Masungi Georeserve gained popularity last year as photos of its spider web-like viewing platform and cargo net obstacle courses spread online.
Millennials and thrill-seekers were quick to check out the place and snap their own Instagram-worthy photos.
Recently, we visited the place and saw for our own eyes why the conservation area was fully booked even on weekdays.
Below are our top seven reasons to visit the place:
1. It is perfect for city dwellers looking for adventure or those seeking to commune with nature
The main draw of Masungi Georeserve, which got its name from “masungki” or “spiked” (in English) limestone outcrops, is its “attractions” along the three- or four-hour trail.
Unlike other hiking trails, it features rope courses for adventure-seekers. City dwellers with sedentary lifestyles can challenge themselves by finishing the obstacle course-inspired attractions and overcoming their fear of heights.
Among the most popular attractions are the “Sapot” or spider’s web, which gives you a breathtaking view of Laguna de Bay, and “Duyan,” which is a large hammock.
Harnesses are not provided and for those who have a healthy fear of heights, expect to go weak at the knees while going up or down the cargo net courses, which are several feet high.
The adrenaline rush is part of the experience, as well as being lashed by strong winds on top of the viewing decks “Nanay” and “Tatay.”
2. It promotes protection of the environment
The georeserve itself is a conservation area that is now protected from illegal loggers and quarries. Visiting Masungi, which is a safe haven for some endangered tree species, helps promote such conservation efforts.
The georeserve, however, continues to face challenges such as landgrabbing.
3. It’s a good workout
You’ll definitely burn calories by going up and down the trail and attractions of Masungi. Depending on how fast your group moves, you could end up walking for three to four hours.
Your arms will also get their fair share of exercise as you grab onto the nets going up or down the attractions.
Make sure to wear sunblock and comfortable clothes made from breathable fabrics.
4. You will learn about limestone and trees
Park rangers will point out interesting parts of the trail, explaining how they were made or named. They will also share information about the caves, trees and animals that live in the area. Asking them about the park will help you learn more about nature and the rich biodiversity of the Philippines.
5. It creates jobs for local residents and indigenous peoples
Many of the park rangers and workers at Masungi are from the local communities and indigenous groups.
Recently, the georeserve opened its restaurant called “Silayan.” Environment Secretary Gina Lopez, who attended its soft opening last week, raved about the staff’s hospitality and the delicious local dishes cooked by Dumagats.
The restaurant requires a reservation although trail guests need not worry if they forget since light snacks are provided at the end of the trail.
6. It’s Instagram-worthy
This is quite obvious since Masungi Georeserve first became viral because of its picture-worthy trail.
“Sapot” and “Duyan,” both cargo net attractions, are the most popular. They are perfect for unique and unforgettable barkada pics and #squadgoals posts.
It’s also a great way to show people that you are not afraid of heights or at least willing to forego that fear for such breathtaking photos.
7. They will have new attractions in the coming months
When we visited last time, people were working on a new rope bridge, which the park will hopefully launch this year. Our park ranger said they continue to expand and introduce new attractions for the enjoyment of their guests.