Nueva Ecija is one of Philippines’ hidden gems. A landlocked province in the Philippines located in the Central Luzon region. Nueva Ecija is popular with travellers not just for sightseeing in the many Nueva Ecija tourist spots but with those seeking a little adventure. Whether you want to check out Nueva Ecija food or adventure you will find it all in this part of Philippines. For foodies this gem is a treat as you can focus your trip on sampling delicacies you can only find in a Nueva Ecija province, immerse yourself in local culinary experiences, check out local cafes and find the best pasalubong (souvenir in the Philippines) to can take back home.
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- 1 Nueva Ecija Delicacies To Try
- 2 The Top 10 Tourist Spots in Nueva Ecija Province, Philippines
- 3 Nueva Ecija Hotels | Best Hotels Near Nueva Ecija
Nueva Ecija Delicacies To Try
While exploring Nueva Ecija, here are just a few of the unique dishes you can need to try out.
- Longganisa of Cabanatuan – Each province has its own version. This is a very savory variant of the well-loved sausage typically made of ground pork and spices. In Nueva Ecija the delicacy is served for breakfast but be sure to try Cabanatuan garlic longganisa.
- Pancit Malabon – A noodle dish that originated in the City of Malabon and is an array of seafood toppings served with traditionally thick rice noodles.
- Abuos (also known as ant-egg caviar) – Also known as ant-egg caviar, this Ilocano delicacy is one that is tasty, but a little bit pricey. Abuos, which looks like legumes, is often served sautéed in garlic or prepared as adobo, though some eat it raw. These are sold at public markets, and are usually displayed on leaves.
- Pinapaitang Kambing with Alibangbang Leaves – A Philippines native delicacy made from goat innards and internal organs like the intestines, liver, and heart. In Nueva Ecija, a local version involves cooking the broth in alibangbang or butterfly leaves, a souring agent similar to tamarind leaves. You can get your hands on this dish at Minalungao National Park, along with other interesting side dishes like ensaladang labanos (pickled radish salad), biya (goby) and ulang (crayfish).
The Top 10 Tourist Spots in Nueva Ecija Province, Philippines
Just a few of the Nueva Ecija tourist spots to check out, some of which you can see in the video below.
Minalungao National Park
Minalungao National Park is one of the most famous tourist spots in Nueva Ecija. It is well-known for its amazing limestone rock formations and awesome activities for the adventure seeking tourist. Visitors are often attracted to this lovely park for its relaxing bamboo rafting, but there is quite a lot of activities you can do at this park. Enjoy cliff diving, walking the hanging bridge then hiking to the Grotto, spelunking, and ziplining across the park. You can have a fun-packed day just by visiting one of the Philippine’s most loved treasures.
Minalungao National Park is a must for adventure seekers and visitors who want to have a blast on their vacation.
Nagsasa Cove is like an amazing hidden scenery surrounded by beautiful mountains. It is a lovely place to get away from the hustle of the city and enjoy a relaxing escape. You can get there by boat or by climbing Mt. Bira Bira. Some of the features or activities to enjoy while at Nagsasa Cove include frolicking in the lake and the scenic waterfalls.
If you want to spend the night or weekend, there are tents and cottages available for rent. And if you are looking for somewhere that you can truly cut off from it all, then Nagsasa Cove is it – no electricity or cell phone signal. It can get a bit crowded during weekends and on public holidays which just shows how loved the place is.
Casa San Miguel
Though it’s described as a Backstage Cafe and Bed & Breakfast, Casa San Miguel offers so much more. Casa San Miguel is a charming bed and breakfast housing an art gallery/museum, a café, and gardens of tantalizing artwork. This lovely Mexican style home is a haven for the arts in San Antonio. It is a Filipino treasure that supports local youth and talent. Tour the music and art school and see some of the talents on show. And if you’re lucky, you may even get to take in a free concert. Enjoy the wonderful dining experience and delicious food at the Backstage Café.
Another hidden treasure of Nueva Ecija is Gabaldon Falls, a 10ft high waterfalls located in Sabin Estate, Gabaldon. Getting to Gabaldon is an exciting trek of makeshift bamboo bridges and crossing a stream. When you get to the falls, you will be amazed by the beauty of the surrounding rock formation and the green foliage. You can then appreciate the beauty of this lovely falls and take a dip in the ice-cool water that makes trekking through the sun all the more worth it. Plus, the natives claim that the water has therapeutic properties, so enjoy.
PMP Paradise Farm
If you’re looking for an eco-friendlier tourist spot in Nueva Ecija, then check out the PMP Paradise Farm. As a sprawling 250-hectare farm, this farm tourist destination offers numerous activities for the nature-loving tourist. Try your hand at fishing. Enjoy horseback riding. See if you have a knack for sheepherding. Test out your culinary skills by making palitaw, a popular Filipino snack. Then top it all off be enjoying a delicious meal of all local favourite dishes.
