Bicol National Park Things to Do
Located in Gubat, close to the turbulent San Bernardino Strait. Rizal Beach is long and sandy. An ideal place for boating, swimming and beachcombing. According to our host, Rizal Beach is the only white beach in Bicol Mainland (or maybe one of the few, not including the beaches of Cantanduanes and Masbate). Anyway, it’s 5 minutes from their house....more
The time we were in Bicol was around Holy Week. There were lots of religious (Bicol is highly religious. Take note that it is one of the earliest Spanish settlements in the Philippines) activities going on then. Our host’s mother compelled us to join the Good Friday procession. Of course, it’s nothing alien to me as we have that in Manila also, so...more
We visited our host’s brother’s farm, a 45-minute drive from our lodging in Sorsogon. The farm is actually not a place where the crops produced are sold for business/profit, their house is located in the farm and they just enjoy the fruits of it. WHAT WE DID IN THE FARM: 1. Feed the pigs.2. Looked in the fish fond, lots of tilapia3. Had fresh...more
There are numerous centuries old churches in the Bicol region. I especially like the ones in Sorsogon, well-preserved and almost mysterious. Attending Mass in churches like these always give me a special feeling compared to when I say Mass in Manila. Of course faith has got nothing to do with the physical church itself. Just that an old structure...more
From San Benon Springs on the way to Bulusan Lake, we dropped by Masacrot, (Bicol meaning, bitter). It is a naturally carved pool set amidst tree groves and botanical garden. There are huts and cottages for rent cheaply. The set up is suitable for youngsters or group of friends and maybe for lovers, too. ENTRANCE FEE: P20 for swimming P10...more
Sorsogon has numerous hot and cold natural springs. One of them is Mateo Hot Spring. Also known as San Benon Springs, it is a hot spring of Bulusan Volcano. There are about 4-5 pools, some are shallow enough for young kids to enjoy. The resort is kept clean. Cottages or huts can be rented out and grill area per hut is provided. Bringing and...more
Bicol National Park Restaurants
By the highway: HALO-HALO
I appreciated it so much that where we went to and pass through in Bicol, there weren’t much of McDonald’s and Jollibee’s. Whew. There are plenty of small food stores or local restaurants. One must try them as Bicol cuisine is something different and distinguishable.
In general Bicolanos want their food spicy hot, lots of chilis. I had no problem with that. Seafoods are fresh. Pork meat is cheap. Suman (cooked rice snack wrapped in banana leaves) is prepared differently in Sorsogon, rice is cooked in thick coconut milk. Hmmm, creamy.
The restaurant in the picture is one we passed by along the highway, great view of the sea. It’s a local fastfood restaurant (locally, we call such “turo-turo) that serves meals to travelers passing by.
Favorite Dish: I particularly loved their halo-halo (P15 per glass). Delicious ingredients. Maybe it's the melon, it's not often that i get to eat halo-halo with melon strips.
Bicol National Park Shopping
Seafood , wide variety of it, is abundant in Bicol especially in the coastal towns. Plenty of squids, shrimps, crabs, and lots of fishes. It is affordably priced too. When we were in Sorsogon for 5 days, every day was a seafood festival for us. Our host served us different preparation of fresh seafood. P100/kilo of big squidsP110/kilo of small...more
The Philippines is a major producer of pineapple, 17% of the world production, ranking second to the Thailand, Bicol is in the 4th region in the country with the largest production of pineapples. It was in Daet Camarines (a Bicol province) where I got the taste of the sweetest pineapple, and it was incredibly sold very cheap when bought...more
Bicol is second in ranking in the orchids production (no.1 being Southern Mindanao). Bicol shares 22% of the country’s total production. Bulusan Lake is abundant in orchids. Flowers , plants and orchid prices in Bicol is really affordable, especially the small plants in the pots. The question however is if they can survive the long trip back...more
Bicol National Park Off The Beaten Path
Our host called it Orok, so as the locals. The signage says MICRO FOREST PARK.
It’s hidden but not actually unknown, it’s just that the place is hard to reach, semi rough road, muddy. We had to get out of our vehicle and walk some hundred meters to the place as the wheels of the truck got trapped in the mud.
Orok is another Bulusan spring in the middle of a forest. The water there is icy cold, good during a very hot summer day. The water goes into the reservoir that supplies water to the town of Casiguran. The water in the pool is very clear and though shallow, we were able to snorkel and saw some small fishes, crabs and cleaner shrimps.
ENTRANCE FEE: P5/adult
Bicol National Park Favorites
Be Observant on Parking Lot
Favorite thing: When you bring your car to a parking lot especially at night..by-standers might approach you offering their services to watch for your car while it is parked.
My experience was I told them that I don't need anyone to guard my car..well of course nothing is free so if you ask them to watch your car you have to pay eventually.
I left the car in the parking lot and when I came back, my side mirror was broken..somebody broke it while I am away.