Thursday, August 25, 2011

KIDZ POOL Mountain Resort, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

Kidz Pool Mountain Resort along Coto Mines in Masinloc, Zambales



I've heard about coto mines from a friend's friend on one booz session I had. The source is a Palauig local and when I've told him about Magalawa island, he claimed Coto Mines is a much better adventure.


The resort is actually KIDZ POOL MOUNTAIN RESORT though most of the articles on the net refer to it as COTO MINES (and people in the national highway would know COTO Mines and not kidz pool.)

The morning after, apart from I was still quite dizzy and weak as I drank so much the night before, I couldn't do any better than just sit and do whatever I could while sitting...browsing randomly as the best.

I took the time to look for whatever information I can find about that place called Coto Mines. When I googled, I could get enough pictures but not really enough information. Nevertheless, the pictures would tell so much about how great it is an experience that, again, I had to include it in my must list for destination.

There hasn't been much leisure happening lately as I have commenced work, and it was getting me real bored; So, i took the decision to go to Coto Mines. I had been sending messages to friends back and forth to get a company to come with me, however, nobody else confirmed but my good friend Ivy. We also managed to pull in our mountaineering buddies khai and james.


get this or you don't get in
Several radio calls from the guard and several enumeration of a list of names, after about 30 mins, we finally got the permit. It took a while to get that permit as we had 2 non-filipino nationals who are in the other group. As soon as they handed the permit, we were told there will be 4 checkpoints ahead, with the 4th being where we pay the P60 entrance fee and where we'd get briefing prior to being allowed to get into the resort. We were also warned about the terrain and that there had been some groups who didn't get to the resort because they lost patience with the 27kilometers rough road to the resort. In fact, we were also told that our car, Hyundai Getz, might not handle it, and I just told them that the 4 of us in the Getz will transfer to the Everest in that event (though I knew we'll get it through by hook or by crook).

19 bridges away and 4 strict checkpoints passed, we finally got the resort. My research said it'll take us an hour to finish the 27km rough road, but because of the car, we actually took 2.5hours. At most of the trail, we ran at 10-20kms/hr speed, but for a fifth of the distance, we could only run at 5-10kms/hr speed.

en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

a bead shop en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc Zambales

en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc Zambales

there's about 14 of these wooden bridges en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

there's about 14 of these wooden bridges en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

The view along the way was amazing. It starts with a thick forest; then through mountains and then river stream; Your eyes could only feast on the greenery.

right as soon as you get to the gate of the resort, your sight could tell you how cool the water is...the hanging bridges and the rocks...a totally different experience. We parked the car next to the villas and had to walk through the hanging bridge to get to the Kidz Pool where swimming happens. We boiled the rice and left it to cook itself while everyone ran after another to the diving board to jump out to the water: 500% excitement. The pictures will speak for me for how great an experience it is.


Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales
According to the other guests who are locals in the mining site, the water source is actually a huge lagoon from the mountains. The mining company has built a pipe from the lagoon to distribute water to the households and operations, and had put an articial falls by drilling through this pipe.

I also traced the waters of Coto through google maps, and I see that the waters come all the way from several mountains in Tarlac that crosses all together in the boundaries of Tarlac and Zambales.





herebelow are the kilometer readings I took note on trip:

To get to the resort, from Iba Public Market in Zambales, it will be 29.9kms away on the national highway taking the candelaria route (From barangay panolingan in palauig, it shall be 11.8 kilometers through the national highway). Take right on the arch for Baragay Narra, drive straight until 1.9kms after, the road curves towards right exactly where the first checkpoint is. (The wharf where the permits is issued is going to be on the opposite side of the national highway; Just right opposite the entry to Brgy Narra).

Just after 400meters after the first checkpoint, the paved road ends and starts the slow journey. The first bridge will be right after 200m and yes...all the bridges are safe for passage (just not outrightly obvious).

7.3kms after, you'll have a great panoramia of both the river and the mountains. Another 1.5 kilometers after, you'll have a viewdeck for a better preview of the river. 7.2kilometers further, you'll see a 'BOTIKA'. 1.7 kilometers more is a standalone (quite hilarious) crafts store.


2.6kms after will be the second checkpoint. Just 500m after, you'll get to the Mandaloy Elementary school and right infront is a store with enough convenience (you can get even cuticle remover and some vegetables there; Prices are OK; I bought a pack of 20s Marlboro lights for P36 and we also got ripe mangoes for just P15/kilo considering it's not even the season). 3.5kms more, you'll get to view an actual mining site and 200m further is the final checkpoint where you'd pay the P60 entrance fee. Just 800meters from there will be the resort.

