Last Updated on February 17, 2018 by Tina
A year ago today, I received two news, one good and one demoralizing. The good news: we already have our 13th-month pay. The other news: something about employee status that I’m not going to give details about anymore. Thing is, it made me feel really bad that it affected my mood the whole day. I wanted to forget about it so I texted my Egyptian friend if he wants to hang out that night but he was feeling lazy and asked if we could do it the next day instead. His reply saddened me even more so I decided to spend the weekend in Baler. After work, I prepared my stuff and at midnight I was on a bus bound for Baler.
It was a quick trip to Baler. I stayed there for a night only. The highlight of that trip was my visit to Dicasalarin Cove. I have been to Baler twice but I never went to Dicasalarin. It is 30 minutes away from Sabang Beach and to get there if you don’t have a private vehicle, your only option is to ride a motorcycle because the road is too steep for a tricycle. I have fear of riding motorcycles because I feel that it is unsafe. But I don’t have a choice and I really want to see the place so I took a risk. The motorcycle ride was very thrilling because of the steep, curvy road. But the view was very much worth it.
Dicasalarin Cove is privately owned by the Angaras. There is an entrance fee of Php 300.00 for walk-ins but if you are a guest at Costa Pacifica, the prime resort in town also owned by the Angaras, you will only pay Php100. The cove is open from 8 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon.
There is a lighthouse on a cliff and to get there, you need to walk from the beach until you get to the stairway leading to the lighthouse. Take the steep flight of stairs that is about 170 steps to reach the foot of the lighthouse.
Getting to the top of the cliff can be quite tiring especially if you go there at noon but it must not be missed. At the top, you get a 360-degree view of the coast of Baler. I was very lucky because when I visited the place, there was no one else at the cliff. I had a really good time just savoring the moment and appreciating what nature had to offer me.
After a few minutes at the lighthouse, I decided to go down because even though it was windy at the top, there was no shade and it was very hot because I was there midday.
There are a lot of things you can do at Dicasalarin. It has a cove at the back that has fresh water which you can swim around. The beach has amazing sand and the water is really cool to feel. Cottages are all over the place for shade. Common shower areas and toilets are also available. There is also a restaurant at the cove.
Before going back to the town proper, I dropped by Baler’s PAG-ASA Weather Radar Station. Entrance to the facility is free, you just need to register at their logbook. The weather station’s rooftop offers a 360-degree view of the surroundings that include the Sierra Madre, Aniao Islets, the Baler Bay, the Dicasalarin Cove and its beaches and the vastness of the Pacific Ocean.
How to get to Baler from Manila:
- From Cubao, you can either ride Genesis bus (regular aircon bus) or JoyBus (de-luxe bus) to Baler
- Genesis bus: 7-8 hours travel time; Php 500+
- Joybus- 4-5 hrs travel time, no stops; Php 730 (you can book online here)
- From Baguio, you can ride Lizardo Trans. The bus terminal is located at Slaughterhouse Terminal. It is a regular non-aircon bus and fare is Php 300+. Travel time is 8 hours. Trip schedule: 4:00am, 5:30am, 8:00am, 10:00am and 2:00pm
How to get to Dicasalarin Cove:
- From Baler, you can hire a tricycle to Dicasalarin but since the road going to the cove is narrow and steep, you will have to transfer to a motorcycle going up. If I remember it right, I paid Php 700 for the whole trip.