Waterfalls near Manila: With all the getaways that you can arrange, this one could be the cheapest. Get to see these icy-cold waterfalls in Laguna.
How to get to Bunga Falls
By Bus: There are bus terminals in Manila that’s bound for Sta. Cruz, from Sta. Cruz you need to ride a jeepney going to Nagcarlan, then from Nagcarlan town proper you can arrange a tricycle transfer directly to Bunga Falls. Travel time: 3-4hours.
Private Car: Drive from Manila to Victoria Laguna, once you see this big statue of ducks, you need to turn right, drive straight then turn left when you see the conjunction road and from that point you’ll be driving straight to Nagcarlan. The waterfall is before the town proper, you need to look for the signage “Bunga Falls”, it’s on the left side of the street if you’re coming from Manila.
Bunga is a 15-meter twin waterfalls and about 9 to 10 meters deep, it’s the deepest that I have ever been, so make sure you know how to swim before taking the plunge.
How to get to Bukal Falls
Bus: Take a bus ride from Manila to Sta. Cruz, tell the driver to drop you off Pagsawitan, then from there, ride a jeepney that’s bound for Majajay, hire a tricycle to Barangay Bukal Hall (registration area), it’s an hour tricycle ride and fare is about Php300 (with tour guide), good for 4-5 passengers, then you’ll be trekking for about an hour. Travel time is 4-5 hours.
Private: Same route as going to Nagcarlan, you’ll pass by Liliw Laguna (buy some shoes if you’d like), you’ll see a signboard “Bukal” outside the main road, turn left going to Barangay Hall, you can park your car there, then begin trekking.
Entrance Fee: Php20 (US$0.40)
Tour Guide: php300/group (US$6)
You’ll have to arrange your trip as early as 6am if you are coming from Manila, the registration hall closes around 2PM, by then, you’ll not going to be able to get to the waterfall.
Bukal has probably the most enchanted catch basin waterfall compared to Bunga and Taytay, the waterfall is not that aggressive and not as big as the two waterfalls but it’s so clear that you can see the rock formation at the bottom.
How to get to Taytay Falls
There are two ways to get there if you are coming from Manila, (1) If you are visit it directly, the suggested way is by Nagcarlan-Liliw-Majayjay (same route as the other two), this is the shortest way from Manila. (2) If you are visiting other towns like, Pagsanjan, Luisiana, etc., and you want to side-trip Taytay Falls, then take Lucban-Majayjay route.
There are sign boards that would lead you to a small narrow road going to the waterfall. Entrance fee is Php20 (USD 0.40). There are no cottages but some locals are offering mantles made from nylon fabric which you could lay down and sit upon (Php100 or USD2 for the whole day and it’s big enough to cover your bags or picnic baskets).
Taytay Falls is the one closest to my heart because this has been my family and friends’ destination every summer, and during early years it was all bumpy and muddy, the narrow roads going to the waterfall were just sands and big rocks.
Taytay Falls isn’t the only waterfall within that area, what I can remember is there were other three waterfalls above it, I can’t recall the time when they’ve closed it, but during those years, Taytay falls was our entry point going to the other waterfalls above it.
Bukal Falls somehow reminds me of Taytay Falls’ early years—muddy, big rock formations and uneven pathways. You need to buy your foods along the way because there are no stores available around the area. I hope we can keep it this way.
Bunga Falls is the most mysterious waterfall among the three, if you’ll look at the waterfalls from afar you’ll notice that it looks like an old man with white balding hair, LOL, idk, story told that there’s a creature beneath the water that pulls tourists down to the deep, again, idk.
Overall, it’s an adventure like no other, I’m done with waterfall-hopping. What’s next?
- Transportation allowance: ₱310.00 (US$6.10), one way.
- Food allowance: ₱1000.00 (US$20)
- Other expenses, (entrance fee, etc): ₱500.00 (US$10.00)