I always play safe. I take little to no risk when it comes to life. Seldom would I make world-churning decisions and only when it’s absolutely necessary. I’m a Cancer after all. I invest so much in my security. But living on the edge doesn’t seem that bad of an idea either. Taking a leap into something that scares the heck out of me is one of the things I dread and enjoy at the same time. Because it’s when I feel the most alive. So in my search for extreme adventure to feed my desire for a rush of adrenaline, I came across Real Whitewater Rafting. Here’s how it all went down.
My Real Whitewater Rafting Experience
Whitewater rafting is not new to me. I have experienced it before on my trip to Cagayan De Oro. It was hard to miss since it’s what that city is famous for. I think it’s safe to say they pioneered this sport in the Philippines. And they did a pretty good job at it that other destinations in the country were compelled to follow through. Sarangani and Davao for instance which would hardly settle for second best. But in my opinion, the one in Chico River of Kalinga holds the most potential and that of Antique is another kind of exciting. To think a town near the Metro has it too. Now that makes things more interesting.
I only know Quezon for its islands and some of its mountains. It didn’t really occur to me that it is home to surfing and whitewater rafting too. After all, our country has more than 7000 islands and 81 provinces that despite years of traveling, I’ve only been able to touch the tip of the iceberg. There are still places I have yet to unravel and that makes me more eager to discover what else is out there. This trip to Real is one of the many little steps I’m taking to fulfilling that dream. It’s just baffling to me how the outdoors can be both so scary and wonderful at the same time.
Our whitewater rafting in Real began under the drizzling skies. It was another factor that added spice to this adventure. We all know how rivers swell up and become wild whenever it rains. It scared me but got me all the more excited. It’s crazy stupid but I love it. Upon arriving in Brgy. Tanauan, we quickly ran through health and safety protocols and the registration. I kinda wondered why there wasn’t any intense briefing unlike in Cagayan De Oro but quickly shrugged it off. Different places. Totally different practices.
Using a concrete staircase, my friends and I started descending to the river where two of our tour guides await. It was quite slippery but what got me was the sound of the gushing water nearby. It was music to my ears. The misty rainforest was also a beauty to behold. It was like home to all things that made me nostalgic. It took us 10 minutes to cover the descent. Down in the riverbanks await our guides with the raft, life vests, and headgears. We donned the life vests and headgears right away. After a few snaps on our camera, we started rafting.
Rafting normally requires each member to paddle but here in Real, we were merely passengers on a rollercoaster ride. The paddling and maneuvering of the raft were left to the care of our guides for that one hour or so adventure. We were to cover 4 Kms of raging river water. It started on calm waters then followed by some mild rapids in between. The ride was pretty much uneventful 90% of the time that I started to get really bored. I began wondering whether there is anything in it that’s actually worth my 500 bucks. If it wasn’t for the calming scenery I was witnessing while aboard the raft and the fun company I had with me, I might have jumped into the river to entertain myself a bit.
Despite the drizzling skies, the river seemed calm, clean, and clear. I love the dense forest surrounding it and how it teems with so much life. I saw several monitor lizards along the banks. There may be snakes too but they are creatures I’d rather not see up close. Our guide might have sensed my disinterest. I tried making it not too obvious but I guess it still showed. I asked whether the ride gets any more thrilling in the long run. He only uttered, “You’ll see.” as if warning me of what was coming next.
We were down to the last stretch of the rafting when things started a turnaround. This time, we faced four different series of wild rapids and encountered a free fall as if falling from a waterfall that was almost two meters deep. My excitement was taken a notch higher that I was no longer faking it. It was indeed one heck of a fun adventure that although it still failed to make my stomach flutter, I enjoyed it at its last moments. This experience taught me patience and to always give things countless chances until it’s able to shine without inhibition.
P.S. That last sentence only applies to some things in life and not to people who repeatedly and deliberately choose failure as if thinking you have a well of chances that doesn’t run dry as you forgive and understand them time and time again.
How To Go To Real Whitewater Rafting
Public Transport – Ride a Raymond Bus in their Sampaloc Manila Terminal to Real (3-4 Hrs | P250/head/way). Alternatively, you can ride a van going to Real. They are parked near the Raymond Bus Terminal. Fare is P300/head/way. Alight in Tanauan Elementary School (Tanauan ES).
Private Vehicle – From Edsa, turn right to Ortigas Avenue. Continue driving to Ortigas Avenue Extension then E. Rodriguez Avenue. Continue driving to Antipolo and Tanay. Once in Tanay, trace the Tanay-Pililla Road. After Pililla, continue tracing the Famy-Real Road until you reach your destination.
Note: You can pin Tanauan White River Rafting on Waze or Google for the exact location. Please know that mobile data coverage is intermittent upon entering Brgy. Tanauan but you should reach the site after 10 – 15 minutes.
Useful Information About Real Whitewater Rafting
- Reservation is not necessary. Walk-ins are welcome as early as 6 AM until 4 PM.
- Wear comfortable clothes appropriate for whitewater rafting such as swimming shorts, dry-fit shirts, and rashguard.
- For footwear, I recommend trekking sandals. Flipflops might get lost during the ride and it will be hard for the guides to retrieve them.
- There’s only one toilet and bathroom used for changing clothes and washing up in front of Tanauan ES. If you’re kind of fussy about toilets, I suggest you do the changing prior to going to the whitewater rafting site.
- Upon arriving at the site, guests are required to undergo the health and safety protocol such as temp check and logging in of information. Fees are not collected yet.
- Wearing of face mask and face shield is required for each guest but no longer necessary when the rafting starts.
- The whitewater rafting fee is fixed at P500. If you come in a group of 10, one of you is going to be free of charge.
- Waterproof your valuables. Put them in waterproof cases or a drybag.
- Should you wish to include camping at the beach in your itinerary, you might find my Real Beach Camping + Whitewater Rafting blog useful.
- There are two waterfalls nearby that could make an optional side trip. The fees are P40 and P50 respectively.
Budget & Other Essentials
|BUDGET (5 Pax on a rented van)||Rented Van @ P6500/7 – P929
Rented Cottage @ P3000/7 – P429
Food – P325
Whitewater Rafting – P500
Resort Entrance Fee – P50
Total – P2233/person
Note: Our friends who were not able to make it was kind enough to pay their share for the van and cottage.
|RATES||Long Beach Resort Rates
Open Cottage – P1000 Day Tour | P2000 Overnight
Note: Renting a cottage is required.
Whitewater Rafting – P500/Person
|SAMPLE ITINERARY||Day 1
0500 Meet Up
0500 Wake Up
FB Page: https://www.facebook.com/realtourismph/
Mobile: 0905 364 1041
Whitewater Rafting: 0926 223 7583 | 0951 216 6915
Long Beach Resort: Kuya Boy – 0947 711 1192
Van: Kuya Ramir – 0955 140 5550
There you have it, lovelies! I hope you enjoyed this blog as much as I enjoyed sharing it with you. Don’t forget to tag your friends and plan that trip now. For questions and comments, just leave them below. Until next time. Ciao!