Peñablanca-Callao Cave Rd., Peñablanca, Cagayan
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The moment I saw this place in John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo's movie (The Mistress), I automatically fell in love with it. I was thinking the cave was just a man made set. I was wrong. It's a cave somewhere in Tuguegarao. But if only I knew that Tuguegarao is a 12-hour drive from home.
Anyway, upon reaching Tuguegarao city proper, you need to drive atleast 30 minutes to get here. The waze instructed us to take the road all the way to the cave entrance but the way going there was not passable. There's a landslide and only motorcycle and other small vehicles can pass. So we took the other way. We passed a rocky area (about quarter km only). Its like a small river where small amount of water flows. Other than that obstacle, we reached the Aeta community where we parked our car. We walked all the way to the other side of Pinacanauan River.
To reach the cave, you must ride a boat to cross the river. Boat fee is Php 20 per person. It's a 2 minute ride only. We only pay 20 pesos entrance fee per head and then the cashier introduced us to our guide. I forgot her name but she's a college student where she work as a cave guide on her free time. There's no minimum fee for the guides. You may give them how much you want. In our case, we gave her Php 200.
This cave is very different from the other caves. As what I read before, if you're a spelunker, you may rate it as easy 5/10. We took about 184 steps to reach the cave entrance. The cave consists of 9 chambers in which only 7 chambers is open to the public. My favorite was the chamber where the chapel sits and there's a natural hole above in which if Mr. Sun is up, it will illuminate the altar. The guide said there were I think 6 pairs who got married in this place. I wonder how it feels to tie a knot in this enchanted chapel.
The cave was very magical to me. Worth every effort! After our tour, we had their special halo-halo for only Php25. It has malagkit rice inside, together with the regular halo-halo ingredients and caramel sauce on top. We also bought Chicharabao (Chicharon ng Kalabaw). Hubby loved it! Overall, our caving experience was good. Locals were nice. Will definitely be back if God permits.
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Callao Cave was my first caving experience during our Cagayan tour with my colleagues and for me it was the highlight of our tour. With its massive limestones, skylight and chapel, Callao Cave is truly a must-see destination in our country. Did you know that the oldest remains were found in Callao Cave and is called the Callao Man? It is 20,000 years older than the Tabon Man in Palawan, making Cagayan as the "Cradle of the Philippine Civilization". I would also like to mention how good the local tour guides of this place because they are all well-trained, very accommodating, and I learned a lot from them about the place. I was really amazed amazed with these guides, who are mostly kids, because they are like professional photographers. They know how to use different phones and cameras with the perfect exposure, lighting and all, in taking our photos inside the cave. #ItsMoreFunInThePhilippines
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The Callao Cave is one of the largest cave systems in the Philippines. It can be found at the Sierra Madre Mountain Range in Peñablanca, Cagayan. It is so massive, it covers two barangays!
A mere 30 minute drive from the provincial capital Tuguegarao City, the cave system has a total of nine enormous chambers, seven of which are open to tourists and visitors.
Of its seven open chambers, five of them have natural skylights which let in sunlight all the way to the cave floor. The most famous chamber would have to be The Chapel, so named because of a rock formation resembling a figure of the revered mother and child.
In 2007, the cave was at the forefront of the national spotlight when Filipino archeologist Armand Salvador Mijares and his team discovered fossilized human remains dating to 67,000 years. That's 20,000 years older than the one found in the Tabon Cave of Palawan which was thought as the first inhabitants of the Philippine archipelago.
Callao Cave is very easy to explore but requires a little test of endurance as you need to go up close to 200 steps before reaching the entrance. The view on the way up is spectacular, though. And there a number of "rest stops" along the stairway.
The best time to be at the cave is from 10AM to 2PM, when sunlight filters through the natural skylights, illuminating the majestic limestone formations.
The Callao Cave is a must visit if you find yourself in the Cagayan province.
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Really wanted to go here as soon as possible the moment my History of Architecture professor showed us his photos of the beautiful Callao Cave. Luckily, I got a chance to visit this place May of this year. You'll need to ride a Tuguegarao bound bus for 10-12 hours and ride a tricycle after in order to reach this place.
Callao Cave's historically popular because it's where a Callao Man's remains were found (oldest one in the country and one of the earliest in Asia Pacific, if scientifically proven as remain of a homo sapien). The remains were already 67,000 years old, too when it was discovered year 2007.
The cave consists of seven chambers with natural openings which give its tourists a really spectacular view. One of the cave's chamber is presently functioning as a chapel where there's a weekly Celebration of the Holy Eucharist. Weddings have also been done here!
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Going to Callao Cave you could take a tricycle ride up to the river bank of Peñablanca. The trike ride was quite long and there are times you could hear the motor of the tricycle crying due to the stiff uphill climb. The trike charged our group 400php per tricycle which carry 4 passenger. They will wait for you outside until you finish the callao cave tour.
In callao cave we were guided by Andoy. He is the youngest tour guide when he started guiding people into the cave. His life story was also shown in MMK and there are some poster displayed at the entrance lobby of callao cave. He was very informative and really know his craft. He also shared to us some of his story how he started. His life is an inspiration that everything can be overcome by hardwork and determination. Callao Cave is also a familiar landmark to people that were able to see the movie The Mistress by Bea Alonzo.
The cave consist of seven chamber and there are some cool rock formation inside. Inside you just let your imagination flow to be able to imagine what those rock formation looks like. Also inside the cave is a beautiful small chapel. The skylight shinning inside the cave gave the altar more drama.
After exploring the cave just outside is the penablanca river. Perfect for a nice sunset pictorial. The bright orange reflection of the sunset was so relaxing and a great way to end the trip.
Overall the cave is amazing and you'll learn a lot about the culture of the early filipino's. The tour guide are also actually free they just rely on your donation. So just be generous since they are really a great guide and excellent photographer.
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Beautiful! The cave has 7 chambers but we only got to the 5th. There are several crevices that allows in sunlight which illuminates the cave. There's also a chapel inside (1st chamber).
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After 12-14 hours of land travel, we finally reached Cagayan Province. Our first stop is the famous Callao Cave in Peñablanca. The Spaniards named this town as Peñablanca, “peña” means rocky outcrop and “blanca” means white.
There are more than 300 caves in Cagayan but only 75 are documented, the other 225 are still unexplored.
Our tour guide is so jolly and funny, she explained everything to us.
In order to reach the Callao cave you need to climb 183 steps which is quite a challenge for some but I tell you that it’s definitely worth it! determination!
Callao cave is consists of seven chambers, each chambers were named after a distinct rock formations within the chamber.
Some of the chamber are called as Cream Room, because there are rocks that looks like 3 scoops of ice cream (pandan flavor, cream flavor and a combination) hehe :) the tour guides are witty enough to explain and point out those ice cream.
There is Sun Room️, huge overhead opening where the light illuminates the area. Next is the Divine Room, a chamber that has rock formation resembling the figure of mother and child. We also saw some animals within the chambers haha, there are merlion, lion, boa and angels, the three kings and many more. You just have to work on your imagination in order to appreciate it!
I love Callao Cave, it was divine, breath taking, and magical. Im so happy that I get to experience this place!
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