Philippines Roadtrip

Top Things To Do In Tarlac

The province of Tarlac is located in the Central Luzon region of the Philippines and is one of the favorite stopovers of those tourists going up to Baguio City and other Northern provinces. But people only see this place as a quick rest stop point instead of being an actual tourist destination. This landlocked province has many tourist offerings and amazing features that are often overlooked by many.  I have been to many provinces in the North and I can say that Tarlac has something unique which are worth to be explored. So if you are planning for a short haul road trip or spending your weekend somewhere, you might consider this province and here are the top things to do in Tarlac.

Top Things To Do In Tarlac

1. Soul Searching at Monasterio de Tarlac

This is probably the most popular tourist spot in Tarlac and I personally have this place at number one in my list. The monastery is on top of Mount Resurrection and it is located in San Jose, Tarlac which is 45 minutes drive away from the city center. For those who are looking for a spiritual journey, a pilgrimage here is a must. For regular travelers, they will not be disappointed to drive some extra miles to reach there as it is perfectly beautiful. This is the home of the relic of the True Cross of Christ (where Jesus Christ was crucified) and has the 30-foot massive statue of Risen Christ overlooking the glorious mountain view and vast land of Tarlac. It is look-a-like to the ‘Christ the Redeemer’ statue in Rio de Janiero, Brazil.

Risen Christ Statue Monasterio de Tarlac

Monasterio de tarlac

The Risen Christ Statue

Monasterio de tarlac

Monasterio de Tarlac Church

Monasterio de tarlac

Overlooking the beautiful mountain range

Monasterio de tarlac true cross

True Cross located at center of the altar

Monasterio de tarlac

We Love Monasterio de Tarlac

Monasterio de Tarlac
Address: Mt. Resurrection Eco Park, Brgy. Lubigan, San Jose, Tarlac
Contact Number: (045) 493-3002 | (0916) 250-8414
Entrance Fee: Php 50 per Vehicle
Opening Hours: Everyday 7:00AM to 6:00PM

2. Go-Karting in Kart City Tarlac

En-route to Tarlac, I was already excited to experience the adrenaline rush in go-karting. The last time I tried it was 20 years ago in the old Ali Mall in Cubao. Who would have thought that the best go-karting park now in the Philippines is located in Tarlac? This is one of the reasons why I have chosen Tarlac for our weekend getaway this time. Kart City Tarlac is one of the favorite hang out places of the true-blooded Tarlaqueño. Not only because of the thrills in the four wheels but also to appreciate great food, enjoy cold and hot drinks, sing their hearts out in the karaoke and have fun in the game room.

Kart City Tarlac

Kart City Tarlac

Kart City Tarlac KCT

To experience the adrenaline rush in the tracks, you must be at least 4 feet above.  They have a separate go-kart tracks for adults and kids to enjoy which are both newbie friendly. A child can go along with an adult in their double kart available. Riders are provided with proper safety gears and a briefing is also done before you get into the track and hit the gas pedal.

Kart City Tarlac

 

 

Kart City Tarlac

Kart City Tarlac KCT

At the Race Track

Kart City Tarlac
Address: MacArthur Highway, Barangay San Roque, Tarlac City (Located across SM City Tarlac)
Contact Number: (045) 4914053
Go-Karting Fee: 5 Minutes – Php 250 per person (Child/Adult)
Operating Hours: Mon to Fri 3:00pm – 2:00am  | Sat to Sun 10:00am – 2:00am

3. Outdoor Activities in Tarlac Recreational Park

Tarlac Recreational Park is an all-in-one outdoor adventure destination. The site is a 78 hectares sports and recreational park named after the late Congressman Jose V. Yap. It was also the venue of the two big sporting events in the Philippines, the Central Luzon Regional Athletic Meet ( CLRAA) in 2009 and Palarong Pambansa (Philippine National Games) in 2010.

Tarlac Recreational Park Oval

Tarlac Recreational Park Oval

TRP (Tarlac Recreational Park) is a perfect place to relax and camp with the whole family. It also offers fun activities like Fishing, Kayaking, Swimming in their kiddie adventure pool and Olympic size pool and Biking. They also have a 2 km long ATV track but it is currently non-operational due to technical issues. I really wanted to try it so I was a bit frustrated when I knew that it was not available. So if you want to know if it’s operational on your visit, better call them first to make sure. However, there are still plenty of things to do in case they haven’t repaired those buggy cars on your trip to Tarlac.

Tarlac Recreational Park Kayaking

Kayaking

Isdaan Tarlac

Vicinity Map

Tarlac Recreational Park to do

Tarlac Recreational Park Activities

Tarlac Recreational Park ATV

Dune Buggies

Tarlac Recreational Park
Address: San Jose, Tarlac (along the way to Monasterio de Tarlac)
Contact Number: (+63) 9983544261
Operating Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 9:00 AM-5:00 PM

4. Gastronomic Experience in Isdaan Floating Restaurant

By its name, at first i thought that this is just another seafood restaurant with overcharged items in its menu. Well actually this place is not just a seafood restaurant but its a dining haven  where you can savor sumptuous authentic Filipino cuisines.

