Trying glamping near Manila for the first time? We went on a roadtrip to Cavinti, Laguna to find BLOC Campsite where you can enjoy camping beside the lake.
For the longest time, I have always wanted to try “glamping” or glamorous camping — where tent-pitching meets Instagram.
My boyfriend and I shared a love for mountain climbing and the outdoors at the start of our relationship. Since then, we’ve tried riding motorcycles across towns, grilling liempo within forests, and even camping beside beaches. It only made sense that if we’re ever to get engaged or married, it’s going to be outdoors.
It was in BLOC Campsite in Cavinti, Laguna that he chose to create this moment for us. So allow me to a review about the place we chose to get engaged.
Our Glamping Experience at BLOC Campsite
At 4 AM, we left Taytay, Rizal to drive to BLOC Campsite. I consider Cavinti as a relatively remote east side of Laguna because it was already very close to Quezon, the east border. Instead of going via Manila, we drove through Rizal towns until we reach the towns of Laguna. It was more or less a 3-5 hour drive depending on the town traffic.
Upon arrival at the campsite, my first impression was that it was truly Instagrammable for a province with such raw beauty and a remote location. I thought, “Wow, people drive all the way to Cavinti just to make it here!”
My second impression was that it was also a bit small. Since it’s between private lands along a man-made lake, we only access a small portion of the shore. Still, if you’re keen on glamping and just unwinding, this isn’t too bad.
The sunny but cool weather made BLOC Campsite look more beautiful in the afternoon. The sun filters through the trees, grass, and lake and it was such a sight to behold. The tents were nicely placed between each other and prepared beforehand, so you can just sit back, shoot selfies, and take naps. At nighttime, it was also beautiful because of the yellow lights, bonfire, and outdoor grilling.
Overall, it was a great place to be intimate because of the exclusive feel and poor signals. The campsite really encouraged bonding over cooking food and relaxing at our mini-porch and hammocks. It was refreshing to breathe fresh air, take strolls, and watching sunsets here.
Aside from the fact that we got engaged here, I look back at our glamping experience with much fondness.
GlampingxBLOC Campsite Review
Because he was planning to propose, we had the prettiest tent at GlampingxBLOC. At our mini-porch, we had two hammocks, picnic tables and chairs, grills, faux fireplace, and icebox for some grillin’ and chillin’.
Our GlampingxBLOC tent had layers of airbeds covered with pillows, fleece blankets, and sheets. Honestly, it was a bit awkward to sleep in an airbed because it makes sounds and feels wobbly. Our tent was cool inside because it had screened windows and two electric fans (one even had a mist sprayer!).
Since the staff was feeling extra, our tent had two panda stuffed toys, heart-shaped swan towels, and fake roses inside. We also had picnic tables and chairs indoors, which came in handy because it rained during dinnertime. Though signal is poor in the area, we had our own sockets so we didn’t have any problem with power. Another great thing was that there were fairy lights inside the tent aside from fluorescent ones.
The tricky part is that because our GlampingxBLOC tent was so pretty, sometimes other guests would wander into our porch. Haha! Some areas of the tent also leaked rainwater, but not too much. Laying a towel on the floor will solve the problem. The most challenge we saw was that the toilet and bath are shared, with only 3 cubicles in total. It might get pretty busy especially during check-out time at noon.
More Cavinti, Laguna attractions
Since check-in time is at 2 PM, we toured some nearby tourist spots in Cavinti to make the most of our trip. Here are just some of the nearby attractions we visited:
Cavinti Church. Because the restaurants are still closed and are rare in Cavinti town proper, we went to the public market and had lugaw (porridge) and spaghetti for breakfast. Then, we walked back to Cavinti Church, which was built in 1621. One of the tales built into Cavinti Church was that an image of El Salvador del Mundo (relating to the transfiguration of Jesus) was found in the location.
Cavinti is known for weaving pandan fiber and have vied to be the makers of the largest pandan mat in the world, so you might want to buy souvenir pandan hats and mats here.
Cavinti Falls / Pagsanjan Falls. Every Filipino student has heard about Cavinti Falls or Pagsanjan Falls in our elementary school books. I can say that it is definitely a must-try! From Cavinti, so we took the 568 steps going to the waterfalls. The trail included rappelling down two 90-degree ladder paths loved by adrenaline junkies.
At Cavinti Falls, our boatmen steered past waterfalls where the pressure was extremely strong! We had a hard time opening our eyes and taking photos below the waterfalls, but it was truly magical inside that mini-cave. We also did a “back massage” by lying face down our bamboo rafts and letting the waterfall run across our backs!
On the way back, you may opt to either climb up the 568 steps again or take a boat going to the nearby town of Pagsanjan. Here are the Cavinti Falls adventure rates:
- Trekking adventure: PHP 285 / pax
- Trekking + Boat ride: PHP 645 / pax
- Both inclusive of rappelling, tour guide, balsa (bamboo raft) experience, life vest, and Cavinti Falls experience. However, you are encouraged to tip the boatmen. We suggest PHP 100 for a group or PHP 25 per guest would be more than enough.
