late postAfter watching Enteng Ng Ina Mo last December, aside from enjoying the funny movie, my family were also encouraged to try Zoobic Safari especially because of the "tiger" scene. When my relatives came home for a vacation, my cousins requested for a trip to the zoo but my dad asked me to research about a tour package for Zoobic Safari instead.
Good thing they have a neat website where I found all the information that I needed. After several back and forth emails and phone calls, I had a good deal of PHP22,700 for an overnight hotel accommodation, free breakfast/dinner and Safari Day tour for 21 adults and 3 cousins below 7 years old.
By 8AM we were traveling from Caloocan to Subic. Thank goodness for SCTEX because it only took 2 hours to reach Zoobic Safari. On the ticket booth, I presented our vouchers for day pass, they informed me that every 15 minutes, groups are scheduled on the 4 hour tour. I was kinda surprised that it will only take that time to go through the entire tour considering that the map looks very complicated. We decided to eat our packed lunch before the tour, and fortunately I was allowed to check in to our hotel thru phone. Our check in was supposed to be 1am but our day tour could last until 4pm so it was very convenient that they allowed late check in.
During the orientation, the guide informed us that the first part is 1 1/2 hour walking trail. That means that we have to leave nanay behind because she's having a hard time walking. The first attraction is the Bird Walk and Bird Thrill where different bird species are available for photo ops for only PHP10.00! My cousins also tried feeding the birds in their hands for another set of fee.
Then we walked through the Rodent World where they have mice and guinea pigs. On the Petting Zoo, you can feed milk to sheeps for a certain amount as usual.
On the second part of our day tour, we have a choice of riding our own cars or paying PHP50 per pax to ride the train. Of course, it is better to experience it together so we opted for the add-on! We rode the Zooper Train while going to the Close Encounter, Savannah & Animal Muzooeum.
The highlight of our Zoobic Safari experience is the Tiger Safari! It is one of those I'm so happy I did it but I dont want to do it again kind of experience! Together with our bakasyonista relatives and nanay we rode a safari jeep, which looks like a normal jeep but the windows are covered with steel bars. It was probably the longest 20 minutes of our lives as our fully protected jeep entered an enclosed area where tigers roam around. We bought a chicken for PHP200.00 that our guide used to lure the tiger near to our jeep. I think for at least 2 minutes the tiger was licking the chicken from our window while we screamed. For a split second, our guide exposed his hand to the tiger when he threw the chicken to our roof which prompted the tiger to jump! The tiger stayed there for at least 5 minutes. The scariest part was when the tiger wont get off the roof and they had to prick him, you dont want to mess with a tiger! Fortunately, we went out of the enclosed area with the same number of people when we got in but more sweaty :)
Other noteworthy attractions are the (1) Aeta's Trail - where the Aetas, the locales from Zambales showcased music and dance numbers as well as their bow & arrow skills- (2) Croco Loco - where we've seen crocodile overload, (3) Animal Parade and (4) additional PHP200 for ZipLine adveture!
Good thing we decided to get the package with hotel accommodation because we were extremely exhausted on the 2 hour commute and 4 hours + Zoobic day tour. Their partner hotel, Zoobic Lodge at Tiara was kinda disappointing. The hotel looks old from the exterior, fortunately it was well maintained and the bath tub saved the day for me. It was a Safari inspired room, plain and simple. We were so tired that we just planned to swim the next morning but the pool was closed, it broke my cousins little hearts! To add to the disappointment, the free breakfast was mediocre. We dont want to spoil our vacation mood so we were supposed to transfer to another resort but my aunt suggested Isdaan restaurant.