I spent my Valentine’s Day with couchsurfers who happened to be named Valentina and Valeri, thus the title. That’s them in the photo above. They told me they want to go to a mountain, falls or anywhere nature-y so I brought them to Bucari, Leon.
We started at Jaro Public Market to catch the Leon jeepney. It is advisable to go there early because travel time is 2 hours and especially if you just have a one-day itinerary.
From Jaro to Leon town proper is one hour. What we did when my friends and I went there last year was we took a tricycle to the sort of terminal of the jeep that goes to Bucari then take the jeepney which will drop you off at the campsite. Unfortunately, it was a Sunday and they told us that they cannot assure if there is any jeepney going up Bucari or if there is, we have to wait for long (although I somehow doubted if this was true).
We believed them anyways and we took the single motorbike from the town proper to Bucari which would take us to the falls and the driver will serve as our tour guide as well.
At first, Valentina was hesitant especially that it is another hour of travel. But then, judge from the photo how she felt once we were off.
*Recently, we exchanged emails to exchange photos that we have taken. This was the photo she particularly asked for. And she told me that when she showed this to her mother, her mother was like, “WHY AREN’T YOU WEARING HELMETS?”
I think that will be my mother’s reaction too if she sees this:
But then, goodbye to the experience of jeepney rooftop riding like we did last year with my friends:
Okay, so we went to Imoy falls first.
Then to the campsite at Sitio Tabionan to rest and have lunch. We didn’t bring any lunch but there are sari-sari stores and mini carinderias nearby. Also, you can have a picnic at the campsite or cook your food there (BBQs).
Then we’re off to the Mansiga Viewing Deck.
There were a lot of changes from last year. There’s a sari-sari store and a buko juice stall up there. Also, the buwis-buhay fallen tree ideal for photo shoot now had handrails wherein you have to fall into queue and leave any amount of donation.
It was raining when we went home so we were kind of drenched wet because we’re just riding the motorcyle. I realized that it was rather ideal to bring raincoats than umbrella when travelling.
As a thank you, they gave me this matryoshka doll:
We then ate dinner at SM City Iloilo and then had a few drinks at Smallville.
BUCARI Price List :
Fare Jaro to Leon town proper – P30
Trike to terminal – P7
Fare to Bucari – P30-P50
Motorbike from campsite to falls – P100
Imoy falls entrance fee – P20
Motorbike from town to Bucari – P150-200 per head, P250 if you sign them up to go to falls and serve as their tour guide
Tour guide – P150-P200
Campsite entrance – donation
Cottage for overnight, 8-10 persons – P1600
Tables with chairs – P100/day
Tent rental – P300, P100 if you will put up your own tent
For more info:
Our tour guides could help you too:
Very knowledgeable, honest and can be your photographer and photoshoot director, really! In fairness, he knows angles and nice spots where you can take pictures.
Contact him if you need a jeepney for large groups of people. I think he mentioned P3500-P4000 for 20 pax max from Leon town proper to campsite and back.
Wild and Free