Mount Manalmon is part of the historical and ecological Biak na Bato National Park. It is located in San Miguel, Bulacan, about two hours away from Manila by land.
The name, “Manalmon” derived from the word “lamon” which means swallow, and the mountain’s name has a legend behind it: The story goes that long ago, there was a bride and groom and as they were making preparations for their wedding feast, the man decided to hunt for game to serve on the day of the wedding feast.
The man reached the location of what is now known as Mt Manalmon. He saw a deer and shot an arrow to it, killing it swiftly. Unknowingly, the deer belonged to a “diwata” or forest fairy. Angered by the man’s actions, the fairy punished him by submerging half of his body in a rock on the mountain’s summit.
When the bride heard what happened to her groom, she went to the fairy and pleaded for forgiveness. She asked the fairy what she could do to free the man.
The fairy told the bride to get nine empty jars and fill them with fruit sap or nectar. Only then would she let the man free.
The bride travelled to every corner of Bulacan in search of fruit-bearing trees. One by one, she collected their sap or nectar yet at the very end, she was able to fill only eight and a half of the nine jars. She took the last jar and added water to fill it up, and presented the nine jars to the fairy.
The fairy soon discovered the deception and grew even more furious than before. She turned the woman into a bird while the man was permanently swallowed up by the rock in which he was half-submerged. This is why the place is called Manalmon.
Although Mount Manalmon is only 196 meters above sea level, which makes it a hill or a relatively small mountain, many people climb it for a beginner’s hike or a simple day trip. It offers a picturesque view of the landscape, which includes rock formations, forest foliage, the peaceful Madlum River and its surrounding boulders.
Trekkers have the option to take the easy trail or the more advanced balikatan trail. The climb begins with an uphill trek that proceeds to the Manalmon Cave. Also known as Madlum Cave, Manalmon Cave is a small cave that leads to a very rocky slope before opening to the sandy riverbank of the Madlum River. Trekkers cross the Madlum River and walk an uphill trail that leads to the mountain’s summit.
The summit offers a majestic view of the Sierra Madre Mountain Range and its neighboring mountains, Mt. Gola, Mt. Mabio and Mt. Arayat.
From Pasay or Cubao Quezon City, board a bus going to Cabanatuan, Bulacan. Tell the driver to let you off at Kamias in San Miguel. From Kamias, take a tricycle to the base point at Barangay Madlum.