From a few kilometers towards the resort, there will be diversions but always take the wider road.

Kindly contact Aling Coring (caretaker for Kidz Pool Mountain Resort) for inquiries: 09213540633..




Update June 12, 2015:

Last 2013, I went back to Kid'z Pool for one reason: To jump off the bridge. Back in our first visit in 2011, there were dive boards in place but I was so scared to jump. I went back to do it, and not only on the diving boards (which are not there anymore) but on the bridge. It is said to be 30 feet up and 30 feet down. I did it twice, and immediately after jumping, we left :-). 

As of that visit, there are no more permits required to get in. You can get a jeep from town proper that gets to the place. It is so nice to topload the jeep as there are a lot of mangoes along the way that I filled up a whole plastic bag with mangoes, atis, and avocado :-).


Kidz Pool Mountain Resort along Coto Mines in Masinloc, Zambales



I've heard about coto mines from a friend's friend on one booz session I had. The source is a Palauig local and when I've told him about Magalawa island, he claimed Coto Mines is a much better adventure.


The resort is actually KIDZ POOL MOUNTAIN RESORT though most of the articles on the net refer to it as COTO MINES (and people in the national highway would know COTO Mines and not kidz pool.)

The morning after, apart from I was still quite dizzy and weak as I drank so much the night before, I couldn't do any better than just sit and do whatever I could while sitting...browsing randomly as the best.

I took the time to look for whatever information I can find about that place called Coto Mines. When I googled, I could get enough pictures but not really enough information. Nevertheless, the pictures would tell so much about how great it is an experience that, again, I had to include it in my must list for destination.

There hasn't been much leisure happening lately as I have commenced work, and it was getting me real bored; So, i took the decision to go to Coto Mines. I had been sending messages to friends back and forth to get a company to come with me, however, nobody else confirmed but my good friend Ivy. We also managed to pull in our mountaineering buddies khai and james.


get this or you don't get in
Several radio calls from the guard and several enumeration of a list of names, after about 30 mins, we finally got the permit. It took a while to get that permit as we had 2 non-filipino nationals who are in the other group. As soon as they handed the permit, we were told there will be 4 checkpoints ahead, with the 4th being where we pay the P60 entrance fee and where we'd get briefing prior to being allowed to get into the resort. We were also warned about the terrain and that there had been some groups who didn't get to the resort because they lost patience with the 27kilometers rough road to the resort. In fact, we were also told that our car, Hyundai Getz, might not handle it, and I just told them that the 4 of us in the Getz will transfer to the Everest in that event (though I knew we'll get it through by hook or by crook).

19 bridges away and 4 strict checkpoints passed, we finally got the resort. My research said it'll take us an hour to finish the 27km rough road, but because of the car, we actually took 2.5hours. At most of the trail, we ran at 10-20kms/hr speed, but for a fifth of the distance, we could only run at 5-10kms/hr speed.

en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

a bead shop en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc Zambales

en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc Zambales

there's about 14 of these wooden bridges en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

there's about 14 of these wooden bridges en route to Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

The view along the way was amazing. It starts with a thick forest; then through mountains and then river stream; Your eyes could only feast on the greenery.

right as soon as you get to the gate of the resort, your sight could tell you how cool the water is...the hanging bridges and the rocks...a totally different experience. We parked the car next to the villas and had to walk through the hanging bridge to get to the Kidz Pool where swimming happens. We boiled the rice and left it to cook itself while everyone ran after another to the diving board to jump out to the water: 500% excitement. The pictures will speak for me for how great an experience it is.


Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales

Kid'z Pool, Coto Mines, Masinloc, Zambales
According to the other guests who are locals in the mining site, the water source is actually a huge lagoon from the mountains. The mining company has built a pipe from the lagoon to distribute water to the households and operations, and had put an articial falls by drilling through this pipe.

I also traced the waters of Coto through google maps, and I see that the waters come all the way from several mountains in Tarlac that crosses all together in the boundaries of Tarlac and Zambales.





herebelow are the kilometer readings I took note on trip:

To get to the resort, from Iba Public Market in Zambales, it will be 29.9kms away on the national highway taking the candelaria route (From barangay panolingan in palauig, it shall be 11.8 kilometers through the national highway). Take right on the arch for Baragay Narra, drive straight until 1.9kms after, the road curves towards right exactly where the first checkpoint is. (The wharf where the permits is issued is going to be on the opposite side of the national highway; Just right opposite the entry to Brgy Narra).

