Tublay is now a growing ecotourism hub in Benguet. Recently, Gina Lopez, former DENR Secretary, has been visiting the municipality to help in developing ecotourism projects. Such initiatives will be a big help in uplifting the local communities while promoting the conservation of the natural wonders of Tublay. One of the locally-popular destinations in Tublay is the so-called Asin Hot Spring, located at sitio Asin in Tuel, Tublay.
Asin Hot Spring is frequented by local visitors due to its accessibility and proximity to La Trinidad and Baguio City. Known to have healing properties, who would not want to soak on such thermal waters? Of course, I couldn’t spare myself from such experience. So with two of my travel buddies, I rode my way to Asin Hot Spring.
Relishing Asin Hot Spring
Asin hot spring emerges from the rock creases and directly flow down the Tuel river. One would simply wonder where the waters are coming from. One of the local officials mentioned that there might be a nearby extinct volcano. Heck, they even say that the La Trinidad valley is a giant crater.
On another note, a hose has been put in place to channel the thermal waters to a shallow pool on the river. Recently, the barangay officials of Tuel made some additional improvements on the site.
According to the locals, the hottest part can boil an egg. We never tried doing that though. We just relaxed ourselves on one of the pools of Asin Hot Spring while gazing at the rising steams oozing with the thermal waters. Interestingly, one gets the chance to share casual fun and laughter with fellow visitors on the pool.
For me, it would be best to immerse on the hot springs during the morning and later on, swim on the cold pools of the Tuel river. Or you can do so alternately during both periods. Moreover, there are existing cottages which can be rented for 250 pesos. There are also available comfort rooms and a dressing room. For those who would like to stay overnight, there is a lodging just beside the hot spring.
How to Get to Asin Hot Spring?
From what I know, there are no jeeps heading straight to Asin Hot Spring from Baguio city and La Trinidad. However, there are passenger vehicles called “garage” which operate along the La Trinidad-Alapang-Alno-Tuel road. These are mostly stationed at Alapang Junction. Now, to get to this station, ride a jeep from Baguio City or La Trinidad bound to Tomay and/or Camp Dangwa. Don’t forget to tell the driver to drop you by the said junction. There is a waiting shade there to serve as your landmark. Just across this is the station.
From here, travel to sitio Asin in Tuel takes around 30-45 minutes. Fare is 350 pesos.
For those who want to loosen some fat or gain muscles, jogging is another option. For an average jogger, it may take more or less two hours of downhill and zigzag run. Along the way, one may catch a glimpse of beautiful mountain ranges including Mt. Pokgong.
Upon arriving at the entrance of the Asin Hot Spring, one needs to register and pay 20 pesos each. It was only in December 15, 2018 when the barangay officials started collecting environmental fees. This is to help in the sustainable management of the tourism site. By the way, there is no entrance fee for 11 years old and below while elders are eligible of a 20% discount.
Immersing on the Beauty of Tuel River
When you visit Asin Hot Spring, you not only get the chance to have a satisfying immersion on its thermal waters. You may also have a rejuvenating bath on the Tuel River. By the way, the Tuel River meets with the Balili River further downstream.
During sunny months, the waters of Tuel River are crystal-clear. There are a pocket of deep and wide pools, fit for swimming.
Because we opted for a more serene and uncluttered atmosphere, I and my friends followed the river upstream. There, we found a shaded site, surrounded with towering rock formations and alongside, a beautiful and naturally-built pool. Oh, to add thrill to our visit, we did jumping (not diving) on the deep pools.
When one follows the river further, there are even more pools and mini-waterfalls. However, for security purposes, better to have a guide.
Meanwhile, you can also side trip to Bayokbok falls, which is just more or less 30 minutes of trek from Asin Hot Spring. Just ask the locals there for directions. You may read this article about Bayokbok Falls for more information.
Reminders while at Asin Hot Spring:
- Properly dispose your garbage and litter. Never leave or throw them on the river. Put them in the available trash cans or better yet, take them back to where you came from. Let us help in keeping Asin Hot Spring clean and green.
- Always be mindful and alert especially for minors and non-swimmers since there have been previous incidents of drowning.
- There are no existing eateries near Asin Hot Spring except for a fishball stand and some stores. These stores offer snacks and items for cooking. It is best then to bring your own meals.
- As much as possible, make use of organic or naturally-made soaps when swimming or taking a bath on the spring and river.
- When seeking to do other explorations nearby, ask for a guide. This is for your safety.
- No bringing of any kind of liquor/brandy.
Additional Pictures :
Try Speaking Local Utterances:
As goes a popular adage, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” In the same way, you can also try conversing with the locals using their language. This is especially helpful in building rapport with the community. Ibaloi is the main language in Tuel where Asin Hot Spring is located. I get it. You don’t need to be well-versed. But you can at least try common utterances such as the following. Have fun learning and using them:)
|Common Utterances of the Locals||English Translation|
|Mapteng jen agsapa||Good Morning|
|Mapteng jen mashem||Good Afternoon|
|Mapteng ja davi||Good Evening|
|Edavas kami bengat||We are passing by|
|Kamusta||How are you|
|Enakad/Enahad kami la||We are going home|
|Dinmaw kami bisitaen iya mayat jen dugad yu||We came to visit your beautiful place|
|Mayat ta enunan taha muwan||It’s good to see you|
Knowing Asin Hot Spring More:
If you need further information that may help in setting up your itinerary to Asin Hot Spring, simply ask them on the comment section below. You can also message us on our facebook page namely, Daniel’s Eco-Travels. I will be more than glad and willing to answer them whenever I can.