Itbog Twin Falls (Camarines Sur, PH)

“A very wise quote is a spectacular waterfall. When you see it, you feel its power!” – Mehmet Murat Ildan

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Camarines Sur is one province in the Bicol Region that offers a variety of natural attractions. From its pristine beaches (think Caramoan) to its stunning mountains (imagine Mount Isarog and Mount Asog) and relaxing lakes (Buhi, Bato and others), adventure possibilities seem endless.

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And there is more to these natural wonders… One should miss out some of the province’s waterfalls. Case in point, Itbog Twin Falls – an almost 60-feet, almost identical waterfalls cascasding from atop Mount Asog. This not-so-known wonder of nature is tucked in the thriving vegetation of Buhi town. Together with Lake Buhi, Mount and Asog, Itbog serves as one of the town’s major attractions.

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The way to Itbog Falls is a delight in itself especially for nature-lovers. One can saunter for 1.5 to 2 hours through the mountain side or one can rent a motor boat and cross Lake Buhi (plus a short walk) to reach this twin beauty. Just like most waterfalls, water is cold and really refreshing.

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How to Get to Itbog Twin Falls:

The quickest way to reach Camarines Sur is by plane. Flights are serviced by the Air Philippines (Pal Express), Zest Air and Cebu Pacific from Manila to Naga City Airport.  From Naga City, take a bus, van or jeepney going to the city of Iriga.

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The most common way though is by air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned buses like PhilTranco, Isarog Bus Co. and Peñafrancia Bus Lines. These bus companies ply daily through the Quirino Highway from Manila to Naga or directly going to Iriga City. From Iriga City, ride a jeepney to Buhi. The falls can be reached by a banca ride from the town proper of Buhi, then a 30-minute trek.

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An added option is by Train: The PNR has a regular train schedule for the Manila-Ligao City route. The train departs at Tutuban Station in Manila every 6pm and arrives at Ligao City at around 6am the next day. Ride the train and get off at PNR Iriga City Station. The last station is Ligao City station which is around 45 minutes away from Iriga City. Upon arriving in Iriga City, ride a jeep to Buhi.

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be ‘juan’derlust. Take it easy ebri’juan’.

Mag-aso Falls (Bohol, PH)

I go to nature to be  soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order. – John Burroughs

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Visitors who make their way to the island province of Bohol would often visit the ever-famous Chocolate Hills, the stunning man-made forest of Bilar, experience the cruise along Loboc River or just bum around the pristine beaches of Panglao. But for a travel dopehead who likes exploring the off-beaten path, Mag-Aso Waterfalls is some place he/she wants to tick off his/her list.

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Mag-Aso Falls in the town of Antequera, Bohol, is a natural spot that isn’t usually part of a typical Bohol itinerary.   This twin falls, with a height of about 25 feet, is charming against a backdrop of high trees, wild plants, and deep chasm. The rocks at its base, gnarled through the years, form a large catchbasin creating a natural pool.

with friends I met along the way...
with friends I met along the way…

Trekking your way to the falls is made easy though the concrete steps (around 200) made by the local government of Antequera (this may be disappointing to some nature seekers though). Nonetheless, it was believed essential for those who do not have the ability to pass through slippery track. Shelters were also built for people who would like to take a rest or take refuge in case it rains.

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If one looks up in to the forest, you will see a smoke like mist.  This was where the name Mag-Aso coined as the term “aso”, in the local dialect means “smoke”.

How to Reach Mag-Aso Falls:

Take a flight to Tagbilaran City, the capital of Bohol. Once in the city, there are passenger jeepneys and buses going to Antequera. If you’re in the city center, hail a tricycle and ask the driver to take you to the terminal of jeepneys going to Antequera. Travel time from Tagbilaran to Antequera is just about 30 minutes.

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Once you reach the town proper of Antequera, look for habal-habal motorcycle or even a tricycle which can take you to Mag-aso Falls. The falls is located in Barangay Can-omay roughly 2 kilometers away from the town proper. You may ask the habal-habal driver to wait for you while you are in the falls or you may ask for his cellphone number so yo can contact him once you are ready to leave the place. Entrance fee is at Php30.00 (this was wayback 2012 when I got the chance to visit the place).

