Mid-day in Iligan City. The sun was blaring, the wind feels humid and after walking around the city streets to chase the Dyandi festival performers, it was a day begging for some nice cool dip. I guess the people at Iligan Bloggers Society (IBS) had foresight of what participants want for that day as we were scheduled to visit the Timoga Cold Springs in Buru-un. Iliganons seem so enthusiastic whenever I mention we’re going there. They said it’s a place of “flowing swimming pools”.
Timoga Cold Springs Resorts
I shiver at the sight of a developed resort with cemented pools and pathways when we got down on a coastal road in Sitio Timoga, Buru-un. But the Timoga Cold Springs resorts wasn’t as bad as I thought when we entered. Several layers of pool and once we got higher, we saw the natural spring waters flowing. Everything was well-kept and in order. So the water from the pools on the lower floor came from the springs above. There was this natural pool with low cascades where we enjoyed having a back massage from its strong flow. Yes they resort did make some cemented pathways or bridges but they made sure the water flows freely that’s why the spring waters were clean, clear and cold. From what I read, the source of this spring water came from Lake Lanao.
The environment here is very easy-going. There may be a number of people aside from us but each have their own spaces and going about each others way to enjoy the place. The resort is large enough for groups and it is a perfect venue for picnics! Oh IBS was ahead of us again as they served us a feast for lunch. The resort allows people to bring in their own food and there are a lot of stalls along the street to buy them including one of the best lechon (suckling pig) I’ve tasted. Other goodies were the bundle of puso (rice in pandan leaves), roasted chicken, pansit and grilled fish. We ate with our bare hands and sucked out the goodness from our fingertips. After filling ourselves it was back to the cold spring water. Yes, it was that fun and refreshing!
Macaraeg-Macapagal Ancestral House
As a side-trip before we left Timoga Cold Springs, we visited the Macaraeg-Macapagal Ancestral House, the house by the late first lady and mother of the former president, Evangeline Macaraeg-Macapagal. It’s a beautiful ancestral house at the foot of the springs enough to hear its calming stream. It represents the grandeur of the family and I can only imagine how they have lavishly lived in this home. Aside from the semi-seductive painting of the young Gloria Arroyo, we also saw a her own playhouse. A very interesting visit place to visit when in Sitio Timoga.
The Timoga Cold Springs is at Sitio Timoga, Buru-un, Iligan City. There are several way to get there. From Iligan City, ride a jeep bound to Buru-un and tell the driver or conductor to drop you off at Timoga. Fare is Php 12. Taxis can also take you there and fare would usually go from Php 100-180.
There are a number of cold spring resorts in the area but they have the standard rates of Php 50 entrance fee per pax and rental charge of Php 60-500 for tables and cottages.
Ferdz Decena is an award-winning travel photographer, writer and blogger. His works has found print in publications such as Singapore Airlines’s Silver Kris, Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay, Cebu Pacific’s Smile and Seair InFlight. He has also lent his expertise to various organizations like the Oceana Philippines, Lopez Group Foundation, Save the Children and World Vision, contributing quality images for their marketing materials.