It was 9:30 PM, all was packed up and I was so excited for my flight the next morning going to Macau for the Chinese New Year. It was also that night I just found out that my passport was missing hahaha. I was really a little bit anxious looking for my passport but after an hour, I was fine, accepted the fact that I would not make it. 😦 So, the next morning, I thought I didn’t want to waste my vacation leaves which made me think that I should really go somewhere. So, Baler saved me. 🙂
All I knew about Baler were surfing, big waves and black sand beaches. But I was totally wrong when I decided to book this accidental trip. I didn’t want to challenge myself anymore so instead arranging all that I’d need, I booked this trip through a travel agency. Our assembly time was 12:30AM at MOA. Thanks to God I arrived early but the moment I sat on my seat, we straightaway left for Baler. As of as my counting we were 15 inside the van including the tourist driver. Travel time was 6 to 7 hours and all I did during our trip were nap, listen to my ipod and repeat. 🙂 🙂 🙂 We reached Baler around 7:00 AM with my eyes faintly open 🙂 and our first destination – the largest Balete tree in Asia – Baler Balete Park which is located in Barangay Quirino. Below is the simplified itinerary of our trip.
DAY 1 – MORNING
B a l e r B a l e t e P a r k
(7:00 AM to 8:00 AM)
E r m i t a H i l l
(9:00 Am to 9:45 AM)
D i g u i s i t F a l l s
(10:00 AM to 10:30 AM)
D i g u i s i t B e a c h
(10:30 AM to 10:50 AM)
B a l e r C a t h o l i c C h u r c h
(11:00 AM to 11:15 AM)
O l d H o u s e of D o ñ a A u r o r a
(11:20 AM to 11:35 AM)
M u s e o D e B a l e r
(11: 40 AM to 12: 10 PM)
DAY 1 – AFTERNOON
S a b a n g B e a c h
(4:00 PM to 6:00 PM)
DAY 2 – MORNING
A m p e r e B e a c h
(5:00 AM to 6:00 AM)
D i t u m a b o M o t h e r F a l l s
(8:00 AM to 11:00 AM)
This was my first time to join a group tour. Not bad but here’s my verdict:
- Less hassle. Everything is arranged and you don’t need to worry about your itinerary, accommodation and transportation.
- You gotta meet new friends. All through out the trip, you would be traveling with the same people so why not mingle and make new friends. 🙂
- You have a limited time per destination and if you are a photo addict, given time won’t suffice for you.
- You can’t choose the places you only want to visit, you follow what the travel agency sets for your trip.
If you go here all by yourself or with your friends and you want to visit all those places, you can just rent a trike, fee would be roughly around Php800 to Php1000.
Where did we stay? We lodged at Asheedon Homestay in Barangay Buhangin Purok 5, Baler, contact numbers – 09492820323 / 09499310846 (Smart). Their room rates range from Php2500 (8 people) to Php7000 (18 people). Breakfast per head is Php100 while lunch/dinner is Php150. This place is a real steal for group booking and staff are also nice but the downside – it’s a bit far from the beach :(. I made a list of other places to stay in Baler, you may check my post “Cool Places to Stay in Baler” for details.
How to get here?
- 1st Option: Metro Manila to Baler, Aurora
- Ride a bus heading to Baler (6 to 7 hours), fare is approximately Php450 for ordinary and Php700 for air-conditioned. Kindly tell the conductor to drop you off at Baler bus terminal at the town proper. From there you can just rent a trike to bring you to your hotel (roughly Php100 to Php150).
- Bus companies plying directly to Baler – Genesis Bus and Joy Bus.
- 2nd Option: Metro Manila to Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija to Baler, Aurora
- If trips in option 1 are already full, you could travel first to Cabanatuan and then from there you transfer to another bus going to Baler. Travel time is 3 hours and fare is from Php180 to Php200.
- Bus companies plying to Cabanatuan – ES Transport, Five Star, Baliwag Transit (912-3343 / 364-0860 / 912-9131)
If you have the same get-away, share it on the comment section. 🙂