I love the Quezon province! I’ve been there at least three times and was never left with nothing new to try. Our family’s trip to Baler just this year is probably the coolest trip we’ve had in Quezon so far, maybe because it’s the longest stay we had and a great itinerary and company that came along with it. Let’s get started!
On the outset, here is a full view of our itinerary in case you wanted to take note. Baler is probably 4-5 hour drive from our place in Muntinlupa city (taking off the time that we got lost).
It’s great to have friends who are locals of Baler to guide us throughout the trip. They made sure that we got a taste of Baler’s finest in terms of places to see and delicacies to try. And I think they were very successful.
Now on to the details.
After settling our stuff down, we headed straight to a 15-minute trek to a beautiful (and I think hidden to most tourists) spot in Deteki river. The local Barangay captain, who’s a family friend to our friends, had become our instant friend and tour guide.
The above photo shows the start off point of our trek. It’s basically the foot of the surrounding mountains (I counted three) and where most locals lived. It’s so peaceful that for a moment I envied the families who lived there — humble homes away from the crowd and closer to nature. My thing, really.
We had to cross this beautiful river on strong current twice to get to where we had our lunch, and having Omer without Yuli made it a little bit of a challenge. But I managed with the help of the family and friends.
The water on the Deteki river was coming down straight from the Quezon mountains, and it was cold and clean. We had seafoods, grilled pork and fresh coconut juice for lunch. The kids (Omer and his cousin Talie) swam only for a bit because the water was so cold. After some time of eating and taking pictures, we packed up our things and went back home.
We started the day early and prepared everything for the long day ahead. First stop was the trek to the Ditumabo mother falls. We were told that the mother falls has recently become a full tourist destination and has been included to several Baler tour packages. It was Saturday when we decided to hike, and as expected, the place was jampacked with white utility vans filled with groups of tourists going up.
For a beginner like me, it was not an easy trek. We were pacing super slow because of our baggage (2 kids and our parents) and the weather wasn’t very friendly. There were lots of crossing rivers and rocky uphill trail.
After about almost an hour, we finally saw the beautiful, big mother falls, the tallest I’ve seen so far. At this point, it was like raining hard on us because of the current, and Omer got so cold that he cried. I didn’t dare take a dip in the water because i) I felt so sorry for Omer for not having so much fun, and ii) it was just so crowded that as soon as I saw the people, I already wanted to go back. We just had our picture taken and then waited for the rest of the family to finish dipping. A lesson learned from this experience, maybe it would have been better if we left the kids at home.
We returned at a quicker pace (special thanks to Ivan for carrying Omer almost throughout the trek! Man he is strong!), headed back home and prepared for the next part of the itinerary which I thought the kids enjoyed better–the beach!
The Diguisit beach is known for its beautiful rock formations just on the water’s surface. This time, Omer and Talie were the happiest because of the white fine sand and, of course, the heat of the sun.
We had our lunch on this beach, heard lots of funny stories, and suprised our dad with Baler’s Kiwi cupcakes for his 57th birthday. I had forgotten the name of the bakeshop where we got those mini cupcakes, but they sure are delicious!
After all the food and fun, we headed straight to Sabang beach so our guys could try surfing. I would have tried it but thought twice. My first ever take on surfing should be shared with Yuli (mushy wife here!) so I passed. Nonetheless, I am totally pleased with how Omer enjoyed the big waves and the black sand. He loves all things sand! We went to a resort called Costa Pacifica, where we had a taste of Baler’s special Pako Pizza and Tinapa Pizza. I totally forgot to take a photo but they sure both looked and tasted good! Some of us enjoyed surfing while some enjoyed the food (sand for Omer). Total win-win!
Last day was actually just for the Old Balete tree. I have read a lot of blogs saying that this is a must-see, and I couldn’t agree more. We heard lots of myths and urban legends on Balete trees as kids, and I wanted to get a feel for it up close.
I just had to take this picture before heading out. 😉
Planning on a trip to Baler soon? Let me know your thoughts and experience on the comments below!
‘Til the next 3-day trip,