Embark on a picturesque journey to the heart of the Philippines, where you’ll discover the captivating city of Tagaytay. Here are some of the best things to do in Tagaytay in 2023 and beyond.
Nestled high in the mountains of Cavite, Tagaytay offers an enticing blend of cool climate, captivating views, and rich culture. It’s a city that promises serenity and excitement in equal measure, with activities ranging from admiring the awe-inspiring Taal Volcano to tasting local culinary delights. Whether you’re a thrill-seeker, a foodie, or a nature enthusiast, Tagaytay holds a vibrant kaleidoscope of experiences waiting to be explored.
About Tagaytay in the Philippines
Tagaytay is a popular tourist destination located in the province of Cavite, Philippines. It is known for its cool climate, scenic views, and proximity to Manila, the country’s capital. It’s not too far from the country’s capital, so people from NCR like to travel there all the time. Additionally, people visiting Manila often take a quick trip out to Tagaytay and head back at the end of the day.
Here are some reasons why Tagaytay is such a popular destination.
Location and Climate
Tagaytay is situated approximately 55 kilometers (34 miles) south of Manila but has a much cooler climate than the humid and warm capital. That’s because its elevation is around 2,000 feet (610 meters) above sea level, bringing a cooler climate compared to the lowland areas and making it a refreshing getaway.
Taal Volcano and Lake
Tagaytay is renowned for its breathtaking views of the Taal Volcano, which is one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines. The volcano is situated on an island within Taal Lake, and visitors can take boat rides or trek to the rim of the crater for a closer look.
Food and Restaurants
Tagaytay is famous for its culinary offerings, particularly its Bulalo, a beef shank and marrow soup (watch the Cholesterol, folks!). The city has numerous restaurants and eateries that serve a variety of dishes, ranging from local Filipino cuisine to international fare. Dining with a view is a popular experience in Tagaytay, as many establishments overlook the scenic landscape.
10 Things to Do in Tagaytay this 2023
So let’s dive in and look at the 10 things to do when you’re in Tagaytay City.
1. Ride the Ferris Wheel at Sky Ranch Tagaytay
Brimming with exhilarating rides, delightful eateries, and magnificent views of the Taal Volcano, Sky Ranch Tagaytay is a joy for all ages. This five-hectare park offers a thrilling array of attractions, from horseback riding to exciting rides.
Its seamless ticketing process and “ride all you can” promo ensure an effortless and memorable experience. It’s more than just a leisure park – it’s an unforgettable day of family fun!
2. Visit Paradizoo
Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Paradizoo. This tranquil sanctuary offers close encounters with a variety of animals, an enlightening butterfly garden with insights into their metamorphosis, and the serenity of the Flower Garden. While some areas are still bouncing back from recent challenges, the ambiance and scenery remain captivating. With future improvements, this place promises an even more enchanting experience upon your return. Paradizoo is a charming encounter with nature that leaves visitors longing for more.
3. Experience Qiwellness Living Spa and Dining
Bask in the sublime blend of old and new at Qiwellness Living Spa, just two hours from Manila. Nestled on a Tagaytay ridge, this spa combines centuries-old architecture with modern design, creating a unique ambiance overlooking Taal Lake. Upon arrival, you’re greeted with a ceremonial gong, before indulging in a revitalizing 75-minute massage and exclusive pool time. The package, perfect for couples, is completed with a sumptuous meal at the renowned Teahouse. This haven of tranquility and culinary delight promises an unforgettable retreat from city life.
4. Go to Zoori at Residence Inn
Experience a perfect blend of nature and wildlife at Zoori. With an extraordinary view of Taal Volcano, Zoori offers a wealth of animal attractions, from the Serpentarium and Eagles Ridge to the Aviary and general zoo grounds. Highlights include the entertaining animal show, spiced up with magical performances. For thrill-seekers, Zoori provides a unique chance to take on an exhilarating bike zip or cable car ride, offering panoramic views of the iconic Taal Volcano. This is a place where adventure and nature converge.
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5. Head over to Tagaytay Picnic Grove
Embrace the joy of outdoor living at Tagaytay Picnic Grove, where the beauty of Taal Lake unfolds right before your eyes. This scenic spot offers picnic tables, gazebos, and huts for rent, with options to cook and grill on-site. Its facilities extend to an eco-trail, horseback riding circuit, open field for kite flying or badminton, zipline, souvenir shops, and food stalls.
New additions to the Picnic Grove include a multi-level parking space, Sky Walk, observation deck, and business spaces. While certain areas require upgrades, the overall improvements make it worth revisiting. A true haven for outdoor enthusiasts.
