Pulangbato Falls is located in the Ocoy Valley in the town of Valencia Negros Oriental. It is aptly named so because of the waterfall’s seemingly red river water which is caused by the presence of natural reddish rocks found in the area. Pula is the native word for red while bato, for rock. Thus, if interpreted, the name would be red rock.
Like many other waterfalls, swimming lagoons and pools in the town of Valencia, Pulangbato Falls is blessed with calm and refreshing waters. This is mainly because of Valencia’s geography – 60% of its land composition being hilly and mountainous – that the climatic temperature is always moderate to cool.
Pulangbato Falls has a wide cascade. The water pours down into a swimming hole that is also deep enough for high dives. Enthusiasts clamber up to a nearby rock that functions as a diving point and free fall into the water basin. The shape of Pulangbato Falls has been considered unique because of its layered structure. At the first tier, the cascade begins narrowly and widens progressively as it moves down the next levels. At a distance, the waterfalls look triangular in shape.
It is also the color of the water in Pulangbato Falls that makes it more special. It appears to be red but quickly turns clear once taken out from the river. It must be only a reflection of the red rock formations that make up most of the landscape. Surrounding the waterfall is thick foliage of wild plants and vegetation coupled with some trees. The ambience is rather calming in an unsophisticated kind of way because of the impression of being far from civilization.
Except for the presence of some makeshift huts and small stores selling light snacks and candies, Pulangbato Falls is otherwise a non-commercialized area which is good because the serenity is preserved. This can also prevent the inevitable effects of tourism like garbage and pollution.
Getting to Pulangbato Falls is just as easy as getting to all other destinations located in the town of Valencia. It is basically only a 20 minute ride from Dumaguete City and from the Valencia town proper, another 20 minutes or so followed by a short hike to the waterfalls. The easiest way is to get van rental services to bring you directly there. There are also guided tours to Pulangbato Falls that can be availed of, usually organized by travel agencies and hotels, which one can join especially if traveling alone.
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