Experience the sight & sound of Brgy. Sampaloc

For anyone dreaming of a laid-back and secured place without letting go of the comforts of social and technological advancements, the option is laid out in the 8,899 hectare-wide sprawling land of Barangay Sampaloc in Tanay, Rizal.

Named after a tropical fruit, Brgy. Sampaloc -- the biggest rural barangay in Tanay -- is home to Tanay's invigorating resorts and camp sites, flourishing fruit farms, healthy native products, as well as a strong military camp and excellent educational and social institutions. It takes a keen observer to experience the charming picture-perfect sights, the soothing and bustling sound, and the sweet and sharp smell of the barangay. Focus and be ready to see, hear and smell Sampaloc.

Activities and Accommodation

Ask a local about their barangay and you would surely hear about the presence of many soldiers in the place. This may be because of Camp General Mateo Capinpin or simply known as Camp Capinpin , a military training center that is the headquarters of the 2 nd infantry division of the Philippine Army. Many schools and organizations hold outbound education, field trip, and team building here. Moreover, its Tent City has been open to youth activities such as scouts’ camping and Reserved Officers Training Course (ROTC) exercises.

Many adventurers seek Tanay for its accessible and awe-inspiring resorts that offer not just apt accommodation, breathtaking views, and serene atmosphere but fun outdoor and indoor activities as well.

In The Sierra Madre Country Club, located at Km. 58 along Marcos Highway , camping is a favored activity because of the cool weather and the picturesque view of the mountain ranges. Aside from the camp site, there is also a golf course, a jungle area that is perfect for war gaming, a firing range, an obstacle course, a children's playground, a spring valley natural pool, and a waterfall. For those who would like to tour the place, horseback riding is also offered. Meanwhile, to those who are looking for a quiet place for spiritual refreshment, The Sierra Madre features meditation and prayer mountain, ecumenical worship chapel, and way of the cross. For those who would prefer the indoors, there is always the billiard hall and the video and music room. Since The Sierra Madre overlooks the rolling hills, sight-seeing is made conducive and even romantic by the viewing and lookout decks, the different view points throughout the resort as well as the hanging bridge and the gazebo. The Sierra Madre Country Club can be reached through their landline numbers 9132001 and 9113579 as well as through their mobile number 09198674985.

Near The Sierra Madre in Brgy. Sampaloc is another liberating resort that also opens up itself to many team building activities. This is Pranjetto Hills in Sitio Magsaysay. Aside from a spacious conference hall that accommodates different events and occasions, Pranjetto Hills also offers rooms with verandas that face the sparkling waters of Laguna de Bay! It also has crystal blue swimming pool and lush greeneries. Pranjetto Hills in Sitio Mayagay can be reached through the landline numbers 4015995, 4013738, 6971785 and 6305686; telefax number 6951332; and mobile number 09205367649.

Aside from the two, there is another resort that is not much heard about. But since it is owned by a former Philippine president, it is noteworthy to be considered. The JE Youth Camp is a resort and farm that houses animals such as ostrich, mini duck, horse, bird, and pig. Aside from enjoying these animals, visitors, by group, may also go on a tour of the place, check out the mini museum and archive, and watch a documentary of the former president. Tour is affordable at only 100 pesos (less than 3 US dollars) per person while swimming is priced at 150 pesos for adults and 100 pesos for kids. The 24-hectare camp is located just a few meters away from Camp Capinpin .

Aside from the abovementioned resorts, a recently opened hotel is now offering locals and tourists affordable yet relaxing room rates as well as restaurant and computer shop services. Sampaloc Inn, a 2-storey hotel along Marcos Highway and very near Gate 1 of Camp Capinpin, just opened in February of 2010. It offers economy motel rooms at the basement and de luxe hotel rooms on the second floor. The hotel can be reached through mobile number 09393546945.

Educational and Social Services

Leadership workshops, sports festivals, trainings and seminars and the like are favorite activities in Sampaloc. The barangay is home to the International Cultural and Educational Foundation (ICEF) Youth Training Center which can be found in Sitio Mayagay II. ICEF was founded with the goal of addressing poverty through worldwide participation of all sectors of society.

There is also the National Training School for Boys (NTSB), also known as Boys' town, which helps youth offenders to be treated and trained in preparation for re-integration and adjustment in their family and community.

Brgy. Sampaloc is also proud to be the home of University of Rizal System ’s main campus. The vision of the university is to be a premier technology-driven higher education by the year 2015. It has eight other campuses scattered throughout the province of Rizal .

Pleasurable Eats and Pasalubong

One won't get hungry in Sampaloc as there are many turu-turo, carinderia, food stands and restaurants around. One restaurant is the Barandilla Restaurant and Catering Services near the Shell Gas station along Marcos Highway . There are value meals that range from 60 pesos to 120 pesos. There is also a wide choice of dishes of vegetables, chicken, pork, beef, fish, soup, noodles as well as snacks like sandwiches. It also offers the popular silog ("sinangag" na kanin or fried rice and "itlog" or egg) meals. The bestsellers of the restaurant are the T-bone steak meal, Bulalo and Crispy Pata. Thirst quenchers and hard drinks are also sold here. For dance party lovers, the restaurant offers disco on Saturdays. It is open daily from eight in the morning until 12 midnight .

The barangay is also known for its many mango and root crop farms. One can buy the sweet fruit even from stalls along the road and bring them home as pasalubong. Instant salabat (ginger powder) and peanut butter may also be bought here. They are almost readily available in the many stores in the barangay.

Getting There and Around

If you are familiar with the place or if you have a guide and you just want to drive around, bring a car and have a stress-busting road trip in Tanay. Just in case you run out of gas, there are Shell and Flying V stations that are easily located.

If you do not have a car or simply prefer the public transportation, going to, from and around the barangay is easy. Tricycle is the common mode of transportation. Within the barangay, the fare is 10 pesos while around Tanay, it is 25 pesos. Jeepneys are also used to get to and from the different barangays.

It is quite funny that the barangay is named after a fruit, a sour one at that. However, if you examine the place closely – mustering all your energy and sharpening your senses to take in all of Sampaloc – you will notice that the strong and pungent characteristic of the fruit is a reflection of the barangay. The sight, sound, and smell of nature and the strong foundations of the community are worth a trip and a stay. Come and have a taste of Brgy. Sampaloc.

Gina Idea
About the author:

Gina Idea is working as a technical writer though she also has a flare for the creative side. She maintains a travelog and a personal site where she shares her thoughts. Aside from writing, she does hosting on the side too. Among the events that she has hosted, Kids Church service every Sunday is her favorite. She loves encouraging kids and leading them in praise and worship as they gather in the grounds of the College of Music in UP Diliman.

Gina took up Broadcast Communication in college. One of her notable experiences is being a student DJ in several radio stations. Her past work experiences include Events Researcher for a top TV network and Sales and Marketing Coordinator for a radio company. Gina is from Lucena but is currently residing in Quezon City.

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