Taal Travel Guide

  • Things to Do
    by monina_c
  • Dining Room
    Dining Room
    by monina_c
  • photo taken from the side of the basilica
    photo taken from the side of the...
    by monina_c

Taal Things to Do

  • Visit the Basilica de San Martin de...

    The Basilica de San Martin de Tours or simply known as Taal Basilica is located in a most prominent area. It is easily visible in most major streets in the town of Taal. Typical of the hispanic influenced towns in the Philippines which considered the church as the center of town life. :) Standing on the top of the stairs leading to the Basilica you...

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  • Visit the Villavicencio Residence

    This is a MUST SEE in the heritage town of Taal, Batangas. Not only because of its imminence in the history of Philippine Revolution but also as a proof that Filipinas were also actively involved in the fight for Philippine independence. Blogger Traveler on Foot wrote an informative piece about the...

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  • Living la vida local circa Spanish Era

    Visiting Villa Tortuga is a treat for history buffs. Not only do they have period pieces galore but they also have a studio where you can slip into period costumes and be photographed with a backdrop just like you see in antique portraits. Entrance to the heritage house is P50/pax. if you are going to don costumes then add P200/pax to the basic...

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  • Visit the biggest Catholic Chruch in...

    This is a place that you shoudn't miss. Basilica of St. Martin de Tours is amazingly huge! You may opt to climb the highest peak as well. There is a fee of Php 50.00. You will find the entrance going up on the right side of the church.

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  • Old and Amazing

    We made the Basilica our first stop in our trip to Taal Batangas. Being "The Biggest Catholic Church in Asia", we were intrigued by its size. The church dates back to the 1800's and is definitely big. As we were going around the church, a security guard suggested that we go up the bell tower, which was 96 steps up. We were led to a small door where...

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  • Admire the Beadwork and Embroidery

    The "Taal Burda" is famous for its craftmanship and unique design, but I never knew they also did beadwork. I'ved tried doing beadwork in my recent gown project and I am awed at the creations I found in the Taal Market. Had I seen this place 18 years ago, I would've bought my wedding gown here. They have package deals which includes the bridal gown...

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  • Church of Our Lady of Caysasay

    The Church of Our Lady of Caysasay is one of Taal’s distinct cultural structures housing some priceless relics dating back from the Spanish colonial period. Caysasay enshrines the 400-year-old 27-centimeter image of the Virgin fished out by a resident from the Pansipit River in 1603. Legend has it that the image enthroned in Taal Church used to...

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  • Marcela Mariño de Agoncillo Historical...

    This national landmark is the birthplace of Marcela Agoncillo, known as the seamstress of the first Filipino flag. Located in a street aptly named in her honor, the museum prominently displays the different flags used during the Philippine revolution against Spanish colonialization. A mounument in her honor stands at the right side of the historic...

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  • Down Memory Lane in Taal

    One of the basic considerations in declaring Taal a UNESCO Heritage Site is the existence of well preserved ancestral homes. We didn't get to see all the ancestral homes, but we managed to see some on the way to Caysasay. It is amazing how such ancestral homes can give us a good time-warp feeling of Taal's glorious past, not to mention a deeper...

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  • "Hagdan-hagdan" As a Sacrifice

    Since you are on a pilgrimage anyway, consider it a sacrifice to use the "Hagdan-hagdan" route to Our Lady of Caysasay Shrine. It is some 125 steps down from the road, and that would be x2 including your going up. There are level areas between flights where the faint of heart can pause for rest.I suggest that pilgrims pray the rosary or mentally...

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  • Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Caysasay...

    While in Taal, visit the Shrine of Our Lady of Caysasay, and lift up your personal prayer intentions to her.Our Lady of Caysasay has an interesting story that even the young or old Taaleno would be happy to relate to pilgrims. Local folks still remember how in 1603, a fisherman named Juan Maningcad found a small image, about 6 inches tall (which...

