty girls, Joyce and Janice, I whisked off all the negative thoughts in my mind, took a one-week regular body workout, and braved this exciting getaway with my colleagues.
We were rejuvenated after an hour of rest from roaming around and buying souvenirs and food in Coron town. The sea view from the window of Birang Guest House to where we will stay for four days was so delightfully refreshing. By 4:00 pm, we were fetched by our tricycle service referred by Ate Viring, the owner of the guest house. This is our first day in our dream destination and our initial activities are: to climb the iconic Mt. Tapyas and to swim in Maquinit Hot Spring.