Sorsogon Road Trip: Bulusan

From Barcelona, jeepneys bound for Gubat and Bulusan pass by just in front of St. Joseph Church, one of the oldest churches in Bicol Region. Our little group wrapped it up and readied ourselves for the next leg of our day trip – Bulusan.

Bulusan is home to one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines – Mt Bulusan and this is our next destination for this day. We arrived at Bulusan town proper and while it is still early, we looked for a place where we can get our brunch. After a hearty meal, we took a tricycle that will take us to Bulusan National Park.

I’ve been here many years ago, I was around 10 years old back then and I was able to go around the lake with my friends without us knowing where it was leading us. We registered and soon started our trek. We felt really proud that Teloy is comfortable with the surrounding vegetation and never complained about the long walk. There were several rest area around the lake but most of them were already in ruins. Me and Baba couldn’t help but compare tourism efforts in other places we have visited.

Still, Bulusan Lake is enchanting and charming than ever. I remembered seeing shrimp swimming near the rocks and there are still plenty of them even today. The place was very peaceful and all you can hear are the sounds of the wind and the birds. We passed by one or two men quietly fishing as if they too hesitate in breaking the calm. You see green everywhere you look, there’s lush green forests that surrounds an emerald green waters. It looked so deep, you’d feel kinda creepy sometimes when you try to imagine what creatures might be lurking underneath!

We arrived back at the entrance and rested for a while. I appreciate the new additions that the management are trying to introduce though the park’s upkeep still lacks a bit. There are kayaks and other water vehicle you can try out to explore the lake. They also offer climb packages for those interest to scale the mysterious Bulusan Volcano.

The trek was tiring, but we still have one more destination for this day trip and it’s going to be a wonderful, soothing and relaxing end to this roughly planned trip.

Sorsogon Road Trip: Barcelona, Sorsogon

While the school year is still ongoing and the travel fund is slim, we with our little tot are limited to weekend exploration and day trip adventures. Good thing Bicol Region has a lot of nook and corners that we have yet to explore.

Sorsogon City is only an hour away from Daraga, Albay so it sounds like a day trip is convenient enough for us. Oh we were wrong! The province of Sorsogon is indeed blessed with natural wonders and beautiful sights to behold, but of course, you have to go off the beaten track to discover them. So from the city, we headed to Barcelona, a municipality that is one hour away from the city. 
The municipality of Barcelona is located in the eastern shores of Sorsogon and is surrounded by the municipalities of Gubat, Bulusan and Casiguran. Being fond of old churches, we specifically chose this route to see one of the oldest churches in Bicol, the St. Joseph the Worker Parish which now called the Barcelona Church. It was constructed using coral stones, egg whites and “tuba.” It is an imposing structure with the original facade and the belfry though several restoration efforts in the church interiors were apparent.

Barcelona Church faces the sea and a small park where ruins of the late Presidencia Building and which were once used by the Spanish. Being close to the sea, it was destroyed during the Japanese occupation. This day, what appears to be a busy port during those days still exists but now it has become a silent onlooker to busy fisherfolks and youngsters passing time at the park.

After taking pictures and resting under the trees in Barcelona Church’s yard, our little group decided to pushed on to our next destination and continue with our exploration in – Bulusan.