The Philippines has a lot of beautiful waterfalls, but nothing can compete with Kaparkan Falls in Abra. Also known as Mulawin Falls, it’s one of the recently discovered attractions in this province.
Kaparkan Falls was already known to locals in the area, but it was only in August 2015 that it was found by an outsider and has since been part of Abra’s top tourist attractions.
Kaparakan Falls measures about 500 meters long and 60 meters wide. The water drains to Tineg River.
My trip to Kaparkan Falls
I’d actually been to Kaparkan Falls a while back. I tagged along Julius (of Laagan.org) and his friends, and we rode a private van from Manila to Abra.
Once we got there, we registered our names in the DPWH building and signed waivers. Then we took a 4×4 monster jeep to the mountain going to Kaparkan Falls. We passed by a huge pastoral area with green grass and huge boulders and then off to the jungle part of the mountain.
The roads were unpaved and not fitting for ordinary vehicles. We passed by people on motorcycles, but sometimes they’d stop as their ride couldn’t take on the muddy and uneven path.
After an hour or so, our 4×4 monster jeep stopped and our driver and guides attached chains to the tires. The ride thereafter was more shaky, and sometimes the vehicle would incline to the left or right at a time. If you’re an adventurous person, this might be fun. Otherwise it can be scary (also this made me realized why we needed to sign a waiver).
We reached the jump-off point and trekked for 20 minutes to Kaparkan Falls.
Kaparkan Falls is a majestic spring terraces. Layers and layers of white limestone filled with small pools of water to bathe on. It’s impossible to capture it all in a single frame.
On days with good rain, the pools are an emerald green. On days when there’s minimal to moderate rain (such as during our visit), the color ranges from clear to muddy. Nonetheless, Kaparkan Falls remains beautiful.
We bathed in pools, took pictures, climbed up and down the waterfall layers. If you trek down the lowest tier of Kaparkan Falls, you’ll find pure aqua-blue pools to swim in.
What’s the secret of Kaparkan Falls? I’d talked with other travelers who’d been here and a lot of us have similar experiences — a presence felt. One told me that there’s a guardian at Kaparkan Falls.
After about 2-3 hours, we trekked our way back to our vehicle.
Travel Guide to Kaparkan Falls (Tineg, Abra)
How to get here
Kaparkan Falls can be found at Sitio Kaparkan, Barangay Caganayan, Tineg in Abra.
To get here, from Cubao, ride a bus (Partas or Dominion) going to Bangued, Abra (8 hours, P730). Then ride a tricycle to the DPWH headquarters (5 min, P20).
From there, you’ll need to register and then ride a 4×4 monster jeep to Kaparkan Falls (5 hours, P850). From the jump-off point, you need to trek for 15-20 minutes to Kaparkan Falls
When to visit
The best months to visit Kaparkan Falls is during the rainy season — July to September. If the rainy season comes early or extends for another month, then it’s possible to come here as early as June or as late as October.
For the rest of the year, Kaparkan Falls is closed since the waterfall is dried up.
Things to bring
Spare clothes, water, dry bag for your gadgets.
Packaged tours and DIY trips to Kaparkan Falls
There are packaged tours to Kaparkan Falls.
It’s also possible to do it DIY. Take note that walk-in is not advisable. Instead, you’ll need to reserve for a slot for a 4×4 monster jeep. It’s best to do this months prior to your planned schedule as slots tend to fill up.
Sample 1 day itinerary to Kaparkan Falls
Here’s a sample 1 day itinerary to Kaparkan Falls, Abra.
8PM ETD Manila to Bangued, Abra
4AM ETA Bangued
4:15AM Register and then proceed to breakfast
5-10AM ETA Kaparkan Falls
10AM-1PM Explore Kaparan Falls
1-5PM Back in Bangued, sunset at Victoria Park
7PM ETD Manila (ETA 5AM the next day)
Side trips may include Tangadan Tunnel (you will pass this one the way to DPWH Headquarters), Don Mariano Bridge, pasalubong center, I Love Abra signage and Bangued Cathedral.
If you’re going to stay 2 days in Abra, you may also visit other attractions such as: Barusibis Falls, Lusuac Spring and Lobot Eco-Park. Alternatively, you may also opt to visit Pinsan Falls in Ilocos instead or take a side trip to Vigan (also in Ilocos).
Where to stay
If you’re going on an overnight trip to Abra, here are the best places to stay:
If you’re going to stay in Vigan (Ilocos) instead, you may search here for discounted rates of hotels in Ilocos Sur.
Budget and expenses
For a DIY tour: Estimated budget for a 1-day itinerary is P2500-2600 per person.
Things to note
- There’s a topload section in the 4×4 monster jeep, but I suggest not choosing to sit there as it’s uncomfortable and you may be subjected to extreme weather (heat or rain).
- Wear durable shoes or sandals. You may need to get off the jeep in difficult parts and walk until the driver deems it safe for everyone to get back inside the jeep.
- When in Kaparkan Falls, be careful when walking along the limestone formations as it can be slippery.
- The journey going to Kaparkan Falls can be tiring, especially if you’re coming from Manila. Get enough rest!
Mobile: (Ador Pudol, Provincial Tourism Officer) 0926 359 3623 / email: email@example.com
Has this travel guide to Kaparkan Falls been helpful to you? Let us know in the comments below!