I had been planning on going to Aurora Province since last year. Today, I finally saw this province. As based on what I had read in the Internet, i thought that the road going to Aurora was really hard to pass, but it was “Chicken Feed” especially if your car is driven by my Best Buddy/Driver M. We experienced rougher roads than the Roads going to Aurora.
So here is our Itinerary for our Trip which turned out to just a Day Trip 🙂
3:10 – We left the house for Baler
3:30 – We arrived at the 1st NLEX Toll, Toll Fee P36.00
3:38 – Had the Pick Up Full Tank at Petron, P2,512.00
3:44 – Left the Petron Gas Station
3:50 – Stop Over at Shell Balagtas Station to buy some snacks and drinks.
4:03 – Left Shell Balagtas Station
4:29 – Arrived at the last Toll, P138.00
4:32 – Start of the SCTEX
4:53 – Exited SCTEX at La Paz, P69.00
4:50 – Arrived at Pantabangan
8:10 – Arrived at Maria Aurora, Aurora Province
8:30 – Arrived at Baler, Aurora Province
Travel time from the house to Baler: 5 Hours
9:00 – Check In at Bay’s Inn,Room7 P1,050.00 (12Sqm, 2 Single Beds, AC, Cable TV, Breakfast)
Bay’s Inn Main Building
SeaFront Restaurant of Bay’s Inn
11:55 – Visited the Oldest Tree in the Philippines (600YrsOld) at Balete Park
Said to be the Oldest tree in Asia at 600 Years Old. This Balete Tree is also called the Millenium Tree and is located at Balete Park in Maria Aurora. To encircle it, 60 Men are needed.
12:20 – Visited Museo de Baler
Museo de Baler, It was closed when we arrived, they said they were fixing something.
This is President Manuel Quezon’s Car
Statue of President Manuel Quezon in front of Muse de Baler
Pond inside the Museo de Baler compound
12:40 – Lunch at Bahia de Baler Bar and Grill, P962.00
Bahia De Baler Bar and Grill
Shrimp with Garlic, the Shrimp was sweet and Fresh! Delicious
Pinakbet, the vegetables were cooked just right.
Grilled Tuna in Lemon Butter Sauce, The Tune is FRESH, sweet and tender. Though it did not taste Lemony. It even tasted like Pepper Tuna, nonetheless it was good.
Adobo de Bahia (Their Specialty), Combination of Crab and Pork.
This is the View from the Bahia de Baler Bar and Grill
1:50 – Visited the Santo Entierro,Baler Catholic Church and Town Hall
The Life Size image of Jesus Christ encased in a Glass Coffin. Sculptor is unknown. It is said to be miraculous and that if you wished something it would come true.
Baler Catholic Church
The Baler Town Hall
Grand Stand beside the Town Hall
2:25 – Shopping at the New Market (Longanisa P250/Kilo)
Market of Baler, beside it is the Pasalubong Centre where I bought the Kamagong Pieces
2:30 – Shopping at the Pasalubong Centre (Kamagong Pieces 2600 and 3650)
3:45 – Check Out Bay’s Inn
3:50 – Depart Baler
3:52 – Arrive Maria Aurora
Lush forests of the Sierra Madre Mountains
This is the River (Water is Clean, Clear and Fresh) that you will have to cross if you take the Bongabon Route.
6:08 – Arrive at Nueva Ecija Border
6:42 – End of ZigZag Road
6:50 – Arrive at Bongabon
7:30 – Arrive at Cabanatuan
7:45 – Dinner at Five Mama’s Cabanatuan
8:50 – Arrived at SCTEX La Paz
9:10 – Exited SCTEX to NLEX, P69.00
9:48 – Paid Toll at NLEX, P174.00
9:56 – Arrived at Balintawak
10:20 -Home Sweet Home
This is Bahia de Baler Resort. I think this is Bahia II. This is more Upscale compared to Bay’s Inn. Though not Beachfront. Their website is http://www.bahiadebaler.com. The Bahia I is just few minutes from here.
Travel time Baler to House: 6Hours and 20 Minutes
How to get to Aurora
This what we took going to Aurora, NLEX then take SCTEX, exit at LA PAZ. Then La Paz to Cabanatuan City. Just before Cabanatuan City Proper is a sign that says to Aurora. This is what we took. We asked directions to Pantabangan. In Pantabangan we just followed the signs that said going to Baler. The Pantabangan Route is more paved, less Zigagged than the Bongabon Route, so this is better if you want to reach Baler faster. If you want to see Nature at its finest, then take the Bongabon Route, where you can take a bath at the clean and fresh river that you will be passing and you will get to see Hectares and Hectares upon Hectares of Virgin Forests.
Where to Stay in Aurora
In Baler we stayed at Bay’s Inn, their rooms are priced from P700-P1000. This comes with free breakfast. They also have WIFI here (FREE). They have a beachfront restaurant here also. The other place here is the Bahia De Baler (www.bahiadebaler.com) which is more expensive. They also have a restaurant, the Bahia de Baler Bar and Grill.
My Thoughts on Aurora
Aurora Province is a sight for every traveller, its underdevelopment gives it a Charm that she can call her very own. Her people also adds to her charm, with their friendly nature and hospitable ways. Aurora Province should be left untouched for it is perfect as it is.
Why go to Aurora?
If you are looking for some peace and quiet, away from all the Developments of the City then this is the perfect place to go to. If you are also a nature Lover, you will get more views of Virgin Forests than anywhere.
Why Not Go?
If you are the type of Traveller who wants Nightlife then better not go as you will not find anything here. The Town of Baler does not have any Jollibee or Mcdonalds either. What you will find are eateries and restaurants serving local fare.