Angono Golden Hour

3:55:00 PM


Alternate Titles:
Angono Love Ya
Laguna de Bae
...
Double work shifts, music festivals, birthday salubong weekend-- it has been a really tiring month of March! I was so exhausted. I worked from home during my birthday. So for Holy Week, I decided to stay in the city and reflect instead of joining the exodus of people going on their week-long vacation. Of course, I couldn't really stay put so I decided to visit my friend Kriz in Cainta to watch the Senakulo.

Well. we were late so we didn't get to watch the crucifixion role-playing. Angono was only a 15-minute ride away so we opted to go to Laguna de Bay, also known as Lake Wawa, for a photowalk as consolation.

Higante Fisherman. This was standing in front of the Angono Municipal Hall. Every November, they celebrate 
the Higantes Festival AKA The Feast of  San Clemente, patron saint of fishermen.

I had low expectations along the way, because really, what else is there to see aside from a mass of water surrounded by land? (HEKASI lessons put to use!) And in case you're wondering why a "Laguna" lake is in Rizal province, here's a tidbit.
Laguna de Bay is the largest lake in the Philippines located east of Metro Manila between the provinces of Laguna to the south and Rizal to the north. The lake is shaped like a stylized 'W', with two peninsulas jutting out from the northern shore. Between these peninsulas, the middle lobe fills the large volcanic Laguna Caldera. In the middle of the lake is the large island of Talim, which falls under the jurisdiction of the towns of Binangonan and Cardona in Rizal province. (Source: Wikipedia)
Getting there

With zero traffic, my commute time took a total of 40 minutes from Bonifacio Global City to reach Laguna de Bay in Angono, Rizal. If you wanna get there hassle-free, your best bet is to go there during the Holy Week or during a Manny Pacquiao match, and I'm not even kidding. On a regular day, it could take up to 2 hours, depending on how light or heavy the traffic is.

Via private vehicle


The directions provided by Google Maps look accurate enough. Here's the link to the directions, just follow every turn and you won't get lost. There are two choices for the routes you can take, and both are below one hour. Again, these are the times it will take you to get there on very light traffic.

Via public transportation

Also, this is what I did.

Starting from BGC area near St. Lukes, walk towards Buting, or where 32nd Street intersects with Kalayaan Avenue. This is where you can ride FXs going to Antipolo/Tikling for only 40 pesos. Alight when you reach Cainta proper, where you'll have to ride a jeepney going to Angono.


This ride would cost you 15 pesos and it would take you around 15 minutes. Tell the driver to drop you off in front of the Angono Municipal Hall. From there. take a tricycle to the Angono Lakeside Park. The regular fare is 10 pesos per person.

Again, this is what I did to reach the place. If you know a better way to commute, let me know in the comment section. :)

What to do

Here's the first thing we saw upon arrival. A misplaced crane truck on the lake. I don't exactly know its business being there, but I must admit it added to the lake's provincial charm. Moreover. those little blocks on the horizon is the Ortigas skyline. Spell juxtaposition.

Rural vs Urban. It's not everyday you see a skyline at a lake's horizon

From what I saw, the Angono Lakeside Park is where the locals bring their family for recreational activities. There are picnic tables by the bay and a playground set beside them. Perfect for when the parents want to watch their kids while the kids play. It also get very windy thus making it a perfect kite-flying spot.

End of the Line. The end of the paved track. 

There is a track where you can rent and ride the bike and buggy carts for a minimal price. The track goes all the way to the far right of the photo above. Past this point is where we spent the first 30 minutes just taking in everything we can. I'm talking about the kangkungan by the bay below. It was so refreshing seeing those shades of green and blue.

Greens and Blues. Greenery brought to you by the humble kangkong and wild grasses.

I would go back just to see this view again! Very oh-THIS-is-just-in-Rizal?

There are restaurants that serve cheap -silog meals and barbecue stalls for your isaw fix. We didn't buy anything though as we brought our own snacks. I did wish they sold a local-to-Rizal delicacy. That, I would have bought.

I also took portraits of kids, more photos of the crane truck, landscapes with the boats lined up...

Presyong Probinsya. Boat rides in this side of Laguna de Bay only costs Php 20 per person. 

...when a man on a boat asked us, "Baka gusto niyo mag-picture sa gitna? Bente lang isa." I was confused at first. Will they literally just bring us at the middle of the lake? That's only 20 pesos. Surely, it won't get us too far, right? But no, the boat ride was for a one trip around the farthest bamboo markers of the *lake. It's the cheapest boat ride I've been on. Definitely presyong probinsya!

*NOT the whole Laguna de Bay, just the lobe

Then we decided to walk inland, way past the dirt road for more photos, thinking it couldn't possibly get any better than the photos we already took. Right? Well, here came Angono surprising us again with MORE beautiful scenery. My heart was jumping up and down from excitement. (Read: Stock photos for Instagram purposes! Ahhh!)

Photowalk Gold Found. Never did I thought this part of Angono would be this pretty. 
On top of this elevated cement strip is where we let the golden hour pass, while indulging on a pseudo-picnic of junk food and water. This is also where we waited for the sun to set. I could not tell you enough how beautiful the view was!

Photos

After years of being in the cabinet, I finally took my kit lens out for a spin again. As much as I love the sharpness and fastness of my 50mm lens, I wanted to take wider landscape photos. (I could go on and talk about this forever but this is not what you came here for.) So look, I've uploaded some of the shots on my Flickr account!

Total Expenses

For that amazing Ortigas skyline during sunset and the magnificent nature goodness, this one was really cheap, especially when compared to other out of town trips nearby Metro Manila (e.g., Tagaytay, Subic, etc.) Here's my expense report.

Transpo: Php 65 (one way)
Boat Ride: Php 20
Dinner: Php 48
Snacks: Php 51     
TOTAL: Php 184

This would sound like a cliche and probably like a Mastercard ad, but the overall experience? Priceless.

Aren't you convinced to go yet? :)

It was almost a year ago when I saw this article that featured the Art Route surrounding Laguna de Bay. It was a year late and we didn't really get to see some art (lol, definitely going back for the art) but my first Angono x Laguna de Bay experience was unexpectedly so much fun! So fun, that I started running out of adjectives to describe it and I just ended up using the word "fun." The photos I took above simply don't give justice to the beauty we saw in person so I'm encouraging everyone to visit when you have time. Go! See its beauty and charm for yourself! 

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