Isdaan Tarlac

Isdaan Tarlac

Isdaan Menu

Isdaan Tarlac Menu

Your trip to Tarlac will not be complete if you will not experience dining in this restaurant. You can enjoy your meal in a nipa hut floating in their man-made lagoon and pond of Japanese Koi fish which you can also feed for free. The restaurant has enormous sculptures inspired by western and oriental cultures. The place is even made livelier by different performances from their in-house performers, talented cooks and waiters.

Isdaan Tarlac

Isdaan Tarlac

Isdaan Tarlac

Isdaan Tarlac

Their food is really delectable in large servings and priced just right. The only downside in this restaurant is they do not accept credit cards. Oh yeah, you read it right. No plastics in this restaurant so make sure that you have enough cash in your pockets.

Aside from dining while enjoying the great ambiance of the restaurant, visitors can also release their hatred and frustration in Tacsiyapo wall. You can throw anything from mugs, plates, bowls and even box-type television while shouting Tacsiyapo or ‘Shame on You’ in English. Price ranges from Php 25 to Php 2,500.

Tacsiyapo

Tacsiyapo Wall

Isdaan Floating Restaurant
Address: MacArthur Highway, Gerona, Tarlac
Contact Number: (045)9312596
Operating Hours: 08:00am – 10:00pm

This landlocked province of Tarlac has a great tourism potential. Their government just needs to double their effort in promoting the awesome features of their province. They have many historical sites, extraordinary worship destinations, fun adventure parks, beautiful eco-trails and culinary havens.  So if you want to escape the bustling Metro Manila and searching for a destination to explore, visit Tarlac and it won’t disappoint you.

Book a Hotel in Tarlac here!

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tarlac tourist spots

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40 Comments

  • Reply
    Sheila
    March 26, 2017 at 1:19 AM

    After reading this, decided to go to Tarlac this Saturday. Help! How does this sound? Monasterio then lunch at Isdaan then Recreational park. Can I finish it in one dayv

    • Reply
      Jan Michael de Guzman
      March 26, 2017 at 1:13 PM

      Possible! Do Monasterio in the morning. Then take your lunch on the way to TRP then after that have your dinner in Isdaan. Another option is do TRP in the morning then take lunch in Isdaan and long drive to Monasterio

  • Reply
    Neha Verma
    November 29, 2016 at 12:38 AM

    Quiet a list of things to do. And you did go karting with a kiddo!! I am going to try that next

  • Reply
    nycgingeronthego
    November 11, 2016 at 12:29 PM

    The monastery in the mountains looks so beautiful. I would love to visit. I have never tried go karts, but it looks like it could be fun too. So awesome to see you traveling with your daughter. I hope once I have kids I can continue tot travel.

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      November 11, 2016 at 12:37 PM

      It is difficult to travel with kids but It feels really fulfilling and enjoyable. You would love it as well for sure

  • Reply
    Ivy
    November 11, 2016 at 1:06 AM

    The Monasterio de Tarlac totally looks like Christ the Redeemer in Rio! Tarlac sounds like a wonderful time for a family outing. You guys look like you had a blast! I’ve heard of these stress-relief dish throwing activities- sounds like fun but I’d feel bad for breaking stuff haha

  • Reply
    eatlivetraveldrink
    November 10, 2016 at 11:52 PM

    You have such a cute family! Looks like Tarlac is family friendly with options for things to do

  • Reply
    Svet Dimitrov
    November 10, 2016 at 9:03 PM

    What a delightful piece of paradise this is! I have also never heard of Tarlac, but I have surely heard about Luzon. Mesmerisingly beautiful photos and I’d really love to try out the karting or kayaking, hehe 😉

  • Reply
    Christina
    November 10, 2016 at 4:50 PM

    I’ve never even heard of Tarlac. It looks like a good spot for a family holiday with plenty of fun activities.

  • Reply
    carmyy
    November 10, 2016 at 4:54 AM

    How fun! I think my favourite would be the kayaking! I’ve never been to the Philippines but am itching to visit for a few hikes.

  • Reply
    thetravelpockets
    November 10, 2016 at 2:29 AM

    What a beautiful location. I’ve been to the Philippines, but not this location. I love how there are plenty of fun outdoor activities for everyone 🙂

  • Reply
    Jen Morrow
    November 10, 2016 at 12:23 AM

    The mountain views are gorgeous. I would definitely spend some time hiking around, then cool off kayaking in that lake.

  • Reply
    Claire
    September 5, 2016 at 7:07 PM

    Haha I love the idea of throwing plates at the wall – shame on you indeed!! 😀

  • Reply
    taylorrecord
    September 1, 2016 at 10:40 PM

    We’d go just about anywhere we could go kart. Looks super fun!

  • Reply
    Suma Jain
    September 1, 2016 at 8:52 PM

    Absolutely loved the view from the Risen Christ!! Tarlac looks like a perfectfamily getaway place.

