The Enticing Beauty of Nature in Balbalasang (Intern: Marjonette Dunol)

Rafflesia flower one of the endangered species in the Philippines found in the Balbalasang forest

If I’m to choose one of the places in the Philippines I want to often visit during vacation is? Balbalasang would certainly be the immediate place that will pop in my mind. I can still visualize the clean and green surrounding and the cold tingling breeze in the morning. Also the warm smiles of the people in the community touched my heart and I felt very welcome in their place.

The majestic view of mountain ranges seen in mountain summit of Balbalasang
Balbalasang is one of the barangays of Balbalan in Kalinga Philippines. The place is dubbed to be the “green heart of Cordillera” because of its rich biodiversity and scenic views. The place is a protected area for both flora and fauna. It still preserves some of the trees that are mostly endangered nowadays and also with wild animals. And for these reasons, it was declare a national park in 1972 by virtue of Republic act No. 6463. The park covers an area of 1,338 hectares this includes the cool and clean Saltan river.

Jeep going to Balbalan
In order to get there, from Manila you can travel by land or by air. By air, you take a flight to Tuguegarao and from there you can take a jeep or a van going to Tabuk City. From Tabuk City you can now take a jeep going to Balbalsang and enjoy the scenic view of Kalinga as you travel to Balbalasang. If you want a longer trip, you can take a bus from Manila going directly to Tabuk City and from there you will ride a jeep going to Balbalasang, Balbalan.

You don’t need to worry in getting lost in the place upon arrival because the people in the community can almost all speak English and Filipino and you can talk to them upon arrival then they will show you the way. The first thing you will do upon arrival is to go directly to the leaders of the community to inform them your presence. Though anyone in the place that you will meet will guide you the way but for honorable reasons, you must firstly ask permission to the leaders.

Panoramic view of landscapes in Balbalasang
The place is a very peaceful that you don’t need to worry about your safety.  You can explore by yourself but to be sure you can ask for a guide to go around the place. One good thing is that you don’t need to pay in order to enter the place what you just need to do is to show respect to the people and the place itself and you will be in peace.

The place also has an affordable guest house where you can stay. For the food you can order a food from the community or you can cook you own food in the guest house because there is no cafe or restaurant in the place. The community people will gladly serve you some native foods or you can tell them the food that you want to eat.

For my personal suggestion, I would also recommend tourists to go fishing using traditional tools. You can ask permission to the community people before you go fishing and you can also ask them to show how they catch fresh water fishes and they can lend you their tools. I recommend it because it is one the activities that I enjoyed most when I went there. The water is clean and clear that you can see the bottom of the river.

Cool and clear water of the Saltan River in Balbalasang
One of the must a try activity is trekking in the mountain. You will surely be fascinated by the beauty of the forest as you go higher to the summit of the mountains. The beautiful view of the majestic neighboring mountains will surely take your breath away. You will be able to see the rich diversity of flora and also some of the biggest and oldest trees that are now considered endangered species.

As a nature lover, these experiences that I had in Balbalasang is a must share to everyone most especially to nature lovers like me. It is a good option if you want to rest your mind or breathe from the stressful days you had. The healthy environment will surely takes away all those weariness and replace it with a pleasant memory of your great connection with nature.


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