Christmas Guide

5 Christmas Villages in the South That Are Pretty Darn Festive

Feel the Christmas spirit!

By: Viktor Austria | October 01, 2022
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Due to changing quarantine measures, the activities, destination/s, store/s, establishment/s featured in this article might be temporarily prohibited or closed under the latest government policies. LGUs might also implement health protocols and travel requirements. Please get in touch with the establishment/s before visiting. Stay safe!


christmas village south

You can beat the Christmas crowd by visiting these yuletide villages and attractions early.

Image: @mcmountainhome

Hard as it may be to believe, Christmas is in a couple of months, and you know it – shopping centers have been decked with decors, dishing out holiday deals, and playing the quintessential Christmas jams as early as September. Sadly, this means city dwellers also have to deal with traffic deadlocks and long queues.

Christmas comes once a year, so flee from all the loud parties and the pollution! Head to these Christmas villages in the south for the holidays! At the south of the metro, these will hardly make for your holiday blues: these five Christmas villages in the south are where people can take a breath of fresh air and feel the yuletide cheers.


1. The Gingerbread House

Where: Matagbak-Palumlum Road, Alfonso, Cavite
Estimated travel time: From Manila, 2-2.5 hours via commute, 1.5-2 hours via private car
Recommended budget: PhP150 per person, consumable on restaurant food items only


christmas village

Build your gingerbread buddy inside the honey-sweet halls of the Gingerbread House.

Image: The Gingerbread House PH Facebook page

Start your trip down south with something sweet, literally. The famous Gingerbread House of Alfonso, Cavite is a private paradise near the town proper but is intimately tucked inside Barangay Palumlum.

The Christmas-themed commune greets visitors with a big manor bearing resembling the fairytale gingerbread house. This huge house is a playhouse and a restaurant in one. On the first floor is the Snack Place that serves freshly baked pastries like cupcakes, cookies, muffins, brownies, and entrées and kinds of pasta. Meanwhile, the play area is upstairs and through the veranda, where kids are welcomed by the big huggable bears and gingerbread characters.

There’s also the Sweet Spa, where a pool of fishes feast on your feet’s calluses; the Candy Village is marked by miniature houses, swings, and slides. Here, you can roast s’mores in the campfire or treat yourself to tufts of cotton candies or their rainbow burger.

Tip: Apply mosquito lotion or patch before entering! The area is dense and secluded, so mosquitoes and biting insects abound. The Gingerbread House is reopening its doors on September 18, 2021. Follow them on their Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/thegingerbreadhouseph/, to catch their latest updates!

How to get to The Gingerbread House: via commute: ride a bus bound for Nasugbu from its terminal in Buendia and get off at Barangay Upli. From there, ride a tricycle that can take you directly to Gingerbread House; via private car: From Manila, take SLEX and exit to Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Road. Drive until you reach the junction of Tagaytay-Calamba Road, then turn right, passing the rotunda and heading straight to Tagaytay-Nasugbu Road. Drive until you reach Barangay Upli, then turn right towards Alilio Drive. Turn left onto Upli-Palumlum Road, then left onto Matagbak-Palumlum Road; The Gingerbread House should be at your right.



2. Crosswinds Christmas Village

Where: Crosswinds Resort Suites, Central Calamba Road, Barangay Iruhin, Tagaytay City
Estimated travel time: From Manila, 2-2.5 hours via commute, 1.5-2 hours via private car
Recommended budget: Free


Tagaytay

Cap off your visit with Tagaytay’s trademark, a heart-warming bowl of bulalo (stew with beef shanks and marrows) provided by Pamana Restaurant.

Image: Crosswinds Tagaytay Facebook page

Feel the Christmas holiday spirit at the Christmas Village inside Crosswinds in Tagaytay that will take you straight to a European holiday.

During the day, the deep Christmas pastels of Crosswinds’ rows of houses and slopes filled with pine trees are striking as they are. At night, however, it turns into a dazzling display of lights. The streets of the Swiss-themed resort suites turn bright with swatches of red, green, and indigo and yellow lights illuminating the Christmas tree and reindeer decors.

