Visit If You Dare: The 3 Creepiest Trees In The Philippines

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In the Philippines, the Balete tree is often associated as homes not for just insects, but also for supernatural creatures like tikbalang (demon horse), dwende (elves), kapre (smoking giants), and diwata (fairies).

Urban legend has it that at night, if you drive through Balete Drive in New Manila, Quezon City, a street named after a huge Balete tree that used to stand there in the middle of the road, a White Lady will suddenly appear out of nowhere and try to flag down your vehicle.

But if you really want to get scared, you’ll have to go out to the province and visit these three mystical trees.

At night.

Alone.

These are not your ordinary trees.

Make sure to bring your camera (or phone) to document any unnatural sightings or suspicious sounds emanating from these mysterious local attractions.

The Old Enchanted Balete Tree in Siquijor

Old Enchanted Balete Tree Siquijor

Photo by Kaye Pintac

Where is it?

Brgy. Campalanas, Lazi, Siquijor

Siquijor Lazi Map

Why see it?

When in Siquijor, don’t miss the chance to visit this century-old Balete tree. Because of its humungous size and eerie outline, this 400-year old tree easily became a tourist spot in the province of Siquijor.

What makes this Balete tree unique is the spring that emanates from the roots of the tree that goes directly to the man-made pool beneath it. It is interesting to note that the locals don’t know where the water is coming from.

Surprisingly, the water is very clean with fish swimming in it. If you want an instant fish spa, you may even dip your feet into the water and the doctor fish or the garra rufa will gladly exfoliate your feet for you. Everything in here is for free but you may wish to give a donation for the maintenance of the place.

As for hair-raising stories about this ancient tree, locals claim that they have seen old little people or elves surrounding the tree when the moon is full and apparitions during rainy nights. It’s up to you to find out the truth at your own risk.

How do I get there?

Get to Siquijor from Manila by taking a 1-hour flight to Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental and then taking another 1-hour ferry ride to Larena, Siquijor from the Dumaguete Port.

Hire a multicab to bring you to Campalanas where the tree is located. It is 10 meters from Siquijor’s National Highway and just few minutes away from Capilay Spring.

The “Millennium Tree” of Aurora

Millenium Tree Aurora Baler

Photo by ruzelvia

Where is it?

Brgy. Quirino, Maria Aurora, Aurora

Maria-Aurora-Aurora-Map

Why see it?

The towering Balete Tree in Maria Aurora, also known as the “Millenium Tree,” is said to be the largest Balete tree in Asia.

At 600 years old, this enchanting tree in the town of Maria Aurora attracts tourists because of its massive size. Supposedly, it takes 60 adults holding hands with arms outstretched to encircle the giant tree.

The tree grows on a private property. Legend has it that the owner wanted it removed with a bulldozer. When he tried, a family member got sick. As did the operator of the bulldozer. So he did the smart thing and left the tree alone.

Tourists now flock to see this gigantic tree because it’s big enough to enter and climb up its innards so you can pretend you’re a Keebler elf.

However, if you know the spine-chilling true nature of Balete Trees, that they actually find a host tree to attach themselves to while choking the host to death, then you might think twice about entering its twisted roots for fear of being suffocated just like what it did to its host tree.

If you are up for the challenge, prepare to go barefoot, as it is the easiest way to go from root to root of what seems to be a tangled tunnel. If you are claustrophobic, you can stick with climbing the gnarled roots outside the tree itself.

How do I get there?

By Car: You can take North Luzon Expressway and exit at SCTEX. Enter the La Paz, Tarlac tollgate then follow the highway going to Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija. This highway will lead you to the Aurora border leading to Baler.

By Bus: Genesis Transport Bus provides the only direct route from Manila to Aurora, Baler. Located along EDSA in Pasay City and Cubao, you can either choose from their regular or deluxe bus.

From the town proper of Baler, hail a tricycle and ask the driver to take you to the Balete Park in Barangay Quirino, Maria Aurora, where the famous Balete Tree is located. The tricycle ride from the town of Baler to Maria Aurora will take about 30 minutes.

The “Wonder Tree” of Canlaon City

Where is it?

Lumapao, Canlaon, Negros Oriental

Negros Oriental Canlaon Map

Why see it?

Dubbed as the “Wonder Tree” by the locals, this Balete tree is the oldest recorded tree in the province and possibly even in the country.

It is believed to be 1,328 years old. So old that the tree was already standing long before the Philippines was discovered by Magellan! The colossal tree mightily stands in the middle of rice and coffee plantations in OISCA Farm in Lumabao.

At night, curious travelers can’t help but check out and be awestruck by the illuminated tree because the foliage serves as a sanctuary to thousands of fireflies. Superstitious people in Canlaon believe that the Balete Tree is a gathering spot for fairies, which causes the tree to light up every night. Aside from fireflies, lizards, bats, and different kinds of insects have made its wide tree trunk of the Balete their natural habitat.

It’s said that provoking the spirits dwelling in this mysterious tree causes great harm and sickness, thus muttering a word of respect or asking for permission before touching or going anywhere near the tree is imperative you want to risk offending the magical beings living there.

How do I get there?

Take a 1-hour flight from Manila to Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental.

From Dumaguete City, take a 4-hour bus ride that goes directly to Canlaon City via any of the Ceres Liner buses or try a van-for hire for a faster travel time of about 3 hours. Once you get to Canlaon City proper, hire a motorcycle to OISCA Farm. Travel time from the city is about 25 minutes.

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About Author

Toni Alvarez

Having been bitten by the travel bug, exploring the world has been an obsession to her. Toni Alvarez sees to it that not a year will pass by without her satisfying her wanderlust and writing online itineraries after every travel has been automatic to her.