ORANI, Bataan – Beneath the natural beauty of Barangay Tala of this town lays an episode of violence. The village was formerly rebel infested. Government forces and rebels used to clash in the area, but the dark episode of the village is now a thing of the past. Today, Tala is a thriving eco-tourism territory.
Former Congressman Tong Payumo started development in the area in his first term in 1986 using his Countrywide Development Fund, first the water, then electricity, and road. Prior to the installation of the water system, villagers fetched water from the stream with containers carried by horse. He said he remembers the villagers literally jumping upon seeing the water coming out of the pipes. After that, electricity was installed and the mud road concreted. He said former President and now Speaker of the House Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo also provided fund for road construction.
Payumo said there was no need for rebels to stay because the people were already getting the services of the government. He added the village people became guardians of the forest with some of them former poachers.
The village since then has rapidly turned into haven for adventure seekers, sports enthusiasts, and nature lovers. The climate is similar to Tagaytay, with a panoramic view of the plains of Central Luzon.
A favorite destination nestled in the scenic barangay terrain is Sinagtala Resort and Adventure Park. Ziplines, giant swings, and suspended air bridges can be found there. The resort is also perfect venue for weddings, retreats, family outings, and corporate seminars and team-building with ample grounds, a chapel, conference facilities, and overnight accommodations. There are stunning infinity pools. Guests can also go hiking and river trekking.
Payumo, one of investors heading the development of the resort, said amenities of Sinagtala are continuously being improved. He said the resort is one of the most picturesque hideaways in Central Luzon. He also said it is a place where one can rest his mind and soul.
Barangay Tala is also gateway to the lush forest of Bataan National Park where waterfalls, rivers, and springs abound. The park is rich in fauna and flora. The barangay is also known coffee plantation.