Team “Ang Pinaka” is not just about food trips. This May, the team went to Albay, home of the majestic Mayon Volcano, and discovered fun-filled activities to do in the province. Aside from admiring Mayon from afar, try island-hopping and spelunking.
Here’s how you can enjoy fun-tastic activities in Albay.
Cagraray Island Hopping
Brgy. Misibis, Albay
One of the most famous private resorts in Albay is Misibis Bay. Located at the northern part of Albay, Misibis Bay can be quite pricey; rooms go for $750 to $1200 a night.
If you’re on a budget and can’t visit Misibay Bay, try Cagraray Island Hopping and tour around the lesser known but equally beautiful islands of Lagonoy Guly. One of these islands is Manaet Monkey Sanctuary, home of coconut-eating monkeys.
The island hopping tour takes about 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the weather. The blue green waters of Lagonoy Gulf, however, will take your mind off the long journey.
Cagraray Eco Park
Brgy. Misibis, Albay
Going around the Cagraray Eco-Energy Park park requires a bit of cardio work. You have to trek your way up from the pier to the park itself.
You will be rewarded, though, with an impressive sight of the Cagraray amphitheatre, the only amphitheatre in Asia, and picturesque Misibis bay; and the Cagraray Eco-Energy Park Chapel, a breathtaking piece of architecture.
Brgy. Misibis, Cagraray Island, Bacacay, Albay
Just an hour away from Legazpi is the municipality of Bacacay, and a two-hour boat ride will take you the beautiful island of Cagraray, home of the famous Mataas cave. Mataas cave is one of only two caves in Albay open to guided tours and spelunking.
Going to Mataas cave would require you to trek the forests of Bacacay. From the pier, walking to the cave would take about 20 to 30 minutes. Exploring the whole cave, meanwhile, would take about a day because of its numerous chambers.
Mayon Skyline View Deck
Easter slope of Mt. Mayon, Tabaco, Albay
A trip to Albay wouldn’t complete without seeing Mayon Volcano in her full glory. At Mayon Skyline observation deck, the majestic Mayon is in full view.
Learn about its history, too, at the Mayon Planetarium and Science Park. Photo installations about the history of Mayon are displayed along the hallways. A 20-minute documentary about the tales inspired by Mt. Mayon, as well as a timeline of its eruptions, is shown to visitors who want to learn more about the beauty and terror of Mayon.
Putsan, Tiwi, Albay
A project of the Department of Trade and Industry, the Philippine Ceramics Arts and Crafts Center was established to support the locals of Tiwi, Albay by providing them a sustainable livelihood through pottery making.
Men and women of Tiwi work hand in hand in this industry. The men mold the clay, while the women paint the designs.
Products of the Philippine Ceramics include vases, ash trays, pencil holders and lamp shades. They also make coffee mugs and tea cups, but these items are made-to-order.
The items are so affordable that host Maey Bautista almost raided the factory. Vases cost P65-500/piece, while a set of three vases cost P500-P2000. Ashtrays cost P50-P100/piece, pencil holders P35-P50, and lampshades P65-P150.
Adventures should always include an appreciation of the history and culture of your destination. When visiting Albay, take a tour around Cagsawa Ruins Park, the remnants of the stone church built by the Franciscans in 1724. It was in 1814 when the lahar brought by the eruption of Mayon Volcano destroyed the church.
On one side of the park stands the haunting ruins, which you can tour in less than 30 minutes. On the other, the park bursts with so much life. Pasalubong stores and food stalls line the area.
Aside from history, make sure to also appreciate local delicacies. Drop by Albay Pilinut Candy located at 873 Rizal St., Old Albay District, Legazpi City, Albay. The store, established in 1936, was the pioneer pili nut candy factory in Albay. Tourists flock Albay Pilinut Candy for its pili nut de mazapan (P95-small, P150-large) and crispy honey pili (P95). The store is also famous for its other experimental takes on pili nuts: salted pili nut, butterscotch pili nut, and sesame seed pili nut, to name a few. One pack of candy pili nuts cost P95 (small) and P200-300 (large).
ATV drive around Mt. Mayon
The ATV drive around Mayon would take you cruising over the dirt trails at the foot of the volcano.
Team “Ang Pinaka” got the services of of local adventure tour company Bicol Adventure ATV during their visit. Bicol Adventure ATV offers three ATV trails. The easiest being the Cagsawa Short Trail (P699/head), a 45-minute ride that will take you on a tour of the surrounding ruins. The median of the three trails is the Green Lava Wall Trail. The ride takes about two to three hours going to and from the 1968 Green Lava Wall, a lava bed sprawling with vegetation (hence, the name) created by the eruption.
The most difficult is the Cagsawa-Lava Wall Trail (P1,850/head), which requires about two hours of speeding over bumps and navigating around sharp curves before reaching the Pawa-Mayon Lava Wall Trail (and another two or three hours going back).
Read more about Team “Ang Pinaka’s” ATV adventure:
Of bumpy and dusty roads: An ATV adventure around Mt. Mayon
Brgy. Pandayan, Sto. Domingo, Albay
The Coral Genesis Project is composed of coral bead structures resembling a holy rosary fabricated using concrete, wires, lead conductor and glass jars. This structure is deployed 25 feet deep into the Albay Gulf.
Aside from being a tourist attraction, the Coral Genesis Project also serves as an environmental effort. The beads make the corals grow faster through tickling the corals with low voltage electricity. At night, the coral beads automatically light up and attract calcium particles to build up and form artificial reefs.
To see this, you can either do snorkeling or scuba diving. To get there, you can rent a boat for P200 and you have to pay an environmental fee of P50. Snorkeling costs P150. Contact Sir Erwin at 09175812718 or the Albay Tourism Office if you want to visit the Coral Genesis Project. Visit their website for more details.
Embarcadero de Legazpi
Victoria Village, Legazpi City, Albay
Embarcadero de Legazpi is the premiere urban mall in the whole of Bicol region. It is popular among thrill-seekers because of the activities you can do in the mall. Some of the heart-pounding activities you can do here is the Edge Walk, where you will walk high up along a metal railing with the city of Legazpi at your full view; and the Amazing Zipline, a 350-meter ride from the lighthouse to the Albay Gulf; and a 59-feet wall climbing adventure.
For rates of the activities, check out the Facebook page of Embarcadero de Legazpi.
Brgy. Pandayan, Sto. Domingo, Albay
Want to skim board on the beautiful black sand beaches of Albay? Practice your balance and make sure your legs and lungs are up to it, as skim boarding entails running as fast you can and throwing your skim board on inch-deep water. Then hop on your board and slide on the beach as if you’re surfing and skating.
Aside from Brgy. Pandayan in Sto. Domingo, Brgy. San Isidro is also one of the go-to places for skim boarding in Albay. Waves of the beaches of Brgy. San Isidro go as high as three to ten feet.
The good thing about skim boarding in Albay is that locals can give you lessons for free. It’s better to bring your own board though or buy one (skim board prices range from P600 to P1500) as rented boards may suffer from constant use and may break under your watch.
–Bernice Sibucao/CM, GMA News