Just after 400meters after the first checkpoint, the paved road ends and starts the slow journey. The first bridge will be right after 200m and yes...all the bridges are safe for passage (just not outrightly obvious).

7.3kms after, you'll have a great panoramia of both the river and the mountains. Another 1.5 kilometers after, you'll have a viewdeck for a better preview of the river. 7.2kilometers further, you'll see a 'BOTIKA'. 1.7 kilometers more is a standalone (quite hilarious) crafts store.


2.6kms after will be the second checkpoint. Just 500m after, you'll get to the Mandaloy Elementary school and right infront is a store with enough convenience (you can get even cuticle remover and some vegetables there; Prices are OK; I bought a pack of 20s Marlboro lights for P36 and we also got ripe mangoes for just P15/kilo considering it's not even the season). 3.5kms more, you'll get to view an actual mining site and 200m further is the final checkpoint where you'd pay the P60 entrance fee. Just 800meters from there will be the resort.

From a few kilometers towards the resort, there will be diversions but always take the wider road.

Kindly contact Aling Coring (caretaker for Kidz Pool Mountain Resort) for inquiries: 09213540633..




Update June 12, 2015:

Last 2013, I went back to Kid'z Pool for one reason: To jump off the bridge. Back in our first visit in 2011, there were dive boards in place but I was so scared to jump. I went back to do it, and not only on the diving boards (which are not there anymore) but on the bridge. It is said to be 30 feet up and 30 feet down. I did it twice, and immediately after jumping, we left :-). 

As of that visit, there are no more permits required to get in. You can get a jeep from town proper that gets to the place. It is so nice to topload the jeep as there are a lot of mangoes along the way that I filled up a whole plastic bag with mangoes, atis, and avocado :-).


Read More »

Magalawa Island: the unfinished business

Whenever I have internet on my phone, and have nothing in mind to do over the internet, my final resort would be zooming on my google maps to find some great islands to check out. With pangasinan and zambales being my convenient destination, I have come across magalawa island. Thru google search, I got some information about the island, until I finally got to their facebook account; took their details and then organized a side trip along with my friends on a comeback tour i had to Potipot Island in Candelaria.

creepiness ahead

arrival in the island
Getting to the island for the first time was horrible. We got lost here and there, going back and forth the national highway. We had to ask the locals around who apparently are not so familiar either, who pointed us towards brgy San Juan. 

here's a video of how horrible the san juan route is during our first visit:



Being the locals we trusted them enough and took that route. We have come across several aged bridges; Even those where we had to stop and waited for a passer-by to confirm that it is passable by motor vehicles. The terrain goes worst as we forward, until we had to get the directions from the resort owners who confirmed we’ve taken the wrong route.

preparing dinner

got them in IBA public market; squid was at P60 per kilo (w/c in pampanga was at P140) and the fish (whatever it's called) was P42 for the piece (P70/kilo)


nom nom nom
There was no choice but to take a U-turn; 3 hours lost. It was quite late, almost 9pm, when we got to the jump-off point (Oslet’s house). The day after, my friend who took the camera left it on the shore and when he rose from the water, the camera’s wet and non-functional. The water has risen abruptly.

socials with the other guests of the island
It was quite disappointing that we did not recover even a single picture; All we had were those poor resolution shots and videos from our phones.

good morning magalawa
Last Saturday, Aug 20, we scheduled a trip to Coto mines in Masinloc Zambales. Unfortunately, we got to zambales so late, around 5pm, and when I called our contact person for coto mines, he said we might not be allowed to get in at that time. We didn’t have a choice but to find somewhere else to stay for the meantime, and spending the night in Magalawa Island will be a very good alternative. First, it will be nearby and would allow us to quickly jump to Coto mines in the morning, and second, So I can get pictures (by making it a point that I don’t leave the camera on the shoreline).



The resort is a bit improved this time. They had life vests on the boat; There was electricity to light the island on nightime; And there are airconditioned rooms for the more refined guests. They’ve also put up some better comfort rooms, as opposed to what was only available then during our first visit. They are also serving food nowadays for the no-cook travellers. And yes, the entrance charges were hiked too; What used to be P50 for a day trip is now P100, and the P100 overnight fee is now P300.

signature jump

another way to do it

alternative to the jumpshot :-)

Just like our first visit, by the time we reached the island, it was quite late. Too good I had the food ready from home and all we had to do was boil rice and fire up the charcoal for the barbeque. Apart from us, there were 2 more groups who pitched tent on the island. One of the groups joined us on the socials after dinner, who, after telling them about our plans the next day and what I have heard about coto, said they’ll go with us to coto.
walang magawa

We slept at half past three, after some good sharing-whatever-you-could-talk-about, and by 6am, I woke up to prepare the breakfast. The bad thing is, I think I forgot to keep the rellenong bangus inside the tent, so when we woke up, I couldn’t find a trace. I think the dogs took them (shiiit!!! I couldn’t get over it even the next day!). What’s left is the Maling and Tofu we bought in Iba Public Market.