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      September 2, 2016 at 12:08 AM

      Yes it is really a great place for family fun time

  • Reply
    Kerri
    September 1, 2016 at 10:32 AM

    What a beautiful place. So much beauty actually in the Philippines. I think I would definitely love to get out on the water in a kayak and the floating restaurant also appeals.

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      September 2, 2016 at 12:10 AM

      Hope you can come here someday. I love the floating restaurant as well. Wonderful ambiance.

  • Reply
    Aparna
    September 1, 2016 at 2:00 AM

    This sounds like a fantastic time – great photos too! I’m dying to visit Philippines – and when I make that happen I’ll be visiting Tarlac for sure!

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      September 2, 2016 at 12:14 AM

      Please do come to Philippines. There are tons of things that you can do here.

  • Reply
    Jen Morrow
    August 31, 2016 at 10:29 PM

    Church tours are interesting, but the kayaking would be the highlight of everything in Tarlac for me! Plenty of activities for everyone to choose from.

  • Reply
    Nina
    August 31, 2016 at 6:13 PM

    i´m not planning any trips to Philippines yet. But your tips are very helpul. And i might need them someday 🙂

  • Reply
    WyldfamilyTravel (@wyldfamtravel)
    August 31, 2016 at 10:18 AM

    Looks amazing plenty of activities to do in this destination. i will be adding to my list for when we get to the Philippines.

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      September 2, 2016 at 12:18 AM

      I have seen that you had so many adventures around. Hope you can come here and write your experiencr as well.

  • Reply
    Stella the Travelerette
    August 30, 2016 at 6:56 AM

    Tarlac seems like an incredible place. I am impressed by the beauty of the church and the statue of Christ. I would also love to get out on the water or go to the restaurant. I never realized how many amazing things there were to do in the Philippines until I started reading more travel blogs.

  • Reply
    *Nina Zara* (@Safari_junkie_)
    August 29, 2016 at 5:18 PM

    I thought risen Christ was only in Rio. Philippines are still novelty to me, I really enjoy reading posts about unknown destinations. Thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      August 30, 2016 at 10:16 PM

      Thank you. Hope you can visit the Philippines someday.

  • Reply
    Amandas_Wanderlust
    August 29, 2016 at 5:05 PM

    I must admit that I haven’t even heard of Tarlac but it sounds like there is loads to do there. I think I would choose to go kayaking in Tarlac Recreational Park if I was passing through. Nice post, thanks for opening my eyes to a different place.

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      August 30, 2016 at 10:17 PM

      Thank you. Hope you could visit the Philippines someday.

  • Reply
    Megan Indoe
    August 29, 2016 at 4:36 PM

    We are planning our trip to the Philippines now so this couldn’t have come at a better time! The mountain speaks to me the most and looks like it offers some incredible views! Thanks for sharing, also those go karts looked pretty fun too!

    • Reply
      Wandering JM
      August 30, 2016 at 10:18 PM

      Absolutely. There are more wonderful places there to go like Boracay, Palawan, Cebu, Bohol etc.

  • Reply
    Claire
    August 4, 2016 at 12:23 AM

    Oh wow, this place looks beautiful. So much to do here. I would love to visit!!

  • Reply
    atomsandstories
    July 14, 2016 at 9:18 PM

    Good read. Been to Tarlac but only as a stopover to the North. A must see province pala talaga =)

  • Reply
    Christina
    July 13, 2016 at 2:40 AM

    I haven’t considered Tarlac as a destination previously but more as a stopover. I didn’t realize there is a Monastery with a beautiful statue that can be visited. Looks like Tarlac has a lot to offer the entire family.

  • Reply
    Vyjay Rao
    July 11, 2016 at 3:39 PM

    This is a refreshingly different facet of Philippines that you have unveiled apart from the islands and beaches that are so well known. The Monastery looks so beautiful and serene. The activities in the park too are a lot of fun, especially the Go-Karting.

  • Reply
    urbanrabbit9
    July 11, 2016 at 11:59 AM

    I haven’t been to Tarlac, but I would love to go there because I love go karting. 🙂

  • Reply
    hannah
    July 11, 2016 at 7:44 AM

    This blog post is extremely organized and inspiring as I am planning to go to Tarlac within two years and also the pictures were from great? quality!

  • Reply
    Marge Gavan
    July 11, 2016 at 6:51 AM

    I didn’t know about Tarlac Recreational Park, actually, I haven’t really traveled around Tarlac. I’ve only been there one time and that’s like a decade ago because my friend invited me for the fiesta.

    Anyway, it is sure refreshing to see that there are many things to do in Tarlac. I’d love to go to TRP and ride the dune buggy. I enjoyed driving that when I was in Boracay. Also I want to try the zipline.

  • Reply
    Darlene
    July 10, 2016 at 12:06 PM

    I actually haven’t explored Tarlac yet. But I would love to dine in Isdaan. Been wanting to throw a plate at Tacsiyapo for quite some time. Karting and the activities in the recreational park looks quite fun too! 🙂

  • Reply
    Johna
    July 9, 2016 at 8:21 PM

    Wowwww there’s so many things to do in Tarlac! I’m from Pampanga so it’s so so close! Would love to go Go-Karting! Looks like so much fun 😀

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