By Priam Nepomuceno
MANILA — Pissed off with the daily commuting grind in Metro Manila’s hot, steaming and concrete jungle? There is no need to look farther as “Hinulugang Taktak” Falls, one of Antipolo City’s most famous landmarks, is a perfect venue for a weekend getaway.
Located 21 kilometers from Manila and 1.7 kilometers from the Antipolo Cathedral, Hinulugang Taktak is the city’s top tourist destination, especially during the fiesta season of May. The area was popularized and immortalized by the song “Tayo na Sa Antipolo”, especially with the line “at doon maligo tayo, sa batis na kung tawagin ay Hi-hi-Hinulugang Taktak“.
The falls is located in Barangay Dela Paz in Antipolo City, on Taktak Road off Sumulong Highway. “Hinulugang Taktak” was declared a National Park in 1990 and a Protected Landscape in 2000.
For an entrance fee of PHP30, local tourists can see firsthand the beauty of the falls and stroll in the park’s meditation area. For families, children can dip into the park’s kiddie pool.
Van de la Cruz, 54, has always been fascinated by Hinulugang Taktak and said that it has improved considerably since he was a child.
“Maganda ‘yung view tapos parang naalala ko nung bata pa ako, ilang years na akong hindi nakapasyal dito ngayon pa lang, kaya’t nakita ko medyo maganda ngayon. Maganda siya kaya hihikayatin ko ang pamilya ko na pumunta rito (It has a beautiful view. The last time I visited the place was when I was still young. It’s only now that I visited the area again. It’s more beautiful now. I will encourage my family to visit this place),” he said.
Dory Enriquez, 58, likened the falls to Rizal Park in Manila and said she is in love with its peaceful aura.
“Pabalik-balik naman kami dito sa Hinulugang Taktak, kasi parang ito yung Rizal Park ng Antipolo. Kaya kilala na ‘to, saka inaayos naman saka nililinis (We are frequent visitors here at Hinulugang Taktak. It’s like the Rizal Park of Antipolo that is why it became famous. They continue to maintain its beauty and cleanliness),” she added.
Elena Garcia, 68, praised the beauty of the falls because of the continuous efforts to clean it up.
“Maganda, maraming nagbago. Kasi galing pa kami Obando, Bulacan, mga katekista tapos ito yung lugar na napili namin kasi tahimik saka malinis na rin naman (It’s beautiful. There were many changes. We are catechists from Obando, Bulacan and we chose to come here because the place is serene and clean),” she said.
Elena Reyes, 71, said she always tags along her friends whenever she visits the place.
“Maganda siya pero kailangan patuloy na linisin. Nakakapanghinayang kapag ‘di pagtuunan ng pansin (It’s beautiful but it really needs more cleanups. It’s a waste if it will be neglected),” said 20-year-old Crysalie Montalbo, who visited the falls in 2017. (With reports from Darwin C. Pesco, OJT, PNA)