The week had been so exhausting but my weekend was left unfilled. So although I was a bit exhausted and stayed up quite late, I made sure I had a plan in mind about where I would spend my weekend.
Since the week before that I visited Balite Falls in Cavite, I decided to tour around Laguna to follow CALABARZON. I chanced upon the seven lakes in San Pablo, so off I went from Pasig to Cubao and rode a bus to Quezon that would pass by San Pablo, Laguna.
After about two hours, I arrived at San Pablo Medical Center and had a quick lunch, then hailed a tricycle that took me to Sampaloc Lake.
Sampaloc Lake: The Park
Sampaloc Lake is the one nearest the municipal hall of San Pablo. It has been converted to a park where one could simply chill or ride a bangka (boat), balsa, or a pedaled boat.
Food stalls are abundant here as well.
Bunot Lake: Residential Area
From Sampaloc Lake, charter a tricycle to bring you to Bunot Lake. Jeepneys to Nagcarlan pass by this place, but there are no jeepneys from Sampaloc Lake, so it’s still best to ride a tricycle. Also, it would take about a five to ten minute walk from the highway to the lake, or vice versa.
Bunot Lake is primarily a part of a residential area, so one might get a bit uncertain as to what direction to take. There is one hut where visitors could stay and chill.
Pandin Lake has recently been a tourist destination. According to a tricycle driver I talked to, Pandin was cleaned up until it has become a source of living for the residents.
One could ride a jeep to Nagcarlan and drop by Pandin Lake. By the highway, young kids would offer to guide you to the lake proper. There are no fixed rates for this, but this helps them secure their weekly baon.
From the highway, there is about a fifteen to twenty minute trek, passing by residential lands, to grasslands, up the hill, then down to the lake. Gerby, the young kid who led the way to the lake, told me there are snakes further up the hill, so better not get lost out there.
One could also trek further to Yambo Lake. However, Gerby thought that the only way to the twin lake was by riding a balsa, which I didn’t do to save up because riding the balsa would cost about 500php.
P.S.: Somehow, I’m contemplating on having a kid as a guide because this resembles child labor, but on the other hand, you ask them nothing but company, and you are able to help them significantly.
Palakpakin Lake: The River-like lake
From the Twin lakes, I walked to the nearest corner and hired a tricycle to take me to both Palakpakin and Mohikap Lake. Jeepneys do not pass by these areas.
Palakpakin Lake looked like a river especially with the presence of the dike. But among the lakes, it reflected the sky most wonderfully.
Mohikap Lake: The Hidden Lake
For me, Mohikap Lake is the most stunning of them all. Surrounded by mangroves and sheltered by the two mountains, which I think are Mt. Cristobal and Mt. Banahaw, the lake is not touched by cool air.
The lake area has not been developed other than the steep stairways to it, so there isn’t any place for someone who’d like to marvel at the scenic lake
How to get there:
Ride a bus (Jac Liner, JAM Liner, Lucena Lines), from Cubao and alight at San Pablo Medical Center, San Pablo, Laguna. From there, ride a tricycle to Sampaloc Lake. This was where the road trip began.
135 Bus Fare from Cubao to San Pablo
050 Tricycle Fare from San Pablo Medical Center to Sampaloc Lake
050 Tricycle Fare from Sampaloc Lake to Bunot Lake
010 Jeepney Fare from Bunot Lake to Kalibuto Lake
007 Jeepney Fare from Kalibuto Lake to Pandin Lake
200 Tricycle Fare from Pandin Lake to Palakpakin Lake to Mohikap Lake to San Pablo City proper
007 Jeepney Fare from San Pablo City proper to SM City San Pablo
120 Bus Fare from San Pablo to Ortigas
TOTAL DAMAGE: 579 for solo travellers
The Seven Lakes of San Pablo
- Sampaloc Lake
- Bunot Lake
- Kalibato Lake (where, in the middle of my trek, I turned around to go back to the highway because the trek is long and the way is in the middle of high talahiban, which is quite dangerous for a solo traveller)
- Pandin Lake
- Yambo Lake
- Palakpakin Lake
- Mohikap Lake