Farm staycations are becoming more popular nowadays. As we seek our way back to nature, we get more drawn to farms and rest houses in natural settings. One such place is Costales Nature Farms in Majayjay, Laguna.
Costales Nature Farms is the premiere agri-tourism destination in the country. It also offers a quiet retreat for those who’d like to relax and unwind, as well as farm tours for those who are interested in growing greens.
Here’s our experience at Costales Nature Farms!
Our stay at Costales Nature Farms
I went for an overnight stay here at Costales Nature Farms with my blogger friend Jona (Jona Shares). We both enjoy nature so it’s the perfect place for us to visit.
We stayed in a native kubo with humble furnishings. It has a small balcony with a farm view. It was simple but not shabby — basically just what you’d expect in a farm. In fact, we slept soundly later that night!
Guided farm tour
One of the things you can do at Costales Nature Farm is join a guided farm tour.
We had this tour just after we checked in. Our guide Ate Neri showed us around the farm and explained the technologies that they use in Costales Nature Farms. Most notable is the use of EMs or effective micro-organisms, which makes the soil rich and counter bad bacteria.
Ate Neri showed us how they plant seedlings in containers and pointed us some of the things they use for urban gardening, such as Grow Bags. I love this part since I’m interested in UCG (urban container gardening), which is advisable for households to grow their own produce.
We were also shown the nursery and vermisery (basically types of greenhouses) and their fertilizer area.
Of course, we also got to see some of the animals they keep in the farm. There are various types of free-range and organic chickens in Costales Nature Farms, and it so happened that during the time of our tour, it was their breeding schedule. Some of the chickens we saw were sitting and in the process of laying eggs. We even got to collect one or two eggs laying in one of the coops.
We also saw where the rabbits are kept. It’s interesting to note that despite the number of rabbits in this cottage, the cottage doesn’t have a piss smell. Ate Neri says it’s due to their diet and the EMs sprayed in the soil.
Lastly, here are some pigs that they keep. Mass production of livestock is done in a separate farm (Farm A is the one open for guests, Farm B houses mass production and only accessible to workers).
As we went along the tour, Ate Neri also pointed out a number of trees (e.g., curry), herbs (e.g., tarragon, spearmint) and forage crops (power plants for animals). Costales Nature Farm practices zero-waste management, so everything that grows in this farm is used in some way.
Harvesting lettuce and salad making
Here’s another favorite part of our stay in Costales Nature Farms: lettuce picking, salad making and tea making!
For the salad making, we get to pick the ingredients. Ate Neri showed us how to cut off the lettuce from the ground. We got iced lettuce, romaine lettuce and frillice lettuce. Lettuce picking is honestly so fun. We also picked flowers — blue ternate, cosmos and kamantigue.
We found an empty cottage in the farm and made our salads. Here’s mine!
Afterwards, we proceeded to making tea using (1) tarragon and spearmint and (2) blue ternate and tarragon. The first tea tasted like menthol candies, and Ate Neri said spearmint is indeed the one used in candies and toothpastes. The second is interesting to make because the blue ternate creates a blue-colored drink that then turns to purple as we add calamansi juice. Honey is added to our tea as sweetener.
Fishing is advisable on mornings. We only caught small tilapias which we threw back in the ponds. Apparently, the older (and bigger) fishes tend to stay at the bottom to eat planktons, so it’s only the small ones who get baited. At the end, we simply threw pieces of lettuce in the pond and watched the fishes finish them off.
Costales Nature Farm offers a farm-to-plate dining experience so you’re guaranteed that the ingredients used in the meals are fresh and healthy! Not to mention delicious as well.
I particularly like their salad with their own version of vinaigrette (also sold in their stores at P200 per bottle). I also recommend the ff: mushroom soup (the tastiest mushroom soup I’ve had), crispy pork liempo, ginataang kale (kale in coconut milk) and their famous pork-ganic longganisa. For the drinks, try any of their tea and their sweet cucumber juice.
Honestly, we love all the food served in Costales Nature Farms and I’m amazed at the variety of dishes they prepare from harvesting produce in their backyard.
Jona and I had an amazing time at Costales Nature Farms.
We had a lot of fun exploring the farms and greenhouses and doing activities, particularly picking lettuce and salad making. Aside from the activities, we also enjoyed the splendid views of Mount Banahaw at the background.
The food was great. I’m eternally fascinated at farm-to-table setups, and the food here isn’t only fresh but delicious as well.
Before we left for home, we made sure to check out the souvenir shop at the farm. The souvenir shop features seedlings, organic products such as juices and wines, and household items. Potted plants and herbs are also available for only P50 each. I wanted to buy one but didn’t want to bring a pot for me on the commute, but Jona bought herbs for herself.
We talked about looking for similar stays in the future.
About Costales Nature Farms
Costales Nature Farms produces organic vegetables and herbs and also processes organic meat. They supply major corporations such as Shopwise, Healthy Options and Itallianni’s. They also offer internships, workshops and tutorials to those who want to learn more about organic farming. Lastly, they are open for investments particularly from OFWs.
Costales Nature Farms is also open for leisure visits — both day trips and overnight stays.
Whether you’re a nature lover like us, a couple who wants to do activities together, a family who wants somewhere to bond and have fun or a student who wants to have hands-on learning about organic farming, Costales Nature Farms is ideal for you!
How to get to Costales Nature Farms
Costales Nature Farms is located in Majayjay, Laguna. It’s 2.5-3 hours away from Manila.
- From EDSA (Option 1): Ride a bus en route to Calamba. Get off at SM Calamba and then ride a van going to Lucban.
- From EDSA (Option 2): Ride a bus en route to Sta. Cruz, Laguna. At the Sta. Cruz Market, ride a jeep to Majayjay. From Majayjay town proper, take a jeep to Lucban.
- From Alabang: Head to the terminal in Festival Mall and ride a van bound for Lucban (2.5 hours, P180). Get off at Costales Nature Farms.
Public vehicles headed to Lucban also pass by Costales Nature Farms. Just tell the driver to drop you off here.
If you’re going from Festival Mall in Alabang, make sure to allot time for waiting. In my case, it was almost an hour before the van got full.
Costales Nature Farms rates
Here are the current rates for Costales Nature Farms (updated as of 2020):
Day trip rates, including guided farm tour and snacks:
- Lakbay Aral Tour: P275
- Lakbay Aral Tour (with lunch): P695
- Green Salad Tour (includes vegetable pick and pay): P495
Overnight rates start at P1985 (good for 2 pax), including breakfast and guided farm tour.
Costales Nature Farms also offer tours to nearby attractions:
- Majayjay Falls
- Liliw, Laguna
- Lucban, Quezon (Kamay ni Hesus)
For complete info on tours, accommodations and other types of inquiries, you can contact Costales Nature Farms:
Facebook | email: email@example.com
Disclaimer: Thanks Costales Nature Farms for hosting our stay! As always, thoughts and opinions are my own.
Have you been to a farm tour or farm staycation? Let us know in the comments below!
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Katherine Cortes is a 30-something freelance writer/editor. She likes beaches, snorkeling trips, and relaxing staycations (preferably with bath tubs!).