If light trek, waterfalls & camping is your thing, then my recent trip is the right place you need to visit next.
A fellow blogger and friend, Bean in transit, orchestrated a monthly trip and it is free for all. It’s called the 1,000 peso-challenge. Basically, the challenge is to NOT exceed the budget of Php 1000.00. There are no consequences tho. Well, eternal shame on you, on your family, on your cow maybe?
Johanna (Ms. Bean of Bean in transit) usually plans the whole trip ahead and gives us a rough budget for the entire trip to make sure we don’t exceed a thousand pesos. The first 1000 peso-challenge was in Malabuyoc. I wasn’t able to attend that one. Thankfully I had the time to join the second one, and hopefully not my last trip with them.
The second challenge was an overnight outing. We’d camp for the night and the next day, we’ll trek the day to a waterfall nearby. Here’s a rundown of what happened that day.
The initial meet up time for our camping trip was at 2:00 in the afternoon. We didn’t opt for anything earlier than that since most of us in the group were night owls and can’t wake up early in the morning even if our lives depended on it. Ha ha.
We were 12 in total but were divided into three groups going to the campsite. The first group (the lucky bastards), were Johanna (Bean in Transit), Rome (Basta Bisaya), Sean (His Hidden Letters), Ryze (Synergium Real Estate Solutions) and his wife. They rode Ryze’s car on the way to the campsite together with our supplies for the trip.
The remaining people in our group, Jazmine (Cebu Spa and Wellness Guide), Chanel (Channel Marie Ph) and I took a bus going to the south. The bad news was that I got caught in traffic and let the two go on without me. By the time I arrived at the terminal, they were already on their way to the south.
BACALLA WOODS CAMPSITE
The campsite that we were going to is called Bacalla Woods Campsite. It is located in San Fernando, Cebu. Approximately 41.20 Km away from Cebu City. It’ll take you an hour to get there (longer if you’re stuck in traffic like I did. F-you TRAFFIC!).
I asked the bus driver to pull over at San Isidro (a barangay in San Fernando). That was where we would all meet before heading to the campsite. From the highway, we took a Habal-Habal to Bacalla Woods Campsite. Roughly a 30-minute ride from the highway. It’s quite far up that you’d drastically feel the change of temperature.
We still weren’t complete tho. Ryze’s car broke down somewhere. That’s why they got delayed. It was okay at first, then we realized that we can’t do anything to help them because there was no signal in the campsite. The worst part is that they had our supplies. That means we can’t cook our dinner. We decided to just prepare our tents and take some photos while waiting for them.
We were all hungry by the time Johanna’s group arrived at the campsite. It was past 7 in the evening. After an hour or so of cooking our dinner, we were all ready to dig in – BOODLE FIGHT STYLE.
The rest of the evening was spent talking about serious things, from politics to history of Cebu Blogging to why we exist in the world. So much for the adult talks (haha)
I brought a tent with me but I hadn’t slept on it. Why? BECAUSE THE GROUND IS EFFIN’ ROUGH. I wasn’t used to camping in the woods. I usually camp near the beach, so the ground is a whole softer. Thank God I brought a banana bed with me. Rome slept in my tent since he didn’t have any.
I woke up very early around 5 in the morning. I was waiting for the sunrise to take some morning shots. Too bad the sun was hidden behind the mountains ahead.
By the time everyone else was awake, it was past 7 in the morning. Before we ate our breakfast, we were all invited by a group of Yoga Enthusiast for some morning exercise. It was pretty much easy to look at. More like a dance routine than an exercise. But much to my surprise, it was harder than it looks. It only took us 5 minutes before we gave up. My legs were pretty much sore, a good leg day workout.
At around 9 in the morning, we were all ready to trek our way to Bugho Falls. We have already eaten our breakfast and got ourselves ready for the trek. Ian Bacalla, the owner of the Bacalla Woods Campsite, also happens to be our trek guide as well. He initially told us that it was an hour long trek. We, however, had the choice of riding a habal-habal from the campsite to the falls, but where’s the fun in that? And since we didn’t want any more added expenses, we chose to trek instead.
