While we’re still far from returning to a quarantine classification that allows domestic travel—specifically for areas in the National Capital Region (NCR) and parts of Calabarzon—what you can do now is plan your much-awaited trip. 

With all the documentation and paperwork out of your way, you’ll only have to think about having fun and relaxing while on vacation. 

If you’re still undecided on a place to visit, we recommend looking at Laguna. The area is situated near NCR and is only 2 hours and 24 minutes away if you take the South Luzon Expressway or the Pan Philippines Highway. 

Besides the convenience that it offers, the provincial city is also home to a slew of tourist spots! And if you want to know which ones are worth visiting, just keep scrolling to see our list!

  • Heritage Town of Pila

Photo by Elmer B. Domingo via Wikipedia

If you’re someone invested in history and culture, the perfect spot to visit in Laguna would be the Heritage Town of Pila. 

Here, you’ll be transported back to the Philippines’ Spanish era – filled with the traditional ancestral homes of the Filipino elite.

Due to its marvelously preserved architectural history, Pila was declared as a National Historical Landmark by the National Historical Institute in May 2000. 

  • Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery

Photo by Obra19 via Wikipedia

Another not-to-miss historical gem in Laguna is the Nagcarlan Underground cemetery. 

The burial ground, which was built by Franciscan missionaries in 1851, was supposedly used by Filipino revolutionaries as a hideout from the Spanish colonizers. Here, they plotted missions to overthrow the foreign powers. 

Due to its historical significance, it was, too, declared as a National Historical Landmark by the National Historical Institue. 

  • Museo ni Jose Rizal – Calamba

Photo from NHCP’s Official Facebook Page

If those two previous locations did not satisfy the history buff in you, then you should try visiting the Museo ni Jose Rizal in Calamba. 

The site, situated in the national hero’s hometown, houses different memorabilia significant to Rizal’s life. It also features six galleries that go in-depth into his upbringing, education, and eventual death. And it’s all being kept inside a replica of Rizal’s childhood home located between Mercado and Rizal Street in Calamba. 

  • Hidden Valley Springs

Photo from Hidden Valley Springs Official Instagram Page

If that journey through Philippine history tired you out, then the only logical place to visit next is Hidden Valley Springs. 

Located deep between Calauan in Laguna, this wonder of nature will surely bring peace and calmness to your weary bones. On top of this, you’ll be able to spend more time with your family immersed in traditional Filipino cooking and delicacies available throughout the spot. 

  • Pagsanjan Falls

Photo by GHFund via Wikipedia

If that didn’t hit the spot, why not go for a second swim at Pagsanjan Falls? The falls, also known as Cavinti Falls to locals, is among the most popular tourist destinations in Laguna and is known all over the Philippines as a sight worth beholding. 

The area is not short on tour packages, so you can book one ahead of time. By doing this, you get to enjoy all the things that this gem of nature has to offer. 

  • Mt. Makiling

Photo by Ramon F. Velasquez via Wikipedia

Talking about nature, if you’re someone who enjoys hiking and other physically stimulating activities, then why not trek at Mt. Makiling? 

Named after the popular legend of Maria Makiling, this mountain does not pale in comparison to other mountain destinations in the country, specifically for its rich forest and greenery.

  • Paete

Photo by Ramon F. Velasquez via Wikipedia

Photo by Carl Joseph Moskito via Wikipedia

If you’re all about art these days, why not native Filipino works? In Paete, there is no shortage of artisans, especially when it comes to woodwork. It’s not called the ‘Carving Capital of the Philippines’ for no reason, after all. 

Here, you’ll also be able to enjoy architectural marvels of the past through antique churches present throughout the city.

Travel Tips

With the pandemic still looming over the Philippines and the threat of its Delta variant still present, we recommend taking extra caution when traveling to different areas in the country. 

It’s also a must to do in-depth research on the places you’d be visiting, especially if they’re accommodating tourists at this time. Just call in and ask, there’s no harm in inquiring after all. 

And most important of all, keep yourself safe at all times! Follow health guidelines strictly – this way you’ll be able to help communities who rely on tourism for their livelihood without endangering others.

Want more news like this one? Head over to Nation Builder PH Travel Section for the latest updates.