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24 Hours in Antipolo

by Mimi Tiu

Located just east of Marikina and Pasig, Antipolo is the closest getaway for a short yet energizing respite from the frenetic pace of the metropolis.

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Follow this detailed, 24-hour itinerary within this scenic city, or go ahead and just pick your preferred spots and customize your own road trip—we won’t mind.

8:30 AM: Have a hearty breakfast at Burrow Café

INSTAGRAM: burrowcafe.ph

Start your day traversing 76 steps down a concrete staircase to discover a relaxing underground haven filled with rustic interiors and lush greenery. As you sit on a wrought iron garden chair, take a moment to breathe in the refreshing air from the rainforest and enjoy the ambient sounds of nearby Tungtong River. Take your pick from the all-day breakfast menu (the Tender Beef Tapa is a must-try!) and pair it with any of the hot or cold drinks (from slow drip coffee to locally brewed beer, they’ve got you covered!). Make sure to save some space for desserts such as the Dayap Crème Brulee and Crunchy Suman ala Mode, and then feel utterly satiated as you lounge in one of the café’s woven hammocks.

INSTAGRAM: burrowcafe.ph

Burrow Café
Antipolo Beehouse
113 Beverly Hills Avenue, Beverly Hills Subdivision, Taytay
(0917) 622 9795
Open from Wednesdays to Thursdays, 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM;
Fridays to Sundays, 7:00 AM - 4:00 PM

10:30 AM: Enter a world of contemporary art at Pinto Art Museum

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Open to the public since 2010, this weekend rest house-turned-private museum owned by renowned neurologist Joven R. Cuanang houses the works of some of the best Filipino modern artists. What started out as an outdoor drawing venue for a young group of artists named Salingpusa (which included the likes of Elmer Borlongan, Antonio Leano, and Jose John Santos III) gradually evolved into Mediterranean-style open villas that currently display over 200 paintings, sculptures, and installations. Not to be missed are the eight-panel “Karnabal” mural (a collaborative work of the Salingpusa crew post-People Power Revolution), Ferdinand Montemayor’s black and white triptych “Winner!” which captures the frenzied blur of a triathlon, and Alab Pagarigan’s haunting wire and resin installation called “The Hollow Man.”

IMAGE: Mimi Tiu

Pinto Art Museum
1 Sierra Madre Street, Antipolo
(02) 697 1015
Open from Tuesdays to Sundays, 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tickets are sold at
₱200 for adults, ₱180 for senior citizens, and ₱100 for students

1:00 PM: Unwind at The Crescent Moon Café

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Get inspired amidst this colorful open-air space that offers delicious Asian food and sells stoneware ceramics. Sample the dishes from their sumptuous weekend buffet or go for their best-selling Alagao Salad (which you can top with coconut, chili, green mango, shrimp, and more), freshly cooked entrees, and sticky rice desserts—all presented on beautiful handmade kitchenware! Once you’ve had your fill, explore the secret gardens, find serenity at the koi pond, and take home a few pieces by famed potter Lanelle Abueva Fernando. If you’re lucky, you can even join a pottery workshop and leave Antipolo with a new hobby in tow.

The Crescent Moon Café and Studio Pottery
Sapang Buho Road, Barangay Dalig
(02) 234 5724
Open from Wednesdays to Sundays, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM

3:00 PM: Check into Mount Purro Nature Reserve

INSTAGRAM: aaraelissa & IMAGE: Dana Peña

Be one with nature inside this family-run eco-park. A great alternative for people searching for a romantic getaway or a barkada bonding venue just outside the city, Mount Purro Nature Reserve encourages its guests to #DisconnecttoConnect in bahay kubo-style lodging that can fit as few as two, like the casita, and as many as 6 people, like the loft cottage. Visitors with a desire to rough it can even sleep under the stars at the garden tent area.

Mount Purro Nature Reserve
Barangay Calawis
Standard check-in time is at 2:00 PM
Overnight guests have access to all of Mount Purro Nature Reserve’s facilities and pre-scheduled activities.

