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Traveling is arguably one of the most preferred methods in relieving stress; the desire to step out of our busy work schedules and go on a short trip to escape for a while is seemingly becoming a trend nowadays. Given the tiniest bit of time, we revelers would grab every opportunity for a quick getaway.

Thankfully, Manila is surrounded by provinces that have so much to offer. May it be planned or spontaneous, day trips do not always mean spending too much. There are cheap destinations near Manila that can ease your stress away without going below your maintaining balance. Here are 7 day trip suggestions under P1000 for your stress-busting escapade. Ready?

Pililla Wind Farm and Pinto Art Museum in Rizal

You don’t have to go all the way to Ilocos if you want to see these huge wind turbines. Rizal has its wind farm, though the ones in Bangui are much taller. The visit to Pililla Wind Farm won’t take much of your time, giving you a window to visit the quirky Pinto Art Museum, where you can spend most of your time (3-5 hours). Operation hours is 9am to 6pm, Tuesday to Sunday.

How To Get There:

Manila to Pililla Wind Farm:

  1. From either Starmall in Mandaluyong or Araneta Center in Cubao, take a van or FX going to Tanay Public Market (P70, 1.5hr).
  2. From Tanay Public Market, there’s a tricycle terminal. Hire a tricycle to Pililla Wind Farm. They usually charge P300 (round trip). (Better if you can share the ride with a group or friends to cut the cost.)

Pililla Wind Farm to Pinto Art Museum:

  1. Take the same tricycle going back to Tanay market. Take jeepney going to Ynares Center in Antipolo (P37-40, 1hr).
  2. From Ynares Center, take tricycle to Pinto Art Museum (P10, one way).

Expense Breakdown:

  • Transportation – P370 (Manila – Pililla) + P50 (Pililla – Pinto) + P60 (Pinto – Manila) = P480
  • Pinto Art Museum Entrance Fee – P200
  • Meals – P250
  • TOTAL – P930

*If you have travel companions, you can still lower the cost by dividing the Pililla Wind Farm round trip tricycle fare. Also, it’s much better and cheaper if you have your own ride so you would only need to split gas expenses.

Mt. Daraitan and Tinipak River in Rizal

The most popular combination trip in Rizal for nature lovers is the Mt. Daraitan – Tinipak River day trip. But keep in mind that the people in charge of the hiking activity in Daraitan only allow 300 people on the summit per day. Sometimes, as early as 8am, the management will close the registration for the Daraitan hike because it has already reached its 300-people quota. Others would opt to trek to Tinipak River instead and explore the nearby Maytuntong Cave, commonly known as Tinipak Cave. Be there early if you really want to hike Mt. Daraitan.

How to Get There:

  1. From either Starmall in Mandaluyong or Araneta Center in Cubao, take a van or FX going to Tanay (P70, 1.5hr). Get off at Jollibee Tanay.
  2. Hire a tricycle going to Mt. Daraitan registration center in Barangay Daraitan (P500/6 pax, one way, 30 mins).

Expense Breakdown:

  • Transportation – P170 x 2 = P360 (RT)
  • Registration Fee – P20
  • Guide Fee – P750/5-10 pax
  • Tinipak River Fee – P20
  • Meals – P250
  • TOTAL – P800

*For the computation, guide fee was divided by 5 (P150/head), as well as the tricycle fare going to Daraitan (P100/head). So we strongly recommend that you form or join a group of five to reduce costs.

Malabrigo Beach, Batangas

Nestled at the southernmost tip of Batangas, Malabrigo Beach, sometimes referred to as Malabrigo Point, offers a different kind of beach experience. While most of the beaches in the Philippines boast fine sand, Malabrigo Beach differs with smooth pebbles carpeting a great stretch of its shoreline. Not far away from the beach is the renovated Malabrigo Lighthouse.

Malabrigo Beach

How to Get There:

  1. From Manila, take the bus bound for Batangas City, then get off at Diversion or Balagtas (P150).
  2. Ride a jeepney or trike going to SM Batangas (P8). Advise the driver to drop you off at the jeepney terminal bound for Lobo.
  3. Take another jeepney to Lobo (P55). From Lobo town proper, take a tricycle to Malabrigo Beach (P35).

*If you are pressed for time, you can also hire the tricycle for P150 (one way).

Expense Breakdown:

  • Transportation – P248 x 2 = P496 (RT)
  • Punta Malabrigo Resort Entrance Fee – P100/person
  • Meals – P250
  • Total – 846

*Note that aside from Punta Malabrigo Resort, you may access the beach through other entry points with no fee at all.

Masasa Beach, Batangas

Located in the island municipality of Tingloy in Batangas, Masasa Beach is starting to tickle the curiosity of weekend warriors. Its proximity to Anilao makes snorkeling one of the activities you can enjoy aside from swimming and camping. You can also do a little trek on a nearby hill and appreciate the view when you reach the top. Other nearby attractions include Sepoc Island, Sombrero Island, and Mt. Gulugod Baboy.

How to Get There:

  1. From Manila, take a bus bound for Batangas Grand Terminal (P130-165, 2-3hrs).
  2. From Batangas Grand Terminal, ride a jeepney going to Anilao Port or Talaga Port (P37, 40mins).
  3. From the port, board a passenger/public boat bound for Tingloy Port (P80, 45mins – 1hr).
  4. From Tingloy Port, take a tricycle to Masasa Beach (P30).

*If you are pressed for time, you can also rent a private boat if you are a big group for P4500/10 pax. Last trip of public boat back to mainland is 2:30pm.

