A trip to Tagaytay was the best thing I ever did this October. I missed traveling lately and it’s been a while since I got a chance to go on an escapade. So, since I’m celebrating my birthday this month, I chose to do pocket celebrations with some close friends, with an out-of-town trip, that is.
My idea of a relaxing birthday bash/travel celeb is a simple road+food trip+lots of chatter time. That’s what I did with my pals. I didn’t bat an eyelash when one of them said: “Tara, Tagaytay tayo (Come on, let’s go to Tagaytay).” Besides, I have no excuse, since its so near my hometown. Plus, there’s no need to devise an itinerary.
The blast of fresh, cold air was pure heaven as we rolled down the car windows. I’ve passed through Tagaytay many times, but I still forget the cold fog in Tagaytay can be fierce. Good thing, I’m prepared with a shawl. Still, I wouldn’t trade this city’s fresh ambiance to Metro Manila’s congested atmosphere.
Actually, the primary reason why my friends and I wanted to go to Tagaytay is because we’re craving for”bulalo” –the Pinoy’s classic version of beef shank clear soup. Nothing beats the original, they say, so if you want an authentic “bulalo” or “bulalohan” experience, then you should come here. There are rows and rows of restaurants here that serve this fresh, yummy beef soup. It’s not hard to find the so-called “bulalo belt” –a strip of restaurants that serve this specialty when you drive by the rotunda all the way to Alfonso, Cavite.
We opted for Mer-Ben Tapsilog that’s been featured a lot of times on TV. Don’t get it wrong, they serve the popular Filipino all-day breakfast fare of “tapsilog” but they also serve “bulalo.” We settled in one of the “kubo” down the restaurant and ordered one extra special “bulalo” (good for 3-4 persons), lots of rice, “adobong kangkong,” and fried “tawilis.” Sorry, I don’t have my own photo of the place. My mobile phone was drained the night we arrived in the city.
After dinner, we headed to Starbucks –the one with a very steep parking space! It’s a great place to chat and hang out with friends over coffee and bannoffee pie.
The following day, after checking out from our hotel, we headed off to Sonya’s Garden for a lunch buffet. I’ve been badgering everyone in the group to a lunch at Sonya’s, ‘coz only I haven’t been here. And I’m glad we chose this resto as they offer refreshing and very healthy meals–far from the usual staple and fast-food meal in Manila.
It’s very refreshing to be at Sonya’s, the food is simple but very nourishing. I like the idea of their tarragon tea. It’s just a few small leaves placed in a hot cup of water. Good thing, I was able to reserve the roast chicken the night before we came to the restaurant. We didn’t have to wait long for our order to come. Check out their ultra fresh garden salad and try it over “very special” balsamic vinegar. The bread is absolutely superb. They didn’t have rice but there’s pasta at the buffet table. But I figured, after almost finishing off the salad, I was already full.
But the best thing about our stay here is the garden. I literally stopped to see and smell the flowers. I wish I can live in a place like this forever…
I thought we’re done after visiting Sonya’s but my friends decided to go a little farther to Batangas to go to Caleruega Church for more nature-tripping. I’m glad they thought of it, because the view and the place is absolutely breathtaking.
I was dragging my feet back to the car when it was time to go. My friend said we need to beat the traffic and rightly so, since it’s a weekend and a lot of people are coming to Tagaytay too for a quick quality time with their families. I hope I can visit this place again soon enough and have more time to commune with nature.