Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Biak na Bato National Park

Biak na Bato National Park is one of the premier national park being developed as tourist destination 
especially for local tourist. The place is an ideal environment exploration exposure with cave system, 
forest, river system, and mountains especially for first timers. It also has a lot of activities to offer like 
caving (lots of caves are located within the park area), hiking (trails for minor and major hikes can be 
made), climbing (Susong Dalaga of San Miguel from Mt. Mabio or the highest point, Mt. Silid at 1009 
meters above sea level), rock climbing (I don’t know if somebody has already done this but the place 
has lot of limestone walls to offer), river trekking (from Yungib I to park entrance, it’s a fantastic 
experience), kayaking (again, nobody have done this but  I tell, you, the rivers has a lot to offer), 
mountain biking (they have created mountain bike trails but haven’t seen one doing it), swimming 
(like the local tourists), camping (ideal for the whole family), rappelling (from cliffs to caves) and a lot 
more. A lot of local tourists come to this place during the weekend because there are picnics 
grounds available as well as swimming areas.  
Biak na Bato national park covers a total land area of 658 hectares and is a part of the mighty Sierra 
Madre mountain range. It lies in the north east corner of Bulacan, at the edge of the Sierra Madre. 
The park has a total of around 16 named caves and a couple of unnamed and unexplored ones. This 
is due to the fact that large portions of the Sierra Madre are made of limestone a composition which 
is an ideal candidate for cave formation. These caves had been carved by nature via the rivers that 
flows from Calumpit Bulacan, which passes by the park and empties at Candaba Swamp in Pampanga. This had happened for millions of years before the present cave system came to be. But 
bringing people to these caves poses danger since  lack of information can stop the evolution of 
these caves or worst, even vandalization of these beautiful natural phenomenon.

The place got its name from the distinctive natural environment that can be found in this area, which 
are mountain gorges with mountains resembling solid rock limestone cut by deep river gorges. "Biak 
na bato" literally means "split boulders". The area earned a place in history when the Filipino 
revolutionaries against Spain particularly the  first president of the Philippine Republic, Emilio 
Aguinaldo, used this place as their camp due to the natural cave systems and dense forest that 
helped them in securing the place. Here is where the famous historical event, the signing of a peace 
treaty between the Filipino revolutionaries or Katipuneros and the Spanish government happened. 
Eventually they called that event "The Pact of Biak na Bato". From thereon, the place became a 
historical pilgrim place during celebrations such as Independence Day. It also played a large role 
during the recent centennial celebrations of the Philippine independence. Most places here can be 
connected to Philippine history. Some locations are named in accordance with their functions during 
the these historical days like the Aguinaldo Cave, the "La Mesa de Aguinaldo", and the Tanggapan 
Cave where according to legends, the Katipunero’s receive their guest hence the name.

To go to the place, take a bus going to San Miguel, Bulacan along North EDSA. It’s safe and 
convenient and is much advisable to take your private vehicle since there are lots of transfers if you 
will just commute. Parking spaces are available as well as people who can guard your car so you 
don’t need to worry. From the San Miguel Hi-way,  Department of Tourism markers are situation 
along the road that will guide you to the place. If commuting, you have to get off from the hi-way 
where the marker and the access road to Biak na Bato are located and then take a tricycle ride to the 
park entrance. Park Entrance cost 15 pesos per head. Camping fee is around 150 if staying 

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