A Hot and Sizzling Getaway: Mount Pinatubo Day Tour

Mt. Pinatubo is one of the world’s most famous volcanoes. When it erupted back in 1991, it was considered the second most intense eruption of the 20th century. In addition to that, the event even caused a sulfuric haze that dropped global temperatures for two years.

The June 12, 1991 eruption column from Mount Pinatubo taken from Clark Air Base
The June 12, 1991 eruption column from Mount Pinatubo taken from Clark Air Base – by U.S. Geological Survey Photograph taken by Richard P. Hoblitt. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons


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These days, Mt. Pinatubo sits peacefully and provides a gorgeous backdrop for anyone who visits. It’s a popular tourist attraction. No further than 3 hours away from Metro Manila, you can explore its natural beauty in one day. Not bad if you don’t have vacation leaves or long weekends coming up.

In this Mt. Pinatubo Travel Guide, we listed complete information on how to get there, other things to do, travel tips and estimated fees.

How to Get There

Private Car / Car Rental

As it’s now a popular tourist spot, plenty of travel companies provide private air-conditioned charter vans that can take you and your friends from Manila to Sta. Juliana.

Public Transportation

You can also take the public bus if you are on a budget. You can either take a Tarlac-bound bus and stop at the Capas Public Market, or buy a ticket with any bus line that has routes to Baguio, Ilocos, or Pangasinan. These will pass by Sta. Juliana in Capas, Tarlac.

From Capas, take a jeepney or a tricycle and ride to Sta. Juliana. From there, you will have to pay the environmental fee at the tourism office and book a 4×4 to take you closer to the mountain. The adventure starts the moment you leave the tourism office!

Crossing the River
Crossing the River

Mount Pinatubo Crater
Mt Pinatubo Crater

4x4 offr oad driving near Mount Pinatubo
4×4 off-road driving near Mount Pinatubo

Pinatubo River Trek by Steel Wool via Flickr
Pinatubo River Trek by Steel Wool via Flickr

What to Do in Mt. Pinatubo

The hour-long ride on a 4×4 jeepney is the only way to get closer to the mountain. It takes a while but it’s a very fun ride. At the other end of Crow Valley is the start of the trekking point. It may take up to 2 hours of walking one way (4 in total) and is a rigorous exercise, but it’s a lot of fun and you’ll be surrounded with nature the entire time.

watch your step
watch your step

The hike may be tiring but all exhaustion will be gone the moment you feast your eyes on the crater’s lake. It is beautiful with clear turquoise waters and surrounding land formations. It’s very exciting to realize that you’re at the crater of a volcano—definitely something to cross off your bucket list!

Adventure Trek with Pinoy Travel Bloggers
Adventure Trek with Pinoy Travel Bloggers

Travel Advisory

Swimming, kayaking, boat ride and staying close to the water is currently not advisable according to Department of Tourism due to the harmful substances found in the lake.

Off Road Adventure
Mount Pinatubo Day Tour Off Road Adventure

Other Things to Do in Capas Tarlac

While the sight of the crater’s lake is enough for many visitors, there are lots more you can do at and around Mt. Pinatubo. You can enjoy a relaxing volcanic ash massage at the Pinatubo Spa or take a dip at nearby Bueno and Dolores Hot Springs.

Exploring Mount Pinatubo - Photo by Ron Gerby
Exploring Mount Pinatubo – Photo by Ron Gerby

For a bit of culture and history, you can also pass by the Capas Shrine and learn more about WW2 heroes that fought for the freedom of our country. There’s also the Museo de Tarlac in Capas and the O’Donnell Catholic Church where you can see for yourself the remnants of Tarlac’s colorful history.

Estimated Mount Pinatubo Day Tour Expenses

  • Manila to Capas Bus Fare (one way) Php 200.00
  • Tricycle rental from Capas to Sta. Juliana Php300.00
  • 4×4 Rental for a maximum of 5 people Php3,500.00
  • Local Guide Fee for a group of five people Php500.00
  • Conservation Fee (individual) Php300.00
  • Shower Room Rental after the trek Php50.00 (look for Alvin’s Place)

*All published rates are subject to change without prior notice. 

Want to experience a 4X4 off-road adventure and a guided hike to Mt. Pinatubo’s magnificent crater lake? You can book seamlessly via Klook.com to see the magnificent views of the largest lahar canyon in the world.

Mt Pinatubo Travel Tips:

  • Always check the weather before planning your Mount Pinatubo Day Tour.
  • Eat a big breakfast that will give you lots of energy. Expect a late lunch at around 1:30 PM during the trip.
  • Do not forget sunscreen and other garments that will protect you from the Philippine summer heat.
  • Wear sturdy and water-resistant shoes. You will be walking across streams and wet patches, even during the summer.
  • Extra clothes
  • Have all your items fit in one small backpack that won’t be difficult to carry as you’re trekking.
  • Bring at least 3 liters of water with you for the trip as well as small snacks like energy bars.

After a long week of working hard, we could all use a getaway. Booking week-long vacations aren’t always practical, nor are they affordable. Fortunately for us, our country offers so many beautiful destinations that are only a few hours away from the Metro. A couple of hours on a bus and you’ll find yourself a world away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Mt Pinatubo Hiking Tour photo by Monggoy via Flickr
Mt Pinatubo Hiking Tour photo by Monggoy via Flickr Photo credit: monggoy via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

Tourism Contact Info
SATELLITE MUNICIPAL TOURISM OFFICE
Brgy. Sta. Juliana, Capas, Tarlac
Ms Mai (0947-3912134)
www.capastourism.com

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Originally Published: Mar 21, 2015
Updated: June 18, 2017

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Hi! I have been working as a flight attendant and like exploring Asia. Click here to find out many interesting facts about Asia, its people and best places to visit. Thank you!

  2. Hi, I am interested in going to Mt. Pinatubo and do the hike. Question is do i need to make reservation ahead of time? Do you they have any group to this hike since i am alone, i thought of just join to other groups so i can save money for the tour guide and the 4by4 jeepney renting.

    Thanks!

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