Expense Breakdown:

  • Transportation – P312 x 2 = P624 (RT)
  • Environmental Fee – P30/person
  • Meals – P250
  • TOTAL – 904

*For the computation, we used the highest cost for bus fare from Manila to Batangas, which is from Cubao. If you’re coming from Buendia or Alabang, it’s a bit lower.


Hulugan Falls, Laguna

Just recently, Hulugan Falls has been gaining a lot of attention, resulting in a steady increase of tourists in the municipality of Luisiana. Aside from Hulugan Falls, you can actually visit 2 more nearby falls – Talay Falls and Hidden Falls.

How to Get There:

  1. From Manila, board a bus bound for Sta. Cruz, Laguna (P140, 2-3hrs).
  2. From Sta. Cruz, ride a jeepney going to Lucban or Lucena. Ask the driver to drop you off at San Salvador. Fare is P30.
  3. From San Salvador, there’s an Information Desk at a waiting shed where you will be assigned a tour guide who will bring you to the Captain’s House for registration.
  4. Ride a trike to Hulugan Falls jumping-off point (P10/person).

Budget Breakdown:

  • Transportation – P180 x 2 = P360 (RT)
  • Hulugan Falls Tourism Fee – P20
  • Hulugan Falls Guide Fee – P150 (P600/4 pax, Hulugan + Talay Falls + Hidden Falls); P75 (P300/4 pax, Hulugan Falls only)
  • Meals – P250
  • TOTAL – P780

*For the computation, we used the guide fee which includes 3 falls and divided it by 4 (P150/head).


Magdapio Falls, Laguna (aka Cavinti Falls, Pagsanjan Falls)

Laguna is laden with natural tourist gems — mountains, hot springs, lakes, and falls. One of the classic attractions is Magdapio Falls. Doesn’t ring a bell? Magdapio Falls is also known by other names, Pagsanjan Falls being the most popular. But Cavinti Falls is also used.

You can reach the waterfall in two ways: by shooting the rapids from Pagsanjan or by trekking from Pueblo El Salvador Nature Park in Cavinti. (Boat tours are also offered from Cavinti, though, but we haven’t tried it from Cavinti.)

The details below are for those who choose to access from Pueblo El Salvador in Cavinti.

Cavinti Falls is also known as Pagsanjan Falls

How to Get There:

  1. From Manila, board a bus bound for Sta. Cruz, Laguna (P140, 2-3hrs).
  2. From Sta. Cruz, ride a jeepney going to Lucban or Lucena. Ask the driver to drop you off at Cavinti. Fare is P27.
  3. From Cavinti, hire a tricycle going to Pueblo El Salvador Nature Park (P60). This is the jumping-off point to the falls.

*There are two options to get to Cavinti Falls: shoot the rapids or trek. Trekking is the cheaper option.

Budget Breakdown:

  • Transportation – P227 x 2 = P454 (RT)
  • Cavinti Falls Fee – P270 (Inclusive of bamboo raft ride to the Devil’s Cave, guide, rappelling gear, life vest)
  • Food – P150
  • Tip – P100
  • TOTAL – P974

Read more: 4 WATERFALLS IN 1 DAY

Taal Volcano, Batangas

UPDATE: The Taal Volcano has been closed to the public.

If you love admiring it from afar, you’re gonna love it even more when you’re actually on the volcano. It only takes two to three hours to get to the jump off point in Talisay, Batangas. From there, you can rent a small boat to take you to the volcano island. Prep for a rigorous trek because its slopes, while not as steep, can still drain all your energy especially when the sun is harsh.

Although it entails multiple transportation modes, getting to the jump-off point by public transpo is easy. But if you really want to save a bit, it’s best to have your own ride so you can just split the gas cost.

The safest way to get to the volcano is via Taal Lake Yacht Club. They charge P2400 per boat, maximum of 5 pax. That price only applies if you have prior arrangement. For walk-ins, it’s P3300.

How to Get There:

  1. From Manila, take the bus to Batangas and get off at Tanauan City Proper. Fare is less than P100.
  2. Take a tricycle to the where the jeepneys going to Sampaloc. Fare is only P50 per tricycle.
  3. Ride a jeepney to Sampaloc and get off in front of Taal Lake Yacht Club. Fare: 20. It’s on your right side. You can also take a jeepney at Tanauan City to Talisay Town Proper.

An alternative way is to ride the jeepney (terminal beside McDo Tanauan) to Talisay proper, and then take a tricycle to TLYC.

Budget Breakdown:

This assumes you’re a group of five travelers.

  • Manila to Tanauan Bus (P100 x 2) – P200
  • Jeepney (P20 x 2): P40
  • Tricycle (P100/2): P50
  • Boat Tour (P2400/5): P480
  • Tourism Tax: P100
  • Boat Landing Fee: P50
  • TOTAL: P920

2️⃣0️⃣1️⃣7️⃣ • 8️⃣ • 1️⃣7️⃣

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Vidyut Rautela

Well researched tips! Looking forward to more of such posts on The Philippines as I am planning a trip soon.

Flor D

We have been to MALABRIGO Beach and Masasa Beach last summer of 2016. It was a nice experience. I love Malabrigo with its pebbled beach. The water is so clean and very clear, and the place itself is so serene. . Unfortunately, we only got a day and night to stay because we have to go to other places in our itinerary. I would love to go back again and stay for a 3 days to a week to really relax in their hammock and swim in the beach. :)