This weekend getaway has numerous natural attractions, bed and breakfasts, and restaurants.
By Kristy Texon


Known as the resort province of the Philippines, Laguna provides a nearby getaway for Manila-based travelers and residents who need to unwind. Between Laguna's lakes, falls, bed and breakfasts, resorts, and churches, the province has something for everyone.


  • Miguel Lopez de Legaspi conquered Laguna in 1571, and after seven years, the Franciscans started with their mission to spread Christianity.
  • In 1688, Pagsanjan replaced Bay as the capital of the province. Sta. Cruz was declared the capital in 1852.
  • Laguna de Bay, which drains to the Manila Bay via the Pasig River, was the locals' way to Manila.
  • Laguna was among the first eight provinces that joined the revolt against Spain.
  • Gen. Tomoyuki Yamashita was hanged in Brgy. Timugan in Los Baņos.

Travelers' Attractions

  • Dotting Laguna's towns are stone churches in varying architectural styles. These structures date back to the Spanish times.
  • Calamba, Laguna is the hometown of the country's national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. A replica of the house where Rizal spent his childhood is among the main attractions of the province.
  • Mt. Makiling, a dormant volcano, is a popular spot for hiking. The volcano is named after Maria Makiling, a diwata in local mythology.
  • Natural attractions abound in Laguna. Travelers can choose to visit Laguna's springs, falls, and lakes. The Magdapio Falls (or Pagsanjan Falls) in Cavinti is among the most popular spots.
  • Laguna is home to institutions such as the University of the Philippines, Los Baņos, Philippine High School for the Arts, and the International Rice Research Institute.
  • Quaint restaurants that have a homey feel make Laguna a great spot for food trips. These restos usually offer Pinoy comfort food--and the food is often more affordable than its Manila counterparts.
  • The province offers native food products like buko pie, puto Biņan, espasol, uraro, and kesong puti, among many others.

Getting There and Away

Laguna is roughly a two-hour drive from Manila through the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) / Alabang-Calamba-Sto. Tomas Expressway (ACTEx). Travelers commuting to Laguna can ride the HM or Green Star buses headed for Sta. Cruz.

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Travelers can take a dip in one of Hidden Valley Springs' natural pools.

Hidden Valley Springs

Among Laguna's well-known resorts is the Hidden Valley Springs in Alaminos.

Casa San Pablo

Casa San Pablo is one of Laguna's well-loved bed and breakfasts.

Casa San Pablo

Each of Casa San Pablo's rooms have homey and unique interiors.

Liliw Church

Only a wall from the original structure of the St. John the Baptist Church in Liliw stands today.

PCC Dairy Carabao's Milk

Carabao's milk from the Philippine Carabao center is one of the must-tries in Los Baņos.


Liliw, with its streets of footwear shops, is known as the country's footwear capital.
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