Fountains of the Keeper - Daranak and Batlag Falls

For the first time, I spontaneously decided to go on a solo expedition. The thought of travelling alone, not depending on anyone for anything, excited me. No, I'm not depressed or heartbroken and I didn't intend to go emo or pretend to be soul searching. I just craved for a little adventure by my lonesome. For my first target, I thought of going somewhere relatively near and after seeing several instagram posts of the place, I knew this would be the perfect destination.

Since I've grown fond of falls and short nature treks, I decided to pay Daranak and Batlag Falls in Tanay a visit. Because I'm already from Ortigas Extension, getting there was easy. I just had to ride a jeepney going to Tanay and I'm set. Otherwise, I still had to find the terminal in Shaw Boulevard and add 30-45 minutes to the total travel time.Upon reaching Tanay Public Market, I took a 10-15 minute tricycle ride to the falls that cost around Php 100. But since I asked him to wait for me, he just billed me Php 250 for the whole tricycle rental. Price is good for 4 persons but since I was travelling alone, I had to shoulder everything. 

After paying the entrance fee of Php 50, I observed that there were several groups of "bakasyonistas" ahead of me even if it was a weekday. Place was swarmed with families and groups of friends having picnics at the available cottages and tables. The view of Daranak Falls was just breathtaking. I just stared at it, TLC sang in my head, and not mind the ruckus from the day-trippers swimming in the deep basin and the shallow streams nearby. When the lifeguards noticed that I was a solo traveler, they were kind enough to look after my things while I was taking a dip. 

After a short walk from Daranak Falls, a woman approached me, I presumed she was the caretaker, and asked me an additional Php 100 to enter the area of Batlag Falls. Going there, I passed by a clear stream with a relaxing resonance and when I reached the falls, I was immediately enthralled by the sight. TLC's song was remixed in my head and I'm still getting chills as I'm writing this.  The water was glassy and cold. But the best part about the area is the seclusion. Only a handful of people was in the area with me. There was no time to lose. I immediately brought out my camera and selfie-stick to document the enchanting view with less chances of getting photobombed.   

After a few hours of swimming and adoring the rejuvenating beauty of nature before me, I went home with a smile on my face and a sense of accomplishment that I was able to do this alone. Generally, people from Tanay are nice and accommodating. This was a liberating experience. 

Some scenes from Encantadia, a fantasy TV series that I grew fond of, was set here. Alena, keeper of the Water Gem, stayed in this place for meditation, reflection and to regroup with her loved ones. This was her sanctuary. Now, it's mine too. Avisala.  


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