Route: Manila – Las Piñas – Tagaytay – Talisay – Laurel – Taal – Batangas
Total Distance Biked: Approximately 144 Kilometers
Maximum Elevation: 2,080 feet
Total Ascent: 4,716 feet
Total Time: 15 hours
Saddle Time: 8.5 hours (approx)
I know this is quite a late post but I believe this one is worth sharing, please bear with me for I have tons of backlogs. 🙂
The previous year was another exciting year of biking for me. Well, there were actually fewer rides compared to the earlier year but they were all epic in their own rights. The rides to Daang Hari, Silang and Tagaytay were the usual and the few higlights were the epic rides to Infanta, Nasugbu-Ternate and Tanay, and around Benguet and Ifugao.
But before the previous year ended, I and my crank brother Kenneth, hit the road once more for our year-ender. We pedaled from Manila to Taal and all the way to Batangas City via Tagaytay and Talisay. A total of 144 kilometers on a maximum elevation of 2,080 feet and total ascent of 4,716 feet.
How did our ride went? Read on! 🙂
0320H Ride Out from Manila
The city was at its deepest sleep when I started pedaling. It was a cold and cloudless early dawn of December, the stars and moon were on sight. I met Kenneth in Nagtahan ad we pedaled all the way down south. Before five in the morning, we were already in Las Pinas Bamboo Organ, with the throngs of early church goers attending the Simbang Gabi.
0515H En Route to Silang
We stopped at Zapote and had a quick rest to catch our breath. It was still a long day and we wanted to take it easy. Shortly after, we saddled and traversed Molino Road all the way to Dasmariñas, our usual route when going to Silang and Tagaytay with the usual ascening road going to the highlands of Cavite.
0755H Breakfast at Aling Pinas
We arrived in Aling Pinas Eatery in Silang, I haven’t been here since Aling Pinas passed away. Her daughters are now managing the eatery. I noticed that the ambiance is somewhat different, it was kinda quiet and sad. Maybe because it was still early and the usual crowd of bikers was still not around, in fact we were their first customer that day.
0835 To Tagaytay and Talisay
The breakfast and short rest powered us up, we started pedaling to the last six kilometer of mostly uphill to Tagaytay. We reached the city after a little over half an hour. It was a clear and sunny day, Taal Volcano was clearly visible from our vantage point. We headed to Tagaytay Rotonda and took the steep downhill of Tagaytay-Talisay Road going to Talisay. The route is known in cycling community as Sampaloc Road, a treacherous 12-kilometer of challenging zigzags. Going down from Tagaytay to Talisay via this route maybe a joy ride, but the reverse route is a different story. Thankfully, we were only for the downhill as we were planning to hit the circumferential lakeside road to Taal town.
0950H Early Lunch at Talisay
I wasn’t so keen on taking an early lunch since we just had our breakfast in Silang but Ken insisted. He stopped in Valentino’s Eatery in Sampaloc, Talisay and ordered a pork binagoongan. He said it is the best binagoongan he has ever tasted but I opted for a lomi. I was clueless on this eatery but Ken looked so excited. As soon as his order arrived, he asked me to taste it and alas, the pork binagoongan got me on my first nibble. So I ended up ordering one! 🙂
1040H The Ascending Road of Talisay and Laurel
Halfway to our target destination, we continued rolling along the circumferential road of Taal Lake, with the great view of Taal Volcano on our left. We encountered surprise uphill roads in Talisay and Laurel that burned our power lunch. By noon we were already in the town of Agoncillo, with some minor ascends that guaranteed recoveries. We stopped in the village of Baniaga for a quick refreshment. There were patches of rough road in Agoncillo but construction was in full blast, they are probably paved by now.
1410H Hello Lemery!
Finally, we reached Lemery, where the road was mostly flat. Taal was just nearby!
1430H Taal Heritage Town
Eleven hours after we left Manila, we arrived in Taal Heritage Town. Our grand destination was the beautiful and massive St. Martin de Tours Basilica, which said to be the biggest Catholic church in Asia. It wasn’t my first time to see the church but I was still amazed of its grandeur.
1535H Going Home
With more than 100-kilometer distance from home, we left Taal and headed eastward towards Lipa. It was still a long way to Manila, we were already tired and yet the gradually ascending road to Alitagtag was incessantly burning our energy. We stopped in Alitagtag after an hour of pedaling from Taal, and it was then that we decided to bail out. It was slowly getting dark and there were a lot of buses along the road, biking all the way to Manila would be hard and risky.
1650H Rolling Down to Bauan and Batangas City
So we took a detour southwards towards Bauan en route to Batangas City. It was a sweet reward with the long stretch of downhill from Muzon to Bauan.
1820H Batangas City Bus Terminal
It was already dark when we reached Batangas City Bus Terminal. We loaded our bikes in one of the Pasay bound buses that left shortly after. Two and a half hours passed and we were back in the Metropolis.