6. Check out Sonya’s Garden
Just a short drive from the city center of Tagaytay, Sonya’s Garden offers an intimate and secluded experience that’s been charming visitors since 1998. This rustic haven, bedecked with charming decorations in every corner, has a warm and inviting ambiance that welcomes guests like long-time friends.
What started as a simple garden restaurant has now transformed into a multi-dimensional venue, housing a bed-and-breakfast, spa, bakery, wedding venue, apothecary, souvenir shop, and furniture store. Every product and service, meticulously crafted, has succeeded in building a strong following and loyal customer base.
7. Palace in the Sky
Originally an unfinished mansion from 1981, the People’s Park in the Sky is now an urban park perched atop a mountain, offering a breathtaking panorama of the lush lowlands. The park, conceived to host the visiting US President Ronald Reagan, never saw its completion but has since been transformed into a view deck.
Palace in the Sky features a charming chapel, a garden, souvenir shops, and food stalls. Despite needing some upkeep and improvements, the views from People’s Park make it a worth-visiting spot in Tagaytay.
8. Fantasy World, Lemery
Unfinished yet operational, Fantasy World might not rival Disneyland, but it’s a picturesque spot that appeals to those with a taste for the whimsical or the grim. Its abandoned aesthetic has made it a favorite location for unique prenup shoots.
Though the rides no longer function, the park retains an allure, offering up an intriguing mix of charm and nostalgia that stirs a yearning for what might have been. This intriguing place is perfect for capturing memorable photos.
A rising weekend destination, Crosswinds presents a slice of Switzerland right in the heart of Tagaytay. This 100-hectare Swiss-inspired landscape, lush with 20,000 pine trees, features residential zones, eateries, specialty shops, and even staycation options.
Popular attractions include NAPA, which channels Napa Valley’s vineyard ambiance, and The Ruined Project, a uniquely designed café that became a hit despite its unplanned path. Whether for a meal at Cafe Voila or a photo-op at the Windmill, Crosswinds offers an enchanting escape.
10. La VeryOl’s Kawa Bath
Borrowing the tradition from Antique, La VeryOl Mountain View Garden offers a novel spa attraction: the Kawa Bath. Set amidst lush slopes, this family-managed spa not only provides a picturesque setting but also a unique relaxation experience.
Here, guests can enjoy a dip in large cooking vat-like baths, massages, and excellent dining options. With four veranda rooms available, one could opt for an overnight stay or simply a day tour. Remember, visits are strictly by appointment, ensuring a serene and personal retreat.
Other Things to Do Near Tagaytay
How to Get to Tagaytay from Manila
There are several ways to get to Tagaytay, but you’ll mainly get there through Manila. Here are the most common transportation options:
By Car. Tagaytay is approximately 55 kilometers (34 miles) south of Manila, and the journey by car usually takes around one to two hours, depending on traffic conditions. Take the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) from Manila and exit at Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Road. Follow the signs leading to Tagaytay City.
To reach Tagaytay from Manila, follow these directions:
- Depart from Manila and head towards the Biñan exit using the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX).
- Once at the Biñan exit, enter the CALAX Toll Booth in Biñan.
- Take the exit at the CALAX Silang Toll to proceed to the next leg of the journey.
- From there, you will reach Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Road, which will guide you directly to Tagaytay City.
Alternatively, you can opt for another route via CALAX (this route will take much longer and you’ll have to take note of coding schedules):
- Travel through Tibig Road, which will lead you to Munting Ilog.
- Continue along Pook Street until you reach Silang, Cavite.
- From Silang, navigate through towns such as J. Rizal and the Silang-Banaybanay Road via East Asuncion.
- Finally, take the Emilio Aguinaldo Highway, which will promptly bring you to Tagaytay.
By Public Bus. There are several bus companies that operate trips from Manila to Tagaytay. The most common departure points are located in Cubao, Pasay, or Alabang. Look for buses heading to Nasugbu or Balayan, as they usually pass through Tagaytay. The travel time is approximately one to two hours, depending on traffic conditions.
It’s important to note that traffic congestion can occur, especially during weekends and holidays when many people visit Tagaytay. It is advisable to plan your trip accordingly and consider traveling during off-peak hours to avoid heavy traffic.
Additionally, if you prefer a more convenient option, you can also consider hiring a private car or joining organized tours that provide transportation to Tagaytay from Manila. These services can offer more comfort and flexibility, but they may come at a higher cost.
From its awe-inspiring landscapes to its vibrant food scene, Tagaytay is a city that invites you to experience, explore, and enjoy. Its blend of natural beauty and cultural richness creates a getaway that offers something for everyone.
Whether you’re seeking a tranquil escape from the city’s hustle and bustle, an adventure-filled vacation, or a gastronomic journey, Tagaytay is a destination that will not disappoint. So pack your bags and let the charm of Tagaytay captivate your heart and satisfy your wanderlust.