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  • Get Some Healing Water From Miraculous...

    My most unforgetable experience in Taal was when we went to the original site of the first miracle of Our Lady of Caysasay. To this day, the remains of the arch still stands, and below it are 2 wells from which pilgrims may get miraculous, healing water. Local folks say that one well is for healing body ailments, and the other is specially for...

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  • Pilgrimage to the Basilica

    Your Taal visit wouldn't be complete without passing by the the Basilica of St. Martin de Tours. For a more solemn prayer, I suggest you set your pilgrimage on a weekday where there are less tourists and churchgoers. Aside from being a symbol of spirituality in Batangas, what is so special about the Basilica? It is an architectural masterpiece,...

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  • Har! Har! Visit the Volcano Of Course!

    :) Go down to Talisay and rent a boat which seats seven (P800/boat, FY 2008 price) . A 15-min boat ride will be followed by a 30-45 minute hike/walk to the volcano crater. They have no restaurant on the island nor do they have lodging that caters to visitors. There is a Department of Tourism Office but with the state of the trail and the general...

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  • Hiking on Taal Volcano to Crater Lake

    This volcano is popularly viewed from Tagaytay, with the postcard perfect, cone-shaped mountain being the main attraction. This postcard favourite however is just a pinch of the Taal Volcano. The whole island is Taal Volcano.We rented a banka (small boat) for P1000 to go to and from the island. The hike to the crater does not require a guide nor a...

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Taal Restaurants

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    by monina_c Written Jan 31, 2008

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    There is no restaurant on the island but residents on the island are willing to kill, dress and cook a chicken for you for the right price. There is also one who is willing to scoop up tilapia from his fish pen and cook it for you for a fee (P100/kg + P100 cooking fee-price negotiable). You will have to order your food before ascending to the crater as it will take them an hour to prepare your food.

    We opted to give this so-called privilege a miss as the people there started to get pushy when we wanted to have some fish cooked for us. The aggro was just not worth the experience of eating on the island.

    I would suggest that you pack a sandwich, some fruits and drinking water with you when you visit the volcano.

    Related to:
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Backpacking
    • Road Trip

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Taal Transportation

  • Boat Rental

    Boat rental to the Taal Volcano can vary from P800.00 to P900.00 (as of January 2008). If you get approached by touts be firm and do not be swayed by the extras that they may "offer" (e.g. life vest - it is regulations that all boats have them.)

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  • Owner Jeep

    This type of vehicle is very common in Taal and in the Philippines in general. This is actually existing a long time ago in every part of the archipelago. This is built by vehicle manufacturer in the Philippines. If I remember it right, this type of jeep is available only in the country. Jeep like this made of stainless steel is the most expensive...

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  • Tricycle on the Street

    Taal is overcrowded with tricycle. This resulted to heavier traffic on busy streets. Tricycle is a major means of transport in getting around the town. Before boarding, ask how much is the fare. You can also bargain for the fare if you are going to specific tourist destinations.Personally, I do not have problems with tricycle drivers. Most of them...

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Taal Shopping

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  • Enjoy the Local Products

    If you feel like buying the local crafts of Taal, come wander around the public market. There are so much to buy. Taal is noted for Longganisa or Local Sausage, Taal Beef, Suman or Rice Cake, embroidered clothes, and fan-knives. These are their specialties so we can make sure they are done in such a way that you will treasure or like it.Also, find...

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  • Philippine Barong & Saya

    Philippine Barong and Saya (Gown) are very famous in Taal, Batangas. Barong can be worn by either women or men depending on the style. Available for men are dress shirts and for women are gowns with intricate cutwork and crochet insertions. Obviously, most of them are embroidered and handmade. Although nowadays, manufacturers paint them with...

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  • Knives called 'Balisong'

    Batanguenos (local people of Batangas) have a reputation of being brave because of the 'Balisong'. This is a Philippine handmade fan-knife that is supposed to be found and purchased in Batangas and Taal is no exception. Being a former resident of the province, I know for a fact that women carry them in their bags for protection. I know that women...

