There’s something about the beach that automatically turns my heart excited and relieved. Maybe it’s the smell of the ocean, the feeling of salt on my skin or the magical strech of blue over the horizon, but either or, it will always be my happy place.
The coastal town of Real is situated in the windswept northern coast of Quezon province (eastern part of MNL) where pacific rollers come pounding in, offering the closest surfing area in Manila, just around 4-5 hours away from the city. The peak season here is during the “-ber” months”, and when the conditions are right the waves can go as high as 4-8ft. It offers not only surfing activity but also fun to do’s like skim boarding, swimming, white water rafting, waterfall jumping, sight seeing and many other more.
The plan was originally an overnight stay with a workmate but unfortunately, she cancelled out 2 days prior the said trip. At first, I thought I might as well postpone it but since I already did my research and was ito try surfing because 1) it’s in my bucket list, 2) I’ve always wanted to ride the waves 3) I want to touch a surfing board, I decided to ‘call a friend’ 24 hours before the scheduled date, and poof, the escapade was on.
Luckily, I got myself an active and equally adventrous subordinate in the person of Aljohn. I was rooting for Aingel to come too, but she said she couldn’t make up her mind, maybe she’s tired.
Speaking of tired, I took a few hours of nap after my shift (Sunday, 20th), moving the 4 AM meet up to 6AM. This isn’t the best idea though, because I could have slept while traveling instead. PS. I’d recommend that if you’re planning to do a round trip, start up at around 1 AM so you could also witness the sunrise!!
The weather was warm and the road view was scenic so even if the travel was quite agonizing, I tried my best to remain optimistic. We chose Raymond bus line (Php.195/pax), which is not the most pleasant idea, because even if it’s the most hassle free route, it took us 5-6 hours to reach our destination and the seats were not very comfortable. Maybe next time, we’d rather a van which is located beside the bus terminal (Php.220/pax), note that the travel time is around 4-5 hours.
Finally, reaching ‘The Park’ turned my mood from grumpy to happy. When I saw the beach with those lovely white rolls, I whispered in my mind that the fun was just about to start. (Entrace fee: Php.35/adult). We rented a tent (Php.500, though this isn’t really necessary if you’re planning to explore the town instead of idling to enjoy nature), left our belongings inside and went straight to kuya Danny to start our mini-tour (Tricycle hire: Php. 200).
Just a few kilometers away from the camp is the astonishing Balagbag falls. It is a 2-tiered falls that runs to a 10 ft. deep basin, which makes it famous for jumping/diving activities. People there say that there is another falls on top of this one if trecked further. Unfortunately, we got not much time so we decided to leave and see other places instead. (Entrance fee: Php.20).
For those searching for fresh water, Real, Quezon caters 7 waterfalls and second of which is NokNok, neighboring falls of Balagbag. This place on the otherhand, is candind and crytal clear compared to the latter. The way the rays of the sun reflected on the water (to the stone) is amazingly pellucid. I tried jumping because I saw kids doing it, I thought it might be safe!
It’s around 5 ft hight and is mostly made up of pebbles so it doesn’t really hurt much when you hit the ground. It’s a nice experience, considering the adrenaline I gained from it, I was jittery for a few minutes. (Entrance fee: Php.20).
Kuya Danny also offered to take us to RealSurf so we could take photos and enjoy the vast malapad beach view.
After the whole adventure, we decided to go back to the camp to start our main goal of the day, Surfing!
Unfortunately, I was not able to capture myself with those little baby waves because we were not able to bring a camera, it’s a sad story. But the bright side is, I am officially a surfing novice and could manage standing in the board for a few seconds, ha ha! Well, see me once I get more practice and I’ll show you how to properly ride on an 8ft wave. Kidding!
The acitvity itself was absolutely fun. I can’t remember how many times I tried standing and falling from the board, but that’s the exciting part of it, learning and trying until, little by little, you can finally do it. I never felt exhausted, maybe because I was having a really great time. I can see now why people love surfing, because I do, too. This is difinitely in my must-do-list again (and yours too!). Aljhon on the other hand said that maybe water stuff is just ain’t his sport. Well, I guess there’s another frolic activity stored for him. (Fee: Php.300/ instructor/ hour; Php. 200/surfing board/hour).
Other tips: If you’re to do skim boarding, water rafting, etc., it’s best to go during low tide and on a sunny weather, cost and schedules can be researched in google (note: It’s good to research but during the trip be flexible of changes), or you may also send them (the park/realsurf/other resorts) inquiries in fb/yahoo. For the mini-tour trip, you may ask for Kuya Danny, he is really friendly and the locals know him. You may also bring or buy food there, charges are not that expensive. Also, bring lotion,sunblock and towels. Be a kid at heart, smile, wear your spirit of adventure and most of all, remember to you ENJOY!
Happy Summer, ~xo.