Taal Heritage Site

Taal is a town in Batangas which is famous for its heritage houses. The ancestral houses are found along the streets near the famous Taal Church. Old houses are still visible in Taal’s Poblacion.
The heritage houses are found in Calle Del Castillo, Calle Gliceria Marella, Calle Jose Diokno, Calle Marcela Marino Agoncillo, Calle Ramon Diokno, Calle Antonio De Las Alas, Calle Conrando Sanchez.
The Augustinian friars founded the town of Taal. At the heart of the town is the Taal Basilica or known as the Minor Basilica of St. Martin de Tours within the archdiocese of Lipa. St. Martin de Tours is the patron saint and the fiesta is celebrated every November 11 and was founded in 1575.
The town of Taal was destroyed in the Taal Volcano’s eruption in 1754. And the church was rebuilt a year after but was again damaged in 1852 due to earthquakes. It was declared a Minor Basilica in 1954 and a National Shrine in 1974.

In front of the basilica is a park which includes Jesus’ shrine, and on the right side of the church is the Escuela Pia or Taal Cultural Center, which is considered to be one of the oldest educational institutions in the country. It was initiated by Taal Arts and Culture Movement Inc.

During our visit, we went to one of the famous restaurant called Don Juan BBQ . Taal is also famous for its balisong, barong and tapa. Other places to visit are the different museums: Galleria Taal, Museo nina Marcela Marino at Felipe Agoncillo and The White House: Gregorio Agoncillo Mansion.

Burot Beach in Calatagan, Batangas

Burot beach is a cove located in the secluded area in Calatagan, Batangas. The entrance going to the beach is along with the bushes, trees and dirt road. There are signages along the area. The cove is connected to the mainland by a narrow dirt road. You will find a guardhouse before going inside and he will ask you for an entrance fee and to sign a paper that I didn’t quite read except that they were not responsible for anything that will happen to you inside. It was said that it was already acquired by the SM Group of Companies. But as of the time of writing, the beach is not open to the public anymore.
Going inside was a little difficult because of the dirt road but when you see the beach, you’ll find a camping site and a beach where there are lots of tourists around. There was no electricity, no hotel or resort in Burot. For campers, tents can be rented, there are a bathroom and toilet and a sari-sari store inside during our visit.

Burot Beach is facing the Verde Island Passage and along the coast of Punta de Santiago Lighthouse. We explored the right side first, where there were rock formations along the coast and we get to see the view of the cove.


From the other side of the beach, a small sand bar is nearby the left side of the coast. They told us that it was the Puting Buhangin sand bar. Some other attractions near Burot beach are Pandac Island and Calumbayan Island, which are near the Calatagan port. There are so many other resorts near Burot Beach.

Caleruega Church – Chapel of Transfiguration

Before it became famous as a wedding church for lovers who will tie the knot, Caleruega church is known for all the Thomasian students or those who belong to the Dominican community as a house of prayer and renewal. The graduating students of the Thomasian community have their graduation retreat in the hills of Batulao in Nasugbu, Batangas.

The breathtaking view of the Church on the hill makes it a charming venue for the wedding. It became a church for weddings because of close proximity to Tagaytay where there are so many venues for the reception after the wedding ceremony.

During the early days, the Caleruega Church has the Church on the hill, the main hall, pavilions, a large garden and the dormitories. After coming back numerous times, the place has been developed and attractions were added like cottages, a campsite, a hanging garden and the tent chapel.

Aside from weddings and retreats, the place is also a venue for different recollections, prayer meetings, and workshops, youth camps, religious gatherings and seminars.

Canyon Cove in Nasugbu, Batangas

Nasugbu Bay is the coastal area in Nasugbu Batangas and is very famous for the different coves. Most families go to these particular coves like Canyon Cove, Natipunan Cove and Kawayan Cove.

Canyon Cove is located in the Far East Road, Piloto Wawa, Nasugbu – Ternate Highway in Nasugbu Batangas. It has the whitest coastline in Nasugbu.


The resort is famous for big events like conferences, team buildings and venues for weddings and other events. The long stretch of white sand shoreline and the overlooking island called Fortune Island is the highlight of the resort. They also have the largest recreational swimming pool. The beach also has a breakwater that shields the waves preventing it to be huge.

Laiya Beach in Batangas

Laiya Beach is located in Laiya-Aplaya in San Juan Batangas. It is on the coastline of Tayabas Bay. It is already near the boundary of Batangas – Quezon.

Palm Beach Resort

The resort is located in the more secluded part of Brgy Hugom, San Juan, Batangas. There are spacious Casas on the beachfront with each casas boasting a unique design. The Casas have balconies that are overlooking the ocean.

