I have always longed to explore the heart of Rizal province. But those plans in the past either did not push through or was cancelled altogether. Blame it on my changing work schedule. But God truly listens what’s in my heart when another opportunity came up and I was invited to be a part of #ByahengRizal courtesy of Luljetta’s Hanging Gardens and Spa on the fourth weekend of July. Unfortunately, due to work commitments, I missed the first part of this three-day weekend so I made the most of our last days at the resort.
It was already almost midnight when I arrived at the property. Since it was my first time going to this part of the country, I armed myself with sufficient information. It was raining that night and though the van I was in was full, I still couldn’t help imagining worse things that could happen to me. While waiting to arrive at my destination, I constantly looked at that blue dot moving across the online map and estimated what time I was supposed to arrive. I guess if it weren’t for the rain and the always present traffic jam all over the metro, I could’ve still seen my friends awake. So after almost two hours, my phone suddenly rang and saw a familiar name on the screen. I answered quickly, both feeling gratitude and relief that someone was still thinking of my whereabouts even during that late hour. I greeted my friend Rem at the gate who was armed with an umbrella. I was already tired and the sleeping surroundings made me want to see where I will be tucking in myself that night.
While at work earlier that Saturday, I was constantly monitoring where my blogger friends were. They had a full day when they visited a lot of sites I was not familiar with. The team behind this Antipolo Media Tour, led by Mr. Ramon Mascariñas, brought them to Boso Boso Church, Boso Boso Highlands Resort & Hotel, Secret Garden of Doris, Casa Nieves, Kampai Sushi Bar & Costa Coffee, Callospa before they finally checked-into Luljetta’s Place Garden Suites. Their enganging social media posts were enough to convince me to look forward for the trip even though I have missed the first half of it.
The next day, I woke up early and proceeded to the dining area as I waited for the rest of the team to arrive. As my still sleepy friends emerged from their dens one by one, I was happy to see mostly new faces and had a nice time knowing new ones. We took our breakfast altogether before proceeding to the first activity of the day which was to be spent in Camp Tipolo.
Loreland Farm Resort
While my friends and I stayed at Luljett’as Garden Suites, we were still given ample time to have a quick resort trip at the adjacent Loreland Farm Resort before going to Camp Tipolo. Once we have fully explored the resort grounds, I quickly thought that this was a good place for large family outings and intimate gatherings. The many swimming pools will also surely attract the young generation and a day tour might not seem enough. While other resorts are boxed in concrete buildings, having a vacation here would surely feel rejuvenating as nature overpowers man made structures. For me, I think that’s one of the resort’s advantages. It can double as a quick weekend getaway and a natural refuge too.
The resort’s number one attraction is its many swimming pools. Though I was unable to swim in any of Loreland’s inviting pools, I noticed that it was more than enough to accommodate large number of guests specially during peak periods. There were lots of shaded huts and rooms to rent too.
Camp Tipolo Adventureland
It was drizzling a bit after breakfast so the whole team sat in a covered area for a few minutes and had games which doubled as a rest time and bonding time too. After which, we split in two groups as others opted to ride the van going to the site. I joined the group who chose to trek down the side of the hill towards Camp Tipolo Adventureland. We trekked for about 15 to 20 minutes if I am not mistaken. The trek down the side of the mountain was not that hard but if you are not used to the outdoors, it can feel grueling at some areas.
However, due to lack of time, we only got to try two activities. Doing the Tarzan Jump elicited super fun times and endless laughter. If you don’t have any idea how to do this, watch the sample video below.
Camp Tipolo offers a variety of activities specially suited for group or team building activities. These include (Lagoon Area) Tight Rope, Balancing Log, Tarzan Jump, Mud Crawl, (Low Ropes Course) Tight Rope, Monkey Bars, Spider Web, (Low Ropes Extreme) Bossom Bridge, U-Bridge and Mud Slide.
When my friends and I visited Camp Tipolo Adventureland in Antipolo, Rizal, we were given ample time to try a couple of their activities. One of the more adrenaline-rushing activities was the Tarzan Jump wherein one must reach the other side without dropping off to the man-made lagoon below. Here, my good friend @marxtermind shows us how it is done! How about you? Have you tried the Tarzan Jump? 🙂 How was it? #camptipoloadventureland #byahengrizal #TayoNaSaAntipolo #themermaidtravels @luljettas
Luljetta’s Hanging Gardens and Spa
The main hightlight of our stay was the lovely Luljetta’s Hanging Gardens and Spa. I was still a bit sad upon missing the first day of the trip but seeing the gardens made me forget the feeling of regret. After all, I could no longer do anything about it.
If there was one thing I liked during that weekend, it would be the time spent with my friend fishes. 😀 Luljetta’s have a number of fish spas and shallow pools perfect for relaxation. There are also spa lounges which was perfect to cap off a long and eventful day. Since the gardens were beautifully surrounded by greens, it made our stay much more soothing to the senses. Truly, being one with nature tops all leisure activities.
Of course, everyone’s favorite activity will not go unnoticed. We were served Antipolo’s signature suman which is best paired with a hot cup of coffee. If you are not a coffee-drinker, you can try tea to go with it. It was quite a filling snack but it was perfect for us after all the laughing and swimming we did that afternoon. I think we all had a second round of this yummy treat. (Thanks Ramon!)
Antipolo’s best not so kept secret anymore! Antipolo’s suman. Quickly fried. Topped with cracked cashew nuts, sweet mango strips and Luljetta’s very own sauce made from a specially guarded recipe. This is best served with chilled tea or Luljetta’s winsor coffee. A quite filling snack perfect after swimming or relaxing at the hanging gardens. 😋 Don’t forget to try this when visiting this lovely property. @luljettas #byahengrizal #tayonasaantipolo #themermaidtravels
We did not have any activities to do in our last day at the resort. But Ramon (one of the owners) had a little surprise that afternoon. Before we parted ways, he brought us to Hinulugang Taktak. That epic falls I have only heard of in a folk song I used to sing in my childhood. I was ecstatic because I can now proudly say I have seen it in person. 😀
I used to delay visiting Rizal province because of its proximity to my home in Laguna. However, having partially explored it, I can say that it is truly gifted and its cultural heritage can rival those of the oldest provinces in the country. I wish to go back to see more of it. But since it’s less than two hours away, I can see it happening sooner rather than later.