Escape to an Eco-park Tucked in the Foothills of the Sierra Madre

Known for being the most wonderful time of the year, the holiday season is also the most overwhelming time of the year. December days are filled with get-togethers with friends, year-end planning at work, family reunions, stressful last-minute Christmas gift shopping, decluttering, and simply trying to cram everything that needs to be done before the end of December. And as the new year rolls in, feelings of exhaustion and the desire to recharge are often what people experience.

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Photo from Mount Purro Nature Reserve

It does not have to be like that. What if there was a destination you could escape to, even for just a day or two, to rest, recharge, disconnect from the daily grind and busyness of life, and connect with family, friends, and even oneself amid the backdrop nature?

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Photo from Mount Purro Nature Reserve

Enter Mount Purro Nature Reserve, a family-run eco-destination tucked in the foothills of the Sierra Madre Mountain Range in Barangay Calawis, Antipolo.  The nature park is far from a typical hotel or resort. However, it does have some of the facilities and amenities you would expect to see in a resort: a reception area, dining area, guest rooms, function halls, and a swimming pool. What MPNR doesn’t have is air conditioning, WiFi, television sets, free toiletries, and room service. 

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Photo from Mount Purro Nature Reserve

It is a simple yet distinct sustainable travel destination for the whole family, the barkada, and even for someone who wants to travel solo. The eco-park offers cozy and comfortable kubo-inspired accommodations that bring a very unique experience. Imagine waking up to lush surroundings with a symphony of animal sounds as your background music. 

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Photo from Mount Purro Nature Reserve

When in Mount Purro, one can engage in outdoor activities such as hiking to Malvar Peak to witness the picturesque sea of clouds, going on a river walk, interacting with the local Dumagat tribe and learning all about their ways, and planting trees. There’s also a multilevel outdoor playground for kids which includes a mud kitchen, camping grounds, a pool, and big pavilions that are perfect for company outings and team building sessions. It’s the ideal place to disconnect from the demands of the daily grind and the lure of the online world. It’s where people can reconnect with nature and all its benefits.  

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Photo from Mount Purro Nature Reserve

Another highlight of the eco-park is Loli’s Kitchen, a rustic kitchen that serves family favorites that guests have come to love and crave for. Meals are comforting, hearty, and prepared with a ton of love by cooks who have been with the family for decades. Guests often claim it’s like dining in their Lola’s house. Meal time is also packed with stories told by Lolo Toto himself, the founder and steward of Mount Purro, who attends to guests and makes sure they are well fed and comfortable. 

Aside from the accommodations and activities, what makes Mount Purro Nature Reserve unique is its purpose and the family that runs the place. Lolo Toto, his wife Loli Baby, their kids, and grandchildren, have been stewards of MPNR for over 30 years, planting trees (more than 700,000 to date!), and working hand-in-hand with the local Dumagat community to preserve and protect the area. 

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Photo from Mount Purro Nature Reserve

Mount Purro is more than just a tourist destination. It is a place that advocates a lifestyle of stewardship, simplicity, and sharing. It also offers the perfect setting where one can disconnect from the digital world and keep the stress of daily life away by connecting with nature and reaping its benefits such as feeling refreshed, recharged, and focusing on the things that truly matter—because isn’t that the true essence of the holidays?