Lakbay Norte 6: Finding Your North – Nueva Ecija in 48 hours

In orienteering basics, you have to find your north on the compass which will always point to the Magnetic North. This helps you navigate through unfamiliar places.

I have never been to the northernmost part of Luzon. Recently, I ventured on a 5-day road trip to explore and get that ‘northern exposure’ of the best destinations in Nueva Ecija and Cagayan.


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Below is the first part of that 120-hour road trip in snippets for Nueva Ecija.

How to Get There: Travel time is approximately 3 hours thanks to the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX)

Gas Up
Gas Up @ Petron Km 23 North Bound NLEX – our ride for 5 days, thanks to Victory Liner

Accommodations:

Attractions: A myriad of activities abound in the rice granary of Luzon:

  1. Minalungao National Park – in Brgy Pias, General Tinio. This is a great venue for moving about. There are huts and floating cottages as respite after you’re done sightseeing.

    Minalungao National Park
    Minalungao National Park (c) Martin San Diego courtesy of NPVB
  2. PMP Paradise Farm – still in General Tinio, this farm, sanctuary and soon to be nature theme park is a behemoth at 250 hectare. You can have close interaction with farm animals while enjoying the scenery in this man-made marvel.
    Down the scenic path we go!  
    Down the scenic path we go!

    PMP 2
    (c) Martin San Diego courtesy of NPVB
  3. NFA Grains Industry Museum – in Maharlika Highway, Cabanatuan City. This is an homage to the staple grain of the Filipino household. It houses brilliant artifacts and art installations displaying our people’s romance with rice.
    Museum ingress 
    Museum ingress

    Amorsolo’s Harvest Time Scene diorama
    Amorsolo’s Harvest Time Scene diorama
  4. Crystal Waves Hotel & Resort – in Dinarayat, Talavera. This resort has sprawling open spaces great for functions. It also boasts of huge waterslides, pools, zip line and wall climbing facilities.

    Crystal
    (c) Martin San Diego courtesy of NPVB
  5. PhilRice Research Institute – located in the Science city of Munoz. It showcases the Future Rice Farm which will make you see farming in a whole new light.
    PhilRice Research Institute
    PhilRice Research Institute

    Lakbay Norte 6 - PhilRice Research Institute
    (c) Martin San Diego courtesy of NPVB
  6. Central Luzon State University (CLSU) – just 24 minutes away from PhilRice is this model agro-tourism site for Luzon. This means their museum, small ruminant center and hydrophonics tours are testament to the scientific and technological advancement in Agriculture this place has spawned. Best of all, it’s where you can try the world-renowned Tilapia flavored ice cream.

    Central Luzon State University
    Central Luzon State University photo by Martin San Diego courtesy of NPVB

After 48 hours, I can say I have found Nueva Ecija and called it mine — Mine to come back to and explore some more! Hope to see you there soon. Up next, Cagayan!

Hats off and gratitude to the North Philippines Visitors Bureau (NPVB) for having me in Lakbay Norte 6.

Lakbay Norte 6 was made possible in partnership with Manila North Tollways Corporation / NLEX-SCTEX, Victory Liner, Inc., Nueva Ecija Convention and Visitors Associations (NECVA) and Cagayan North Convention and Visitors Bureau (CNCVB).

Sponsored by: Department of Tourism – Region 2, Department of Tourism – Region 3, Province of Nueva Ecija, Province of Cagayan North, Petron Corporation, Jollibee Foods Corporation and Prifood Corporation.

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