Sunday, April 12, 2015

Merloquet Falls, Zamboanga City

town of Vitaly

After visiting Basilan, Tawi-Tawi, Sta. Cruz Island and having my Zamboanga City Tour, I was left in a dilemma, what will I do on my last day in Zamboanga City?
I was suppose to go to Sulu. But the schedule of the boat does not coincide with own schedule and so I tried another option for my last day. And it was a brilliant move on my part.

Bataan bridge

And the decision was to go to Merloquete Falls in Vitaly, Zamboanga City!

How to get there

From Zamboanga City
From the city proper, ride a tricycle to the Guiwan bus station. Fare is 20-30 pesos depending on where you are billeted. Ride either the bus (Rural Bus Transit) or van ride to Ipil, Pagadian or Dipolog. Both the fare in the bus or van is P100. It is 76 kilometers away from the city or 1 hour and 30 minutes bus or van ride (van is faster). Alight in Bataan Bridge just before the town proper of Vitaly, Then ride the habal-habal ride to Merloquete Falls located at Brgy. Sibulao. Fare is P60 for one pax and travel time is 25 minutes or 10 kilometers, more or less. From the jump-off point, the trek is good for 20-25 minutes.

From Ipil
It is 65 kilometers from Ipil and the fare in the bus is P85.

From Pagadian
It is 196 kilometers away from Pagadian and the fare is P255. 

Pagadian to Zamboanga City and vice-versa
It is 272 kilometers and the fare is P355.

road going to the falls
And this is the story behind the blog. I just arrived in Zamboanga International Airport coming from Tawi-Tawi. Took a habal-habal ride back to my hotel and checked-in. Boarded the same habal-habal to Rural Bus Transit bus station in Guiwan. Took me 1 hour and 30 minutes to reach Vitaly. Alilghted and boarded another habal-habal to the falls!

Only a habal-habal services the route because of bad road conditions once you are near the area.

better read the signages
My driver/guide that day was named Noni (0926-326-1489).

parking area

After 20 minutes of laboring under the heat of the sun, we reached the jump-off point. Parking fees is P10 for motorcycle and P20 for other vehicles.

Registration area

We walked a couple of steps and we reached the registration area and paid P5.00 as entrance fee.

Then, we started descending in the 373 steps towards the falls.

After ten minutes of walking, we reached the bottom.

There are cottages available for renting purposes and for which I was not able to inquire.

Falls No. 1 (the biggest)

There are a total of 3 falls in the area and falls no. 1 is the biggest.

As far as I know, there is only one falls in Zamboanga City.

my guide 

Then, we decided to ascend towards falls no. 2.

It took us less than 5 minutes and we reached the top of Falls No. 1.

It was April 2015 and the weather in the area was really hot. In fact, there were reported bush fires already happening. And that explains why there was minimal water flowing in the falls that month.

Falls No. 2

Less than 5 minutes of walking and we reached falls no. 2.

According to the locals, falls no.3 is the smallest and I decided not to ascend further and we went back to to the parking area. I paid Noni P160 for the round trip ride and gave him P100 as tip for his service as a tour guide. I enjoyed going back the view descending from the mountain. I hurried back to Zamboanga City and took the Rural Bus Transit. 

Place to Stay in Zamboanga City

City Inn Hotel (Gov. Alvarez cornerr La Purisima St. Zamboanga City)
Tel No. (062)-955-4058 / Cell No. 0936-608-8777
lowest rate - P895 (1 pax) / P995 (2 pax)

Medio Hotel (Buenavista Street corner San Jose road near Shell and Petron Station)
Tel No. (062)-955-1580
Lowest rate - P550 / P650

MAG-V Royal Hotel (cor. San Jose and Don Basilio, Navarro road, Zamboanga City)
Tel No. (062)-991-3054
lowest rates - P650 / P800 
Traveller's Inn
Good for short stay only, in between Medio Hotel and City Inn Hotel

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