4:00 PM: Hike up the Laudato Si Hiking Trail

INSTAGRAM: Dana Peña

Put on your hiking shoes and commune with the natural beauty of Antipolo as you climb up the four-kilometer hiking trail at Mount Purro Nature Reserve. The quiet, verdant paths will urge you to do some soul searching while exposing you to the unique flora and fauna of the land. Over 420 meters above sea level, take in the stunning panorama of the Sierra Madre Mountain Range found at Malvar’s Peak and say a prayer of gratitude by the statue of Mother Mary before making your way down the forest.

Book a Hike, Eat, Swim day tour or an overnight cabin stay. Guided forest hikes are available every day of the week. View the complete list of rates and scheduled activities here.

6:30 PM: Indulge in a buffet of home-cooked dishes at Loli’s Kitchen

After a tiring hike, replenish your energy through farm-to-table eats lovingly prepared by the eco park owner’s mother and her friendly staff. Expect homemade Filipino dishes that make use of seasonal harvest and the finest produce handpicked from the reserve. The Pako Salad, Gising-Gising, and Polvoron are must-eats.

Loli’s Kitchen
Mount Purro Nature Reserve
The buffet dinner is served from 6:30 - 8:30 PM daily at
₱500 per head

9:00 PM: Play games, go night swimming, get a massage, or sit around the bonfire at Mount Purro Nature Reserve

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Scattered within the 36-hectare forest sanctuary are various activity areas that promote community building and holistic rejuvenation. If your squad is inherently competitive, head to the game room and play to win at billiards, table tennis, foosball, or even mahjong! If you’re more into relaxing pursuits, take a cool evening dip with the view of the majestic Mount Purro, have a one-hour traditional hilot massage at the spa to unknot your overworked muscles, or exchange stories and sing songs around the campfire.

For the complete list of amenities and activities at Mount Purro Nature Reserve, visit their official website.

11:00 PM: Have a good night’s sleep and wake up at 5 AM to check out early

RELATED: This Unique Antipolo Eco-Stay Upholds Sustainable Tourism

6:00 AM: Say a prayer at Antipolo Cathedral

IMAGE: Mimi Tiu

Catch the sunrise as you drive to this pilgrimage site frequented by Marian devotees. Enshrined in this church since the 1630s, the wooden statue of a Black Madonna earned its name Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage after safely traveling six times across the Pacific during the Galleon Trade. Attend mass as early as 6 AM, then have your vehicle blessed by signing up at the registration hall and donating a small fee. With the blessing, you get a small figurine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage to keep inside your car.

Antipolo Cathedral
P. Oliveros Street
(02) 697 0274
Open daily, from 6:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Car blessing is done daily from 7:00 AM - 11:00 AM and 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

8:00 AM: Enjoy a meal at Eggs for Breakfast Café before driving back home

INSTAGRAM: sheroseontimare

You’ll definitely get egg-cited over the creative ways fresh eggs are cooked in this breakfast place tucked away in the Antipolo events venue, Velada Estate. Customers can choose to feast on dishes that offer egg as the main star (try Eggs Benedict or Country French Omelette) or as an equally delicious supporting ingredient (order Buttermilk Pancakes with Eggs and Bacon, Beef Tapa, or One Pan Breakfast—a full platter of sausages, bacon, beans, potatoes, and mushrooms!). Even those not in the mood for eggs will appreciate the restaurant’s salad, pasta, and smoothie selection.

Eggs for Breakfast Café
Velada Estate, 21 Don Juan Street, Villa Cecilia Subdivision
Sumulong Highway, Barangay Mambugan
(02) 213 2434
Open daily, 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM

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About Mimi
A freelance editor based in Manila, Mimi Tiu finds pleasure in coming up with meticulously detailed travel itineraries, wearing layers in autumn, and chronicling her ice cream discoveries on Instagram at @nicetomitiu.

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