Sunday, November 20, 2011

Fun in BALER, Aurora

I have been hearing about Baler from a lot of my friends, most especially the surfer dudes. But I have not really though about going to that place anytime soon. But last long weekend, Nov.5-7, my friends who have planned a trip to Baler invited me to come with them. However, I didn't promise and I was totally undecided 'coz I really wanted to rest that weekend plus it's my grandma's birthday on the 7th.

Spent the day with the same group, and my thoughts of not joining them was overpowered by the calling for a break! Just realized I got too stressed at work and would really deserve a break. So that Saturday night (Nov. 5), we left Manila at 10:30pm and headed North. We're not really able to sleep along the way because we're too tight inside the car. We made all 6 of us fit a Toyota Vios haha!

It was really a tough journey going to Baler! The roads had no lights, and there were a lot of rough roads in between cemented roads. And unfortunately, it's raining quite hard on our way there. The worst part, we needed to go down the car every time there's an uphill rough road or high humps. We got wet and really felt cold. There were also a lot of landslides that sort of blocked the way. It took us 6.5 hours to get to Baler.

DAY 1

When we got there at around 5:30am, it was raining really hard. And since it's a beach front, there were really strong winds. Worst part, we didn't have any reservations to any hotel. All of the hotels were fully booked that time. We also got rejected in Bayler-view Hotel where we stayed for a couple of minutes to figure things out. But while my friends were resting inside the car, I went to Bahia de Baler to check if my friend who's staying there that time was able to reserve a room for us. Unfortunately, we were not booked. Come 6am, a group of surfers came to check-in. They were able to book two rooms. Luckily, they won't be using the other room, and that room was automatically given to me! So cool!:)

I called my friends up and we headed to the room. It was an economy room worth Php 1,200.00 per night, which has three beds. We made ourselves fit the beds (2 persons per bed) and took a nap before hitting the beach.

We were so tired that we woke up in time for lunch. We had lunch at Bay's Inn. Then came my friend Paula who's working for Senator Angara. She invited us to the Senator's private cove which was a 15-minute ride away. While my other friends chose to stay there and surf, I went with Paula to meet Senator and to swim and tour around his private cove in Dika. We rode a coaster then a van.

I saw such a breath-taking view of the cove! It got really clear water and an off-white sand, very far from the dark gray (almost black) sand and muddy beach in the surf area where we came from. I was able to meet Sen. Angara and had a little talk about the people we both know. He also toured us in the Artists' Village which was still under construction. After that, I was accompanied by Paula at the beach.



Sen. Angara showing us the Artists' Village

pardon my fatness...was just trying to show the lighthouse under construction :))

i seem like a castaway

After some photo ops on the huge rocks,I did a bit of swimming in the sea. Then after that quick swim, I headed to the stream which was leading to the sea. The water was very clear and cold. I dipped myself there so to avoid itching from salt water. Then we went back to the hut where other guests of Senator were staying. After some chitchats, we finally rode the van which took us to the coaster; and we rode the coaster going back to the hotel.



stream leading to the sea

that's where I swam!

After taking a shower, we headed to the Bar & Grill of Bahia de Baler. We were introduced to its manager, who's a surfer girl who recently won in the beginner's category. My classmates from graduate school who were also in Baler at that time, came to the same place for dinner. Paula had a "raisin-flavored lambanog" plus pulutan treat! The boys even had Red Horse after the lambanog, which got their worlds turning around. haha! In fact, some of them threw up secretly! It was such a fun night!



grad school classmates


DAY 2

And because we had a lot of alcohol the previous night, we woke up late. We had tapsilog worth Php 100 for brunch in Bayler-view. Super worth it. The meal even included coffee!:)  After brunch, I finally decided to learn how to surf. I got an instructor worth Php 300 for an hour. He taught me the basics for 5 minutes, and we spent the rest of the time in the water. the instructor took me quite far from the shore, but the water was still low on that spot. As we were on our way there, the coming waves hit my face every now and then, and those quick waves almost got me falling off the soft board.