What was supposedly an hour trek ended up to a two hour and a half. We weren’t really complaining since it was very light. Plus I love getting myself tan.
We initially planned to bring our lunch with us. We didn’t have time to prepare though and thought that since the falls was near, we could be back to the campsite by lunch time. At around lunch time, we just arrived at the falls and that was when regret came crashing in. we should’ve brought our lunch with us. Thank God a few in our group brought some trail food to munch in.
One of the few waterfalls found in San Fernando is called the Bugho Falls. Compared to other waterfalls in Cebu, it’s quite cute (like me). According to Ian Bacalla, the falls is slow right now since we’re approaching summer. That didn’t stop us from exploring the falls and took some photos with it.
Going to the falls took us two hours and a half. Going back? It only took us 15 minutes. We took a habal-habal back to the campsite mainly because all of us were hungry and haven’t eaten our lunch.
Ryze and his wife didn’t go along with us to the falls and just stayed at the campsite. We were thankful because they took the initiative of cooking lunch for us while we were gone. Thank you, FAM!
We ate our very late lunch, got ourselves ready, packed our belongings. About 2 hours since we arrived back at the campsite, we were all ready to leave. We took a Habal-Habal down the highway. We initially planned to take a bus back to the city but every bus that passed by were either full or can’t accommodate us all. We decided to just take a jeepney to the next town and from there, take a bus back to the city.
IN A NUTSHELL
2:00 PM – 2:45 PM – Waiting at South Bus Terminal
2:45 PM – 4:00 PM – Bus ride from Cebu City to San Isidro, San Fernando
4:00 PM – 4:30 PM – Habal-Habal ride from San Isidro, San Fernando to Bacalla Woods Campsite
4:30 PM – 7:00 PM – Free Time (picture taking, exploring the area, chitchat)
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM – Dinner Preparation
8:00 PM – 9:00 PM – Dinner & Clean-up
9:00 PM – 2:00 AM – Bonfire and chitchat
2:00 AM – End of Day 1
5:00 AM – Woke up and prepared for sunrise
5:30 AM – 6:00 AM – Sunrise Picture taking
6:00 AM – 8:00 AM – Yoga Exercise & Free time
8:00 AM – 8:30 AM – Breakfast & Clean-up
8:30 AM – 9:30 AM – Final preparation for the trek
9:30 AM – 12:00 NN – Trek to Bugho Falls
12:00 NN – 2:30 PM – Swimming, Picture taking at the falls
2:30 PM – 2:45 PM – Habal-Habal ride back to camp
2:45 PM – 3:30 PM – Late lunch & Clean-up
3:30 PM – 4:00 PM – Pack Up
4:00 PM – 4:30 PM – Habal-Habal ride down to the highway
4:30 PM – Ride back to the city
CONCLUSION & SIDE NOTES
- Start your trip early. Going outside Cebu City can sometimes be annoying because of the traffic. An hour trip may sometimes extend to 2 hours.
- Bacalla Woods Campsite has a dirty kitchen. You can use their cooking utensils too. Just provide the food & ingredients.
- Tap water is from a nearby spring. It’s safe to drink, plus it’s cold.
- Bacalla Woods Campsite has an entrance fee with free breakfast. (more information below)
- People there are friendly. Don’t be afraid to interact with them.
- Bacalla Woods Campsite accepts walk-in guest but it’ll be more convenient to call them first.
- You can rent a tent or hammock if you don’t have any.
- There are also rooms for rent.
- There are different activities you could do near the campsite
- Going to Bugho Falls is one.
- It took us a 2.5 hours trek to Bugho Falls (they told us it was just an hour)
- You could take the easier route and just hire a Habal-Habal
- Leave No Trace. No one wants a dirty guest.
- Pack light. Bring only what’s necessary.
- There is no signal at the campsite. No internet, texting or calling.
BACALLA WOODS CAMPSITE
We are the home of the artists, environmentalists, explorers, extreme sports athletes, campers, and all nature enthusiasts.
Contact no. 0923 825 6945