10 Inexpensive Things To Do in Calamba, Philippines

things to do in calamba philippines
Maria Lona
Maria Lona 

Located in the middle of a terrain where the famous Filipino place Mt. Mariang Makiling lies, is Calamba. It is a city in the province of Laguna, a place known for its top staycations spots, as well as local delicacies like buko (coconut) pie. As Calamba sits at the foot of the grand sight, nature has provided it with life’s most precious element, water. Calamba’s natives have been honed to deal with life’s difficult toils, struggling with health concerning issues, as they live in lands that need to be toiled by hand. However, the natural flow that runs has blessed this place with the gift of springs and a life that provided the previous generations with everything they have now. Its present establishments, good food and rich cultural and historical background will bring you a trip you’ll always look back on.

Calamba, as it is known to most Filipinos, is quite a famous place in the Philippine history. This is the town where the famous national hero was born and originally resided, Dr. Jose Rizal. It can be reached within 1-2 hours by bus. Rides are made available within the metro at three different points: Cubao, in front of Alimall; Kamias, Quezon City near Cubao; Buendia, on the corner of Taft Avenue, Manila.

You can also drive your own vehicle and traverse through the South Luzon Express Way and you’ll be there within the estimated time depending on the traffic. But if you don’t want to be bothered by the hassles of going through the busy streets, then just take the air-conditioned bus. The area is actually 54 kilometers (34 miles) south of Manila. Interesting sites await you, so come and see the fascinating past of the country in the Resorts Capital of the Philippines. Check out this list of inexpensive things to do in Calamba, Philippines, below.

1. Get to know one of the men behind the Philippine Independence: Rizal Shrine

Rizal Shrine Calamba City
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user WikiCalambenyo used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Rizal Shrine is one of the best places to visit in Calamba, Laguna. Most Philippine heroes come from the grassroots, but this man whose dreams surpassed his height, has driven many other Filipinos to think and respond to the call to stand for freedom. He lived a comfortable life where he could acquire what he wanted, travel to wherever he wanted and even go to school outside of the country. Why did a well-off lad like him choose to die for his country and for the many?

A visit to his hometown and seeing the place where he grew up will give you a glimpse of the place where he had been groomed to become one of the Philippines’s greatest men of all time. Rizal Shrine showcases a two-story, Spanish-Colonial style house in Calamba, Laguna which was reproduced in 1950. Antique items and memories of his childhood, depicted in pictures that are displayed, are just a few things to see which remain to be relished. So get to know the man at his home in this little town in Calamba.

Rizal Shrine

Address: Francisco Mercado St., cor. Jose P. Rizal St., Brgy. 5, Poblacion

Website: Rizal Shrine

2. A cairn to behold: Calambanga

Calamba Claypot (Banga) (Poblacion, Laguna; 2017-02-16)
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Patrick Roque used under CC BY-SA 4.0

A tale as old as time, this very large clay pot known to be the largest in the world is a mark that immortalizes the folk tale on how the place got its name. With the city’s barangays inscribed in its structure and embedded in the city’s official seal, Calambanga is one attraction you shouldn’t miss visiting.


Website: Calambanga

3. The seat of the town's faith

Calamba Church, Laguna
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Elmer B. Domingo used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Values set and virtues practiced are important things that catholicism has always emphasized in each Filipino family, hence, each place has always been highlighted with houses of worship that partake in the embodiment of the Filipino culture. Just adjacent to the Rizal Shrine is the oldest church in the city, St. John the Baptist Church, where Jose Rizal is believed to have been christened. If you are still looking for where to go in Calamba, Laguna, look no further than this beautiful local church.

St. John the Baptist Church

Address: Jose P. Rizal St., Calamba, Laguna 4027

Website: St. John the Baptist Church

4. Visit World War II's fallen generals in the theater of combat in Los Banos

University of the Philippines at Los Banos-Gate
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Julia Sumangil used under CC BY 2.0

After 4 years of struggle against the Japanese invasion, the University of the Philippines, Los Banos, is now the site of the tragic ending of the 2 notorious war generals, whose shrines nestle within the institution. The shrines are dedicated to General Tomoyuki Yamashita, and General Masaharu Homma.

General Tomoyuki Yamashita had escaped after the war and was trialled and then transferred from one province to another, while accumulating treasures. General Masaharu Homma was demoted, then underwent trial. Both men were hanged and shot in the places where the shrines are located. These two Japanese generals’ shrines are marks of victories claimed by the Filipinos.

