Big-ot Falls: The Mini-canyoneering Experience in Hilongos, Leyte (With Travel Guide)

I never exactly thought that there exists such a beautiful spot near my home.

Big-ot Falls is located in Brgy. San Isidro, Hilongos, Leyte. It has become popular to the Hilongosnons earlier this year when the incumbent Mayor, Hon. Albert Villahermosa, visited the place. When the visit was shared online, Big-ot Falls has become the talk of the town.

Big-ot Falls is not yet popular to people outside of Hilongos. I am also thinking of keeping it away from the outside world to preserve it, but it is too difficult not to blog about its pristine beauty. It really was captivating. ❤

Last April 2017, my friends and I decided to venture Brgy. San Isidro and personally witness what everybody is talking about. We decided to go through Brgy. Hampangan instead of directly going to Brgy. San Isidro the journey is shorter there. Also, it is usually the jump-off point for Big-ot Falls. For everyone’s information, Brgy. Hampangan, just like its neighbors, is a mountain barangay. So, be prepared to have some inconvenience along the way.

If you are looking for an adventure, the path to Big-ot Falls is ready to give you one!

Big-ot Falls is nowhere near the barangay proper. It is in fact located near the next barangay. To reach the falls, you must trek on top of hills and inside some forests.

Walking on top of the hills will give you such breathtaking views.

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(c) PETERCONSUL PHOTOGRAPHY

At least you will have something to revel about while walking for probably 30 minutes or more.

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(c) PETERCONSUL PHOTOGRAPHY

If you think that walking on top of hills and inside some forests is the end of your journey, you are wrong. You will have the fight of your life while clinging on plants as you try to walk those wet sticky steep downhill slopes before you reach Big-ot Falls.

The area is not yet developed by the government because it has just been discovered earlier this year. With that, the paths are not yet ready for tourists. I have to thank the locals for being so kind. They were the ones who cleared the path for people to pass.

I’ll be honest with you, I lost a lot of calories walking these steps.

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That’s challenging, right? One tip, please do not wear those expensive shoes there. *laughs I, in fact, walked barefoot there. I was too afraid to wear my slippers while challenging those steps.

Once you get down those tricky slopes, you will then have your first glance of Big-ot Falls and this sign will greet you.

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(c) PETERCONSUL PHOTOGRAPHY

You should agree with me, both the sign and the steps are too cute to ignore. Such humble efforts to make the place presentable. Thumbs up to the local government and the locals near the area.

After all the bumps and falls, hallelujah to Big-ot Falls!

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(c) PETERCONSUL PHOTOGRAPHY

I have to be honest. When I first glanced at it, I really thought that I wasted my 45 minutes to 1 hour walk, because I thought that was it. I thought that that small pond-like area was everything! But I was wrong. Thank the heavens! This pond-like area is just Level 1 of the falls.

If you think those waters are shallow, you are wrong! They are probably 6 to 7 feet. I got the most of those waters by jumping on them countless times! *laughs

The mini-canyoneering Experience

If you see in the picture above a narrow opening at the end of the pond-like area, that is the door to God’s awesome creation!

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(c) PETERCONSUL PHOTOGRAPHY

You can swim your way in or you can venture on those steep sharp rocks at both sides. I suggest that you just swim your way in because those rocks are very sharp. One fall and you might hit your head. It is very dangerous! As for me, I went for the rocks and I regretted it. *laughs

That picture above is the path leading to Level 2 of the falls. And the picture below is Level 2 of the Falls!

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Sorry about the photo quality but yes, this is Big-ot Falls’ 2nd level.

If you will someday visit this falls, make sure you jump on the waters. The rocks are high and jumping on the waters will get on your nerves!

Unfortunately, I do not have a photo of Big-ot Falls’ Level 3 but trust to know that the Level 3 is far more challenging and mesmerizing than the 2nd level. *thumbs up

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(c) PETERCONSUL PHOTOGRAPHY

This last photo was taken from the 3rd level of Big-ot Falls. Such a sight, isn’t it? Honestly, it was not easy to go up there but it was worth it! ❤

The water was very cold since it came from the mountains. The water may not be clear but it’s swim in. It is also very deep.

And yes, that was Big-ot Falls. It did not only mesmerized me by its beauty but it also left be hungry. *laughs Conquering those rocks took all of my strength! Unfortunately for us, we didn’t bring any food. The adventure left us all starving. *laughs

Getting to know Big-ot Falls was such a privilege. I am also more than proud for having this pristine beauty in Hilongos. ❤

The Travel Guide

This section will always be present in my blogs because this is me inviting you to go there. *winks

How to go there?

A. From those outside Hilongos
After reaching Hilongos by following these two options below, follow next transpo instruction at section B.

  • By Boat, the following shipping lines are available:
    Gabisan Shipping Lines (Ticket price: Php 200 ~ Php 300)
    Roble Shipping Lines (Ticket price: Php 200 ~ Php 400)
  • By Bus, fare ranges from Php 30 ~ Php 200 depending on where you are from.

B. From those in Hilongos

  • By Personal transpo: follow the national road from Brgy. Liberty to Brgy. Concepcion. Then ask locals where to turn if you want to go to Brgy. Hampangan (which is the usual jump-off point for Big-ot Falls).
  • By Side Car or Habal2x: Go to the Hilongos Market and look for Side Car or Habal2x drivers for Brgy. Hampangan (which is the usual jump-off point for Big-ot Falls). They will take you directly to the barangay proper.

C. If you are already at Brgy. Hampangan (which is the usual jump-off point for Big-ot Falls), request or ask locals to guide you. There will probably be locals that will be willing enough to guide if you will give them tips. *winks I also know some people from my home barangay who will be willing to drive and guide you. Just shoot me an email and I’ll get them. *smiles

Some Helpful Tips

  1. Bring food.
    The journey and the swimming will cost you a lot of calories. If you don’t wanna starve, pack a lot of food for everyone.
  2. Bring waterproof cameras.
  3. Bring extra clothes.
    It is gonna be bad for your health if you trek for an hour then you will not dry up your sweat before swimming. Same goes with not drying up yourself before starting your travel back to your homes.
  4. Don’t wear your expensive shoes during the trek.
    Sneakers and doll shoes are not welcome as well. Please don’t.
    I recommend that you trek barefoot. But if you really want to wear your shoes, well of course you can but it’s not going to look good after all the mud stuck up to it.
  5. Bring your rash guards with you.
  6. Overnight? I’m not sure. Nobody tried to do that there. Perhaps you can be the first.
  7. Travel early.
    It is going to be a long walk to and fro. Moreover, you would want to stay long in the place. So, travel early.
  8. Travel light.
    Don’t try to bring 1 case of beer there. You won’t survive the journey. *laughs

And that was all.

Big-ot Falls is gift to the Hilongosnons. I do hope the people of Hilongos will take good care of it. Such beauty should stay pristine forever.

Thank you all for reading!

Shout-out and thanks to my friend, Peter, for his amazing photos! *thumbs up

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Shout-out to my pack for making me go with them. I am so thankful to you guys for letting me see this beautiful spot. ❤

What about you? Can you still resist to visit?

D.M.P.

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