Backpacking Legazpi City & Naga City

Originally, my plan is just to visit Caramoan Islands. However, Cebu Pacific Air does not have a seat sale from Manila to Naga on the date I have chosen. I have searched online and found out that there is an airport in Legazpi City which is just about 2 hours bus ride. Surprisingly, Mayon Volcano is located near Legazpi City, which made me decide to do a city tour in Legazpi City before going to Naga City for Caramoan Islands.

The airport in Legazpi City looks like it is within a subdivision. I mean, just outside the airport is a residential area. Unlike with other airports I have seen, you need to walk few meters away from the airport before you can see houses.

When I arrived at the airport in Legazpi City, I asked the guard about commuting to Ligñon Hill Nature Park. He told me that I can ride a tricycle going there. There are tricycles inside the premises of the airport but few steps from the airport, you can hire a tricycle which will save you about 40% of the rate from the airport tricycles.

A Cebu Pacific Air airbus at the Legazpi International Airport. A windy and cloudy day made the Mayon Volcano hidden in the clouds.

A Cebu Pacific Air airbus at the Legazpi International Airport. A windy and cloudy day made the Mayon Volcano hidden in the clouds.

Tricycles are not allowed to go up the hill so I walked towards the top of the hill. I have met a couple from Batangas who work in Manila. I invited them to go with me. As we go up to the hill, we took some photos, selfies and groupies. I also met a group of teenagers from Sorsogon City.

A marker of Ligñon Hill Nature Park. It is one of the tourist attraction in Albay. This is a perfect spot where you can view the Mayon Volcano and the runway of Legazpi International Airport.

A marker of Ligñon Hill Nature Park. It is one of the tourist attraction in Albay. This is a perfect spot where you can view the Mayon Volcano and the runway of Legazpi International Airport.

It looks like a clubhouse in Ligñon Hill Nature Park.

It looks like a clubhouse in Ligñon Hill Nature Park.

After few minutes at the top of the hill, we decided to go to the Cagsawa Ruins. The weather was not cooperative. It was cloudy that day. I did not have a full view of Mayon Volcano. Nevertheless, the experience is still worth it. After all, I can always go back there.

We went back to the main road. The Cagsawa Ruins drop-off point is a 2 jeepney rides away from the drop-off point of Ligñon Hill Nature Park. Albay Park and Wildlife is just a walking distance from Ligñon Hill Nature Park but it was under renovation when I went there.

A marker at the drop-off point for Cagsawa Ruins.

A marker at the drop-off point for Cagsawa Ruins.

From the drop-off point of Cagsawa Ruins, we just walked towards the attraction. Of course, we had some photos at the drop-off point. We also took photos of the bell fry. Mayon volcano was still covered by clouds. We stayed there for few minutes. I tasted Albay’s Chili Ice Cream and bought some pasalubong, which is a Filipino tradition of travelers bringing anything like souvenirs or foods from their destination to people back home. The couple and I have separated from Cagsawa Ruins.

Galeria de Cagsawa. By the sound of it, this is probably a photo gallery museum of Cagsawa. This is located within the vicinity of Cagsawa Ruins. We did not go inside as it seems closed that day.

Galeria de Cagsawa. By the sound of it, this is probably a photo gallery museum of Cagsawa. This is located within the vicinity of Cagsawa Ruins. We did not go inside as it seems closed that day.

Pasalubong stores at the side of Cagsawa Ruins. You may buy your pasalubong or presents to your loved ones here. We tasted their Chili Ice Cream.

Pasalubong stores at the side of Cagsawa Ruins. You may buy your pasalubong or presents to your loved ones here. We tasted their Chili Ice Cream.

With Joseph Reyes and his partner, Sheng Hipolito, who are fellow travelers at the Cagsawa Ruins from Manila.

With Joseph Reyes and his partner, Sheng Hipolito, who are fellow travelers at the Cagsawa Ruins from Manila.

I went to the city proper to check Peñaranda Park and Embarcadero de Legazpi. If you have time to kill, you may want to check these places. Embarcadero de Legazpi is basically a mall. From there, I rode a tricycle get a bus a ride to Naga City in Legazpi Grand Central Terminal, which is within the LKY Metro Transport and Lifestyle Hub.

At the Peñarada Park, where you can get a view of the City Hall and Provincial Capitol.

At the Peñarada Park, where you can get a view of the City Hall and Provincial Capitol.

Embarcadero de Legazpi, where you can get a view of the bay and grab a meal.

