Masungi Georeserve Adventure

Where is Masungi Georeserve?

Masungi Georeserve is a conservation area and a rustic rock garden found in the rainforests of Tanay, Rizal, Philippines. Masungi derived its name from “Masungki”, a Filipino word meaning “spiky”. (Masungi Georeserve)¹ The ultimate attraction of Masungi is the spiky rock formations that are found all over the conservation area. The whole conservation area consists of the discovery trail, which is the only area accessible to visitors, and the remaining areas of the untouched rainforest which is restricted to the public.

Masungi Georeserve Trail Entrance

Masungi Discovery Trail Entrance. Photo from Immay Gacuya

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Along with the beautiful rock structures, there are varieties of trees, plants, shrubs, grass, flowers and animals living in the area.  The animals are left loose in the whole conservation area, but these animals stay away from areas where they detect the presence of visitors.

Masungi Georeserve has been proud of protecting the conservation area for fifteen (15) years until now, to preserve the area from illegal logging, quarrying, etc. According to the georeserve tour guide, preserving the place is a very tough yet fulfilling purpose because many have supported their petition to conserve the area. They have built tourist-attraction sites within the place (the discovery trail) for the purpose of fund raising for its conservation. The discovery trail consists of the following attractions (Masungi Georeserve):

  1. Sapot (Spider Web)
  2. Patak, Duyan at Ditse
  3. Yungib ni Ruben
  4. Tatay
  5. Nanay
  6. Liwasan

People who are planning to visit the discovery trail must first make a reservation in Masungi’s website: http://www.masungigeoreserve.com. The fees, available schedules and many more information are found in their website.

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Welcome to the Masungi Rain forest

All trail visitors will be accompanied to the “Silungan”, their guest briefing area. They have two trek sessions each day: the morning (8am-12nn) and afternoon (1pm—5pm) sessions. The overall trek usually takes about 3-4 hours to complete.

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A fresh overlooking view before the start of the trail. Photo taken by Cherielyn Lopez

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Each visitor will be given an “adventure kit”. It consists of a helmet, individual mineral water bottles and a sling backpack where you can put your possessions like cameras, phones, wallet, food and other valuables. The sling back pack is designed as simple and comfortable to suit the trail that you will be trekking on.

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The whole atmosphere of Masungi is clean and fresh, showing nature’s untouched beauty. The famous masungki rocks will keep you company as you continue the twists and turns, ups and downs along the trail.

The rock formations may sometimes amaze you, or scare you.

Inside the discovery trail…

SAPOT
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Sapot is a Filipino word for spider web. The whole Sapot is made up of strong, webbed wires creating a spider web on top of huge, spiky rocks in which you will have a fantastic view of Sierra Madre and the country’s largest lake, Laguna de Bay. To add more adventure, you will first cross a webbed pathway in order to go to the Sapot.

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The Sapot is big and strong enough to accommodate up to ten (10) people at once.

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You will not get bored trekking around Masungi. Like this big, round swing we found along the way to our next stop.  Four people can ride together in the swing. It’s a perfect way to take a rest just for a while before resuming the trek, and get a chance to just look around the place.

PATAK, DITSE and DUYAN

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Another exciting attraction is the Patak, Ditse, and Duyan which are all found up in the sky. This stop consists of a giant air house, hanging bridge and giant hammock, respectively, which will give you a beautiful view upwards, sidewards and downwards!

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Inside the Air House. Photo by Kevin Soriao

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The air house is beautifully designed, made up of bamboo wood and finished off with glass windows where you can watch over the beautiful view outside. You’ll never run out of green trees, lush mountains and its famous huge, spiky, gray stones that surround the area.

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The Giant Duyan. Photo by Kevin Soriao

The giant Duyan, made up of white and thick criss-crossed ropes, is one of the most favorite stop of visitors in the discovery trail. Spanning a hundred meters long, this massive, aerial hammock can accommodate up to forty-two (42) people simultaneously, according to the tour guide. That’s how strong the giant Duyan is! You might as well relax and not be afraid of falling down, as the Duyan cuddles you above its green, luscious trees and mountains.

NANAY at TATAY

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Nanay and Tatay are two well-known Filipino words for “mother” and “father”, respectively. The Nanay and Tatay are the two highest mountain peaks in the area and they are not your usual mountain tops. The summits are both beautifully designed by really huge masungki limestones, other rock formations, trees, plants and staircases which lead to a higher elevation and view of the place.

Nanay and Tatay are two beautiful garden terraces at the top of a mountain.

After trekking strenuously for hours, at the last stop of the trail, awaits a beautiful garden where you can enjoy free complimentary snacks and drinks – the Liwasan, is just relaxing.

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Liwasan. Photo by Che Lopez

Here is a photo of a unique flower we found in the Liwasan.

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Photo by Che Lopez

2017 UPDATE: Additions to the Masungi Georeserve discovery trail!!!

We visited Masungi Georeserve on June 2016. Since then, the Georeserve has added new, beautiful attractions in the trail. These are the:

  • Silayan
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Silayan. 10 May 2017. Photo retrieved from Masungi Georeserve official Facebook account June 2017

Masungi Georeserve has now opened their restaurant in the conservation area! According to their website, their menu offers food of local and indigenous ingredients, the aim of which to provide a steady market for local farmers and producers of fresh, organic products while serving native, delicious meals to the visitors. (Masungi Georeserve)  I just can’t wait to visit Masungi again and try their unique menus!

  • Barangay Dahon

Barangay Dahon. 8 May 2017. Photo retrieved from Masungi Georeserve official Facebook and Instagram account June 2017

Can’t get enough of ropes, swings and hammocks? Barangay Dahon will offer you a relaxing place where a collection of swings and hammocks await you! This instagram-worthy stop sure is dreamy and perfect for a stopover while inside the discovery trail.

Masungi Trekking Overall Feeling

Masungi is worth trekking for. Besides helping the whole Masungi Georeserve in the conservation of the area, you will be amazed beyond tiredness at nature. Inspiration will also come from the passionate team who are protecting this area. They are driven and fully committed to the preservation of rainforests like this, so that the future generations can also see the beautiful surroundings that God has created for all of us.

As stewards of all creation, we should have the same commitment in the preservation of our environment, whether in rural or urban areas. Each one of us can contribute in our own little ways. Every small deed can contribute to a bigger whole, and Mother Nature will thank us for it.

What you think of Masungi Georeserve? For me, I’ll definitely come again with some of my friends who  haven’t been there before! (and to check out their new attractions, of course. 😉 ) Pictures posted here will not be enough to showcase the place’s beauty!

Cheers,

shar

My Sources:

¹Masungi Georeserve – http://www.masungigeoreserve.com (n.d.). Retrieved January 2017

Masungi Georeserve Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/masungigeoreserve

Masungi Georeserve Instagram – http://www.instagram.com/masungigeoreserve

 

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