Tag Archives: Places to visit in Legazpi City

DJC Halo Halo: Another Yummy Halo Halo in Legazpi City

DJC is one of the popular halo-halo spots in Albay.

DJC HALO-HALO. It was raining 😦

It started as a small store in Tiwi, Albay then they branched out to Legazpi City. Before it conquered Legazpi, people usually flock Tiwi only to taste this yummy treat– It has this milky and unusual taste that you will definitely love!

The Yummy Treat — The photo is from DJC Facebook Page

The colorful presentation of this taste bud friendly treat is definitely screaming “I’m Yummy!”

If you love a little bit of sophistication, then you might want to eat your halo-halo in this place, since unlike its counterpart Lana’s Halo-Halo which is located in a grumpy side of the town (in Legazpi Wet Market), here, it is located in one of the prime location in Legazpi City–near the mall.

Photo from DJC Facebook Page

However, the sophistication and the classy feel has a price. This is much expensive than its Lana’s Counterpart. It costs P70-85 ($ 1.7 — 2 USD) depending on the size and type of halo-halo you will order (they have special and supreme 🙂 ).

Menu of DJC — Photo from DJC Facebook Page

I really don’t know how to explain the taste of this halo-halo, but one thing I can assure you is that it is definitely worth your time and money!

If you’ll gonna ask me what halo-halo is better (Lana’s or DJC) I might say that it is Lana’s but I must tell you that—taste differs in every person– I might like this but you might prefer the other– so, what I can say is TRY BOTH! 🙂

If you go to Legazpi City, don’t just watch Mayon; also try this yummy Halo-Halo!

How to get here:

1. If you are coming from Old Albay or Daraga, Ride the Tahao Road Jeep, then drop off in Pacific/ Gaisano Mall. In the right side portion of the mall is where this restaurant is located

2. Ride a tricycle or taxi then say “Head to DJC or sa DJC Halo-Halo po!”. It is in Gaisano/Pacific Mall compound so it is easy to know where it is.

DJC Restaurant Map: Forgive my drawing 🙂

To visit their fb page: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.134118986630034.13308.127671687274764&type=3


Your Itinerary for your Albay, Philippines Adventure

If you wanna go to Albay to see this Majestic Mayon Volcano, then here is my handmade itinerary for your adventure. Just follow this and I assure you, that doing so will definitely make you feel like a local and not just another tourist in Albay.

I added here the places where the usual tourists go but I also added some places and some restaurants that only locals know about 🙂

(To those who doesn’t know– I’m domiciled in Legazpi City, Albay although I’m currently residing in Manila, so I have experienced being a local in this part of the Philippines– I live, I breath, I love Legazpi.)

This is a sample itinerary for your Albay adventure. It depends to you if you follow it or not but I highly recommend it 🙂


So, in order for you not to be confused, with the places I’m going to mention, please take note that Legazpi City and Daraga is a city and a municipality of Albay. While Bicol is a region where Albay Province is located.

Daraga and Albay (a municipality and a city of Albay Province) adjoins each other that is why you can see a lot of jeepneys having a sign Daraga–Legazpi which means Daraga to Legazpi.  Gets?

So… Let’s start! 🙂


Click the links to see my posts/reviews about the place. Have fun reading! 🙂

3 DAYS 2 NIGHTS STAY (If you arrive 7:00 am or earlier)

1st day — Suggestion: Eat Heavy Breakfast

  • 8:00 — 9:00 am   (EAT BREAKFAST)

Places where you can eat your breakfast:

