Last March 23, 2016, I went to Minalungao National Park with my friends. It was so random and unplanned. We just decided to visit Minalungao a night before. (#squadgoals. Kidding.) Minalungao is located in General Tinio, Nueva Ecija, Philippines.
Since we are all from Metro Manila, we all decided to meet in Cubao, Quezon City, Five Star bus terminal. From the terminal, you can opt to ride buses going to Cabanatuan or Gapan which will cost you around Php 160.00 – Php 200.00. The travel time is around 2 hours. Get off at Gapan and from there, there are tricycle drivers that will offer you the ride to Minalungao. Back in the days, the tricycle ride there only costs Php 150.00 – Php 250.00 but as of writing this post, it costs Php 600.00 – Php 900.00. You will enjoy the tricycle ride since it takes probably an hour to get there. (Well, I enjoyed it.)
Minalungao National Park was established in 1967 by virtue of Republic Act No. 5100. If I am not mistaken, the entrance fee is Php 20.00 per person and Php 50.00 per vehicle. Upon arriving, I immediately appreciated the view. I love that some of the cottages is on a bamboo raft (balsa). My friend and I explored the rock formations and eventually, we all had a swim in the river. Before the day ended, our tricycle driver joined us (the driver’s age was around our age, 20 years old.) for a swim. We climbed the rock formations then jumped on the river. It was a lot of fun. You can swim, cliff dive, hike and raft ride in Minalungao National Park. There’s also a zipline and a cave which you can try and explore.
There are locals around who would gladly assist you if you want to take a tour. There are also stores in the area (so if you and your friends decided to visit there on a whim like us, food and drinks wouldn’t be a problem).
What alarmed me and made me sad is that some of the rock formations has vandalism already. I wish the government or the management will do something about this.
I had so much fun, especially since I came there with friends. If you are considering of visiting Minalungao, estimated budget should be around Php 800.00 – Php. 1000.00 per person. All in all, the visit is worth it.