Other amenities are the Marvi’s Dining Restaurant, an infinity pool, an air-conditioned function room, a Multipurpose pavilion and cabanas in front of the resort. You can also enjoy water sport activities like snorkeling, kayaking, speed boating, banana boating and disco boating.

La Luz Beach Resort

It is a small resort also located in Brgy Hugom and used to be a privately owned resort until it opened to the public. It is adjacent to the marine sanctuary and the rock formation on the right side. The rooms are good for 2 persons – Hilltop and Annex; 3 persons – Premier Room and for larger groups for 4 persons – Annex Dorm, 6 persons – Premier Loft Room and Annex Dorm Room and even up to 10 people in their Dormitory.


There are so many water activities that they offer like snorkeling, kayaking, jetski, windsurfing, banana boating, flying fish, disco boating, diving, riding a yacht and motorboat. Other activities also include biking and fat biking, hiking and even your own bonfire.

Acuaverde Beach Resort

It is in the Lobo – Malabrigo – Laiya Road. Acuaverde beachfront has the widest sandbar. The rooms are all modern designs and using local materials. There are different casas to choose from; Casa Brisa, Casa marina and Casa Montana.


There are two restaurants inside the resort. The first is Cocina Restaurant which offers either buffet or an ala-carte depending on the resort occupancy. Another one is the Al Fresco Bar where you enjoy a selection of different drinks.


The best part of the beachfront is the sun loungers where you can enjoy the panoramic view of the ocean or hear the crashing of waves during night time. Other activities are kayaking, jet skiing, flyboarding and Fly fishing.

Anilao in Batangas

One of the best diving spots in the Philippine archipelago is located 3 hours away from Manila in the coastal barangay of Mabini, Batangas. It is surrounded by the Balayan Bay and Batangas Bay and overlooking the nearby islands Marikaban and Caban Island. It is known as the birthplace of scuba diving in the Philippines.

Anilao was the first beach I visited during my early teenage years when I went to a University-wide field trip for employees in my aunt’s workplace.

There are so many resorts and diving center in the whole of Mabini. Here are the different resorts I visited.

Vistamar Beach Resort and Hotel

Vistamar Beach Resort and Hotel is one of the firsts resorts in San Jose, Mabini. The resort is ideal for large groups. It is in the coastal area of Balayan Bay overlooking the town of Calatagan. They have an indoor pool, restaurants, and a lounge area. The beach area is a little bit rocky in the resort. The nearest diving center is the Anilao Scuba Dive Center if you want to experience budget diving.

Bontoc Seaview Guesthouse

The second time I visited Anialo was for a Christmas party. I crashed a Christmas party with my former colleague. It is also known as Bontoc in Batangas Bed and Breakfast and it located in Balagbag Bagalangit. There’s a 5-minute walk to the nearby resort if you want to enjoy the shore. The accommodation includes buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner. And they really serve sumptuous dishes. We were the only guests during our stay. The rooms have a vibe of the Bontoc province and I love the veranda overlooking the sea with the karaoke machine for us.

It is also nearby the trekking site of Mt. Gulugod Baboy where you need to get to Mt. Gulugod Baboy Tourist Assistance Center before the trek.

Vista Aplaya Beach & Dive Resort

It is also located in Balagbag Bagalangit, overlooking the beautiful islands of Marikaban and Caban Island. It is a family-owned beachfront resort and perfect for intimate gatherings of companies and families.

They have a pool and a rocky shoreline. They also serve buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner with an available karaoke machine in the dining area. We also avail of their scuba diving lessons.

Padre Pio Shrine in Batangas

The Parish and National Shrine of St. Padre Pio is a catholic church administered by the Roman Catholic Church of Lipa. It is consecrated to St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, an Italian priest and a saint for exhibiting stigmata for most of his life. It is a pilgrimage site at Brgy San Pedro, in the Santo Tomas – Lipa Road in Santo Tomas, Batangas.


The Shrine became a famous tourist destination because of the different structures around like Mother of Mercy Belfry, St. John and Mary Vianney Chapel of Reconciliation, The Sanctuary of the True Cross of Christ
and Holy Water Sanctuary.

 

Other structures built within the National Shrine include the parish rectory, office and religious store, the Fountain of Hope, the Stations of the Cross, and recently the Divine Mercy Sanctuary for Pilgrims.


A first-class relic was entrusted to the proposed church in 2003. The Parish of St. Padre Pio was erected some months after the canonization of St. Padre Pio in 2002.