  1.  Airport Canteen– here you can eat a good TAPA (smoked beef), egg and coffee for P100.00 ($2.32USD)
  2. Airport Hotel Buffet — you can eat here (no need to be a hotel guest) the buffet here has a good variety. Remember it is a buffet or what other call as Eat-all-you can. Vegetarians would also love to eat here because they serve a lot of vegetables (the price is only — P145 or $3.37USD)
  • 8:00 — 11:00 am  visit Hoyop-Hoyopan Cave or Calabidongan Cave
  • 11:00 — 11:30 am  eat lunch by going to Camalig proper; there are a lot of stalls that sells “Pinangat” a local delicacy, it is made of a vegetable with coconut milk. Camalig is more known for their pinangats other than any place in Albay, so you can see sellers having their ice boxes in the streets where they keep this tasty pinangats hot 🙂 This is a must do since this is Bicol’s especialty, coming to Bicol without trying this is a No-No!
  •           It is either you eat in one of the restaurants (when I say restaurant– cheap style– it is the usual place with no airconditioning, if you are lucky there is an electric fan; a small downscale restaurant 🙂 ) Or you can opt to buy Pinangat and Rice in Camalig (the price of pinangat is only P 20-70 or ($0.46- 1.63 USD) then buy rice) after that you can bring it in your next stop– the Cagsawa Ruins!
  • 12:00-2:30 pmGo to Cagsawa Ruins, have a picnic there and eat your lunch. Actually, there are food and souvenir stalls in this park, so, it is up to you whether you  buy your lunch in Camalig or just eat in one of the downscale restaurants in Cagsawa Ruins. The Entrance Fee for Cagsawa Ruins is only P10.00 or $0.20USD per person
  • 2:30 pm– 3:30 pm Hike or ride the tricycle to visit one of the beautiful Church in Albay the Daraga Church. It is located in a hill where you should hike before you can see its grandeur. 
  • 3:30 pm–4:40 pmVisit another old Church in Albay, the Albay Church and take pictures of the park and Governor’s office (The Capitol Nearby). The Albay proper in Legazpi City is still in the Spanish colonial setting where the Church, the Capitol and the park stays in one area of the city. So, at least you can see such a setting even during this time.
  •       From here, ride a jeep going to Legazpi City, and then get off near LCC’s main entrance then walk towards a place where there are a lot of streetfoods being sold (I posted a sketch below, refer to it. The jeep ride is only P12.oo or $0.27USD per person
  • 4:40-5:20 —  Go to Legazpi Center (Centro Legazpi) and go to a hawker street in Legazpi City (Just like hawker streets in Wangfujing, Beijing China, Legazpi also has some street foods to offer.
  •        As a suggestion,  go there to eat congee. Go to AKONG’s LUGAW atbp. The congee there is great! It was already established even when I was still a child. Ask the locals where the Akong’s Lugaw is located (Pronounce it as Ah-Kong with strong A and O). The price of the congee is only P35.00 $0.81USD
  • 5:30 – 7:00 pm — Go to Embarcadero, from Akong’s Lugaw, you can ride a trycicle and tell the driver to go to Embarcadero, and tell the driver to drop you off not in the mall but in the baywalk (the fare should only be (P20-30 — $0.46-0.70). In Embarcadero, you can see the Mayon Volcano wrapped by the blue sky. The view is good during sundown:
Mayon Volcano (taken in Embarcadero sept. 2011)

You can stay in Embarcadero until you want since this ends the tour, you can eat in the nearby mall and then go back to the baywalk area and then have a drink in one of the open bars in the area. I suggest you go to Opisina Bar it is the cheapest among them all!

2ND DAY — Places to Visit: Lignon Hill, Bacacay, Albay Black Sand Beaches, Mayon Resthouse.

4:30 am — wake up! yeah, I know.. too early right? What I want you to do is to hike the Lignon Hill which gives an amazing view of Mayon during sunrise. If Embarcadero has a nice view during the evening, Lignon Hill is the best during sun rise.

7:00 am — Go down Lignon Hill head back to your hotel to eat your breakfast and rest

11:00 -1:00 pm — Head to Albay and go to Small Talk Cafe for Lunch — try their pinangat pasta or cordon bleu! Highly recommended! (Price for 2 persons sharing = P500-800 = $12 to 18USD)

1:00 pm – 3:00 pm — Mayon Resthouse in Tabaco, Albay, a one hour drive from Legazpi City. I’ll post the directions going here soon! 🙂

3:00 pm – 6:00 pm — Enjoy the black sand beaches in Bacacay, Albay

6:00 — travel back to Legazpi City and go to Four Seasons Restaurant in Legazpi City Center. Order there Seasons Chicken — the food here is really yummy– trust me! and order their Avocado shake 🙂 (Price for 2 persons sharing= P500.00 or $12USD)