The PMP Paradise Farm is also close to the Minalongao National Park. So, if you are staying in the area, there are plenty of fun and fabulous top tourist spots to enjoy.
If you want the full experience of a luxuriating hot springs, then you must visit Burburayok Spring. Burburayok Spring is a natural hot spring located at the foot of Mt. Amorong on the border of Nueva Ecija. Said to have medicinal properties, this hot spring is a favourite tourist hot spot. The warm waters are considered therapeutic by all who visit. So, relax and enjoy a warm and restorative experience at the Burburayok Spring.
Another popular tourist destination is the picturesque Capones Island. This is one of the perfect islands to visit if you’re island hopping or trekking. This island offers a captivating view once you make the climb up the mountain. And its clear waters and white sand beach is just perfect for a good swim. One of the sites that is a must visit is the Capones Light House. Plus, there are plenty of other activities to enjoy on the island, including snorkelling at the beautiful clear beach. There is no mobile signal or electricity so just have fun with nature and your friends on this beautiful little island.
Araquio Festival in Penaranda
If you’re visiting Nueva Ecija in May, then you cannot miss the Araquio Festival in Penaranda. This festival dates back to the Spanish colonial period and is a dramatization of the spread of Christianity. This weeklong festival takes place during the Feast of the Cross. It starts with a Christian Eucharistic Mass and ends with an elaborate celebration culminating in the Flores de Mayo. It is a beautiful sight with bright colours, elaborate costumes, and engaging presentations. Throughout the week you get a variety of songs, acts, and dances complemented by a brass band.
For the thrill seekers, traversing Dalton Pass ranks right up there as one of the most exiting experiences in Nueva Ecija. Dalton Pass, also known as Balete Pass, is a zigzag road high in the mountains straddling Nueva Ecija and Nueva Vizcaya. This rugged terrain is a historical and scenic attraction with a bloodied history as a major fight location in the final stages of World War II. The view from the top is just spectacular as it towers over the surrounding areas. And for those thrill seekers, the winding road passes quite a few cliff edges.
Pantabangan Dam (Also known as Pantabangan Lake)
The town of Pantabangan by itself offers a rich history and culture to enjoy. It is one of the loveliest eco-tourist destinations in the province of Nueva Ecija. But, if you want a tranquil outdoor area to enjoy with friends or family, then take a trip to Pantabangan Lake, another lovely open-air attraction.
The dam is a practical resource for the town of Pantabangan as it is a source of hydroelectric power as well as irrigation for farmlands. But, it also offers something unique in the spectacular and tranquil site it offers. Witness the breathtaking beauty of sunrise on the lake unlike any other. The lake offers a serene landscape and is a popular place to swim for locals (and tourists). You can enjoy a tour around the lake by boat and a bit of sportfishing in the lake.
Nueva Ecija Hotels | Best Hotels Near Nueva Ecija
There aren’t a lot of hotels in the Nueva Ecija these are just some of the closest.
The Harvest Hotel Managed by HII offers accommodations in Cabanatuan which is located within the Nueva Ecija Provinces. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant, free private parking on site. All hotel rooms feature air conditioning and a flat-screen TV, free find slippers, toiletries and a hairdryer. There is a gift shop at the property. The hotel also provides car rental.
Located in Cabanatuan in the province of Nueva Ecija, Microtel Cabanatuan offers rooms with cable TV and private bathrooms. There is also an outdoor pool, restaurant and free parking. All rooms offer views of nearby rice fields and have a radio clock and telephone. Wi-Fi is available for a fee. International cuisine is served at the Liquid Coffee Bar & Restaurant. Free coffee is available in the hotel lobby. Microtel Cabanatuan is located about a 3 hour drive from Metro Manila. The Cabanatuan bus station is a few minutes from the hotel.
Located in Cabanatuan, La Parilla Hotel features a restaurant and free WiFi throughout the property. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant, free private parking on site. Each room at this hotel is air-conditioned and is fitted with a TV. All rooms are equipped with a private bathroom equipped with a bidet and shower. You will also find slippers and free toiletries. You will find a 24-hour front desk at the property. The hotel also provides car rental.
Top Star Hotel offers accommodations in Cabanatuan. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant. Free private parking is available on site. The rooms are equipped with a flat-screen TV. Certain rooms have a seating area to relax in after a busy day. You will find an electric kettle in the room. Every room comes with a private bathroom fitted with a bidet. You will also find slippers and free toiletries.
So, have you been to Nueva Ecija before?
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