Picnic Grove in Tagaytay City is considered as one of the most visited tourist destinations in the Philippines. Tagaytay City is no doubt a place of sojourn for everyone. Because of its renowned picturesque beauty comprising of mountain ranges, cold climate added with the breathtaking panorama of the famous Taal Volcano and Taal Lake – both located in the province of Batangas. Undeniably, Tagaytay is also in the top list of those newly-wed couples for their honeymoon. Tourists from different places either local or abroad can be seen in the area especially during the month of November to February wherein cold climate can be experienced.
Above is just sort of overview and description about Tagaytay City.
Actually, this article is derived from an old article of my old personal blog site that was published four years ago. So this is considered a #throwback of what transpired from our trip to Tagaytay with my colleagues before. I will assume that, this is only applicable for those people who have not visited the place yet.
As observed nowadays – traveling is getting easier due to the existence of mobile/web applications such as trip planner, trip barker, sakay.ph, waze app and others. But, we didn’t use any during our trip – because back then, some of those were not yet created. Aside from that, despite the limited budget and time for the trip we were able to manage everything and enjoy our trip. We were also able to witnessed the romantic atmosphere in Tagaytay – Picnic Grove.
This article is being re-published mainly for my friends and former colleagues as well namely bondy, andy and jefferson. A retro article telling them that they are remembered. And for you guys, who are planning to go there. I hope that some information shared in this article would be sufficient and be of help to you. For clarity of the story, I omitted some contents which I considered irrelevant to the article though.
How to go to Picnic Grove in Tagaytay City for the first time without a help from a tour guide?
Definitely, that is not a problem because the place is very accessible from Makati City or from anywhere you are in Luzon area. Our target destination – Tagaytay’s Picnic Grove Last January 16, 2011 my colleagues and I had pre-summer escapade in Tagaytay.
Let us start the wildest trip!
Since it was Sunday, and the place where we were staying was quite boring, we decided to have some trip. We slated our trip at 8:30 am. So, I woke up from my slumber at 3 am. I waited for my friend, Bondy to beckon me since I’m still sleepy. I took a bath at 4 am and do some preparations of stuff needed. We searched for ATM machines to withdraw some cash and noticed that the streets were not that busy. We went immediately to Mini-Stop convenience store to buy some food to be brought for the trip and had our breakfast as well. After our breakfast and buying the stuff needed, we rode a taxi for Buendia Bus station. In the bus station, it was so unfortunate that there were no available buses bound for Tagaytay. So we asked one of the barkers where to ride a bus for Tagaytay. He said, we must go to Baclaran and stop at the Rotonda near MRT, LRT stations. We then thanked him and hurriedly rode a jeep going to Rotonda and pay for only Php10.00 each. We arrived at the Rotonda MRT, LRT stations at 8:30 am and finally able to rode a bus for Tagaytay. After some waiting moments, we started to roll-out to Tagaytay around 8:45 am and arrived in Tagaytay City proper at 11:15 am.
We got there for our one day furlough to experience Tagaytay atmosphere at Picnic Grove. We benched at a cottage where we could see a fantastic view of Mt. Taal as well as its surrounding body of water (Taal Lake). I was able to remember my Camotes trip where I trudged the steep mountain of Kalbaryo and Lake Danao. The sight brought back memories of horses, horseback riding. The gray ashes fall that could make you slip on your way up to the mountain. I even remembered how I pugnaciously stood at the bow of the boat while we venture through Taal Lake. In Tagaytay, I felt the breeze, it was so refreshing, so captivating. Ummm… Can I see the terrain in much higher view? As I reposed my spirit on this splendid hour, I shouted “Wow Tagaytay!” out of joy. After a while, we continued our journey through the vast terrain of the Picnic Grove. I saw young people singing, kids playing their kites, oldies reading books, lovers doing holding hands while walking (HHWW) and many families having picnic. Hmmm…, speaking about food, I got hungry maybe because of the sweets I’ve eaten. We had our lunch and snacks there. After our lunch, as I said, this is the Tagaytay Picnic Grove adventure.
So, this is an adventure trail? Hehe… oh what are we waiting for? Of course, nothing! We quickly took the challenge as we passed by people taking pictures (we took pictures of ourselves too). We then traversed hanging bridges and numerous hops of the stairs. After we reached the top, we went to the rancho to have our first horseback riding, but unfortunately, we’re not able to have some ride due to being afraid. And because, we didn’t know how ride a horse; maybe it took couple of days or weeks to learn how to ride. And man, I really love and want to try a ride. I really love the feeling of riding and controlling the horse while seated on its saddle, but it didn’t happen. “Maybe, I will do it next time”, I said.
After an hour of taking pictures, we moved to the Tagaytay People’s Park as requested by my colleagues. After paying the entrance fee at the park’s gate, we ran towards the top of the park. Everything that happened there was remarkable, lovely and quite a lesson. By the way, just a few tips- do some research first of the place where you are going visit or stay and make some itineraries. Based on my experience, making a travel itinerary is effective to make everything smooth and organized.
Tagaytay’s Picnic Grove is a perfect place to unwind, reflect and enjoy. Superb Tagaytay is really a popular destination among vacationers mainly because, of its cold climate and beautiful scenery – to my realization. It’s a nice place to stay or visit during holidays or long weekends to feel refreshed after months of work.
Tagaytay is a nesting ground of gardens because of the wonderful flowers and plants that grew in the area. A few walks away, you can find the shopping and entertainment hubs where you can indulge in endless shopping spree (joke) or opt to have fun at the bars. Within proximity, you can find the City’s commercial district, a good place to find or buy some of their locally produced products and some food delicacies. Before this trip, I already had an image of the place, but what I saw there made me think to reconsider going back to the place in the future. It was more and more fun than what I expected. Surely this blog entry will serve as a reminder that some point in time, my colleagues and I shared a portion of our lives together at the Picnic Grove. Mind you, our staff house was located in Makati that was why we had a long travel time going to and from Tagaytay.
Have you ever been to Tagaytay? Is a 3-hour stay or visit in the place enough? Too short maybe for those who have main purpose is purely to have a vacation.
Costs and Amenities:
- Picnic Grove entrance fee is Php50
- A day use of covered table is Php150 – 200
- Horseback riding – Php200 per hour
- Parking is absolutely free at Picnic Grove
- Cable Car – Php100 for one way trip during ordinary days (Php200 on weekends and holidays)
- Zipline – Php200 for one way trip during ordinary days (Php300 on weekends and holidays)
Some helpful tips for you:
- Bringing of foods and snacks are allowed inside the Picnic Grove.
- No idea if liquors are allowed 🙂 better not to bring some.
- Setting up of tents are allowed for as long as it will not obstruct the view of other tourists in the area.
- Pets are allowed but owners must be cautious.
- The place is uphill, better to travel with less baggage.
- Bring enough cash for your trip, it’s hard to find any Automated Teller Machines (ATM) in the area.
- Pack enough food and snacks.
- Bring camera or camera phones with you.
- Wear jackets.
- For tourists who will stay longer in the place, better make reservations to any affordable hotels in the area.
- Be an early bird especially during weekend. So better plan your trip ahead of time.
- Visit Tagaytay during the months of November to February for colder climate experience.
My observations or comments:
There are some trashes in different areas inside the park, maybe due to many tourists. Comfort rooms are so uncomfortable to use since it is not clean. The park admin must consider adding maintenance and security personnel for keeping Picnic Grove’s clean and safety environment.
Credit for Photos: Tweakiwiki.com – my old website but no longer accessible.