3RD DAY (depends on your departure time)

8:00 – 9:00 am — head to Satellite Terminal to buy souvenirs (Here, you can buy some great and yummy pilinut candies as well as sturdy abaca products) and then head to either DJC halo-halo located near Gaisano Mall or the more cheapscale but I think yummier one, (Lanas’ Halo-Halo) which is located in the Legazpi City Market just ask the locals where this place is and they will be glad to help. Halo-Halo in Legazpi is different than other places then go back to your hotel to pack and get ready to leave 😦

I found a map of Legazpi City in Mappery.com. Here it is:

Legazpi City Map I got from Mappery.com

Okay, forgive my drawing and handwriting. This sketch will show you how to go to Akong’s Lugaw and Four Seasons: Forgive my horrible handwriting 😦

How to go to Akong’s Lugaw atbp?

Another One to see where Four Seasons is located:

forgive my horrible drawing 🙂



Things to do in Albay, Philippines

There are a lot of activities open for tourists and locals alike in Albay.

Honestly,  I haven’t tried some of the things listed here  but I promise to try it when I go back to my hometown this May. 🙂

Those in asterisks are the things that I haven’t tried. But I will update it as soon as I set my foot in my lovely hometown


  1. Sightseeing — savor the captivating beauty of Mayon Volcano
  2. Swimming — swim in the black sand beaches in Bacacay, Albay, the black colored sand came from the beautiful Mayon herself or you can go to the nearby Cagraray Island which has a stretch of white sand beach and where the infamous luxury resort Misibis Bay is located.
  3. ATV-riding — ride the ATV and go around the foot of Mayon *
  4. Hiking — hike the treacherously steep slope of Mt. Mayon * or the Lignon Hill
  5. Spelunking — explore the long and winding caves of  Camalig, Albay
  6. Church-hopping — there’s a lot of centuries old church in Albay that you might want to explore and visit especially if you are an architecture buff 🙂
  7. Bar-hopping — The bar scene in Albay, especially in Legazpi City, doesn’t lack character. Moreover, there are a lot of bars that offers cheap prices that will definitely make you wanting for more!
  8. Zip-lining — you can zipline in Lignon Hill while you enjoy the beautiful view of Mayon Volcano as a backdrop *.
  9. Rappelling — you can do this in Embarcadero, a newly opened mall and lighthouse in the foot of a mountain which was called as sleeping lion 🙂 *
  10. Eat Bicol Express or Pinangat — this is Bicol’s specialty so don’t miss this when you go to Albay! (I’ll make a post about this, so tune in! 🙂 )


  1. Eat Pinangat or Bicol Express
  2. Buy Pili nuts for souvenirs (Albay is well-known for growing yummy pilinuts!), you can buy these in Satellite terminal
  3. Go to Cagsawa Ruins
  4. Try the pinangat-carbonara in Small Talk Cafe (I’ll make another post for this, so tune in! I’m just waiting for my brother to upload the photos.

In the video below, you will see a sneak peek of what Albay can offer you. This is a teaser from the Philippines well-known TV show: Sports Unlimited. (No Copyright Infringement Intended; Invoking Fair Use policy)

LOOK IN TO MY NEXT POST: I CREATED a sample itinerary for your travel which is SURELY BUDGET-FRIENDLY !


Bacacay, Albay: A lair of black sand beaches

Black sand beaches are rare in the world. Only few places in earth has this kind of sand– and one of this is in Albay, Philippines.

Black Sand Beach in Bacacay, Albay —Oops.. the R in wanderer is missing! 🙂

There are a lot of white sand beaches in the Philippines, but rarely you can see a black colored one. Here in Bacacay, Albay you can see long stretches of black sand. These stretches are caused by natural erosion of volcanic rock and sand–so in short, it came from Mayon Volcano.

The sand coming from Mayon was said to be the best for constructing buildings and such, however, it is not as powdery fine like any other white sand beaches. But it is still sand– and beach so it is enough for me.

