A Day at Kwebang Lampas and Lukang Beach

I had planned this trip for so long, but then things started happening that it got postponed for almost a month. I originally planned going to Pagbilao, Quezon June 27th, but Princess got sick and I had to bring her to the vet June 24th. Aside from the fact that my tight budget got even tighter because of the vet trip, I couldn't possibly embark even on a one-day trip because of Princess' meds. Both Nanay and Angel, the two women I live with, were both busy (and then there's also this issue of OC-ness).

I moved the trip to the 4th of July, while the US was celebrating their independence. But Angel started getting sick July 1st and even got confined on the 3rd to the 4th. How about that?

The week after that was a lazy one, and I realized my Penshoppe slippers was already so thin I was afraid I'd go home barefoot. So I bought this pair:

Then I thought it would really push through on July 15th, Thursday, but Typhoon Basyang hit the country and a massive brownout ensued. I told myself I'd go if the power would be back on before 4am of Thursday. But it didn't. It went back on 5am. LoL!

Anyway, I thought that perhaps the powers that be didn't want me to go alone so I looked for a travel buddy. 17-year-old Gerald was oh-so-willing to come so there, we left 4:20 am Sunday, July 18th, 2010.

We're already seated behind the driver's seat of a non-aircon bus by 4:25am at the bus terminal near Jollibee Alabang. I wanted the front seat at the other side but it's already taken so we just settled behind the driver. It's too late when I realized it was a wrong decision cuz there's this campaign poster at the wind shield blocking our view of the road. But anyway, that same poster also blocked the sun from where we're seated so it wasn't that bad at all. Never mind the road.

Bus left 5:24am, and the driver over-estimated the trip when he told me the trip to Lucena Grand Terminal would take 3 hours on a Sunday with minimal traffic. We reached the terminal at exactly 8am.

At the same terminal was the queue of Pagbilao-bound jeepneys. The first in line was still empty. We sat beside the driver to get the full view of the road. No campaign poster this time, just the small sign board blocking my view. The driver guessed where we're headed with my 40 litre backpack. He then told me his jeepney wasn't only Pagbilao-bound, but Polo bound as well. The internet-how-to's told me I should drop at the Pagbilao market to take another jeepney to Ibabang Polo and we could've been so lucky we wouldn't have to take another jeep to Polo, but then I remembered Pagbilao's St. Catherine Church was also in my list of places to visit.

The driver dropped us off in front of the church which was just a few feet from the Pagbilao arch. It was a Sunday and there was an ongoing mass.

It was kinda big in comparison to my local parish.

After church, we went looking for the the market and the terminal of Ibabang Polo-bound jeepneys. A barker we asked for the direction of the market discouraged us to go there saying it's too far and that jeepneys going to Polo were already full. He told us to just take the tricycle (parked nearby) to Polo for Php350.00. But of course the guides I'd read told me otherwise. It was still so early (9am) to run out of jeepney rides.

I told the barker that we had to visit the market anyway cuz we're buying something and headed for the direction he pointed at earlier. Finding the market was an easy feat. Lots of kind people around. A smiling man in his forties even pointed us to a shortcut to the terminal.

We're on the jeepney by 9:15am, which left after 32 minutes of waiting for passengers.

And yea, it was crowded not only by people, but of baggages as well.

Exactly one hour after, we reached the jeepney terminal at Ibabang Polo. When the driver learned that we were going to Kwebang Lampas, he told us not to get off just yet cuz he would take us to the gate of Sitio Banlisan. I realized eventually that he'd actually make a u-turn there, but still, I was thankful that we didn't walk that distance anymore.

Anyway, we didn't see the PNP detachment anymore cuz the jeepney already took us to this gate. But if you're going there and the jeep drops you off at the Polo jeepney terminal, just walk a little until you find the PNP detachment to ask, or just follow the road to the left of the detachment until you see that gate above.

It was an hour of walking. The road starts concrete, then soil and mud, then gravel. The road splits somewhere but just choose the road that stays close to the power plant (that is, choose right). When you see that wall at the right side of the gravel road pictured above, that means you're already near a little compound where you could park your car or bike or whatever for a fee.

We stopped here to ask for directions cuz the compound seemed the end of the road.

The men pointed us to the open portion of their fence adjoining the power plant's walls.

They also gave us an option to ride this man-powered boat for Php30.00 but I declined. From what I read, you still have to walk after the boat ride anyway, so we headed off after thanking the men.

We just stayed close to the wall (since there's no other way around but that) until we reached the power plant’s Gate 4 as per instruction by the men. Then since there’s no other way to go around, we walked the road away from the gate.

There's a man-made river/canal to our right streaming water with white-ish foam towards the sea. Power plant waste. I'm not sure but what else could it be?

We reached what looked like a dead-end. The front and right side of the road are the seas, and to the left was a rocky down slope.

