Spontaneous Tagaytay Getaway: The Charm of The Carmelence Lodge, A Toddler’s Sky Ranch Experience

It really was an unplanned trip.

Well, the trip to Manila was totally planned as I needed to report to the company headquarters for my orientation and training for my new role. But the weekend getaway to Tagaytay was spontaneous. It was our last weekend in Manila and since the past days were more of business (as it should), we wanted to go somewhere special for our toddler in tow.

Initially we considered the zoo or the ocean park but since we were all late sleepers and therefore woke up at noon, it was impractical to go to those places for only half the day. So, my sister suggested that we go to Tagaytay! I have to be honest, I was really hoping she’d suggest it but I didn’t want to bring it up because of the bad weather. It was so sweet of her to offer to drive us there even if she did not intend to stay overnight with us.

So before she changed her mind, I instantly went online to book. I ended up booking a quaint cottage-designed inn, The Carmelence Lodge. To save my sister from driving long hours back and forth, my husband volunteered to be behind the wheel instead. He was already enjoying the drive in a new environment anyway.

Because it was already late in the afternoon when we decided to take the trip, we arrived at our destination past dinner time. The lodge did not disappoint. Beneath the dark sky, it still stole my heart. I felt like whoever designed this place had me in mind.

We headed to grab dinner, which was easy since the lodge was located in the town proper.

My rule when in another city is to only eat at places that are not found at home. Hap Chan offered good comfort food amid the windy evening.

Despite the evening’s light rain, the morning that followed was lovely! Blue skies were hovering the now vivid purple structure. Breakfast was served at the patio. The food itself was nothing extraordinary, but the ambiance was perfect. It was extra lovely, thanks to the fact that our toddler was asleep the whole time so we were able to really immerse in the moment. It was the most peaceful breakfast my husband and I shared in a long, long time.

The little tot woke up just in time for the noon check-out (yep, he had a loooong night—didn’t want to sleep in a new place). The staff at The Carmelence Lodge was so accommodating, letting us leave our belongings even after we checked out so we can conveniently tour around the city.

It was my fourth or fifth visit to Tagaytay and I really wanted my small family to also enjoy it as much as I did in all previous occasions. The last time me and my husband/then-boyfriend were there, it was raining hard and I felt sorry he was not able to even get a sneak peek of the famous Taal.

“If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine—it’s lethal.” – Paulo Coelho

Instagram worthy wall at The Carmelence Lodge.

This time was different however because of the toddler we had to bring around and also because the only choice of transportation was a public jeepney. Tried to wait for a cab and book an Uber, but to no avail. So understandably, my husband wanted to stay at the nearby mall. But no, that’s not how I go down when I’m in Tagaytay!

So after much convincing, he agreed that  we go to the Sky Ranch where our son would surely be entertained. It was walking distance, but with no proper sidewalk, we thought it was wiser to take a PUJ; hence, our son’s first every PUJ ride!

Trying to get a glimpse of the island within a lake within a volcano within a lake.

View from the Sky Eye.

You can take a break from all the rides and queuing and just chill in one of the gazebos.

The whole afternoon was more than enough for two parents with an overly excited two-year-old. So we called it a day as soon as my sister and her partner arrived to pick us up. Traffic was overwhelming as expected because it this was a long weekend. We decided to conclude the trip with a quick shopping and dinner at Nuvali. 

The Morning After was absolutely good! Great ending to an exhausting day for everyone.

Most of the restaurants were already closed then, but we were lucky to end up here.

And oh, at Sky Ranch, our little one won this cute stuffed toy we now call Sky Tiger! ♥

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