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be ‘juan’derlust. Take it easy ebri’juan’.

Tuddingan Falls (La Union, PH)

Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising every time we fall. – Confucius

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The Province of La Union maybe the smallest in terms of land area from the 4 provinces of Ilocos Regione but it is as blessed as its neighboring provinces in terms of natural wonders. Besides being frequented for its “surfable” waves in the towns of San Juan and Bacnotan, the province has several majestic waterfalls.

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One particular waterfalls that is pretty easy and accessible is Tuddingan Falls in the Municipality of Naguilian. Formerly called Burayok Falls, the falls is just about seven kilometers away from the town proper.

People who intend to visit this natural wonder, have the frill of walking on a 700-meter cemented pathway with grills up to the hill overlooking the waterfall. The path is lined with some forest trees and shrubs, the sound of animals and flowing water that will surely make a relaxing breather during the short hike.

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Tuddingan Falls is a simple place for nature lovers. This 70-feet waterfalls is made picturesque because of the beautifully layered rock strata from which it flows down to a catch-basin that is ideal for swimming.

The best time to visit the falls is between the months of July to December.

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How to get there: 
From Manila take any bus going to any of these north-western Luzon places namely: Laoag City, Vigan City, Candon City, Abra and La Union. Inform the driver/conductor that you be dropped at the Bauang town plaza.

Then, ride a jeepney or mini-bus at the waiting shed some few meters away eastwards near the public Library. At Naguilian Town proper, take a tricycle or jeepney bound for the town of Bagulin, which is about 6 Kilometers away from the town proper of Naguilian. The jump-off point is at Barangay Tuddingan (just after a bridge) and from there, walk your way to the falls.

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be a wanderlust. Take it easy ebriwan. Roamulofied out…

Tappiyah Falls (Ifugao, PH)

“Water is precious; it is the very source of life and a free gift from the Creator.” -Desmond M. Tutu DSC_0879 Tappiyah Falls is a stunning, 70-meter waterfalls tucked in the mountains of Banaue. This is part of an Ifugao sojourn together with a trek to the world-renowned, amphitheatre-like Batad Rice Terraces. (FYI:  Tappiyah is a local term that translates into “splash” in English). DSC_0843 Going to this wonder requires a walk through tortuous, precipitous and treacherous trail. It surely is not for the faint-hearted but the experience and the waterfalls ‘beauty is more than rewarding. DSC_0873 To reach the falls, one has to pass through the verdant and stunning Batad Rice Terraces. Then, one gets to pass a landslide prone, downhill area will test your patience and endurance. Extra caution should be practiced in this slightly steep descent to the waterfalls. There is a resting area with a local selling some much needed refreshments. The rest of the trail downhill to the falls can already be easy. Batad Rice Terraces blog here at https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/05/27/batad-rice-terraces/ DSC_0920 Once you arrive, the imposing beauty of Tappiyah will mesmerize your senses. The water is extremely cold. One would surely love to take a dip to relax your tired body muscles after that long, hot walk.

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How To Reach Tappiyah: Manila to Banaue: Take a 9-hr overnight Ohayami Trans bus to Banaue. It leaves at 10PM from the Ohayami station near UST (Lacson Avenue cor. Fajardo Street). The fare each way is around 500php and it gets you into Banaue at 7AM the next day DSC_0934 Sagada to Banaue: From Sagada town, take a 40-min public jeepney ride to Bontoc for 50php. It leaves every half hour from 6:30AM until 9AM, then every hour from 9AM until 1PM. From Bontoc, ride in a van bound for Bananue for 150php. The van leaves from the tourism office three times a day at 8:30AM, 10AM, and 1PM. Travel time is around 2 hours. DSC_0945 Banaue to Batad: Upon arrival in Banaue town, visitors are requested to register at the tourism office and pay the the environmental. You can then take a jeepney or tricycle to an area called the Saddle — the closest point to Batad village that a vehicle can go. From here, walk your way through the rice terraces until you reach the waterfalls.

