Mt. Pinatubo has been in my bucket list for quite a long time. So when a close friend of mine invited us out for this day tour, of course I’d said YES!
Having been known as a dormant mountain for over hundred years until scientists from PHILVOCS and USGS predicted the timing of the eruption and its effect. They were able to evacuate people out of the area which saved thousands of lives.
However, that eruption was really unfathomable which was considered as the 2nd largest terrestrial of the 20th century; what worsened the situation was the arrival of Typhoon Yunya – the ultra-effect killed over 800 people and caused severe destruction bringing lethal mix of ash and rain to town and cities. It even reached as far as north of Russia and caused a temperature drop of 1 degree Celsius worldwide :/ a disaster felt worldwide!
Today, the volcano is still active but is strictly monitored and proclaimed as a safe tourist destination. Attracting a mixed genre of travelers; from mountaineers to socialites 🙂
Last eruption: 1993
Elevation: 1,486 m
Region: Central Luzon
Provinces: Tarlac, Zambales, Pampanga
Did you know: Pinatubo is part of a chain of volcanoes which lie along the western edge of the island of Luzon
WHAT TO DO / ACTIVITIES
WHERE TO EAT
It is safe to bring your own food and water. There’s only 1 stop to buy foods which is near the crater; they serve cup noodles but of course, it is pricey. You’ve been warned 🙂
how to get there
Mt. Pinatubo is 54 miles northwest of Manila; 3 hours ride
• Fare is at Php 200/person.
• You will have to pay for the environmental fee as well.
WHERE TO STAY
- DAY TOUR is possible, if you are coming from Manila, but you must leave as early as possible so you can return on the same day.
You can camp near the jump-off point; But I’m not sure with the rates
0230H – ETA Manila for Capas, Tarlac via NLEX
0500H – ETA Capas, Tarlac. Breakfast
0600H – ETA Brgy. Sta. Juliana; Registration
0630H – 4×4 bumpy ride
0730H – End of the ride; Start Trek
0930H – ETA crater of Mt. Pinatubo; Photo ops
1130H – Lunch
1200H – Start return trek
1400H – 4X4 ride back to jump-off
1500H – Back at the jump-off point
1520H – Return to Manila
1800H – ETA in Manila
- Swimming is not allowed in the crater since January 2013 since it has been found to contain hazardous substances
- Best time to go is during dry season from October to May
- You can wear anything comfortable J
- Trekking shoes is not a must; You can even wear your ordinary sneakers but please take note that your feet/shoes may get wet along the way
- Bring your own food and water
- Bring foods/candies/clothes for the aetas
EXPENSES (DIY TRIP)
Manila to Capas Bus Fare (roundtrip) – Php 400.00 (Php 200/way)
Tricycle rental from Capas to Sta. Juliana – Php 300.00
4×4 Rental for maximum of 5 people – Php3,000.00 (Php 600 each)
Local Guide Fee for group of five people Php500.00 (Php 100 each)
Conservation Fee – Php 300.00
TOTAL – PHP 1,700.00 each
Come visit the mountain now before the trees finally grow back in the place! It will never be the same ‘out of the world’ destinations in the coming years. Totally worth it and good travel destination for the family who wants to reconnect with nature and history at the same time 🙂