BOOK NOW: Pagsanjan Falls Private Day Tour
- Duration: 9 AM – 5 PM
- Places to see: 17km boat trip, gorges over a hundred feet high, Tropical Resort, Devil’s Cave, etc.
- Notes: Children aged 0-3 are not allowed to join; Meet-up at Starbucks SM Mall of Asia
- Price: PHP 3,550
Other attractions in Cavinti, Laguna. Near the BLOC Campsite is Bumbungan River Eco-Park (PHP 15 / pax) and Pueblo El Salvador Eco-Park (at PHP 270 / pax), which are nature exploration adventures. Other waterfall attractions within an hour’s drive away are Hulugan Falls (requires about an hour trek), Calminque or Ninja Falls, Sumacab Twin Falls, and Majayjay Falls. Fees here are very minimal. On your way back to Manila, you can also visit the Japanese Garden and Caliraya Lake.
One of the destinations still in my bucketlist is the Cavinti Underground River and Cave Complex because it has been told to rival that of Puerto Princesa‘s. The fee is pricier and includes a 4×4 truck trip and various trail difficulties.
BLOC Camp Site Rates and Activities
What’s tricky about the BLOC Campsite rates is that it may vary depending on the season. I would highly suggest you either book via AirBNB, as it will automatically compute the rates based on the check-in period and number of guests. You can also inquire on their Facebook page for updated rates:
|Tent Size||Price||Can Accommodate|
|Small Tent||PHP 1,500||1-2 pax|
|Medium Tent (teepee-type)||PHP 2,000||2 pax|
|Medium Tent (cabin-type)||PHP 2,200||2-4 pax|
|Big Tent||PHP 2,500||4-6 pax|
|Big Tent||PHP 3,500||8-9 pax|
Promo rates. They also have glamping promo rates announced on social media. The following rates include swimming with safety life vest, fishing (bring your own fishing rods), BBQ grill with 1 set of charcoal, 1 set of firewood for the bonfire, picnic tables and benches, and unlimited use of kayak or swan boat:
|Can accommodate||Promo Rate|
|4 pax||PHP 4,444|
|6 pax||PHP 6,666|
|8 pax||PHP 8,888|
Activities. The grounds are free for guests to use, so you may bring your own games here like badminton rackets, Frisbee discs, or fishing rods. You can even swim at the lake, provided that you wear the safety vest inside your tents. What’s best is that you can even bring your furry friends, as this is a pet-friendly place.
There are also many activities in BLOC Campsite which you can avail of for a fee:
|Inflatable Boats / Floaters||PHP 100 / hour||Minimum of 3 hours|
|Kayak||PHP 200 / hour||Minimum of 3 hours|
|Stand-up Paddle Board||PHP 300 / hour||Minimum of 3 hours|
|Island-hopping boat trip||PHP 100 / pax||Minimum of 10 pax|
|Floating Garden dock||PHP 500||One-time|
|Floating Garden dock||PHP 1,000||Overnight use|
Food. There are no corkage fees, so you are free to bring your own food and drinks inside BLOC Campsite. If you’re too lazy to bring food or cook, you can pre-order breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals at only PHP 100 per silog meals (fried rice, eggs, and meat), coffee (PHP 50), and ice (PHP 10/pack) to be served at your tent.
Tip: Bring marshmallows for roasting at the bonfire and make s’mores!
Things to know about your Laguna glamping trip
- Best time to travel. Going during the sunny seasons are best since it can be quite a hassle to stay in tents during the rainy seasons. Good weather will also influence some of the activities such as island hopping trips, kayaking, and outdoor hanging out, so be sure to check the weather before booking.
- Total ride time. Since you are required to pass several towns coming from Manila, I suggest leaving in the early morning like in our case was 3:30 AM. We took the Rizal-Laguna-Quezon roads because there’s less traffic along the way. There are some parts of Cavinti that have narrow roads, blind turns, and uphill climbs, so be sure your car is in the best condition and you bring emergency packs.
- Where to eat. There are plenty of fancy restaurants in the nearby town of Pagsanjan — it’s really much like Manila along its strip! If you want to go low-cost, you can try eating at roadside karinderias or public markets, as we did. It’s still better to bring your own food, though, especially that there are no corkarge fees at BLOC Campsite.
- What to wear. If you’re going to other Cavinti attractions, I suggest you dress for adventure. Cover up your skin to avoid scratches and skin damage. While at the BLOC Campsite, wear OOTD-worthy clothes!
- Things to bring. Insect-repellents are a must-have especially that you will be camping by the lake. You can also bring your own games and books since there will be a lot of time lazing around. Lastly, having data signals and phone chargers are very important as the road to camp site can be confusing.
Aside from the fact that he proposed to me here, he BLOC Campsite has truly made my first glamping trip memorable. I don’t think I can duplicate our experience here anywhere else.
P.S. Read our engagement story for more photos.
BLOC Camp Site
Passion Cove Estate, Brgy. 4013, Bukal-Cansuso Road, Brgy. Bukal, Cavinti, Laguna
Contact: 0936 969 9644
E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org