Embarcadero de Legazpi, where you can get a view of the bay and grab a meal.

The LKY Metro Transport and Lifestyle Hub, also known as the Legazpi Grand Central Terminal.

The LKY Metro Transport and Lifestyle Hub, also known as the Legazpi Grand Central Terminal.

I arrived in Bicol Central Station located in Naga City at around 8:00PM. The Bicol Central Station is a walking distance from SM City Naga. I took my dinner at Tapsi Terminal, just in front of SM City Naga. I then went to Sunny View Hotel but there was no available room. I tried inquiring at Sampaguita Tourist Inn, Hotel Mirabella and Golden Leaf Hotel but there were no available rooms as well. I was a bit surprise to learn about it as it is off-peak season and there are no special events in the city. I ended up with Sogo Hotel, a much more expensive than the other hotels.

Bicol Central Station, where one can find transportation getting in and out of the city.

Bicol Central Station, where one can find transportation getting in and out of the city.

SM City Naga is located near the Bicol Central Station.

SM City Naga is located near the Bicol Central Station.

Eateries or carinderias in front of SM City Naga. If you are tourist or visitor of the city, I suggest you take your meal here. You can find local dishes that will complete your stay in the city.

Eateries or carinderias in front of SM City Naga. If you are tourist or visitor of the city, I suggest you take your meal here. You can find local dishes that will complete your stay in the city.

Accommodations in Naga City do not not usually accept reservation. You need to walk-in to be able to get a room. If you are traveling to Naga City and you require an accommodation, I suggest you reserve a room at around 2:00PM.

The next morning, I went to White Pebble Beach without much idea on what to expect there. I took a tricycle and asked the driver to drop me at LCC. I am not aware that there is an LCC Supermarket and LCC Mall. The driver dropped me at LCC Supermarket but I told him that I need to get to Southbound Naga City Terminal also known as LCC Transport Terminal. We then headed to the terminal.

LCC Transport Terminal or in Google maps it is named as Southbound Naga City Terminal. This is where you can find a jeepney going to White Pebble Beach. This is accessible by a tricycle ride from the city proper or from SM City Naga.

LCC Transport Terminal or in Google maps it is named as Southbound Naga City Terminal. This is where you can find a jeepney going to White Pebble Beach. This is accessible by a tricycle ride from the city proper or from SM City Naga.

This signage made me feel confident that I am on the right terminal for White Pebble Beach. It took a while before a passenger jeepney occupied the slot. It turns out that the passenger jeepneys bound to Bagolatao are very limited as well as their daily trips.

This signage made me feel confident that I am on the right terminal for White Pebble Beach. It took a while before a passenger jeepney occupied the slot. It turns out that the passenger jeepneys bound to Bagolatao are very limited as well as their daily trips.

I took some photos in the area and I waited for about half an hour before a jeepney going to Bagolatao arrived. I asked the conductor to drop me at the White Pebble Beach. We waited for other passengers. Each passengers was carrying lots of things mostly items that are meant to be resold. There was even a passenger that caught us on our way to our destination in a gasoline station. She was carrying a lot of packages from sacks of rice, groceries and others. With these scenarios, I knew that transportation to that location is very limited but I never thought that going back is really a challenge.

Generally, the road going to Bagolatao is ok but there were rough roads along the way. I feast my eyes with the beauty of nature as we travel. We had a short stop where I bought myself a stick of bananacue being sold by children in the area.

Road going to White Pebble Beach in Bagolatao.

Road going to White Pebble Beach in Bagolatao.

As we approach the coast, I get excited to see the sea. It was cloudy and windy that day. The waves are very strong. You cannot even see the beauty of the water. We traveled few more meters and the conductor had informed me that we are now in White Pebble Beach. I was busy checking Google maps then and was surprised to learned that we are now in White Pebble Beach as Google maps shows it is still hundred meters away. I knew that I was on the right location when I saw the Bicol Shell Museum. I have read in one of online blogs that the Bicol Shell Museum is just across the White Pebble Beach.

Entrance of White Pebble Beach in Minalabac, Bagolatao, Camarines Sur, Philippines.

Entrance of White Pebble Beach in Minalabac, Bagolatao, Camarines Sur, Philippines.

Bicol Shell Museum is located across the White Beach Pebble Beach.

Bicol Shell Museum is located across the White Beach Pebble Beach.