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Don’t be a wasted soul, be a wanderlust. Take it easy ebriwan.

Lulugayan Falls (Calbiga, Samar PH)

In life, we are confronted with several options. Travelling may serve the same options life gives – the more popular and safe ones or the off-beaten tracks that is defined by uncertainty. Which path to take is determined entirely by our own actions, our decisions, and our priorities. I personally like roads that are less travelled. One of my backpacking experiences in the Visayas has led me to explore a place only to most locals knew of. DSC_3903 After an awesome trip to Biri and Capul Islands in Northern Samar, my friend Imma and I were off to Tacloban. But for some reasons, we ended up working pur way to a quiet town in Western Samar called Calbiga. Calbiga is home to a cave system known to some. But we were more interested when their tourism officer mentioned about a falls they call their version of a “Mini Niagara” at this side of the Philippines.DSC_3907So, without any know-how of this waterfalls, we bravely made our way to the mountainous area of Calbiga and see for ourselves Lulugayan Falls. The term “lologayan” or “lulugayan” came from the waray-waray root word “logay” meaning to unfold a braided long hair.  The term probably came from a legend of a maiden who frequently visited the place to rinse her long hair.  Lulugayan Falls is is said to have originated from Calidongan Lake to which the water goes down the Calbiga River.PicMonkey CollageThe fastest way is through a “habal-habal”/ motorcycle. Going to the site, we had to endure some butt-cracking-cramping ride. The roads are exquisitely unpaved, muddy and long and winding. It took as an hour or so before we reached the jump-off site. From the registration area, a 740 meter trail awaits to saunter for approximately twenty to thirty minutes well before you see the waterfalls. (Actually, from afar, one could already see the surprisingly wide waterfalls plus its cascading waters flowing into the Calbiga River).DSC_3892As we continue walking through the narrow trail, we were greeted by trees that reach a hundred feet into the air, and some chirping birds and butterflies freely roaming. Then you’ll notice a butterfly tiled path that leads directly to the waterfalls.DSC_3898As we draw nearer, the mist coming from the waterfalls gently touched my face as if it is telling me – “God bless you for you have seen such great beauty”. And the thud of water pouring is telling me to “come and take a plunge”.DSC_3941I had to stop for a moment from where I was standing and allowed myself to be amazed (once again) by God’s awesome creation. It wasn’t something I have expected. The utter volume of water gushing over the rocks and the picturesque view of the falls (despite the gloomy/cloudy weather that day) is such a sight to behold. Really stunning! Truly, the Philippines is gifted with so many natural wonders.CSC_4085 DSC_4033 How To Get There: Calbiga is an hour travel away from Tacloban, known to be a fourth class municipality in the province of Samar. Passing through the famous San Juanico Bridge that connects the province of Samar and Leyte, couple of towns of Samar. From the town of Calbiga, hire a habal-habal that will take you to Lulugayan Falls in Brgy. Literon.DSC_3985 DSC_3952Note: Other than taking a relaxing bath at the falls, you can also do tubing activity. And if the current from the waterfalls isnt too strong, one may hike up to Calidongan Lake  🙂

Tinago Falls (Lanao del Norte, PH)

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better. – Albert Einstein

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Tinago Falls, a 240-feet cascading beauty, is one of the most famous waterfalls in the Philippines’ City of Majestic Waterfalls, Iligan City. Tinago Falls is located in the heart of the abysmal ravine between Brgy. Ditucalan in Iligan and the Municipality of Linamon, Lanao del Norte, Mindanao. Next to Maria Christina Falls, this waterfalls is also a frequently visited natural wonder.

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The moniker Tinago Falls was coined from a Tagalog word which means hidden since going to the falls requires an arduous downhill and winding trek before it can be reached. It’s as if the falls are tucked away and is meant only for adventure-spirited individuals.

Once you reach the falls, you’ll immediately be smitten by its charming waters, gushing admirably into a deep, serene catch-basin that looks like a lagoon with cerulean waters that’s very inviting for a dip. Underneath the waterfalls is a pothole where one can stay and be battered as if one is having a massage.