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Taal Local Customs

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    by cyndymc Written Feb 8, 2009

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    As in other provinces I've been to, locals have a different concept of distance. What may be NEAR for them can be already FAR for us; what could be walking distance for them is actually many blocks away and tiring for us :(

    Specifically in Taal, we were advised to just leave our Fortuner in the Cathedral's Parking lot, as it might be difficult to traverse the narrow roads going to Caysasay. We were told that there was a shortcut anyway that is walking distance only. We realized only later that what locals considered a shortcut and walking distance to the place was actually some blocks away and about 125 steps (I didn't really count, but that's what the security guard told me) locally known as "hagdan-hagdan" down the road.

    The locals can't be blamed though; they are used to the route so perhaps it is very easy for them. Unless you are used to hiking, better take a tricycle going to the Caysasay Church.

    Related to:
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Road Trip

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Taal Warnings and Dangers

  • That is HOT!!!

    When hiking up to the crater of the Taal Volcano, do not check if the sides of the cracks in the ground scattered all over the volcano island are hot. They are! I found that out to my sorrow!I got curious to prove to myself if that small fissure on the ground is really connected to the center of the volcano and if that whitish stain on the ground...

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  • Use a little common sense please!!!!

    If you do decide to walk/hike to the crater of Taal Volcano, please use a little common sense to avoid getting hurt. Here are some points to remember:1. Bring drinking water with you so you can replace what you lost through sweating.2. Dress appropriately. Wear clothes that will vent sweat and let cooling air circulate to cool your body down. 3....

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  • The Boiled Lobster Look

    The weather in Tagaytay can sometimes be deceptive. The air might be cool and the sky overcast. But if you plan to visit the Taal Volcano, I suggest that you apply a lot of sunscreen to avoid getting that so attractive "boiled lobster look". Since you will definitely sweat the lotion off, please do remember to re-apply.

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Taal Tourist Traps

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    by monina_c Updated Jan 27, 2008

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    Do not be fooled by the touts on the Taal Volcano Island who tell you that the trail to the crater is difficult and too long to walk.

    First off, the trail up is only 4-kilometer gradual hike up. Any reasonably healthy/fit person can walk the whole way although the final hundred yards to the crater is steeper than the rest of the trail. The downside to walking is that the trail is dusty and sometimes the soil loose beneath one's feet. So watch where you put your feet.

    Second, if you do decide to ride a horse, the owner of the horses will quote you a prohibitive price for rental of a horse e.g. P700. Do not snap this up (even if you can afford it!) The actual price is way lower than that, say P400, but you can definitely make a better bargain than we did.

    Third, the way down is easier to manage so you can take a look around and get photos that you might not have time for on the way up.

    Unique Suggestions: The trail is full of fissures with hot steam rising from the center of the volcano. You can then experience the thrill of being on top of one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines.

    This fact alone can make you forget all the aggro that the mob of touts subjected you to. :D

    Pushy!
    Related to:
    • Backpacking
    • Road Trip
    • Budget Travel

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Taal Favorites

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  • Fruit Trees and Lots of Bamboo

    Just by driving someone along the Taal streets and roads leading to the town, you will encounter fruit bearing trees like Coconut, Mango, & Banana. You will also find sugar cane plantation and bamboo everywhere. The latter two are abundant in any part of Batangas including Taal.I am posting all the pictures of trees I mentioned above for those who...

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  • How to Make Barong By Hand

    I am posting pictures of local people of Taal who actually do the hand embroidery and bead insertions in a jusi material. Making them by hand is no secret. Stores would let you watch them. Afterall, this kind of business is an art and......needs a lot of patience!When you visit Taal, take a look, they will show you how 'easy' it is to finish a men...

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Explore Deeper into Taal
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Jeepney on the Road
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