Where else would we go but the rocks? I then noticed a couple of young men at the cliff not so faraway. As we got nearer, I noticed their clothes laid out on big rocks, and there were plastic bags strewn all around. I approached them and realized they were swimming at the sea below the cliff. Another man, older than the two, was in the water.

One of them walked with us a little to point to us the track in the bushes.

It wasn't a long walk until the track went down to an almost dry swamp.

Looking across, I saw a fenced walkway and from a picture I saw on the net, that was the path that would lead us to the gate!

We knocked on the improvised gate locked with big chains. A sign just inside the gate, but was placed to make sure the people outside would see it, told us it's a private property. Huwattt? But anyway, Mang Panyo answered our knocks after a few and informed us that entrance was Php50.00. Okay, so I read it was Php35.00, but whatever. Fifty for a peek of paradise? Who's complaining?

That triangular hole on the face of the cliff is Kwebang Lampas.

And that's my silhoutte against the bright sea at the other end of the cave.


My Sandugo sandals...

I wanted to wait for sunset even if the last jeepney from Polo to Pagbilao leaves at 4:30pm. I was willing to just hire a tricycle from the parking lot/compound mentioned above for Php300 (which I larned from the jeepney driver I talked to on our way from Lucena to Pagbilao). But my Nanay called my PLDT Landline + to tell me that it was raining so hard in Taguig and that from what she heard, it was also raining in the south. Mothers know best, as the saying goes. So we started packing by 3pm. Nevermind the sunset.

As we were packing, it started getting dark so fast and we noticed the sea waves got extra strong (beer? lol!). After 15 minutes, we were all packed and started searching for Mang Panyo to say goodbye. He also introduced us to Aling Divina who also takes care of the place.

We could have run if not for the heavy bag on my back, but we made the one-hour trek forty-five minutes amidst the lightning and thunder. Scary really. I had a raincoat with me and I gave it to Gerald. His dad would kill me if he got sick because of that trip.

Luckily, we weren't caught by the rain. We were already seated safely inside the Pagbilao-bound jeepney when it poured.

By that time, I had no idea where to get a bus to Manila aside from going back to Lucena Grand Terminal. And since it's free to ask, I talked to the driver about my little dilemma. I learned that buses from Bicol en route to Manila passes by Pagbilao, and the kind driver dropped us off at the waiting shed which was just at the side of St. Catherine Cathedral.

We left the Polo terminal at exactly 4:47pm and reached St. Catherine Church at 5:45pm. The rain had already stopped to a drizzle by that time. Ten minutes later, we were seated on a non-aircon QC-bound bus. It rained hard again while we were on the bus but the activities of the day started to wear me down. I was too tired to even care.

We reached Star Mall Alabang at around 9:20pm. Another jeepney and a tricycle ride and I was safely home by 10:53pm and playing with my Princess.

Summary of how to get to Kwebang Lampas:

*Ride a bus bound for Lucena Grand Terminal (pictured above)
*At the same terminal, look for the Pagbilao-bound jeepney (pictured above)
*Get off at the Pagbilao market which is also the end-point of the ride
*Look for the Ibabang Polo terminal (pictured above)
*At the Polo terminal, walk a little to the PNP detachment and follow the road to the left / or if the jeep took you to the Sitio Basilan gate (pictured above), you're lucky
*Follow the concrete road and if the road splits, just choose the one closer to the power plant
*When you arrive at the compound/parking area (pictured above), either hire the boat for Php30 or turn right like we did and follow the path close to the power plant's wall until you reach Gate 4 (pictured above)
(if you decide to hire a boat, the rest of this how-to is invalid. if you decide to just walk, read on.)
*Walk down the road facing Gate 4 until you reach the end of it
*Go down the rocky down slope to your left towards the direction of a cliff
*The path splits, right is to the cliff, left is to Lukang Beach. Choose left.
*Follow the path until you reach the part where it goes down a muddy swamp (pictured above), and you'll see a fenced walk at the opposite side of the swamp.
*Follow the fenced trail until you see the gate (pictured above).
*Knock and wait for someone to open the gate and you'll be rewarded with the view of a paradise.

Mang Panyo apologized for the state of the beach (dried leaves and stuff) because it had only been days since Typhoon Basyang hit them. But I think it didn't make the place less breathtaking, as you can see from the pics.

Spent Php1,097.00 for this trip (for the 2 of us, and including food and drinks).

Here's a "shaky" video of the walk from the "parking area" to Lukang Beach's gate:

2 comments :: A Day at Kwebang Lampas and Lukang Beach

  1. Do you remember any contact info of Mang Panyong? cause i also wanna go to Lukang Beach and stay overnight if possible. Thank you

  2. Sorry for the late reply, but Aling Gemma is the new caretaker of Kwebang Lampas. And sadly, I don't have the contact info.

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