I didn’t have any travel plans yet.
I was focused on my work because there’s just too much happening on it right now. I even thought of setting aside my blog for a while and focus on work, like normal people do. But I don’t know if I can do that. I know I’m different. I need to write. I need to create and smash the boredom that routine life brings.
I’ve got a lot of things going on in my mind. I’ve been going home late at night from work very often, and it’s not making me happy either. But there’s nothing I can do.
I need a break.
Just in time, I received an invitation from the Tourism Promotions Board, the marketing arm of the Department of Tourism, for a media familiarization trip at Haranah Eco park in Tanay Rizal. This is a family owned and operated Eco Park that is only 2 hours away from Manila.
By the time we arrived, we were welcomed by kids wearing some traditional Filipino dress while playing Angklung, a musical instrument made of bamboo. It was my first time to see and experience this instrument. What a warm welcome from Haranah!
Haranah is a 16 hectare property covering a lush green forest and mountain. The highest point which is the Lounge and View deck overlooks the Laguna De Bay and the Sierra Madre mountains. The best way to enjoy the eco park is by walking through a pathway that leads to the property’s four stations from the Bahay Kubo, the groves, fish pond, down a hill and through the forest.
Walking through, you will encounter different flora and fauna that are endemic in the Philippines, and also some from other countries. No need to worry if you’re unfamiliar of the plants, each has a small placard with enough details and even its scientific names! So this is perfect for students’ excursion and field trips.
But more than anything else, it’s the peace that comes with nature is the experience you’ll truly cherish at Haranah. It’s a chance to relax from the bustle of the city.
Our tour that morning ended at the property’s solar-powered multi-purpose hall. It’s where we also had our sumptuous lunch. I liked the pasta and of course, the Filipino food!
The multi-purpose hall can accommodate up to 200 people and it has a stunning view of the sky and mountains. We just stayed there for a while after our lunch looking at the vast beauty of nature. There’s no mobile signal at the property so it’s really a chance for you to disconnect for a while, contemplate and ponder your thoughts.
Just in front of the hall is a wide open space perfect for outdoor activities and team buildings. There’s also spot for rock balancing. This activity is good for practicing focus and balance. It also relaxes your mind.
Aside from that Haranah Eco Park has a conference hall perfect for seminars and conferences, clinic and basketball court for sports enthusiasts. After our siesta time, we tried one of the most exciting activity at the Eco Park, and that is hiking! The property has a hiking trail going down the hill at the heart of the forest until it reaches the river and then back. Well, it’s been awhile since the last time I hiked so I really enjoyed it. It was tiring of course, with my weight and all hahaha! But I miss the sweat and the adrenaline hiking brings. If you also want to try this please coordinate with them so they can let you be accompanied by their guide.
When we got back to the Multi-purpose hall, it was merienda time. Hahaha! It was also a chance to bond and talk with my fellow travel bloggers, staff of TPB and also the family that owns the property. It was a nice experience chatting and playing cards with them.
The owners said that the property was originally planned for day tour outdoor activities and conferences, but soon more customers suggest to stay overnight and do some camping. Since their advocacy is about protecting our nature and experience it first hand, they soon offered the comfortable camping. And when I say comfortable, it really is because we all tried it, sleeping inside a huge tent with cushion, with the cool mountain breeze and stars.
The best thing about Haranah is their restroom and shower rooms. It’s comparable to some hotels out there. It’s so clean and well-maintained. I remember waking up in the morning, going out of the tent and straight to the shower hall. I was able to experience nature with the best facilities.
That night, the owners set up a bonfire for us to roast marshmallows and hotdogs. We also played a lot more group games. Good thing we all had our jackets on, the night can be very windy and cold. Haranah Eco park is perfect for team building, group and family outings. But it also has a different effect for every individual. It is your much needed vacation near Manila.
Work stress and the city life can sometimes disorganize you, your thoughts and feelings. You just have to disconnect for while and go back to nature.
Bookings and Important Details:
- Haranah Eco Park is for reservations only for groups suitable for team buildings, conferences and family outing. For group packages and rates, please contact them with details below.
- But there’s a good news, they’re accepting solo and small groups every Saturday starting on April 8. The Day tour package is Php 1,000 per person with lunch set.
How to get there
Address: Sitio Mayagay 2, Barangay Cuyambay,Tanay, Rizal, Philippines
Contact Number: 376-6645
Facebook Page: Haranah Eco Park
The Haranah Eco Park is located near the old Radar Station of PAGASA about 300m away from the Marcos Highway and around 2km from Sierra Madre Hotel. It is about 1 to 1 ½ hour drive from Sta. Lucia East Grand Mall.
Tanay Rizal Tourist Spots
The next day we also explored some other Tourist Spots in Tanay, Rizal like the Calinawan Cave and the Regina Rica Pilgrimage Site. Blog posts soon! 🙂
Note: This trip was part of the media familiarization tour by the Tourism Promotions Board of the Philippines.