And finally, the long wait is over! After many attempts, I finally saw Mt. Pinatubo and checked it on my bucket list! Many thanks to Travel Now or Never for arranging and made this trip (and dream) come true. It is definitely worth the wait.
And since this trip was created on Facebook event by Travel Now or Never, we’ve gone with different people whom we are meeting for the first time. And it is one of the many things I looked into, meet new people and listen to their stories. So we started the hike by riding a 4×4 (maximum of 5 people) for about 45mins. But this is one of the nicest parts, there is a spot in the middle of the 4×4 ride wherein they stop and allows you to take photos. It is soooo much fun! You are like in the middle of Mars! (Though I haven’t gone to Mars. Lol) During hiking, you will encounter several Aetas that are willing to have their portraits. Then another 30-45 mins going to the top. It is an easy hike though, so it depends on your pace on how will you reach the top the fastest. And there is nothing to worry if you are a first timer, I am sure you are going to surpass the rocks, sands and few streams. And I have to share that there are old Japanese people who went and hiked that time. I asked, and the oldest one is 70 years old! (GOALS!) And he reached the top! Our guide told us that the oldest hiker is 85 years of age and an Australian. would love to be like them when I reached that age! And reaching the top is all worth it, what more on them right? If they can, you can do more! But here is the thing, when we’ve been here, we experienced drizzling and thought it will be a rainy hike and I felt quite disappointed. But never lose hope! We arrived at the top at 9am, no drizzling anymore but clouds are everywhere on the crater. And I found myself telling, “clouds, clouds go away, let Mt. Pinatubo show it’s beauty.” And after 2hrs of waiting, IT FINALLY SHOWS UP! The color, and the perfection, indeed a beautiful disaster!
And because this trip has been organized by a third party, all you have to do is to bring yourself and enjoy your worry-free trip.
But here are some tips and reminders when you are planning to go Mt. Pinatubo:
- Be on time. Registration starts at 6am. And you and your group must be there before 6am to register. There are waivers you need to sign up as well.
- Get that bamboo stick! Many Aeta kids are selling it to the jump-off. And it really helps, not just for you but also to them.
- Apply sunblock. The majority of the 4×4 does not have cover at the back (where in case you will ride.) The sun is up, and you might not want to risk yourself having a sunburn. (Ouch.)
- Water and Trail food. Have enough water. Normally, 1-2L of water is enough, depending on your needs. Trail foods usually have sugar. It gives you energy!
- Extra clothes and towels. After hiking, I am sure you really want to wash up. At the jump-off area, there are several CRs where you can wash for only 50 pesos.
- Wear comfortable hiking shoes or sandals. The trail has few streams, so wear a pair of shoes that are easy to dry.
- Bring camera.Of course, your trip wouldn’t be complete without having or taking photos of this kind of creation.
- Extra money. Even though we have organizers, you might want to drink and eat something you like after the hike. And of course for the souvenirs!
- Enjoy! You will always have a goodtime on having a new experience. You gotta meet new people and exchange them stories. Like your guide. Talk to them and ask them about their living and experiences.
- Do not afraid on booking your trip through events on Facebook. And of course, I recommend Travel Now or Never! I really thank them for the smooth sailing trip.
Still not convinced to go here? See my photos below and see for yourself!
Since I live in Cavite, I suggest you will leave Cavite on the night before the trip and just tambay on your fave coffeeshop nearby to avoid being late. Shoutout to Subspace Coffee House for accommodating us until 12mn! Really love the Purple Potato Latte.
And here is our itinerary:
Call Time: 1:00am
ETD Quezon City: 1:30am
Stop Over: 3:30am (Brekky)
ETA Tarlac: 5:30am
Start ride 4×4: 6:30am
Stop over: 7:15am (picture-picture)
Start Hiking to the top: 8:15am
Crater arrival: 9:00am
Free time: 9:00am to 12:00nn
Start descent: 12:30pm
ETA Jump-off: 2:30pm
Wash-up: 2:30pm- 3:30pm
ETD Tarlac: 3:30pm
Early dinner: 5:30pm
ETA Manila: 8:00pm
ETA Home (Dasma, Cavite): 10pm
Total damage per person: 2700 pesos ALL IN
Looking forward to your thoughts and stories!- JAR