So what happens is: my instructor pushes me to somewhere quite far from the shore as we go against the coming waves, then we wait for the right wave (just right speed and force), he turns me and my board around facing the shore, and when he says "ready", I position myself (hands pushed down against the board), and finally when he says, "tayo!", I push myself up and try to balance myself on the board while riding the wave! So fun! Unfortunately, not all rides were successful for me. In fact, I fell off the board in most of them. But I was so proud of myself when I was able to balance on the board while riding a wave with a long duration before reaching the shore. But I think I was able to do it twice or thrice only haha! It was so hard! It's very time consuming also to get to the right spot from the shore, and to wait for the appropriate wave. too bad, I left my camera's battery in the hotel room that's why I never had a photo while riding a wave. That would probably suggest that there's definitely a next time! Can't wait to be back in Baler and master those surfing skills haha!


Surf's Up!!!



Anyway, after surfing, we had snacks (light late lunch) in Bay's Inn resto while we were playing Monopoly Deal. There we saw a couple of friends from Manila. Super small world!:) After that, we took a shower, cleaned up the room a bit, and played Monopoly Deal while waiting for our friends whom we asked to convoy with us. After some photo ops, we finally left the hotel at around 3:30pm. I rode with my other friends who brought a bigger ride so the Vios wouldn't suffer that much anymore.


Bay's Inn Resto

Bahia de Baler



playing Monopoly Deal


We were trapped for awhile along the way as a bus got stuck in a one-way bridge. But luckily it was pulled away by another bus. After a couple of hours, we finally got to NLEX where we had dinner. Other friends went ahead so I went back to the Vios. We're back in Manila before 9pm!:)

good vibes only

since the bridge has so many humps, they had to go down the Vios :))

nice view of the Canili Dam


It was such a fun and really affordable trip. My total spending: Php 1,500.00. All worth it! plus thanks to my friend Paula who treated us for drinks and pica-pica, and who was able to connect us to people who were able to give us discounts and other free services. It's really nice to be friendly!;) 'Til the next surf trip in Baler!

1 comment:

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Fun in BALER, Aurora

I have been hearing about Baler from a lot of my friends, most especially the surfer dudes. But I have not really though about going to that place anytime soon. But last long weekend, Nov.5-7, my friends who have planned a trip to Baler invited me to come with them. However, I didn't promise and I was totally undecided 'coz I really wanted to rest that weekend plus it's my grandma's birthday on the 7th.

Spent the day with the same group, and my thoughts of not joining them was overpowered by the calling for a break! Just realized I got too stressed at work and would really deserve a break. So that Saturday night (Nov. 5), we left Manila at 10:30pm and headed North. We're not really able to sleep along the way because we're too tight inside the car. We made all 6 of us fit a Toyota Vios haha!

It was really a tough journey going to Baler! The roads had no lights, and there were a lot of rough roads in between cemented roads. And unfortunately, it's raining quite hard on our way there. The worst part, we needed to go down the car every time there's an uphill rough road or high humps. We got wet and really felt cold. There were also a lot of landslides that sort of blocked the way. It took us 6.5 hours to get to Baler.

DAY 1

When we got there at around 5:30am, it was raining really hard. And since it's a beach front, there were really strong winds. Worst part, we didn't have any reservations to any hotel. All of the hotels were fully booked that time. We also got rejected in Bayler-view Hotel where we stayed for a couple of minutes to figure things out. But while my friends were resting inside the car, I went to Bahia de Baler to check if my friend who's staying there that time was able to reserve a room for us. Unfortunately, we were not booked. Come 6am, a group of surfers came to check-in. They were able to book two rooms. Luckily, they won't be using the other room, and that room was automatically given to me! So cool!:)

I called my friends up and we headed to the room. It was an economy room worth Php 1,200.00 per night, which has three beds. We made ourselves fit the beds (2 persons per bed) and took a nap before hitting the beach.