Right after breakfast, we swam, and this time, it seems they’ve trimmed the meter high seaweeds i’ve seen during our first visit, which I suppose is the reason why the water isn’t that clear as it was before. Back on my first visit, I’ve spotted plenty of starfishes too of varying colors, including blue, but this time, there’s isn’t as much anymore and all I’ve seen were the brown ones. We  walked towards the shoreline on the left side of the island up to the far back where the mangroves are but there isn’t much to see too. By 10 pm, we were ready to leave the island for coto mines in Zambales.
Magalawa island’s entry point is in Brgy Panolingan in Palauig. It is 30.8Kms away from Iba public market thru the national highway. From that point will be 5.7 kilometers of rough terrain (average speed of less than 10kms/hr); then 2.3 kms of concrete, and then another kilometre of extremely rough terrain (average speed of 5kms/hr) to Oslet’s residence (the designated parking area and jump off point for the boat to the island; Paid parking at P100. It took us an hour and 14 minutes from Iba Public market to the jump off point. From Iba, there is a Y-road where left points to Palauig and right points to Candelaria. Either way takes you to the entry point in Barangay panolingan, but the Candelaria route will be faster i suppose.  There will be some stores before the jump off point but in case of cigarettes, better have your Marlboro or Winston ready beforehand because most of what you’ll get there are the Fortune, Mighty, Champion brands. As for liquor, they have spirits, d’bar, gin, emperador, red horse and colt 45 (I didn’t see san migh light or strong ice there; don’t even expect gilbey’s or tanduay ice or vodka cruiser J ).
Next to the island is San Salvador island which has white sand too. It is a bigger island and has far more families/inhabitants residing in the island. The boatman on our first visit to Magalawa island however said the seafloor is quite rocky, though when I see some pictures online, it seems to be just as good as magalawa. It will be a convenient sidetrip for a magalawa visit.
Magalawa is known by the way for ‘sandflies.’ A day after my first visit to the island, i got some itching which looked like mosquito bites. My friends who went with me on the first trip experienced the same. Another friend went to the island a week after and had the same thing. Before this second visit, i’ve read some more articles about it, and it seems, all visitors had the same complain. And, I wasn’t wrong. Just hours after we left the island, I got the itching again L urgggh!

the group along with the newfound friends for a final take before leaving island
getting ready to leave

the other white sand island; nearby San Salvador island


update:
As of last year 2013, Magalawa island is now charging P150 for daytrip and P300 for overnight; Nothing has changed from the island from the time I first visited, except for that the water has gone unclear, and reef is almost bald. Suggesting Silanguin Cove as an alternative; Jump off is also closer.
Whenever I have internet on my phone, and have nothing in mind to do over the internet, my final resort would be zooming on my google maps to find some great islands to check out. With pangasinan and zambales being my convenient destination, I have come across magalawa island. Thru google search, I got some information about the island, until I finally got to their facebook account; took their details and then organized a side trip along with my friends on a comeback tour i had to Potipot Island in Candelaria.

creepiness ahead

arrival in the island
Getting to the island for the first time was horrible. We got lost here and there, going back and forth the national highway. We had to ask the locals around who apparently are not so familiar either, who pointed us towards brgy San Juan. 

here's a video of how horrible the san juan route is during our first visit:



Being the locals we trusted them enough and took that route. We have come across several aged bridges; Even those where we had to stop and waited for a passer-by to confirm that it is passable by motor vehicles. The terrain goes worst as we forward, until we had to get the directions from the resort owners who confirmed we’ve taken the wrong route.

preparing dinner

got them in IBA public market; squid was at P60 per kilo (w/c in pampanga was at P140) and the fish (whatever it's called) was P42 for the piece (P70/kilo)


nom nom nom
There was no choice but to take a U-turn; 3 hours lost. It was quite late, almost 9pm, when we got to the jump-off point (Oslet’s house). The day after, my friend who took the camera left it on the shore and when he rose from the water, the camera’s wet and non-functional. The water has risen abruptly.

socials with the other guests of the island
It was quite disappointing that we did not recover even a single picture; All we had were those poor resolution shots and videos from our phones.

good morning magalawa
Last Saturday, Aug 20, we scheduled a trip to Coto mines in Masinloc Zambales. Unfortunately, we got to zambales so late, around 5pm, and when I called our contact person for coto mines, he said we might not be allowed to get in at that time. We didn’t have a choice but to find somewhere else to stay for the meantime, and spending the night in Magalawa Island will be a very good alternative. First, it will be nearby and would allow us to quickly jump to Coto mines in the morning, and second, So I can get pictures (by making it a point that I don’t leave the camera on the shoreline).



