Philippines : Day Trip from Manlia : Mount Talamitam
Mount Talamitam: Batulao’s other face
Mount Talamitam is like the little sister of Batulao. It has very gradual slopes, verdant grassland which makes you feel like lying down and have a picnic and nice viewpoints along the way. If you had done Batulao, Mount Talamitam is like doing 1 peak of Batulao, a good relaxing hike to enjoy the evening sunset or a nice place to have a picnic. Perfect for beginners!
I highly recommend doing this together with Mount Batulao as it is very close-by. You can do it as part of the Nasugbu Trilogy. You could also do it and traverse to Mount Apayang beside. For me, the best time to do Mt. Talamitam is in the afternoon or evening after doing Mount Batulao.
There is no need for a guide too as the path is very clear and obvious. It is an extremely enjoyable and relaxing 2 hours up and 1.5 hours down.
Mount Talamitam is part of the Nasugbu Trilogy challenge and where you can take on Mt. Pico De Loro, Mt. Talamitam and Mt. Batulao in two days! For more on how to do it, please read my other posts on Mount Pico De Loro and Mount Batulao!
WHAT TO BRING
Bring a cap or something for shade as it is an open grassland trek all the way. It will get really hot if the sun is directly targeting you for 2 hours. Bring some money as there is a person selling coconut water and soft drinks halfway up the trek. It will be good to bring snacks and picnic mat because I think it is a lovely place simply chill.
If you are staying for sunset, I suggest bringing a headlight as it can get dark when you are coming back through the forest parts.
HOW TO GET THERE
The start-point for Mt. Talamitam is actually located very close to the Batulao jump off point. You will most likely be taking the same bus from Manila. If coming from Manila, just ask to drop off at Sitio Bayabasan highway KM83 or say you are going to Mt Talamitam.
Tip: Most seem to suggest taking this bus. http://www.phbus.com/dltb-bus/
Getting to Mt.Talamitam
1. From Manila
0400 ETD Coastal Mall bus terminal to Nasugbu, Batangas
0700 ETA Registration area at Sitio Bayabasan, Brgy. Aga (KM. 83)
0730 Start trek
0830 Arrival at summit
1030 Start descent
1200 Back at the registration area, head to Manila
1500 ETA Manila
2. From Mt. Batulao => Recommended!
3.00 pm Take a Jeepney/Bus from Batulao to Sitio Bayabasan
3.20 pm Reach Sitio Bayabasan, the jump-off point and registration.
3.30 pm Start Trek
5.30 pm Reach the Summit
6.30 pm Descend from Summit
7.30 pm Back to the registration area. 10.00 pm ETA Manila
If you had followed my reverse route for Batulao and ended at DENR, it will be easy to ask people for a jeepney or a bus to Mt.Talamitam. It is just a short 15-minute journey. Luckily for us, we had Russell who drove us there.
Transport from Batulao (Everest) to Sitio Bayabasan – 12 php per person
Registration for Talamitam : 40php per person
Bus back to Manila: 120php per person. X2 if you are starting from Manila.
Guide: 300php (Don’t really need a guide, the route is straightforward)
The hike starts with a combination of pavement and dirt village road. The route is quite clear and wide. You will walk past villages as well as the resort if you manage to spot it.
After a while, you will reach the Talamitam River and cross it.
There are many ways to cross the Talamitam River, just remember the route!
There is the small bamboo bridge which many other bloggers take a picture of, there is the big stone bridge to cross and you could cross via small rocks and stones.
At some points, you could wade or cross the river by foot also as it is quite shallow. It all depends on at which point you cross the river.
After crossing the river, it is a short woodland trek of around 20 minutes upwards.
The terrain will suddenly break into an open grassland where you can imagine wild animals wandering and rolling lazily on a weekday afternoon.
It is a grassland of many trails and gradual slopes. From here on, there are many trail variations, just follow the trail that leads you upwards.
Once you hit the horizon, you will see Mount Talamitam beckoning in the distance. If you look behind, you can appreciate the Batangas plains with Mt. Batulao looming prominently on the horizon.
The terrain is wide, open grassland, with little trees to take shelter from. The heat of the sun can be overbearing so make sure to bring enough sun cover and liquid.
The route remains flat for awhile as though a tractor was driving past it. Start on the slope towards Mount Talamitam. I was so tempted to just lie down and relax here. You can also find people relaxing there, or selling Boku Juice (Coconut Juice) and soft drinks.
The various routes will start to merge into one final route to the summit. It will be slightly steeper, looser rocks and soil but nothing too difficult or challenging.
Keep on going for around 20 minutes and you will reach the summit!
At the summit, there is a small hut which provides a slight bit of shade.
There are dramatic views of the surrounding plains and towns such as Nasugbu, Calatagan, Batangas as well as the hills and mountains of Maragondon.
This view is further enhanced by the evening sun and clouds, therefore evening is a good time!
There is a nice out-cropping rock to take a picture. We spent some time camwhoring while waiting for sunset. We were one of the few people there in the evening.
Notable peaks which could be spotted on a clear day is Batulao to the southeast, Mt. Makiling which is partially covered by the Tagaytay ridge, Pico de Loro and the Lubang islands.
You could also traverse to Mount Apayang if you have time. It is on the other side, which you will see if you turn around from the rock picture point.
As we spent too much time relaxing at the summit waiting for sunset, we did not go to Mount Apayang.
Going back will take around an hour or less. There is a different path down, but the best way to go down is the go back the same way you came from.
We were busy enjoying the golden hour as you can see from the photos. Enjoy the sunset as it brings out the colours of the grassland.
There was a certain tranquillity in the air, a good contrast to the stifling hustle and bustle of city life in both Manila and Singapore.
Once you reach back to the flat open grassland, there might be cows grazing around. It might get confusing here as there are many paths. It would be good if you could remember the same trail you took. We could not, so we ended up going on different trails and got separated and lost.
If you end up like us, don’t worry as this mountain is a very small mountain and it is surrounded by many villages. Do not panic. You should be fine as long as you follow the path which leads downwards and towards the Talamitam river. It might not lead to the same crossing point of the river which you came from.
Ask around, if not walk along the river until you reach a place where you can cross. I ended up bashing through the forest and crossing the river by myself knee deep, only to realize that the crossing bridge was another 400m away.
Once you cross the river, follow the paved road back to the village.
After the trek, it is possible to take a shower at the registration area.
Ask around to get a bus back to Manila. You will most likely need to take a trike to the terminal before taking a bus.
Luckily for us, Russell was together with us and we drove back.
To me, climbing Mt. Talamitam is like having your dessert at the end of the meal. Mt. Batulao is the main. Since you are already in the region, to make the most of your day you might as well climb Mt. Talamitam.
It makes it a satisfying and fulfilling day for me knowing that I climbed 2 mountains in 1 day.
I would always recommend combining doing Mt. Batulao and Mt. Talamitam together as a “Twin Dayhike”.
Of course, you could have done 3 if you did Mount Apayang =)
This day-trip can be taken as part of the the Nasugbu Day Trip Trilogy challenge! Conquer Mt. Pico De Loro, Mt. Batulao and Mt. Talamitam in two days! For more on how to do it, please read my other posts on Mount Talamitam and Mount Batulao!
Here are some other links to read :