Bacacay is another municipality of Albay, It is 45 minutes to 1 hour ride going to this majestic black sand beaches. You can either ride a van or jeep going to Tabacco or Bacacay. You can go to Satellite Terminal Station where you can find a van/ jeep that traverses Legazpi City to Tabacco or Bacacay. Ask the driver to let you off at Brgy San Jose junction. Then ride a tricycle to take you to the resort you wanna go but you can just ask the locals where the best resort is located. Tricycle Fare is P7.00/ person ($0.16) and P 50.00 or ($1.16 USD) for special trip; which means you don’t need to wait for other passengers to ride the tricycle, it is like riding a taxi. Or wait for the Jeep going to Sogod for P 7.50/person (0.20 USD). One of the best beaches is located in Sogod.

Don’t worry about prior reservations or such, there are a lot of resorts in Bacacay which you can have your overnight stay. But I suggest that you just make a day trip here since there’s nothing going on at night–unless, of course you really wanna swim and enjoy the black sand beach.

I’m sorry but I wasn’t able to get a good picture since it was raining when we went there.

We went there last December 🙂 The only trash that you can see is only seaweeds 🙂

This place might not be appealing for some… but just take note: the same color of sand is what you see in Hawaii and Maui 🙂 Just imagine you are out and about in these overseas places….

seeing a black sand beach in the Philippines is something worth of your time and effort.


Hoyop-Hoyopan Cave in Albay, Philippines: A Place to feel nature

Caves are fascinating because of how they are formed and how it will vanish after few centuries.

In Albay, there are two caves that are well-known, one is the Hoyop-hoyopan cave and the Calabidongan Cave. If you want a harder course for your spelunking adventure, I suggest you go to Calabidongan as Hoyop-hoyopan is just walking inside a cave–it doesn’t have the swimming, climbing, and sliding which is expected for a spelunking adventure.

The main entrance of the Cave

The cave that we went to is called as Hoyop-Hoyopan Cave. The cave has 3 main entrances and 3 floors, and what is fascinating is that it has its own ventilation. The wind passes through the openings of this cave which makes it cool inside and also, that is where its name came from. Hoyop, which means (ihip) blow.

Sign near the entrance of Hoyop-Hoyopan Cave

The cave also doesn’t stink unlike other caves that I have visited

What is also interesting is the formation of stalagmites and stalactites–although you need a great imagination to enjoy the tour

Can you see a giraffe???

Hoyop-Hoyopan cave is located in Camalig, Albay, about 30 minutes away from Legazpi City. As far as I know, there is no direct transportation which will take you in this cave. What you can do is hire a tricycle or a van in Daraga (instead of Legazpi, so that the price will be cheaper) to transport you in this destination.

The Exit 🙂 When i see this, I remember Pan’s Labyrinth 🙂
My Brother and the Exit 🙂 Mind you, he got out nicely!

When you arrive in the site, there are people who can assist you and tour you around the cave, but the service is not for free it is for a minimum fee of P300.00 or $7 USD. The price is per group, so it doesn’t matter how many people you are. And also, it include the entrance fee but excludes the parking fee. The parking fee is P25.00 or $0.55 USD.

I suggest that you hire a guide since they know where the beautiful stalagmites and stalactite formations are located, and also, they will warn you when to lower your head or not. Please be pretty careful while walking in the cave since you might bump your head in the stalagmites/stalactites.

DEAD MAN ROCK FORMATION (You can see a lot of interesting rock formation inside this cave)

The cave is not “au naturale” there are man-made structures inside the cave for visitors’ safety. There are stairs and bridges; and also there are lights hanging in some of the areas of this place. that is why you don’t need to bring some flashlights. The stairs are made because there’s a lot of visitors slipping when they go up to the higher level.

Bridge in Hoyop-Hoyopan Cave

There is also a man-made dance floor where people of Camalig go and party during the Martial Law era. This is funny but this is real. They go there during the night and enjoy themselves although there was a curfew set by the Marcos’ government.

Even though there’s man made structures inside the cave, it doesn’t really affect how natural and beautiful the cave is. The man made structures are just to protect the tourists from any untoward accident.

Here, you can also see a nice view of the Mayon Volcano. However, when we got there, it was raining so Mayon is hiding from us.

Just look at the greeneries while going towards the other cave opening.

You can also buy some crystals as souvenirs here. They cost at an average of P10.00 to P1000.00 ($ 0.23 – $23.25 USD).