Homma-Yamashita Shrine

Address: campus of the University of Philippines, Los Baños, Laguna

Website: Homma-Yamashita Shrine

5. Get some fresh air at the Japanese Garden and enjoy the placid view of Lake Caliraya

Morning view from Eco-saddle at Lake Caliraya, Lumban, Laguna
Source: Photo by Flickr user zaldy fabia used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Lake Caliraya is an embankment dam that was constructed in 1939. This artificial lake atop a plateau is an area which provides a large water reservoir for generating hydroelectric power for Southern Luzon. Various water sport activities, and other outdoor activities including fishing are common indulgences here. Beside it is the 11 hectare (110,000 m2) memorial park of the Japanese soldiers who died in World War II. If you come and visit this place, the one hundred steps within the garden will take you to the breathtaking view of Lake Caliraya. So don’t miss it!

Lake Caliraya - Japanese Garden

Address: Rizal Park, Toowoomba, Caliraya, Laguna

Website: Japanese Garden

6. See the resting place and museum in the Nagcarlan Catacombs

The Famed Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Lucidoadrian used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Built together with the construction of the expanded St. Bartholomew Parish Church and rectory, the Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery was built exclusively for Spanish friars, prominent town citizens and members of elite Catholic families. Away from the town center, Fr. Velloc designed it differently from all the other cemeteries, making it the one and only in the country. It’s a fascinating locations you should see.

Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery

Address: Barangay Bambang, Nagcarlan, Laguna

Website: Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery

7. Calamba Baywalk

Calamba City Lakeside
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user WikiCalambenyo used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Calamba Baywalk is a stunning park in the city. Walk to the very edge of this Calamba tourist spot and stare out at majestic Laguna Lake and the gorgeous hills that surround it, or watch the sunset with your loved ones. If being more active is in your personality, take a jet ski or a boat out onto the water and enjoy the wind in your hair. Fishing and cycling around the perimeter of the lake from Calamba are also popular activities.

Calamba Baywalk

Address: Aplaya, Calamba, Laguna, Philippines

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

8. Republic Wakepark

Source: Photo by Flickr user Brian Evans used under CC BY-ND 2.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

This fun waterpark is the best place around Laguna Lake to practice or learn how to wakeboard. The waves are gentler and easier for beginners, and there are always classes offered for those seeking to improve. Already a master? Republic Wakepark also has a number of expert ramps for those who want to show off their skills. There’s even a small restaurant that sells delicious seafood pasta and ramen.

Republic Wakepark

Address: West Diversity Boulevard Nuvali, Calamba, 4027 Laguna, Philippines

Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 8:30am - 5:30pm; Fri - Sun: 8:30am - 10pm

9. The Plaza: Calamba City Park

Rizal Monument in Calamba
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Alvinhizon used under CC BY-SA 4.0

If you have some time to spare while in Calamba, check out The Plaza: Calamba City Park. Stroll along cobblestone paths bordered by vibrant hedges and trees, and contemplate the beauty of the Philippines. Old-school street lamps illuminate the way at night, and there are frequent events going on nearby – including seasonal amusement rides for kids. The centerpiece is definitely the impressive statue of Jose Rizal, who is considered the country’s national hero.

The Plaza: Calamba City Park

Address: Real, Calamba, 4027 Laguna, Philippines

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

10. SM City Calamba

SM mall
Source: Photo by Flickr user Chloe used under CC BY 2.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

SM City Calamba is an ideal way to enjoy some commercial fun while in Calamba. This large mall has an assortment of international and local brands, as well as department stores, clinics, and a good food court. Drop by a bakery or pastry shop, eat some delicious Filipino food, or catch a movie at the in-mall movie theatre. Whether you are after souvenirs, clothes, or just a good time, SM City Calamba has something for everyone.

SM City Calamba

Address: National Road, Brgy, Real, Calamba, 4027 Laguna, Philippines

Website: SM City Calamba

Opening hours: 10am - 9pm (daily)

Be surprised by the riches in Calamba

There are so many fascinating ways to spend a weekend far away from the cities, and the experience of having it all in one place at a competitive cost is something that you should take grasp of. Visit Calamba!

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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An educator who never believes that a doctorate degree is enough to explore a wonderful world. A mother of three who loves to bake, design and learn new things each day and an adventurer who never...Read more

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