I inquired inside and asked if that is the only white pebble beach in the area. The attendant said that she does not know. I paid for the entrance fee only and check the beach. I took some photos and selfies in the area. Prior to that, I asked the attendant how to get back to the city proper. She told me that the next trip will be at 4:00AM the next day. I was not able to get a clear information about the schedule of passenger jeepneys in the area. At one point she mentioned that there is a trip in the afternoon but took it back when I confirm it again. However, three things are for sure when it comes to going back to the city proper; you can take the early morning jeepney trip, you can hire a habal-habal (motorbike) or if you are at least a group of 10, you can make an arrangement at the Southbound Naga City Terminal.

The shore at the White Pebble Beach. A mini waterfalls can be seen at the far tip of the hill, which is just a walking distance from where I am sitting.

The shore at the White Pebble Beach. A mini waterfalls can be seen at the far tip of the hill, which is just a walking distance from where I am sitting.

Mini Waterfalls. I did not ask if this waterfalls has a name or even considered to be a waterfalls. From where I am standing, it looks like the water is coming from the top of the hill.

Mini Waterfalls. I did not ask if this waterfalls has a name or even considered to be a waterfalls. From where I am standing, it looks like the water is coming from the top of the hill.

I just got lucky that day because a group of 5 from Manila had made an arrangement with a jeepney and they will be back to the city proper early afternoon that day. I asked if I can join them and I will just pay for my share. They agreed. On our way back to the city proper, we passed a wedding celebration along the way. It was nice to see such event. In Philippine provinces, it is usual to see a lot of people attending a wedding celebration. Mostly, they belong to the same community or barangay. Even though there is no official invitation, it is like automatic. Thus, the hosts are expected to prepare more than enough for the celebration.

A group from Manila who went to Camarines Sur for Caramoan who ended up in White Pebble Beach because of unfavorable weather condition. (L-R) Jerome, Ariane, Kristine, Reza and Michael.

A group from Manila who went to Camarines Sur for Caramoan who ended up in White Pebble Beach because of unfavorable weather condition. (L-R) Jerome, Ariane, Kristine, Reza and Michael.

When we reached the city proper, I immediately went to Sunny View Hotel to reserve a room. I was told that a room will not be available until 3:00PM. I decided to wait as it is just about 30 minutes until 3:00PM. Few minutes of waiting in their lobby, I was advised that the room is ready for occupancy. I paid for the room and a deposit fee for the towel, which is refundable upon checkout.

I stayed in the room and took a nap before I went for a city tour. I walk towards their city plazas and took some pictures. There are plenty of restaurants and eateries in the vicinity. You can also find street foods. I was looking for something that is “local” but I could not find one. I ended up eating goto, a beef porridge.

Street vendors in Naga City Plaza.

Street vendors in Naga City Plaza.

Too many to choose from for your barbecues!

Too many to choose from for your barbecues!

Tokwa't baboy (left) and goto (right).

Tokwa’t baboy (left) and goto (right).

The next day, I woke up early to prepare for my flight. I went to the Bicol Central Station to catch a jeepney that will bring me at the drop-off point of Naga Airport in Pili, Camarines Sur. Just look for jeepneys bearing a sign “Bula” or “Pili”. Using Google maps, I monitored my current location. I do not think that one can miss the drop-off point because it is just across Central Bicol State University. If you are coming from Naga City, it is located on the right side of the road. You can always ask the driver to alight you at the drop-off point of Naga Airport. From there, you have the option to take a tricycle or just walk towards the airport, which is just about 450 meters away.

From the Bicol Central Station, look for jeepneys bearing Bula / Pili signage and ask to drop you off at the road leading to the Naga Airport.

From the Bicol Central Station, look for jeepneys bearing Bula / Pili signage and ask to drop you off at the road leading to the Naga Airport.

Here is a short video clip of Cagsawa Ruins.

For travel itinerary, please click here.

For travel expenses, please click here.

This is my Legazpi – Naga trip with travel dates from 17th of October, 2015 to 19th of October, 2015.

By | 2017-09-02T09:40:49+00:00 December 1st, 2015|Local Travels|0 Comments

About the Author:

Elpi Garcia is a travel enthusiast who go for an adventure whenever his budget and time allow it. He is more into sight seeing for a nature-packed experience and city / town tour to understand the history and culture of the places he visit. Aside from travel, he is also interested in alternative medicine, business opportunities, website design and information technology. He maintains websites related to alternative medicine, business opportunities like eLoad Matrix and Payday Loan; and website design services.

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