Wanting to find some falls not too far from Manila to practice waterfall photography, I did some research and found out about Daranak Falls in Tanay, Rizal and Balite Falls in Amadeo, Cavite. The latter was only some 15 kilometers away from Tagaytay so when I drove my mom and sisters one weekend for the latter I had my chance to see Balite Falls.
Balite Falls is nestled in a simple but clean and peaceful resort in the town of Amadeo. The latter is famous for its coffee; many coffee shops get their supply of beans from this town. A stream running through the resort drops down on a small shallow pool before cascading down into a larger and deeper pool at another lower level. The two waterfalls thus formed are the centerpiece of the resort.
The upper level of falls upstream empties into a shallow pool. There was a sign though warning people not to swim here – surprising since this pool was really shallow.
The waters of the stream and falls are relatively clean. The resort is covered in lush vegetation and is ideal for picnics or a quiet getaway. When we arrived in the morning there were just a few people around, most of them preparing for a picnic and fewer still taking a dip in the pools. As noon approached, however, the place started to get more visitors. The warm and courteous hosts told us that the place really fills up during the summer.
A closer look at some of the many arms of Balite Falls.
We left well before noon to have lunch in nearby Tagaytay. The roads, even the one leading to the resort are well paved all the way, making Balite Falls an ideal place to visit if you are looking for a quieter place away from Tagaytay (just go there on a weekday as the place can fill up during the weekends).
The main falls of Balite – just below the upper level of falls upstream.
The shorter route going to Amadeo from Metro Manila would be to take the South Luzon Expressway, take the Southwoods exit and head for Amadeo through Indang. Since I didn’t like the traffic on this route though, I decided to take the Santa Rosa/Greenfield City exit on the way to Tagaytay, passing through Santa Rosa and Silang on the way. At Tagaytay continue on past the junction, turn right at Mahogany Avenue, then right again at Crisanto M. De Los Reyes Ave. Drive straight along the latter for about 14 kilometers or so (avoid going through Amadeo town proper) and you will find Balite Road on the left of the highway – the road that goes straight to the resort and falls. There is a sign on the highway so it is not easy to get lost.
If you are commuting take the bus headed for Trece Martires-Indang and ask the driver to drop you off at Manggahan. There are jeepneys near the 7-Eleven store there that will take you to Balite, Amadeo in barangay Banay-Banay. Just ask the driver to drop you off at the entrance to Balite Falls.