The resort is a bit improved this time. They had life vests on the boat; There was electricity to light the island on nightime; And there are airconditioned rooms for the more refined guests. They’ve also put up some better comfort rooms, as opposed to what was only available then during our first visit. They are also serving food nowadays for the no-cook travellers. And yes, the entrance charges were hiked too; What used to be P50 for a day trip is now P100, and the P100 overnight fee is now P300.

signature jump

another way to do it

alternative to the jumpshot :-)

Just like our first visit, by the time we reached the island, it was quite late. Too good I had the food ready from home and all we had to do was boil rice and fire up the charcoal for the barbeque. Apart from us, there were 2 more groups who pitched tent on the island. One of the groups joined us on the socials after dinner, who, after telling them about our plans the next day and what I have heard about coto, said they’ll go with us to coto.
walang magawa

We slept at half past three, after some good sharing-whatever-you-could-talk-about, and by 6am, I woke up to prepare the breakfast. The bad thing is, I think I forgot to keep the rellenong bangus inside the tent, so when we woke up, I couldn’t find a trace. I think the dogs took them (shiiit!!! I couldn’t get over it even the next day!). What’s left is the Maling and Tofu we bought in Iba Public Market.

Right after breakfast, we swam, and this time, it seems they’ve trimmed the meter high seaweeds i’ve seen during our first visit, which I suppose is the reason why the water isn’t that clear as it was before. Back on my first visit, I’ve spotted plenty of starfishes too of varying colors, including blue, but this time, there’s isn’t as much anymore and all I’ve seen were the brown ones. We  walked towards the shoreline on the left side of the island up to the far back where the mangroves are but there isn’t much to see too. By 10 pm, we were ready to leave the island for coto mines in Zambales.
Magalawa island’s entry point is in Brgy Panolingan in Palauig. It is 30.8Kms away from Iba public market thru the national highway. From that point will be 5.7 kilometers of rough terrain (average speed of less than 10kms/hr); then 2.3 kms of concrete, and then another kilometre of extremely rough terrain (average speed of 5kms/hr) to Oslet’s residence (the designated parking area and jump off point for the boat to the island; Paid parking at P100. It took us an hour and 14 minutes from Iba Public market to the jump off point. From Iba, there is a Y-road where left points to Palauig and right points to Candelaria. Either way takes you to the entry point in Barangay panolingan, but the Candelaria route will be faster i suppose.  There will be some stores before the jump off point but in case of cigarettes, better have your Marlboro or Winston ready beforehand because most of what you’ll get there are the Fortune, Mighty, Champion brands. As for liquor, they have spirits, d’bar, gin, emperador, red horse and colt 45 (I didn’t see san migh light or strong ice there; don’t even expect gilbey’s or tanduay ice or vodka cruiser J ).
Next to the island is San Salvador island which has white sand too. It is a bigger island and has far more families/inhabitants residing in the island. The boatman on our first visit to Magalawa island however said the seafloor is quite rocky, though when I see some pictures online, it seems to be just as good as magalawa. It will be a convenient sidetrip for a magalawa visit.
Magalawa is known by the way for ‘sandflies.’ A day after my first visit to the island, i got some itching which looked like mosquito bites. My friends who went with me on the first trip experienced the same. Another friend went to the island a week after and had the same thing. Before this second visit, i’ve read some more articles about it, and it seems, all visitors had the same complain. And, I wasn’t wrong. Just hours after we left the island, I got the itching again L urgggh!

the group along with the newfound friends for a final take before leaving island
getting ready to leave

the other white sand island; nearby San Salvador island


update:
As of last year 2013, Magalawa island is now charging P150 for daytrip and P300 for overnight; Nothing has changed from the island from the time I first visited, except for that the water has gone unclear, and reef is almost bald. Suggesting Silanguin Cove as an alternative; Jump off is also closer.
Read More »

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