Way going down down down.
Way going down down down.

Being a photography enthusiast, Tinago falls is a delight to capture although I had a bit difficulty in taking photos as the mists from the waterfalls were forming droplets in front of my lens. Nonetheless, the beauty of this waterfalls made up for some of my hazy shots.

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HOW TO GET THERE

From Manila/Cebu/Davao to Cagayan de Oro (By plane via Cagayan de Oro, more appropriately Laguindingan Airport). From the airport or terminal, take a bus heading to Iligan City at Balua Integrated Bus and Jeepney Terminal. Travel time is around 2 hours with an interval of 15-20 minutes before the next bus. Fare is @85 Pesos. Once in Iligan City, you may take either of these routes:

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Buru-un Route (Iligan City) : From Iligan City, take a jeepney that leads to Buru-un. Tell the driver to drop you in an intersection to Tinago Falls. From crossing, hire a single motor or habal habal heading to the jump off point of Tinago Falls. Fare varies from P50-P80 per way (depending on your haggling skills).

Linamon Route: From Iligan City, ride a jeep that leads to Buruan. Again, tell the driver to drop you off at the border of Linamon and Buruan. From the small marke, ask the single motorcycle driver to take you to the Highland Resort, the jump off point of Tinago Falls. This route is said to be a more suitable one since the roads are entirely concreted.

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Upon arriving at the area, a 10-15 minute trek is required to reach the waterfalls. The walk requires sauntering around 500 steep steps downwards.

Rates:

  • Entrance fee – Php 25.00
  • Cottages – Php 100-300
  • Table only – Php 50.00
  • Life Jackets – Php 25.00/ person
  • Raft – Php 10.00/person
  • Guide: no standard rate for the guide

Choose Philippines

Come and visit the 7, 107 islands of the Philippines!

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We have islands like emerald gems floating atop aquamarine waters.

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https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/31/dicalubuan-island-coron-palawan-philippines/

https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/18/nogas-island-antique-philippines/

https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/12/the-twin-beach-of-el-nido-nacpan-calitang/

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To spectacular, awe-inspiring sunsets…

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El Nido

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Some fascinating architectural landmarks…

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https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/19/sultan-hassanal-bolkiah-masjid-cotabato-philippines/

Home to some exotic fauna…

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https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/27/stingless-jellyfish-of-tojoman-lagoon-philippines/

To spectacular and picture-perfect landscapes…

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https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/10/mount-pulag/

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To endless stretch of white and pristine beaches…

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https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/21/the-surprisingly-pristine-beaches-of-burgos-and-agno-pangasinan-philippines/

https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/20/salagdoong-beach-siquijor-philippines/

We also boast off our majestic and enchanting waterfalls…

Majestic majestic!!!
Majestic majestic!!!

https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/26/tinuy-an-falls-surigao-del-sur-philippines/

https://roamulofied.wordpress.com/2015/03/16/majestic-asik-asik-spring-falls-north-cotabato/

And many more… This 2015, make Philippines your ultimate destination getaway!

Tinuy-an Falls (Surigao del Sur, Philippines)

“There is a hidden message in every waterfall. It says, if you are flexible, falling will not hurt you!”  ― Mehmet Murat ildan

Tinuy-an Falls is considered the widest waterfall in the Philippines. It is approximately 95 meters wide and 55 meters (180 ft) tall. This well-tucked gem of is situated towards the rainforest of Bislig, Surigao del Sur. It has been tagged as “The Little Niagara Falls” of the Philippines. Its white and astounding water gushes to its three different levels (the base pool is elevated at 50 meters above sea level and its largest fall drop is elevated at 70 meters above sea.) making this place as one of the most picturesque and the most visited tourist spot in this side of Mindanao, Philippines.

