This blog is all about roaming the Bicol Region, Philippines wisely on a budget. We'll talk about what Bicol has to offer when it comes to great hotel deals, good food and where to go on your vacation. So, I hope this blog site will be helpful to those of you on the look out for great deals while you have fun in Bicol. Also, I will be sharing what my life here is like and some of the things that I find interesting in my side of the world.
Last week, we went to this resort that I discovered online – Euresian Paradise Resort in Pasacao, Camarines Sur.
As there is a serious lack of beaches near Naga City, we decided to go to Pasacao again. However, I wanted a clean place to go to since the first time I have seen Balogo Beach I did not find it very clean.
So, I checked Euresian Paradise Resort online and instantly became interested. We arrived around 10:00 in the morning and the sun was thankfully bright enough to enjoy a dip in their swimming pool.
The view of the horizon was great from their viewing deck.
Although the resort barely has its share of the beach to enjoy (the area is composed of mangroves and marine plants), they have developed a swimming area with concrete divisions separating it from the mangroves.One important thing to consider if you want to enjoy this swimming area is to get there early in the morning because by 12:00 noon, the tide will be low and the water becomes too shallow.
For lunch, we grilled some marinated pork, chicken and some hotdogs. We paid P50.00 for the use of their grill and the charcoal was also included in the fee.
Entrance Fee: P150.00 (adults), P100.00 (kids).
Cottage is priced from P500.00 to P1,000.00.
Thanks for dropping by! See you again next time. Bye!
Our trip did not seem very promising. I slept late the night before and initially woke up at 4:30 AM and it was raining heavily. I know we decided to go through with it, rain or shine, but I had second thoughts about bringing Julienne along. Will it be okay to bring her in this kind of weather? Anyhow, the rain was not able to keep us from taking a short trip to Hibiscus Camp in Consocep, Tigaon, Camarines Sur.
Our first stop was along the meandering road on our way up to Consocep. We were on an elevated road and found ourselves enchanted by the picturesque landscape. It was very windy and the sky was gray, it did really feel like we were in “the middle of nowhere” but we loved every minute of it.
As the car continued to ascend on the zigzag road that climbs uphill, we reached our second stop. We enjoyed yet even more picturesque landscapes.
Photo credit: Mam Cha’s FB
There was a little house there and beside it were these fresh produce on display – bananas, sweet potatoes and even avocadoes. The problem was, nobody was around so we couldn’t buy anything. And we really really wanted to buy some. Don’t worry, the only things we ever took were these photos.
We continued to drive uphill and passed by the entrance of Consocep Nature Park. We had to pass that one up because of the weather and the younger kids couldn’t handle the trek. I looked it up online and I know there are three waterfalls to see in that place. A few meters up ahead and we reached Hibiscus Camp. It got seriously foggy in these parts too.
This wooden cabin was the first thing we saw (amidst all the fog). I could have taken nice photos of the cabin but then it started to rain heavily, so we had to rush for shelter. So, grabbin’ this photo (below) from Mam Cha’s FB instead 😉
Hey, did I mention it was foggy?
I like my views misty. Reminds me of the time I went to Sagada with some friends. It was really an amazing place and wonderful people too.The camp has a three-tiered swimming pool but I decided not to go swimming because it was cold, so when the fog cleared up a bit, I explored the place by myself.
I was hoping to not leave a stone unturned but I regret not being able to take pictures of the inside of the cabin. When I got there, someone was cooking in the kitchen and having conversation with another person, and I didn’t want to intrude.
To tell the truth, this place is probably the prettiest I have seen in Bicol so far. It is being dubbed as Bicol’s “Little Baguio” right now and you can see why from the coolness of the place, high altitude, the flowers and the mist.
You will definitely like it if you’re into nature and stuff. It is perfect for celebrations and pre-nuptial photo shoots, but during weekdays maybe. It is fast becoming a popular destination that there is not enough cottage during weekends. Also, the area is not that huge and still under developed but the views are surreal.
They have no rooms for overnight accommodations. It would have been nice though. And it would be best to visit in the summer because when you’re high up on a mountain, I found out that the rain can be a real pain in the rear.
How to get there: From Naga City, take the Diversion Road in Pili, Cam Sur and upon reaching the junction at Anayan, take the left turn going to Ocampo. It takes approximately 30 minutes and you should reach the junction at Hanawan, Ocampo that will take you up to Consocep. Around 8 kilometers along the zigzag road and you will pass by the entrance of Consosep Nature Park and a few meters up ahead, just along the road, is the Hibiscus Camp.
Entrance Fee is P25.00 only per person for those who just want to have a look around and take pictures. For those who want to swim: Adults are charged P100.00 while kids are charged P50.00.
It was easy enough to find and the road, although zigzagging, is solid concrete. It was our first time to go there and we didn’t get lost at all.
P.S. : All photos are mine except those I give credit to whom credit is due =)
Every town in the Philippines is famous (at least nationwide) for one thing or another. Bicol is tagged as the Sili (chilli) Capital of the Philippines. And every town in Bicol is also well-known for a specific crop, product, or tradition that is endemic in the region.
For instance, Naga City is known for its kinalas (a noodle soup not so different from the batchoy of Visayas), Sorsogon for its Pili fruits and baluko (a kind of edible shellfish), Daet for the sweet Formosa pineapples and kakanin (variety of cassava or sticky rice cakes), Ligao for its Christmas lights and the town of Camalig for its pinangat (taro leaves cooked in coconut milk). There are many more to mention but each town is special because of something and they hold festivals each year to celebrate the products that are uniquely their own.
Now, let’s talk about the town of Bula. Do you know that this place is known for its vast supply of bamboo? Bula is a quaint little town located in Camarines Sur. It is also one of the oldest municipalities in the province (one of the first four towns along with Naga, Quipayo and Nabua) founded by the Spanish conquistadores when they came to the Philippines in 1500s.
