Looking for a one-day road trip and activity? Go for Tanay, Rizal. Being near from NCR, this high altitude town offers breathtaking destinations and activities that would surely feed your adventurous souls. Winding mountain roads and pine trees are my favorite sceneries as we traverse the roads leading to different destinations. My heartfelt thanks to Sir Jeff Pino of Tanay Tourism Office for organizing this familiarization tour. Despite the Southwest Monsoon, we are blessed to have a fine weather on the day itself.
How to commute to Tanay?
There are jeepneys and FX from Cubao and Starmall going to Tanay. From there, you can charter a tricycle to bring you to your destination of choice.
What to explore in Tanay in a day?
San Ildefonso de Toledo Parish Church – one of the oldest churches in the Philippines and its beautiful facade is picture-perfect. It also has one of the intricate retablo I have seen in my travel history.
Declared last 2001 as a National Cultural Treasure Church by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, it is one of the sites to see in Tanay. Other pilgrimage sites to see in Tanay is the Regina Rica, one of the crowd drawer site in Tanay.
Daranak Falls – this iconic waterfalls of Tanay is one of the picture-perfect destinations of the town. It is a developed nature park that can cater from youngsters to our senior tourists who want to experience Mother Nature’s beauty. From developed road networks, erected huts, available stores, and multilevel function halls, this spot would engage your entire barkada or family. The main cascade of the waterfalls is a sheer drop of 14 meters to a deep icy cold catchbasin for bathing. If not swimmer, best to don lifevest. There are footbridges that connect both sides of the park.
How to go to Daranak Falls?
From Cubao: take Cogeo bound jeep or van. Take another Sampaloc bound jeep. Once on Sampaloc Market, charter PATODA tricycle to Daranak Falls. Php200 with maximum of 4 passengers.
From Starmall: Take jeepney or FX to Tanay. Once in Tanay market, charter PATODA tricycle to Daranak Falls.
Calinawan Cave – a historic cave with a developed surrounding ready for the influx of visitors. Prior to actual spelunking, visitors must register on the adjacent hall and attend a short briefing about rules and regulations for safety. Also, pay the registration fee and choose a snug-fitting helmet.
Its main cave entrance is situated a few steps from the road and features a descending footpath. The cave system has seven explorable levels. However, during rainy season, the lowest 3 levels could be inundated and unsafe for spelunking. We were given the opportunity to experience the first two levels.
The first level has some illumination from a naturally occurring orifice. There are natural rock formations depicting a human face and a knelt person.
At the second level, the trail leads to a low ceiling chamber requiring explorers to kneel or duck walk to another end. There is also a phallic rock formation at this level. The exit trail features an ascending rocky and slippery trail leading to a high ceiling exit. This where explorers usually take a good photo thanks to beautiful natural diffused natural lighting. From the cave exit, it takes less than 5 minute walk back to the registration area.
The historical significance of the Calinawan Cave dates back from during World War 2, when the Japanese forces used the cave as a camp for two months before their actual surrender. The cave was discovered last 1572 without an identifiable person in record. However, the year 1901 when Mr. Felipe Matalino rediscovered the cave system. It is said that the seven-level or layer ends up in Wawa Dam in Montalban. However, this exit is bombed, apparently for protection. The etymology of “Calinawan” was derived from “an agreement of Filipino and American forces made clear to fight the Spaniards”.
Nagpatong Rock – located in Barangay Cuyambay, Nagpatong Rock is actually a side trip to Mt. Masungki. It features two towers of colossal rocks seemingly and perfectly stacked on top of each other, thanks to its naturally occurring horizontal dents lining the main rock tower. From the jump-off point, the average trekking time is about two to three hours, depending on personal pace. The trail starts with a dirt road under a canopy of trees. From there, you will pass by rice plantations and through a thick forest. There are portions of the trail that are concreted. The ascending part of the trail features an established rocky footpath with steep inclines.
Where to Eat in Tanay?
Rambulls Fastfood and Restaurant – a “bakahan” restaurant that is conveniently located beside the main road. I have eaten already here before and loved its bulalo! Another feature of this restaurant is a saddle placed in the middle of dining where you can take a photograph.
For inquiries, please contact the restaurant through mobile number +63 920 214 6434
Pico de Pino Restaurant – this is where we have light snacks after our Nagpatong rock adventure. It is conveniently located along Marikina-Infanta highway and has local products for pasalubong. Their menu ranges from breakfast meals, main meat dishes to snacks. Price ranges from a hundred til Php500.00.
For inquiries and reservation, you can contact Pico de Pino Cafe and Restaurant through mobile number +63 921 930 6033
My heartfelt thanks to Sir Jeff Pino, Tourism Officer for organizing this familiarization tour.
More photographs during the familiarization tour.