DSC_4336 It takes around forty-five minutes to an hour of habal-habal (motorcycle) ride from the Bislig City proper to the waterfalls located in Brgy. Borboanan. Most of the roads are not yet asphalted (so expect a dusty, long and winding ride). But once you reach the place, the natural beauty of Tiny-an will make you feel a lot better. Such majestic spot is a photography and nature-enthusiasts heavenly abode. It is perfect avenue for on-the-spot photo-shoots.

How to go to Bislig, Surigao del Sur:
From Butuan Bancasi Airport (Agusan del Norte): Go to Langihan Terminal, ride a bus bound for Mangagoy (Bislig) (approx. 5 hour trip)

From Surigao del Norte: Take a bus bound for Butuan and take bus bound for Mangagoy. (This was the route I took because prior to this trip, I went to Siargao).

From Britania, San Agustin, Surigao del Sur: Ride bus going to Butuan and alight at Barobo terminal. From there, take another bus bound for Mangagoy (Bislig).

From Davao City: Take buses/van that go directly to Bislig. One may also take those bound for Butuan and alight at Mangagoy (Bislig).

***Most locals refer Bislig as Mangagoy (and most buses have this signage as well).

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Once in Bislig, hire a habal-habal: Rate could range from P300-500 including waiting time (and depending on your haggling skills). Entrance fee is P20.00.

Majestic Asik-Asik Spring Falls (North Cotabato)

Asik-Asik Spring Falls is located at Sitio Dulao, Upper Dado, Alamada, North Cotabato in the island of Mindanao. This spring falls is one-of-a-kind and is majestic in every corner because there is no stream above the hill where the water comes. It is believed that the water is springing from the rocks. And this is was the highlight of my recent weekend getaway.

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How to Reach Asik-Asik Falls

From Manila, we opted to take the Cotabato City (airport) route since its is the nearest and most convenient. Flight from Manila to Awang Airport in Cotabato is around 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Majestic majestic!!!
Majestic majestic!!!

From Awang, ride a jeepney going to the city proper and ask the driver to drop you off at Don Rufino Alonzo St. (Magallanes) where the Weena Express Terminal bound for Davao City is found. One can either be dropped off at the town of Libungan, which is around 30-40 minutes from Cotabato City or at the town of Midsayap, around 1 hour trip. Take a “double tire” jeep to Alamada, Cotabato (around 45 minutes). From there, hire a habal-habal that would bring you to the waterfalls.

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***While the vista is eye-gasmic, the habal-habal ride could be one of the most tiresome, butt muscle cramping ride you will ever experience, so make sure you are physically ready for it. Nonetheless, once you reach Asik-Asik, all that weary feeling will be washed away.DSC_1760

It is best to drop by Alamada’s tourism office for registration and proper assistance.

In case you arrive a little late in Cotabato City, you may opt to stay overnight in Midsayap. One can choose from the following cheap and safe accommodation: Rudy’s tavern, Hilltop Inn, Pioneer Lodge, White Hut Inn and Resort, Hotel Angelo, Ju-Eds Lodging House and Twin Cubs Haven Hotel and Coffee Shop. The following day, early in the morning, take a “double tire” jeep going to Alamada. From Alamada, hire a habal-habal to the waterfalls.

For further information, please contact Alamada Municipal Tourism Officer RJ Neville Repollo at +639496898858.

Awestruck with Asik-Asik
Awestruck with Asik-Asik

Tumalog Falls (Cebu)

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Tumalog Falls (Mag-ambak or Toslob Falls), a multi-step cascading waterfalls uniquely crafted in an umbrella-like stone formations, is a must-visit scenery in Southern Cebu. This is frequented by both local and foreign visitors after doing whale-shark swimming in Oslob and bumming around Sumilon Island.

The waterfalls, that looks like rain shower, is just approximately 10 minutes away via car or “habal-habal” (motorbike). From the main road, one goes up the mountain and reach the parking area. From the parking area, one can choose to hike 10 – 15 minutes downwards to the falls or rent a motorbike at approximately PhP 50 per person both ways.

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***Travel time from Cebu City (South Bus Terminal) to Tumalog Waterfalls: Travelled distance approximately about 112km and spending a total of 2hrs and 45mins, depending on traffic, road conditions and the weather.

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