Located in Samar province, Calbayog is not a popular destination yet it has hidden gems worth exploring. I didn’t plan visiting this city but I gave it a try since I was passing through from Allen in Northern Samar going to Tacloban.
From Allen, it takes around two hours to reach Calbayog depending on the speed of the driver. There are vans plying this route although schedule is not fixed since they wait for the van to get full. Fare is 100 pesos.
I didn’t know where to go after arriving in Calbayog so I asked tricycle drivers what to see in the city. They told me to go to Mapaso hot spring which literally means hot.
The tricycle driver took me for 50 pesos to the place where I can ride a boat. The road led me to a stream where a boatman was waiting for passengers. I asked him if he could take me to the hot spring which he said yes and for only 300 pesos. I split the fare with another guy.
The boatman agreed to be our tour guide as well. The boat can take a maximum of five passengers. The ride took about 15 minutes and a hike for another 20 minutes.
The spring is natural and no was around except a few local kids. Entrance is free. The place is undeveloped there was not even a staff looking after the place. We took a dip for a good 30 minutes and the water was quite refreshing after days of long rides on the road. It’s not too hot considering the water is not treated.
The place is tucked inside the forest full of cocconut trees. The boatman called a guy and instructed him to get some coconuts for us. The coconuts are for free as well. The juice is so fresh and we only had to give a small tip.
Further down the stream is another spring called Miraculous hot spring. It is already developed like a swimming pool but entrance is still free. No one was there when we arrived and we dipped again like kids.
After our tour of the two hot springs, we already went back to the city center, walk around a bit around the city hall but there was nothing really to see except a church which is common to most towns in the Philippines.
Nearby is the terminal of Duptours Shuttle Services where they have services going to Tacloban and other cities in region eight.
Half day tour of Calbayog is definitely a must. A dip for free in a natural hot spring is an experience not to be missed. Besides, you only need to spend a few hundred pesos to enjoy before heading to your next destination.
Summary of expenses:
100 – Van from Allen to Calbayog
50 – Tricycle to the boat station
300 – Boat ride
50 – Tricycle to city center
500 – Total