Much of the attraction is the Alpine Village, identified by the windmill atop a coffee shop. There’s the giant red chair, the holiday tram dubbed Crosswinds Express, and the miniature Ferris wheel. Other beautiful backdrops for your season’s selfies are Santa’s House and the brilliant lights display along with Cedar Brooks and Cedar Lane at night. There’s also the Yule Shop and Santa’s Treasures, which sells Christmas souvenirs and goodies.

Tip: If you plan to stay in one of the suites, car plate registration is required before your reservation. Follow Crosswinds Tagaytay’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/crosswindstagaytay/, to catch their latest updates.

How to get to Crosswinds Tagaytay: via commute: ride a bus bound for Nasugbu from its terminal in Buendia and get off at Olivarez in Tagaytay. From there, you may ride jeeps bound for People’s Park, as they pass by Crosswinds; via private car: From Manila, take SLEX and exit to Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Road or Eton and drive straight until you reach the rotunda. From there, turn left onto Tagaytay- Calamba Road, then go until you get Crosswinds Drive to your left.


3. Calaca Christmas Village

Where: Calaca Municipal Hall, Marasigan Street, Calaca, Batangas
Estimated travel time: From Manila, 3.5-4 hours via commute, 2.5-3 hours via private car
Recommended budget: Free


Cavite

Calaca’s Christmas Village runs until the first few days of January.

Images: Jennylyn Mayuga Paligutan and Elreen Caparas Facebook pages

The municipality of Calaca in Batangas, large as it may appear on the map, actually has a humble population with less than a hundred thousand. The reason why for its local government, it’s such a sight to see when people assemble at the municipal hall and celebrate in awe of Calaca’s Christmas Village.

The theme changes yearly, but it’s always alive and impressive nonetheless. In 2017, the town government did a “Christmas around the world” concept, and last year, it dressed the town center for a “Candyland Christmas” celebration. It had almost 300 Christmas lanterns and a 30-foot Christmas tree to complete the lights display.

This Christmas village celebration never fails to uplift every Calaqueños holiday spirit, which is Calaca’s local government’s goal after all. In recent years, more than a hundred people pass by each night to take photos and post them online. This admiration gives the town plenty of publicity, driving people from all over to partake in their annual Calacatchara Festival.

The hall starts to light up in mid-October, and Calaqueños can’t wait for this year’s festive look.

Tip: After you’ve taken photos of the beautiful Christmas display, bring home a bottle of their local atchara (pickled papaya) to support their local business. Follow Calaca Municipal Hall’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/Municipal-Government-Of-Calaca-111193532293326/, to catch the city’s Christmas celebration guidelines this year.

How to get to Calaca Municipal Hall: via commute: From Manila, ride a bus bound for Lemery from its terminal in Buendia, these buses pass by Calaca; via private car: From Manila, take SLEX and exit to Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Road or Eton and drive straight until you reach the rotunda. From there, turn left onto Tagaytay- Calamba Road, then straight onto Tagaytay-Nasugbu Road. At the next main junction, turn left onto Diokno Highway, then after about 10 kilometers, turn right onto Madalunot Road. Drive straight until you reach Calaca.


4. Taal Paskong Masaya Christmas Lights and Sounds Festival

Where: Taal Park and Basilica, Agoncillo Street, Taal, Batangas
Estimated travel time: From Manila, 2-2.5 hours via commute, 1.5-2 hours via private car
Recommended budget: Free


Batangas

The country’s Heritage Town can also throw up a futuristic holiday display.

Image: Jen Gonzales-Caraos

Don’t leave Batangas just yet, as another Christmas village is worth the visit: the town of Taal joins the merriment with its Paskong Masaya Christmas Lights and Sounds Festival.

Sparkling along Agoncillo Street, the lights display boasts a winding tunnel of lights, LED step lights, jellyfish-shaped street lights, a giant Christmas tree, and the quintessential nativity scenes. Tying the exhibition together is the laser lights show with stunning smoke effects.

