Tired of looking at tall buildings and starless skies? Need a place to revisit and fully embrace Mother Nature? Then I just know the place for you.
One warm Sunday, I took a two-hour ride from the city of Iloilo to San Joaquin, which is the last town in the south of the province. For commuters, you can ride a San Joaquin Jeepney at the Iloilo “Super” Market in the city proper or from Mohon Terminal, whichever is nearer to you. Ask the driver to drop you off the parking area for tricycles going to Garin Farm. The tricycle fare is usually Php10.00 per person unless you will rent it.
For private transportation, from the city it is a 53.5km drive taking the Iloilo-Antique National Road. It will take you about 1 and half hour. There will be signage and billboards of directions along the highway going to Garin Farm to lead you.
What awaits you at Garin Farm
The entrance fee is Php150.00 per person. Just a heads up, and probably you will see the sign yourself when you get there, but as you enter the gates of Garin Farm, you will be welcomed by the chickens and ducks and their not so good odour. You have been warned. If you cannot take it, try to smile, the biggest smile possible. Smiling suppresses gag reflex which will make you less nauseous.
After a 10-15 minute walk along the pathway with different farm animals, you will be rewarded with the magnificent view of a 5000 sq metre, beautifully designed, soothing to the eyes man made lagoon. On an elevated area, just above the lagoon, is Garin Farm’s swimming pool. There are cave-like cottages near the pool where you can leave your things.
If you plan to stay overnight, they have meticulously designed and landscaped glass-walled rooms with an astounding view of the ocean or the mountains – A spot where you can really feel that you are one with nature.
There are tons of activities that you can do in this 14 hectare inland resort. For water activities, you can go kayaking or boat paddling with a partner in the lagoon. You can swim in their swimming pool with a man made falls. If you are up for a more challenging activity, you can try the 300 metre zipline across the lagoon. And if you want serenity and to reflect, you can climb 456 steps going up to the Divine Mercy Cross. I swear, it is going to be worth it. Not to mention the calories you will be losing along the way, the top most part promises another breathtaking view of the entire resort, the mountains at the back, and even the bell tower of San Joaquin’s Church from afar. On your way up, there are different life size statues of the different biblical scenes such as The Last Supper, The Agony in the Garden, The Crucifixion and Ascension of Jesus and a lot more.
After the never ending tour, you can take a break in their canteen and have some refreshments. There are a lot of foods to choose from, but for dessert, you should not miss their own Garin Farm ice cream made from carabao’s milk. It comes in other flavours too.
Garin Farm is a unique yet enchanting blend of leisure, spirituality, agriculture, and nature – giving you and your family or friends a vacation you will not forget.
For inquiries, you can contact them through:
Telephone Number: +63 033 314 75 55
Mobile Number: +63 916 667 6851
Check out the Inland Resort Amenities and their Rates:
Entrance Fee: Php 150 per person
- Excluding children below 1 year old
- Senior Citizen discount is applicable to cardholders only
- Strictly no outside food and drinks allowed
Hilltop Swimming Pool – Php 80.00
Hilltop Fishing: Php 30.00/kilo
Billiards: Php 60.00/hour
Hilltop Horseback Riding: Php 60.00
Zipline (300 meters X 2)
- Sitting: Php 250.00
- Superman: Php 350.00
Golf Cart (3 Pax ride)
- Entrance to Pavilion: Php 60.00
- Pavilion to Cross: Php 90.00
Executive Conference Room (15-20 Pax): Php 2,500
- Single Kayak: Php 40.00
- Double Kayak: Php 90.00
- Pedal Boat: Php 90.00 for 2 pax
- Rubber Boat: Php 120.00 for 4 pax; Php 240 for 8 pax
All-Terrain Vehicle (20 minutes): Php 200.00
- WiFi Access
- Laundry Service
- 24-Hour Security
- 24-Hour Electricity
Hilltop Family Room: Php 3,500.00
Hilltop Twin Room: Php 2,500.00
Hilltop Single Room: Php 1,500.00
- Fully Air-conditioned
- Extra Bed: Php 350 with breakfast; Php 200 without breakfast
- Available for Family & Twin Rooms only and limited to 2 extra beds.
- Check-in guests have complementary breakfast and free use of the hill top pool.
Tips in Visiting Garin Farm:
– Bring umbrellas or wide-brimmed hats, and wear sunblock to protect your skin from the rays of the sun, (especially if you visit at lunch time)
– Drink a lot of water before of while climbing the stairs going to the cross.
– Do not be in a hurry. Enjoy every moment, every spot of the farm. This is a vacation not a race.
– Stay safe.
If you want to witness Ilonggo Heritage, visit their Church, just a 5 minute drive from Garin Farm, and the Camposanto which is part of their cemetery.