Enjoying the leisure with nature is the treat that I had when I visited Antipolo's Real Cove Resort in Rizal for a company teambuilding last May. The trip was a good opportunity to rediscover Antipolo again and the province of Rizal as a good nearby metropolis destination for Summer.
|Antipolo's Real Cove.|
The resort is located at the base of the mountain and basically hilly. But what I like about its surroundings is its trees and plant abounded surroundings that makes the place cooler even on high summer day. The tall trees that gives instant shades from the hot rays of the sun were refreshing in sight and very nature inspired place. This is a true testament to the resorts' slogan - enjoying the leisure with nature.
|Welcome to Real Cove!|
Meanwhile, Rizal is a province that made the CALABARZON Region , just 16 kilometers east of Manila. The province was named after the country's national hero, José Rizal. Rizal is bordered by Metro Manila to the west, the province of Bulacan to the north, Quezon to the east and Laguna province to the south. The province also lies on the northern shores of Laguna de Bay, the largest lake in the country. Rizal is a mountainous province perched on the western slopes of the southern portion of the Sierra Madre mountain range. (Source)
|One of the public pools of the resort.|
|Grilled fish, perfect for chow time.|
We also had a private pool near our private room area where we are the only one who can use it but we are also allowed to use the other 2 public pools of the resort at our own leisure.
|Extreme swimming time!|
I ended my night together my colleagues on a relaxing night swimming while the others opt to sing in the video karaoke all-night long.
The following day, I woke up with a painful body. This is what I get from last night's exhausting and over the edge swimming activity due to excitement! Despite of muscle aches all over my body, I need to wake up early to grab the opportunity of the morning's good atmosphere for a mountain hiking. Real Cove has a 400 step mountain hike that is a very good activity within the resort's facilities. The resort sits on the base of a mountain which the resort also owns. The steps are paved and guided so you won't be lost when you reach the summit.
If you think a couch potato can do it, think again. The 400 step is an extreme challenge! I started on 50 step first lap together with my colleagues who want to try hiking too. While the steps are pave, the heat of summer sun and no air breeze along the trail made it difficult and hot. Yet I'm glad that with all the sweats I had, I loose a lot of calories!!!
|We're almost there - 2 more laps to go!|
|Some of my hiking colleagues enjoying the hike adventure.|
|After 400 steps!|
|The beautiful view of Rizal and Antipolo at the top.|
|Beautiful mountain ranges can be seen at the top of the viewing area.|
|The hiking trail down.|
The trail down the mountain prove to be difficult this time, as the steps are quite steep and the view is nauseating. But with guided and moderate steps, I managed to finish the hike down. After a total of 800 steps of hiking - up and down the mountain, I felt a need to rest. But my colleague invited me to do a garden walk at the back of the resort. The resort had a shady gardens perfect for afternoon chats and nature explorations. This is also near the trail of ATV Rides that the resort is also offering. The garden is nice and perfect for souvenirs photos.
|Garden walk at Real Cove.|
After a quite long rest, the company's service fetch us. Since there still enough time, we asked for a sidetrip to Antipolo Cathedral. While the cathedral is famous for the Catholic devotees, it is also famous for being the shrine of Marian icon, Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage (Nuestra Senora de la Paz Y Buenviaje). According to history, the icon, after repeated safe journeys between Mexico and the Philippines early in the 17th century, became known as the heavenly protector of Spain’s galleons.You can view the history and artifacts about it, offered a prayer and touch the icon on a separate backdoor trail of the cathedral. We did this after a short attendance to an ongoing mass. You can also buy candle and icon souvenirs and have it bless within the grounds of the church. Outside the grounds, there are numerous tiangges selling popular pasalubongs from Antipolo like cashews and suman – a local delicacy made out of sticky rice.
We drove for 2 and a half hours back to Manila after. I have a leisure nature trip in Antipolo and though with a weary and tired body, I appreciate these discoveries in Rizal that made my last escapade of Summer 2011 a memorable one... 'til next summer.
Real Cove Resort
Provincial Road, Brgy. Dalig,
(near Antipolo - Teresa Boundary), Antipolo City, Rizal
For booking and inquiries - 710-6054/994-3616/0922-8452844/0917-8809628/0920-9513970