Who would have thought that Nueva Ecija has this well-kept secret? let’s unveil the “Minalungao National Park”
Just a few hours away from Manila, this place is very much worth visiting. It is located at Barangay Minalungao at municipality of General Tinio, Nueva Ecija. The nearest town is the Gapan which will be your gateway to this incredible natural attraction.
The water is clear, the rock formations are fascinating. The cave was small but it was still good. Entrance and everything else was cheap and affordable. It is really good for a day trip. The time we visited here, there’s no zipline yet and there’s only few visitors.
Local guides are readily available as you reach the place, even kids can be your guide and ours was two local kids aged 11 and 16 years old. You have a choice to see the entire national park either by foot or by boat. The side of the towering limestone formation through a trail. It is best to wear rubber shoes especially when you walk through the trail. It is advisable to hire a tour guide for they know where you should stride your feet. For a much easy and relax trail, you can rent a bamboo raft which costs P500. Both trails will lead you to an enchanting swimming area with refreshing and cool waters of the river. Though it’s quite hard to swim due to fast water current.
You can enjoy this wonder in less than a thousand-peso budget if you are from Manila.
How to get there:
From Cubao, hail a bus bound to Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija. These buses are found in Cubao Terminal (Baliwag or ES Transport Bus). Ask the driver to drop you off in Gapan town proper. In Gapan City, you can rent a tricycle and ask the driver to bring you in Minalungao. In our case, we meet our tour guide, kuya Darine (recommended by travel blogger “Manong Unyol”).
What to do:
– Balsa ride
You may contact our guide, kuya Darine at 0920-225-9652.
Kuya Darine also guided us to Climb 1,000 Steps In Exchange For A Breathtaking View. The 1,000 steps leading to a man-made cross to get a spectacular view of the park and its surrounding area.
If you want untouched and serene place for your next getaway, this is the right place for you. We had a wonderful visit to this hidden gem In Gen. Tinio, Nueva Ecija. They made some improvement to make it a tourist destination. But, more needs to be done.
Please be advised that there is no mobile signal at the park. There are a few small stores but best to buy what you will need beforehand since the prices are bit more expensive (you can stop by General Tiñio public market to do your shopping). There are locally maintained toilets and baths but please do not expect much.
Minalungao National Park is a unique place. And just like what most conscious travelers will tell you, we must be responsible for all of our actions. The park is a protected area and is only one of the few remaining natural environments accessible from the metro. Be sure to exercise the famous traveling mantra, “Leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but pictures, kill nothing but time.”