09
Apr

Panguil River Eco Park 5

(The fresh water is coming from the mountains. It is refreshingly cold.)

My cousin’s wedding prompted a random reunion and outing. Prior to that, our last family outing was in Club Manila East. But since this year was extra special, as we were reunited with relatives based abroad whom we have not seen from five to eight years, we chose a place which is and will forever be important and memorable to us. We did not even think of the fancy resorts in Laguna and nearby provinces.

Panguil River Eco Park 2

This place which we fondly call piit has been a backgrounder in too many photographs – from my grandparents’ generation to us. The last time I came here was post-college when there were still crabs (we would cook them), plenty of fish and other pertinent marks inhabiting in and by the river, as most of the members of the family and my gradeschool classmates (we had a very memorable day here) recall. ¬†There were no entrance fees for the longest time and in a way, we felt like we will forever be entitled to that because we are the town’s pioneer residents. I remember that more than five years ago, the management (whoever was managing that time, now it is managed by the municipality) wanted to start collecting fees for its maintenance. But in all cases, they were not charging us because we are some of the identified residents. Though it came to a point that I rarely go home and look touristy, then I should at least have someone known to the gate keepers.

Panguil River Eco Park 4

(When I looked at the running waters, I heard laughters and saw faces of too many people, including strangers from yesteryears, and I think that they would think and feel of the same way should they kiss the splash again.)

Until last Maundy Thursday, we embraced our old favourite once again. It changed a lot. It is obviously being commercialized now coupled by improvements. Maybe I am just one of the old patrons who is undergoing a phase of resistance because we loved it for its innocence (and I admit, for some sort of exclusivity). The hanging bridge that made me walk like a drunkard (forgetting about my fear of heights) and was swaying excessively especially when there are more than two people crossing by, was newly introduced.

Before the bridge’s existence, we needed to cross through the batuhan and river. Also, I missed the hiking obliged from the main gate until we are taken to first glimpse of running water. I did not see our favorite spots anymore where there are humongous group of stones where we used to place our stuff. Most of them are gone and replaced by the many cottages. There are washrooms now as well. When we were much younger, we changed clothes at our own risk/strategy (hello, malong!). Oftentimes, we went home with the same wet clothes.

And well, the school of fish and crabs are gone.

But just the same, it was a fun-filled day graced by chatting, camera and video shutters, cards and comfort food which were mostly inihaw and cooked there (grilling spots were steps away from the cottages). I just realized that I forgot to take photos of that (more important) part. Probably I was too busy catching up on stories with my relatives and that we were eating kamayan style (eating with hands).

buntotpalos
(Originally uploaded by Pinoy Mountaineer)

I am happy though that the hiking (and going through the long stretch of running water) is still necessary to reach the hidden falls (buntot palos) at the far end. The challenge really matters. Somehow I still feel some sort of exclusivity because not too many reaches that area (or only known to few). But I noticed that the hardwork is lessen by the availability of tour guides this time, armed with bamboo raft and vest.

Panguil River Eco Park

And wow, our very own piit was renamed into Panguil River Eco Park. The big changes are destined. But whatever happens, some things never change. I will always remember it the way it used to be.

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26 Responses to “Panguil River Eco Park”

i understand the feeling of “resistance”. it’s the same feeling i got when i saw Baguio after ten years. i wasn’t too happy because it wasn’t the Baguio of my childhood days.

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April 9th, 2010

I guess I would feel proprietary too if I have a place like this that I have enjoyed and my family have enjoyed for years and years. I really feel that resistance is an expected reaction. I hoped that they (mgt) would keep the outdoorsy/woodsy feel and not make it feel more like a theme park with a lot of trees.

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April 9th, 2010

It’s always a little sad to realize that your old childhood haunts have changed but you’ll always have the good memories so it’s not too bad. :)

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April 10th, 2010

i guess nothing stays the same, no matter how bad we wish to. the place looks wonderful though!

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April 10th, 2010

i guess most families have a usual vacation spot that always bring back memories.
despite the changes you’ve sited, the place still appears inviting to me. thanks for sharing.

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April 10th, 2010

wow! ganda ng mga shots. pero parang maganda nga ang falls diyan. ive never been there.

