I have been talking about how I had gone busy meeting new people, traveling with complete strangers, and making a bunch of new friends on the road. Yes, I gone too busy that I cannot even remember the last time that I talked about my friends… hmmm… my real friends.

Probably, I got this belief from my favorite movie (it’s too cheesy I’m not going to mention the title), that is, “one should learn to put new set of people in her life to learn how to move forward”… In my case, to totally move forward. Well, I can say that I was successful, I can even give myself an A+ for that.

But just last weekend, I realized that it would always be so nice to go back home — to go back to people who had known you for so long. Over the weekend, I realized that it feels so different to be with people that you can trust. It was so unexplainably wonderful to hang out again with people who had seen you in your best and in your worst; people who had seen you laugh, cry, and puke at the same time but simply laugh their asses off while documenting everything. Tsk. That’s what friends are for, right?

Last weekend was awesome, oh, last weekend trip was more than awesome… definitely, ONE of the BEST TRIPS EVER!

Oh, yeah! Baler is sweeter the second time around.

Haler Baler Version 2.0
Well, this trip was totally opposite from my first visit to Baler; this time, it only took us around 5.5 hrs to reach Baler against the 9-hour-hilo-gutom-drive that we had before. We took the other route which is quite shorter and less zigzag road (which I personally think is less scary too). We got to Aliya Surf Camp by 9:30 AM, so as usual, just like the other resorts, lodges, and/or transients in Baler, we cannot check-in until 2PM. So we decided to start our day by going to one of the famous spots in Baler – the Balete Tree (aka the Millennium Tree).

The Millennium Tree is a 600-year-old Balete Tree located along the dirt roads in Maria Aurora. It has been said that an estimate of 60 people holding hands together is needed to hug the full circumference of the tree.

Hahaha doppelgangers! A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!

In my 2 visits, I noticed that some people refuse to go and check what’s inside the hollows of the huge tree. Well, I cannot blame them, it has been believed that balete trees are home for… hmm.. home for, ugh, forget it. But I bet you know what I’m talking about if you’d been watching Magandang Gabi Bayan’s Halloween Specials before.

Inside the not so creepy unimaginably huge Balete Tree

Next stop: Mother Falls (aka Ditumabo Falls)
I was quite frustrated with the sudden changes at Mother Falls. When we went to Ditumabo Falls last March 2014, the only thing that we had to pay for would be the Parking Fee for Php20.00 and the Php1.00-Php2.00 donations along the way. Now, there are actually a lot of fees being collected; the guide said, it is because of the conflict of the 2 land owners. In addition, the tricycle terminal seems like strategically located just after the entrance; they would charge you Php300/one-way. DO NOT GIVE IN, you can even get a whole Baler Tour in Sabang as cheap as Php700.00 (good for 2 pax). So if you can trek a little, go ahead and do it. The experience is much better. 🙂

The 45-minute trek might make one a little out of breath, but oh, the view will surely leave you breathless. It seems like every step is just all about you and nature.

Do not ever miss the trek to Ditumabo Falls

Baler is not just all about surfing and waterfalls, it is also recommended for PreNup shoots

Disclaimer: not really a PreNup shoot… for now.

Enjoying the ice cold water of the Mother Falls, the grandest and tallest waterfalls in Baler 

Surfs Up!
The next day, after a quick breakfast, we headed off to Sabang Beach to look for surf instructors. What added to my giddiness was the cheap rate for surfboard rental – Php300 for 1 1/2 hr + instructor. It’s really a good deal!

Surf Surf din pag may time.

On a side note, I just realized that it’s the 10th year of our friendship. (Hala! Cheesy!)
But seriously, i hope to be traveling and giggling with these girls for another 10 years.
Let’s do this again! 🙂

College friends

For details on how to go to Baler + sample itinerary, click here.

Note: This Baler Version 2.0 costs Php2650/pax. It includes an overnight stay in Aliya Surf Camp, roundtrip van transportation Manila-Baler-Manila, tour, 1.5 hrs surfing w/ instructor, food, environmental and entrance fees.


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