CALABARZON Travel Guide: Where to go When You Visit the Five Provinces
Calabarzon used to be called Southern Tagalog Mainland in the Philippines and was under Region IV-A. The provinces that make up the cluster are Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon. It’s the most populated region of the country after Metro Manila.
It’s located south of the National Capital Region (NCR). These 5 provinces of Calabarzon are where you can find some of the most stunning natural attractions in the Philippines, including mountains, volcanoes, hot springs, beaches, lakes, and many more.
City dwellers visit these places regularly because of their proximity to Manila, especially during the summer when it’s scorching hot. Everyone just wants to go away for a few days.
Here is a list of the attractions you can visit in the five provinces of Calabarzon.
Emilio Aguinaldo Shrine
This South Luzon province is where the Emilio Aguinaldo Shrine can be found. This is the place where the Philippines declared its independence from Spanish Colonization took place. Both the natural beauty and man-made attractions of Cavite attract tourists.
Corregidor Island can be found in Cavite. It’s located at the entrance of Manila Bay and served as a military bastion. Its ruins can be seen up to this day. History says that this island was where they put coastal artillery to fight the warships trying to enter the Philippines through Manila Bay.
This tour gives an in-depth learning experience for those who wish to know about the history of the Philippines in that area.
This dormant volcano, which stands at 688 m (2,257 ft) above mean sea level, used to be called Pico de Loro because it has a monolith with the shape of a parrot’s beak. Many groups are offering guided tours of the mountain. Both beginners and advanced mountain climbers will enjoy the views of open waters and mountains nearby.
The province of Laguna is most known for being the birthplace of Rizal, but other than that, the place is endowed with several bodies of nature, eco-tourism spots, and health and wellness establishments.
EK is an old favorite, and even if it’s not as popular as before, this theme park makes everyone happy with its numerous rides like Up, Up, and Away which looks like you’re riding a hot air balloon; Xtreme Paintball Philippines and Rio Grande Rapids. The amusement park also has shopping facilities, dining stalls, shows, and entertainment venues.
The town of Paete is mainly visited because of its woodwork, but more than that, you can embark on gastronomic adventures by trying their local puto bumbong. There’s an old church in Paete with the same name that maintained its glory through the years.
The façade is made of complicated stone works, and upon entering, you’ll be greeted with red stone flooring and a dark wooden ceiling. There are several small statues of Saints and a bell tower.
Batangas is known for its beaches, Kapeng Barako, Tablea, balisong, and many more. Verde Island Passage can also be found in Batangas. This is the center of the world’s marine biodiversity.
The water activities of Batangas are also being visited by many tourists around the country. Aside from its natural attractions and products, Batangas wows many with its special version of Bulalo.
Anilao Diving Sites
The nearness of Anilao to Manila makes this beach a go-to for diving enthusiasts. The marine life of Anilao is diverse and really colorful. There are resorts where accredited dive masters are ready to give lectures to willing guests.
Also Read: Best Beach and Dive Resorts in Anilao, Batangas
Taal Heritage Town
Taal’s ancient town is where the well-preserved heritage houses and other establishments of the rich and famous people of a bygone era are located. There’s a park in the town called Taal Park where Basilica de San Martin de Tours stands.
Modern times have paved the way for shops like convenience stores, but this quaint place’s charm remains. You can also go on a walking tour around the area to buy embroidered piña fabrics as pasalubongs.
Also Read: Top 12 Things to do and Places to Visit in Taal, Batangas.
Padre Pio National Shrine
Padre Pio Shrine is famous for having stigmata, which became stir controversy and interest. The shrine in Batangas is built in his honor. Many flocks to the church to offer their thanks and, most of all, to pray for the things they wish for.
Everyone can go to the 14 Stations or hang their handkerchiefs and wish for something they genuinely want. There’s also a tiny shrine of Padre Pio, and visitors can climb the bell tower.
Rizal is a mountainous province in the Philippines located east of Manila. The highest points of Rizal offer a fantastic view of Manila’s business districts and Laguna de Bay at the Southeastern horizon of the province.
Rizal doesn’t have beaches, but the province has waterfalls, caves, and streams of water. Its location is not that far from Manila, so it’s easy to reach but far enough to enjoy peace and quiet.
Daranak falls is already a popular tourist spot in Tanay because of its green waters and lush backdrop. You’ll have to take a hike to reach this special place.
It isn’t a huge waterfall, but its allure comes from the beginning of the hike to the cute rock formations and of course, the stunning falls as the main event.
Pililla Wind Farms
Not as towering as the ones in Bangui, but the windmills of Pililla have their own appeal since it’s standing on top of the hills with a stunning view of Laguna de Bay.
The strong winds of Pililla make it the perfect spot for these wind turbines, which is responsible for about 150 Gigawatt hours of electricity each year.
The farthest province from Manila is also where some of the most amazing beaches, colorful festivals, delicious foods, mountains, churches, and heritage houses can be found. It’s a large province and can be reached from Manila in 4 hours or more.
The yearly festival celebrates Saint Isidore the Laborer, the patron saint of farmers and lover of the poor and animals. The locals put ‘pabitins’ or hang treats outside their houses where members of the parade and other crowds will try to take their pabitins, then the other members of the households will throw leafy foods outside. They celebrate this festival as a way to liberate their souls.
The foods of Quezon are famous for their unique tastes. Lucban longganisa isn’t your typical sweet Filipino sausage; its taste falls on the garlicky and salty side.
Quezon also has its own version of pancit, pancit habhab, a type of Miki noodles cooked with sayote, pork meat, soy sauce, and vinegar. Aside from these two, hardinera, Budin, and yema cake are the foods you should try when you visit.
White sand, turquoise waters, and calm waters that’s the promise of spending a day or two on Cagbalete Island in Mauban Quezon.
It’s a serene place with only a few locals that you can enjoy. You can go swimming, beach bumming, or strolling as much as you can. Some accommodations are available, but it’s still limited.
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