We were so tired that we woke up in time for lunch. We had lunch at Bay's Inn. Then came my friend Paula who's working for Senator Angara. She invited us to the Senator's private cove which was a 15-minute ride away. While my other friends chose to stay there and surf, I went with Paula to meet Senator and to swim and tour around his private cove in Dika. We rode a coaster then a van.

I saw such a breath-taking view of the cove! It got really clear water and an off-white sand, very far from the dark gray (almost black) sand and muddy beach in the surf area where we came from. I was able to meet Sen. Angara and had a little talk about the people we both know. He also toured us in the Artists' Village which was still under construction. After that, I was accompanied by Paula at the beach.



Sen. Angara showing us the Artists' Village

pardon my fatness...was just trying to show the lighthouse under construction :))

i seem like a castaway

After some photo ops on the huge rocks,I did a bit of swimming in the sea. Then after that quick swim, I headed to the stream which was leading to the sea. The water was very clear and cold. I dipped myself there so to avoid itching from salt water. Then we went back to the hut where other guests of Senator were staying. After some chitchats, we finally rode the van which took us to the coaster; and we rode the coaster going back to the hotel.



stream leading to the sea

that's where I swam!

After taking a shower, we headed to the Bar & Grill of Bahia de Baler. We were introduced to its manager, who's a surfer girl who recently won in the beginner's category. My classmates from graduate school who were also in Baler at that time, came to the same place for dinner. Paula had a "raisin-flavored lambanog" plus pulutan treat! The boys even had Red Horse after the lambanog, which got their worlds turning around. haha! In fact, some of them threw up secretly! It was such a fun night!



grad school classmates


DAY 2

And because we had a lot of alcohol the previous night, we woke up late. We had tapsilog worth Php 100 for brunch in Bayler-view. Super worth it. The meal even included coffee!:)  After brunch, I finally decided to learn how to surf. I got an instructor worth Php 300 for an hour. He taught me the basics for 5 minutes, and we spent the rest of the time in the water. the instructor took me quite far from the shore, but the water was still low on that spot. As we were on our way there, the coming waves hit my face every now and then, and those quick waves almost got me falling off the soft board.

So what happens is: my instructor pushes me to somewhere quite far from the shore as we go against the coming waves, then we wait for the right wave (just right speed and force), he turns me and my board around facing the shore, and when he says "ready", I position myself (hands pushed down against the board), and finally when he says, "tayo!", I push myself up and try to balance myself on the board while riding the wave! So fun! Unfortunately, not all rides were successful for me. In fact, I fell off the board in most of them. But I was so proud of myself when I was able to balance on the board while riding a wave with a long duration before reaching the shore. But I think I was able to do it twice or thrice only haha! It was so hard! It's very time consuming also to get to the right spot from the shore, and to wait for the appropriate wave. too bad, I left my camera's battery in the hotel room that's why I never had a photo while riding a wave. That would probably suggest that there's definitely a next time! Can't wait to be back in Baler and master those surfing skills haha!


Surf's Up!!!



Anyway, after surfing, we had snacks (light late lunch) in Bay's Inn resto while we were playing Monopoly Deal. There we saw a couple of friends from Manila. Super small world!:) After that, we took a shower, cleaned up the room a bit, and played Monopoly Deal while waiting for our friends whom we asked to convoy with us. After some photo ops, we finally left the hotel at around 3:30pm. I rode with my other friends who brought a bigger ride so the Vios wouldn't suffer that much anymore.


Bay's Inn Resto

Bahia de Baler



playing Monopoly Deal


We were trapped for awhile along the way as a bus got stuck in a one-way bridge. But luckily it was pulled away by another bus. After a couple of hours, we finally got to NLEX where we had dinner. Other friends went ahead so I went back to the Vios. We're back in Manila before 9pm!:)

good vibes only

since the bridge has so many humps, they had to go down the Vios :))

nice view of the Canili Dam


It was such a fun and really affordable trip. My total spending: Php 1,500.00. All worth it! plus thanks to my friend Paula who treated us for drinks and pica-pica, and who was able to connect us to people who were able to give us discounts and other free services. It's really nice to be friendly!;) 'Til the next surf trip in Baler!

1 comment: