Touring Villa Escudero with Kids

February 25, 2010

Touring Villa Escudero with Kids

We went to Villa Escudero last February 2010. I was with my husband, four kids, my father-in-law, and my sister-in-law who arrived from the States. It was more than 10 years ago since I last went there. I wasn't sure my kids would like the place. It's a coconut plantation in the province so I thought they will find it boring. But I still asked them to come, and they all agreed. I suppose, more than anything else, they wanted to spend more time with their aunt, who last visited 10 years ago. It was their aunt's last weekend in the Philippines.

My kids enjoyed the trip. So I made a list of what your kids may also enjoy during the trip.

Unique Experiences That Kids Will Enjoy

Museum tour

  1. The museum is the only place where you can see what clothes the Presidents of the Philippines wore when they took their oath of office. When the kids see their clothes, they will be able to imagine the actual height and build of all the Presidents of the Philippines. It will be the nearest experience they will have of seeing them in person. Also included are the clothes worn by the spouses of the Presidents.
  2. The original copy of Rizal's letter to his sister is exhibited there. The kids will see how disciplined Rizal was because his handwriting was so neat even when writing informally to his sister.
  3. Boys would have fun seeing a shrunken human skull among the collection. 
  4. The most unique thing we saw was a picture of Jesus created using all the text of the Bible. We used the magnifying glass attached beside the picture frame to read the Bible text.
There are so many interesting things exhibited in the museum, like the large carozas the Escudero family still use during Holy Week procession, the extinct animals collected by the family that was carefully preserved, and so many others. I listed only what my kids raved about and found fascinating.

Photos are not allowed inside the Museum so we are limited only to taking a picture of the facade of the Museum.

When planning your trip also take note that only children above 7 years old are allowed inside the museum.

Carabao cart ride 

This is a unique experience for kids brought up in the city.  Most city kids have never seen a carabao up close. They will discover how different it is to ride a very slow carabao cart, in contrast to what they are used to, which is riding fast cars. By riding the carabao cart, they will experience how it's like to travel in the old days, when the carabao cart is the only means of transportation of families living in the rural areas.

Lunch at the Waterfalls Restaurant

The novelty of dining in the Waterfalls Restaurant is dining in tables situated near the man-made waterfalls, while your feet wades in shin-deep waters. It is actually very refreshing to do this, especially on a hot day. Kids can change into swimsuits and take a dip near the waterfalls after lunch, while the parents continue dining and enjoying conversation with relatives. 

For those who do not want to wade in water and have their feet wet while dining, a dry area with tables are available near the entrance of the Waterfalls Restaurant. They can sit there and waitresses are assigned to get food for them from the buffet table near the waterfalls.
Cultural Show

The cultural show lasts from 2:00 - 3:15pm. After lunch at 1:00 pm, you can walk to the cultural show area and be there by 1:30pm. It's best to be there around 1:30 pm to avail of good seats. The venue for the cultural show is also a restaurant that serves snacks. You can order ice cream, halo-halo and coffee.

At 1:30 pm, the pre-show starts. This show features a rondalla group playing old Filipino songs.

The cultural show is worth seeing because it's very well crafted. We were surprised to find out that the performers in the show are all resort employees. They perform like professional dancers. The show itself was created by the National Artist Ramon Obusan. It features all dances from the different regions in the Philippines. The dances that I really enjoyed watching are the ones that originated from Mindanao. The costumes were very colorful and had beautiful golden details.The dances from Mindanao were full of passion.

River Rafting

After watching the show, the kids went river rafting. Kids would enjoy the experience of navigating the bamboo rafts. Despite its simplicity, these bamboo rafts are hard to navigate. The challenge of returning to the place where you rode the bamboo rafts is what they enjoyed about it. They were provided with life vests to keep them safe.


We arrived 9 am at the resort. My kids didn't have the time to swim at the pool. If your kids want to swim in the pool, it may be necessary to give up the museum tour, river rafting or the cultural show. Or you may opt to stay overnight. The itinerary we followed, shown below, can be your guide in pacing your day.

Day Tour Packages:
  • Mondays to Thursday
  • Adults : P1,105 Half rate : P550 (Children below 4 feet)
  • Fridays to Sundays and Holidays
  • Adults : P1,250 Half rate : P625 (Children below 4 feet)
The rate is inclusive of:
  •  welcome drinks
  • carabao cart rides
  • use of outdoor recreational facilities (swimming pool, rafting)
  • buffet Filipino lunch at the manmade waterfalls
  • museum entrance
  • cultural show ONLY on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays.

How to book:
1. Contact Villa Escudero to reserve slots in three (3) ways:
        a. fill up the online reservation form at; or
        b. email them at; or
        c. call them landline at:
                  (632) 521-0830
                  (632) 523-0392
                  (632) 523-2944.

2. Two (2) days before the date of your tour, confirm your booking by depositing a minimal amount to their bank account with BPI, BDO or Metrobank. You can also pay at their Manila office at 1059 Estrada Street, Malate, Manila

3. If you paid the thru the bank, you must email them a copy of the deposit slip to show evidence of payment and to confirm the booking.

Other helpful notes:
a. The amount deposited to confirm the booking is refundable IN FULL in case you do not arrive on the date of your reservation. After your refund is processed, you have to pick up the check representing the amount refunded at their Manila office.

b. They accept walk-in tourists for the day tour, but the meals of the walk-in tourists can only be taken at 1pm. The guests with reservation are given priority.

c. Children 4 feet and below are half-price. There is a child statue at the reception area(as shown below) where they measure the children. If they exceed the height of the statue, they pay the adult price.

My daughter in the picture is actually 4 feet 3 inches. Despite exceeding the 4 feet requirement to get the half-price discount, she was still charged only half-price because she was within the height range of the child statue at reception. The resort gives an additional allowance in height to avoid complaints.  

d. If you have a driver, you need not pay the day tour adult rate for him. You can buy a food stub at reception worth 100 pesos for his lunch. And he's allowed to stay at the reception area the whole day instead of entering the resort grounds. The reception area is cool and comfortable to stay in.

What to bring:
  • swimsuit (if you want to swim in the swimming pool; you cannot swim in the pool without proper attire)
  •  sunblock (very useful during rafting)
  •  towel
  •  slippers (for use during the lunch at the waterfalls and river rafting)
  •  cap (for walking around the resort, or going from the meal area to the show are)
  • drinks (especially water) and snacks (to be consumed during the road trip; it's not allowed to be brought into the resort) 
  • first aid medicines (for headache, fever, dizziness, indigestion) 
  • hand sanitizer 
  • tissue/toilet paper/wet ones 
  • camera (digicam or videocam), extra batteries 
  • bank deposit slip (as proof of confirmed reservation and downpayment)
How to get there:

1. Go to the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX). Turn right at Exit 50, Calamba exit, which is the last exit of the SLEX.

2. You enter the Star Tollway. Turn left at Exit 60 of the Star Tollway, that goes towards Sto. Tomas, Batangas.

3. Drive south and pass by the towns of Alaminos and San Pablo until you reach the Quezon Arch, which marks the boundary between Laguna and Quezon.

4. After passing the Quezon Arch, the entrance to Villa Escudero is immediately to your left. It is marked by a sign "Villa Escudero 1 km".

5. Turn left and proceed to the parking lot.

Travel time:
  • from Cubao to Villa Escudero on a Sunday: 2 hours
  • from Villa Escudero to Cubao, departing at 430 pm on a Sunday: 2 1/2  hours (the delay is caused by a fiesta procession at Sto. Tomas, Batangas when we went there on the 3rd week of February)

Day Tour Itinerary:
Day tour hours is from 8am-5pm, which means the resort is open to day tourists from 8am-5pm only.

     Travel time from Cubao to Villa Escudero
     Welcome drinks at reception
     Registration and payment of day tour
     Walk to the Museum
     Photo at the entrance of the museum
     Tour the Museum
     Carabao ride to enter the resort
     Buffet Lunch at the manmade waterfalls
     Stroll around the resort going towards the Rafting area, swimming area, and the cultural show area
     Rondalla serenade at the cultural show area
     Cultural show
     River rafting
     Carabao ride out of the resort
     Leave the resort
     Arrive in Manila

If you don't have time to make a stop along the way to Manila, I recommend you buy the espasol from the woman near the parking lot  of Villa Escudero. They are light and soft, which I liked very much.

Total cost of the trip:
Approximately 12,000 php for 7 adults, 1 child, 1 driver, and using you own vehicle getting there.
To compute for your own trip, download this interactive excel file: villa escudero day tour total cost


Anonymous said...

Direction number 2 is incorrect. Do not go on the Star tollway. Let me assure you that there is no exit 60 on star. This detour cost us an extra hour.

Meanne said...

Hi. Thanks for letting me know about your experience. It reminds me to update this post. As I've shown above, this post was dated February 2010. At the time I made this article, the road connecting the SLEX and Star tollway was still under construction. Therefore, we took the longer route to Tiaong, Quezon through Calamba (turbina) exit which is exit 50 to get to the Sto Tomas exit, which is exit 60. Exit 60 is the 1st exit of the Star tollway. Since the construction is done, you can now go directly to the Sto Tomas exit (the exit after the Calamba exit) using the SLEX and avoid the longer and roundabout route using the Calamba exit.

Terry said...

Carriage photo side photo is pretty.