Mayon Volcano, Philippines: Truly Wonderful

I was born and raised in Legazpi City where a perfectly amazing landmark is located– The Mayon Volcano.

Being used in seeing this Volcano since I was young, I wasn’t really that amazed on how unique and beautiful it is. I always say to myself– “It’s no big deal, It’s just a freaking Volcano”

I went to Manila to pursue my studies thus, I’ve never seen this wonderful volcano for a long time.. Since I am far from it, I’m kind of missing seeing this volcano..And the real deal is that every time I go back to Legazpi for a vacation, and upon deplaning… There’s always a realization which always runs in my head……

I realized how beautifully crafted it is…

How different it is from other volcanoes out there…

and how  it made my heart flutter when I see it…

And every time I see this natural wonder I really feel that I’m finally home…

I realized that It’s something important in my life. In other sense, it witnessed my life.. from being toddler to a full-grown lady… and being away from it makes me feel incomplete….

Mayon Volcano (taken in Embarcadero sept. 2011)

This Volcano is always in your periphery when you are in Legazpi, it sits perfectly in your line of sight… Just sit down somewhere (where no buildings will kept the view out) and you can savor the beauty of this beautiful Mayon Volcano. One of the places where you can really savor the beauty of Mayon is in Cagsawa Ruins, Embarcadero (during sunset) and in Mayon International Hotel (Now, named as The Oriental Hotel), Lignon Hill and the Legazpi City Airport.

Mayon Volcano before I ride the plane going back to Manila (Taken in Legazpi Airport)

The name of this volcano is “Mayon” a shortcut for “Magayon” which means Beautiful in Bicol’s dialect. The name suits it very well because it has an almost perfect cone…and its beautifully laden landscape in rice paddies.. and also, you will be amazed on how it kept its natural beauty for centuries.

And… That’s not it; Mayon Volcano is part of the 7 Natural Wonders in the Philippines, so It’s really a MUST-SEE!

However, Mayon is quite shy and always cover herself with Clouds, so some unlucky visitors in Albay can only see her wonderfully shaped figure only once or sometimes not even once…There’s a legend that explains why Mayon is always covered with Clouds

Mayon covered in clouds in Cagsawa Park


The Legend of Mayon Volcano is that once upon a time, there lived a beautiful young maiden named as Daragang Magayon (Beautiful Lady), she is the daughter of a tribe leader of Rawis (a place in Albay, which is still called as it is until now). Since Magayon is really beautiful, a lot of young men from different tribes likes her and one of her very daring suitor is Pagtuga (in english, Eruption), he is really in love with Magayon… But Magayon doesn’t like him because of his boastful attitude and unkind heart.

Magayon was playing in the Yawa River (A river in Rawis, Legazpi City which is still existing until today) when she suddenly slipped and unfortunately she doesn’t know how to swim. Luckily a young man named Ulap (Cloud) was walking near the river and he saw the damsel in distress and helped her. Magayon was shocked on how and why Ulap saved her, knowing that Ulap is from a rival tribe. But Ulap was also shocked on how beautiful Magayon was and fell in love with her in an instant. Magayon also fell in love with Ulap upon knowing how kind and loving he can be.

When Pagtuga learned about the relationship of Magayon and Ulap, he kidnapped Magayon’s father and told her that if she doesn’t marry him, he will kill her father; Magayon told this dilemma to Ulap, then Ulap being the prince of another tribe went towards Pagtuga’s lair and killed him… Magayon saw how victorious her love is and went towards Ulap when she was suddenly hit by an arrow from Pagtuga’s warriors; Ulap went towards her not knowing what to do and suddenly he was also pierced by a spear which caused his untimely death…

Magayon’s father decided to bury the two together, and in shock, the people realized that the grave became higher and higher until it formed what it is today…

It was said by my teachers when I was in grade school that once Mayon is covered with clouds… Ulap and Magayon are kissing each other and their love is being reconciled… while when it errupts… they say that Pagtuga can’t still rest in peace and still harasses Magayon… While others says that it is Magayon’s own wrath about how she was killed and her beloved… and how their love untimely ended.

Beautiful Mayon Volcano 🙂