Feeling On Top of the World in Valencia, Negros Oriental, Philippines

10:00:00 AM Jerik De Guzman 14 Comments


STORY: It took me less than an hour  from Dumaguete City to arrive in what is known as the most photographed waterfalls in the whole province of Negros. 9.2 kilometers away from the sleepy capital is Valencia. Heard about it? Yes! Valencia is a popular town for adventure and thrill-seekers. Studies show that 65% of the town's geography is hilly terrain, and at 500 meters above sea level, it surely compliments the scenery here with the cool temperature. If you like to commune with nature, by all means... make your way to Valencia!

Casaroro Falls is a feat! The challenge begins 20 minutes before arrival because you'll be  faced with the worst road ever. Picture this: 10 minutes bumpy ride. 5 minutes walking because only one person can ride the motorbike. 5 minutes more bumpy ride. To be honest, no complaints were made because it actually adds to the charm. 

It's a great first day for me as i was able to navigate the lush forest and this awesome waterfalls. The place has been visited by travelers like me who want to get as close to nature as possible. Casaroro Falls is one of the best places to see when you're in Negros. Take note of that.


350 f^ck*n steps! Those steps, i will never forget. It seemed endless to me. I have to be honest in telling you, it's not an easy way going down, worse is going up. Get fit and exercise those muscles, you'll need them a lot. 

What to Bring? 
A light backpack with the following--bottled water, snack bars when you get dizzy, and swimming clothes. I highly advise wearing cross-trainers. Those beloved flip-flops won't do you good as the rocks nearing the falls are a little slippery. 

Going down is exciting, as you count 350 steps further down, you can hear the gushing sound of water from the falls. The scenery awakens your senses, increases your curiosity and prepares you for a thrilling adventure anytime soon.


Before the steps were built, travelers would actually risk their lives downhill and up the route to the falls. This staircase should lead you to what is 100 feet of awesomeness.


Casaroro Waterfalls in the town of Valencia, Negros Oriental

  I love Casaroro Falls!!!
"Guwapa diri!"

After a day of riding the motorbike with my guide, it's inevitable that i will swim. Braving the cold water, i managed to wash away all the stress cells looping inside my head. My guide must have sensed already how happy i was that he said i should take my time there. I did. Until two lost Americans arrived there, i had the falls to myself. Brilliant!


The adrenaline rush was taking a toll on my guide. He said, "I'll take you on top of Dumaguete". He sure did. Nestled on top of the mountainous region of Valencia, is a surprise hit to me.

Welcome to the Shrine (Fil-Am Japanese Shrine)

The commemorative shrine is actually a tall pillar with a solid concrete base. The pillar has three angles, making it appear 3 sided similar to a triangle. These three sides represent the three countries: Philippines, United States of America and Japan. In 1977 it was erected and unveiled by the war veterans, the surviving families of the water veterans, and the descendants of those who marched and died in the same war. Other people who were in a way a part of the war joined the unveiling ceremonies. The shrine was declared a historical monument shortly after it was constructed.


The trip going there is not for the faint-heart as it passes through some of the most ridiculously steep roads in the whole of the province. When it rains, head back. If the weather is good, you might need a 4 x 4 or a high-powered motorbike. I rode the latter and sometimes i had to go down when the road is a little too tricky to navigate. But for those who manage to continue on, you'll be gifted with jaw-dropping views of valleys in unexplainable proportions. It's one of my personal favorites, actually.


Scooting down the improbable roads, i glanced upon and saw the mighty, rugged mountains of Valencia. I stopped by in one of the many sheds and asked my guide to take my photo. It was a refreshing scene to be able to walk around for a bit with that view. I saw a couple of old men and little kiddos. It was fascinating to note that these people actually see this kind view everyday. I envy them so much. 

 

REALIZATIONS: Looking back and seeing my photos once again made me appreciate life even more. I thank God that i was blessed to be able to visit such a beautiful town. Valencia moved me in such power. People ask me where's my most unforgettable experience in Negros, and i couldn't think of a better candidate as top 1 than riding the motorbike 2175 feet above sea level on the gorgeous mountains of Valencia.