Traveling to Taal, you definitely won’t miss the showing, as it is just beside the historic Minor Basilica of St. Martin de Tours, the oldest church in the country and all of Asia. Each year, thousands of tourists and locals flock to see the lights show. It never fails to make it to media outlets, which adds only to Taal's frequented landmarks.

This year, the local government of Taal looks further to add more Christmas lights displays to the festival, something that everyone will look forward to.

Tip: Besides the Basilica of Taal, other nearby spots are the Agoncillo Family House and the Doña Marcela Agoncillo Museum, both worthy additions to your family’s Christmas trip to Taal. Follow Municipality of Taal’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/MunicipalityOfTaal/, to catch the city’s Christmas celebration guidelines this year.

How to get to Taal, Batangas: via commute: From Manila, ride a bus bound for Lipa City from Buendia terminals and South Station in Alabang. Get off at Tambo Exit and ride a jeep bound for Taal; via private car: From Manila, take SLEX and enter drive all the way to STAR Tollway, then exit onto Lipa City. Turn left onto President Jose P. Laurel Highway, then turn right onto National Highway. Follow the road for about 15 kilometers, then turn right at the junction onto Palico-Balayan-Batangas Road. Drive straight, then turn right onto Calle Martin, the Basilica and Agoncillo Street will be on your left.



5. Nuvali Field of Lights

Where: Nuvali Park, Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Road, Barangay Don Jose, Santa Rosa, Laguna
Estimated travel time: From Manila, 2-2.5 hours via commute, 1.5-2 hours via private car
Recommended budget: Free


Christmas 2019

Nuvali’s Magical Field of Lights illuminates for a show every 30 minutes starting at 6:00 PM.

Image: @nuvaliph

To reach Nuvali’s Magical Field of Lights, you have to stroll through a stunning 50-meter spiral Christmas light tunnel. Once you make it, you will be greeted by 5,000 tulips and dandelion stems dancing in perfect sync with your favorite Christmas and Disney songs. These are complemented LED light spheres, anahaw-like (fountain palm) tube lights, and an abundance of Christmas trees of various vivid colors. Once the show runs, these are accompanied by synthetic fog effects and flashing lasers.

The illustrious exhibition is brought to life by light director Voltaire de Jesus and draws inspiration from the vibrant tulip fields in Holland. As a testament to its brilliance, the display has won the Silver Stevie Award for Best Exhibition Display. Talk about spending Christmas in a world-class venue!

Tip: Bring a jacket and an umbrella in tow! Since Nuvali is outdoors and shares the same altitude as Tagaytay, especially during evenings, it can get brisk and possibly even rain. Follow Nuvali’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/NUVALIOfficial/, to catch their latest updates.

How to get to Nuvali: via commute: P2P buses from Makati go straight to Nuvali. There are also buses and vans bound for Santa Rosa or Balibago from Pasay, Kamias in Quezon City, and Alabang in Muntinlupa. From there, you can ride jeepneys bound for Nuvali; via private car: From Manila, take SLEX and exit to Santa Rosa-Tagaytay Road. Drive straight until you pass Vista Mall Santa Rosa and see Ayala Malls Solenad; Nuvali should be right across.


Christmas is just around the corner anyway, so why not take that holiday trip in advance? Check out Yoorekka Consumer Magazine for more Christmas spots and guides in Tagaytay and Southern Luzon this holiday season!


Stay safe as you travel! Make sure to follow social distancing protocols and observe health precautions wherever you go. For now, keep safe!


This article was originally published in Yoorekka on November 01, 2019.


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About Viktor Austria
Viktor would love to receive an extra hour a day as a Christmas gift. That way, he won’t have to struggle over splitting his 24 hours among making brand copies and campaigns, writing children’s stories, going to the gym, commuting around Taguig, and feeding his two overweight cats. He hates the hustle culture, that’s why he’s thankful for friends who have time to spare on weekends, preferably over spicy ramen and cold bottles of beer.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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