Bamboo is the town’s pride and joy. Not only does bamboo beautify Bula’s surroundings but it puts the town on the map thru the innovative way of turning this locally revered humble grass into a piece of beautiful art – the engineered bamboo.
In 2012, the Local Government Unit of Bula (together with the DOST, PCW, DTI and DOLE, built a Common Service Facility (CSF) located in Barangay Pawili with an area of 1.260 hectares. The CSF aims to promote and support the One Town, One Product (OTOP) vision of the municipality with bamboo furniture as the flagship product. This facility was built in order for the people of Bula to master the technology of bamboo engineering, develop ways to further strengthen the bamboo and come up with beautiful and classic designs. The CSF intends to bring livelihood, art, and culture together. It naturally brought jobs to many people and pride to the otherwise sleepy town.
Many people pass by Bula through the Maharlika Highway, usually on the way to Albay or Naga City, and they hardly see the true character and beauty of the town. Its charm lies in its simplicity and tranquillity, its magnificent sceneries, captivating agricultural landscapes and breath-taking views. Bula Masarig captures the essence of the place and lovingly incorporates it into every piece of furniture to give you the same kind of experience right in the comfort of your own home.
It was my first time to go to Pasacao two days ago, and it was only about 40 minutes of commute from Naga City, where I live. That near, but it took me nearly six years before I was able to go. I used to hear about it a lot though. I also heard that the beach was not impressive so I was not really in a hurry to see it.
So, it was the perfect opportunity when a family reunion (Yoy’s side) was scheduled on the 3rd of May to finally give Pasacao a visit. Although I learned that it has always been their tradition to hold the reunion on that same date every year, it was our first time to attend. I guess, we always had a valid reason (or some poor excuse) not to go.
Anyway, how to get there from Naga City? Ask a tricycle driver to take you to the van terminal in Sabang near LCC Department Store. The tricycle fare is P8.00 per person while the van fare to the town of Pasacao is P50.00 per person. Upon reaching Pasacao, ask a tricycle driver to take you to Barangay Balogo where the beach is. The tricycles can be rented for P100.00 per trip to transport a whole group of people to Balogo. There should be no problem looking for a place to stay when you get to Balogo as resorts and travel lodges are everywhere.
As expected, Balogo beach was no reason to jump up and down about. The beach was crowded and loud with drunk people singing karaoke the whole night, and a bit disorganized. The sand is also on the gray side and dogs roam about. So, at the crack of dawn the next day, we rented a boat for P600 to bring us to the island of Daruanak- the one just across the beach. And to Mainit Island after.
Daruanak Island has a nicer beach, it is on the lighter side with broken corals and rocks. It’s a lot cleaner too, even the water looks bluer. A lot better for swimming.
We did not take a dip that time though because someone said there were urchins, so we decided to head on to Mainit Island, which is so called because there is a spring thereat that spouts hot water.
The view on the way to the next island…
In Mainit Island, the water is a little warm which is great for swimming. The shore is full of pebbles, all of different shapes, sizes and colors. I even found some blunt white crystals that got me a little excited. I had a field day picking my loot, only to leave them all behind on the boat when we got back to Balogo beach =(
It was a good day that went by too fast, then finally, it was time to go back home. Our happy faces though could mean we may be back next year. Same day too!
Sun, sea and wind on your face. Enough to make you forget all the never-ending deadlines at work and finally be free, even just for a day or two. All you need for a weekend getaway. Jason Mraz sang “You don’t need a vacation when there’s nothing to escape from…” Unfortunately for the rest of us Jason, we do need a vacation.
So one time, we gathered everyone and cramped ourselves in two vans and headed off to Aguirangan Island looking for just that, an escape, a weekend getaway from work.
Aguirangan Island is located in Maangas, Presentacion, Camarines Sur, around 2 hours away from Naga City. So, we took the Pili Diversion road and turned left and drove all the way to Presentacion. Upon reaching Barangay Maangas, we coordinated with the Barangay Captain for guidance where to park the vehicles while we spend the night on the island which was on sight from the Barangay Hall by the way. Now, proper coordination was a must for our safety and the safety of the vehicles, plus they hooked us up with the bankero (boatman) so we would get a good deal.
Upon reaching the island, I was surprised that it was actually quite small and can be toured on foot in 5 minutes, the others said. So Manong Caretaker ushered us to this shady cottage which is a little far from the beach. They have these cottages under tall trees, which can feel a little creepy though since it felt like you’re deep in the woods. It is way better to stay in the cottages on the beach front for better view and access to the beach. Although, don’t expect to find air conditioned private rooms as there aren’t any. An open cottage is all you get, unless you bring your own tent. Our overnight stay costed us Php2,000.00 for the cottage and for use of amenities (public bathroom only) including the generator as the source of power to light up the whole place.
Anyway, the beach was amazing! Although the sand was not as fine and as white as in Boracay, but it is more like tiny broken corals like the ones in the sand bar of White Island in Camiguin. And the water was not too cold, just perfect for a relaxing swim.
By the way, the entrance fee for day time swimming is Php35.00 per person. There is no store on the island, so bring enough food, water and everything you think you’ll need for your day at the beach. Also, day swimming might be the better idea on this island since as nice as the place is, the state of its public bathroom was not for the faint of heart. Manong needs to do a better job cleaning it as the visitors need to be more responsible in using it.
The next day before we went home, Manong Bankero, as suggested by the Brgy Captain, gave us a surprise treat by taking us to a river (Salog) in the barrio where the water was refreshingly cool and clean. It was the perfect finale to our weekend getaway. (Credits to Bam for the great shot of the river below).