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April 11th, 2010

I’d love to visit this place someday, it looks refreshingly nice.

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April 11th, 2010

At first I thought I went to the wrong site – you did some makeover! Very good.
Regarding the other “change”, I share with you this feeling of resistance whenever we see childhood places not looking the way they were. There’s always this battle with development and it’s not gonna end.

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witsandnuts Reply:

Thanks. I have been planning to declutter for the longest time. :)

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April 11th, 2010

ay bago na header mo. the 1st photo reminded me of the show tabing ilog. :P

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April 13th, 2010

I was so impressed by the outcome of newly developed Piit, renamed as “Panguil River Eco Park”. I will always try to visit this place whenever I come home to my beloved hometown, Pangil.

For those who gave negative feedback, I understand your sentiments.

Let just support by sharing our wonderful experiences to everyone we know…

SALAMAT, Pangil ikaw ang aking Inang Bayan.

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HELEN AGUILAR LOPEZ Reply:

The place was really nice and impressive, very natural ang surroundings how I wish na ma improve pa ito, by cleaning ng big rocks in the river which have toO many “lumot” AT SNA MAGKAROON ITO NG SHIPLINE.

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Marian De Ramos-Navarro
July 6th, 2010

so this is the new name of piit…also visited this place years ago…was looking for new information on Pangil…also want to trek to that waterfalls someday

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September 9th, 2010

haha…being there is one of my favorite vacation even if its not popular vacation site I enjoy trekking,rafting and swimming near the falls…..of course with my friends…bradz

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angel_creiz12
September 13th, 2010

nakapnta na ko dito dati pero piit resort pa xa ganda dito sarap ng tubig…..experience the beauty of nature here !!!!!!!!!! i just love it………

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marissa "jane" cruz
October 5th, 2010

what a beautiful and such a nice scenery here in piit resort @ pangil laguna :) !. sna mkpnta kmi ulet ng mga old friends ko kan sa pangil love you guys! see you in summer ! :)

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juhlynn
November 4th, 2010

Really nice place… kamiss maligo sa Piit…

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bhong
November 28th, 2010

sarap, balik-balikan ang Piit Falls!

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lhouie
December 15th, 2010

Can’T believe the “piit” I know while growing up was developed this nice and now attracting outsiders. I’ll make sure I visit the place with my family & once again enjoy the water and think of all the fun memories I had there. I just wonder if the bridge is connected to the place where the falls is located. I have never seen the falls yet though we frequently visited Piit when I was growing up. Avoiding crossing the water with a floating device (salbabida)or swimming and just crossing the bridge by foot to reach the falls is an interesting change & improvement. Cannot wait to go & see the place.

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Josie Ladines Teo
January 27th, 2011

Hi,

Just want to ask po if you have any contact numbers for Pangil, Eco-park – Ambon Ambon falls. I’m planning to take my family there. And is wondering if you can help me with overnight accomodations.

Super thanks : )

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Yvette
May 9th, 2011

I brought there my co-officemates and they were all so impressed with the water na so malamig and the green nature most esp.the ambon ambon falls, Wow! really beautiful,sabi nila sana daw malinis ang mga big rocks and not malumot at sana magkaroon doon ng zipline. More power to the management of the municipality of Pangil.

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HELEN AGUILAR LOPEZ
July 4th, 2011

the place is so nice, can we have the contact number of panguil river so we can visit the place?thanks so much po.

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susan tolentino
August 29th, 2011

piit is one of the best place in laguna for me…..love the water and specially the falls “ambon-ambon” nakakatuwa!

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aaalia
December 20th, 2011

paano po pumunta dito kapag galing ng calamba

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April 26th, 2012

I Always remember this place, there’s a lot of beautiful stories and scene i remembered in this place “PIIT” and “Ambon-ambon falls as well as “Buntot Palos” sana lang hindi na pinalitan ang pangalan nito, dahil yung “PIIT” ang kinagisnana nating pangalan at isa sa mga pinagkakakilanlan ng bayan ng Pangil.

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Taga_Pangil
July 19th, 2012

I always remember this place where my teenage time i spent in this area.

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Taga_Pangil
July 20th, 2012