Having our fill of the decorated houses in Lucban for an afternoon, we head to Majayjay, a town around a 15-minute jeepney ride northwest of Lucban, and just within the border of Laguna. We’re particularly headed to Taytay Falls at the foothills of Mount Banahaw. The site itself is located three kilometers from the main road, passing through forested areas. But this afternoon, the narrow roads are heaving with cars, vans, tricycles and even people on foot as the whole world seems to have converged in this otherwise quiet place.

Reaching the falls from the main entrance involves going down the stone steps leading to a kilometer-long trail. But the scorching heat that defined the early afternoon has quickly been replaced by a sudden burst of rain showers, something for which we didn’t prepare. And so there we are, with our bags and the other sets of clothes drenched. It’s a miracle my camera is still dry.

The falls itself is impressive, cascading from the mountain through lush greens. The place, though, is too popular a side trip for Pahiyas visitors and this means today is a very busy weekend. Tents have run out for overnight visitors, and there are trash everywhere – there’s even a used diaper lodged between boulders.

Since we’re already soaked, we put our bags down under a large tree and join the crowds, enjoying the cold waters – never mind the problem of what we’re going to wear going back to Lucban in the evening.

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