It was in May 2006 when I took my first memorable airplane ride bound for Albay, my humble hometown. There was a tinge of fear when the plane took off but then excitement ruled the day. When the captain announced the landing I was mesmerized glimpsing the majestic Mayon Volcano and when I stooped down, I saw mass of mounds that resembled Bohol’s Chocolate Hills. An overwhelming curiosity had taken hold of me. This is a unique natural wonder but why it hasn’t been discovered yet so it will be added to Albay’s roster of famous tourist attractions.
Came the year 2015, I was startled when I saw pictures of Quitinday Green Hills on the Facebook page of Governor Joey Salceda proudly promoting it. I made a quick Google search and soon discovered that these hills were the same mounds on the ground I saw aboard the airplane in May 2006. I can’t sustain my happiness and excitement because nine years after, my wish had been granted. It is now one of Albay’s emerging tourist attractions.
Such a wonderful and amazing find.
Quitinday Green Hills is located in Barangay Quitinday in Camalig. It is dubbed as “Pili Nuts Hills” because of its pointed tops, an amazing geological formation that looked like the famous Chocolate Hills of Bohol. But there are two things that differed one from the other. First, Quitinday Green Hills has three summits that could be trekked by visitors unlike in Chocolate Hills; this famed tourist spot is for viewing only from the view deck. And second, these hills are in lush green all year round, hence the name green hills.
Summer of 2017
On top of our places to visit this summer is the Quitinday Green Hills. Unfortunately, my daughter Shen caught measles so we spent our first day in a doctor for her wellness. In our second day, we had her divine approval. Together with my hubby, son and my two nephews, we set off to Camalig to trek the Quitinday Green Hills. We felt somewhat guilty leaving her in our house with her lola. But she needs rest for a fast recovery so she can enjoy the remaining days in swimming escapade which she truly loves.
We were familiar driving in the town of Camalig because of our frequent visits to Hoyop Hoyopan Cave. It was quite an adventure in getting to Barangay Quitinday. There were portions of the road that were paved; some were rough, narrow and bumpy. There were hilly too but not so steep.
It was quite a long drive but thanks to the scenic pastoral environment that made our journey relaxing. Trees abounded but houses were sparse. If you are not used to this place, you might get scared. But let excitement rule above fear. I knew then, this long trip will lead us to a wonderful adventure with nature.
When we reached the jump-off point, we logged our names to the registration area. We paid Php20.00 per head for the entrance fee and Php30.00 for the parking fee. We were briefed by Ms. Elena for few minutes before we descend.
We hired a trek guide to help local tourism. Ryan, a twelve-year-old boy led us to the three summits.
The Exciting Trek
From the jump-off point, we reached the first summit in less than ten minutes. The trail was easy and so friendly that even non-climbers, kids and elders will surely love to climb the hill. The view up there was spectacular and so amazing.
I was so grateful to God for creating wonders like this. It was a refreshing sight. Every angle, every hill is worthy for picture taking.
The nipa hut served as resting place and shield from the scorching heat of the sun. Visitors flocked inside the hut. After few minutes of picture taking, we proceeded to the second summit and reached the top in less than ten minutes. The established trail was composed of soil stairs and erected wooden handle as support.
It was so hot by then but we did not mind the heat. I was approached by a guy when he saw my shirt (I survived Mt Pulag). He told me he was also a casual trekker like me who had been to Mt. Pulag last March. I was so glad to meet him who was so busy capturing memories with his father.
Amid the summer heat, we managed to make the most of our time with our picture taking. We descended and went back to the nipa hut with more visitors inside and outside. We took some rest, quenched our thirst with a bottle of water and off we ascend the last destination.
Approaching the last summit, Ryan pointed to us a sinkhole. Unfortunately, I did not have a snapshot of it. We proceeded and were amazed to see the majestic view of the perfect cone of Mayon Volcano. And because this was the last summit, we savored the view peacefully. The experience was so great standing there admiring every wonderful creation our eyes perceived.
We were perspiring much when we went back to the nipa hut. We had our last photo ops and went back to the jump-off point.
There were sari-sari stores near the registration area and restrooms for bio breaks.
Best Time to Visit
We regretted coming late. If we arrive early like our initial plan, we will not be bothered by the blazing sun and we will have much time on every summit. Anyway, we will go back here on our next vacation before the sun spills its rays into the horizon.
The best time to visit Qutinday Green Hills is early morning or late in the afternoon. The grassland has no tree to shade you so expect that you will be exposed to sunlight. Wear comfortable clothes, apply sunscreen and bring enough water to hydrate you.
In getting there:
From Legazpi City, ride a jeep with a signage “Camalig” or “Polangui” then alight at Camalig Market (Php20.00). From there, ride a tricycle and tell the driver to drop you to the jump-off-point (Php500.00 back and forth).
Open time: 5:30 am to 5:30 pm
- The Stillness of Sumlang Lake in Camalig, Albay
- The Art of Pottery in Tiwi, Albay
- The Hoyop Hoyopan Cave in Camalig, Albay: Amused and Chilled
- Mayon Skyline View Deck: Summer Escapade 2014
- IshiAya’s Garden Bistro in Tabaco City, Albay
You may also like:
|Part 4: Hong Kong and Macau Trip: The Venetian Macau and Galaxy Macau||Loreland Farm Resort: Changed and Evolved||The Exciting Masungi Georeserve Trek||Singapore Family Trip-Part 9: Child delight in Singapore Zoo|