Mt. Arayat and Abe’s Farm

Since I was a child, whenever we drive up to the north of Luzon in the Philippines, Mt. Arayat, never fails to capture my attention. Until now, I have snippets of memories of me looking out the window of my grandma’s van while we drove on towards the province of Bataan (or perhaps to Pangasinan) one summer decades ago. I remember those summer getaways with my relatives, where drives would always take hours. Maybe it was my mom or my grandma who pointed the mountain to me while it was still afar and explained that Mt. Arayat would be the indicator that we were already in Pampanga. I remember gazing at it for quite some time, and was amazed at how bigger it got as we drove closer to it. The first thought I had about it was that it must be a sad mountain being all alone in the middle of the fields, compared to the Sierra Madre mountain range back in my hometown.

Fast-forward thirty plus years later, I booked us a staycation in Magalang, Pampanga. This location was hadpicked because based on photos and reviews, it gives a good view of Mt. Arayat.

We stayed at Abe’s Farm, a rustic resort with lush gardens, a museum, and Filipino-styled villas. Abe’s Restaurant served delicious Filipino dishes, and one of our favorites was the pako (fiddlefern) salad, which is something we only get to eat when we go out of town as this vegetable is not typically sold at supermarkets in the city.

Our room was clean, cozy, and had a forest view. There was no TV in our room, and internet signal was weak in the resort. We took it as a sign to embrace being unplugged and spend the day appreciating the nature around us. That was a treat to do, as any I’m easily contented when I hear chirps of birds. And in Abe’s Farm, that was aplenty. While D roamed around to shoot different angles of Mt. Arayat, I stayed in our room and finished reading a book.

Our villa

Looking at our weekend calendar this year, I realize that most of our upcoming staycations are similar to the one we had in Abe’s Farm. Local tourism has definitely picked up, and I can’t wait to explore the unbeaten path.

Mt Arayat, Pampanga

By MrsWayfarer

Living Free and Making a Difference


  1. Lovely skies and beautiful views! You went on a good day, and it’s always wonderful to return to spots that you’d visited as a child, and to see them from an adult perspective decades later. I’m usually not one for salads, but the pako salad looks colorful and refreshing– something that I’ll need to try when I’m in that part of the Philippines!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It sure is always fun to revisit these places and it’s quite interesting the lasting the impressions they gave me. Pampanga is known for their good food. You’ll be in for a treat!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree lovely photos. I used to live in Colorado, USA. Picks Peak is the largest mountain in the continent USA. There are two larger mountains outside the continent.
    I made several trips to and around the mountain, but I never made it to the top.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Pikes Peak is a part of the Rocky Mountain Range some 3,000 miles long.
        I also looked up Mt. Arayat to see which island it is on. Then I saw photos of Mt. Arayat in different kinds of weather and elevation. Most impressive.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. That’s a nice shot of Mt Arayat, with the field in the foreground. The first time I saw this volcano was during the last leg of our volcano road trip in Luzon right before Covid. And we had the same observation ‘mag-isa lang sya’ hahaha 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes yes do it! It’s a wonderful adventure for the family. We started in Mayon (atv), went to a beach there, drove up to Tagaytay (glad to have been able to trek it (just 2 wks, phew) before the eruption), then Pinatubo (so fun!). I’ve posted our itinerary from this road trip if you’d like to see. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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