Travel Time: Mt. Makiling, Hulugan Falls

3:00:00 AM


 

So at 2 o'clock AM, the alarm rang. Had to hurry and prepare the things we needed to bring.
But there was a problem, the organizer sent me a message saying that they have arrived in the meet up place.
We were originally meeting at 4 o'clock AM, but they have arrived earlier than the estimated time.
So my mom and I had to hurry. After taking a shower we left to ride a jeepney. 
Fortunately it took less than 15 minutes to arrive.
Arrived in the meet up place, McDonalds near the terminal since our jump-off area was at Sto. Tomas, Batangas with an exit point at UP College of Forestry, Los Banos, Laguna.
Lunch at the mountain
My mom and I bought huge burgers for lunch, fries for breakfast and large drinks. We both had two (2) liters of bottled water. We were already late, so we did not order a meal to be eaten for breakfast. I brought a dry bag while my mom brought her usual backpack too since we both do not have a backpack for hiking with us.
It felt a bit awkward that the other members of the group were looking at us since we do not look like we were going to hike up a mountain. Oh right! We are going to hike Mt. Makiling for the whole day. Thus, there is nothing much, but photos for Vitamine Eyes.

I am walking after my mom.
The view of the city from the ridges, around 9AM.
The left side view of the mountain while looking at the city.
It's smaller than my palm.
 
My mom rappelling in the ridges.
The view below from the ridges, it feels like a bed of leaves....

The plant that traps any insect coming in.

The first time I ate duck, while eating lunch with the other members. I asked for a bit. 
It was mine and my mom's first time to do a major hike, but we have been climbing a mountain to reach my grandparents' house every year, it must have helped us.
It took us 10 hours to traverse the whole mountain. My mom and I were always the last. 
Thank you for the organizer Ms. Grace and the sweeper, Mr. McVergil a.k.a M-C. It was such a learning experience and a great one with the two of you assisting us.
There are muddy areas too. This guy is one of the BFP.
Bureau of Fire Protection members who were there.
And we made it! We need to cover ourselves from leeches. Lucky it was summer, so there were few. Still our sweeper got attack with one on his cheek.
  

My mom and I immediately went back to the hotel after resting for around 10 minutes in the UPLB.
Since it was still around 4pm, it was less traffic and we were able to rest in the hotel.

We ate proper dinner just across the hotel.
What else would feed both body and soul at once, FOOD! Yes. So we got here a sauteed string beans with some pork, kind of Bicol Express, Seafood Sinigang which was the best for our worn-out bodies, and a simple pork and egg.


 The Next Day
The next day was Monday and mom needs to go to work, thus, it's my turn to do things myself, by myself, all alone. And because I was so tired on Monday, I left the hotel almost lunch already and rode another bus to Sta. Cruz.
This time, my destination is Hulugan falls. Since it is summer time, I was already expecting it to have less water than usual. What's best with falls, is when I can enjoy the scenery, and refresh my body after walking a lot. Cold water makes it feel better.
But, are you wondering how I could go there? Well, apparently a friend posted in his blog about where to go and how to go there.
When I reached Sta. Cruz, I already know where to ride the jeepney to Lucena, because my mom and I used to look for the jeepney going to Cavinti at first and end up seeing it. Have to ride a jeepney to Lucena as it will be passing through Luisiana where the falls is located. But I have to wait at least 15 minutes or until the jeepney is full before it leaves.
Drop off point: Brgy. San Salvador. 
It isn't difficult to find it because there is a huge sign on it with a waiting shed beside the road.
Just as entering it, a person asked me and had to pay for a small entrance fee. She also called for an available tourist guide to bring me to Kapitan's house for another fee and registration. There are also food, waterproof bags, and souvenir things in the place. 
Started walking to the falls. The road is concrete, others could bring and park their cars, while some rides a tricycle or motorcycle up to the point where you see this photo below.
The trail is quite scary, the railings are all made of bamboo and it is quite high. Those who will have to go there needs a good shoes or sandals, not just slippers. Well, if you are an expert, maybe slippers are okay.
After a long hard walk, the falls beauty showed off. Lots of people and kids are playing and splashing water. Families on vacay are there too. 
While no one seem to try and swim in the middle as it seemed to be really deep.
The stream of water in the bottom area where people could sit and relax, and of course, take a photo.
This is a natural spring water. Some people really do drink from this. I tried, yes it was cool.
Though tourist guides lets their guests enjoy their experience, they also enjoy themselves by jumping, diving, and playing in this area where less tourists comes and swims as it is deeper and darker.
On the way back, I asked the tourist guide about the Sugar Palm Fruit which I have noticed since earlier. It is commonly called here as Kaong which is mostly added in the famous Filipino Fruit Salad.
I can show you my special mix too. Check it out in this link.
It has been known that Sugar Palm Trees only bears fruit once in its lifetime. Once it bears fruit, it will never bear again. Sometimes, in rare occasions, they bear twice, the most. The guide was really kind to me, he even showed me some other trees where the fruits are just within my reach.
This flower is really nice.
For dinner, I and my mom went to the same restaurant again. But this time, only the Sinigang is ordered twice. It's time to taste another menu!
 
Here is the menu in case you are curious. The restaurant has a branch near SM Calamba too.
 

Thank you! 

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