Part of the growing culture in the Philippines especially for millennials is looking for the best travel destination to enjoy. However, if you find yourself taking a long route of asphalt concrete road, then you might enjoy the journey as well.
If you are planning to go somewhere in Luzon, if possible, you could put into consideration taking one of these routes. You could make the most of your travel while on the move before arriving at your destination.
Another reason for taking these scenic routes is to just travel for the sake of joyride. As the saying goes: “life is a journey, not a destination,” you might not notice how the time passed by as you get amazed at the experiences of every inch of your ride.
Enough with the introductions, here are the 10 scenic routes you can consider to take for a great joyride:
1. Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX)
North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) would always be the smart route going northbound coming from Metro Manila with the peaceful view of the vast plains of Central Luzon.
Another northbound expressway, the Subic-Clark-Tarlac-Expressway (SCTEX) has more than its fair share of charms. You might have taken this road already going to either Baguio City or La Union.
Another joyride to consider is traveling through SCTEX going to Olongapo City. The smooth road paved through above the slightly sloping hills and even cutting through the hills.
An important warning: You might get tempted to drive fast as you smoothly traveled the long-stretched road, but keep in mind that this route has a speed limit of 100 kilometers per hour.
2. Patapat Viaduct
This route got amazing views enough to consider Patapat Viaduct as the most photographed road among the list. The scenic bridge embraced the coast of Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte. The snaked road along the shore was built 31 meters above the sand and with a length of 1.3 kilometers making it the fifth-longest bridge in the Philippines.
Located on the most northern tip of Luzon, you can take the lazy drive through this coastal bridge and get soaked in the sunlit views of Pasaleng Bay.
3. Jamboree Road
If you are old enough (or at least you know an older relative), you might be aware that this road was once a muddy track. The Jamboree Road is a well-known route for the Boy Scout of the Philippines Camp in Mt. Makiling.
Now a fully-paved concrete, Jamboree Road could bring back a lot of memories of your childhood. You can drive through Mt. Makiling’s rich forests with roadside fruit stands to stopover. By chance, you might also be sold with hybrid fruits of folks from the University of the Philippines.
Another interesting part of the road is the so-called Magnetic Hill. In this area, the law of gravity seems to make an exemption. If you try to stop your car and put it in neutral, it looks like you are going upward the hill. This is fun to try, but be cautious and keep in mind that you are still on a public road. Also, the Magnetic Hill if observed in a different angle, it is actually going down, enough to conclude this is just an optical illusion. You can decide for yourself.
4. The road inside Magat Dam Tourism Complex
There is this unnamed road located at one of the largest dams in the Philippines, the Magat Dam.
This road inside the dam enters through a junction through Burgos-General Aguinaldo Road. On either side of the road are sights to enjoy as the bordered Magat River on one side and the vast reservoir on the other. The reservoir itself spans 4,450 hectares and stretches as far as you can see. If the timing of your road trip is right, you might see the fully-loaded Magat Dam releasing its water in an epic way.
5. Lobo-Malabrigo-Laiya Road
This road is one of the thrill-seeking bikers’ favorite due to its winding and sloping route that traces through Batangas. Some part of the road is still in dirt which adds up for bikers’ reason to take this road.
The road stretched to 48 kilometers is mostly paved. Many parts of the pavements come from the fact that beach resorts within the area are getting more popular.
For some less-traveled paths, unpaved roads were almost placed beside the seashore. Also in this coastal road, you can find Malabrigo, the oldest working lighthouse in the Philippines.
6. Lumban-Caliraya-Cavinti Road
Going for a smooth day drive with plenty of scenic views? Then a cruise for this road going to Caliraya Dam in Lumban, Laguna might be the best option for you.
Driving to a chill and winding uphill will lead you to Caliraya Lake which is actually a man-made reservoir. Caliraya also became a recreational site. Water sports, fishing, and kayaking are among the list of activities. However, having strong winds, the lake is not ideal for swimming.
If you are just for the joyride, then the journey around the lake, the towns, and the resorts is more than enough for your satisfaction.
7. Halsema Highway (Cordillera Administrative Region)
You might not enjoy this road if you fear heights. The 150 kilometers long highway, with the high elevated path that connects Baguio City and the Bontoc Municipality, is considered deadly for its sharp curves and steep elevation.
Without this road, many travelers will have a hard time going to Sagada. Practically, this road is the only way to access the remotest parts of Cordillera.
If you love the highlands, then dare yourself to go to the highest point of the highway at 2,225 meters above sea level.
8. Manila East Road
For a scenic drive with lots of stopovers for food and shopping, taking the Manila East Road is the right fit for you. This stretched road leads to Pililla, Rizal which is known for the Pilillia Windmill Farm.
The lively towns and the 27 huge wind turbines of 125 meters height are great anticipations for the journey. Perfect for taking Instagram-worthy pictures.
9. Dalton Pass
Sometimes, having a joyride is not just about the scenic views but also the history behind the place. The Dalton Pass might be a good example of enjoying the journey while learning the history of the past.
This route that connects Nueva Ecija and Nueva Viscaya was once the passageway for the bloody Battle of Balete Pass during World War 2. The alliance of American and Filipino troops against the Japanese forces cost thousands of lives. The American General Dalton, to whom this road was named, also died in the said battle.
Many historical markers and memorials can be found along the route to honor and commemorate the bloody battle. The path of this road is quite tricky which goes across the Caraballo and Siera Madre mountain ranges. After experiencing the beauty of the place and its history, you could say the travel is all worth it.
10. Ternate-Nasugbu Highway
Another bikers’ favorite route is the Ternate-Nasugbu Highway. This route offers scenic views of the bay and lush forest paving the way from Nasugbu Bay, Batangas to Ternate, Cavite.
This is ideal for nature lovers as part of the route is cutting through Mount Palay-Palay National Park with greener surroundings. Perhaps, you can even have an encounter with some playful monkeys. Not to mention the highway also passed through the Philippines’ longest road tunnel, the Kaybiang tunnel with a length of 300 meters.