Garin Farm Pilgrimage Resort in San Joaquin, Iloilo is a farm, a leisure park, and a retreat place all in one. Located an hour and a half from Iloilo City, a place where you can breathe fresh air and find peace.
This was my family’s first trip together outside of Luzon. As a start for our ILOG (Iloilo-Guimaras) Trip, we visited one of the known farms in Iloilo. You may ask why to visit a farm in the Visayas if there are a lot in Luzon? But this is not your ordinary farm. This place is also the Heaven on Earth. Interesting eh?
Exploring Garin Farm can be a challenge because you’ll have to walk a lot but it will be a walk to remember. It’s like climbing up to heaven. The resort is divided into three attractions: the farm, the leisure park, and the retreat place.
First, the farm. Like a normal farm, Garin Farm grows and raises a variety of plants and animals from chickens to goats. As you enter the resort, you’ll be surprised by the strong smell from the livestock’s waste but you’ll be astonished by the long pathway covered with vines. The pathway is surrounded by cages and garden boxes. If you’re into farming, this is the place where you can see their produce and learn how they grew them.
THE LEISURE PARK
As you go further and upward the hill, a man-made lake will surprise you of its amazing view. This is where the leisure park is. Here you can have a picnic, swim in the pool and do kayaking. This is also where the restaurant and accommodations are located.
The next part of Garin is probably the highlight of your visit to the resort. This is where you will meet God face to face… without dying. XD But before you go to heaven, you’ll have to face some challenges. You’ll have to climb a hundred step stairs under the scorching sun (If you will climb at the peak of noon). You don’t have to worry as there are stations where you can take rest. These stations are also the Stations of the Cross and statues of some of the Biblical Stories we know, like Noah’s Ark and the Great Flood.
At the top is where you can see a huge cross like the one in Mt. Samat and behind it is where heaven is. Before entering heaven, you’ll have to enter a tunnel called the Dark Meditation Tunnel. It’s like the last place/chance where you could repent for your sins to finally enter heaven and see God.
As you are reaching the end of that dark tunnel, a bright light will blind you. You have entered Heaven. Well, not exactly heaven but a representation of what we can expect after we die. A place of purity: white floor, white stairs, white wall, white statues of angels, and a white cross. All in white. A spectacular view but also blinding, literally, especially at noon. The light bounces from the white surface and it is really hard to see the surroundings. I recommend wearing sunglasses.
HEAVEN ON EARTH
This is Heaven on Earth. Angels are welcoming you as you enter the Gates of Heaven. Beyond the gate, you’ll see Seraphims gathered around, singing and worshipping God. God at the middle ever bright and powerful. This is a place where you can reflect and say your prayers.
It may not be the real heaven, but reaching this heaven was worth it. Challenging, yes, but seeing it and experiencing nature and God through this pilgrimage is an experience that you’ll be thankful for before reaching the real one. We may be sweaty and tired at the end but seeing all of this made us more excited of what Iloilo has to offer to us in the coming days.
The next post will be our adventure to Iloilo’s beautiful group of islands, Islas De Gigantes. I hope you check it out too!
- San Joaquin, Iloilo, Philippines
HOW TO GET THERE:
- From Iloilo City Proper:
- Go to Molo, Super, Mohon Terminal and take a jeepney/van bound to San Joaquin and tell the driver to drop you off to Garin Farm. (Fare: P60~ ; Travel Time: 1 Hour and 3o Minutes)
- From the highway, you can walk or ride a tricycle going to the farm. (Fare: P10-P20)
- From Iloilo City Proper:
- Water Tumbler
- Comfortable Footwear
- Entrance Fee: P150/person
- Billiards: P60/hour
- Hilltop Swimming Pool: P80
- Zipline (300 meters X 2): P250 (sitting) / P350 (superman)
- Hilltop Fishing: P30/kilo
- Hilltop Horseback Riding: P60
- Golf Cart (3 Pax ride): P60 (entrance to pavilion) / P90 (pavilion to cross)
- All-Terrain Vehicle: P200 (20 minutes)
- Single Kayak: P40
- Double Kayak: P90
- Pedal Boat: P90 for 2 pax
- Rubber Boat: P120 (4 pax) / P240 (8 pax)
- Executive Conference Room (15-20 Pax): P2,500
- Garin Farm Pilgrimage Resort
- Click here for rates and availability of Garin Farm Accommodations
- Iloilo City
- Visit the farm as early as you can to avoid the heat of the sun and huge crowds.
- Bring an umbrella or anything that will cover you from either rain or the scorching heat of the sun.
- I recommend you bring sunglasses, this will be helpful once you reach “Heaven”. The light from the sun will bounce from the white surface of the area and it will be hard to see the surroundings.
- If you are not into walking long and elevated distances, you can ride a golf cart for a fee.
- The resort also offers outdoor activities like zipline, swimming, kayaking and horseback riding.
- The resort prohibits bringing outside food and drinks. There is an available restaurant where you can taste their produce.