Magdapio Falls, Laguna, Southern Luzon, Philippines

It cannot be denied that the Pagsanjan experience – the banca ride, the rafting trip to the falls, and the magnificent views of the gorges is still the best Magdapio falls treat. However, an exciting alternative has opened up in Feb. 24, 2007- a land route to the falls. The mayor of Cavinti developed a ‘Cavinti Eco-Park’ which sits at the origin of the falls, containing excellent facilities. It seems to be a well-developed site! A 15-minute trek down a cemented path will take you to the first waterfalls: the Nakulo Falls and the ‘First Falls’. Then, after two great viewdecks seeing the majestic plummeting of waters of these falls, you will be asked to wear a harness and rappel down a 672-step steel staircase/ladder. After which, voila! You will be face to face with the famous waterfalls. Then a raft will take you through the falls into the cave — all these for P150! (Nov. 2007) Then, for just P250, you can have your trip to Pagsanjan via the same river, thereby experiencing the whole treat in a cheaper and novel fashion.

The forested environment of the Cavinti Eco-Park is really nice. From the point of view of someone at the gorge, the waterfalls are really tantalizing. One could see monkeys loitering in the forest, or reptiles wading in the river. For the adventurous, other exciting possibilities include a visit to the Bayakan and Cavinti Falls, further into the east river system. Here, bats, snakes, and lizards are said to hide — but they don’t harm the human visitors. Still, keep your fingers crossed when this sidetrip becomes operational!

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