Additional text and Fil-American Japanese Shrine from here

14 Comments:

Nice shots.. Sagana tayo sa magagandang tanawin. Salamat sa mga blogger na tulad mo at napapakita natin ang kagandahan ng Pilipinas

Rizalenio said...

I was gasping after reading your post. Those 350 feet up stairs? - that's not for me...and that made me want to THANK YOU for bringing me here. Hahaha.

Why is the top of the mountain like that? Or was it because of the mist only? Hello there waterfalls, that's really beautiful.

Ingat sa mga trips.

chyng said...

"hardships" actually adds to the charm. ---> cant agree more. halos gumapang na din ako sa falls sa batad! haha but the trek down is a great experience itself.

cheers sa mga hardships! =)

--Chyng

OMG din ang unang nasabi ko sa 4th picture mo, ang ganda ng falls, ang taas! i wouldn't mind the hardship if the reward is like this :)

Ed said...

great you went to Jap Shrine and Casaroro Falls! We trekked from the Y intersection to the Jap shrine but when we got back, we just hired a motorbike to take us to Casaroro. It was worth it considering the number of steps to the falls. The descent was easy and after you're all freshened up because of dipping in the cold water, you realize you have to climb the 300 + steps up! haha. those were good times.

as for the Feb PTB post, I'll probably take Malapascua as I've already done Dumaguete during the previous themes.

ayan said...

ganda ng falls..damn niiice..
ska sarap tlga maligo sa falls lamig ng tubig..hehe

@Ang Babaeng Lakwatsera agree ako sa iyo. If kung di ko iisipin na Pilipino ako, pag nakita ko ang Pilipinas eh talaga naman ma-aamaze ako. wealth of natural wonders. nakakabilib na may bansa ganito karami at kaganda ang mapupuntahan! Thanks ha!

@Rizalenio ang hirap hirap hirap talaga! looking back, i am kinda proud of myself. i am not exactly the active kind of guy as i prefer my days doing absolutely nothing. but Casaroro falls came highly recommended so i had to check it out.

the mountains really look like that! it's different when you see it up close. grabe! if you were at Casaroro, i am pretty sure you'll take awesome photos! Good job! Thanks again!

@Chyng don't you just love the feeling when you think you can't do it, and then you were able to finally do it... iba ang feeling! i know, trips wouldn't be as exciting kung madali lang lahat. i haven't done Batad. Reading your post, parang ang hiraaaap! kaya nakaka-inspire kasi kaya mo eh! galing!!!

@lakwatsera de primera thanks so much! i have to say, it's really worth it!!! i spent a really long time swimming para mas worth it pa. ha ha but yes, iba ang Negros at Casaroro! It's an adventurer's ultimate destination! thanks ha!!! :)

@Ed he he di ko kaya mag-trekking kapagod. i rode a motorbike going to Japanese shrine. i really really want to stay long, and camping seems like fun. kaso i was there around 5pm na, iba ang guide ko mas extreme sakin ha ha. gusto niya mapuntahan ko ang Japanese shrine so sabi ko, Sige! Ang ganda ng view. And then going to Casaroro was painful sa butt because of the rocks/rough road talaga but part siya talaga ng adventure! saya naman feeling ko when you were in highschool lagi kayong tumatambay sa Casaroro!

@Ayan the first dip is always the hardest. i always feel like it's torture. but yes, it's always the most refreshing feeling, and it's natural too! Been reading your blog. Do post soon! Can't wait to read you stories about Siquijor and Davao.

Xang said...

Great photos! I like the falls, it is really cute. How much is the entrance fee? Is it safe out there?

@Xang he he i don't remember paying any entrance fee. or if ever there is, i didn't pay. It's a trek going down and up but it surely is worth it. I had the falls all to myself around 3pm. It is very rewarding. i love Casaroro falls. Going there made me realize how much i love traveling, i can exert so much effort to get to a place i want to go.