Having an active and fun-loving father is a great blessing to the family especially for the getaways spent when the opportunity presents itself. Father’s Day is an outdoor escape which is more-than-the-usual road trip with the man who drives the family in more ways than one.
With the virtual bursting of the NCR Plus Bubble, there are more options for day tripping sans the so-called “bubble gang” at boundary checkpoints to interrogate you. Below are some unique themes for a consummate Dad’s Day driving destination.
An indispensable element of every celebration in the Filipino family, we hit the road in the hunt for new restaurants for out-of-town bonding moments which have become precious and few in this era unending quarantines.
Tagaytay ridge is a top-of-mind for the food trip because of the wide array of choices from Nuvali in Sta. Rosa to Nasugbu. With the opening of the Calamba-Laguna Expressway (CALAX), Kaykulot Bridge, and the East-West Bypass Road in upland Cavite, traffic has become a more delightful journey which zips you from the usual bottleneck.
A must-try is the newly-opened Farmer’s Table (show in main photo) which offers a feast beyond the typical fare of bulalo and tawilis. The latest creation of Raintree Hospitality Group, it is the al fresco resto which specializes in local organic farm produce much like its host resort, Nurture Wellness Village.
Dads can choose from hothouse cauliflower & broccoli served Buffalo-style, Mr. Jones Tapa, stone-fired pizza, Caesar salad, plant-based burger, and other vegan-friendly options.
The resto has two other sections for take-aways—the Boutique Market for local delicacies, Nurture signature products, and weekend pop-up farm produce, and Artisanal Baker for breads, pastries, native coffee and juices.
If the greeneries seem so enticing, yield to temptation to linger longer and treat Dad to a massage, spa treatment or even spend the night at the ethnic-themed cottages. Guests can enjoy peace of mind while savoring the bonding moments because of the open spaces and strict health protocols observed by both Farmer’s Table and Nurture Village.
The pandemic brought out the so-called “green thumb” to every Pinoy during the house arrest period, and many adults with moolah to spare have mutated into a plantito or plantita. This crisis has caused a shift on the travel patterns of fathers from the usual glitzy hotels into farm or garden resorts.
One such hideaway is Tibby’s Farm, which brands itself as an EAT (Education, Accommodation, and Tourism) facility which promotes community-based sustainable agriculture. Tucked inside Sunset Valley Homes in Angeles City, Pampanga, it is a vegetable farm and training center run by gentleman farmer Angelo Valencia who founded the Community Sustainability Ventures social enterprise.
Families can immerse in farm chores, relish locally-grown vegetables poultry, and aquaculture dishes, and admire the curio items, vintage cars, and intimate bric-a-brac houses and Cordillera huts built for “farmcation”.
Urbanites won’t miss their café way of life with 1798 Lifestyle Studio of Chef Cente Edralin for after-meal cravings of an assortment coffee, desserts, pastries, and short orders. It can also curate workshops on baking, cooking, and pasta making for Dads who want to be a chef for a day.
The tourism mantra “It’s more fun in the Philippines” is an undisputable claim, with the infinite activities we can lay our hands on. Sometimes, the difficulty lies in choosing the fun activity that both father and child could enjoy.
An unorthodox recreation is firing to initiate youngsters on the responsible use of firearms for sports and self-defense. Situated near Angeles City’s commercial district is Mountain Clark Firing Range just a few minutes away from the North Luzon Expressway, it is a spacious outdoor yard which boasts of an assortment of modern guns from caliber 22 handguns to military-grade pistols and rifles.
One of the biggest ranges north of Metro Manila, it has seven physically-distanced covered firing bays, each capable of accommodating three shooters at a time. MCFR’s amiable team of male and lady instructors will warm you up with a disarming tete-a-tete, until you get a more relaxed feeling of holding a gun for the first time.
Having trained police, security agencies, government personnel, and private individuals, you can be assured of top-rate lessons on the fundamentals of practical and tactical shooting.
With father and child firing together, this is also a unique bonding opportunity, a new-found definition of fun, and words of wisdom on the proper mindset on gun use from the dad, no less.
If you want a tamer version of fun, you can settle for archery at their soon-to-reopen indoor range and aspire of being the next Cupid or Robin Hood.
A true-blue day tripper since age 19, he has travelled across the archipelago by land, air, and sea. As a communications trainer, travel photojournalist, tourist mapmaker, scuba diver, environment advocate, or simply a family road tripper, he has imbibed the diversity of the Philippines by learning the basic way of life of the places he visits.