One of my favorite things about living in Manila is that there are plenty of places to visit within a weekend. No need for a long or short haul flight. No need to file a vacation leave. You just pack your bag, pick a destination, and get away from the busy city for two days. Easy as pie.
Baler, Aurora is only five hours away from Manila by car. The original intent of the family was to surf, but since we’re going away for two days, we also booked some sidetrips. Here are the places we’ve been to when we were in Baler, Aurora:
Having a 12-15 m diameter and standing tall at 60-65 meter, this balete tree at Maria Aurora is said to be the biggest balete tree in Asia. And guess what? You can actually go inside the balete tree! Um, no thanks, I’ve heard of kapres and I’m not a fan of them. This tree is around 600 years old, who know who’s living there. Not that it stopped my brothers and uncles tho.
Fan fact, a kapre is from the Filipino folklore. Kapre is about two to three meters tall, black, stinky and hairy, with glowing green eyes to boot. He is always told to be sitting in the balete tree and smoking.
Tibag Sabang Bridge
I have a thing with hanging bridges. I actually like it swaying with the wind and movements, and the feeling of maybe falling off. My little cousins didn’t think the same way as they were holding really tight to the railings and didn’t even make it a fourth of the way. Haha! It’s also really fun to take photos in a hanging bridge.
Museo de Baler
Museo de Baler hosts artifacts from the time Spaniards were ruling over the country, among other things. Some Chinese porcelain recovered from shipwrecks during the Galleon Trade was also present in the museum. There was even a statue of the late President Manuel Quezon in the center of the museum’s park as it was his hometown. The place was actually really small tho, and some of the paintings were on the floor, and not up when we visited. It doesn’t look well-managed, but it’s worth a short visit. Entrance fee is only 20 pesos, I think.
Soooooo… these are three out of the five main destinations we visited in Baler. I didn’t realize how photo heavy this post would end up to be so I’m making a part two for my Baler trip! See you guys, there?